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Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
320 537612 Dec 30, 2022
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $350.43
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.90
9.43
9.4
ef85mmf_18usm_1_

Specifications:
A highly practical medium telephoto lens with superb delineation and portability. Images are sharp and clear at all apertures. Through computer simulations, the lens has been designed to give beautiful background blur. Since the front lens group does not rotate during focusing special filter effects are not affected.


 


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foxorian
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Registered: Jun 5, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jul 2, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $338.99 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Excellent image quality even at É/1.8. Sharp images, no visible vignetting, great color and contrast. Depth of field obtained is spectacular. Lightweight yet feels like a solid brick of glass in your hand. Works great for night time candid shots.
Cons:
Some purple fringing at É/1.8, though disappears quickly at smaller apertures. No included hood, which is recommended to own for this lens.

I don't think this lens has come off my camera since I bought it. This is one of those lenses that everyone should own at some point, like a good 50mm prime. There's something about this lens that when you hold it in your hand, you think "Damn, that's pretty solid..." It's got a good weight to it, but not too heavy at all. The pictures this thing produces have superb sharpness, contrast, and little flaring. The depth of field this lens offers is very thin, allowing you to obtain tremendous fore and background blur. This makes this lens ideal for portraits and mid-telephoto photography.

Lenses like this go well with a manual split-prism focusing screen if you have one for your camera.

The price of the lens isn't bad either -- another reason any person with an EOS should eventually buy one. I bought mine from Tri-State for $338.99 along with the hood for $25.99. I can recommend buying the hood for this lens since it will protect the front element much better than a potentially optic-damaging filter. The hood is also easy to quickly attach and is basically a long, tough cylinder that extends off the front.


EXAMPLES taken with my EOS 40D:
- Full size [untouched] image to show sharpness:
http://flickr.com/photos/fox-orian/2597745357/sizes/o/

- EF 85mm É/1.8 Gallery:
http://flickr.com/photos/fox-orian/sets/72157605504681711/


Jul 2, 2008
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Deb0.friday
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Registered: Jun 10, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 10, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $360.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Best lens in my arsenal! Silent, very fast and accurate focusing! Sharp wide open.
Cons:
None whatsoever!

This is absolutely amazing for the price! I love everything about it. It's sharp wide open and it's bokeh is buttery smooth! On my 400D , the images were superb, and on my 40D they are now amazing!

I don't use it often as it's long on a 1.6 crop, but I'm still trying keep from selling it, its' just that good!


Jun 10, 2008
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rex07734
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Registered: Jan 16, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 50
Review Date: Jun 3, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $300.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: The lens is just awesome. By far the sharpest lens in my bag
Cons:
None



Jun 3, 2008
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aladyforty
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Registered: Feb 3, 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 2027
Review Date: Jun 3, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Great detail, great build, fast focus in low light very sharp images, price
Cons:
No hood included

This lens is a real gem and has saved me in low light a few times. The images are sharp even wide open. It compares favourably with my L lenses. There is not much to dislike about this lens. For the price it canít be beaten.

Jun 3, 2008
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philber
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Registered: May 20, 2008
Location: France
Posts: 10289
Review Date: May 25, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Great IQ. Low price for such great IQ. Did I mention IQ?
Cons:
Slightly bulkier than I would like. The existence of an even better 85mm prime (but much more expensive)

My second prime after the wonderful 50mm 1.4. These 2 lenses produce much better pictures than my hideously expensive 24-70 2.8L zoom. So they now get most of the use. Even my shop was shocked at the difference in picture quality on casual shots taken right from the shop floor. So good that I ordered a 24mm 2.8, and am thinking of getting the 135mm 2.0. Then it may be bye-bye time for my zoom lenses.

May 25, 2008
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toguko
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Registered: May 24, 2008
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 25, 2008 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

Pros: f/1.8, fast AF, brilliant bokeh, proce, superb IQ, low price
Cons:
0.85m min length from subject, AF is lost in low light
May 25, 2008
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toguko
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Registered: May 24, 2008
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 24, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: f/1.8, fast AF, brilliant bokeh, proce, superb IQ
Cons:
0.85m min length from subject, AF is lost in low light

Brilliant for street photography portraits. You need lots of space when shooting portraits indoor (when not on full frame).

May 24, 2008
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Bert 1969
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Registered: May 13, 2008
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 16, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $380.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, fast, good colours overall good performance.
Cons:
For this price not really

For this price it is a very good lens, many be a little CA but not really a problem.
Very fast AF. Sharp at f/2.8.
What can I say, for this price it is a top performer.
Wished some of my zoom L-lenses were as sharp as this one on f/2.8


May 16, 2008
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klinker
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Registered: May 14, 2008
Location: Germany
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 14, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: really fast USM AF, sharp, bright, compact,lightweigt,
Cons:
You need much space to the subject, depending on the construction. so its not really a negativ aspect

You have to consider that you need long distances to the subjects. 80cm minimum focusdistance

Thats why I sold it. It was to much for me.


May 14, 2008
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NoGood
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Registered: Aug 13, 2006
Location: Belgium
Posts: 6
Review Date: May 13, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Bokeh, sharpness, build quality, color, manual focus, price.
Cons:
Indoor AF, fringing/CA.

