Wednesday, December 5, 2012

this one, that one, or the other one?

I have loved getting to know my Canon Rebel (T2i) baby over the past year, but I am ready for a little bit of an upgrade. I got a camera base that was nice, at the upper end of my price range, but generally considered affordable (in the photography world) in the hopes that I would be able to purchase fancier lenses when I grew out of my starter kit lens.

I want to get a lens with a higher f-stop so that I can blur out the trashcans in my alley (since my neighbors are apparently not going to be moving them any time soon!)

My eye is on either a f/1.8 lens ($110), or the f/1.4 lens ($339). 
The only thing I can't figure out is, why is there a $200+ difference between these two? 
Is the f/1.4 lens really that much better?

I want to get a lens that is going to serve me for many years to come, so if the f/1.4 will do that much better for a bit more, then I'm down, but I don't want to just throw $200 away simply because in my mind a higher price tag means a better product.

So many of you take such gorgeous photos, so I am turning to you ladies - the experts!
What lens do you use (Canon users)?
Are these two the ones I should be looking between, or is there another one that is right for me?
Drop me some knowledge!


  1. I have a Canon Rebel T2i as well! I got the f/1.8 lens when I first bought the camera body last spring. The lens and body were recommended to me by a fellow blogger who is also a professional photographer. Now I also have this zoom lens (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003OU639A/ref=pe_175190_21431760_M2T1_SC_dp_1), and I really love it. The f/1.8 lens takes really awesome photos, but I certainly also enjoy my zoom lens for a much wider angle and more flexibility. 

  2. I don't own either, so I shouldn't say much. However, the f/1.8 is on my Christmas list. Both give you bokeh, all though I guess this f/1.4 would give you more???

    I know the cheaper one is in a plastic casing which most professionals turn their nose up at, maybe it possibly won't last as long?

  3. I'm getting the Cannon Rebel T3i for Christmas, and I'm having the same issue figuring out what lenses to get. I'm interested to see what everyone says!

    AlyssaThe Glossy Life 

  4. I have a Nikon and I have a f/1.8 and I am totally loving it. It's my first lens after the kit lens (new to DSLRs). The f/1.4 wasn't in my price range but I've seen comparison shots between the two and if I had the money, I would've went with the f/1.4. I am pleased with my purchase thus far though and I think you can still get some pretty bokeh-licious shots with the 1.8! 

  5. I shoot with a Canon and the standard 50mm lens it came with. My motto is: If you can't tell why there's a price difference, go with the cheaper one :) 

  6. Hi Jessica! 

    I have a Canon T3i and really recommend getting the 1.8 for $110. This was my first upgrade lens this summer and I am so psyched about the images I'm able to capture and thinking of how cheap it was in comparison to the 1.4. 

    When I was shopping around the 1.8 was on the recommendation of a photographer friend, and the Amazon reviews say the main reason for the price difference is that the 1.8 is made with plastic and less durable - but if you're *really* that clumsy, you'd still be able to shatter it 3 times before hitting the price point of the 1.8.

    I hope this helps! Most everything in this post was shot with my 1.8: http://jumpingje.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/thanksgiving-feast/



  7. I love and have been using my Canon for a while. I use my standard lens and switch to my upgraded one for certain posts. I'd probably go for the f/1.8.

  8. get the 1.4. do it. you won't regret it. 

  9. I am a professional photographer. I can tell you that the 1.4 is a sharper lens (I rarely shoot with it completely stopped down to 1.4). The difference between 1.8 and 1.4 is not that significant unless you are close up or shooting up or down toward something (this has to do with how depth of field works).

    Is the 1.4 a better lens? Yes. The build quality is better. Do I think it is a necessary purchase for a hobbyist? No. When I started out, I shot weddings with the 1.8 at around 2.2 (the sweet spot for the 1.8). I have had my 1.8 for years, have treated it pretty badly, and it has pulled through. 
    I'd save your cash for a 85mm 1.8 to go with the 50mm 1.8. Then get a 35mm 2.0 and you will have a great trifecta. Also, consider a Tamron zoom. I love their 1.8 zooms. They are as sharp, if not sharper, than the standard series Canon 2.8 lenses for dimes on the dollar on eBay. I still use them for travel as they are lighter and easily replaceable financially. 

    If you have any more questions, feel free to email me x

  10. I purchased the f/1.8 lens and it was the best decision I ever made! You should think about checking craigslist or other sites where people are selling photography equipment. I got mine for $70 and it was in perfect condition! Saves a little bit of money to spend on clothes ;) 

  11. I'd love to help, but my husband is the the camera guy. He did just ask me for a new lens, but that usually means, he tells me which one and I just pay for it. I really should pay more attention! 

    xo, Yi-chia
    Always Maylee

  12. I rented a f/1.4 and LOVED it. 
    I rented it to try it out before I took the plunge and can honestly say that it is worth the extra $200, plus the next step up 1.2 is $2000. 

  13. Ooh upgrading lenses is exciting! I'm a fellow Canon lady... I use a Canon EOS 600D. I have three lenses but the one I use most for outfit photos is that 50mm f/1.8 that you're thinking about. I got it for the same reason as you - I love the blurry backgrounds, which it's great for! I would highly recommend getting this lens, as I don't think you'll find the 1.4 necessary (or worth the extra $$). I don't even use it on the lowest aperture - I usually shoot outfit photos on about f/2.8 - anything smaller and parts of me are out of focus!
    The other thing to consider is that these lenses make everything 'zoomed in' a lot more. So when I look through my camera with the f/1.8 lens on, everything is a LOT closer than normal. Just something to keep in mind - it's not so good for indoor photos because you have to be so much further away from the subject, so it's not as flexible a lens as a zoom lens, for eg.
    Sorry for the essay haha! :)


  14. I just got a T3i and I've been trying to decide on a portrait lens too.  I think I am going with the f/1.8 lens.  I've read on photography blogs that it's a really good portrait lens and that it's not worth to upgrade to the f/1.4 unless you taking professional portraits. 

    Penniless Socialite

  15. Wellllll I'm clearly not the one to ask since I just use my iPhone most of the time but I'll be coming back to this thread :) 

    It's an Easy Life

  16. I am not weighing in one way or the other; however, if you do choose the f/1.4, B&H Photo is amazing. They also sell it for $299 (even less in the used department). My parents are very picky, and they've bought all of their camera equipment through B&H. 

    Good luck making your decision! :) 

  17. Oops, I meant to include a link for you.  
    Here it is:  http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/675617-REG/Canon_4462B001_Canon_EOS_Rebel_T2i.html

  18. I use an 50mm F1.8 :) I COULD have gotten the F1.4, but even the photography specialist where I bought the F1.8 told me that he didn't think it was worth to spend the extra money for only f0.4 extra :) Especially not when you're not thinking about doing professional photography :) 

    Basically, The F-stop blurs the background, but I find that it also makes your photos a little lighter and brighter :) The F1.4 gives you slightly more blur and light (dreamier effect), but I think that for outfit photos a 50mm F1.8 is more than good enough! ^^ I'd say you can better spend that $200 for a little vacation / road trip or at J.Crew... Your choice :D 

  19. Hi Jessica, i am not a camera person to ask s i apologize. Thank you though for the sweet thoughts and visiting my blog. I hope you get the great one.



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