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  Reviews by: Jia Wang  

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Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM

ef_100_28_1_
Review Date: Nov 3, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: - Very sharp images - light enough to shoot macro work handheld - bokeh is creamy and smooth
Cons:
- may not be very representative, but I tend to feel that the focusing is slower on my 20D as compared to the 40D which I tried on in the shop. - some hunting when i shot in the 0.3 - infinity mode

I used to own the Tamron 90mm f2.8 macro lens a few years back but sold it due to little usage. But decided to venture into some macro photography lately and went to get this 100mm.

I would tend to compare this to the Tamron 90mm as I suppose it's the closest comparison there is in the market and since Tamron 90mm is also a respectable performer in this range and purpose.

The 100mm is definitely faster in focusing than the Tamron 90mm on the Canon body. Hunting during focusing is also significantly lesser on the 100mm.

Sharpness wise, the Tamron 90mm seems just a wee bit sharper, but I think not to the point where the 100mm becomes inadequate in any sense. It better I suppose since the 100mm can also be used as a fast portrait lens, and with protraits, I tend to prefer not so razor sharp images.

I did a test shoot with this 100mm on some flowers and insects. Results were quite good, I must say, considering I'm just starting out in macro photography. The images can all be seen at
<a href="http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/botanical_garden_macro" target="_blank">http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/botanical_garden_macro</a><br />

Overall, this lens is a value for its every cent lens. Strongly recommended.


 
Canon EF 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye

ef15mmf_28_1_
Review Date: Jun 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: - Light, well-constructed, sharp.
Cons:
- Lens gets dirty easily, slightly pricey.

Had wanted a wide angle for my 20D for quite some time to complement my 17-40mm f4L workhorse. Was contemplating the 14mm f2.8L as well, but was way too out of my budget.

Took a dive and got this lens. Must say that it's really quite a fun lens to shoot with, giving me a new perspective to the kinds of shots I normally take. Did a test shoot with it yesterday, and I should say that for landscape shots, if composed properly, the lens distortion at the edges can be quite well controlled on my 20D 1.6x crop factor.

But of course, the fisheye effect is still quite apparent and when used appropriately (this is really up to the creativity of the user), the result is very satisfying.

Moreover, I was very pleasantly pleased with it's sharpness. Despite it's lack of USM, focusing wasn't quite a problem during my test-shoot.

Can't wait to use it on a full-frame body, which would be my next upgrade, should the 5D replacement were to come along.

Here's the link to my test-shoot.
http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/fisheye_esplanade


 
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ef_24-70_28u_1_
Review Date: May 17, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: - Beautiful bokeh - Responsive and fast AF - Solid built
Cons:
- Weight - Extending barrel

Finally got my copy of this lens after a 3 years long wait (to save up as well as improve my photography skills to justify this super lens)...

I must say that in today's world of DSLR and 1.3-1.6x crop factor bodies, 24mm is hardly wide enough... But what I was looking for was a zoom to plug the gap between my EF17-40.. f4L and Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 lenses... Been doing without it for many years, mainly because I uses my 50mm f1.4 to fill in the gap...

Was toying with the idea of getting a 24-105mm f4L too, but figured that I would rather have the wider aperture than the stretch of the focal length and IS...

Optics-wise, I'm more than happy with the quality and the bokeh is extremely smooth... Probably due to the circular blade apertures of this lens...

I did a short test-shoot with this lens at a shopping mall and boy this lens rocks!
http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/vivo_2470_test


 
Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM

ef135mmf_2l_1_
Review Date: Apr 2, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Fast, sharp, excellent bokeh, reasonably priced (for an L lens)
Cons:
A little heavy (but not something that's difficult to handle)

Before I got this lens, whenever I shoot portraits where I need this focal length, I'd be using my Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 EX APO HSM. The Sigma does a wonderful job for me as well, but the weight is a bit of a let down especially when I need to handhold and shoot portraits for a long period of time...

I've not shot with this lens extensively yet, but the test shots I did with the 135mm f2L has been very satisfying...
I've uploaded some of my test shots at:
http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/135mm_testshots

I'll post another review once I've shot more human portraits.