Getting lenses for 5DMark II

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by john_forney|1, May 20, 2010.

  1. I recently purchased a 5DMII and am happy with the camera but am concerned about my current lenses I am using from my previous camera. It seems in some of my shots the images are not as sharp as I would like but it may also be from user error. I currently have:
    EF 28-70 mm f3.5-4.5 II
    EF 70-210 mm f3.5-4.5 Ultrasonic
    I got these many years ago for my film camera (1991).
    I am leaving for a 10 day vacation trip out west (Glacier and Banff National Parks) in about 3 weeks and am concerned whether the lenses will be adequate. One troubling thing is my 28-70 mm lens is very hard to turn from 60 to 70 mm and will not focus properly at a distance (image is blurry) at this range (60-70mm). When on manual sometimes the focus wheel has slight resistance at points when turning. The 70-210 mm lens works well.
    Is there a danger of my 28-70 mm lens failing on the trip? I was looking at replacement possibilities and I would want get a high quality lens that will last long time. However my budget is rather tight now that I just got a new 5DMII and would have to heavily borrow to get a new lens. I was looking at the EF 24-70mm f2.8L USM and EF 35mm f1.4LUSM lenses on Cannon’s website. In addition to the cost my concerns are that I heard that some of the 24-70mm lenses are not calibrated correctly and need to be returned, and are also heavy. This is a concern, since if I get it I would need a good, working lens in less than 3 weeks and I will be hiking at a high altitude where weight may be an issue. The 35mm will limit me in focal length.
    I am leaning towards keeping what I have for now but am thinking that with better lenses I will have much better pictures (which is why I got the 5DMII). Any suggestions?
  2. The 24-70 L is a great idea ,but I think your current lenses are just not good enough for the 5D2,you really need L series lenses, the 17-40L and 70-200 4L would work well. good luck....
  3. 24-105 is a great do it all travel lens. The 24-70 is a great lens too ( I just picked one up used ) but for me, its a little to big and heavy to travel with. I usually prefer to travel light so a 5d2 + 24-105 and 50 1.4 is my ideal travel setup. I throw in a 270 flash as well just in case. I am loving the 24-70 but I don't think it will be traveling with me anytime soon.
    A lot really depends on what you like to shoot and your style and how much you are willing to lug.
  4. If money is tight you might consider the 28-135/3.5-5.6 IS, which is a pretty good lens and much less expensive than the 24-70, as well as a full pound lighter.
  5. I live just by Banff and regulary go to Warterton lakes. I have had the 24-105 F4 but sold it and bought the 24-70 a few years ago. While the 24-70 is a big heavy lens I love mine on full frame and APS-H (it is less useful on my 7D). I don't really mind the weight (I often carry 3-4 lenses and a tripod) and have never had any problems with the lens - I bought mine new about 3 years ago. If you are going to Warterton Lakes I recommend that you get at least one ND grad (say a 2 stop) and a polarizer. If you like wild flowers etc... you might find macro useful. this year has been very dry and mild so you will not have a lot of snow to cope with. I would probably not suggest just a 35mm lens as you will probably find it limiting.
  6. You may want to consider the Tamron 28-75 f/2.8. I use one with my 5d2 and I'm quite pleased with it. It's a little soft wide open at f/2.8, but that's fine with me as I only shoot portraits at that aperture and a little softness is ok. Stopped down a bit it's very sharp even in the corners. It's much less expensive and significantly lighter than the Canon 24-70 f/2.8 and performs quite well. By all means, though, pick up the Canon if you can afford it.
  7. The 24-105 f/4 L is an ideal companion for the 5DmkII, but be forewarned that this lens has a LOT of pincushion distortion. If your picture has straight lines in it (e.g. buildings), you're going to have to do some lens correction in Photoshop or other software.
  8. I'll also plug the 24-105 for your situation and point out that the pincushion distortion (and barrel, at the wide end) is a real, but easily corrected in post processing. The 24-70 has less distortion, which makes it a better choice for film cameras. You probably don't need an f/2.8 lens for your trip as much as coverage on the long side, so I would also recommend the 70-200/F4 IS. Get the non-IS version to save some significant money if you are going to use a tripod anyway. Add the 16mm extension ring so that you can focus the 70-200 up close.
  9. My walkabout lens kit consists of a 17-40/4 L, a 24-105/4 IS L, and a 70-200/4 IS L. This set would be very well suited for your trip. I also have a 24-70, but would be less inclined to take it traveling. (Incidentally, the rumoured calibration issues with the 24-70, if they exist at all, affect AF at closer focusing distances and shallower depths of field, neither of which will be an issue for you on your trip).
    The 35/1.4 L is a superb lens (I have one), but would limit you to a single focal length.
    Listen to Philip's advice about filters. He lives and shoots in the Canadian Rockies, so he definitely knows what he's talking about.
  10. John, in my opinion the absolute best all-around solution for the 5D MK II is the Canon 24-105mm F4 IS "L". The image quality is comparable with the 24-70mm and it has the extra reach and IS. IF the F4 works for you (Landscapes) then it is very hard to beat. At the short end (24mm) there is some barrel distortion but it is each to fix in any of the PP tools, including the Canon DPP software that came with your 5D II. There won't be any need to have it calibrated (which you can actually do now yourself with the 5D II but don't worry about that - you won't need it). The 24mm end is quite wide on full frame and the 105mm has good reach. It is a very good landscape lens solution. Just that lens alone should cover 90% or more of your needs. It has IS too but if you are doing morning and evening landscapes you can just put it on your tripod and you will be all set (you might get a remote cable release for the 5D II when you are at it if you don't have one). You can get a new one over on Fred Miranda for a little over $800 Good luck!
  11. the pincushion distortion (and barrel, at the wide end) is a real, but easily corrected in post processing.​
    It's relatively easy to correct, yes, but you stand a good chance of losing details on the edges of the frame. If you frame your compositions tightly you have to make allowances for how much of the frame is going to disappear during distortion correction.
  12. the pincushion distortion (and barrel, at the wide end) is a real, but easily corrected in post processing.​
    It's relatively easy to correct, yes, but you stand a good chance of losing details on the edges of the frame. If you frame your compositions tightly you have to make allowances for how much of the frame is going to disappear during distortion correction.​
    That's a very good point. And if you apply perspective corrections (to fix up converging or diverging verticals--something I strongly recommend for a natural look in your landscapes) you lose even more! I've discovered--the hard way--that it's generally good practice to leave margin in important shots that I work hard to get. I might take the shots and then zoom out a bit and take them again with the same exposure, just in case. This is another good reason to use a zoom. (Or, you could use a TSE lens, but these are very costly.)
  13. Thank you for the advice. I plan to take scenic shots as well as wildlife and flowers. When taking scenic shots I often like to really stop down the camera to get a sharp picture at all focal lengths. When I went to bed last night thought I would buy the 35mm f1.4 and carry my current 70-210mm f 3.5-4.5 as well when hiking for any wildlife. I would have the old 28-70mm in the car for wider shots during stops. I thought the 35 mm would be a nice addition and then add a zoom lens once cannon made some improvements. But it seems most of you did not really recommend the 35mm. I see a lot of recommendations for the 24-105mm. A concern I have is that you are saying there is may be some distortion that needs to be corrected afterwards, particularly at the wider angles that I plan to use. I have had limited experience with correcting pictures and when I tried it in the past found it rather time consuming. I would not look forward to doing that with multiple pictures.
    I want to thank Philip for the filter advice. I have a UV filter but that a ND filter will help more with mountains on a sunny day. That balance was a concern for me when there are very bright areas as well as dark ones in the same picture.
  14. John, rent the lenses and think about spending the extra $$$ on your vacation.
  15. 17-40mm f/4
    70-200mm f/2.8
    the best
  16. Tamron 17-35mm 2.8, Sigma 50mm 1.4 and 70-200mm f4.
  17. wnw


