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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 28 Jan 2016 (Thursday) 18:55
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16-35 f/4L IS or 16-35 f2.8 L II?

 
snegron
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Post edited over 3 years ago by snegron.
     
Jan 28, 2016 18:55 |  #1

I'm looking for a wide/standard zoom for my 7dmk2 and narrowed down my desired focal length to 16-35mm.

From what I have read so far the 4.0 IS version is newer and sharper near the edges. I have also read the build quality if the 2.8 version is much better (metal filter thread instead of plastic, stronger outer casing, etc.).

I am split between the amount of indoor/outdoor shots I take. Having IS or not is not a deal breaker for me as I can always up the ISO if needed.

The main intended use for this lens will be travel, occasional indoor sports, occasional portraits, some landscape; hand held at all times.

While there is close to a $500 difference between the two, if the 2.8 is truly that more spectacular then I will wait until I can budget for it. I tend to keep my lenses for a very long time, rarely selling any of them. Also, while I am happy wirh my 7dmk2 for now I won't discard the possibility of someday going full frame.

Your thoughts?


ps. I want to stick with Canon as I have never been a fan of Sigma due to previous negative experiences with Sigma lenses I have owned.




  
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MalVeauX
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Jan 28, 2016 19:03 |  #2

Heya,

The 16-35 F2.8's of all flavors are notoriously soft compared to the 16-35 F4L IS.

Really, you either need F2.8 or you don't. If you need F2.8, you get the F2.8 II. Or, if you don't, you get the F4 IS.

Realistically, the 16-35 F2.8 II will perform better on an APS-C if you think about it, because it will not use the edges of the glass, so the corners will appear sharper on your APS-C. And the F2.8 will appear like F4 does for depth of field purposes. And you benefit from the extra stop of light, if you need it. But like I was saying, you either need F2.8 or you don't.

Based on what you said you're going to use it for, I can't imagine needing F2.8, so I would get the superior F4L IS.

Kind of curious why you're not going for a 17-55 F2.8 IS instead though.

Or really, the Sigma 18-35 F1.8 ART would be *the* lens for what you're doing and wanting, if you wanted speed.

Very best,


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snegron
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Jan 28, 2016 19:19 |  #3

MalVeauX wrote in post #17876920 (external link)
Heya,

The 16-35 F2.8's of all flavors are notoriously soft compared to the 16-35 F4L IS.

Really, you either need F2.8 or you don't. If you need F2.8, you get the F2.8 II. Or, if you don't, you get the F4 IS.

Realistically, the 16-35 F2.8 II will perform better on an APS-C if you think about it, because it will not use the edges of the glass, so the corners will appear sharper on your APS-C. And the F2.8 will appear like F4 does for depth of field purposes. And you benefit from the extra stop of light, if you need it. But like I was saying, you either need F2.8 or you don't.

Based on what you said you're going to use it for, I can't imagine needing F2.8, so I would get the superior F4L IS.

Kind of curious why you're not going for a 17-55 F2.8 IS instead though.

Or really, the Sigma 18-35 F1.8 ART would be *the* lens for what you're doing and wanting, if you wanted speed.

Very best,


Thanks!

Only two reasons I excluded the 17-55mm 2.8 is because it is an ef-s lens. Also, some of the reviews I have read about it have not been all that great. Besides the extending barrel while zooming, the construction is mostly plastic.

Ironicaly, I own a Nikon 17-55mm 2.8AF S DX for my older Nikon small format cameras. Great focal length, beast of a lens.

I agree with you regarding either needing 2.8 or not. I am debating whethervor not I need 2.8 at this time...




  
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MalVeauX
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Jan 28, 2016 19:23 |  #4

snegron wrote in post #17876947 (external link)
Thanks!

Only two reasons I excluded the 17-55mm 2.8 is because it is an ef-s lens. Also, some of the reviews I have read about it have not been all that great. Besides the extending barrel while zooming, the construction is mostly plastic.

Ironicaly, I own a Nikon 17-55mm 2.8AF S DX for my older Nikon small format cameras. Great focal length, beast of a lens.

I agree with you regarding either needing 2.8 or not. I am debating whethervor not I need 2.8 at this time...

The EF-S 17-55 F2.8 IS is quite literally an "L" level lens for the EF-S mount. Not sure where you dug up a negative review about it. I wouldn't fuss about it being EF-S, you're on APS-C, unless you know for sure you're moving away from APS-C.

I know you stated you are trying to stay Canon, but if you want a metal beast of a lens, speed, sharpness, etc, the Sigma 18-35 F1.8 ART is the lens. Canon doesn't even have something that compares. There's also the Sigma 24-35 F2 ART (crazy!).

Very best,


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snegron
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Jan 28, 2016 19:50 |  #5

MalVeauX wrote in post #17876952 (external link)
The EF-S 17-55 F2.8 IS is quite literally an "L" level lens for the EF-S mount. Not sure where you dug up a negative review about it. I wouldn't fuss about it being EF-S, you're on APS-C, unless you know for sure you're moving away from APS-C.

I know you stated you are trying to stay Canon, but if you want a metal beast of a lens, speed, sharpness, etc, the Sigma 18-35 F1.8 ART is the lens. Canon doesn't even have something that compares. There's also the Sigma 24-35 F2 ART (crazy!).

Very best,



When I shot regularly with Nikon, all of my lenses were "full frame" except the 17-55. When I purchased it I was debating whether to go with the 17-55 DX or the "full frame" 24-70mm 2.8 ED. I ended up regretting my decision several years later when Nikon introduced full frame cameras. My reasoning now that I'm shooting with Canon is that I want to make sure when I spend money on glass I will try to get the best glass possible (budget permitting) and be able to use it if I decide to go full frame.

