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Thread: which lens is best?

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    Member tassieshutterbug's Avatar
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    which lens is best?

    i, I'm looking at buying a new WA lens for my Canon 550D and was wondering if anyone has a preference and why between the Canon EF 16-35mm or the Sigma 17-50mm, I know Canon makes a good lens but have heard good reports on the Sigma range. Cheers

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    16-35 and 17-50 is not really that wide. I would look at the Sigma 10-20 if you want a good widey.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    Just saw some images with a 16-35mm f2.8 - They are pretty wide and as clear as a bell!

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    I just bought the Canon 10-22 from kogan for $689
    Steve

    Canon G12, Canon 7D, Canon 10-22USM, Canon 50mm 1.8, Canon 24-105L​, Canon 100mm Macro USM

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    Hi Tassieshutterbug.

    As Rick says, neither of these lenses is a wide-angle unit on a 550D. They are completely different products with vastly different purposes.

    The Sigma 17-50 is a fast normal zoom for general-purpose use on crop cameras only. It does not work on FX (full frame) cameras, only on crop cameras like your 550D. It is a normal zoom - i.e., neither wide angle nor telephoto. In general, your normal zoom is your most-used lens, doing maybe 50% of your total work, with specialist lenses (wide-angle, telephoto, fisheye, macro, and so on) each being used a fairly small amount of the time. (Actual usage will vary from one photographer to another, of course, but most people use their normal zoom as much or more tan any other lens.)

    There are many other normal zooms you might consider alongside the Sigma 17-50. These include the superb but very expensive Canon EF-S 17-55/2.8 IS, the quite expensive Tokina 16-50/2.8, the cheap Tamron 17-50, and the Sigma 17-70/2.8-4. Not as fast as these but offering greater focal length range is the excellent Canon 15-85/3.5-5.6 IS (which is starting to get quite wide) and a large number of cheaper lenses of somewhat lower quality.

    The Canon 16-35 is a completely different animal. It is a wide-angle lens but only if you use it on the FX bodies it was designed for. On something like a 5D, the 16-35 is an ultra-wide equivalent to a 10-22mm lens on your 550D. But on a crop camera like the 550D ... well, what would be the point? You'd have a very expensive, very heavy, very short general-purpose lens, probably no sharper than made-for-purpose lenses half its price and certainly no sharper than the best-of-breed DX lenses like the 17-55/2.8 IS. Worse, it only goes to 35mm, which is very short for a general-purpose lens, unusably short in my view. Oh, and no image stablisation either.

    Don't get me wrong, the 16-35 is an excellent lens and I'll quite likely buy one myself for my 5D II one day, but on your 550D it would be like buying very good quality swimming flippers to wear on bike rides.

    Of these two, the 17-50 is by far the better choice, but there are many others to consider also. What are your needs? What do you have now? What do you want to do that you can't do already with your existing lenses? The answers to these questions will help determine the best answer to your needs.
    Tony

    Edit and critique at will. Tokina 10-17 fish, Canon 10-22, 24-105, 100-400, TS-E 24, 35/1.4, 60 macro, 100L macro, 500/4, Wimberley, MT-24EX, 580EX-II, 1D IV, 7D, 5D II, 50D.

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    Oh, good grief Tanin, you have confused the hell out of me now. I have a standard 55-250mm lens and really want a good WIDE lens. You've convinced me that neither of my choices are good ones, what would you reccommend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tassieshutterbug View Post
    I'm looking at buying a new WA lens for my Canon 550D
    The lenses you are considering will cover the wide angle to standard range on your 550D.
    I could be wrong, but most responses to your post have taken your request about information regarding a (in your words) WA lens to mean that you are actually looking to buy an UWA lens (10-22 range).
    Could you please clarify whether you are looking for a WA (as you stated), or an UWA which is what people are suggesting.
    Mark

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    Yes, unistudent an UWA was what I was meant. Really pays if I read my posts nefore I post them

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    TS, I don't reckon you really want an ultra-wide, not if your only lens is a 55-250. Anything will seem very wide to you, as the 55-250 starts as a moderate telephoto (55mm is mild telephoto on a 550D) and gets lots longer from there. I reckon you need a standard zoom. A standard zoom will be much wider than your 55-250, and open up a whole new world to your camera and your imagination. Something like an 18-55 or a 15-85 or a 17-70 or a 16-50 - lots of choices there but they all will serve your basic need which is to be able to take a much wider range of pictures than you can at the moment.

