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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 06 Feb 2014 (Thursday) 14:46
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Canon 85mm 1.8 or Tamron 60mm 2.0????

 
Ralph ­ III
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Feb 06, 2014 14:46 |  #1

NOTE: I have a Canon 40d (APSC sensor)

Does anyone have any experience with the Tamron 60mm f2.0 and how does it compare to the Canon 85mm f1.8? I have a little extra money and may consider getting one or the other.

I want a good portrait lens and like the fact the Tammy is also a Macro (1:1) lens because I don't have one.

Note: I've always had a tough time with the 50mm so don't recommend that. It's just an odd focal length on my crop camera because I find it either to short or to long. A longer or shorter lens would at least limit my usage to "specialized" situations.

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Feb 06, 2014 17:27 |  #2

My 85 works well on the 40D....and for macro...just pick up a extension tube and have both for less :)


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PH68
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Feb 06, 2014 18:28 |  #3

Given you have a crop camera.
How about the Canon EFS 60 f/2.8.
It does macro and, by all accounts, is a very sharp lens.


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xarqi
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Feb 06, 2014 19:09 |  #4

Ralph III wrote in post #16668761 (external link)
Note: I've always had a tough time with the 50mm so don't recommend that.

If you don't like 50, 60 probably isn't going to be much better.
I'd say the toss up could be between the 85/1.8 and the Tamron 90 (if you want a macro dual-purpose lens).




  
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amfoto1
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Feb 06, 2014 19:11 |  #5

I have both lenses....

The Canon 85/1.8 is an excellent portrait lens. Its reasonably well built and fast focusing. In fact, the lens' USM AF is very accurate and fast enough it can be used as a short sports tele. It can be used considerably closer by adding some extension tubes, but certainly isn't a macro lens on it's own. As an EF lens, it can be used on either crop cameras or full frame.

A minor complaint I have about the 85mm is the lens hood is a clip on, rather than a bayonet mount. Looking at it, you would think it might be easy to break.... But I've been using the same one for a number of years without any special care and have never damaged it, even though I've bumped it hard enough to knock it off the lens at times. The 85mm also can exhibit some chromatic aberration, especially at large apertures. It's not a lot and usually can be pretty easily fixed in post processing.

I got the Tamron SP 60mm f2.0 recently with the idea of it replacing three lenses in my camera bag sometimes (50/1.4, 85/1.8 and either 90mm or 100mm macro lens). I'd planned to carry it when I didn't know that I'd be shooting macro or portraits, when I was carrying other lenses and wanted to lighten up my load.

I found it has very nice image quality, even wide open. This was no surprise to me, because I've used a number of Tamron SP lenses over the years and they have always offered top image quality. It's a little shorter focal length than I normally use for macro, but its an internal focusing (IF) lens so does not grow in length when focused closer. Working distance is minimal, but workable.... though I don't think I've shot with it at full 1:1 yet.

I've shot some portraits with it and the f2.0 aperture is nice to have at your disposal.

Where I found the a bit wanting is in build... It's a little more plasticky than I expected from past experience with Tamron lenses. To be fair the 85/1.8 is a bit plasticky, too. Neither of them is an L-quality build, but they aren't priced like an L-series either. The Tamron comes with a matching lens hood, where the EF 85/1.8 doesn't (it's sold separately).

Also, the Tamron lens is slower focusing. It's a micro motor drive, I think. Certainly performs like it, though it's not loud like some micro motor lenses and it seems accurate. And it doesn't have a focus limiter like some macro lenses. You won't be using it for sports. On one of my 7Ds it couldn't keep up tracking a 3 year old coming down a slide or on a swing. Other lenses I use could track (Canon USM). I have not used the Canon EF-S 60/2.8, but imagine it's USM is faster than the Tamron, though it's probably not as fast as non-macro lenses such as the 50/1.4 or 85/1.8. The price of the Tamron 60mm vs the Canon 60mm isn't much different. But for my purposes the f2.0 aperture of the Tamron was more important than the foucs speed.

