A few months ago I rented a Canon 135mm Prime lens for a gig and did a little review.
While I liked the lens when shooting outdoors, the focal length was a bit extreme for indoor even on a full frame. So this past weekend when I needed a lens for a similar event I chose to scale it back a bit and go for the Canon 100mm Prime.
I don't want to rush into anything here but I think I may have found a new love.
Much like the previous review, none of the images below were cropped and were all shot with my 5D mkii on aperture priority (AV) at either f2.8 or f4.
Review time: I liked the autofocus, it was snappy in both single and continuous tracking and I had way fewer fails that I did with the 135mm. The bokeh was really nice, isolating subjects while allowing for a sense of the scene around them. As a portrait lens it worked very well creating great isolation and allowing you to be close enough to your subject to give them direction. I didn't test out the macro function in any significant way so I can't really comment on it. To round it all off the size and weight were perfect. It was sleek and more compact than I was expecting, though a little plastic feeling. I walked around for hours without feeling over-encumbered or like I was waving around a 300mm cannon scaring people off.
I'd highly recommend the 100mm Prime to anyone looking for a lightweight all around lens. It runs around $1,000, so it won't shred your pocket book but it will put a dent in it.
Also I think it is important to mention the 100mm as opposed to the 135mm suit my current style of photography better, so maybe I'm a little bias here. In the last year I have been primarily shooting with my Fuji x100s and challenging myself to get closer and closer to people with the 35mm frame. You break your comfort zone very easily shooting like that and I felt the 100mm focal length forces you to do a lot of the same.
Most of the time I was very close to my subjects (3 people threatened to punch me!) and would interact with them before or after I took a photo. I never did that with the 135mm.
One was even kind enough to serenade me with a song about how attractive I was and concluded our interaction by singing, "If you don't delete the photos of me I'll kill you in your sleep, I'll kill you in your sleep, delete the photos of me or I'll kill you in your sleep."