Leo Laksi’s Bangkok And Back

Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

Canon 85mm f/1.8 lens and “bokeh”

with 3 comments

Leica red dot in focus

Leica red dot in focus

Bokeh is that elusive quality of the out of focus areas of a photograph that is usually attributed to a shallow depth of field.  With the 85mm f/1.8, the bokeh is outstanding.

I won’t spend any time discussing the particulars of depth of field (dof) and bokeh.  There are plenty of sites that you can visit for more detailed information.

Although this lens is relatively inexpensive, the combination of large aperture and the excellent glass makes for an image that is quite pleasing.  The photos in this posting were shot at f/1.8 and as you can see, the dof is narrow, probably within 2 1/2 inches.  In the above photo, “M8” and the Leica red dot are in focus while the print on the front of the lens is not.  Same for the shutter release (red button).

I purchased this lens eight years ago and it has seen use all over the world.  Although it is not as rugged as an L lens in build quality, it has stood up to abuse.  I’ve even dropped it a couple of times without any apparent damage.  (Try that with a Leica lens.)  These photos were shot with a 5D.  I have previously used this lens with a 1V and 10D.

Front of lens in focus, rest is not

Front of lens in focus, rest is not

In the above photo, the front of the lens is in focus, while the rest of the frame is not.  Note that the image is very sharp at focus as the image below shows.  At the same time, the “bokeh” is pleasing.

Cropped of above image

Crop of above image very sharp

Cropped again, still sharp

Cropped again, still sharp

Reflection off the glass is also sharp!

Top photo - reflection off a glass table is also sharp!

Shallow depth of field at 1.8

Shallow depth of field at 1.8

Again, woman’s face is in focus, the rest of the frame is not.

Cup handle is in focus, the rest not.

Cup handle is in focus, the rest not.

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Written by leolaksi

November 23, 2008 at 9:42 am

Posted in Photography, Travel

Tagged with , , , , ,

3 Responses

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  1. the m8 is beautiful. i also have the 85 mm 1.8 and the 85mm 1.2 . . . the 1.8 in my opinion is better. it’s lighter and you don’t have to “focus” so much on focussing as you would with a 1.2 (the one eye in focus, one eye out of focus problem).

    fkphotography

    December 24, 2008 at 3:43 am

  2. You’re right about the 1.8 and 1.2. And the 1.8 is inexpensive.

    leolaksi

    December 24, 2008 at 11:01 pm

  3. Thanks for sharing. The Canon 85mm f/1.8 is awesome.

    Anthony Lai

    August 29, 2011 at 1:51 pm


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