Approve the Cookies
This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and our Privacy Policy.
OK
Index  •   • New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear  •   • Reviews
Guest
New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear  •   • Reviews
Register to forums    Log in

 
FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 21 Jul 2009 (Tuesday) 07:37
Search threadPrev/next
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)

Once more: 17-40L vs. 17-55 2.8IS on crop camera

 
DeMar
Mostly Lurking
16 posts
Joined Jul 2009
     
Jul 21, 2009 07:37 |  #1

Hello,

my first post here, but have been reading the forums for several years actually.. I´ve been practising shooting with G-series cameras and borrowed some DSLR´s for few years, and now it is finally time to move to my first own DSLR :D.

Sorry for the longish thread but I do have problem with choosing the right glass to start with. I think I know what I want, or maybe at least what I like, but still I am in complete darkness with the decission. I´ll try to be as precise about the backround info and my needs so if I´d get to the concluson with Your help.. :)

The backround is, I´m gonna start with a crop camera wich will be 40D, due the good reputation and current price level. As camera it seems to have everything I need for now. I have been using 20D and 450D and have some experience on the crop bodies. But, I am hoping to have financial possibilities to move on to FF in 2-3 years, and I would like it wouldn´t mean selling all the glasses and buying new ones, but I could use as many of them as possible (they get different of course, but still). This is not fully limiting factor (taking out all EF-S´s), but something I would like.

I am kind of all-around-shooter, havent really focused on any specific area of photography at least yet. I do travel quite a lot, take pics of inside and outside parties, some exhibitions, would like to learn sports shooting a bit (irrelevant to this question tough), like portraits, and over all shoot quite a lot inside. And like to to go hiking in wilderness, so some landscapes included too.

Still awake? Ok, to the main question.. I wan´t to have a good quality all around zoom lens. At the beginning I can afford only one glass, maybe one prime too. Later on I will get 70-200L 4 IS, so my tele needs are covered by that. But the problem is the same many seemed to have also, choosing the right all-arounder for the crop body.

As in the topic, I have narrowed the options to two possible Canon lenses, being the 17-40L and 17-55 2.8IS. Many would say, why only Canon lenses, as there is many other options cheaper and equally good if not even better. Well, for that argument I have no good answer, I simply wan´t to have Canon glass now and that´s it. Well one thing being the warranty issues, anything wrong with the combo it is at least one company fixing it (maybe).. So, I think these are the two I need to choose from, altough good ideas and any other opinions are very very welcome.

I know this is annoying to bring this very same 17-40 vs 17-55 question back again, as there has been half dozen long threaths about this, I´ve read them all (twice), searched through hundreds of lens example threaths, and interviewed all the semi-pro photographers I know about this, and still I cannot make my mind.. :cry: Seems there is fans for 17-40L even with the crop, but around 70-80% of the people would go for the 17-55.

I also already made my mind (I thought), wich was the 17-55 as so many people seem to recommend it, and yes, it is superior in everything at least on paper. Faster yes, as wide yes, reach yes, IS yes. Yes yes yes yes.

BUT, what mostly annoyes me about it, is that after looked through hundres of actual pic´s people have taken with it, in many (most) of them the colours seem somehow "pale" or "cold". Don´t know really the right word for it in english but somehow they are not very colourful, even nice and in great harmony. Is it just me or does anyone agree? Then when I look the shots taken with 17-40L they seem so rich in contrast and specially in colours. Altough I didn´t always check wich body was used, could it be the reason, as more likely people do use FF bodies with 17-40 and obviously just opposite with 17-55. Maybe that can affect, you tell me? Anyway, this one thing has stopped me to struggle with the decission for several weeks now - now I need some more opinions with good arguments and I just go to the damn shop and buy something. :rolleyes:

Another, but bit more minor thing, is the build quality I hear people complaining. I would need to take this all-arounder to the hiking trips with me, it will get some dirt / shake / even few drops of water on it. Will it be a problem with 17-55 is subjective I guess but this bothers me a bit too. And yes I know the body isn´t weather proof either, still don´t think it would harm to have well built objective.

