pro-lenses

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by boris152, Aug 21, 2007.

  1. boris152

    boris152 TPF Noob!

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    So here I am, my two nicest lenses being a Canon 28-135mm IS and a 100mm f/2. Perfectly happy, I thought. Then this event comes along (local X-ball tournament, in case your interested in paintball) that my brother is participating in, and I thought it would be fun to rent a 70-200mm f/4 L, kind of the entry level Canon pro lens.

    By "entry level" of course I mean "gateway drug" for L series lenses.

    The tournament actually got canceled, so my experience is just long walks outside, taking pictures of cats and butterflies on an overcast morning.

    Everything about the lens just has me blown away, and I haven't even been able to load and process my pictures yet. The handling, the speed, the robust quality . . . even the fact that the zooming happens completely internally.

    It's so depressing . . . I think I've purchased my last consumer grade lens.
    Does anyone else feel this way? I don't mean Canon's magic red rings, I mean pro-grade lenses in general. Is it really such a night and day experience for all involved?
     
  2. astrostu

    astrostu Guest

    I just bought my first pro-level lens (35 mm f/1.4L prime), and I'll admit I haven't used it much yet. However, I have used it for some astrophotography, and the difference is almost literally night and day. I can take a 30-second image when before I would have needed a 300-second image. So for me, it's the speed of the lens.

    I'll admit that it's tripped me up a bit when focusing during the day because it's practically silent. I keep thinking that it hasn't focused yet. But even just the difference of having an accurate indicator of where the focus is is a great thing.

    In other words, I, also, don't see myself buying non-pro-level equipment anymore.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    :lol: welcome to the club. The first this you have to do is to stand up and say...
    Hello, my name is Boris...and I'm an L-coholic.

    Pro level lenses are really a joy to use, if you can handle the weight...and the cost. There is a silver lining though...pro level lenses hold their value very well. You could buy an L lens, use it for a few years, then probably sell it for 80-90% of what you paid for it. Or on the other hand, you could save yourself 10-25% buying a used lens. They are often so robust that they are still in great condition.
     
  4. DSLR noob

    DSLR noob TPF Noob!

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    The 70-200 F/4L is the next lens I want. The only lenses I have now are the kit lens (haha) and the nifty fifty. So I'm not only going to be stepping up, I'm going from the bottom of the line consumer (I'd chose the 50 1.8 over a 70-300 or other chrome ringed lens any day so maybe that's more of a smart consumer grade) to a bottom of the line pro lens. I really think it will be amazing. It's one thing to go from a USM lens to an L, but an entry lens to an L, I can't wait!.
     
  5. boris152

    boris152 TPF Noob!

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    Ha, the kit and the 50 f/1.8, those are the same two lenses I started with. :)

    Good times . . .
     
  6. jstuedle

    jstuedle No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Your feelings are not unique to Canon. I got the same bug with Nikon pro glass many years ago. Once bitten by the bug, you just can't go back.
     
  7. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    That is how I was 30 + years ago when I got started in film with my ol'e F2. Good glass but not the best. Granted that good glass would probably be considered close to great now, but not Nikon's best, or fastest at the time. Used that stuff for 30 years with no complaints.

    When I went digital I decided that in the long run the extra expense is worth it since I am very protective of my glass, and camera bodies as well. Not everything is L glass, but those that aren't are pretty darn close. I fell comfortable that all of it will last me for several years. Congrats on the new lens, now you will want the f2.8.

    As for night and day difference, I would not say that there always is. If you are careful in what you buy you can get some real nice glass that is not L. I just could not see the expense for the 50mm f1.2L and am perfectly happy with my 1.4. My 85 1.8 has been a workhorse. But then I would not part with my 135 f2L either. It all depends on the lens. Glad to have you in the club.

    We will post the 12 step recovery program later.:lmao:
     
  8. Don Simon

    Don Simon TPF Noob!

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    Gryphonslair makes a good point, the difference is not always that night-and-day, most notably in the case of 'non-pro' primes. IMO they can be just as good optically as pro-grade lenses. The difference will really be in the materials, the build and mechanical qualities of the lens and the technology for focusing and zooming.

    I'm with Gryphonslair in that it depends on the lens... I try to buy very good lenses but not necessarily "pro" ones because I don't need indestructible build or those other factors enough to pay the extra money; optical quality is my priority. For example I decided to get a prime lens as a "digital equivalent" to 50mm since 50mm was a bit too long. It came down to a choice between 31mm f/1.8 or 35mm f/2. The difference in focal length was not very important, or the difference in aperture. The difference in the construction was enormous though... one was a thing of beauty; all-metal, wonderful feel and attention to detail... the other was simply solidly functional, with plastic and rubber parts and few refinements. In terms of optical quality, the better lens also had the edge... but not by a huge deal, because the cheaper lens was great anyway. So I went for "very very good" instead of "near-perfection", I paid a fraction of the price, and didn't regret it.

    On the other hand, I don't think you could persuade me to go out and buy a slow variable-aperture, or a super-zoom. Like some of you, I just can't "go back" to that standard, but I think that between cheap consumer stuff and very expensive pro-grade stuff there are some great lenses that shouldn't be ignored. Of course it depends on the lenses and the system. If I wanted a tele zoom and was in the Canon system then I'd really have no excuse for not getting the 70-210 F4 because of the fantastic quality it provides at the price. A good f/4 zoom in that range is something which I wish all the other systems would reintroduce as well.
     
  9. Yeah...

    ...ya' know, there's an adaptor you can get that allows you to mount R-lenses on a Canon. If you think the L glass is a step up from their regular lenses, then let me scare you just a little bit more: R-Lenses are another step up from L-Lenses.

    Leica R-Lenses

    But of course, they costs twice what a Canon L-Lens costs. And to freak you out even further, they have no IS, they don't even have AF!

    R-Lenses on the new 21 mpix Canon should be about right... and just wait till the R10 Leica dSLR comes out.
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    "Arrrr".. Lenses.. hehehe lol. Sorry too much wine for dinner.

    Gryph and Zaphod have it right... don't get into burning cash just to get into "L" lenses. There are a lot of lenses out there (third-party branding too) that will produce quality that will blow you away. For me, I've sold off a bunch of stuff (including a few L's) to get to a set that I found serves me the most: 24mm, 50mm, 85mm, 135mm, and two zooms. What remains are what I feel high bang for buck lenses that I found myself gravitating towards the most.

    Good lenses do hold their value so experimenting like I did doesn't result in a huge expense. (Now I've got money to put somewhere else.)


    Iron.. I do hope they improve the ergonomics of the R-series body with the R10. I could never really get into the R8/R9 body feel... just never felt right. I'd definitely find myself jumping an M8 (R-d1 still being a secondary of course)before the R10.
     
  11. jstuedle

    jstuedle No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you want another "enlightening" experience, get an adapter and try some Blad CF glass on your SLR/DSLR. Again, like the Leica the lenses are manual, non VR/IS, AF, or anything else, just superbly sharp and true. And BIG, real BIG. Now that's scary, I don't care who you are!
     
  12. EOS_JD

    EOS_JD TPF Noob!

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    my first L was the 70-200 f4L. Found that I wanted the IS to help with indoors shots and ended up with the 70-200mm f2.8L IS and sold the f4L (although I was sorry to see it go).

    Next I wanted longer and bought the 300mm f4L IS. An amazing lens! It didn't stop there though. I wanted either the 24-70 f2.8 or the 24-105 f4L IS and took ages to decide before going with the 24-105. Another great buy.

    I'm now a reformed Lcaholic as I've not bought one for about a year. Am I cured?
     

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