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Thread: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

  1. #1
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    What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    Hey guys.

    Interested in hearing what you all think are the absolute best of the best to put on an adapter and a Canon body?
    My bodies will be a 1Ds M2 and a 5D.

    Both auto focus and manual focus and if you can the MSR on them would be useful too.

    I just saw that Canon has introduced a new 200mm 2.0 lens for $6K and was curious as to how this lens would compare to say the Zeiss 200mm f2 T* Aposonnar adapted to a Canon body.

    I am finding it hard to find lenses out there that I can use an adapter on and prices for them.

    Thanks for all the responses I hope to get.

  2. #2
    Workshop Member ChrisDauer's Avatar
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    Best of the best is hard to quantify sometimes. One lens may have better contract but be less sharp, or have some amount of CA, Distortion, etc.

    Here are a few lenses that I've either researched heavily or used personally. Others with more experience may have longer lists or more choices.
    Wide:
    19/2.8 Leica R
    21/2.8 Distagon T*
    21/?.? Zuiko
    14-24/2.8 Nikon G

    Mid:
    35/1.4 Canon
    24-70/2.8 Canon

    Tele:
    70-200/4IS Canon
    180 (made by Leica or Zeiss - can't remember right now)

    -C
    Ps. Canon's new 200/2IS will be hard to rate for a few reasons. Availability is April (IIRC), and then that assumes you can even find one, which I'm betting would be difficult for a while. Olympics are coming and I think the first production runs are probably already spoke for, but you might get lucky (or you're one of those people who can simply get one
    Last edited by ChrisDauer; 27th March 2008 at 15:26.

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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    Thanks Chris
    I know there is a 180 mm and a 200 mm made by Zeiss both T*. I also think that there is a 180 mm Leica too..

    I am new to this whole put other party lenses on a Canon so bear with me while I catch up.

    Since I got the 1Ds M2 i am now seeing the flaws of the Canon lenses. I saw some on the 5D but not nearly as apparent as on the big dog.
    Now my next step in evolution as a photographer is leading me towards searching out the best glass out there to deliver the best images my cameras are capable of delivering.
    I know that last statement has $$ signs all over it but thats the nature of the beast.
    I am hoping that this post will lead me to the best lenses out there and I can pick the ones that will fit my use.
    Most of the work I do is sports so I will have to use a few of the white lenses for a while but I would like to add a few others for portraiture and scenics.
    Unless some of you know a surer fast, ultra sharp and high contrast lens that will fit on the Canon and still autofocus.. in the 200 mm to 300 mm range..

    Thanks for the reply.

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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    Your concerns may be valid at some of the wider/shorter ranges, but Canon does build some seriously good longer range glass. I have yet to see anything beat their 400mm f2.8L IS, which I use a lot. Same can be said for their 300mm f2.8L IS. The new 200mmm f2L IS could come in closely to their near legendary 200mm f1.8L that they discontinued. Their 85mm f1.2L is also able to deliver some very nice images. Hard to know how much better or worse it is compared to something like a Zeiss with an adapter.

    On the wider end of things, Canon does take a bit of hit in performance, but there are still some gems in their line. A lot depends on what your needs are. I shoot the 1DsMkII a lot, along with the 1DMkII, and I really do not have too many complaints with any of my "L" glass on those cameras.

    LJ

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    Workshop Member ChrisDauer's Avatar
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    You could always get a Nikkor lens and an adapter.

    Myself, I look out at major sporting events and the majority of lenses are white. Not all but the vast majority. That tells me that they are good enough for most pro sports photographers. Whether or not they are good enough for you is something only you can decide.


    Re: Canon's 85L
    www.16-9.net has done some reviews on the Canon 85/1.2 versus Zeiss 85/1.2 or 85/1.4 (getting forgetful in my old age.)
    And the Canon actually did very well in the test. Exceedingly well actually.

    Now a few points to note: 1 test of 1 Canon lens and 1 Zeiss lens does not conclusive proof make. Still, I like his tests and they help me determine what I think I will like without having to spend lots of money on all the different lenses and perform the tests myself.

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    On Canon the 90 TSE is always outstanding as is the 135L and 200L. The 70-200L zooms are all excellent too. The 45TSE is very, very good also, though not quite as good as the 90. The best hidden bargains are the 85/1.8 and 100/2 lenses.
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

  7. #7
    steve01
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    I Have have the 1DsIII and after reading all the posts around the net I was worried that my stable of Canon lenses would not be up to the task of this camera, well 15k shots later...they, for the most part are!!

    I hope I do not start a flame war, but to be honest I wonder sometimes if the people that are complaining actually use the equipment or just pixel peep...

    What I have found is that my 50mm 1.4 stopped down to 2.0 or higher is fine, the rest wide open on: the 100mm Macro is outstanding, as are the 135L, 200L, 70-200 f4 IS (better than the 70-200 f2.8. IS.) and the 300 2.8 is also great.

    Yes if I pixel peep I can see a little difference with some of my other lenses (i.e. 24-105, 24-70, 85mm 1.8 and 85mm 1.2 all need to be stopped down a stop or so)

    Now with that said the wide angle of the Canon lineup is lacking a little (ok a lot).

    In real world shooting, all but my wide angles, work outstanding all the way to 40"x60" prints (even with cropping)

    Steve
    Last edited by steve01; 30th March 2008 at 09:24. Reason: (sp)

  8. #8
    Daveco
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    I don't know about third party lenses, but within the Canon line, as Jack pointed out, the 90 T/S is a great lens that is also versatile-macro with ext. tubes and te. I would add the 50 macro and the 300 2.8 IS to my most appreciated lenses.

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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    One of the nicer "third party" lenses that I have and use on my 1-series bodies is the Sigma 150mm f2.8 Macro lens. This is one of the "hidden gems". It is shorter than the Canon "long" 180mm macro, and longer than the "standard" 100-105mm lenses. This provides a lot of utility. Still a bit too long for short table shooting, but wonderful for portraits and things that need a bit more distance, like bugs. I am not a big fan of some of these less costly Canon alternatives, but for a macro, the Sigma 150mm f2.8 does a very nice job. It reminds me of the Canon 85mm f1.8 that was mentioned above, and that also has a place in my bag....it delivers an awful lot for not much cost.

    LJ

  10. #10
    Senior Member doug's Avatar
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    Re: What are the best lenses to throw on a Canon camera?

    Quote Originally Posted by LJL View Post
    I have yet to see anything beat their 400mm f2.8L IS
    In the comparison tests I've seen, the original Leica 400mm f/2.8 APO at full aperture shows more detail and contrast. Stop the lenses down a bit and they're dead even.

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