    Without a doubt the 24-105mm AND get a good quality polarizer filter! If money is no object of course there is better but this lens takes some beating for even the fussiest of us and is the only lens you'll need to take. Avoid the 2x multiplier if you get tempted - it dramatically reduces quality and halves your widest aperture. The 1.4 is not alot better.
  18. I shoot with aCanon 17-40 F4L and Tamrom 28-75 F2.8 on my 5D2 and it works quite well. I purchased the Canon 24-105 F4L to replace my Tamron and took it back to the store. It was actullay a downgrade because of the F4 and the horrble distortion of horizons, the dark corners (pincushing) and distortion of vertical lines as well. My 17-40 F4L at 24MM is perfect the 24-105 is not even close to the quality of the 17-40 at almost double the price. My third lens is the Sigma 70-200 F2.8 which also works well on the 5D2. If I could afford the upgrqade I would get the Canon 24-70 F2.8L but I wouldn't waste a 1000 + dollars on 24-105 a pro lens that has so much distortion. For the money the Tamron iis an excellent lens. Yes, it is plastic and much much lighter than the 24-70 but it has a five year warranty and absolutely excellent optics with no noticable distortion.
  19. DPP software solves all of the issues with 24-105 noted in the preceding post. 24-105 on FF is just such a useful range.
  20. 17-40mm f/4
    70-200mm f/2.8
    the best

    All of the Canon 70-200s are superb. I would go with the 70-200 F4 and use the cost difference to buy the 16-35 2.8 which is far superior to the 17-40 below 20mm or so, and fill in the gap with the very affordable 50mm 1.8 mkII and a Canon or third party consumer zoom for a 'walk around' in the 28-70 range.

Share This Page