Canon 5D Mark2..which lens do i get?

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by carrie_smith|6, Feb 4, 2010.

  1. just wondering which one of these lenses do i purchase or are they both the same? which one is the best for the Canon 5D MarkII?
  2. One lens has a focal length of 85mm and one has a focal length of 50mm, so no, these lens are not the same.
  3. ooops sorry i meant to post this link
    and this
    which one would be best? i know one says telephoto but would it really make a difference? or should the 50mm one be the better choice?
  4. As Rob says these are different lenses, basically the 85mm will make things look a little closer than the 50mm and would be considered a better portrait lens. Both of these lenses are at the Pro or high end amateur end of the scale, which lenses do you have already? If you have none then maybe a good carry round zoom like the 24-105L would be a better first buy. If you have no problem with budget these are both excellent lenses but there are are almost equally good versions in the 50mm f1.4 and 85mm f1.8 to be had that will save you a heap of cash for other purchases. Maybe you could go to a good dealer and try a few lenses out, much better to handle before you buy.
  5. Re: your updated links: Those are the same lenses.
  6. Dollar for dollar you want the biggest hole. 85/1.2 = 71mm; 50/1.2=42mm. Store prices are $1930 and $1470 respectively. The 85/1.2 has 170% larger hole, at only 131% the price. For sure, the 85/1.2 is the bigger bargain, more glass AND more hole.
  7. Just out of interest carrie do you still have the Nikon D90 and the Sony A300, cos I think I want to borrow your wallet!
  8. Camerakings is a scam site and you should never buy anything from them. If you insist on dropping nearly 2K on something you know little about (just being honest) make sure you buy from someone reputable like Amazon, Adorama, or B&H.
  9. Duplicate post
  10. thanks or all the info. i am joining my friend who owns a photography business, she does portraits, weddings, bands, parties, etc... and would like a good set up, my budget to start would be around 5k. ive been eyeing that canon 1.2 lens for awhile now and would love to add that to a great canon camera and was thinking of the Mark II.
    Thanks for informing me about cameraking, i was going to buy some items from them but not anymore!
    any opinions on a canon setup for about 5-6k?
  11. Read Roger Cicala's ( take on both lenses. Based on that I will be using the 85.
  12. any opinions on a canon setup for about 5-6k?​
  13. and
  14. The 85L lens works great on full frame. I have that combination and results are fantastic. If you are starting into wedding work that lens and body will perform fine. I would then suggest the 35 1.4L lens to go with the 85 - great combo if you're going with primes. As to the 50 1.2L lens (if that's under consideration) - I would not get it. All of my lenses are L series except one - the 50 1.4. To my eye (when I compared the two) it's just as good as the 50L (though not as well built).
  15. Carrie, the obvious question towering in the background here is, "Why are you getting a 5D2 when you aren't even sure what lenses you want?"
    I ask this because all too often buyers are told or decide that "camera X" is the "best" camera and they think they need it, when in reality the decisions don't work that way at all.
    If we can help you make smarter basic decisions, don't hesitate to get into this topic.
  16. i am joining my friend who owns a photography business, she does portraits, weddings, bands, parties, etc...​
    An 85mnm lens is good for protraits but might not be of much use for bands and parties. For those uses I would want a lens that would offer maximum flexability for the money. The 24-70mm would be an excelent choice. And then maybe add a 85 F1.8 specifically for portraits. However you are going to be doing a lot of photography indoors. So on top of your list should be a good flash shuch as the 580EX. The 5D does not have a built in flash.
    However I would strongly suggest you talk to your friend about this.l Your friend would have direct experience with this and should have some very good recommendations on lenses and flashes based on his experience with the business.
    make sure you buy from someone reputable like Amazon, Adorama, or B&H.​
    That is probably the best advise you have recieved.
  17. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    “i am joining my friend who owns a photography business, she does portraits, weddings, bands, parties, etc... and would like a good set up, my budget to start would be around 5k. . . . any opinions on a canon setup for about 5-6k?”
    With your extremely limited budget I would NOT be blowing $2,000 on ONE lens: 40% of you total budget one one lens is NOT good thinking IMO.
    As you have been “eying” that L lens this implies you are not scared to spend money to get good quality, but to make a good business decision you need to leverage your capital outlay such that you get the best value for money and base your purchases upon expected USAGE and whilst still maintaining total SYSTEM REDUNDANCY because (at a Wedding for example) you do NOT get a second go at the Bride walking down the Aisle if your first camera fails.
    There are many threads in the Wedding and Social Events Forums addressing your question. There are papers written by Josh Root (Basic wedding equipment), Jeff Spirer (Shooting Live Bands) Marc Williams (Master Lesson – selection of Wedding Kit)
    I leverage my lens selection and also the lenses I carry at any one time by using a dual format kit, and I have made many comments particularly on this topic – one recent one is this:
    In the thread above I explain the steps of logic which define how to build a kit. Also contained in it there is another thread which cites another specific example
    Specific to your question, I suggest you consider a Basic General Kit something like this, which is a very good value for money, high quality, yet bare bones and economical, Events and Wedding Kit, as at Feb 2010:
    Cameras: 50D+ 5D

