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Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
311 485572 Mar 4, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $350.00
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.92
9.45
9.4
ef85mmf_18usm_1_

Specifications:
A highly practical medium telephoto lens with superb delineation and portability. Images are sharp and clear at all apertures. Through computer simulations, the lens has been designed to give beautiful background blur. Since the front lens group does not rotate during focusing special filter effects are not affected.


 


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I Simonius
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Registered: Apr 22, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 51
Review Date: Dec 15, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: excellent resolution, faster, lighter and less conspicuous to carry than the 70-200 zoom, so better for candids Gives a 135 on a 1.6 crop camnera - very handy for candids
Cons:
Lens hood is fiddly

Same qualities as the 50mm1.4 but a little longer- great lens

Dec 15, 2005
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highway0691
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Registered: Dec 14, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 14, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharpness
Cons:
Nil

I'm used to havinf to sharpen giital photos in photoshop but hardly have to do this only when I make a focusing mistake. Have used this lens on several low light assignments and have had stunning results. Still missing the focus on occasions but manual focus is probably way to go on occasions like this.
An exceptionally excellent lens, beats my L zoom lens hands down on image quality.


Dec 14, 2005
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smac
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Registered: Sep 28, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 11
Review Date: Dec 10, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $325.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very sharp, fast focus, compact
Cons:

This is one of those sleeper lenses. I go without it for a while and then it surprises me with it's great quality when I pick it up again. I shoot mostly low (no) light interiors with it and it just excells. I never considered the f1.2L version because based on results I've seen in comparison, I believe this lens is optically comparable or (dare I say) better. I also didn't feel the desire to have a lens hanging off my neck that weighed more than a Buick.

Dec 10, 2005
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pauljm
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Registered: Jan 3, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 1
Review Date: Dec 4, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: size, wt, focus speed
Cons:
None

I have had this lens for a year, and my opinion has completely changed. Like most posters, I have used this lens mostly for low light portrait photography, but is it also an excellent walk around general purpose lens

When I used it with the 10D, the focus was often subtly off, and I was reluctant to use the lens wide open

Now that I am using the 5D, the lens has come to life. I prefer the true 85 mm focal length that I am not getting, and the focus is now spot on. The combination of FF and accurate autofocus has now raised my opinion of the 85 1.8 from 'nice' to 'fantastic'

Highly recommended with any top end Canon body, with top end autofocus


Dec 4, 2005
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thejaybird
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Registered: Apr 9, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 1138
Review Date: Dec 1, 2005 Recommend? | Price paid: $280.00

 
Pros: sharp wide open, 1.8 aperture, smooth silent fast AF, solid build
Cons:
occasional CA/purple fringe

This lens seems to be the benchmark by which most fast primes are judged. It's perfectly usable at f/1.8, so I never stop it down if I can help it. I use it for candid portraits in all kinds of lighting conditions. It does have some purple fringe problems in very contrasty scenes, but I rarely encounter it and it seems to be pretty easy to fix using hue/sat most of the time.

Dec 1, 2005
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tigersref
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Registered: Nov 27, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $240.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: sharp as a tack, good color, light,
Cons:
clip on hood is a flimsy afterthought

I happen to think that this is a GREAT lens. In fact, it is a GEM. For those of you that are considering it and can't afford the "L" version, GO FOR IT!!.

The only folks that should pick the "L" over this version are:
1. pros who get paid for portraits. This is because the "L"
at F1.2 has greater bokeh.
2. those with money to burn.

this version is said to focus a bit (slight?) faster than the "L" so this version is better for indoor sports.


Nov 30, 2005
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sifpandor
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Registered: Mar 10, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1204
Review Date: Nov 28, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $325.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Build, color, bokeh, AF, sharpness
Cons:
A bit long on 1.6 crop, slight CA

This is a great lens. I did a lot of research before spending the money on this lens, and I was expecting a lot from it. It actually exceeded all of my expectations. I don't have the money for the 85L, and honestly I didn't want it because of the slower focusing.

My only minor complaints about it have been voiced before. It is a bit long on my 20D, but I knew that going in. Also there is just the slightest hint of CA, but this is only noticeable when viewed at 100%+ and in very high contrast areas.

I do not intend to sell this lens, ever. Cars--yes, house--
yes, but not this lens.


Nov 28, 2005
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mauriceramirez
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Registered: Jul 16, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 2911
Review Date: Nov 21, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Small, light, fast AF
Cons:
Flare, dull contrast, typical canon (cheap) build

Those of you with Nikon 85mm's are going to be disappointed. Normally I wouldn't ever recommend a 5x more expensive L in lieu of the cheaper alternative but this overrated lens is just not very exciting at all.

-m


Nov 21, 2005
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Emre
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Registered: Sep 9, 2005
Location: Turkey
Posts: 20
Review Date: Nov 16, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros:
Cons:

actually I dont have this lens but Im confused between EF 85mm 1.2L or 85mm 1.8L
The 1.2L is about $1.100 more expensive then the 1.8L but I just wanna know 1.2L is as well as to pay $1.100 more when we consider the price/performance ratio.Furthermore , if I dont pay $1.100 (that's a great money for me ) I will be able to buy an other lens especially a macro or save my money for a better body .

if you could show some example photos which is shot with using this lens and 1.2L on the same body I will have an exact opinion about difference.



