Which one would you choose?

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by amanda_lee_seely, Dec 22, 2009.

  1. I am just starting to shoot weddings and I am interested in purchasing the canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L and the canon 50mm 1.2....which should I purchase first. Which would be more useful? Does anyone have any other suggestions?I have the 100mm 2.8 and a nice wide angle.
  2. What type of sensor does your camera have?
    I'd go for the 50/1.2 before the 70-200 (Even though I really want one). You already have a wide angle and that 100mm should handle the long end.
    It all depends on your shooting style and how much movement you have at your venues.
  3. The choice would depend on many things--some of them are: what you have now (the complete list of lenses), what sensor you are using (cropped or full frame), and most important, how YOU like to shoot. I would guess there is no answer to the question of usefulness. Suggestions can't be made not knowing the above info. If it were me, I'd go with the 50mm f1.2 first, since I don't have much of a use for a tele zoom (but that's me).
  4. I have the 5d II, I have all primes right now...
  5. Then why are you considering the 70-200mm? And what tele primes do you have now?
  6. Amanda-lee, And, of course, you have a back up body which will accept all your lenses and a back up flash which is likewise compatible, and close at hand (ie: not in the trunk of your car) ? In case some vital piece of equipment decides to go south during the wedding...............and it will, just a matter of time. Oh, I agree with RT for what it's worth. Best of luck in your endeavor. Very rewarding when things go well & it's a Pro's job to see that things do go well. By the way, welcome to Photo.net. LM.
  7. Yes, I have a back up. I have been working very hard and so far everyones been pleased. Got to start somewhere. I think a zoom would be a nice addition and something different.
  8. What primes do you have? While a zoom is helpful for wedding photography they are not as sharp as primes. The 50 is a better lens but not as useful as the 70-200 for weddings. Its a toss up. Of course anyone would always opt for the prime when all the stars are aligned but swithching primes many times in say a ceremony is often difficult. Some people dangle two or even three cameras all with primes from there body while shooting weddings. I found it to be uncomfortable and dangerous to your gear. So if one must be picked first id have to say the 70 -200 assuming you have another lens some where around the 24-70 range to also use. If you have zero lens then the 50mm for sure. It all depends on what primes you already have. What do you have?
  9. Sounds like your reason for thinking to get a new lens is to kick start creativity. Buying a lens to force creativity out of you is a valid thing to do, but if that is the case, why not also entertain a fisheye, or superwide zoom?
    I'd also recommend you rent any of the lenses you are thinking of getting before buying anything. The 70-200mm is quite big and heavy. Before buying, I'd carry it around at a wedding to see whether you love it enough to carry it around somemore. The L primes can be slower focusing as well, particularly some of the f1.2 varieties, so be sure that is going to work for you. In other words, be sure before buying.
  10. By far the best Zoom I have ever used on a FULL frame is non other than the 70-200 2.8 IS. Heavy yes it is but way worth it. Next to my 100 2.8 macro and 135 2.0, it is my 3rd sharpest lens. For some reason I don't like the 50MM series so I chose the 35 1.4L. Final answer; 70-200 2.8IS. v/r Buffdr
  11. Hi Amanda,
    I think highly of Canon's 70-200/2.8 IS, but not so much of the non IS version. If you are already used to primes only, why are you making this jump to Zoom land (not that its bad)?
    I have spent many years refining my taste in FL's. One thing that I have settled on is that while I keep a 70-200 around, I use it precious little favoring the 85 (FF sensor)/1.4 (Nikon). I use 70-200 for portraits often enough though. But I am assuming it is your wedding work you refer to in this question.
    On the wide end, I use (typically) the Tamron 17-50/2.8 VC now (24-70 Equiv. FF sensor) as it works so well, has great IQ and VC. Now when Nikon give me a great 24/1.4, I will most likely give up the wide end zoom (at least for a while, if not permanently) as I prefer things that way.
    So, from the stand point that you probably already have a wide end prime, I would be in favor of the 70-200 of the two you mentioned. In the Canon camp, I loved the 135/2. one of the best lenses for sharpness, AF and the sweetest bokeh of any lens I've ever used.
  12. you still have not answered the question of which lenses you have currently. that is a key question to answer your original question properly...
    ie... little point of getting the 50 1.2 if you have the 50 1.8 already.
  13. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    "you still have not answered the question of which lenses you have currently. that is a key question to answer your original question properly..."

