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Thread started 05 Nov 2016 (Saturday) 03:21
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Love portrait photography: with 2000$, should i buy a 5d mark iii or 85mm f/1.2 II?

 
vietnameseamateur
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Nov 05, 2016 03:21 |  #1

Love portrait photography: with 2000$, should i buy a 5d mark iii or 85mm f/1.2 L II USM?

I currently own a 5D Mark II and a 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm, I frequently doing portrait photography

If i buy a 5D Mark III: will it bring significantly better image quality than 5D Mark II?

If i buy a 85mm f/1.2 L II USM: with dreamy bokeh, it's so perfect for portrait photography, it can bring significantly thinner DOF than the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm. But i will keep the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm for birding photography (with the 2.0 extender)




  
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saea501
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Nov 05, 2016 06:52 |  #2

vietnameseamateur wrote in post #18176318 (external link)
Love portrait photography: with 2000$, should i buy a 5d mark iii or 85mm f/1.2 L II USM?

I currently own a 5D Mark II and a 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm, I frequently doing portrait photography

If i buy a 5D Mark III: will it bring significantly better image quality than 5D Mark II?

If i buy a 85mm f/1.2 L II USM: with dreamy bokeh, it's so perfect for portrait photography, it can bring significantly thinner DOF than the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm. But i will keep the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm for birding photography (with the 2.0 extender)

Going from a 5DII to a 5DIII the difference in image quality will be essentially zero.

I can't imagine that you can't get great bokeh with the 70-200 2.8. That's a great portrait lens. Using it for birding? I found it too short for that and a 2X extender made auto focus slow to the point of being completely useless for shooting birds in flight.


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Bassat
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Nov 05, 2016 06:57 |  #3

saea501 wrote in post #18176385 (external link)
Going from a 5DII to a 5DIII the difference in image quality will be essentially zero.

I can't imagine that you can't get great bokeh with the 70-200 2.8. That's a great portrait lens. Using it for birding? I found it too short for that and a 2X extender made auto focus slow to the point of being completely useless for shooting birds in flight.

Totally agree on all points.




  
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Left ­ Handed ­ Brisket
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Nov 05, 2016 06:57 |  #4

I'm going to go with "neither" also.

Depending on your available camera-subject distance, the zoom at 200 should have plenty of OOF separation.

What about the 135L?

And spend the rest of the money on something else you've been needing.


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texkam
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Nov 05, 2016 11:51 |  #5

You're fine. Keep the money for making prints of your bird shots to enjoy.




  
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texaskev
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Nov 05, 2016 20:56 |  #6

Go for the glass every time. Love that 85 1.2 L


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Deardorff
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Nov 06, 2016 08:17 |  #7

Get the older 1DsMkIII and the 85 f/1.8. A nice combination and at low ISO settings the 5D bodies are not as nice.


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amfoto1
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Nov 06, 2016 12:06 |  #8

vietnameseamateur wrote in post #18176318 (external link)
Love portrait photography: with 2000$, should i buy a 5d mark iii or 85mm f/1.2 L II USM?

I currently own a 5D Mark II and a 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm, I frequently doing portrait photography

If i buy a 5D Mark III: will it bring significantly better image quality than 5D Mark II?

If i buy a 85mm f/1.2 L II USM: with dreamy bokeh, it's so perfect for portrait photography, it can bring significantly thinner DOF than the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm. But i will keep the 70-200mm f/2.8 l is ii usm for birding photography (with the 2.0 extender)

The primary difference between 5DII and 5DIII is the huge improvement in the AF system. That's largely unnecessary for portraiture.... but would be very nice for birding.

So, I'd say you should look at lenses first. But I'm not sure the 85/1.2 is "necessary". It's big, heavy, expensive ($1900 right now), and slower focusing. Lovely bokeh, though... if you really need it.

Alternatives Include:

- Canon 85/1.8 USM.... much more compact and faster focusing.... $350 + hood presently
- Sigma 85/1.4 HSM "Art".... relatively large and heavy, 2/3 stop faster than f1.8, 2/3 stop slower than f1.2.... currently $1200
- New Tamron 85/1.8 USD V"VC".... larger than the Canon f1.8, but not as big as the f1.2 or Sigma f1.4. Appears to have very nice bokeh. Only 85mm with stabilization.... $750.

The Canon 135/2L is another superb portrait lens on full frame. It's now a relatively old design, but still has lovely image quality. $1000.

Used wide open or nearly so at portrait distances, the 135/2L has a really dreamy look. But stopped down a bit it gets really sharp. It's also quite fast focusing, so can be useful for sports/action shooting. (It also works really well with a quality 1.4X teleconverter, very ossibly making a 200/2.8 prime unnecessary. Of course, that's not a consideration here, since you already have 70-200/2.8.)

