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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 29 Apr 2013 (Monday) 09:29
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HOLY MACKEREL! 85/1.2L or the 135/2L for $1000?!

 
thenotorlousdan
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Apr 29, 2013 09:29 |  #1

Okay, this sounds crazy but I managed my friend to sell me his 85/1.2 for $1000. I know! $1000! It's a steal alright! It only has a ding on the front of the lens, so it's hard to place the lens cap on but the focus and lens seem to be in perfectly fine condition. It was produced in 2008, with its UW code on the back of the lens. I might have to get some testing on it though before I commit to fully buy (though my friend did say he will cover the cost of anything over $250 if the lens needs repair).

But the thing is, I've been reading threads and they're saying that the 85L is a beautiful beast. Hard to tame, with its deathly slow focus, frustrating OOF due to its super shallow DOF. And thus, people say, get the 85/1.8 alternative instead, which is like $650 cheaper.

What are your thoughts?

I think that the 85L is a great buy at $1000. BUT if it is not worth the investment and hassle, I might opt to go with the 85/1.8 AND the 135/2L (which I find to be tact sharp as I have rented it, but its focal length is a bit too long). That'll come out to $1300 more or less.

My current setup is the Zeiss 35/2. And probably will be adding the 85, and then the 100/2.8 or 135 later on.

I need your thoughts ASAP.




  
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lennartsw
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Apr 29, 2013 09:31 |  #2

Is it the 85mm f/1.2 II? Then get it. Otherwise it is a hard decision.


Sorry for my bad English
5DIII, 7D, Samyang 14 2.8, Canon 17-40 4L, Canon 28 1.8, Zeiss 50 1.4, Canon 85 1.2L II, Canon 100 2.8L, Canon 100-400L 4.5-5.6

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LostArk
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Apr 29, 2013 09:33 |  #3

Are you talking about the 85L mark II? If so, then absolutely get it. If its the mark I, I would pass.


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SMP_Homer
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Apr 29, 2013 09:34 |  #4

even the original EF 85L would be a good deal at that price


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thenotorlousdan
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Apr 29, 2013 09:34 |  #5

Hi all, it is a MK II, it has a code of UW, which is a 2008 production model.




  
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Andy_T
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Apr 29, 2013 09:38 |  #6

My guess is ... try it out, I guess it is a wonderful lens.

And as far as focusing speed is concerned, unless you use it for sports photography, it might be fast enough (just not as fast as the 85/1.8).

Of course, if you should absolutely not get along with it, I might be ready to lessen your loss a bit and take it from you for $ 950 :twisted:

(Just kidding)

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sportmode
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Apr 29, 2013 09:43 as a reply to  @ thenotorlousdan's post |  #7

I would check AF with your camera first -- all focus points, outdoors, low-light. Since it's out of warranty, it'll cost you to get it matched to your camera if repair is necessary. AF at f1.2 apparently needs super precision, and MFA didn't help in my case. I had to send it in twice to get it right on my 5D3 -- they had to fix both lens and camera.


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thenotorlousdan
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Apr 29, 2013 09:49 |  #8

I did try it out yesterday night for my younger brother's birthday party. Some did look sharp, some where all OOF. I use the 5D Mark II at the moment.

How much would a normal lens repair cost if it needs to be fixed?




  
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gtrag94
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Apr 29, 2013 09:57 |  #9

All repairs at Canon are usually flat rate. The 85L2 would be somewhere around $250-300 plus shipping/insurance to them and $14 for them to ship it back to you via FedEx 2 day. They usually go out of their way to fix/adjust/replace anything close to out of spec... I've always been VERY happy with their service. And, if you're a CPS member (Canon Professional Services), you can get a 0%, 30% or 60% discount with free shipping one or both ways all depending on your membership level. BUT, you have to acknowledge that you are a "Full Time Professional Image Maker". Even if you're not a CPS member, $1000 with him fronting $250 for repair is a great deal on an 85L2. It is not a good even/candid lens because the AF is slow and it never keeps up with the normal swaying/moving of people laughing, etc. It is a killer planned portrait lens!


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Trent ­ Gillespie
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Apr 29, 2013 10:12 |  #10

thenotorlousdan wrote in post #15878700 (external link)
I did try it out yesterday night for my younger brother's birthday party. Some did look sharp, some where all OOF. I use the 5D Mark II at the moment.

