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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    A new Lens for the new year!

    There are two lenses that I want to purchase this year to round out my kit. The first is the 70-200L IS. Though I have the non IS version, I need the IS to be able to handhold at slower shutter speeds so that I can use it more in darker venues.

    The second is the 35 f1.4L. Now I know many of you are aware that I own (and am a big fan of) the little Canon 35 f2. So why do I feel the need to spend another $1000 on a focal length I already own? It all started with this image:



    I put the bride (who wouldn't sit straight to save her life) in front of the nice fall foliage hoping for a nice background. When I opened it up on my computer, however, I noticed just how fugly the bokeh is. Strike one against the 35/2. Add to that the slow and buzzy focus, and I was ready for an upgrade. The 35/2 convinced me that the 35mm focal length is perfect for a 1.6 cf camera, so my obvious upgrade path was the 35 f1.4L

    In addition to the extra stop of light, the 35L has USM for fast, accurate, and silent focusing.

    So my mind was made up to upgrade sometime this year, but the opportunity came a bit sooner than I thought. Yesterday morning I discovered that Adorama was selling Refurb'd 35L's at a 20% savings over new lenses (and about 10% less than what I've seen them for used), woo-hoo. It arrived today.

    First off, it's a much bigger lens than the 35/2 (so not as well mated to the XT - fits nicely on the 20d though!):



    Speaking of the 35/2, the 35L is miles sharper (wide open @ f2 100% center crop straight out of the camera):



    But does it take good pictures in real life?

    Wide open (@ f1.4 - boy it's tough to focus with the razor thin DOF - out of camera, only resized in PS)



    Another at f1.4:



    And at F2:




    Needless to say, the reputation of this lens as one of Canon's sharpest is well founded...I'm blown away. The f1.4 aperture makes it difficult to always get your subject in focus, but it has allowed me to handhold at ISO400 all evening (even with just nighttime tungsten room lighting) Add to that the amazing color and contrast and, well, I think I'll keep it!

    Not sure if I'll keep the 35/2 yet. It is every bit as good as the 50f1.8, and fits so nicely on the XT for the lightest, most unobtrusive combo I own. On the other hand, will I ever really use it after this?

    PS - I just realized that I have a total of 5 lenses that cover the 35mm focal length. I'll test them all side by side tomorrow!
    Last edited by jamison55; 01-05-2006 at 09:10 PM.
    www.jamisonwexler.com

    Canon 5dII|Canon 5D|Canon 40D|Sigma 15 f2.8|Canon 35 f1.4|Canon 50 f2.5|Canon 50 f1.8|Canon 85 f1.2|Canon 17-40 f4|Canon 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS|Canon 24-105 f4 IS|Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5|Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS|Canon 75-300 f4-5.6 IS|Kenko 1.4x TC|Canon 580ex X3|Canon 380exII |Canon 420ex|Sunpak 383 x4|Sunpak 120j x2|Sunpak 622|Elinchrom Skyports

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    8,163
    Looks good Jamie...congrats on the new purchases!

    I wish I could have afforded to spring for the IS version of the tele...but hey...maybe someday.

    Your son is lookin as cute as ever too...
    Ouch.

  3. #3
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    Jul 2004
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    Thanks Don, but I don't have the 70-200 IS yet... That one will wait until wedding season picks up again in April. Unless I find a great deal...
    www.jamisonwexler.com

    Canon 5dII|Canon 5D|Canon 40D|Sigma 15 f2.8|Canon 35 f1.4|Canon 50 f2.5|Canon 50 f1.8|Canon 85 f1.2|Canon 17-40 f4|Canon 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS|Canon 24-105 f4 IS|Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5|Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS|Canon 75-300 f4-5.6 IS|Kenko 1.4x TC|Canon 580ex X3|Canon 380exII |Canon 420ex|Sunpak 383 x4|Sunpak 120j x2|Sunpak 622|Elinchrom Skyports

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    1,807
    wow, huge difference between those test shots!

    BTW what was the aperture used in the bride shot?
    canon 17-40 L, 70-200 f2.8 L, 400 f5.6 L, 50 f1.4 & f1.8, 1.4x TC, sigma 15 f2.8 fisheye, flash 500 DG Super, kenko extension tubes

    note to self: don't participate in sad, silly threads unless you're looking for sad, silly responses.

    "anti-BS filter" (from andy): http://dcresource.com/forums/showpos...94&postcount=4

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    8,163
    Quote Originally Posted by jamison55
    Thanks Don, but I don't have the 70-200 IS yet... That one will wait until wedding season picks up again in April. Unless I find a great deal...

