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CanonEF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens
 
4.9

(based on 658 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (573)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (75)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (8)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

98%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Strong construction (431)
  • Nice bokeh (378)
  • Durable (350)
  • Consistent output (329)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (265)

Cons

  • Heavy (293)
  • Slow focus (221)
  • Tough to attach (49)
  • Pricey / poor value (12)
  • Blurry focus (9)

Best Uses

  • Weddings (370)
  • Low light (368)
  • Night photography (248)
  • Portraits (176)
  • Landscape/scenery (67)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Pro photographer (189), Semi-pro photographer (168), Photo enthusiast (115), Enthusiast (40), Professional (39)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (390), Yes (13)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Love this lens

I spent a lot of time reading reviews on this lens before I bought it. I mean A LOT of time. I read official reviews and user reviews and hunted down forum posts and...Read complete review

I spent a lot of time reading reviews on this lens before I bought it. I mean A LOT of time. I read official reviews and user reviews and hunted down forum posts and blog posts. The overall concenses was that for its purpose - a portrait lens with wicked wide aperture and gorgeous blur/bokeh it couldn't be beat. There were also a lot of reviews complaining that it was too slow to focus.

After using it for several months now, I can say that I have no regrets. Love the images. Skintones are fabulous. Honestly, I don't feel the lens is slow to focus - it's not the lens I would pick up to go shoot a soccer game, but that's not what it's for! I've photographed babies, adults and dogs. No problems.

One person on a forum pointed out that it could be that the complaints about focusing this lens may well be from people not used to the challenges of photographing with a super shallow DOF.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Eh, it's ok...

I used this lens for weddings and portraits. It is a decent lens but not worth the money, not even close. It DOES produce beautiful bokeh, is very sharp and it has unreal...Read complete review

I used this lens for weddings and portraits. It is a decent lens but not worth the money, not even close. It DOES produce beautiful bokeh, is very sharp and it has unreal contrast and colors for its wide aperture.

What it DOESN'T have is the ability to control CA problems (it's downright awful at this) and the AF is just slow enough to make you miss shots.

Also, the 135mm f/2L smokes this lens easy in nearly every department. I know, I know it's f/2 not f/1.2. But seriously, the 135mm is the best lens canon makes for a prime less than 200mm. At 135mm the bokeh is very similar to the 85. Plus, if you're using it for portraits you will get a bit more facial features in focus along with the eyes while maintaining great bokeh. Not to mention, the 135mm has blazing fast AF.

Reviewed by 658 customers

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5.0

Incredible glass

By Skoot

from New England

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

This lens is spectacular. The shallow DOF on can achieve is mind-numbing, and by no means easy to master. But properly used, the images I'm getting from this lens are already done of the best in my portfolio. The ability to separate subject from background, and that bokeh, oh that bokeh... With this lens you have the tool to create images others only dream of.

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5.0

Best decision ever.

By Alyssa

from Sarasota, FL

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Easily Interchangeable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Heavy

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Weddings/Events
  • Wildlife Photos

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

I shoot a lot of weddings and portraits and this lens is a game changer. I've been saving up to make the purchase and finally did! I have done a couple weddings and some portrait sessions with it and absolutely love everything about it. The focus is fast, and the quality is outstanding. I would recommend this for anyone that does weddings/portraits!

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Bokehliciousness! LOVE this lens!

By Bokeh4U

from Reading, PA

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Head Shots
  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Night Photography
  • Portrait
  • Weddings/Events

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

I bought this lens planning to use if for weddings and portrait sessions with more controlled light... I find myself taking it along for just about every shoot and it's been just spectacular. With the F/1.2 aperture the bokeh is super creamy and dreamy - making for some intense images. Truth is, I pretty much shoot at F/1.2 nearly all the time and only stop down when I fear I won't be able to grab focus deeply enough across a face (if that's what I want). One of my "tricks" is to get more distance between me and the subject and then crop the image in Lightroom - I get the bokeh and focus both.

The lens is slow to focus but I knew that before I bought. It's a little heavy, too, but just wait until you see that front element. It's massive! Shooting in daylight at F/1.2 requires a neutral density filter or extremely high shutter speed. I choose the ND filter.

I'm very happy I bought this lens - I debated it for a very long time and just wish I would have done it sooner...

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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4.0

Incredible Isolation

By Adam

from Anaheim, CA

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Nice Bokeh
  • Sharp
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Chromatic Aberration
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Portrait
  • Video

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

Shooting at f/1.2 is a challenge! But it is soooo worth it when you nail the focus! This slightest movement from you or your model/subject can shift the focus plane just enough, so shoot a lot and quickly.

I wish the lens was weather sealed, focused faster, and had a better handle on chromatic aberration.

Despite those minor downsides, the end results are incredible. Photos with this lens has a look and feel that is unique and special.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Colours to shoot for.

By Zalo

from Latin America

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Nice Bokeh

Cons

  • Heavy

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Landscape/Scenery

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

I know the best use is for portraits, but architecture may be added to the list. The lens completes my set, therefore, the weight was taken for granted.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Get this for beautiful portraits!

By mgpixlab

from New York, NY

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Fashion
  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Night Photography
  • Portraiture
  • Video
  • Weddings/Events

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

The best portrait lens all around. This is a must. I used to have the FD version of this lens (for film photography / Canon F-1) and I never seemed to get around getting one for my digital 5D Mark III.

I was definitely missing out. The quality of this lens surpasses expectations. The only minor disadvantage about it is the relatively slow focusing speed, but I really don't care about this too much, as I do not shoot weddings (where this factor would perhaps be crucial).

It is also a heavy lens, but hey, there is a lot of high quality glass packed in, so it should be expected.

Construction is rugged and images are beautiful. Definitely a must if you're into portraits and or fashion.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Get this for beautiful portraits!

