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Author Topic: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?  (Read 4484 times)

Gatormanred

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17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« on: October 09, 2012, 08:19:31 AM »
Some advice please....I have a 5dc and mainly use a 24 - 70 Mk1 but I am in need of something wider for internal shots of houses etc and was thinking of the 17-40L. Is this my best bet on my budget of approx €600 or is it worth looking  the Samyang 14mm or any others?

Cheers!

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17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« on: October 09, 2012, 08:19:31 AM »

KyleSTL

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2012, 11:17:37 AM »
For architecture I think a zoom in necessary.  My father is an architect and for a lot of shots you don't necessarily want to be a the widest FL.  14mm might be useful sometimes, but you might find that it is too wide in a lot of instances.  For architectural photography, I am of the opinion that you use the longest possible lens (most often ≤28mm) to show everything you want within the composition and give you a 'feel' of being inside the space.  Using 14mm all the time will result in all shots having the same ultra-wide perspective distortion.
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pierceography

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2012, 11:22:25 AM »
Something else to consider that might be slightly more expensive, but still within your budget is the Sigma 12-24mm.  I've used the Sigma for architectural shooting and urban exploring, and find it's ridiculously wide yet still keeps lines straight.  The 17-40mm is wide, but also suffers from more barrel distortion than the 12-24mm will.

The Sigma is pretty soft away from the center at 12mm, but that's easily fixed by stopping down your aperture to f/8 and lower -- which you typically want to do for architectural shooting anyway.

Hope this helps.
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K-amps

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2012, 11:53:05 AM »
Something else to consider that might be slightly more expensive, but still within your budget is the Sigma 12-24mm.  I've used the Sigma for architectural shooting and urban exploring, and find it's ridiculously wide yet still keeps lines straight.  The 17-40mm is wide, but also suffers from more barrel distortion than the 12-24mm will.

The Sigma is pretty soft away from the center at 12mm, but that's easily fixed by stopping down your aperture to f/8 and lower -- which you typically want to do for architectural shooting anyway.

Hope this helps.

On that note: Lets specify it is the version 1 of the 12-24, not the sharper but more distortion prone Mk. ii  :)
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pierceography

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2012, 12:05:31 PM »
Something else to consider that might be slightly more expensive, but still within your budget is the Sigma 12-24mm.  I've used the Sigma for architectural shooting and urban exploring, and find it's ridiculously wide yet still keeps lines straight.  The 17-40mm is wide, but also suffers from more barrel distortion than the 12-24mm will.

The Sigma is pretty soft away from the center at 12mm, but that's easily fixed by stopping down your aperture to f/8 and lower -- which you typically want to do for architectural shooting anyway.

Hope this helps.

On that note: Lets specify it is the version 1 of the 12-24, not the sharper but more distortion prone Mk. ii  :)

I have version 2 of the lens.  I've honestly never noticed enough distortion to bother applying correction in post.  I've read reviews of some pretty bad distortion, but haven't noticed much if any when using my copy at 12mm.
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well_dunno

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2012, 02:40:50 PM »
I would check photozone for the distortion characteristics. It looks like the Samyang is a good lens but with moustache style distortion that might be hard to correct and can be spoiling in architectural photography.

I do agree a zoom would be handy, but wide angle zooms come with distortions too, so some post processing would be needed either case I would say...

http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/676-sigma1224f4556iiff?start=1
http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/427-canon_1740_4_5d?start=1
http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/532-samyang14f28eosff?start=1

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mrsfotografie

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2012, 02:13:03 PM »
samyang 14mm for sure. your still shooting at 5.6 and greater. then get the tilt shift samyang

No, I wouldn't. I have this lens and it's great for artistic stuff and nature (it's amazing how much distortion the human eye can accept if it's not obvious), but put this lens up against some straight (horizontal and vertical) lines and you're in trouble. Put the lines at an angle and you can get away with it more easily.
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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2012, 02:13:03 PM »

well_dunno

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2012, 02:26:58 PM »
Ultra wide angle lenses often struggle to tame the amount of barrel distortion and this is also a major weakness of the Samyang 14mm f/2.8. It produces a whopping 5.3% barrel distortion with a mustache-style sub-frequency. For serious architecture photography this is pretty much a no-go unless you correct the problem during post-processing (which is not easy due to the rather complex distortion characteristic). However, to be fair this is mostly a non-issue for landscape photography and that's surely a primary application for such a lens.

http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/532-samyang14f28eosff?start=1

wayno

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2012, 04:23:05 PM »
I'm an architect and a photog also. I use the 17-40l mostly. The 40 end isn't bad for zooming and to be honest I rarely need much more zoom other than for details etc. I do use up to 40 quite a bit though.
Tilt shift is obviously better but that's more $$ too. If you're paid for architectural photography you should have one at least but I mainly shoot my own buildings.
As I'm tall and have a big tripod I often extend it quite high this sorting out much of the perspective correction. The rest I'll sort in post.