    Ditto . . . I agree . . . and I agree with the example about the 50mm lens

    But there is more . . .

    Taking into account "I have the 5d II, I have all primes right now... I have the 100mm 2.8 and a nice wide angle. . . Yes, I have a back up."

    Then what's your back up camera?

    Because (as another example) if you "nice wide angle lens" is the EF35F/1.4; and your "Back Up Camera" is a 40D - buying any 50mm lens as a priority would be a bad business decision.

  14. I have a 5dII and my back up is a 5dII, so it makes it easy. I have the 50 1.8 but its not an expensive lens and I really want to offer the best equipment. I have the super wide 24 2.8 and the 100 2.8 which I really love. I would like to replace my 50 1.8 with the 50 1.2.I also have the inexpensive 2.8 28. I want to start replacing them with some quality. I think having just these lenses has forced me to get as creative as I can with what I already have. Now I see it gets a little crazy with changing cameras and I don't want to miss anything as far as coverage of an event. I take this all very seriously. As much as I think the zoom would help me I don't want to loose the quality and I also don't want to get into the habit of leaning on that lens too much because its "easier".... I hope that someone understands what I am saying...
  15. What fisheye would you recommend??
  16. I love my 70-200 2.8 and my 50mm 1.8 but if I were trying to decide it would definitely be the 70-200mm 2.8 mostly because it eliminates a lot of your leg work. You have the ability to zoom whereas the prime you have to move in and out and sometimes miss the shot - especially for candids. The only complaint I have about it is that sometimes it is too much zoom. But then again, I just pop on my 24-70 2.8 :) Best of luck in your decision!
  17. "The 50 is a better lens but not as useful as the 70-200 for weddings." This depends on how you shoot. For example, I rarely use a lens longer than an 85mm. So the zoom would be a bad investment for me. If the situation arises that I need something long, I can always rent or borrow. The 50mm Amanda-Lee is talking about lives on one of my bodies. I use it for about 50% (often much more) of the shots I take at a wedding. I like it so much that I tell my assistant to remind me to use another lens. My only caution- Don't get too excited about shooting wide open all the time with it, especially if you want more than one person's eyes in focus.
    I like the comments about renting before you buy. Are you sure the money wouldn't be better spent on promotion & marketing?
  18. Easy one that is. Since you already have a 50mm, a 70-200 will give you some ability to do stuff you just can't right now - like shooting at 200mm. So buy that first, and the larger aperture 50mm second.
  19. I know exactly what you are talking about when you say shooting wide open all the time. I have to constantly watch myself with this. I guess its part of learning and growing...
  20. What other lenses do you have?What body do own?.
  21. 135 f2 L one of canons best lenses 900 bucks and you have one of the sharpest most underrated lenses ever made
  22. "What other lenses do you have? What body do own?"
    Reading comprehension there? How does a question help answer a question?
    "...just starting to shoot weddings and I am interested in purchasing the canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L and the canon 50mm 1.2....which should I purchase first. Which would be more useful? "

