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07-21-2011, 10:36 AM   #1
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Do I need this?

Hi everyone,
I have the Tamron 90 mm f/2.8 macro lens. I was wondering is it necessary for me to get a Bower 85 mm f/1.4 or similar lens for things like portraits or can I get by with the Tamron. Unfortunately , I don't have the money for the Sigma 85 mm f/1.4 right now so that can't be an option, thanks.

07-21-2011, 10:41 AM   #2
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Unless you really need the speed, I would just stick to the Tamron. Put the money you would spend on the Bower and save it towards a better lens down the road.
07-21-2011, 12:47 PM   #3
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depends on how much you need the speed or shallow DOF. if the DOF of your macro is fine with you, then there is no point of getting a fast 85mm.
07-21-2011, 12:49 PM   #4
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I have the Tamron 90mm f2.8 and I bought it for macro but I like it for portraits. I've often considered the 85mm f1.4.

Just wondering how much difference there is in bokeh between the 2 lenses. Is it worth getting?

07-21-2011, 12:53 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by sweetpapa Quote

Just wondering how much difference there is in bokeh between the 2 lenses. Is it worth getting?
it's a whole lot different if you ask me. especially if you are shooting with certain focus distances.

I'm not saying that the Tamron is bad, except that the subject isolation is just better with a faster lens with 2 stop advantage.
07-21-2011, 01:56 PM   #6
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I can't comment on 85/1.4, but I have a 90/2.8 macro (Vivitar-Komine) and two 85/2's (Jupiter and Nikkor) and they are quite different. An 85/1.4 would be even more so. For a rough comparison, if you have a 50/1.4 lens, take a shot at f/1.4 and another at f/2.8 and see the difference. At 85-90mm the DOF difference is less pronounced because DOF is thinner at those f-stops, but it's still significant. In each case, the thickness of DOF is about cut in half.

(For a test with DOFs closer to 85/1.4 vs 90/2.8, shoot a 200/3.5 wide open, then stop it down to f/6.3.)

As Pentaxor said, you'll notice the difference in subject isolation. This can be finessed if you're otherwise happy with your Tamron. Just keep your subject further from a background. For a real cheap trick, try this: Put a +1 diopter closeup lens on your 90! Now you've got DOF even thinner than an 85/1.4, closer to 85/1.25. Yeah, your working distance is around 1m, so it's great for full-face closeups. A +0.5 diopter closeup lens would give DOF like an 85/1.7 with working distance extending to around 2m, but such is rather more rare and expensive.
07-21-2011, 02:11 PM   #7
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Well i don't know that lens, it is on sale under several brands here in Europe to.

I have FA*85mm/f1.4 and there are only a few reasons to buy such a lens.
  • To use the lens on apertures f1.4 to f2.5
  • To have better Image Quality at apertures f2.8 to f5.6

To be honest I don't think that the bower will outrun the Tamron 90mm at apertures f2.8 to f5.6.

Making good pictures with such a lens at wide open aperture (or there about) isn't very easi, so don't expect it to happen on every occasion.

At f1.4:


At f1.4:


At f2.2:


So it would be nice when Ricoh puts this nice lens into a modern jacket called DA* and some nice nano-coating on it.
07-21-2011, 02:18 PM   #8
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+1 with the last two posts.
I have the Tamron 90mm f2.8 (AF)and a Zeiss 85mm f1.4 (MF). The lenses are very different and for different use.

I found that the 85mm f1.4 is better for indoor sport than the Tamron. Often indoor sports take place in poorly lighted halls and you need to use a fast shutter speed. The Tammy is not fast enough IMO.

Two different lenses, two different uses. The big question: do you really need it or is it LBA?


07-21-2011, 02:33 PM   #9
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Is it a need or is it LBA?

Well HCC, I know it is probably LBA because I can use the Tamron because on a APS-C sensor, 85mm is not 85mm but closer to 128 mm. I guess I was becoming bored waiting for a Sigma 10-20 F/4-5.6 to come that is backordered.
07-21-2011, 02:57 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by jusfun21 Quote
Well HCC, I know it is probably LBA because I can use the Tamron because on a APS-C sensor, 85mm is not 85mm but closer to 128 mm.
(sigh, not again...)

No, an 85mm lens is not a 128mm lens. It does not magically change size when put on a different camera. An 85mm lens is an 85mm lens, period. Cameras with different-size frames (film or digital) see different amounts of the projected image, that's all. A smaller frame crops more of the image. That's why a dSLR that isn't FF is called a crop-sensor. On any camera, an 85mm lens and a 90mm lens will have nearly identical FOV's. On your crop-sensor cam, that's around 20 degrees. On a FF cam, it's around 28 degrees.

EDIT: Oh wait, I was wrong! I just tested this -- I put my big fat Jupiter-9 85/2 onto my K20D... and it started GROWING!! It got LONGER! And HARDER! And it's STAYING UP!! It's like VIAGRA FOR LENSES!! If I can sell this, I'LL BE RICH!!! Ooh ooh!! [/me gets all excited, must take cold shower]

Last edited by RioRico; 07-21-2011 at 03:11 PM.
07-21-2011, 03:31 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
EDIT: Oh wait, I was wrong! I just tested this -- I put my big fat Jupiter-9 85/2 onto my K20D... and it started GROWING!! It got LONGER! And HARDER! And it's STAYING UP!! It's like VIAGRA FOR LENSES!! If I can sell this, I'LL BE RICH!!! Ooh ooh!! [/me gets all excited, must take cold shower]
Is this what people refur to as lensporn?
07-21-2011, 03:38 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jusfun21 Quote
Hi everyone,
I have the Tamron 90 mm f/2.8 macro lens. I was wondering is it necessary for me to get a Bower 85 mm f/1.4 or similar lens for things like portraits or can I get by with the Tamron. Unfortunately , I don't have the money for the Sigma 85 mm f/1.4 right now so that can't be an option, thanks.
as others have posted, the "perceeved need" for this lens is only if you intend to shoot below F2.8

it is that simple,

the other possible question to ask, is whether you have the KA or K adaptor for your Tamron.

The Samyang (bower, prooptic, vivitar et al..) lens is a KA mount which gives you full automatic controls and P-TTL Flash. BUT again, it would be far cheaper to get a PKA adaptor than the Samyang 85//1.4 so it still comes down to wanting/needing to shoot below F2.8
07-22-2011, 05:09 AM   #13
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Personally, I like that 85/1.4 for a lot of things. Bokeh is certainly one of them, it's pretty even.



The 1m min focal length, not so much, but I get a lot of use out of it. I don't have a 90mm macro to compare it to.
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