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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 03 Apr 2012 (Tuesday) 00:08
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What are Canon's top 3 lenses for IQ?

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Apr 03, 2012 10:05 |  #16

I can only rate what I've used, so I say:

70-200 2.8 IS II
85L II

dawn | 29 | gear

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Apr 03, 2012 10:30 |  #17

joeblack2022 wrote in post #14202404 (external link)
Your list is very similar to this one, only difference being the 100mm 2.8 IS Macro in 2nd place:

http://www.bobatkins.c​om …est_canon_eos_l​enses.html (external link)

I am not sure I trust the user review based lens ratings - I don't know if the number of reviews is large enough, or if there is any bias in that site user base.

User ratings are in general not very accurate way to measure quality of a product (e.g., I wouldn't be surprised if users of very expensive brands would have a bias toward higher ratings, to justify subconsciously the huge premium they paid over competitor products; think of Apple users, Leica users etc.)

But if you stick with user-based ratings, B&H store web site has probably the largest statistics. E.g., comparing Canon's 17-55mm to Sigma 17-50 OS, we get

Canon 17-55: 4.7 stars, 97% recommend (based on >500 reviews);
Sigma 17-50: 4.6 stars, 97% recommend (based on 167 reviews; this is much newer product, hence the smaller statistic).

But on the Bob Atkins site, 17-55 is in the top 20, and Sigma is not.

Another strange point in the Atkins list: the not-so-good 18-135 is rated as high as 85mm f1.8. On B&H site, with huge statistics (e.g. >1000 ratings for 85mm), we get:

18-135: 4.4, 94%
85 f1.8: 4.7, 99%;

So 18-135 has significantly lower rating than the stellar rating 85mm lens.

6D, Tamron 24-70 f2.8 VC, 135L, 70-200 f4L, 50mm f1.8 STM, Samyang 8mm fisheye, home studio

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Location: USA
Apr 03, 2012 12:57 |  #18

24L II

I know more about gear than I know about photography :p
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Apr 03, 2012 14:21 |  #19

Easy right ! The holy trinity : 35L + 85L II + 135L

5D² 40 pancake | 50/1.4 | 85L II | 135L | 16-35L IS | 24-105L | 70-200 f2.8 L IS II and a TT bike
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Apr 03, 2012 15:02 |  #20

x_tan wrote in post #14200857 (external link)
200 f/2, 300 f/2.8 IS, 400 f/2.8 IS.

Time to saving up bit more.

Yes, please.

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Apr 03, 2012 15:27 |  #21

BaghdadFred wrote in post #14201159 (external link)
The 70-200 f/4 is better IQ than the Fabled 70-200 f/2.8 IS II ???

That was certainly the case with the last generation of 70-200 f/2.8L lenses, but it is not with the current 70-200 f/2.8L IS II lens.

But just to double check, I looked at this tool (external link), comparing various focal lengths at f/4.0. In every case, the f/2.8 wins (the center is almost identical, but away from the center, the difference is obvious). At f/8, the result is the same, but the difference is less apparent.

I know that the tool is not perfect, but that along with the reviews, the general anecdotal evidence here on POTN and elsewhere: I tend to think the 70-200 f/2.8L IS II wins hands down.

7D | 300D | G1X | Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 | EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 | EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro | EF 85mm f/1.8 | 70-200 f/2.8L MkII -- flickr (external link)

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Apr 03, 2012 18:24 |  #22

If you speak to those that don't shoot Canon I think you'll find most are appreciative of Canon's ability to make great supertele lenses. I believe that says a lot about about where Canon's specialty lies.

A comparison between lenses of vastly different types is a waste of time, but comparing the range of Canon glass to that of the other brands is more telling.

Cream of the Crop
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Location: British Columbia
Apr 03, 2012 18:44 |  #23
bannedPermanent ban

Ken Nielsen wrote in post #14200789 (external link)
I've heard that the 24mm TS lens is one of the top 3.

For the lenses I use I rate

1. the 500 f/4

2. the 45mm TS

3. the 135 L (which I sold as it does not fit my use, but is still worthy of top 3 rating IMHO.)

What do you think?

I believe this will be subjective to some degree as we all have a top 3 rating for IQ. So, maybe, through postings here, the top three will rise to the top.

Remember, this is for IQ and that is all.

Define IQ.

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Apr 03, 2012 19:06 as a reply to  @ Hogloff's post |  #24

18-55 f3.5-5.6
28-90 f3.5-5.6 USM
22-55 USM

5D / 400d / 70-200-4LIS / 50 Mk.I / 28-70
RB67 Pro-S / 50-90-180 Holy Trinity, 120/polaroid back
Graphic View I 4x5 / Schneider 180 / Meyer 135 / Ektar 127

Senior Member
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Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brasil
Apr 03, 2012 19:07 |  #25

You would need a precise definition of IQ and objective way to measure it in each Canon lens in order to rank them and discover the top three. All the responses here are just subjective opinions based largely on what people like and with little or no explanation, even subjective explanation, as to why they think they have the best image quality.

In the meantime, you could easily narrow your focus by looking at prime lenses in mid-range focal lengths in the L series. Wide angle and telephoto lenses generally have lower IQ compared to mid range FL for a variety of reasons. This reasoning would lead you toward lenses like the 35L, 50L and 85L.

Flickr (external link) 5Dii * Canon 50 * 85 * 17-40L * 24-105L * 180L * 100-400L * 580ex ii
Film: Contax | Rolleiflex | Pentax

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Apr 03, 2012 19:23 as a reply to  @ Hogloff's post |  #26

Interesting, I was thinking the EFS 60 should be on the list so I started looking at the photozone numbers and indeed it does get a higher top score than the 85L, 70-200 II and even 100L. However then I noticed the Sigma 17-50 has even a higher score yet.

Canon 7D/350D, Σ17-50/2.8 OS, 18-55IS, 24-105/4 L IS, Σ30/1.4 EX, 50/1.8, C50/1.4, 55-250IS, 60/2.8, 70-200/4 L IS, 85/1.8, 100/2.8 IS L, 135/2 L 580EX II, 430EX II * 2, 270EX II.

Tom ­ Reichner
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Apr 03, 2012 21:48 |  #27

135 f2
300 f2.8
800 f5.6

"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

Cream of the Crop
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Location: Bay Area, CA
Apr 03, 2012 22:08 |  #28

1. Between 300 and 400mm f2.8 IS I, 400mm f2.8 IS all the way.
2. 135mm f2 naa it is ok but I will take 200mm f2
3. 85L

Fuji XT-1, 18-55mm
Sony A7rIV, , Tamron 28-200mm, Sigma 40mm f1.4 Art FE, Sony 85mm f1.8 FE, Sigma 105mm f1.4 Art FE
Fuji GFX50s, 23mm f4, 32-64mm, 45mm f2.8, 110mm f2, 120mm f4 macro
Canon 24mm TSE-II, 85mm f1.2 L II, 90mm TSE-II Macro, 300mm f2.8 IS I

Thinks it's irresponsible
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Apr 06, 2012 00:35 |  #29

rick_reno wrote in post #14202233 (external link)
300 2.8, 85 1.2 and 100mm 2.8L

These​m/ (external link)​tografi (external link)

Cream of the Crop
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Apr 06, 2012 00:45 |  #30

My 3 primes 400 F2.8L, 300 F4L IS and the 135 F2L.

Follow me --> https://www.instagram.​com/shutterpat/ (external link)

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What are Canon's top 3 lenses for IQ?
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