    What is more useful is dictated by your style. I would steer a noob away from the 50 1.2 and towards the much more fun to use and versatile 24-70 2.8L. Canon pros all over the globe use that lens.
  23. For the fisheye--the Canon 15mm. Really--it seems to me that you are just looking for something to buy that would be 'fun' to use and don't seem to have a specific reason other than that. There is nothing wrong with that--actually I would love to be able to do that--but some analysis as to which way you want to go next (based on your own vision, not someone else's) would make sense. Why ask other photographers? Lens choice is a highly personal thing and there will be no concensus, even to your question about which is more useful.
  24. Steve, that was so inspiring!Thank you for sharing!
  25. My main lens for weddings is the 24-70 2.8 I could not be without it. I have primes, but I rather use the 24-70 and the 70-200, but if I had to choose I would get the 24-70 first.
  26. And I much prefer primes, and that's almost all I use for everything. So you really have to follow your heart and style and do whatever to express your vision and is instinctive to use. Your portfolio is great so I would just follow suit accordingly, fine eye you have for expression and moods.
  27. Amanda, take a look at the Master Lesson on Wedding Gear I recently wrote for Photo.net
    (Or go to the wedding forum archives for gear questions and look for the Master Lesson).
    Scroll down to the Canon section and read about using fast aperture primes pro and con ... but more importantly to the Lesson Assignment at the end which is an exercise in determining what you actually use in terms of focal lengths when shooting a wedding ... use this to see how much you use your 50 verses your 100 for example.
    Personally, I am like Nadine and rarely use a tele-zoom. For me, its sole use is at the ceremony when relegated to the back of the Church or balcony and I almost never lug it to a reception. I did the Lesson Exercise myself and saw that I used my 70-200 at the long end (140 to 200mm) almost 95% of the time and would be better off had I spent less on a 135 or 200mm. So, for me, that is a LOT of money for a limited use optic. However, that is strictly a personal bias based on my way of seeing and shooting a wedding.
    The most versatile zoom is the 24-70/2.8 which accounts for a majority of wedding shots for most of those people that have that lens.
    The Canon 50/1.2L is more than just a fast aperture lens. It is quite good at suppressing flare (as are many really fast maximum aperture lenses designed to control contrast extremes in low available light conditions). Unlike the Canon 85/1.2L, this lens is not as slow focusing. Most people caution use of fast apertures due to lack of depth-of-field ... however, these lenses need not always be used right on top of the subject at the closest focusing distances ... they are amazing when shot at a more reasonable distance because distance from subject increases the effective depth-of-field of any lens.
    The creative possibilities can be approached via more extreme angles of view like Nadine's suggested Fisheye, or they can be explored via more effective use of available light ... using no flash or a LOT less flash in darker conditions. The combo of a Canon 5DMK-II and it's low light ability and the 50/1.2 could be a revelation ... there is quite a big difference between f/1.8 and f/1.2 in pictorial look.
    I would also not be afraid of using primes verses zooms. Once you get the rhythm of weddings down, it is very easy to anticipate which lens you'll need for what part of a wedding and be there without missing anything.
    Were it me, I'd keep what you have and add a 85/1.2L (a used version I) and perhaps the best lens in the Canon line up ... the 135/2L, and get the Canon 1.4X-II extender for it to give you an effective 190/2.8 for those few times you may need more reach.
  28. Thank you so much for your responses. I think I am just going to go with my gut and stick with my primes. I only picked up my first camera 6 months ago and still trying to find my way creatively while still trying to learn all the technical details. I think it is about the rhythm of the wedding and I get so nervous being a newbie. Having my own over the top wedding 3 years ago has helped me in this new field. I know what its like to be a bride and a consumer.
  29. Hi. After eight hours trying to capture a wedding, being old and tired and shooting at an Inn where I did a lot of weddings I would sit on a table with my now 12 year old non IS 70-200 2.8 (I got it for newspaper sports) and shoot the dancing kind of like i was shooting basketball. The zoom was very handy because I could stay seated and shoot around the dance floor. Yes, I used flash but it is much kinder from a distance, and my customers liked the pictures. I also used Bronicas and Prime lenses for my weddings. Changing lenses never bothered me. Loading and changing film backs did. More recently doing some head shots I used the 70-200 at 135 mm on a 5d to reduce the effect of sharp features on one subject. Worked well. I also was once doing an outdoor wedding where this minister absolutely forbade pictures during the ceremony. He was rude to me and the bride who really wanted the pictures. Sooo, I crawled into a bush, old military training, with the lens and well hidden I fired off about 70 pictures unbeknownst to anyone except to a few surprised guests who saw me crawling out of the back of the bush. The bride was thrilled. Just my experience, the lens is pretty sharp and unforgiving on close head shots. You may need to do some skin softening. So I don't expect, Amanda, you will be shooting from bushes or be as lazy as I was wanting to relax while shooting dancing. I think the 50/1.2 would be great for eliminating the use of flash but I would watch for DOF wide open. Both with the newspaper and in my studio I prefered working with a deeper DOF just to compensate for small focusing errors and so as not to blur things that were not on a narrow plane. I control the studio background with lights rather than Bokeh. However, this is just my experience and they say advice is worth what you pay for it. I rate technique much more important than equipment as long as the equipment is adequate to do the job and the photographer is comfortable with the ergonomics. I did a lot with the Bronica ETRS equivilent of FF 50 mm. That made the most natural pictures IMO. I did use WA but no wider than the equivilent of 28mm so as to avoid too much distortion. Like I say this is just my experience not to be taken too seriously particularly about hiding in bushes. My newspaper training---anything to get the picture. Good Luck to you.

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