    Lenses: 24LMkII; 50F/1.4; 135L; 16 to 35MkII; x1.4 Tele-extender

    Light: 2 x 580EX MkII

    I have no idea of the cost, but that’s about bare bones – in the beginning stages (For a concert gig for example) of you need longer than the equivalent FoV of the 50D + x1.4 tele extender + 135,then I suggest renting.
    N.B. The kit described above has: limited back up and minimal System Redundancy
    Remember you need money set aside for: tripod, monopod, (heads for same), memory cards, light manipulators (you can make them), bags . . . etc

  18. Dollar for dollar you want the biggest hole.​
    A 100 mm f/4 has a "bigger hole" than a 24mm f/1.4. That doesn't make it a better lens.
  19. I prefer the Zeiss lenses with Canon, especially the older ones that can set the aperture on the lens. I am new to Canon, but am finding the L lenses quirky and not always able to focus manually.
  20. Carrie, The lens I use most on my 5D II is the 24-105mm L zoom. Sharp, not too big and great versatility. If I want a fixed length prime for portraits I favor my 100mm 2.0 over my 85mm 1.8 but both of them are excellent. The other lens I like in that length for portraits is the 70-200mm 4.0 IS. The 2.8 IS lens is also fantastic for portraits but too heavy for me to be comfortable with. I notice that even Art Wolfe seems to be traveling with the 4.0 IS 70-200mm currently. The most useful lens for a full frame camera that you would use a big percentage of the time is a mid-range zoom 24 or 28mm to 70, 75 or 105mm. Canon and Tamron both make very high IQ lenses in this range. Good luck!
  21. The best Canon zoom I have used is 70-200 2.8 IS. During weddings, I have that on my full frame and the 70-55 2.8 IS on my 7D. Best prime I like to use is 35 1.4 and 85 1.8. Final answer, 70-200 2.8 IS all the way. v/r Buffdr
  22. If your setting up the whole system, may I suggest 5Dmk2, 24-70 F2.8L, Grip with extra battery, 580 flash, flash battery pack, 70-3-200 f4L, 85mm 1.8USM. This would run about 5k-6k At B&H. When I went over to Canon this is the kit I put together. Covers 90% of my imaging needs and challenges. Performs like no other in this price range.
    30 years fine art & event photography.
  23. Buy the normal lens (50mm in this case) and use it for a year or two before you buy anything else.
  24. As someone has suggested, go with 85mm1.2 and 35mm 1.4 on your 5D II. I use these two lenses on my 7D, and they are fantastic for indoor events/weddings. BTW, 85mm 1.2 is NOT that slow as it is made out to be. I have used it for fast moving subjects and it has never failed me. If you have these two lenses, you don't need 50mm.
  25. Carrie, with respect, it would seem to me your money would be better spent, initially at least, on learning resources. Perhaps a short course, seminar etc. From this post and the others in your posting history I get the impression that you are just starting out in photography. That's all good, but planning to blow 5 grand on equipment when you don't seem to know the basic ins and outs of focal length and aperture is at best, an unwise move. You'd likely be setting yourself up for a pretty steep learning curve. Add to that the pressure of looking to get paid to take photos of and for clients and you're likely to be setting yourself for spectacular failure. Reputations, good and bad, spread fast in this industry.
  26. I have the 85 f 1.2 but the older one. Despite it being by far the slowest focusing lens I have from Canon, it is easily my favorite lens. I can see why someone would want it for portrait work but I don't think it is the best choice for things that move much. Possibly the ii version of the 85 1.2 is a lot better in focusing speed so my comments on that aspect might be of little use to you. However, I question the logic of blowing that much of your budget on that lens when as a wedding photographer you will need a lot of flexibility during the event.
