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Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM

ef100mmf_2usm_1_
Review Date: Sep 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Value, AF, Contrast, bokeh, size
Cons:
Hood

For the money this is a great lens. Very compact, quite sharp wide open, nice bokeh, good contrast and fast AF. There's not much to dislike for the money.

I really like this as a travel prime on FF.

One complaint is the hood. As others have said the hood attachment is not nice. It rattles a bit when attached, and doesn't fit as securely as a bayonet hood.


 
Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM

ef_35_14_1_
Review Date: Sep 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Almost everything
Cons:
CA in some scenes

If not for the longitudinal CA, this would be just about perfect.

The build doesn't bother me - decent focus ring feel, and good fit and finish. Don't think I'd want it any heavier, so I'm ok with good plastics (and this is made with good plastics for sure).

Focus is very quick and accurate even in very low light (with a moderate amount of MA). Contrast and color are excellent.

The CA isn't a deal breaker for me. The other attributes make up for that, although I'd jump at a II that kept the current positives with a reduction in CA.


 
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM

ef50mmf_14usm_1_
Review Date: Sep 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp from f/2 (after MA), Good focus performance, Ok build for the money
Cons:
Focus ring is not smooth.

Not sharp wide open, but it does well by f/2.

Bokeh is about what you expect for the focal length and design. Better than the 1.8, but not as nice as a longer lens. Can be busy/nervous with some scenes.

I haven't had any focus problems with mine, but it did benefit from a small amount of micro-adjust.

The build is ok, but focus mechanism durability concerns me. Because of this I set focus to infinity when I put it away to prevent the inner barrel from protruding. Have had no trouble after several years of travel and use.


 
Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II

24tse
Review Date: Sep 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness, flare resistance, contrast. Great optical performance.
Cons:
None.

What a great lens. The focus and movements are smooth, build is solid, and optical quality is fantastic. If you need this FL, I don't think you could do better right now.

 
Acratech ballhead

57ballhead_1_
Review Date: Sep 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Solid construction, lightweight.
Cons:
Can be awkward at times, due to the design. A bit bulky compared with a more conventional ballhead design.

As long as you are comfortable with the design, this is a good ballhead. It holds solidly, keeps a fairly heavy setup stable. This is a very nicely built piece of equipment.

It is light - good for travel. But bulky - not so good for travel.

I used it for a couple of years, but went back to a conventional ballhead design due to the usability issues inherent in this design. I would frequently find that I couldn't get the framing I wanted without rotating the base, which resulted in more fiddling than necessary. I'm using a Markins Q3 now, and find it's better for my purposes.