Whoa don´t know if anyone is even reading this far but let me try to summarise what I appreciate on the lens I need and what´s not so important.

Most important features for me:

Wide angle and reach for multipurpose use
travelling, indoor, party hassling (usually related to heavy drinking meaning shaky hands AND targets ;)), landscapes, exhibitions, portraits. After some testing I find 24mm on crop not wide enough for me, but then again I feel at least first 50% of 10-22 are too wide for my taste. And, I can borrow 10-22 when really needed for some special. So, 17mm is the wide angle I´d like on crop. Then there should be as much reach as possible, concidering other features are not suffering from it too much.

Quality of photos
Like warm rich colours. I don´t think sharpness is any issue here. Don´t like the barrell effect but not so big deal for me. Soft corners not biggy either, but don´t like it really either. I do hardly any photo editing, so the lens should fit my taste and don´t want to be fixing some certain problem in every picture no way.

Overall speed of the lens
Speed of course, but I´m not sure if f4 is problem outside, and then again 2.8 is not fast enough for low light inside pictures anyway. I am ok using flash inside, and will have some fast prime some day too. IS I´d like, but for some reason don´t give too much value for it in shorter lens, could be wrong tough.. But what I would love, is as fast focus as ever possible. Tried my friend´s 75-300 and could drink cup of coffee before it was focused, it´s whole anohter glass I know, but still I really hate slow(ish) AF.

Second important things

Build quality
Like the quality, no rational reason for it. Except would like it to last for long, and some sealing and good materials wouldn´t harm in the wilderness where I can take only one glass maybe.

Compatiblity for FF
I would give + for the glass to fit FF some day, will upgrade when the prices are on lower level step or two. Would be nice to have UW lens so this goes for 17-40L sure. Altough, selling the 17-55 shouldn´t be any problem what so ever.

No matter / not so interested

Price in certain limits, budget about 1000 usd / eur for this glass (unfortunately it is eur in here..).

Small errors in the image (small barrell, soft corners etc), if noticeable on every image I mean

Speed if I need flash in low(ish) light anyway

Ultra sharpness

If it says "L" on the lense, doesen´t matter but the features do

Puuh... So here we are. What a heck I´m gonna do? :rolleyes:

Thank you in advance, and have a great shots and warm summer! :D

Br, Sami


40D / 50 1.8II / 10-22 / 24-105L / 70-200 F4 IS L / EX430

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)
roger767
Member
190 posts
Joined May 2007
     
Jul 21, 2009 07:49 |  #2

If you don't mind investing in EFs lenses than buy the 17-55IS; its sharper, faster and has IS.


www.rogerschooneveld.n​l (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
gasrocks
Cream of the Crop
Avatar
13,431 posts
Likes: 1
Joined Mar 2005
Location: Portage, Wisconsin USA
     
Jul 21, 2009 07:54 |  #3

Without reading all of that long post. no contest: ef-s 17-55/2.8 IS is a better lens in many ways.


GEAR LIST
_______________

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
bohdank
Cream of the Crop
Avatar
14,060 posts
Likes: 6
Joined Jan 2008
Location: Montreal, Canada
     
Jul 21, 2009 07:56 |  #4

Probably the 17-55 is the best choice BUT I have used a 10-22 for full full body portraits and the perspective given off was pleasant. I have a buch shot in clubs (bounced flash off very dark wood ceilings/walls) but can't post any samples since they are of friends and I respect people's privacy.

Since you can borrow one, go for the 17-55.


Bohdan - I may be, and probably am, completely wrong.
Gear List

Montreal Concert, Event and Portrait Photographer (external link)
Flickr (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
snatiep
Senior Member
Avatar
540 posts
Joined Jan 2007
Location: St. Paul, Minnesota
     
Jul 21, 2009 08:04 |  #5

Welcome to POTN DeMar!!!

I read in your post that you hope to go FF in the future. If I were in your shoes, I would go with the 17-40 just for that reason. Of course you could always sell the 17-55 when you got a FF camera.


