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Canon EF 50mm f1.8 II Lens - WHY?...

GaryK26

Active Member
Please excuse my ignorance on this, but why should I buy a Canon EF 50mm II lens when I already have the kit EF-S 18-55mm USM one?

Is the quality going to be much better - if so why? Better quality glass? Or is it the jump from from f3.5-5.6 to f1.8?
 

geofftelforduk

Active Member
Yeah generally prime (fixed focal length) lenses are better quality than telephoto lenses! It is a very sharp lens and f1.8 allows you to play around with DOF alot. Plus for around £79 its a must have for any Canon user!!
 

T0MAT01

Well-known Member
It's the wider aperture, it let's in so much more light that you can take shots in really low light conditions.
Just be aware that the depth of field will be really shallow at f/1.8.
 

stevegreen

Distinguished Member
You will find the quality of the 50mm f/1.8 much better than that of the kit lens. It's much sharper (primes generally are). The f/1.8 is also very useful for either narrow depth of field or low light shooting. For the money it's a no-brainer.
 

BananaTiger

Active Member
All of the above I'd say. Prime lenses tend to sharper than their zoom cousins, and most of them are alot faster too. In this case, the f1.8 compared to the f5.6 for the kit lens (I'm assuming that's the speed when zoomed to 50mm). It mean's that it will let in more light onto the sensor making the lens more useful in low light situations. Also, having a large aperture (the smaller the number, the larger the aperture) goes hand in hand with having fast shutter speeds. Ummm .... I'm sure someone can explain that alot better than I :rolleyes:

EDIT: Blimey you three were quick ;)
 

toadoftoadhall

Active Member
It used to be that a slr came with a 50mm lens, usually f1.8
As this came with the camera, it was a bit of an advertisement for the rest of the makers lenses, so the 50mm was generally of really good quality for the price, bit like a loss leader. An encouragement to buy further lenses of the manuf.

toad
 

GaryK26

Active Member
Thanks guys....

I guess that the 50mm will be making it's way to the top of my shopping list :thumbsup:
 

ghibbett

Active Member
I have only the std kit lens and the 50mm f/1.8 II at the moment but the 50mm is noticable sharper. I love it.

Here's a piccie I shot last night. It seemed blimmin dark out to me i.e. I couldnt even see the car through the viewfinder. Tried to focus on the front RH wheel.

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/220/454542379_1ccbdca9d6_b.jpg

EDIT: Oh yes, and I got mine off Kerso (ebay) for about £55 inc. delivery.
 

GaryK26

Active Member
@ghibbett....

Please could you post the EXIF data for that picture?

Ta
 

Brammers

Banned
I always like to reccomend lenses by showing shots taken with that lens. Here's a couple that you couldn't have taken with your kit lens:

topdown_copy800.jpg

50mm, ISO 1600, f2.2, 1/50

If I want to ISO 3200 I'd get unacceptable noise. Your kit lens at this zoom would be at least f4.5 - you'd be shooting at 1/10 of a second - tripod and motion blur territory.
The alternative is flash, which would have produced a totally different effect. You'd also loose the DoF effect.

lobsters_001.jpg


50mm, ISO 400, f2.5, 1/30

This time you could have boosted the ISO to maintain the shutter speed, but the punch of this shot comes from the extremely shallow DoF. Impossible with the kit lens.

bjz3_001.jpg


50mm, ISO 800, f1.7 (Minolta 50s do 1.7 instead of 1.8, no idea why), 1/40

Sometimes even a 50 isn't bright enough!!! This shot suffers from motion blur, but is still one of my personal favourites. If I'm critical with myself I should have boosted the ISO another stop to have given myself 1/80 of a second, which might have eliminated this.

So, in short, get a 50 and don't look back! :)
 

senu

Distinguished Member
Thanks guys....

I guess that the 50mm will be making it's way to the top of my shopping list :thumbsup:

:)... It is serious value for money. Even better at 50mm than my Canon EF-S 17-85mm USM IS walkabout. It is also a very nice portrait lens on a crop sensor.. :cool:
 

ghibbett

Active Member
@ghibbett....

Please could you post the EXIF data for that picture?

Ta

Canon EOS 400D
50mm f/1.8 II Prime

ISO 200
f/5.6
91 sec (!!)
 

ghibbett

Active Member
I was in blub mode but the EXIF data gives an exact readout.
Still, when I saw 91 sec :eek: :eek: :eek:
 

ghibbett

Active Member
Here's another with the 50mm prime:

F/1.8, ISO200, 1/200 sec
455716821_c4b7915847.jpg


EDIT: As you can see I got the focal point all wrong (on the eye brow rather than the eye). Doh!

EDIT 2: Pic size corrected. Thanks!
 

senu

Distinguished Member
It does show one of the downsides of very wide aperture.
Portrait ( or macro type shots) can have well focused and OOF areas close by in the same image. Ok for artistic styles if that is desired. If not the DOF can be varies by adjusting distance to subject or slightly altering aperture ( stopping down a wee bit) .
Certainly it also shows that the nifty fifty is a "sharp shooter":rotfl:
 

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