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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 08 Feb 2016 (Monday) 20:26
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Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Aperture versus Bokeh

 
Myboostedgst
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Feb 09, 2016 22:39 |  #16

Thanks for the info. I have really been considering picking up a 85L instead of my 135L. I think I might just have to rent the 85L this spring and compare them.


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Feb 10, 2016 02:53 |  #17

Myboostedgst wrote in post #17892457 (external link)
Me neither. -?

I did a test to compare a few different lenses, but it was a slightly different thought than yours. I rented a 70-200 F4 IS and a 70-200 F2.8 IS II to compare side by side with my 135L. My thought was "is the IS II good enough to replace the 135L and be my only lens, or should I supplement my 135L with the F4". I was actually suprised with the results comparing side by side during the shoot and then post processing them side by side.

So? What were those results? Don't leave us hanging! Maybe start a new post with that info?


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Feb 10, 2016 04:47 |  #18

I do not know if this is helpful, but here I have few photos from different lenses, comparing bokeh. I was trying to match the front of the green Lego platform to the frame, but MFD did not allow me to do it for every lens. All of them are wide open.

35L

IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/903/fpPf8T.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p3fpPf8Tj  (external link)


50STM
IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/905/VWF4ZI.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p5VWF4ZIj  (external link)


85L II
IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/905/ZDijVs.jpg
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100/2
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135L
IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/903/4dBsrM.jpg
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200L II
IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/905/dGVzRc.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p5dGVzRcj  (external link)

85L II Around 120cm to my son and 200cm to the tree.
IMAGE: http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/xq90/633/f2a33F.jpg
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/hlf2a33Fj  (external link)

85L II is a great lens, but mostly for full body. On head shots the DOF is extremely thin, that if an eye is sharp, the eyelashes are out of focus.

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JeffreyG
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Feb 10, 2016 05:29 |  #19

neacail wrote in post #17892438 (external link)
I'm really going to need to play with the lens before a purchase.

Yes, there have been some conversations in this thread that have puzzled me and I wonder if everyone has the right understanding of a few things.

1) From f/2.8 and smaller apertures, the 85L II is going to give the exact same FOV, DOF and degree of background blur as your 70-200/2.8 will if you also use the zoom lens at 85mm. Right from the gate it is important to understand that at the same settings (focal length, aperture) these lenses are about 99% the same.

2) Regarding 'bokeh' (the look of the blur), this is in fact a function of the lens and I would agree that the 85L II is very good at it. But the difference in the appearance of the blur between the 85L II at f/2.8 and the 70-200/2.8 at 85mm and f/2.8 is going to be so small you would really need to look for it in a shot that accentuates the appearance. This would be the opposite of a controlled background in a studio. Most people who worry about bokeh appearance are trying to smooth out natural backgrounds like foliage where bad bokeh can become quite busy. And since the 70-200/2.8 is also a lens with good bokeh, the difference between it and the 85L II is pretty small.

3) For most people then, the biggest difference between the 85L II and the 70-200/2.8 when thinking about 85mm, is that the prime lens offers the extra 2 1/3 stops maximum aperture. For sure when you use the 85L II at apertures larger than f/2.8 you will get more blur and less DOF than was possible with the zoom lens being limited to f/2.8. This is the main difference people would suggest between using these two lenses.


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Moncho
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Feb 10, 2016 06:06 |  #20

mkkaczy wrote in post #17892709 (external link)
I do not know if this is helpful, but here I have few photos from different lenses, comparing bokeh. I was trying to match the front of the green Lego platform to the frame, but MFD did not allow me to do it for every lens. All of them are wide open.

35L
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p3fpPf8Tj  (external link)


50STM
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p5VWF4ZIj  (external link)


85L II
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/p5ZDijVsj  (external link)


100/2
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/pbE61Z8Jj  (external link)

135L
https://imageshack.com​/i/p34dBsrMj (external link)

200L II
https://imageshack.com​/i/p5dGVzRcj (external link)

85L II Around 120cm to my son and 200cm to the tree.
https://imageshack.com​/i/hlf2a33Fj (external link)

85L II is a great lens, but mostly for full body. On head shots the DOF is extremely thin, that if an eye is sharp, the eyelashes are out of focus.


Thanks for the samples! Were they all shot at MFD?


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mkkaczy
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Feb 10, 2016 06:16 as a reply to  @ Moncho's post |  #21

35L and 50STM near the MFD. All the rest at MFD.


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Feb 10, 2016 07:11 |  #22

Moncho wrote in post #17892661 (external link)
So? What were those results? Don't leave us hanging! Maybe start a new post with that info?

I'll see what I can do tonight. I do have a photo on my Flickr with the three side by side around 136mm and wide open to compare.

mkkaczy wrote in post #17892770 (external link)
35L and 50STM near the MFD. All the rest at MFD.

Awesome test and examples!


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Feb 10, 2016 07:34 |  #23

absplastic wrote in post #17892498 (external link)
At f/1.2 you don't need much distance to completely obliterate the backdrop. This is a photo of my daughter's stuffed tiger on our kitchen table. My daughter is standing about 4 feet behind him, and she's nothing but a colorful shape. That mass of lights is our Xmas tree :-) A faux brick backdrop a few feet behind someone would barely even read as bricks at f/1.2.