Pros:
====

* Bokeh: Cream-machine. Backgrounds disappear right in front of your eyes, and become dreamy glows of color.
* Sharpness: Good sharpness right from 1.8, excellent from 2.8 and higher.
* Build Quality: not much left to wish for here; metal mount, very solidly built, no moving parts ... Maybe the focus ring could be a little bit more damped.
* Color: warm, saturated colors.
* Manual focus: this actually is a lens i can (have to ...) use to focus manually on my 400D Smile
* Price: This lens is worth every Euro out of 335!

Cons:
====

* Indoor AF: i just went to a three-day party to take pictures, and i often used this lens. About the only real problem i had was focusing in dark environments. It was or slow, or hunted and didn't find focus. My EF-S 17-55 was A LOT faster, and I often had to switch to it.
* Fringing/CA: this is a bit of an issue, in almost any high contrast situation you get very clear CA's and/or fringing.


May 13, 2008
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YYClickit
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Registered: Jun 13, 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 12, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $519.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Fast focus, light, good focal length, inexpensive.
Cons:
Less sharp wide open, min focal distance could be closer.

This is a great little lens. I debated long and hard about getting the 135 f/2L or this lens. I finally settled on the 85 for two reasons, the first being the focal length on my 1.6x camera and the second being the price.

On a 1.6x, this lens is long indoors. For waist-up type portraits, you're looking at being ~5m away from your subject.

After a few hundred frames I'm fairly impressed with this lens, and it certainly lives up to most of the hype. The bokeh is very pleasing. The colour and contrast don't quite seem to match my L lenses, but that can be 'fixed'...

This lens focuses very quickly, is inconspicuous and is extremely sharp after around 2.2-2.5+. I'm finding my shots at 1.8-2.0 are soft, although my focus may not have been perfect.

On a full frame camera I would buy the 135 in a heartbeat, but with my 1.6x this lens will be on my camera often.


May 12, 2008
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CrissX
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Registered: Sep 29, 2004
Location: Romania
Posts: 2
Review Date: May 5, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, great bokeh,lightweight,fast enough,best for portrets, 1.8,
Cons:
Lens hood don't fit so tight, CA at 1.8 2.0.



May 5, 2008
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jj sach md
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Registered: Jan 22, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 42
Review Date: Apr 28, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Lightweight, fast in all aspects, compact, price
Cons:
It not the 85L!

Absolutely superb prime lens which I have had for several years. At the time of purchase I had the choice of purchasing the 85L f1.2 but after a hands-on, I could not justify the price of the L - mainly let down by the slow focus. The 85 f1.8 is a great lens with fast focusing and helps to produce great quality of photos. I have used this lens for weddings, music and arts performances. No doubt the 85L is in a league of its own but you just can't overlook this lens based on all round performance, quality and price.

Apr 28, 2008
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Chris Fawkes
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Registered: Feb 1, 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 4267
Review Date: Apr 26, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, 1.8
Cons:
Apr 26, 2008
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Michael Watt
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Registered: Jan 21, 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 25, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Cost, relatively more affordable then the 85 1.2 L, Light, quick focus, still very fast at 1.8
Cons:
A bit soft at 1.8

I drooled over the Canon 85 1.2 L. My hand hovered over the credit card ready to order. Stopped, decided I didnít want to die. My wife would kill me when she saw the credit bill. Iím sure many a man has settled for the marriage saving 85 1.8. Ok it is not huge or sporting pretty a red ring, but if used wisely, combined with understanding of the optical limitations of apertures larger then 2.8 this lens can be just as much fun it bed. Enough about marriage.

Having purchased and used this lens, I am now thankful that I didnít go down the ĎLí path. I donít doubt the 85 L is a fine lens but I do debate if it is worth the thousands for an extra f stop.

I found that using this lens that the closer the subject the more prone it becomes to focusing error, especially using large apertures greater then f2. Depth of field (DOF) is razor thin. At times I found this demanding especially with a moving subject. Although this lens ( or any lens) can only focus on a two dimensional plane the circles of confusion are much smaller, the further the subject. To create the pleasing bokeh (background blur quality) a large aperture combined with a close subject is required. This combination I find difficult. At times I even had to resort to careful manual focus to hit the mark. If you are prepared for careful methodical work beautiful captures can be obtained with this lens.

example : http://www.flickr.com/photos/mw_photography/2420111589/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/mw_photography/2373204362/


Apr 25, 2008
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kawter2
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Registered: Sep 10, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 168
Review Date: Apr 22, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, fast, fast focus, great contrast, solid build, not to heavy,
Cons:
could be a tad tad sharper at 1.8

I shoot with this as my primary portrait lens and i love it. I have been tempted to swap it out for the 1.2 L but A: i don't want to put that brick in my bag, and b: if i beat this one up, I can just go pick up another one to replace it.

See here http://www.ericjphotography.com/blog


Apr 22, 2008
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Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
320 537612 Dec 30, 2022
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $350.43
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.90
9.43
9.4
ef85mmf_18usm_1_


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