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  Reviews by: Jeroen Kransen  

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Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM

ef135mmf_2l_1_
Review Date: Oct 13, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Contrasts, colours, bokeh, sharpness, fast AF, it makes you feel good about yourself
Cons:
No IS; I need a 5D now; my other lenses look pale

I bought this lens with the thought in mind of buying a cheap (second-hand) 5D soon. My favourite lens at the moment, 50mm f/1.4, would not be a tele anymore for portraits. This 135mm certainly is a bit long on a crop camera like my 30D.

As I read that this is one of the best Canon lens, I really had my expectations high up. Still, seeing the photos on my monitor just blew me away. The colours and contrasts are amazing!

The images are so much better than with any of my zooms, that I simply try to leave it on the body.
At the end of the day, having images that just pop out outweighs the value of the versatility of zoom. Don't they say it's the photographer that makes good pictures? Not with this lens, it really doesn't matter what you point it at! :-D

It's totally sharp even at f/2, giving a
beautiful bokeh:
If you want more DoF, and stop it down, its sharpness simply outperforms my sensor:

If there is anything to wish for, it would still be IS. But maybe this lens just deserves a tripod all the time.

Don't hesitate. As you came here, you KNOW you want it...


 
Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM

EF10-22
Review Date: Sep 24, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great range
Cons:
Flare, price

10mm or 12mm is a big difference, and I'm glad this one goes to 10mm. It's amazing to see what you get in your frame, sometimes it seems to frame even things behind you! ;-) Optically I guess it's ok for a zoom, although I'm spoiled by my 50mm f/1.4. I'm disappointed by the amount of flare. Look at the top right of <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jkransen/2578211847/">this picture</a> what the twigs and the gnome look like against an overcast (but sort of bright) sky. But overall I'm glad to have it in my bag, and it brings great variation to a photo shoot to add some really wide-angle shots.

 
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM

ef50mmf_14usm_1_
Review Date: Oct 2, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Incredibly useful focal length on small-sensor (equivalent 80mm), f/1.4, great lens for any family with a baby owning a small-sensor body
Cons:
Some "ghosting" at f/1.4

I bought this lens because I needed a fast lens for our baby's baptising in a darkish church. Tripod or flash would be too intrusive.

After considering Sigma's 30mm f/1.4 and Canon's 28 f/1.8, this was my final choice. I thought that in the long run, 50mm would be a more useful focal length, although 30mm would be considered "standard" on a small sensor. I already own (a.o.) the Tamron 28-75 and I noticed from the EXIF data that I often end up at or close to 50mm with my 30D. I was right, it's just enough tele to make it a good portrait lens, while at the same end it's not too tele in that I can use it all the time in our apartment to shoot baby and/or mother, without taking a lot of distance. The lens is very compact, compared to most zooms, making it very handholdable while e.g. playing with the baby and also not too intimidating.

Shooting in available light is often much better than flashing, at first the softer light looks better often and the flash also scares the baby.

Beware only of the paper-thin DoF at wide apertures. This feature is not specific for this lens, but is good to consider when you plan to shoot at wide apertures rather than to flash.

My copy creates some "ghosting" at f/1.4, an apartment building against a light sky displayed a copy edge in the sky, a few pixels away from the real edge. Maybe it's just flare. I only noticed it at 1.4 and who whould shoot at 1.4 with that much light anyway?

At photo.net, the review of Canon's 85mm f/1.8 recommends it as a must-have for any family with a new baby. I did not try that lens, but I would like to make exactly that statement about this lens! I think 85mm will often be too long at least indoors.