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New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎09-21-2015

85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II

I have a Canon 5d Mark II with a Canon 50mm f1.8, Canon 35mm f2 and Tamrom 28-75 f28 lens. I am a portrait and wedding photographer shooting nearlu 90% of time with natural light. I'm on a tight budget €300 or less and wondering which lens would be a better addition to my kit, an 85mm, 100mm or 135mm? I am looking at Canon EF 85mm f1.8 USM lens as it's budget friendly and looks like a really nice piece, however I'm wondering if with hte Tamron going to 75mm would a 100mm or more be a better addition? 

Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,967
Registered: ‎02-26-2015

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II


@samanathaconlon wrote:

I have a Canon 5d Mark II with a Canon 50mm f1.8, Canon 35mm f2 and Tamrom 28-75 f28 lens. I am a portrait and wedding photographer shooting nearlu 90% of time with natural light. I'm on a tight budget €300 or less and wondering which lens would be a better addition to my kit, an 85mm, 100mm or 135mm? I am looking at Canon EF 85mm f1.8 USM lens as it's budget friendly and looks like a really nice piece, however I'm wondering if with hte Tamron going to 75mm would a 100mm or more be a better addition? 


 

Your zoom lens already covers 75mm so I would go with a longer lens. The EF 100mm f/2 USM as a minimum.

New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎09-21-2015

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II

great thanks! 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,815
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II

I own the EF 135mm f/2L and it is a fantastic lens.  Just be aware that 135mm focal length means you may have to step back a bit from your subject to frame them (especially if the "subject" is a group.)  The look you get is fantastic as these lenses can really blur out the background in ways very few other lenses can achieve.

 

I have not personally used the 100mm f/2.  

 

You could certainly rent the lenses to evaluate them.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
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Posts: 11,330
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II

And my personal opinion is the 85mm.  The Canon 85mm being compared to your Tamron is simply not even possible.  The Canon is light years better.  The 85mm, for a pro portrait lens is one of the very best there is.  If you looked in the bag of pro photographers that offer protraits I would wager you will find an 85mm, 100%.  I would also wager you willl find very few Tamron 28-75's, if any.

 

I have the ef 85mm f1.2L and love it.  I also have the ef 135mm f2.  It almost never gets used as the 85 is so much better and easier to use.  Yes, I know mine is the f1.2 version but the f1.8 is nearly as good.

 

Also, IMHO, the ef 70-200mm f2.8 is the best portrait lens ever made.  But it shatters your price goal.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,815
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II


@ebiggs1 wrote:

And my personal opinion is the 85mm.  The Canon 85mm being compared to your Tamron is simply not even possible.  The Canon is light years better.  The 85mm, for a pro portrait lens is one of the very best there is.  If you looked in the bag of pro photographers that offer protraits I would wager you will find an 85mm, 100%.  I would also wager you willl find very few Tamron 28-75's, if any.

 

I have the ef 85mm f1.2L and love it.  I also have the ef 135mm f2.  It almost never gets used as the 85 is so much better and easier to use.  Yes, I know mine is the f1.2 version but the f1.8 is nearly as good.

 

Also, IMHO, the ef 70-200mm f2.8 is the best portrait lens ever made.  But it shatters your price goal.


I've rented the 85mm f/1.2L (that's retails for about $2k) and it's an absolutely fantastic lens.  If that lens were on your list it would get my vote.  I have not personally used the 85mm f/1.8.  I've seen direct comparisons showing the images and also the relative performance (the f/1.8 version is rather snappy to come to focus whereas the f/1.2 version is much slower to focus -- but it's typically never going to be used for any sort of action photography so focus speed is probably not an important consideration.)  Image quality wise, the f/1.2 wins in terms of the quality of it's bokeh.  

 

I was shooting my focus target prior to the event to enter the focus calibration information for the lens and even the focus-tests were gorgeous.

 

I agree with Ernie... I don't often use my 135mm f/2 becuse the 70-200mm f/2.8 is such an amazing lens.  Mostly I grab the 135mm f/2 for events (typically concerts) shot at low light because I need a long-ish focal length (I will be near the stage, but not "on" the stage so i don't really need 200mm) but I do want a low focal ratio.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
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Posts: 11,330
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: 85mm, 100mm, or 135mm? for 5d Mark II

"... the f/1.2 version is much slower to focus ..."

 

Yes, sir!  It ain't no speed demon in that regard.  I suspect it has to do with the more critical focus required for this lens. It is not an easy lens to use, like its brother 50mm f1.2L, there is a learning curve with it.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
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