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  Reviews by: Ric444  

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Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

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

Pros: Nice range (24-70) for the 5D Mark II, very sharp, nice tones
Big, heavy,expensive

This lens may not be perfect but it is the best zoom I have used in the 24-70 range. I keep coming back to it covers a very useful range.

Combined with a 5D mark ii it produces very nice photos. I used the 85 f1.2 and 135 f2.0 for portraits and the 24-70 for almost everything else.
Excellent for weddings.

Negative points:
- A bit too heavy for travelling.
- I found that my HD videos come out crystal clear only when there is plenty of light. When lacking good lighting I need to use the 85 f1.2.
- Very expensive.

Canon EF 135mm f/2L USM

Review Date: Jun 2, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,200.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: What a nice lens. I like everything: fast focus, IQ, very sharp, tones. Brokeh is wondeful.

The best lens I own for portraits. The only other one that I have and comes close is the 85mm f1.2 (mark I).

The best portraits I have so far were taken with this lens or with the 85mm f1.2. Brokeh is just wonderful in both lenses. Sometimes is hard to distinguish the results from either lens.
However, in my opinion, the 135 f2 exceeds the 85mm f1.2 (mark I) in the following areas:

1. Much cheaper,
2. Lighter,
3. Auto focus is fast,
4. Colour saturation is consistent across all apertures. The 85 f1.2 tends to lack colour saturation when wide open (but easily corrected in post-processing).

Canon EOS 7D

Review Date: Jun 1, 2010 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros: None so far. The reasons why I bought this camera , auto focus and low light performance, are exactly where the camera failed to deliver. What a waste of money.
1. The auto focus fails in more than 50% of the photos. The rest are very soft. 2. There is very visible noise at all ISO levels.

I got a Canon 7D that has two problems:
1. The focus fails in more than 50% of the photos. When it doesn't fail, the photos are just too soft. I own several L lenses which are very sharp when used on my 5D2. The results are unacceptable with the 7D.
Even after spending lots of time with the micro-adjusment feature, the results were very inconsistent. The focus (including the spot AF) is all over the place.
I used a tripod and a wireless release without good results.

2. There is very visible noise at all ISO levels. Even my 10D and Rebel XSI produce cleaner photos at all ISO levels!
Come on Canon, this not a cheap camera. You should have better quality control instead of wasting the customer's time trying to find the problems on your products.

My 5D mark 2 is far better than this crappy 7D.
Very dissapointed with Canon's quality control.

Sigma 105mm f2.8 EX Macro 1:1 Lens

Review Date: Apr 13, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $250.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very very sharp for portraits. Nice macro IQ. Very value
None as I used manual focus for macro.

What a nice surprise I had with this lens. I used to buy only Canon and mostly Canon L lenses, thinking that they were better than the Sigma lenses. I picked up a used copy of the Sigma 105mm f2.8 macro for a very good price, after reading the reviews here. I am amazed at how sharp and consistent this lens is for portraits and macro photo.

I have the Canon 135mm f2.0 L which is supposed to be the best portrait lens. In a comparison with 135mm I found both lenses to be equally sharp at f2.8. The 105mm was actually more consistent with fewer out of focus photos. The 135mm was more shot-to-shot consitent with colours, however, I paid 5 times more for the 135mm L.

I also compared it with the Canon 100mm f2.8 macro, which I bought after the Sigma, thinking that it was a better lens. I was so wrong. Probably it was the copy I got that was focusing incorrectly for portraits. I micro-adjusted my 7D by +8 units and the focusing improved but not even close to the level of the Sigma 105mm or Canon 135mm. I returned the Canon 100mm f2.8 macro. The Sigma is far better for portraits and I am not selling it in the next decades.

I own several Canon L lenses. I now love the Sigma 105mm as much or more than the L lenses.

Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM

Review Date: Apr 10, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: Not much. Sharp images at f3.5 and smaller
Very bad IQ with lots of CA between f1.4 and f2.8

A very dissapointing lens if you buy it for the fast apertures. At f1.4 it is not very sharp and what makes the images really bad, in my opinion, is the very visible purple cast in the out-of-focus areas. The IQ is very bad until about f4.0.

I bought this lens thinking that it would produce images similar or better to those of the 24-70L and with the advantage of the extra stops. I was wrong.

What is the point of buying a fast prime if the pictures are very bad at the fast apertures?

My 50mm f1.8 does about the same or better.
Do yourself a favour and don't buy this lens or buy the f1.8 which is about the same but a lot cheaper.

Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM

Review Date: Apr 10, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $700.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp at f2.8, Very nice tones and contrats
None so far

What an amazing lens!
I own several L lenses, including the 24-70L, 135L, 70-200L.
However, this lens is becoming my favourite very quickly for the the following reasons:
- the 24-70 is too heavy for a walk-around lens,
- the 135L is too narrow and good for portraits mostly,
- the 70-200L also too narrow for most scenarios.

The 16-35 is just perfect size and weight for all day shooting at museams and streets.

I picked up this lens used for a very good price and in a like new condition. I keep this lens in my 5DII most of the time.

The sharpness is excellent, except a the edges at f2.8. But not a problem given that I have seen really bad wide angle lenses: I own a Tamron 17-35mm f2.8-4 as well. I won't say anything about it, other than the darkness make one appreciate the light even more.

Tones and contrast are excellent as well.