Canon 50mm F1.4 USM or Tamron 60mm f2.0 1:1 Macro

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by burstintoflame81, Oct 4, 2009.

  1. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    Just curious which of these two someone would buy and why you would choose one over the other? I realize the focal length difference but do not think that would be as big of an issue.

    I am looking for closer prime ( I already have the 85mm USM but find that many times its hard to get back enough and would like something just slightly wider. ) I like the fact that the Tamron has macro which is a great selling point and it can also be a good portrait lense. However, would you rather skip the macro and have a wider f1.4 lense over f2.0. So far, I am thinking that f2.0 will not be much different than the f1.8 85mm lense in terms of depth of field. I am happy with the f1.8 depth of field so I think I would be happy with the f2.0.

    One more caveat, the Canon USM 50mm would be atleast $100 less.

    Let me know your thoughts. Thanks.
     
  2. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    Noone wants to weigh in on this? Its more of a personal opinion. I just feel that maybe someone will have something to add that will sway me more or be something that I didn't factor.
     
  3. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Well, if you already have an 85mm f/1.8 Canon prime lens, my suggestion would be to go for the 50mm f/1.4 Canon. I have both of those prime lenses, and the 50 and 85 make a good pairing. I am assuming you are using a crop-body Canon, and my recommendation takes into account the FOV factor of 50 on 1.6x.

    I am aware of the new Tamron 60mm f/2 macro,and have read a few reviews of it,and have also seen about 35 social photography shots done with the new 60mm macro. The 60 looks pretty good,image wise, but the critical, serious reviews of it point out that the lens has focusing issues,and the manual focus is very difficult to use. One reviewer said, "The focusing fought me every step of the way," when in manual focusing mode under situations where the AF was having trouble.

    The above is not surprising,and is in truth, a big,big problem with MOST macro lenses; they focus well at close-up ranges, and have a lot of focusing ring travel from 1:1 to 1:2 (about 3-5 inches away from subjects) and all the way out to about 3 feet. BUT, past 3 feet, most macro lenses have extremely hair-trigger focusing, with the entire range between 3 feet and Infinity often occurring over as little as 20 degrees of focusing ring movement. That means that many macro lenses have truly hair-trigger, ultra-critical focusing at normal distances--often causing inaccurate focus, missed focus, and extreme focusing delays, and or focus hunting behavior. This is not a problem just with Tamron macros--it happens with Canon, Nikon, and Tamron macro lenses that I own as well.

    A macro lens is superb at macro photography and close-ups. A 50mm f/1.4 lens is optimized for work from about 5 feet to Infinity. If fast,accurate, one-shot focus acquisition or continuous sequence shooting with accurate focus is the goal, you need a 50mm prime. For macro shooting, the macro lens wins hands-down. 60mm on 1.6x is still pretty "tight" indoors or at closer ranges. 50 is significantly "looser" in terms of framing indoors.
     
  4. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    Thats exactly what I was looking for in terms of input. You actually made me reconsider what I originally thought was a lense I was 99% sure I wanted. I think due to what you told me about the tamron, it would make more sense to get the Canon f1.4 USM 50mm. I could also add a Canon Close-up lense and still be cheaper than the Tamron.
     
  5. NateWagner

    NateWagner TPF Noob!

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    yeah, I'd recommend tubes over a close up lens. No point in putting (generally) low quality glass in front of Canon's great glass.
     
  6. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    Well, I meant specifically the Canon 250d close up lense designed for use on their lenses. Its not a closeup filter its got two glass elements in it. I just ordered one of those and the 50mm f1.4.
     
  7. NateWagner

    NateWagner TPF Noob!

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    Well, I hope that works out well for you. I would still prefer the glasslessness of tubes, but I'm sure this will be fine as well.
     
  8. burstintoflame81

    burstintoflame81 TPF Noob!

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    I will let you guys know what I think. The lense should be here soon but the close up lense will not be here for atleast a couple weeks. BHphoto is closed for a week. Some screwy holiday.
     

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