Personally, if it were me I'd go for a combination of the 135mm together with one of the less expensive 85mm (Well, actually that's exactly what I did.... I use the Canon 85/1.8 and 135/2L, but I'd be tempted by the Tamron 85mm, if I were buying the lenses today).

If I were a wedding photographer, I'd want the 85/1.2L II, most likely in combination with the 50/1.2L. However, for other types of portraiture I just don't see the need to spend the extra for f1.2 lenses. I rarely use larger than f2, in fact.

I do prefer prime lenses to zooms, for post portrait work. Especially compared to the "big white" Canon zooms, all the above primes smaller and less noticeable or intimidating when shooting candid shots and amateur subjects.


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FTb
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Nov 06, 2016 14:23 |  #9

The nice thing about the 85mm f1.2 is not just the fast speed and great bokeh, but it has a lovely, natural clarity to it at all apertures. Some might attribute it to good micro contrast. I'm not certain of the reason but that lens produces consistently beautiful results.

I have and love the 70-200mm f2.8 zoom too. At 200mm the boheh can be really nice. But at shorter focal lengths I'm not as crazy about it and I almost always prefer the 85mm prime.

I'd get the 85mm f1.2.


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gqllc007
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Nov 06, 2016 20:03 |  #10

I have the 85 1.2 II and the 135 2 along with the 85 1.8. The 85 1.2 is very specialized, large slow focusing lens. I have had much joy and much frustration learning how to use this lens. The 135 2 is marvelous. I use that 95% of the time. The 85 1.8 is handy as well. I have found the 135 2 to be the ticket for me.




  
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FTb
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Nov 07, 2016 01:16 as a reply to  @ gqllc007's post |  #11

The 135mm f2 is a terrific lens and probably my second most used after the 85mm f1.2. It just requires more room to use and another stop of light compared to the 85mm. For flash, probably not too important, but for natural light stuff that one stop can be critical.

Yesterday I posted 2 shots in the G&N section that were done with the 85mm. Neither would have been possible with the 135mm because they were both interior shots and I couldn't have backed up any farther.

https://photography-on-the.net …/showthread.php​?t=1470300


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Luxx
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Nov 07, 2016 07:36 |  #12

Someone might comment on the 85 1.2 ii focus speed with a 5dii. I had a 85 1.2 i for awhile and was essentially unable to get shots wide open with a 6d of anyone under 12yo. By the time I would focus and recompose they would have moved. Very slow focusing.




  
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MatthewK
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Nov 07, 2016 07:46 |  #13

Since portraits are your main focus, I vote to go with the 85L II. It's one of the few lenses that made my jaw drop the first time using it.

Get the 85L refurb or used. Shoot it alongside your 70-200 and see if it makes an appreciable difference in your work. If it ends up not working for you, sell it with minimal loss.

I can bet that most everyone will disagree with the following, but here it goes: if you end up loving the 85L and can part with the 70-200, and you want to do "easier" bird shots: I'd sell the 70-200, + use the cash saved from buying refurb/used 85L (vs. new), = get the 100-400 II. The tough part there is that the 70-200 is the quintessential work-horse lens that does everything well. When it came down to it, I couldn't part with mine.


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Nov 07, 2016 13:11 |  #14

Having just been playing with the blur size comparison chart for a post in another thread, I will say that the 85mm f/1.2 offers the maximum blur levels at closer background distances than pretty much any other fast prime you might want to pick, including the 135mm and 200mm f/2s and even the 400mm f/2.8, when framing both a head shot


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So if you will be working in the studio, or just indoors, the 85mm offers a decent working distance, and very good blur levels.

Alan

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Nov 09, 2016 07:17 |  #15

I found the 5D3 to be better IQ at higher ISOs, and also just a better look overall than the 5D2, giving me more of that 5D classic "magic" back that the 5D2 seemed to lack.

Also, the 85 1.8 provides very close to the same kind of portrait quality you would get from the 1.2L, in cases where you won't be shooting wide open. Shooting a closer portrait at f1.2 may actually yield strange results where only parts of the face are in focus, etc and you may find yourself at f1.8 or more. In these cases, the 1.2L isn't worth $1000 more than the 1.8.

An upgrade to the 5D3 and the 85 1.8 would be a very nice thing. That would be a killer combination for portraits, keep your 5D2 as a backup.

An alternative to this would be a 6D and the 85 1.8 and the 135L. With portraiture, you may not need the AF system on the 5D3, saving you some additional cash, providing you a 2nd lens for your budget. If you want to build your lens collection for portraits but also get a better camera, this would be the route I would head toward.


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Love portrait photography: with 2000$, should i buy a 5d mark iii or 85mm f/1.2 II?
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