How much would a normal lens repair cost if it needs to be fixed?

It depends on what they find wrong with the lens. I sent in a 16-35mm with a loose front end, and they ended up replacing the entire front element (including glass) because the original was scratched. The repair was around $400, and when I asked them to forgo the front element lens replacement, they said they couldn't, because it wouldn't pass final inspection with the scratch.

So, long story short, you never really know. You can always send it in, get a quote, and if you don't agree, they'll send it back. I would guess somewhere between $200 and $400 though. The nice thing about doing a CPS repair is when you get your lens back, its nearly as good as new.

Lastly, the 85 1.2 MKII is a beauty. Its a lens that gives that instant "WOW" effect when used properly. Not every picture you take needs such extreme shallow DOF, but when used appropriately, it is almost magical. Also, I wouldn't consider the lens deathly slow in the AF department.


Trent Gillespie
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thenotorlousdan
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Apr 29, 2013 11:16 |  #11

gtrag94 wrote in post #15878723 (external link)
Even if you're not a CPS member, $1000 with him fronting $250 for repair is a great deal on an 85L2. It is not a good even/candid lens because the AF is slow and it never keeps up with the normal swaying/moving of people laughing, etc. It is a killer planned portrait lens!

So for candids, it'll be an awful lens? hmm... would 1.8 be any better?




  
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lennartsw
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Apr 29, 2013 11:21 |  #12

The 85mm f/1.8 has faster autofocus. But get the 85mm f/1.2! An awesome lens for an awesome price!


Sorry for my bad English
5DIII, 7D, Samyang 14 2.8, Canon 17-40 4L, Canon 28 1.8, Zeiss 50 1.4, Canon 85 1.2L II, Canon 100 2.8L, Canon 100-400L 4.5-5.6

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CanonYouCan
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Apr 29, 2013 11:45 |  #13

First I had 135L and sold it, then 85L but too shallow dof, slow AF, heavy... then I got the fitter 85 1.8 which is great and minimal difference (some contrast/colour adjustment, but I postprocess anyway). Eventually i got tired of the purple fringing and got back to the perfect 135L, I say perfect as the IQ is perfect, only a bit longer focal length. I use it together with 24-70 2.8L I. This weekend I used my 35 1.4L, I even find f1.4 too shallow sometimes, I have some pics where only some small parts are sharp... In past it was nice to have as much as possible unsharp except the subject, now i'm appreciating more sharpness in pictures, the opposite.


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Trent ­ Gillespie
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Apr 29, 2013 11:55 |  #14

CanonYouCan wrote in post #15879103 (external link)
First I had 135L and sold it, then 85L but too shallow dof, slow AF, heavy... then I got the fitter 85 1.8 which is great and minimal difference (some contrast/colour adjustment, but I postprocess anyway). Eventually i got tired of the purple fringing and got back to the perfect 135L, I say perfect as the IQ is perfect, only a bit longer focal length. I use it together with 24-70 2.8L I. This weekend I used my 35 1.4L, I even find f1.4 too shallow sometimes, I have some pics where only some small parts are sharp... In past it was nice to have as much as possible unsharp except the subject, now i'm appreciating more sharpness in pictures, the opposite.

While shooting at f/1.2 and 1.4 is needed at times, I rarely do with the 35 and 85. The reason I choose to use them instead of their f/2 and 1.8 counter parts, is for the ability to have sharp images without vignetting at f/2. The 85 f/1.8 is fast, smaller and inexpensive, but needs stopped down to around f/2.8 before I get similar image quality. And... before I get a barrage of 85 1.8 shots showing how sharp it is wide open... I fully agree with you... but when compared, the 1.2 photos need less attention after the fact.


Trent Gillespie
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mikeinctown
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Apr 29, 2013 13:03 |  #15

An 85L V2 for a grand is a steal, even if it costs you an extra $250 in repairs. They are going for $1,600 on the cheap end used. I would personally jump on the deal and then send it off to Canon for repair. I had a V1 70-200 repaired by them and I can say it was worth every penny. Heck, for a grand I'd buy it and let it sit around until I had the funds to send it in for repair. Not like it will go bad if it is in a bag for a couple months.




  
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HOLY MACKEREL! 85/1.2L or the 135/2L for $1000?!
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