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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:16 am 
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Hi Everybody.
I'm thinking about upgrading my camera and lenses. I currently have 350D with Tamron 18-200 and this "kit" is nice, but I want better results and better performance (faster zoom etc.).
I really like the new 40D but the bigger problem are the lenses. After deciding on the lenses I'll have to decide about upgrading my camera or stay with the 350D for now.
The thing is that I like to travel a lot, so I don't want a package which is too heavy and/or too large. Also, I like to use both wide lenses (for views) and tele lenses (for wild life).
As for the zoom lens, I'm thinking about 70-300 USM IS or 70-200 USM (both are reasonably priced). About the wide lens it's much harder. The simple choice is the 17-85 IS USM, but people told me the quality is not great. The problem is that buying the 17-40L USM for example will make me change lenses all the time.
I also saw the 24-105L USM IS which looks great, but this will force me to buy another wide lens (something like the 10-22), and this is heavy and expensive.
If anyone has any input about the choices I wrote, or have another option which I didn't think of, I'll appreciate it very much.
I have to say that I'm not a pro, I'm an advanced amateur, but I don't want to be a bit dissapointed with my results (which I sometimes am).
Thanks.
Liron.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 12:52 pm 
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Hi amitzil,

A warm welcome to the CameraLabs forums. You've set yourself an interesting upgrade scenario!

On the face of it the EF-S 17-85mm f4~5.6 IS USM (Gordon's review here) is the natural choice but it has some optical issues. I have had my EF 24-105mm f4L IS USM for a year now (review) and have never regretted the purchase but I rarely need anything shorter than 24mm. If you are willing to change lenses to go shorter than 24mm have you considered the Sigma AF 10-20mm f/4-5.6 HSM EX DC (Photozone review here, SLRGear review here)? It's arguably a better fit with the 24-105 in terms of zoom range than the 17-40L and you get that ultra-wide angle capability. It's quite a bit cheaper than the 17-40L as well so hopefully that keeps the 24-105 in budget.

I have the IS version of the EF 70-200mm f/4L USM zoom but both versions are optically excellent. The EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 USM IS has received a great review (here) so I think you would be happy with either but, for my money, the IS capability would weigh heavily if I were choosing between the two lenses you mention.

By the way, I've moved this thread to the Canon forum and deleted your later duplicate thread in that forum. It's not a problem but your question is Canon specific so it is best in that forum. Hope you don't mind.

Bob.

P.S. I have linked to several reviews above. Both the Photozone and SLRGear sites also have reviews of a number of other lenses that you might be interested in.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 3:10 pm 
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Hi there,
Before getting on the subject of lenses, just let me say, upgrading to 40D from 350D changed my whole experience. I know part of the reason is psychological, 350 is not a bad camera, but regardless of the actual picture you take, the feeling of taking it is on a completely different level with the 40D.
Anyway,
I've been using the 17-85 for over a year now and find it quite useful and I don't recall ever noticing the mentioned optical imperfections ruining a shot. (maybe I'm just not good enough to notice them! :))
Considering the zooms, I've been planning (saving actually!) to go for the 70-200 f/4L IS and consider having full time manual focus and IS as essential so even if I couldn't afford the L, I'd go for something that has these features.

Anyway, I just thought hearing an opinion might be good.
I hope you enjoy whatever you choose to buy in the end.
All the best.
Erinc.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 9:07 pm 
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Hi amitzil and Erinc, welcome to the fourms!

On the subject of wide angle, I can also highly recommend the Canon EF-S 10-22mm, although if you buy this and a telephoto zoom, you will be missing out on a 22-70mm range, which is pretty important for most people!

As a PS to the 17-85mm, it sure ain't perfect, but it's still one of the best general purpose lenses for Canon EF-S bodies...


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 9:29 pm 
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Hi Guys.
Thanks for your replies, I still have some dilemas though:
1. Is upgrading the camera to 40D so important right now? I'm aware that it's a totaly different feeling and has additional features. But is there a big difference in picture quality?
2. About the 17-85, I still want to check other options. I want to buy a lens that will stay with me for a long time. Any other options that cover the same zoom more or less with better quality? I'll be happy to hear someone that is not satisfied with the 17-85, it will help a lot.
3. Between the 70-300 and the 70-200L, the problem is that the 70-200L IS is much more expensive than the one without the IS. And the 70-300 USM IS has the latest IS but the USM doesn't have full time manual focus and it actually gets longer while focusing (and the ring moves), so it's a down side.
Still have much to think about.
I'll appriciate any other input.
Thanks again.
Liron.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 10:04 pm 
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Hi Liron,

My choices shouldn't necessarily be your choices but I'll express an opinion here:
    1. Stick with the 350D for now. IMO you will get a better immediate return investing in good glass and the body can always be upgraded later.

    2. Use the cash to invest in a EF 24-105m f/4L IS USM provided you are comfortable with its size and weight and 24mm gives you a wide enough field of view for general use. If 24mm isn't short enough and the budget (or the inconvenience) won't support an additional wide angle lens then the EF-S 17-85mm f4-5.6 IS USM looks like your best bet. You've seen Gordon's review but for additional tests check here and here.

    3. If the EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM is in budget as a result of deferring the camera body upgrade then remember that this is one of the few lenses that Canon advertises as compatible with the EF 1.4x Converter. This isn't a cheap piece of glass either, I'm afraid, and I haven't tried it yet but it effectively gives you a fully functional 100-280mm f/5.6 IS USM if mounted behind the EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM.
Final thoughts Here in the UK there is a Canon cashback promotion which gives £35 back on the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, £20 back on the EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM, £55 back on the EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM that Gordon mentioned and £100 back on the EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM or £70 back on the EF 70-200mm f/4L USM. 8) The offer may, of course, be different if you aren't based in the UK.