    Ohhh ok...I missed that little part about when you were planning the upgrade. (I'm one of those annoying customers that just looks at the pictures! )

    If the IS version is anything like the non-IS....you'll love it and wonder why you didn't buy it sooner. The receipt will remind you though. lol
    Ouch.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    Grafton, MA
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    Quote Originally Posted by ReF
    wow, huge difference between those test shots!

    BTW what was the aperture used in the bride shot?
    I know. I didn't expect THAT big a difference. The bride shot is at F4 (which is usually where I begin to see the pentagon bokeh).
    www.jamisonwexler.com

    Canon 5dII|Canon 5D|Canon 40D|Sigma 15 f2.8|Canon 35 f1.4|Canon 50 f2.5|Canon 50 f1.8|Canon 85 f1.2|Canon 17-40 f4|Canon 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS|Canon 24-105 f4 IS|Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5|Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS|Canon 75-300 f4-5.6 IS|Kenko 1.4x TC|Canon 580ex X3|Canon 380exII |Canon 420ex|Sunpak 383 x4|Sunpak 120j x2|Sunpak 622|Elinchrom Skyports

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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdi-buy.com
    ...The receipt will remind you though. lol
    Yeah, I know. And the 70-200 IS has well documented Err99 problems so I have to buy new to get the warranty. It will be the most expensive piece of equipment I have bought to date (though I just dropped $3000 on albums for next year). I'll be selling my 80-200L for around $700, so that should soften the blow a little.
    www.jamisonwexler.com

    Canon 5dII|Canon 5D|Canon 40D|Sigma 15 f2.8|Canon 35 f1.4|Canon 50 f2.5|Canon 50 f1.8|Canon 85 f1.2|Canon 17-40 f4|Canon 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS|Canon 24-105 f4 IS|Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5|Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS|Canon 75-300 f4-5.6 IS|Kenko 1.4x TC|Canon 580ex X3|Canon 380exII |Canon 420ex|Sunpak 383 x4|Sunpak 120j x2|Sunpak 622|Elinchrom Skyports

    Past Gear

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    8,163
    Quote Originally Posted by jamison55
    Yeah, I know. And the 70-200 IS has well documented Err99 problems so I have to buy new to get the warranty.
    I have a feeling that since you're in the wedding game rather than rough-and-tumble knock-down sports, yours will be fine - *pats you on the back and crosses his toes while telling you*. Buying new w/warranty is prettty much always a good idea when it comes to photo gear, IMO...this isn't exactly cheap stuff we're using.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamison55
    It will be the most expensive piece of equipment I have bought to date (though I just dropped $3000 on albums for next year).
    Ouch.

    Quote Originally Posted by jamison55
    I'll be selling my 80-200L for around $700, so that should soften the blow a little.
    Yeah...kinda like how selling off my Fuji S7000 softened the blow of purchasing Bigma...a little. heh



    It's worth it once you get that hardware in your hands though...again, in my opinion.
    Ouch.

  9. #9
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    Jul 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by cdi-buy.com
    Buying new w/warranty is prettty much always a good idea when it comes to photo gear, IMO...this isn't exactly cheap stuff we're using.
    Yeah, but the 20D the Sigma 10-20, and the 50 f1.8 are the only pieces of equiment I've bought new, and have saved hundreds of dollars.

    For example (vs new lenses or counterparts):
    Canon 17-40L - Saved $100
    Canon 35L - Saved $200
    Canon 28-70L - Saved $500 (got an AMAZING deal packaged w/a 10D and 550ex)
    Canon 80-200L - Saved $200
    Canon 550ex's - Saved $100 each ($200 more in savings)
    Canon XT body - Saved $100

    That's $1300 in savings (enough for another piece of red ringed perfection)!
    Last edited by jamison55; 01-05-2006 at 09:04 PM.
    www.jamisonwexler.com

    Canon 5dII|Canon 5D|Canon 40D|Sigma 15 f2.8|Canon 35 f1.4|Canon 50 f2.5|Canon 50 f1.8|Canon 85 f1.2|Canon 17-40 f4|Canon 18-55 f3.5-5.6 IS|Canon 24-105 f4 IS|Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5|Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS|Canon 75-300 f4-5.6 IS|Kenko 1.4x TC|Canon 580ex X3|Canon 380exII |Canon 420ex|Sunpak 383 x4|Sunpak 120j x2|Sunpak 622|Elinchrom Skyports

    Past Gear

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    8,163
    I know the savings adds up...but I dunno. I have this thing about paying that much for used equipment. I can't justify to myself paying hundreds and hundreds for stuff that's not backed by the manufacturer.

    I guess I'm wierd like that. Although I can't seem to explain my purchase of old clunker vehicles. That's usually several hundred or thousand at a time with no warranty (although my father and I can repair our vehicles for just the cost of parts.) I don't think I'm bold enough to try it with a lens.

    *shrug*
    Ouch.

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