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Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM

ef_100_28_1_
Review Date: Apr 1, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp. Doubles as a 100mm standard prime. Maximum 1x magnification at 31cm.
Cons:
Working distance - length of the lens barrel means that you have to get as close as about half the 31cm to get to maximum magnification. Manufacturers' defect in first copy - as usual check before purchase!

Solid performer as others mentioned before. Good sharpness and color rendition. Great 1st macro lens. Great as first macro lens - opened up possibilities for me in many applications - flowers, still life, miniatures, small animals, etc...

Watch out though - first copy that I inspected at store actually has a visible piece of plastic about 2x3mm big INSIDE the lens. Shame on Canon for trying to waste my time again...

Second copy at least looks clean inside and seems pretty good so far after 100+ pictures or so.


 
Canon EOS Rebel XT (350D)

rebel_xt
Review Date: Oct 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Capable of great picture quality, easy to use, easy to handle, inexpensive
Cons:
LCD a bit small at 1.8", battery status only has three steps (incl. empty), needed a software patch to fix automative shutoff bug, doesn't feel as luxurious in your hand than a more expensive

Been using this camera for more than a year now, about 1,500 pictures, 80 shoots. I use it for shooting pets, people, landscapes, hiking, wildlife; 35mm1.2, 50mm1.4, EFS10-22, 24-70mm2.8, 70-200mm2.8. The camera's versatility is impressive.

Very high proportion of shots are great straight out of the camera. Pin sharp A4 prints, great color rendition. Light, quick and easy to use, this camera has never been a bottleneck to the quality of my photos. Great for hikes due to light-weight and ruggedness (survived many bangs). I find the size the grip acceptable although clearly the bigger cameras will be more comfortable for guys.

Cons:
- LCD screen which is small by 2006 standards.
- Review function is not as intuitive as Nikon's when it comes to checking focus accuracy.
- No Kelvin presets but not much of a problem since it gets it right most of the time, and if shooting RAW not a problem at all.
- dust does accumulate but not a big problem since I seldom use very small apertures.

Overall:
This camera is one of the best purchases I made in 2005. Still can't think of a reason why I should upgrade this body unless maybe the next generation of 5D or 30D comes out.


 
Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM

ef_35_14_1_
Review Date: Jun 15, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Versatility, image quality
Cons:
None

This has supplanted the 24-70L as the walkaround lens on my 350D because of image quality and versatility - morning, evening, indoor gatherings, outdoor portraits, this lens does it all confidently in a foolproof way. Very happy with the purchase.