Policar

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2012, 02:03:32 AM »
Go tilt shift! Or at least be prepared to correct in post if not, at the cost of resolution and how precise you can get your composition. For professional work you really need the 17mm and 24mm at LEAST if you want to compete, imo.

The 17-40mm is okay...  Soft at the edges particularly at 17mm, but not unusable. Better stopped down but never great. Performance improves as zoomed in; so does distortion, which is an issue but not terrible at 17mm. Weirdly, I like the bokeh with this lens. It's not smooth, but it's not yucky either, not that you'll often get much sufficient out of focus for it to really matter.

The 14mm Samyang is an odd one. Seems plenty sharp, but the distortion is very bad. If you don't mind correcting it in post (both for mustache and barrel, which makes it feel less wide in a bad way) it's good, plus if you want to correct for converging parallels I guess that can be part of the same process. But the 14mm L is a lot less distorted, for instance, and even the 17-40mm L is way better.


Gatormanred

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2012, 02:42:50 AM »
Thanks for your comments, I bought a sigma 15-30 very cheap and will use to get practice! And will upgrade later when I master cheers!!!

KyleSTL

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2012, 05:23:29 PM »
I have read good things about the Sigma 15-30mm, and it seems to be optically one of the better third-party UWA zooms.  Enjoy your new lens, and post some examples.
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pwp

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2012, 06:52:21 PM »
Go tilt shift! Or at least be prepared to correct in post if not, at the cost of resolution and how precise you can get your composition. For professional work you really need the 17mm and 24mm at LEAST if you want to compete, imo.

The 17-40mm is okay...  Soft at the edges particularly at 17mm, but not unusable. Better stopped down but never great. Performance improves as zoomed in; so does distortion, which is an issue but not terrible at 17mm.
Some advice please....I have a 5dc and mainly use a 24 - 70 Mk1 but I am in need of something wider for internal shots of houses etc and was thinking of the 17-40L. Is this my best bet on my budget of approx €600 or is it worth looking  the Samyang 14mm or any others?

Yes a couple of TS lenses may be ideal, but the OP Gatormanred has a stated budget of approx €600. I shoot a lot of architecture, and the 17-40 on FF shot at f/11 delivers very nicely. There is always a Sigma 12-24 MkI in the bag for those very tight situations, but in reality it's rarely used. The Samyang 14mm certainly has a place in plenty of photographers bags, but as an architecture lens it would be of limited use.

To add an additional dimension to the shots I present to clients, I always have a second body & tripod set up with the 70-200 f/2.8isII to shoot shallow DOF details and whatever else catches my eye. It's interesting that these shots are often the ones clients comment first on.

-PW


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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2012, 06:52:21 PM »

Drizzt321

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2012, 07:11:33 PM »
Supposedly Samyang has a 24mm TS f/3.5 lens coming out. Not sure when, but if you can wait some it might be worth it. Not sure the cost though, so even if it's 1/2 the price of Canon's, after VAT and all it might be out of your price range.
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pwp

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2012, 07:50:08 PM »
For architectural photography, I am of the opinion that you use the longest possible lens (most often ≤28mm) to show everything you want within the composition and give you a 'feel' of being inside the space. 
+1
In my view this is the most useful comment in this thread. A frequent mistake made is the temptation to "show everything" in one shot, which may be relevant to real-estate photography, but not necessarily in general architectural work. In most usage scenarios, there is the opportunity to describe the location across a number of shots, whether that be in a magazine spread, a brochure, web etc. A good story teller doesn't deliver the whole plot on the first page. As architectural photographers, often our job is to tell a story.

An advertising shoot may be a bit different, with just one "hero" shot getting all the attention.

-PW

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Re: 17 - 40mm for Architecture?
« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2012, 07:50:08 PM »