By mgpixlab

from New York, NY

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Night Photography
  • Portraiture
  • Video
  • Weddings/Events

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

The best portrait lens all around. This is a must. I used to have the FD version of this lens (for film photography / Canon F-1) and I never seemed to get around getting one for my digital 5D Mark III.

I was definitely missing out. The quality of this lens surpasses expectations. The only minor disadvantage about it is the relatively slow focusing speed, but I really don't care about this too much, as I do not shoot weddings (where this factor would perhaps be crucial).

It is also a heavy lens, but hey, there is a lot of high quality glass packed in, so it should be expected.

Construction is rugged and images are beautiful. Definitely a must if you're into portraits and or fashion.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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4.0

Nice bokeh, poor design on the manual focus ring

By stevo

from Chicago, IL

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Nice Bokeh

Cons

  • Heavy

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Weddings/Events

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

I gave it a 4 star because the lens hood also attaches to the focusing ring, makes it erratic at times. It is a poor design. Also manual focus is not very effective on this lens. Other than that, pictures came out perfect.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

massive & unique

By seymour templar

from NYC

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Strong Construction
  • Unique

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Night Photography
  • Portraits

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

truly one-of-a-kind lens, with a few negative aspects: it is very expensive, the focus is slow (given the weight of the glass elements, there is no real way to make the focusing faster) BUT it is truly one of the very few extraordinary lenses around. Focusing is precise and the lens is very sharp (better than, say, the EF 50mm f/1.2) Full time manual override, very smooth focusing ring.
It does show vignetting at and around full open, and there is quite a bit of spherochromatism, but nothing Raw Editing can't take care of. It is for the dedicated professional, as the weight itself would discourage dilettantes of taking it around for hours. It's a costly masterpiece.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Favorite Lens of All Time (With one stipulation)

By Mitch

from Boise, ID

About Me Pro Photographer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Easily Interchangeable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Chromatic Aberration

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Night Photography
  • Sports/Action
  • Video
  • Weddings/Events
  • Wildlife Photos

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

This is my favorite lens. Hands down. Why the four stars then? Because of performance that doesn't live up to the description and I simply work around it because the image that this thing produces is gorgeous.

It's the aberration. If the marketing material didn't state that it didn't do it then this wouldn't be a problem. In the description, though, it mentions superior reduction of chromatic aberration even at large apertures. At large apertures, though, the fringing is pretty obvious. In some cases it's severe. I rock the 5D Mark III (with the aberration correction information for the 85mm available in camera) and even with that enabled the fringing was still there but with a soft, almost gaussian glow.

Honestly, though, I don't care. This lens will give you some of the most gorgeous images you can pull outside of a medium format camera. If you get one lens outside of the 24-105mm, get this one.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

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5.0

Beautiful lens!!

By andrewdophoto

from Naples, FL

About Me Semi-pro Photographer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Slow Focus

Best Uses

  • Indoors/Low Light
  • Weddings/Events

Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

I switched from Sony mirrorless to Canon recently and this lens was at the top of my list! Beautiful bokeh and once you nail down that focus point dead on your subject...it becomes something unlike any other lens..!

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Made me look good!

By Jeffro

from Pensacola, FL

About Me Photo Enthusiast

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Durable
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Weddings/Events

    Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

    I bought for taking head shots and WOW does it take great head shots. I'm new and wanted to make a good impression on a photo shoot so I needed great photos. This lens delivers. As I read before I purchased it is not too forgiving and it's true the focus point has to be spot on and when it is WOW. The weight and focus speed are non issues for taking great portraits.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Extradionary Portrait Lens

    By Rob

    from Las Vegas

    About Me Semi-pro Photographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Durable
    • Easily Interchangeable
    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
    • Nice Bokeh

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Indoors/Low Light
      • Landscape/Scenery
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      Amazing portrait lens. Don't understand the complaints about the auto-focus; it's a portrait lens.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      My best lens

      By Gallardo

      from Cancun

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      I Love it???

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      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Best Lens!

      By S.F Photography

      from Lang Island

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      This lens is terrific. The image quality is spectacular, and the huge aperture makes this lens great for portraits and any other time when your working in low light situations. Overall Amazing lens. Definitely One of my favorites.

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      5.0

      Great lens!

      By S.F Photography

      from Long Island

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      This lens is terrific. The image quality is spectacular, and the huge aperture makes this lens great for portraits and any other time when your working in low light situations. Overall Amazing lens. Definitely One of my favorites.

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      (2 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Extradionary portrait lens

      By A. M.

      from Toronto, Canada

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Low Light Photos
      • Nice Bokeh

      Cons

      • Heavy
      • Slow Focus

      Best Uses

      • Indoors/Low Light
      • Night Photography
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      This is great portrait lens, especially in low light environment.

      I just made flowers photo and attached it - it has been made today morning in low light conditions.

      Great colors, crystal clear and deep dynamic range. Photos may look better than real picture.

      It is not open field lens, 101% studio portrait lens.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      5.0

      Superb lens.

      By SMB

      from Worcestershire

      Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

      Even better than expected

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      5.0

      BEST portrait lens!

      By Rebecca

      from Boulder, CO

      About Me Pro Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Consistent Output
      • Durable
      • Easily Interchangeable
      • Fast / accurate auto-focus
      • Nice Bokeh
      • Rugged
      • Strong Construction

      Cons

      • Heavy

      Best Uses

        Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

        LOVE LOVE LOVE this lens! It creates such amazing portraits! Highly recommended and worth the investment!

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        5.0

        Extraordinary

        By bananaG

        from Las Vegas

        Comments about Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM Lens:

        I am so happy I bought this lens! The image quality is spectacular! I feel like I'm rediscovering my subjects. I would definitely recommend making the investment!

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