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    From memory the Tokina 11-16mm is one of the highest rated UWA lenses for crop bodies. Only downside is the weight I believe, compared to the Canon and Sigma offerings in the same reach.

    Have personally found the Canon 15-85 sufficient for landscapes, and it is an absolute cracker of a lens affordable to boot too! Will pair along nicely with your 55-250.
    Bodies: Panasonic Lumix GF-1, G-1 & Canon 7D
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    Also you don't say what your main intended use would be shutterbug. This can also have a bearing on what would be best suited. For example if you want it primarily as a walkaround and landscape lens, the recommendation would be different from what you would get if you said you wanted to do portraiture or people shots where low light comes into play.

    As far as a general purpose and landscape the Canon 15-85 that Paiyan mentions above would be a terrific lens. On my 50D it was probably my most used lens, handling at least 50% of duties. If you said you wanted something slightly better in low light and to shoot people, then the Canon 17-55 F2.8 that Tony mentions would be a better option.

    Also another point to keep in mind, what is your long term plan. The reason I ask this is I have found genuine Canon lenses are usually easier to sell than 3rd party ones. If you decided to go full frame in a year or so selling say the Canon 17-55 F2.8 you would get most of your money back and the sale would be a quick one. They seem to hold their value more. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with 3rd part lenses, some are excellent and represent very good value when comparing them to Canon L glass. Good luck with your decision and remember to just enjoy whatever you buy.
    Lloyd
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    I vote for the Tokina 11-16 F2.8
    Fast, great colours and contrast, and oh so sharp!
    All my photos are taken with recycled pixels.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LJG View Post
    As far as a general purpose and landscape the Canon 15-85 that Paiyan mentions above would be a terrific lens.
    Excellent advice.
    I've found this lens to be so good and 15mm to be wide enough, that I haven't been able to justify buying a 10-22.

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    The Canon 10-22 is a stunning lens for the money. "L" quality glass in a slightly cheaper body. I had one briefly before upgrading to full frame and I was really hesitant to see it go. Possibly one of the best pieces of glass I have used.

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    HMM- - -

    I am wondering if the OP actually meant in their first post, that s/he wanted a (better / upgrade) lens to replace the EF-S 18 to 55F/3.5~5.6 IS (kit lens)?

    WW

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    Not sure - but the request was for a wide angle, so wider the better . The Canon 10-22 is a real stunner for landscapes, but it really depends on how wide the OP wants to go. My 17-40 would not be terribly wide angle on a crop sensor like the 550D, but is very useful on my 5D. Some of the wide angle lenses will not accept filters on the front, which for me is a real issue. Most of my wide angle shots have employed a filter, so I would be turned off by something that you cannot put a filter on (the Canon does accept filters). If for nothing other than protecting the front element, filters are a good idea (I know some may disagree, before that arguments starts ).

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    Quote Originally Posted by roastman View Post
    If for nothing other than protecting the front element, filters are a good idea (I know some may disagree, before that arguments starts ).
    Let the flame wars begin

    I'm currently saving up for the Canon 10-22 for my 450D but I'm seriously considering the Sigma lineup. They've got a 10-22 in a f3.5 and f4-5.6. The 8-16 sounds REAALY wide. I've already got a Sigma prime and am really happy with it.

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    Hi evryone, thank you all for your opinions, I have taken them all onboard and done some research and feel that the Sigma 10-20mm f3.5, is probably the most suitable for what I'm looking for and just wins over slightly in the price range too. Hopefully you'll see the results of the new lens up here soon. Cheers

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    Hope you enjoy it when you have it in your hands.... It's hard not to enjoy a new lens!

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    I've got the Canon 10-22mm and its a brilliant piece of gear. Have not been able to fault it so far. Pretty sure it was under 700 delivered when I bought it close to 18 months ago

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