Invest in the glass

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

I’ve been researching cameras again. This happens with some regularity but more pressing because my pocketable camera is starting to fail. Each year new digital cameras arrive on the scene boasting the latest upgrades. Lately it’s been things like:

– Moar megapixels
– Vertical video format for vloggers
– Microphone input
– Better Wifi
– Even more articulating screens

And then I wondered, wait a minute. Why am I not regarding cameras like I do a car? Where I prefer old fashioned dials and manual transmissions?

So I started to research film cameras. Particularly, the Canon EOS model line.

I have a fairly long-in-the-tooth digital 5D Mark II which I love dearly. Full frame sensor. Lots of dials. Accepts EOS lenses that work with film cameras. Maybe I should look into a really nice lens. Because they say, invest in glass, camera “backs” will always evolve—lenses don’t. A high quality lens is going to take a better photo no matter if you’re shooting digital or on film.

So I found this monster on eBay for a fraction of the cost of a new lens. It’s a Canon EF 85mm f/1.2. All those numbers mean it takes really shallow depth of field images. It’s a bit pokey to focus, but I’m just figuring out how to use it. But it’s fun, and it should last a lifetime. Now to find a good film back for it…