Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

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Nick Evans
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Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by Nick Evans » July 27th, 2016, 9:44 pm

Hi guys

Looking for some advice please :)

I have the non-L series Canon 100mm macro lens. I'm thinking of upgrading to the L-series, but not sure if it's worth it?
It's only for photographing reptiles and amphibians of course, in the field, so I never use a tripod. I use a twin flash. Does the IS system make a big difference?

Any input would be appreciated :D

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by the_cw1 » July 28th, 2016, 4:55 pm

I have several pro photography friends and they all say the IS for the L series makes quite the difference. The 100mm lens can be difficult without a tripod to use without small shaking. I use the non L series 100mm macro, for what it's worth, but I'm reporting what I've heard from those more learned than myself. :)

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by MonarchzMan » July 28th, 2016, 8:34 pm

I have the L series 100mm macro and I love it. I hand-hold 99% of my shots and they're crisp. Definitely love the lens.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by chrish » July 29th, 2016, 5:30 am

I think with modern DSLRs and the ability to shoot at ISO 400, 800, or even 1600 with impunity combined with the fact that you are using flash probably negates the benefit of IS in your particular case.

Of course, if your camera body had IS......oh wait, you shoot Canon. :lol:

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by Antonsrkn » July 29th, 2016, 5:44 am

I dont think its worth it for a macro lens that you pair with flash, that money could be better invested in some other sort of camera equipment.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by Nick Evans » July 29th, 2016, 9:51 pm

Thank you so much for your input and advice everyone, really appreciate it :thumb:

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by walk-about » September 7th, 2016, 7:24 am

Why would you want to use a 100 macro for herp photos? Just curious. I have the 100mm macro L Canon. Love it!! I use it for portraits of my dogs and daughter. Glass is incredibly smooth and it is an absolute awesome lens...just not so much for herps in my opinion.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by MonarchzMan » September 7th, 2016, 10:23 am

It's my go-to lens for herp photos. You're not right next to the subject (thus allowing the subject to relax some), but you're close enough that you can deal with an unruly subject, if necessary. I think, for me anyway, the 180mm would be too long.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by walk-about » September 8th, 2016, 7:39 am

I would love to see some of your herp pics shot with the 100. Can you give me a link?

I have taken some good herp shots with it too, but no way would it ever be my 'go to' for anything. The biggest problem I would have with it is the distance from the subject - especially a subject that might have to be momentarily controlled such as a treefrog that could easily hop away in a moment's blink.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by MonarchzMan » September 8th, 2016, 4:23 pm

I suppose it depends on what you shoot, but for me, it works great.

ImageRose's Shadeskink by J.P. Lawrence, on Flickr

ImageDendy's Toadlet by J.P. Lawrence, on Flickr

ImageMountain Heath Dragon by J.P. Lawrence, on Flickr

ImageWhite's Tree Frog by J.P. Lawrence, on Flickr

ImageGreat Barred Frog by J.P. Lawrence, on Flickr

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by walk-about » September 9th, 2016, 5:41 am

Great shots J.P. You have been to some amazing places that I can only dream of. Regrading the 100mm mac, the limited depth of field with that lens would drive me loco. It just would not be feasible in the field for my work. But you are correct, it is all what you shoot. I hit some of your pics on Flickr. The pics of the Tasmanian rain forest are incredible!! You have some amazing shots my friend.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by MonarchzMan » September 9th, 2016, 8:41 am

Yea, I don't mind the narrow depth of field for the subjects I shoot. But in order to get rid of that, you'd have to get a 50mm or something like that, and at that point, you're affecting the natural behavior of the animal by having to be so close. Unless you're shooting snakes, at which point, macro is pretty pointless.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by bgorum » September 9th, 2016, 9:26 am

walk-about wrote:Great shots J.P. You have been to some amazing places that I can only dream of. Regrading the 100mm mac, the limited depth of field with that lens would drive me loco. It just would not be feasible in the field for my work. But you are correct, it is all what you shoot. I hit some of your pics on Flickr. The pics of the Tasmanian rain forest are incredible!! You have some amazing shots my friend.

Dave
A 100mm macro doesn't have any more or less depth of field at any given aperture and magnification than any other lens. A shorter lens takes in a wider angle of view, such that if you keep the size of the subject the same with say a 100 macro and a 50 macro the 50 macro will include more background, with objects in the background being smaller and perhaps more recognizable with the 50 than with the 100, but depth of field (the area in front of and behind the plane of focus) is determined solely by magnification and aperture. It is independent of focal length.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by MonarchzMan » September 9th, 2016, 7:03 pm

bgorum wrote:A 100mm macro doesn't have any more or less depth of field at any given aperture and magnification than any other lens. A shorter lens takes in a wider angle of view, such that if you keep the size of the subject the same with say a 100 macro and a 50 macro the 50 macro will include more background, with objects in the background being smaller and perhaps more recognizable with the 50 than with the 100, but depth of field (the area in front of and behind the plane of focus) is determined solely by magnification and aperture. It is independent of focal length.
There are some differences between full frame and crop sensor, as is my understanding, although I don't quite understand why.

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Re: Canon 100mm Macro lenses- L series vs non-L series?

Post by bgorum » September 10th, 2016, 10:16 am

MonarchzMan wrote: There are some differences between full frame and crop sensor, as is my understanding, although I don't quite understand why.
It has to do with magnification. Because a full frame camera has a bigger sensor it requires more magnification to fill the frame with the same size subject. This results in full frame cameras producing shallower depth of field, (assuming the same framing for both). If you were to shoot with a full frame camera and a DX camera with the same lens, at the same distance, and same aperture, then cropped the full frame picture to match the framing of the DX camera, the depth of field would be identical.

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