Nov 16, 2005
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Metzarzar
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Registered: Aug 23, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 182
Review Date: Nov 15, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $334.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Superb value for money Very sharp and fast Ring USM and FTM
Cons:
No included Hood Minimum focus distance of 3 feet

This lens is probably the best lens for the money from Canon. Optically it is superb (the other 2 lenses are the 135 F/2 and the exotic 200mm f/1.8 which are in another price bracket). It becomes a 136mm f/1.8 on a 20D which is a poor man's solution to the 135 f/2.

Focusing is accurate and quiet in addition to the FTM which comes in handy. The lens is quite usable at its maximum aperture of 1.8 and becomes superb at 2.8. I have used it mainly indoors in studio environments and its performs admirably with a 1.6x FOV DSLR. It shines for portraits and sometimes the pictures need a little softening in post processing as all the pores and facial blemishes show through.

On the downside, the minimum focus distance is about 3 feet which does not give you much magnification. Canon should include the hood with the lens as Nikon does with their lenses. The hood costs an additional 23.95 and it is required.



Nov 15, 2005
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rklepper
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Registered: May 22, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 256
Review Date: Nov 4, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $329.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fast, Great in low light.
Cons:
Cheap hood that Canon sells to go on the lens

I bought this lens to shoot inside of poorly light gymnasiums to shoot volleyball and basketball. It works great for that. The only bad thing that I have discovered about this lens is the hood that Canon sells as an accessory. It is extremely flimsy and does not fit very snug.

Never can figure out why people purchase a non-L lens like this and then list a negative that it is a non-L. There is an L version so they could have purchased that one.


Nov 4, 2005
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terminator
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Registered: Jan 28, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 273
Review Date: Nov 4, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp, fast focus, nice bokeh, build quality, light weight
Cons:
color not as vivid as L

Have owned this lens for 10 months. Very happy at its performance. I will not repeat all the positive reviews about thie lens again. Simply put, it's my favorite lens for portrait. I also shot stage activities (low light) once - the images are awesome even wide open!

My only regret of this lens is that the color is not as good as L. But for the price paid, really should not complain about it.


Nov 4, 2005
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mrkon
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Registered: Jul 26, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 511
Review Date: Nov 1, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $306.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Price, build quality, 1.8 aperture, smooth bokeh, sharpness, contrast, 58mm filter size
Cons:
colors aren't "L"

The best portrait lens for the money. Though this costs considerably more than the 50 1.8, the focal length compression of the subject and much much more pleasing bokeh makes this a clearly superior portrait lens than the 50 1.8.

The build quality is excellent, very solid build. The AF is very very fast, and focuses surprisingly well in low light settings. There is a LOT of glass in this baby!

This lens is also very very sharp, especially at 2.2 and above. I only wish the colors were a little more vibrant and closer to the 85 1.2L's. But for the money, this is very hard to beat.

Highly recommended as a portrait lens.


Nov 1, 2005
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jgar
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Registered: Feb 23, 2004
Location: N/A
Posts: 1
Review Date: Oct 18, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very Sharp at 2.0 and above. Super Inexpensive, Light, Fast Focusing. Best deal for a lens ever. Should be an L lens
Cons:
Some CA and softness at 1.8

This is currently my most used lens. It is perfect for portraits on the 20D or other 1.6x cameras. I think it will be a good one on full frame too. Definetely the best deal Canon has.


Oct 18, 2005
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Rob_rebel
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Registered: Sep 6, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 29
Review Date: Oct 4, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $339.95 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Tack sharp, Fast focusing, very pleasing bokeh, Not to heavy-but a strong build.
Cons:
None

I have researched this lens for about 4 month before purchasing it last month. I am really fussy, but L glass is not in the budget. It had incredible reviews, so I finally purchase this lens for taking picture of the kids. The first day I got it I headed out with my daughter to Botanical Garden in Northern IL...I could not be happier with the results. This lens not only met, but exceeded my expectations. For me $350 for a lens is still a lot, so L glass is out of the question. But I do not feel I am missing anything and feel very confident using it. I also have the 50mm 1.8 and was wondering about it being to close in focal length, but there is much more difference (1.6 crop factor) that I feel that they compliment each other nicely. Sharpness is my main criteria on a lens and this one did not disappoint at all. I find myself rarely even PostProcessing-Unsharp mark in Photoshop on any pics taken with the lens...incredible. It feels great while focusing and it seems instantaneous. When I first got it I purposely manually focused it as far out of focus as I could just to see how fast it could focus in...is was so fast and hit it dead on (both indoors and outdoors). If you are looking for something in this focal length, this lens

Oct 4, 2005
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caveman_lee
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Registered: Sep 12, 2005
Location: N/A
Posts: 1
Review Date: Sep 25, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very sharp, relatively light weight, inexpensive (when compare with the "L" lenses), fast focus, F1.8
Cons:
slightly soft at F1.8 (but still rather sharp)

I worked with this lens for over 6 months. It is a very fast and sharp lens with rather good bokeh. Given the price, it is a very good lens for portrait and low light conditions. You need to go for those famous "L" primes (like the 85 F1.2L, 135 F2L and 200 F2.8L) to beat the sharpness of this lens.

Caveman
http://www.pbase.com/caveman_lee


Sep 25, 2005
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Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
311 485572 Mar 4, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $350.00
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.92
9.45
9.4
ef85mmf_18usm_1_


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