The speed and specs of the Sigma sound tempting, but I have been burned by three bad Sigmas I have owned in the past. I'm sure they have probably imlroved their QC, but I will stick with Canon for now.

p.s. One of the negative reviews was from Ken Rockwell... ☺




  
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MalVeauX
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Jan 28, 2016 19:58 |  #6

Heya,

I understand about the Sigmas. I too have gotten an ART that had bad front/back focusing. I couldn't correct it with the USB dock. So I returned it. Too bad. Then again, I've had Canon L's do the same thing and sold them too. So it's not just Sigma. Canon too. Everyone frankly. Just luck of the copy.

snegron wrote in post #17876969 (external link)
p.s. One of the negative reviews was from Ken Rockwell... ☺


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Not touching that one.

Very best,

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Snydremark
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Jan 28, 2016 20:17 |  #7

Mal's dead on on the 17-55. Don't shoot yourself in the foot by discounting the lens just because it's EF-S. Unless you have immediate plans to switch to a FF body in the near future, you're just burning money by skipping over it as an option. It's a fantastic lens for a much better price than the L lenses; plus, should you decide to go FF in the future, it resells fairly well, so you should come out close enough to even to not have to worry too much.

That said, he's also correct that unless you NEED 2.8 for some reason, the f/4 is just that much better that it may be worthwhile to nab it.


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Charlie
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Jan 28, 2016 20:38 |  #8

get the 17-55 until you go FF, then sell it. When both shot at F4, the IQ is similar. The 17-55 can do 2.8


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Post edited over 3 years ago by mcluckie.
     
Jan 28, 2016 20:40 |  #9

I had the 16-35II since 2009. I just sold it for the 16-35IS. I broke even.

I love fast lenses and am not fond of f4 even in zooms. That said, I also don't like lenses I regret shooting wide open. That was the 2.8II. I always felt I needed to stop down to f4 or even a few stops more. The f4IS lens is sharper wide open than the 2.8II stopped down.

The 2.8II seems more robust and heavier. The 4IS takes smaller filters. I haven't noticed any difference in color or saturation.

I have faster primes in all my zoom ranges, so if I really need f2 or 2.8, I have it. My needs for a wide zoom are different than my MF primes. I like AF on the street and even shoot from the hip. For these uses, IS should be much more valuable than the extra stop.


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Jan 28, 2016 21:49 |  #10

From what I read the f/4 is the sharper lens. If you don't NEED f/2.8, that's the one to get.

Though my f/2.8L II ain't bad.:-)


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Post edited over 3 years ago by clipper_from_oz.
     
Jan 29, 2016 04:59 |  #11

Most importantly what hasnt been mentioned here is the need for IS for your camera. You have a 7dMk2 which has exactly same amount of "on target" pixels as the 5DS &R and Im not sure if your aware that Canon are recommending IS for lens choice due to both cameras sensors needing faster than normal shutter speeds to help in minimising camera shake . . FYI Canon are noe recommending 2x focal length at minimum to avoid camera shake so if you want to shoot at mid range shutter speeds then you will most likely need the IS as I do for my 5DSR. If you search the 7dMk2 and 5DSR threads you will see heaps of info on this

Clipper


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Jan 29, 2016 05:51 |  #12

For architecture, urbex and anything with sharp corner needs the f4
For star-heavens & weddings the f2.8


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Jan 29, 2016 06:57 |  #13

I recently sold my 17-55 2.8 and bought the 16-35 f4. I had (still own it) a 70D at the time and the crop sensor with the 17-55 was an awesome combo for a general lens. Not only was it fast for low light, but add the IS in and it was an ultimate crop sensor hand held walk around lens.

Now my reasons for selling, I was about to purchase a 5d3 and wanted a wide angle zoom for landscapes on the ff, so I sold the 17-55 to help fund the 16-35. I did this with the idea of buying a 24-105 for both the 70d, (which I kept for its video capabilities whilst on family holidays) and the 5d3 as a general walk about lens.

Although I miss the 17-55 very much, I don't regret selling it to buy the 16-35. Yes you will lose a bit of reach as a general lens on a crop, but the 16-35 is sharper and the IS, I feel, works noticeably more better.

In saying that, a good second hand 17-55 will be a darn sight cheaper, and fill a void perfectly until you get a ff body, then sell it and more than likely get your money back if you look after it.




  
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Jan 29, 2016 07:21 |  #14
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I've owned a few of the mentioned lenses, here are my thoughts:

Canon 17-40L:
+ Great build quality
+ Sharp and rich colours
+ Fullframe lens
- No IS and relatively slow aperture

Canon 17-55:
+ Great image quality
+ 2.8 and IS
+ Decent zoom range
- Really underwhelming build quality
- Focus ring loses smoothness over time

Sigma 18-35 (currently own):
+ Outstanding image quality
+ 1.8 (!!)
+ Build to the highest standards
+ Amazing focus and zoom ring
- Big and heavy
- Short zoom range

I can honestly say that nothing comes close to what the Sigma lens is. Sharp straight from f/1.8 and it just has that professional feeling.


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Jan 29, 2016 07:36 |  #15

For a crop sensor body, the 17-55 2.8 is a no brainer to me. The only reason I sold it was when I moved to FF. If you're sure you'll get a FF body in the future to replace your crop body or complement it, I should get the 16-35 f4 IS.


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16-35 f/4L IS or 16-35 f2.8 L II?
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