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This is a review of the canon EF 50mm F1.8 mk2. Now I love photography, I have loved photography since I got my first camera 8 years ago. Since then I have probably spent far to much on this obsessive hobby. Buying the best lens, so I could naturally take the best photos, buying a professional flash gun that I have never used outside in the real world. So when I tell you I spent many thousand of pounds on this hobby it is easy to see where the money has gone. One day I was on Amazon looking to buy a new lens as you do. What I was looking for was a low light zoom lens I was ponding over the Sigma 17-70 mm f2.8-4 DC Macro, you know this lens did what I wanted it to do and I would have been happy to part with the £300 that they wanted for it. But I continued to look never satisfied as always, I came across a primer lens by the name of canon EF 50mm 1.8 mk2. Now I have to be honest I never like primer lens because anything that involves walk back or forward 2 feet is sort of pointless when a zoom lens could do that with out moving. I continued to look on the web page and there were hundred of review saying “this is a must for any camera bag” and “best lens ever”. So I thought for £89 I might as well try it out, So rather then buy it I ask my parents to buy it for my birthday.
So my birthday came around and I open this present, first time I saw the box rapped up. I thought it was a tennis ball in a box. Honest to god the box is tiny, it is so small. Any way I open the box and took out the lens, weighting in at a mere 130g, the lens caps for both end, a sort of poster instruction manual thing (may be they want you to put it on the wall or something) and that was it. There was not really any protection for the lens apart from the box and a bag, it does keep the cost down so you can see why canon do it.
The construction of this lens well isn't what I would call the best that canon can do, you would half expect it to have “made in china” stamped on it some were. Now here the thing I have taken a lot of photos with this lens, it has been knock against walls, drop on the floor, pulled in and out of my bag no end of time and not once has this lens shown any signs of wear and tear, not once, it is exactly the same as the day I got it. So even when canon build a lens that looks like it came from the pound shop it is still pretty dam tough. There is one switch on the body AF/MF the autofocus works or you could say it focus (just don't expect it to focus on what you want every time) and the motor does sound like a lawnmower. The manual focus took me some time to work out, how to use it there is a focus ring on the front but it is sort of difficult to see as it blends in to the background. You can uses a filter, the size is 52mm and it is easy to change them because that part of the lens does not rotate.
The image quality is the best thing about this lens, it really is. The colours are really good the contrast between black and white is all so very good. If you want better then you will have to spend a lot more money. Where this lens really comes in to its own is the razor sharp images it can produce, you do have to make sure that you have the camera set up right to really get the best out of this lens otherwise you will wast what the is lens is made for. This lens has decent depth of field and sharpness at the widest aperture f1.8 and has a Min aperture of f22. But you will loses sharpness at f1.8 to get the sharpest quality you need to uses it at about f2.8 or below. You can easily blur the background at f1.8 even if the subjects is just a few feet from the background but it not going to be as sharp. The minimum focusing distance for this lens is 0.45m. Interesting side fact this lens can be slightly sharper than even the Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 L USM Len.
Taking photos with this lens is very simple indeed because the lens is so small you basically hold the camera and lens in the same hand unlike a telephoto lens you have to hold the lens with one hand to zoom in/out , the other hand to holding the camera. You don't get that with this lens, Plus another bonus when in large crowds, lots of people close to you, you can easily move this around where as a larger lens would be more difficult even missing the shot you want altogether. One of the strong advantaged of this lens is being able to take photos at night or in low light with out a flash just be aware that from my personal experience with this lens to be able to take good photos at night you need a combination of thing like a pro camera with high ISO, good flash gun when using this lens and without these the photos are not going to look as professional as you might want them to.
So where to buy this is simple because the price for this lens is very similar whether you buy it on the high street or on the internet. I always like buying stuff on the high street, it is always satisfying being able to take what I have bought home, then click a couple times on a mouse button. The price range I found for this lens start at about £70 and go up to about £140. Which is really expensive, I got mine from Amazon for about £89 so just shop around to get the cheapest price.
My conclusion is that this is one of my favourite lens ever, I never really like primer lens in till I got this. I always though that they were pointless, just the old day of photography trying to survive in a digital world but I was wrong and I will happy emit that. In the right hands or any hands for that matter this is a brilliant lens and probably one of the best lens that canon do because this lens has made it possible for people to stop using their kit lens and use a lens that can make any photo artistic and special. Yes I know it made of cheap plastic and is noisy but I don't care about that for £90 I would happily buy another one without any worries.
Hi there, belated welcome to ciao. I love my nifty fifty too, it's so versatile!! I would advise you read through this to check for typos, just to increase the professional touch a tad. Glad you included a photo; perhaps include on in poor lighting too, to highlight the fab shots you can get with this fabulous lens. People like myself may also be interested in knowing what camera body you currently use. Hope this helps, and well done. Diana :)