The Tamron is a nice lens and I'm keeping it for a while. It does macro and portraits well. It's a bit of a compromise for me, for macro. So it's a back up or substitute lens when I want a compact and lightweight lens that will take up minimal space in my camera bag.

But I'm also keeping my 50/1.4 and 85/1.8.... I still prefer them for portraiture when possible. And I certainly will be hanging onto my 100mm macro for the additional features it offers (tripod mount, focus limiter, more working distance, and more).


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maverick75
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Feb 06, 2014 19:12 |  #6

85mm is nice on a crop, feels like a 135mm on full frame.


I'm with you on the 50mm, I don't like it on crop or full frame. It's just boring.


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Ralph ­ III
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Feb 06, 2014 21:08 as a reply to  @ maverick75's post |  #7

Thanks for all the replies and it's given me some things to consider. It is disappointing to hear the Tamron 60mm is slow at focus though.

Ralph


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amfoto1
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Feb 06, 2014 21:29 |  #8

Ralph III wrote in post #16669706 (external link)
Thanks for all the replies and it's given me some things to consider. It is disappointing to hear the Tamron 60mm is slow at focus though.

Ralph

Well, it's not one of their new USD focusing lenses, which are supposed to be similar to Canon USM.

I don't want to make it sound too bad... Focus speed of the SP 60/2.0 is generally fine for portraiture and macro work. It just falls short trying to track moving subjects.

Most macro lenses are slower focusing... they tend to have "long throw" focus that emphasizes accuracy over speed, plus they have to move their focus group a long way to go all the way from infinity to 1:1. The Canon 100/2.8 USM isn't really fast enough for sports/action shooting, either... but is fast enough for some non-macro uses. The 180/3.5L USM is even slower. I don't know how the EF-S 60mm compares, haven't used it.


Alan Myers (external link) "Walk softly and carry a big lens."
5DII, 7DII(x2), 7D(x2) & other cameras. 10-22mm, Tokina 12-24/4, 20/2.8, TS 24/3.5L, 24-70/2.8L, 28/1.8, 28-135 IS (x2), TS 45/2.8, 50/1.4, Tamron 60/2.0, 70-200/4L IS, 70-200/2.8 IS, 85/1.8, Tamron 90/2.5 Macro, 100/2.8 USM, 100-400L II, 135/2L, 180/3.5L, 300/4L IS (x2), 300/2.8L IS, 500/4L IS, EF 1.4X II, EF 2X II. Flashes, studio strobes & various access. - FLICKR (external link) - ZENFOLIO (external link)

  
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ceegee
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Feb 06, 2014 21:57 |  #9

I had both the Canon 60 f2.8 macro and the Canon 85 f1.8 for a while, and ended up selling the 85 and keeping the 60. There were several reasons. First, the 60 feels "right" on the camera, whereas the 85 never really did. I also enjoy the close focusing capability of the 60; it makes for some good creative opportunities. With the 85, the MFD is fairly long, which was a problem for me, sometimes. There's also the question of macro capability. A macro lens is a lot of fun. I've discovered an aspect of photography I wouldn't otherwise have experienced, and thoroughly enjoy it.

While I used the 85 quite a bit when I first got it, it ended up being the least-used lens in my bag. When I did use it, the results were amazing, but it just wasn't versatile enough, given what I shoot, to justify. So I sold it, and haven't missed it.

But I would miss the 60 macro if I sold it.


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MalVeauX
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Feb 06, 2014 22:12 |  #10

Ralph III wrote in post #16668761 (external link)
NOTE: I have a Canon 40d (APSC sensor)

Does anyone have any experience with the Tamron 60mm f2.0 and how does it compare to the Canon 85mm f1.8? I have a little extra money and may consider getting one or the other.

I want a good portrait lens and like the fact the Tammy is also a Macro (1:1) lens because I don't have one.

