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View Full Version : Canon primes: 50mm vs 85mm



ret
10-24-2008, 03:33 PM
I am considering getting one of these primes

1. EF 85mm F1.8 USM
2. EF 50mm F1.4 USM

they both are in the same price range and I have the budget for one. I want one that will give me a better background blur, sharpness and general photography experience

and there is also this 50mm 1.8, which is pretty cheap for a prime. would like to know how its rated, along with those two lenses above?

ofc, I m highly impressed by the 135mm F2 L USM prime but I don't think I have the budget for it at the moment

Ben H
10-24-2008, 03:46 PM
The cheap 1.8 50mm is built horribly but is generally regarded as hugely good value for money. The 1.4 50mm is better built, a little better optically and has a better bokeh, so if you want to spend the money, that lens will probably be better in the long run.

So between the 85 and the 50, which focal length is better for you? The 85 is probably a better portrait lens, the 50 probably better for general purpose things.

ret
10-24-2008, 07:02 PM
i have the 17-85mm lens so I shot for a while at both 50 and 85 and i seemed to shoot at 50mm more .... but will take a few more shots to see how it goes

my main reasons for going for the primes would be for low-light shooting and getting bokeh

Ben H
10-24-2008, 07:07 PM
I'm going to grab the cheapie at some point for exactly the same reasons - but if the 1.4 is in your budget, it's a better lens, from the research I've done (I don't have either).

ret
10-24-2008, 08:52 PM
50mm 1.8 sounds like a good idea as you can test drive it

50mm appears to be the good one to start with on a crop sensor, on a full frame, i guess it would be b/w 85mm and 135mm

ret
10-25-2008, 06:25 PM
btw, is it a good idea to get a 50mm mark 1 than a new 50mm mark 11? .... i know that mark 1 comes with a metal mount, while mark 2 doesn't but is there a difference in optical quality b/w the two? .... in short which one is better

Ben H
10-25-2008, 07:57 PM
Here's some info:
http://www.bobatkins.com/photography/reviews/50.html

ret
10-26-2008, 05:51 PM
thanks that was informative. optically they are similar according to that review .... there is a buyer selling the mk1 for about the same price of a new mk11 so was wondering what should i go for

a new lens with warranty or an old one to get some exclusiveness

Ben H
10-26-2008, 06:25 PM
Given the choice, I'g got for the Nifty Fifty (the MK1), but I'd also be happy with a KMII.

ret
10-30-2008, 09:00 AM
Got the 50mm 1.8 MK2 .... now the Q is what are the best ways to get a good bokeh, i.e. recommended distance b/w foreground and background, etc

Ben H
10-30-2008, 09:17 AM
To get minimum depth of field, you need low apertures and high zooms, and some distance between your subject and the background.

With a prime, of course you don't have much choice about zoom, so use low apertures, and get some distance between your subject and the background - when you focus on the subject, the background will be all nice and blurry.

ret
10-30-2008, 09:49 AM
To get minimum depth of field, you need low apertures and high zooms, and some distance between your subject and the background.

With a prime, of course you don't have much choice about zoom, so use low apertures, and get some distance between your subject and the background - when you focus on the subject, the background will be all nice and blurry.

thanks for the tip .... i will start practicing :D

PaulaLynn
10-30-2008, 10:32 AM
I just picked up the 50mm 1.8, yeah, pretty crappy build.... plastic instead of metal, but hey so is the xti I put it on... same, same. Anyway, I got it because I was under the impression that it would be the same as an 80mm on my crop 1.6 sensor.... still haven't got all that figured out yet, boy there is alot of stuff to know :confused:

Ben H
10-30-2008, 10:55 AM
Yeah, I'm definitely going to pick one up - I'm just eyeballing a few on ebay. Yes, it should have an effective focal length of around 80mm on a 1.6 sensor.

Post your piccies whilst you are out playing...

PaulaLynn
10-30-2008, 11:55 AM
You can see some of the pics I took with it on my website...

www.paulalynnduke.com

my clients have signed a model release and are ok with me putting them on the site so just go to client area and the password is Calvin, I just haven't gotten around to weeding out the good/bad and posting the good yet.

Ben H
10-30-2008, 02:07 PM
Some nice shots in there for sure. Love the one with the little fella kicking up leaves...

ret
10-31-2008, 09:38 AM
bokeh!! (http://www.flickr.com/photos/anshuman747/2988451525/)

^practicing bokeh :p

50mm, f1.8, AV mode

Ben H
10-31-2008, 10:07 AM
There you go... :)

The_Camera_Poser
12-20-2008, 10:13 PM
With all my gear, including L lenses and an EX len, I got my best photo with my Nifty 50. Go figure. I'll have to see if I can dig it up. The autofocus on it in low light is appalling.