    I think the quality on my 70-200 f4L IS is amazingly good for a zoom lens. My 24-105F4L IS works as a pretty good video lens with the 5D mk ii. While I like that lens as a travel and video lens, the best reason you would have to buy it is the kit price with the 5D mk ii might be good. (The 24-105 replaced my 28-135IS which was pretty lame by Canon standards).
    In any event, the 85 1.2ii goes for $1,970 (USA version) on BH Photo. The Zeiss 85 1.4 (but manual focus) goes for $1,283 and the Canon 85 1.8 goes for $379. I bet all 3 are excellent. Zeiss was not an option when I bought mine (many years ago) and I think you should do some research between those 2 if you are done just portrait work with the lens. I assume the 1.8 is out of the running because you want the much smaller DOF. However, I have been told the 1.8 is a great lens and amazing for the money.
    Putting it into perspective the 85 f1.2L ii cost $200 or more than buying the 85 f 1.8 AND the 300 f4L combined. It is a $200 less than buying the 85 1.8 and 70-200 f2.8L IS combined. In any event, I would think you would want some reach to do the kiss shot with. I don't know that you can build a wedding kit without it although I imagine you could go rental for that lens depending on situation.
  27. Certainly the 85 1.2 L !
    I've got a 5D MkII and tried both of all, they are fabulous but in my opinion the 85 beats the 50...
    The question is: what is the focal lenght you need?
  28. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Hi Norman.
    "I have been told the [85mm]1.8 is a great lens and amazing for the money."

    It is. Arguably the best VfM lens in the prosumer range.
    "I don't know that you can build a wedding kit without it [70 to 200F2.8L IS] although I imagine you could go rental for that lens depending on situation."
    You can build a kit without it - one example in my post above - by leveraging a kit with two formats, APS-C Body and a 5D (or equiv.) Body. For my old studio I built four W&P location kits and they shared a 70m to 200 between them. I own a 70 to 200 myself and for Weddings I have only used it on a 5D - and I could have covered the same shots with my 85 or 135 using a 30D, 40D or 50D and some quick footwork - and the kicker is have a stop more to play with . . . which means one stop faster Tv - which is ALWAYS handy for that kiss shot you mention (Assuming the same ISO and the upper limit of acceptability is say ISO1600 on the xxD and also with ISO1600 on the 5D or 5DMkII)
    Notwithstanding these facts - your comparison of the cost of 85F/1.8 + 70 to 200F2.8LIS to buying the 85F/1.2L is most relevant and sound advice for someone wanting to build a kit with only $5,000 capital
    The 85F/1.8 at its limits can be seen here:
  29. Should anyone be interested in the 85 1.8 shots, the ones William linked to above are excellent. While I'm amazed at the bokeh on my 85 1.2, it is not an everyday lens (size, weight, slow focus (though granted, not really as bad of an issue as many complain about)).
    Good luck in your choices and thanks for posting those photos William.
  30. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Thanks for the nice comment Norman. You encouraged me to add another photo from that swimming day - it shows the 85 at F/2.2 - I wrote an explanation with it.


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