Nate
Gear List

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
TaDa
...as cool as Perry
Avatar
6,742 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Feb 2008
Location: New York
     
Jul 21, 2009 08:24 |  #6

17-55. One of the best lenses that I ever owned.


Name is Peter and here is my gear:
Canon 5D II, Canon 7D, Canon 40D
Glass - Zeiss 21 f/2.8 ZE, Canon 35 f/1.4L, Canon 40 f/2.8 STM, Canon 24-70 f/2.8
L, Canon 85 f/1.2L II, Canon 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, Canon 500 f/4L IS
Speedlite 580ex II, 430ex - Gitzo GT-3541XLS w/ Arca B1

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
CosmoKid
Goldmember
Avatar
4,235 posts
Likes: 10
Joined May 2009
Location: NJ
     
Jul 21, 2009 08:31 |  #7

buy the best lens for your current camera now. who knows what happens in the future? maybe you like crop. the 17-40 on a crop is totally different than the 17-40 on a FF.

Buy used and if you really go crop in a couple of years you can sell any EFS lens for a little loss. The 17-55 is a great crop lens.

the


Joe- 2 bodies, L 2.8 zoom trilogy and a couple of primes
iRocktheShot.com (external link) - Portfolio (external link)

Gear/Feedback
Facebook "Fan" Page (external link) -

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
wimg
Cream of the Crop
Avatar
6,655 posts
Likes: 31
Joined Jan 2007
Location: Netherlands, EU
     
Jul 21, 2009 08:31 |  #8

Hi Sami,

Welcome to POTN, to start off with :D.

Regardign yoru post, if I add up the body and glass, that seems to me to account for about 1600 euros. You are concerned with colour a lot, and robustness. You will only get this partly with a 40D and 17-40L, and besides, if you want to make the 17-40 shine, you really need FF.

Now let's look at your most important points:
1) WA and reach for multi-purpose use
Considering the points you mention here, you have to ask yourself if 17 mm on crop is really going to be enough.
2) Quality of photos
I think personally you may gain more from a slightly different approach in this regard, but I will come back to that further down.
3) Overall speed of lens
You can shoot with a 40D at 3200 iso, which is quite good, a little noisy, yes, but usable if you do do some PP, or shoot in B&W at that speed. 1600 iso is good.

When reading your essay, and the points you were making about subjects and IQ, and in addition that you plan on moving to FF, I'd like to suggest to go FF right now. A good used 5D Classic can be had for around 900 euros currently, or even less, which would leave you with a fair amount of money for a lens. I'll coem back to that later.

The 5D will provide you with images you seem to be longing for, with almost any lens. Furthermore, it is totally usable for low light at 3200 iso. From my own experience I would say it is about one stop better noise wise than the 40D at high isos, but there is something about the IQ this camera delivers that can't be beat. No, it is not a camera built for sports, but with the extra assist points it isn't bad either for the occasional use as such, except of course for the reach. And of course, the VF is a lot brighter. The UI is not as good as that of the 40D, but that is something I think one can live with for the extra IQ. I found that after getting the 5D, I stopped using the 40D.

F/4 vs F/2.8.
There is a stop difference yes, which also means doubling or halving shutter speed, or doubling or halving iso. As mentioned, IME, the 5D is a stop better than the 40D noise wise at high isos, so you end up with the same shutter speed for F/2.8 with 40D and F/4 on 5D. Furthermore, there is a DoF advantage on the 5D: DoF on FF is about 1 1/3 stop thinner than the same f-stop on APS-C. IOW, at F/4 the DoF on FF looks like the DoF on APS-C at F/2.5. This allows, IMO, for more creativity with DoF.

Finally, the lens.
Ok, of course my advice here is to get a 5D, of course, so I hope you forgive me for that. Lenswise, there are a few options, IMO.
You could still go with the 17-40L and stay nicely within budget. Maybe even get a 50 F/1.8 Mk II in addition - it is a fun lens on the 5D. This will give you the stuff you'd want to shoot, except portraits, but for environmental portraits.
Another option could be the 24-70L or the 24-105L IS. I think the latter, used in good condition, may be the way to go initially. It is F/4. but has IS, and it includes all of FLs required for the things you want to shoot most. Yes, it has some distortion at the 24 mm end, but that is simple barrel distortion, which can be fixed very easily in PP if so required.