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That is awesome. If I was using a patterned back drop that I wanted to soften it would save me space.


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neacail
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Feb 10, 2016 07:42 |  #24

mkkaczy wrote in post #17892709 (external link)
I do not know if this is helpful, but here I have few photos from different lenses, comparing bokeh. I was trying to match the front of the green Lego platform to the frame, but MFD did not allow me to do it for every lens. All of them are wide open.

85L II Around 120cm to my son and 200cm to the tree.
QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: https://imageshack.com​/i/hlf2a33Fj  (external link)

85L II is a great lens, but mostly for full body. On head shots the DOF is extremely thin, that if an eye is sharp, the eyelashes are out of focus.

Thank you for sharing those. :) The last three certainly appealed to me the most. But, I don't have room for the 135 or the 200 (the 200 is off my wish list this year anyway, as I'll be purchasing the 5DIII replacement when it is eventually released).

You have a handsome lad!


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Feb 10, 2016 07:57 |  #25

JeffreyG wrote in post #17892734 (external link)
Yes, there have been some conversations in this thread that have puzzled me and I wonder if everyone has the right understanding of a few things.

1) From f/2.8 and smaller apertures, the 85L II is going to give the exact same FOV, DOF and degree of background blur as your 70-200/2.8 will if you also use the zoom lens at 85mm. Right from the gate it is important to understand that at the same settings (focal length, aperture) these lenses are about 99% the same.

Thank you for taking the time to post. :)

I do understand, but I think I've confused people by writing that I would probably seldom use 1.2. I do blab on.

I would probably use below 2.8 very often (though I might go up to 4.0 with it . . . a revision from my previously stated 5.6), especially as I might be able to move the subject closer to the backdrop and then be able to increase my distance from the subject in my tiny studio space.

The 70-200 2.8 II is a great lens, and I do 90+% of my photography work with it, but there are times when I would like to go wider than 2.8. Saving around 400 grams of weight might be nice too. The 85 is heavy, but the 70-200 is even heavier.


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Feb 10, 2016 10:42 as a reply to  @ neacail's post |  #26

So far I use my 50L wide open 95% of the time. But also I just recently got it. I'm still in the lens honeymoon fase. Shot wide-open, cropped to help with the center focus composition.


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Feb 10, 2016 14:11 |  #27

I think the lenses you have are already good for studio. f2.8 on a 1.6 crop is not the same as f2.8 on a FF, right? I think you should also rent a FF camera and see if your existing lenses meet your needs. I suspect they will. After shooting FF from 1.3x cameras, I find that the characteristics of wide opening shots differs with FF and prefer the look.

I like both 70-200mm f2.8 II and 85mm 1.2 II but if you have moving kids, the 85mm is somewhat a challenge to focus especially at f1.2.




  
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Feb 10, 2016 14:41 |  #28

tntadroit wrote in post #17893389 (external link)
I think the lenses you have are already good for studio. f2.8 on a 1.6 crop is not the same as f2.8 on a FF, right? I think you should also rent a FF camera and see if your existing lenses meet your needs. I suspect they will. After shooting FF from 1.3x cameras, I find that the characteristics of wide opening shots differs with FF and prefer the look.

I like both 70-200mm f2.8 II and 85mm 1.2 II but if you have moving kids, the 85mm is somewhat a challenge to focus especially at f1.2.

Me? I have a full frame camera.


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Feb 10, 2016 15:07 as a reply to  @ post 17892510 |  #29

I find the 85L to be one of the hardest lenses to use wide open. f1.2 is such razor thin DOF that if you take a photo of someone and focus on their nose, their eyes are not in focus. It gets better at f1.4 and better still between that and f2.8. I think for most people who buy a f1.2 monster (I include myself in this mix) the expectation that this 1.2 number will produce better photos is not correct. Using the 85L on people at f1.2 was miserable. Think Telephoto in low light results miserable. Using it on other things was fun but it really isn't a lens build for multi purpose and its AF is painfully slow. Like if you don't know its supposed to be that slow you'd think it was broken.

The 85L however is one the best lenses I have ever used and not one of my photos taken with it ever needed any color adjustment but other then that I prefer the 85mm f1.8 in near all ways except the ego factor. If you're not entirely sure about the 85L I honestly suggest a 85mm f1.8. It is a little "slower" but its AF is about 1000X faster and is very good bang for your buck. If you find yourself wearing it out. a 85L is for you.


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Feb 10, 2016 16:27 |  #30

The AF is noticeably slower than the 85/1.8. I think it is a bit faster on 1DIII, but prefer to use on 5DIII. However I never liked the AF of the 85/1.8, just fast but less accurate. This one is slower, but better sticks to slowly moving subjects.
Because a paper thin DOF I do not use it much for headshots (135 is much better), but love to use it outside as a full body lens, shooting toward source of light at f/1.2 at some moving subjects.

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Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Aperture versus Bokeh
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