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Canon 50mm f1.4 versus Canon 50mm f1.8

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trivets12
trivets12  101149 forum posts
2 Aug 2006 - 9:10 AM

I've been looking at these two lenses and would be grateful for your advice/opinions between the two?
Looking at them on paper it seems such a small difference between 1.4 and 1.8 but the price is a big difference. I would be using it primarily for wedding portraiture, and good background blur is quite important.
Is the extra expense going to show in the final print as, afterall, the end result is what matters the most?
Thanks for your help,
Trudy

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2 Aug 2006 - 9:10 AM

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JohnHawthorne

The 1.4 is much better built and is more likely to last longer and more able to withstand knocks, etc. The price difference you pay is going towards the build quality more than the final result.

JohnHawthorne

Oh, and have a look at the lens reviews on Photodo - check here

deviant
deviant  103024 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 9:19 AM

The 50mm f/1.4 has better build, faster focus and Gaussian lens elements for better distortion correction. I tried them both before opting for the f/1.4 version.

The blur from the f/1.4 is also excellent. An example from a wedding is here. (Magicboy's wonderful grandmother!)

Just Jas
Just Jas  1225727 forum posts England1 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 9:45 AM

An important feature from your point of view might be the metal mount of the F1.4 as against the plastic mount of the f1.8 lens, as you may be changing the lens frequently.

jas

trivets12
trivets12  101149 forum posts
2 Aug 2006 - 9:55 AM

Do you mean that the metal mount may cause more damage or that the plastic mount may wear out quicker, Jas? The lens will be mounted on a 20D or 350D.
Trudy

deviant
deviant  103024 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 10:01 AM

Very true. Was also a deciding factor for me so I should have mentioned.
D

u08mcb
u08mcb  105817 forum posts
2 Aug 2006 - 10:18 AM

1.4 has more aperture blades than the 1.8 so less angular out of focus highlights

Just Jas
Just Jas  1225727 forum posts England1 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 10:26 AM

I mean that the plastic mount is more likely to wear - become sloppy in fit etc.

The metal mount is more durable and will be a better, more consistant fit.

jas

onewildworld
2 Aug 2006 - 10:33 AM

Jas makes an interesting point about the metal vs plastic mount - certainly you'd assume the metal is stronger (which it probably is, but that doesn't mean the plastic is weak) so let's assume this is the case and that the plastic mount is likely to break more easily.
For the price of the 1.4, you could replace the 1.8 lens almost three times if you had to before meeting the cost of the 1.4.

That said, I own a 1.4 version as I wanted the extra stop for low light shooting.

Both lenses are very good. The main descision should be whether you want the extra stop for low light work or not. Oh, and whether you want to spend the extra money or put it towards something else you might need....!

Dave

deviant
deviant  103024 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 10:44 AM

As it's for weddings I'd slightly disagree with the above.
In f/1.4 version.

Pros:
Image quality is better due to the two gausian elements.
Focus is faster due to ring USM and has full time manual
Bokeh is better due to 8 diaphragm blades not 5
Less light fall off
Less flare
Better colour

Cons:
More expensive
Slight barrel distortion compared to f/1.8 version
(Correctable in PS CS)

Info is detailed here with examples

conrad
conrad  910873 forum posts116 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 10:46 AM

The 1.8 is rather noisy.

Coleslaw
Coleslaw e2 Member 813402 forum postsColeslaw vcard Wales28 Constructive Critique Points
2 Aug 2006 - 10:55 AM

I guess it all depends on your budget.
F1.8 is good enough for me.

whippetrider
2 Aug 2006 - 10:55 AM

The 50mm F1.4 has the older style USM. It is quicker and quieter that the F1.8 but it does not have full time manual and the barrel still extends during focus.

Jeff

trivets12
trivets12  101149 forum posts
2 Aug 2006 - 11:03 AM

Thanks, everybody, for your advice. Much appreciated,
Trudy

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