In short, considering your concerns and interests, and your future plans, my advice would be for you to go for a 5D Classic with 24-105L, unless you want to do sports shooting as a main interest. This will give you all of the qualities you require or want, just with a slightly older user interface (although the UI of the 40D is slightly out of date as well by now).

And I also think the budget for this option is likely going to be about the same as for a 40D with 17-55 F/2.8 IS, which, IMO, would be the next best option, if you go APS-C, unless you can save up a little more for a 50D.

HTH, kind regards, Wim


EOS R & EOS 5 (analog) with a gaggle of primes & 2 zooms, OM-D E-M1 Mk II & Pen-F with 10 primes, 6 zooms, 3 Metabones adapters/speedboosters​, and an accessory plague

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Tawcan
Goldmember
Avatar
2,679 posts
Joined Apr 2004
Location: Vancouver Canada
     
Jul 21, 2009 08:50 |  #9

I went through similar thought process a few months ago. I have a Canon XSi and I plan to move to FF in the near future. After going to several camera stores to check out both 17-55 and 17-40 I decided to go with 17-40. I shoot mostly landscapes so flare control is very important to me. Also I didn't want to go through the pain of selling the 17-55 then buying the 17-40 later. So far I've been pretty happy with my 17-40. IS isn't really that much of a concern since I can handhold the lens around 1/4 shutter speed @ 17 mm and get reasonable sharp pictures.

Whatever your choice is, both lenses are great, it just depends what you want to shoot and where you want to go.


boblai.com (external link) |Facebook Fanpage (external link) | Flickr (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Wilt
Reader's Digest Condensed version of War and Peace [POTN Vol 1]
Avatar
41,780 posts
Gallery: 1 photo
Likes: 2562
Joined Aug 2005
Location: Belmont, CA
     
Jul 21, 2009 09:22 |  #10

Tawcan wrote in post #8317587 (external link)
I went through similar thought process a few months ago. I have a Canon XSi and I plan to move to FF in the near future. After going to several camera stores to check out both 17-55 and 17-40 I decided to go with 17-40. I shoot mostly landscapes so flare control is very important to me. Also I didn't want to go through the pain of selling the 17-55 then buying the 17-40 later. So far I've been pretty happy with my 17-40. IS isn't really that much of a concern since I can handhold the lens around 1/4 shutter speed @ 17 mm and get reasonable sharp pictures.

Whatever your choice is, both lenses are great, it just depends what you want to shoot and where you want to go.

You are likely to be fooling yourself. Zoom in on a photo taken at 17mm FL at 1/4 on an APS-C body, and see for yourself how poor the edge definition is (compared to if you had used a tripod mounted camera instead of hand held)!


You need to give me OK to edit your image and repost! Keep POTN alive and well with member support https://photography-on-the.net/forum/donate.p​hp
Canon dSLR system, Olympus OM 35mm system, Bronica ETRSi 645 system, Horseman LS 4x5 system, Metz flashes, Dynalite studio lighting, and too many accessories to mention

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Scott ­ M
Goldmember
3,169 posts
Gallery: 70 photos
Likes: 261
Joined May 2008
Location: Michigan
     
Jul 21, 2009 11:21 |  #11

DeMar wrote:
After some testing I find 24mm on crop not wide enough for me, but then again I feel at least first 50% of 10-22 are too wide for my taste.

If you feel that a 10-22mm is too wide for your shooting style on a crop camera, then you probably will not be happy with the 17-40mm once you move to a FF body anyway. It's almost the same equivalent view on a FF as 10-22mm is on a crop. So, one of the main reasons you are considering the 17-40 (FF compatibility) is irrelevant in your circumstance.

I would get the EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8. It's a wider focal range, a stop faster and has IS. In short, it's a much more versatile lens for a crop camera.


