If Canon is BMW Motorrad then Canon EF 85mm f/1.2 L II USM (EF 85) is the BMW S 1000 RR. Its the fastest (together with the 50mm f/1.2) lens Canon have in its range and as in my previous posting regarding fast lens, I just thrill to have the opportunity to test (if you must know, the lens is not mine) for a day or two.
The EF85 is big and heavy, check out above the lens between the EF 70-200 f/2.8 IS USM and Sigma 30 f/1.4 lenses. It certainly need a lot of glass to make such f/1.2 speed.
With my 7D, the EF85 is a bit long. In a crop body the 85mm become 135mm. Most suitable for portrait lens. With its 1.2 opening the DoF is very-very narrow and it can isolate the object from its surrounding. The bokeh and the background blur is also simply stunning. Check out the creamy back ground on the picture bellow.
The only way to shoot with this lens is to have it wide open at f/1.2. Using them step down is just like riding your Desmosedici RR at only 50 kph 😀 Picture bellow fast lens shooting fast bike albeit stationary.
With a shallow DoF at f/1.2 you really need to pay attention on which part of the picture you want to have it in focus. Just like the picture above, with the bike in focus, my friend face in the middle was bit blur.
Shoot the lens wide open and any object will have this dreamy look capable only with the 1.2 opening.
Above and bellow pic, flower pic at my yard never look this stunning!
Another treat for this fast lens is off course it speed. Check out bellow the time stopping picture with the lens.
After play around with the lens my main problem with the lens is its Auto Focus (AF). Especially in a low light the AF is bit slow for the lens with such speed. The lens is also heavy for mid tele lens. Shooting hand held for more the 15 minutes and my arm is tired already. But the biggest drawback for me for this lens is its price. Last time I check the lens will burn about Rp 20+ million on your pocket. Ouch!
Having tested it for two days I must say the EF85mm f/1.2 is an amazing lens capable to produce an amazing picture. Too bad I need to return to its owner 😦