Review of the Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8 Lens With Sample Images

In this video, I review the Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8 by both looking at some test shots from my studio as well as looking at how I use it in my professional work.

This video discusses the Canon TS-E 90mm f/2.8. This lens is a staple for product, still life, fine art, and portrait photographers alike. It can be a daunting purchase for many, but I don't know anyone who regrets buying it. Also, with it being a manual focus only lens, buying used copies of this lens is a very safe bet and good way to save money. The lens offers great build quality at an affordable price, although it does have a few design flaws, as I discuss in the video. I also go on to show how I have used it in my professional work and why I chose it over a standard 85mm or 100mm lens. 

For me, this lens is a must-have as a food photographer. Before buying a 100mm lens, I would suggest going for this. Furthermore, if I could only have one lens, it would be a 45mm tilt-shift lens, and as a second offering, I would chose this. I have been working with this lens for years, and the optics are beautiful. It also gives you the option to create medium format-esque images on a far smaller budget. I can often achieve nearly 100-megapixel files with my setup, which is far cheaper than a 100-megapixel camera and lens combo. I have also utilized this lens for portrait photography. Although a bit of a one trick pony, when pulled out, it can really bring something interesting to the shoot. 

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7 Comments

Good to see you back, Scott! Check Scott's YouTube channel and subscribe. He's on his way back and has provided a lot of great content before he was hit by some pirate.

Scott, that was a pretty good video about tilt shift lenses. Though I would have liked to see more examples of what it really can do compared to a standard lens, maybe a shot setup comparing it with something like an 85mm or that 100mm Zeis lens you kept talking about. That being said as a product and advertising photographer I absolutely love my 90mm tilt shift and have made more money using that lens than any other piece of equipment that I own. And yes the new version is amazing compared to the original version!

Ignace Maenhaut van Lemberge's picture

Using the original version for years now and it's still my favorite among all my Canon glass.. I use the 17 and 24 (new version) all the time.. should try the new 90 too.. one day..

Alex Yakimov's picture

Thanks, Scott! Nice vid. It seem that you like the tilt effect the most. What about shift (perspective control in Nikon terms) function?

Richard Kralicek's picture

Yes, both lenses are fantastic, although they are pretty old. The 45 for travelling, the 90 for portrait or close-up flower shots, both for nature ... and you do find them for a bit more than half the price on the second hand market, I got mine without flaws.

For mirrorless there's the option of the old FD 35mm tiltshift, which could be equally nice. You need an adapter, but due to an aperture ring on the lens it can be a cheaper one.

This is a random question, but is that portfolio shot at 5:15 of Shrub?

would love to see a direct comparison to the new version