Note: I've always had a tough time with the 50mm so don't recommend that. It's just an odd focal length on my crop camera because I find it either to short or to long. A longer or shorter lens would at least limit my usage to "specialized" situations.

Ralph

Heya,

Both are excellent for your needs. I love the 85mm on a crop, it's the same field of view as a 135mm on a full frame essentially. Long, compressing, great aperture, sharp, and very fast. Great thin depth of field.

60mm is great for portrait too though. And F2 is still very fast and does the job. If it doubles as a macro lens and you really want some macro ability, then this seems like the simple answer for you. Since you're getting portrait and macro in one lens, it ends up being the smarter buy for your situation. On a crop, you're still looking at a field of view similar to 100mm on a full frame, so it's still great for portrait, lots of compression and fast aperture for thin depth of field.

Very best,


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BeritOlam
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Feb 07, 2014 00:47 |  #11

+1 to everything amfoto1 said. I shot with the Tammy for a day, and as a guy who has *not* been too impressed with Tammy stuff in the past, I actually had a great time shooting with it. It really comes down to how much you want to get into macro vs. have something that can better track action. Which is why I stick with the 85mm in my bag -- it really has a great reputation as being one of the best non-L's with L-like quality out there. I slap it on my cropper all the time when I take the kids to the park and don't want to lug the weight of my 70-200 2.8 IS II along for the ride...and really don't feel like I'm losing much (if any) image quality at all.


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5D3ismydream
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Feb 07, 2014 01:13 |  #12
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Canon 85mm f/1.8 is legendary portrait lens




  
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yogestee
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Feb 07, 2014 08:35 as a reply to  @ 5D3ismydream's post |  #13

Before buying my 85mm f1.8 I used to shoot a lot of portraits with my Tamron 90mm f/2.8 macro. I never found AF speed wanting as in reality one doesn't focus from minimum focus distance to infinity and back. Fosuing is achieved in small increments.

One thing about the Tamron, it's shaaaaaaarp. Brutally sharp.


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Ralph ­ III
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Feb 07, 2014 12:47 |  #14

yogestee wrote in post #16670574 (external link)
Before buying my 85mm f1.8 I used to shoot a lot of portraits with my Tamron 90mm f/2.8 macro. I never found AF speed wanting as in reality one doesn't focus from minimum focus distance to infinity and back. Fosuing is achieved in small increments.

One thing about the Tamron, it's shaaaaaaarp. Brutally sharp.

Which Tamron are you referring to that is "brutally sharp"? The 60 f2.0 as I inquired or the Tamron 90mm f/2.8 and how does your Canon 85mm f1.8 compare?

---------------

I'm again leaning toward the Tamron 60mm f2.0. It's a little slow on focus but in consideration of how I want to use it, that won't matter. It's also nearer 50mm which I didn't like on my crop; however, it is still slightly longer which will further limit my attempts to use it in a wide fashion and it has the added benefit of being a Macro (1:1), which I don't have.

I'm still considering the 85mm as well and it may just come down to how good of a deal I can get on one or the other.;)

Ralph


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yogestee
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Feb 07, 2014 18:02 |  #15

Ralph III wrote in post #16671294 (external link)
Which Tamron are you referring to that is "brutally sharp"? The 60 f2.0 as I inquired or the Tamron 90mm f/2.8 and how does your Canon 85mm f1.8 compare?

---------------

I'm again leaning toward the Tamron 60mm f2.0. It's a little slow on focus but in consideration of how I want to use it, that won't matter. It's also nearer 50mm which I didn't like on my crop; however, it is still slightly longer which will further limit my attempts to use it in a wide fashion and it has the added benefit of being a Macro (1:1), which I don't have.

I'm still considering the 85mm as well and it may just come down to how good of a deal I can get on one or the other.;)

Ralph

The 90mm macro. I doubt there is a macro prime that isn't sharp. There's no point in comparing the Canon 85mm and Tamron 90mmm as both are very sharp.


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Canon 85mm 1.8 or Tamron 60mm 2.0????
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