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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 24 Mar 2016 (Thursday) 21:30
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Your thoughts on the 17-40 4L?

 
johnf3f
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Mar 25, 2016 20:29 |  #16

Have a look at Scott M's images. This is what the Canon 17-40 is all about.
If you want to compare specifications, look at distortion figure, pixel peep etc then this is not the lens for you. If you just want to produce beautiful images with stunning colour rendition the 17-40 is one of the best. I suspect that Scott M has done little processing with that first image. In my 9 years of using my 17-40 this is what I came to expect if the light was right, as I say the colour rendition is superb on this lens.
True the 17-40 is not the sharpest tool in the box and it does distort quite a lot at the short end, but these are aspects of the lens that can be corrected (in the case of distortion) or better still used to your advantage. Photograph a whole car with the 17-40 from a low angle at 2 feet - very eye catching to say the least.

There is a fly in the ointment (there always is!) and that is the Canon 16-35 F4 L IS. It is a "better" lens in almost all respects and I am happy that I traded my 17-40 to get one. However that doesn't degrade the 17-40 in any way. Although it's specs and theoretical performance don't look good these days, just try one and I think that you will be very pleasantly surprised!

If the Canon 16-35 F4 is within your budget then I would say go for that lens, but if it isn't then the 17-40 is still a VERY viable lens and (in my opinion) fully it's equal in many circumstances - but not all.


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artyH
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Mar 26, 2016 09:16 |  #17

I have the 17-40L and use it for travel on full frame and as a general purpose lens on crop, when I want a smaller package.
There are some advantages to the 17-40 that make me want to keep using it and not upgrade:
The 17-40L does not change length as you zoom. The outer barrel stays a constant length, while the inner elements move. This makes the lens pretty durable.
The lens is relatively compact and light for a full frame wide zoom.
Optics are good and images have excellent color and contrast.
The lens goes to 40 mm, and I like having that range on the long end.
The lens is flare resistant.
I am happy enough with my 17-40 that I don't see the 16-35 as an upgrade. I prefer the compact size of the lens.
There are some good things about the 16-35, like IS and better performance in the corners (in distortion and resolution). However there are also downsides in terms of size and weight.
I am keeping my 17-40L and not "upgrading."




  
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ebiggs
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Mar 29, 2016 03:06 |  #18

My 17-40 is good enough that I don't want the 16-35mm yet. I have had the 17-40mm for years and still love it.


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Moncho
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Mar 29, 2016 13:35 |  #19

So it seems like the 17-40 is good enough. I was thinking about getting it as well, but I don't shoot enough in this range to upgrade from my ancient tamron 20-40mm. But the 16-35f4 is on my "maybe someday" list.


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ebiggs
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Mar 30, 2016 10:28 as a reply to  @ Moncho's post |  #20

I just bought a Tokina AT-X 16-28mm f/2.8 Pro FX Lens. So far, a week, I am super impressed with it. You might want to take a look at one.


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gary88
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Mar 30, 2016 10:45 |  #21

I've had my 17-40 for over 8 years now, the only lens that has followed me through every camera I've owned. I'll never get rid of it, the colors and contrast it produces are stunning. Shooting with a CPL the colors are so vivid and beautiful. Yes it's not the sharpest wide open and distortion can be pretty noticeable at times but nothing basic RAW editing can't handle.


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gonzogolf
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Mar 30, 2016 11:12 |  #22

how do you plan to use it? most of us who are happy with the lens use it primarily as a landscape lens. For that purpose its a great lens and the f4 and corner sharpness issues are insignificant, especially given the price. If you want to use it for photojournalism, event work, or some other indoor purpose then the aperture might be an isssue.




  
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Alveric
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Mar 30, 2016 12:03 |  #23
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I used mine mostly for architecture (exteriors and interiors), some landscape, and... street photography and events. The 'smaller' aperture was never an issue in low light situations, as I tend to stop down most of the time anyway. That being said, I use a camera with a pentaprism; if your camera has a pentamirror, which is dimmer than a prism, then f/4 might be an issue for viewfinder use in low light.


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fly9
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Mar 31, 2016 11:26 |  #24

I had the 17-40L a few years ago and sold after a year or so because I started shooting less. Now that I'm getting back into photography again, I repurchased the lens because I loved it so much. Partially because of the cost/quality.