Bob.

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OM-D E-M1 + ED 12-40mm f/2.8, H-F007014E, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 45mm 1:1.8, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 75mm 1:1.8, L-RS014150E.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 10:43 pm 
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Hi Amitzil

Have had my 70-300 USM IS few a few months now and am very impressed with it. Excellent for outside portraits/action shots of the family. Nice and sharp and really vivid clours. Requires little, if any, post processing. IS works well. I am using with a 400D and its size actually makes that camera more comfortable to hold (not that I find the 400 uncomfortable now I'm used to it).

Like you I have thought long and hard about the 17-85 USM but have read enough poor reviews not to buy it - I know I will be disappointed with the sharpness. I will probably get the 24 - 105L lens when I can afford it.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:36 pm 
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Hi.
Thanks for your advices.
Bob, I'm located in Israel, so the cashback is irrelevant. I don't know the prices in the UK, but here it's more expensive than in the US (for example, the 24-105L is about 1350US$ and the 70-200L USM IS is 1500US$).

Anyway, I still have some time until my purchase (saving money, and maybe I'll buy it in the US in January), but for now I'm thinking about going for the 24-105L (hope 24mm will be wide enough), and the 70-300 USM IS for the tele. With the 24-105L, the 70-200L IS is too expensive.

Thanks again for you help, and if someone has relevant comments, I'll be happy to hear.
Liron.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:11 pm 
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Hi Liron,

I'm sorry and surprised to hear that the cashback promotion isn't running in Israel. Maybe you should get in touch with Canon Israel (mailto:info@canon.co.il) and bend their corporate ears. :idea:

I guess the easiest way to check whether 24mm will be short enough is to browse through some of your wider-angle shots and have a look at the EXIF data - here I'm assuming that your Tamron reports this to the 350D and so the actual focal length used is included. As I mentioned before, the 70-300 lens has had good reviews and at a full-frame camera equivalent focal length of 480mm that IS capability is going to be very useful.

Quite academic, I know, but for comparison, and using a £1 = $2 conversion rate, the best prices in the UK for the models you mention are: 24-105 - $1200, 70-200L - $800, 70-300 - $660. Bear in mind that these figures include 17.5% VAT (sales tax).

Good luck.

Bob.

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OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 7:57 pm 
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Hi Bob.
I use 18mm today quite often with my Tamron, mainly when I'm taking pictures of views and buildings. That's why I'm worried about the 24-105L. I wish Canon had a lens similar to the 24-105L but for cropped sensors, maybe like the 17-85 but L (which means better glass and less barrel effect at 18mm).

About the prices, I have to say that it seems that the UK is not cheap either. In the US (from B&H site) the 70-300 is 550$, 24-105L is 1060$ and the 70-200L (not IS) is 560$.

Liron

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 8:50 pm 
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Hi again.
I talked to my friend today, he has the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 and he's very satisfied with it. He also mentioned the Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS USM as an option for a main lens.
I'll appriciate any comments on these lenses.
Thanks.
Liron

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 9:24 pm 
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amitzil wrote:
... Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 ... Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS USM
.
appreciate any comments on these lenses

Unfortunately I haven't used either lens but both SLRGear and Photozone have reviewed both of these lenses so you might be able to get some idea of their relative merits.

Bob.

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OM-D E-M1 + ED 12-40mm f/2.8, H-F007014E, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 45mm 1:1.8, M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 75mm 1:1.8, L-RS014150E.
OM-D E-M5, H-PS14042E, Gitzo GT1541T, Arca-Swiss Z1 DP ball-head.
Astrophotography: TEC 140 'scope, FLI ML16803 camera, ASA DDM60 Pro mount.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2007 2:04 pm 
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Hi guys.
I'm opening this again.
Generally I decided to go for the Canon 17-55 f/2.8 which got great reviews. I went today to buy it, but once I held it I realized it is a huge lens. I didn't have the chance to really play with it or connect it to my 350D, but it looked and felt really big.
Then I checked the 17-40L, I played with it a little and it felt very nice.
The problem is to decide which one to buy. I don't think that I need the f/2.8 that much, or even the IS but I'm afraid about the gap to 70mm (I currently have 75-300 but planning to buy the 70-200L).
I mostly use my camera when I travel, so I prefer the lighter (and cheaper) 17-40L but the only thing that bothers me is the 40-55 difference (gap of 40-70 or 55-70).
I looked at some of my pictures and there are quite a few between 40 and 55, on the other hand, maybe with the 17-40 I can get closer a bit in many situations.
What do you say?
Thanks.
Liron

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2007 11:12 pm 
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Hi, we compared the pros and cons of both lenses here:

http://www.cameralabs.com/features/Cano ... s_upgrade/


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:42 am 
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Hi again.
Finally, after a lot of thinking and checking I bought the 17-40L today.
It looks and feels really nice :D

For all of you out there, thinking about a new lens but not sure about the zoom, do what did. I checked quite a lot of my photos to see in what focal length they were taken. To me 18mm is very important but the 40-70 gap is not so much, so I prefered the 17-40 and not the 17-55 or 24-105L.

I didn't have the chance to play with it yet, hopefully during the weekend.

Thanks for the help.
Liron

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