Sunday, December 30, 2012

Fast lens: Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm

We know that Photography is always about light and exposure, and so much so that these 2 key elements became one of the most important factor when it comes to the choice of equipment. Of course, a good picture is made easy with good lighting but in less than ideal situations that you need to shoot in low light, this is where the equipment plays an important part. Another reason is the love for "bokeh" aka the thin dof, everyone just love it.

Jim Richardson tells us that  "Great lenses pay off when the going gets tough"
High ISO handling performance camera, Big aperture lens has always been the consideration and of course  these doesnt come cheap.

So recently, i came across a Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm lens on flickr. It belongs to Keith's dad and this lens should have been with him even before 1983. (I wasnt even born then)
He didnt have the camera to mount this lens and coincidentally i had earlier asked to buy it over in the event if he plans to sell it.
Finally after a long wait for the shipment, it finally reaches me before the end of the year. Well, my fastest lens are a f1.4 and owning a f1.2, isnt something that i wishes for. Nonetheless, its a good chance to own one.

Canon RF & Lenses

Canon RF & Lenses

Canon RF & Lenses

Other than the copy that Eddy owned, this is the 2nd copy of this lens that i have came across in superb condition.
Canon RF & Lenses
Lens mounted on a Canon 7

Some history about this lens, its built for Canon Rangefinder, which explains the LTM( Leica Thread Mount)
Dante Stella explains that "the Canon 1.2 is a straight Zeiss Planar pattern lens (7 elements in 4 groups). Huge with a 55mm filter diameter (which impringe slightly on the 50mm frameline. Has full f/stops from 1.2 to 22, circular diaphgram, and infinity lock. Min focus is 1 meter. On-axis, focuses well at f1.2. Not a super high contrast lens but if you think about what you use superwide apertures for (night shooting, for example) its is not a huge problem. Noticeably soft in the corners wide oen."
My personal experience and read up on this lens is that it has some reputation of hazing easily which is probably due to its infamous oily aperture blades. This lens when wide open render a soft skin tone on the subject and under spot lighting would show some glow.

Rightfully, i should load a roll of film on my Rangefinder to get some shots from this wonderful lens. Well, that would take a while before i can show some pictures here. So here are some prelim shots from my Fuji X-E1.

If you owned a f/1.2 lens, you would definitely love to shoot at f/1.2 to see the thin dof from the lens. I'm no exceptions, and while the X'mas lighting are still everywhere, its a good chance to shoot some colors!
Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm

Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm

The glow under the spot light...soft rendering here
Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm

Manual focusing on a f/1.2 isnt as hard as i thought...
Canon 50mm f1.2 ltm

Shooting out-door is much easier..
Canon 50mm f1.2

If you are thinking if that difference of f/0.2 makes a difference from a f/1.4 lens, it does and trust me, you can tell when you get it.

Of course, for me buying this lens has another personal agenda, i just love Canon history so much that i added this new purchase to my existing collection. Definitely not the best collection compared to others, but some of the best Canon lenses here at an affordable price :)

Canon RF & Lenses

Time to go shoot with my Canon RF!

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