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snegron
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Apr 05, 2016 19:49 |  #25

Looks like the price went up $50 today. ߘ I'll never understand Canon's pricing strategy.




  
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Moncho
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Apr 05, 2016 22:58 as a reply to  @ snegron's post |  #26

They heard you wanted one. Supply and demand.


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ma11rats
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Post edited over 3 years ago by ma11rats. (2 edits in all)
     
Apr 05, 2016 23:48 |  #27

Last year I took an evaluation loan from canon of the 16-35f4IS to take on a trip to cali. I loved it. It's extremely sharp in the corners, had minimal distortion, very very little CA and handled flare very well. For it's length, it's not actually that heavy. It's a solid plastic that reminded me of the 100L. I had it on a 6d and I never got tired of carrying it around. IS will help at shots under 1/50. I know I was happy it had it when shooting flowers in the morning after a cup of coffee and the sun was barely out as well as shots at dusk. I returned it, reluctantly haha, after my week. I had plans on buying it until my need for a longer length lens took over. So I went ahead and picked up the 135L because I couldn't afford two new lenses. I've had the 16-35f4 on my wish list and 'used watch list' ever since.


Then last month I had a wedding and I wanted to get the couple on the stairs in front of the doors of the church and get the whole building. My 2nd let me use his 17-40 and I was impressed with it. You can visually see the distortion as you change angles with the the camera to your eye. It was more apparent than what I remember the 16-35f4 showed. But I was able to get the whole building w/ minimal keystone distortion(building tipping backwards) He let me use the 17-40 for the whole bridal portraits(had the 135L on a 2nd camera too). Honestly my only complaint was that the zoom ring is very small and is pretty close to the mount, that I kept grabbing at the focus ring on accident. I'm sure that it would only be a few sessions where I'd get used to it but it was something I noticed.

When I got home and saw my images, shot at f4 or f4.5 I was very happy with them. And I'm a pixel peeper. Were the edges as sharp as the 16-35? No, not at all. But for what I would be mostly using my wide angle (my 35f2IS sometimes isn't wide enough) for I'm thinking I may just go find a clean, used 17-40, hopefully at/around $450 and I would be stoked.

I do think that the 16-35f4 IS is worth twice the price (used vs used) but currently I have other gear I'm wanting to pick up as well and have to take that into consideration.


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snegron
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Post edited over 3 years ago by snegron.
     
Apr 06, 2016 17:10 |  #28

Moncho wrote in post #17962303 (external link)
They heard you wanted one. Supply and demand.


It gets even better;

A couple of hours ago I set out to Best Buy to purchase the 17-40. Stopped at the bank first, but had trouble with my card (entered wrong pin number too many times, so I got locked out). Then it started to pour rain like some sort of apocolyptic storm, and of course I left my umbrella home. Traffic was backed up due to rush hour (plus the rain). My kids were laughing the whole time and told me it must be a sign or some sort of omen. So, I turned around and drove back home. No lens for me today.




  
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ksbal
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Apr 06, 2016 17:30 |  #29

I started off with a 16-35mm for about 3 days. tried to love that lens. That copy was used, and decentered. traded it back and got the 17-40 and get along just fine. I don't shoot primarily landscapes, but I do bring it out and stick it on the FF when I want a different perspective.

More here, but here is one:


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snegron
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Apr 06, 2016 20:00 |  #30

ksbal wrote in post #17963089 (external link)
I started off with a 16-35mm for about 3 days. tried to love that lens. That copy was used, and decentered. traded it back and got the 17-40 and get along just fine. I don't shoot primarily landscapes, but I do bring it out and stick it on the FF when I want a different perspective.

More here, but here is one:



Thanks!

A few minutes ago I went to see both lenses at my local big box retailer. Comparing borh lenses (the 17-40 and the 16-35) my impression was that the 17-40 felt better built; more solid like what I expect an L lens to feel like.

However, after much internal deliberation I ended up getting the 16-35 for one reason only: IS.

Had the 16-35 not had IS, I would have purchased the 17-40 hands down. Even the sales person was telling me how much more she liked the 17-40.

Hopefully I didn't make a $1000 mistake... :(




  
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Your thoughts on the 17-40 4L?
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