Photo Gallery (external link)
Gear List

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Citizensmith
Cream of the Crop
Avatar
6,386 posts
Gallery: 1 photo
Likes: 7
Joined Dec 2004
Location: Sacramento, CA USA
     
Jul 21, 2009 11:31 |  #12

From my perspective.
17-55 wins on low light usability (2.8 and IS) and slightly better zoom range.
The lenses are even on optics.
17-40 winds by a long way on build quality.

I owned a 17-40 for a long time, but the f/4 and the -40 part of the range were frequently limiting. I tried the Sigma 24-60 2.8 as an alternative, and that was a really nice lens, but the 24- part wasn't wide enough. I tried the Sigma 17-70, another good, similar lens. I still use one at work, its a solid alternative. In the end though I decided to sink the cash into a 17-55, having sold off a couple of other lenses. No regrets, it works great and is my most used lens.


My POTN Gallery, Complete gear list,
Tradition - Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
eelnoraa
Goldmember
1,798 posts
Likes: 37
Joined May 2007
     
Jul 21, 2009 11:54 as a reply to  @ Citizensmith's post |  #13

No contest, if you are not planning to go FF in near future, get 17-55IS


5Di, 5Diii, 28, 50, 85, 16-35II, 24-105, 70-200F2.8 IS

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Tawcan
Goldmember
Avatar
2,679 posts
Joined Apr 2004
Location: Vancouver Canada
     
Jul 21, 2009 12:25 |  #14

Wilt wrote in post #8317717 (external link)
You are likely to be fooling yourself. Zoom in on a photo taken at 17mm FL at 1/4 on an APS-C body, and see for yourself how poor the edge definition is (compared to if you had used a tripod mounted camera instead of hand held)!

I did said reasonable sharp image not razor sharp. ;)


boblai.com (external link) |Facebook Fanpage (external link) | Flickr (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Glenn ­ NK
Goldmember
Avatar
4,630 posts
Likes: 2
Joined Oct 2006
Location: Victoria, BC
     
Jul 21, 2009 12:27 |  #15

Wilt wrote in post #8317717 (external link)
You are likely to be fooling yourself. Zoom in on a photo taken at 17mm FL at 1/4 on an APS-C body, and see for yourself how poor the edge definition is (compared to if you had used a tripod mounted camera instead of hand held)!

So true - I'm starting to wonder if many of the "my lens is soft" posts are due to a belief that a camera can be hand-held at shutter speeds of 1/25th or 1/10th second.

Last year I met a photographer while doing some flower closeups, she was snapping away hand held. A few weeks ago she was sporting a tripod. I asked why, and she said, "what a difference - my pictures are so much sharper with a tripod".


When did voluptuous become voluminous?

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)

4,363 views & 0 likes for this thread
Once more: 17-40L vs. 17-55 2.8IS on crop camera
FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
AAA
x 1600
y 1600

Jump to forum...   •  Rules   •  Index   •  New posts   •  RTAT   •  'Best of'   •  Gallery   •  Gear   •  Reviews   •  Member list   •  Polls   •  Image rules   •  Search   •  Password reset

Not a member yet?
Register to forums
Registered members may log in to forums and access all the features: full search, image upload, follow forums, own gear list and ratings, likes, more forums, private messaging, thread follow, notifications, own gallery, all settings, view hosted photos, own reviews, see more and do more... and all is free. Don't be a stranger - register now and start posting!


COOKIES DISCLAIMER: This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and to our privacy policy.
Privacy policy and cookie usage info.


POWERED BY AMASS forum software 2.1forum software
version 2.1 /
code and design
by Pekka Saarinen ©
for photography-on-the.net

Latest registered member is sandyn1024
661 guests, 236 members online
Simultaneous users record so far is 15144, that happened on Nov 22, 2018

Photography-on-the.net Digital Photography Forums is the website for photographers and all who love great photos, camera and post processing techniques, gear talk, discussion and sharing. Professionals, hobbyists, newbies and those who don't even own a camera -- all are welcome regardless of skill, favourite brand, gear, gender or age. Registering and usage is free.