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  Reviews by: Pavel  

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Nikon 20mm f/2.8D AF Nikkor

1913NAS_180
Review Date: Jan 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $360.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: very small and pretty sharp both near and far. good minimum focus distance.
Cons:
not as sharp as some of the zooms like the 17-55 wide open.

pretty good performer and marvelously small. I like the 30mm effective focal lenght of the lens on digital. There are no image problems that I see - but on the other hand it doesn't stand out as a fantastic lens neither. Glad I got it.

 
Nikon 50mm f/1.4D AF Nikkor

1902NCP_180
Review Date: Jan 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $270.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Small, fast focus and sharp by f 2.8
Cons:
build quality is so so, not a AF-s lens and not very sharp wide open.

It's a good lens. I was disappointed in the softness wide open to the extent that I returned my first copy and went to buy one at the local shop. After looking at two more I chose the one that was best but found that this lens isn't very sharp wide open and it has strong vignetting as well until it's stopped down a bit.
The build quality is not bad but not great.
Despite that I love this lens. It is fast to focus and very versatile with the fast max aperture. The size is also a great plus if you are interested in caryability. All and all - a good lens to have.


 
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM

ef17-40_4l_1_
Review Date: Jan 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $800.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Compact, great build quality, fast focus, sharp wide open
Cons:
lens hood hard to carry, only f4 ( but I knew that buying it :) )

First let me say that I am not much of a wide angle shooter. I bought this for those times I need to go wide. I only miss a faster aperture than f4 .. but you get what you pay for. This lens has sold me on the virtues of "L" lenses. It is great wide open, both sharp and contrasty. The pictures have a snap and clarity to them that make me feel good. I don't use the hood very much as I like to pack light and the darn thing is impossible to pack in my bag without taking up way too much space. A great lens at a decent price. The start of "L" fever I'm afraid!

 
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

ef_28-135_35_1_
Review Date: Jan 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $420.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: versatile, fair construction quality, good optical quality
Cons:
front extension of lens results in some woble, still faily large, variable apperture is frustrating with use of manual exposure.

The lens has all the right things ... on paper. I find for the type of shooting that I do, namely people oriented - that the IS is of little value because the problem becomes people moving rather than shake from hand holding. In hindsight I would have been much better to spend the same amount of money or a bit more in two or three fast primes. the 35 f2 with the 85 f.18 or 100 f2 is what I am thinking would be a good alternative for not much more. The lens is big enough to be a bit of an attention getter and forget low light candids because of that and the f 5.6. The lens is quite good but not for certain kinds of shooting that all, and since it doesn't fit my stile it mainly sits at home.

 
Canon Speedlite 550EX TTL

CA550EXU_1_
Review Date: Jan 2, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $399.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Features. Works.
Cons:
little buttons, mediocre construction of battery door, wish it was not as tall.

Overall I like the flash but I don't have a lot of with using flash in manual mode so I use it with e-ttl 85 percent of the time. I works quite well but I am not getting consistent results when I use it as fill flash by underexposing by 1.5 to 2.5 stops. Sometimes it is spot on, other times it can be underexposed or look like full power. I am still learning though so it may be that I am missing some key concept. I hate the tiny buttons. I love the power output. I am slightly dissapointed by the size and weight ( it does not ballance as well as I would like on my 10D) and while pretty good, I was hopping for an even better low light focus assist boost.

 
Metz Metz 54 MZ-3 / MZ-4

452_1_
Review Date: Jan 2, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $340.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Many features
Cons:
was not fully compatible with my Canon 10D even with the latest foot

I had read many positive reviews of this flash and liked very much the idea that with the change of a foot it would be posible to use on other brands of camera. I got very good results with it but several things did not work correctly on my 10D and bounce flash was one of them?? If a more compatible foot comes out I would still be happy to purchase another in the future ( but only if it was fully compatible remotely with my 550 as well now) but as it was I returned it and got a canon 550 which I am happy with. I did like the controls better on the metz rather than the canon.