Canon Portrait Lens On A Budget – Canon EF 85mm f1.8

Canon Portrait Lens On A Budget – Canon EF 85mm f1.8


Wayne Rasku

I can\’t help myself. I must tell you about the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 lens.

Canon lenses for my Canon Digital SLR? You have my attention! So, what happens when I come across one that attracts my ‘lens detector?’ Well, I feel like I must have it. Unfortunately, I can\’t always give in to my desires because the lenses are not cheap. I mean, let\’s face it, my family really needs to come first, in spite of my intense desires. After all, I am a family guy, first and foremost.

Bottom line is that my photography hobby has financial limitations. I am not a pro, so I can\’t use that as an excuse to buy the newest and best. So I keep looking. But every so often, there a Canon lens that is so compelling it can\’t be overlooked.

For me, one of those ‘must have’ lenses is the Canon 85mm f/1.8. It simply must be in my camera case (or on my Canon camera). This goes way beyond desire. It is one of the necessary truths of my photography existence. OK, I\’m working toward breaking this to my wife, but this lens has capabilities so compelling that it ‘seems’ like a necessity.

Here are a few reasons for my passion about owning this lens.

1. Reviews by other owners. This is my main source of reading material. Call me what you will, but the way I feel about reading camera and equipment reviews is like others feel about mystery novels. It\’s just what I do. When I came across the reviews for the Canon 85mm f/1.8 I felt as if I had made one of the most exciting discoveries since beginning my digital SLR experience. You really should do yourself a favor and read these review at Amazon.

2. The Canon 85mm lens has the perfect focal length for a Canon Portrait lens. You might think that 135mm is the perfect focal length for portraits, and you would be right. In fact, a Canon 135mm L lens is on my wish list, and it is the lens choice of many pro portrait shooters. But they are using cameras that are full frame, much more expensive cameras than I can afford. So with my digital SLR, there is an APS-C sensor. If you own a Canon entry-level DSLR, or even a mid-level model, you have the same kind of sensor. You are probably familiar with this as it relates to your lens choices. The sensor changes the focal length of any lens by a factor of 1.6x. That 1.6x applied to an 85mm lens gives an effective focal length of 136mm. That\’s pretty darn close to 135mm.

3. Great price for a super wide aperture. Aperture is arguably the most important feature of a lens (aside from the quality of the glass, of course) because it is the opening width of the lens to let in light. In ‘lens speak,’ the smaller the aperture number, the wider the opening. In this case, f/1.8 is extremely wide, letting in lots of light. What is the significance of a wide aperture? ‘Bokeh,’ my photographic friend. Bokeh is that pleasing background blur that all professional photographers value so highly when taking head shots. The wide aperture of the Canon 85mm f/1.8 lens really lends itself to those professional looking photos with great bokeh. But wait, the news gets better! Check out the price compared to the Canon 135mm L lens.

That\’s my rant about a great portrait lens. Oh yeah, there are a few technical details you may be interested in before you take the plunge and purchase. It\’s always a good idea to completely research a lens prior to spending. I personally feel that one of the best things to consider when buying a lens is that they can be used even if you upgrade your digital camera. Manufacturers do not upgrade lenses as often as cameras. The Canon 85mm lens has been around for quite a while, and it still satisfies those who buy it. It will bring a smile to your face, as well.

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About the Author

I love photography and all things related to it. Cameras, camera gear, and image editing software fascinate me, so I am either buying the newest piece of equipment (or software) or researching my next purchase.

To see the specs and a few sample photos from this Canon portrait lens, go to

Click the images for best prices on AMAZON


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