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Author Topic: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50  (Read 6593 times)

koolman

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Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« on: January 02, 2012, 03:46:30 AM »
I use a t2i and currently use the Tammy 17-50 NON VC as my "every day" lens.

The Tammy is quite nice, as far as IQ and colors. However its not superb.

I see that 90% of my shots are in the 17-35 range, and was considering the 16-35L as an upgrade. Its on sale now for the new year.

Can anyone give me feedback on this ? Is there a big jump between these two lenses? I've read conflicting reports on the 16-35 - but the colors and overall IQ seem superior ?
Jerusalem Photographer (canon t2i, 50 1.4, Tamron 17-50 non VC, canon 60mm, canon 35mm L,Samyang 14mm MF,Voigtlander 20mm MF)

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Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« on: January 02, 2012, 03:46:30 AM »

Michael_pfh

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2012, 04:04:59 AM »
I have never tried any lens other than Canon L so I can unfortunately not compare the two lenses.

However, I can highly recommend the 16-35L II, I did take a major share of my pictures with it as it is a great walk around lense on a crop body. I would definitely buy it again...
1DX | 14 2.8L II | 16-35 2.8L II | 24 1.4L II | 24-70 2.8L II | ZE 35 2.0 | ZE 50 2.0 | 85 1.2L II | 100 2.8L IS | 135 2.0L | 70-200 2.8L IS II | 200 F2.0L IS | 300 2.8L IS II | 400 2.8L IS II | 500 4.0L IS

koolman

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2012, 04:13:18 AM »
I have never tried any lens other than Canon L so I can unfortunately not compare the two lenses.

However, I can highly recommend the 16-35L II, I did take a major share of my pictures with it as it is a great walk around lense on a crop body. I would definitely buy it again...

Whats your take on the 24L ?
Jerusalem Photographer (canon t2i, 50 1.4, Tamron 17-50 non VC, canon 60mm, canon 35mm L,Samyang 14mm MF,Voigtlander 20mm MF)

Michael_pfh

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2012, 04:28:10 AM »
It is a very unique lens I would say because of the shallow depth of field it creates which looks odd in a wide angle picture. If I would have to sell one I would sell the 24L and keep the 16-35 as it offers great flexibility.
As for the 24L my main use case is indoor shots at dinners and whenever flash is not an option. Sometimes I use it as walk around lens at night, however the 85L serves that purpose better, might be due to the half extra stop. For long exposure shots at night using a tripod the 16-35L does outperform the 24L by far.
« Last Edit: January 02, 2012, 04:46:25 AM by Michael_pfh »
1DX | 14 2.8L II | 16-35 2.8L II | 24 1.4L II | 24-70 2.8L II | ZE 35 2.0 | ZE 50 2.0 | 85 1.2L II | 100 2.8L IS | 135 2.0L | 70-200 2.8L IS II | 200 F2.0L IS | 300 2.8L IS II | 400 2.8L IS II | 500 4.0L IS

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2012, 04:57:28 AM »
I hadn't the chance to test the Tamron, but as Michael I make an intensive use of the 16-35L and I consider it one the L lenses really deserving that letter. At 16mm it has less barrel distorsion than the 24-105 at 24mm. By the way, I use it just with FF cameras. I don't know your field of application but, if a wide angle is needed and you don't plan to upgrade to an FF, I would suggest you to consider also the EF-S 10-22. I had it on my previous 50D and it was a wonderful wide angle, very close to L quality...

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2012, 06:08:39 AM »
Can't compare to the Tamron, but I do have the 16-35mm f/2.8L II and love it on FF, I prefer to use my EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS when I need a general purpose zoom on my 7D.  IQ is slightly better, and it has IS which is quite useful in some situations.

Unless you're also getting a FF camera in the very near future, I'd consider the 17-55mm.
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koolman

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2012, 08:33:01 AM »
Can't compare to the Tamron, but I do have the 16-35mm f/2.8L II and love it on FF, I prefer to use my EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS when I need a general purpose zoom on my 7D.  IQ is slightly better, and it has IS which is quite useful in some situations.

Unless you're also getting a FF camera in the very near future, I'd consider the 17-55mm.

I borrowed the 17-55 once for a short time. I found it heavy, flimsy build, and dicey AF. Maybe I was too focused on those to notice the IQ. Do you think it is superior to the 16-35 on a crop ?
Jerusalem Photographer (canon t2i, 50 1.4, Tamron 17-50 non VC, canon 60mm, canon 35mm L,Samyang 14mm MF,Voigtlander 20mm MF)

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2012, 08:33:01 AM »

elflord

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2012, 09:11:36 AM »
I use a t2i and currently use the Tammy 17-50 NON VC as my "every day" lens.

The Tammy is quite nice, as far as IQ and colors. However its not superb.

I see that 90% of my shots are in the 17-35 range, and was considering the 16-35L as an upgrade. Its on sale now for the new year.

Can anyone give me feedback on this ? Is there a big jump between these two lenses? I've read conflicting reports on the 16-35 - but the colors and overall IQ seem superior ?

The photozone review of the Tammy is glowing -- what is it that it lacks that you are hoping to find in the replacement ? Is there any specific issue, or are you looking for some intangible "wow" factor that you find in other lenses but not this one (and if so, which lenses ?)

If you're looking for something that will sweep you off your feet, I'd say look into either a wide angle prime in that range or a full frame body. But I'm just shooting from the hip here.

btw, since you mentioned colors and seem to be looking to make them pop -- are you shooting raw ? A little anecdote I have about this -- I recently shot some pictures when I had some visitors. I was showing them my camera gear -- a 5D Mark II, a Rebel XS, and a Panasonic GF2. Predictably, the cameras typically perform in descending order of sensor size, 5D > rebel > gf2, and yet on that day the images from the GF2 were vastly superior, simply because I was shooting raw with that camera and jpeg with the others.

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2012, 10:34:50 AM »
I borrowed the 17-55 once for a short time. I found it heavy, flimsy build, and dicey AF. Maybe I was too focused on those to notice the IQ. Do you think it is superior to the 16-35 on a crop ?

I do think it's better.  The 16-35mm definitely has better build quality and a nicer feel.  As for weight, the 17-55mm and the 16-35mm II weigh essentially the same, so if you found the 17-55mm heavy, the 16-35mm will be heavy, too. 

As for dicey AF, what do you mean by 'dicey'?  With fast lenses (f/2.8 and faster), systematic AF errors are more obvious - those occur when your body and your lens are not well-matched (e.g. body is toward one end of the manufacturing tolerance, lens is toward the other).  Your Tamron may be a good match, the 17-55mm you tried may not have been.  AF Mircoadjustment is a feature that allows you to calibrate your lenses to your camera(s), and that was one of the main reasons I upgraded to the 7D.  So, for example, my 17-55mm on the 7D is at +1 (scale is -20 to +20) - that small an adjustment, you'd likely not even notice a problem.  But my 16-35L requires a +9 adjustment on the 7D; one unit is 1/8 of the depth of focus, so an adjustment of 9 units means what you focus on may well end up outside the DoF, especially with a close subject at the long end of the zoom.  So...since your T2i lacka the AF microadjustment feature, I'd recommend that whatever lens you buy, you get it from a dealer where you can easily exchange it for another copy, or from a brick-and-mortar store where you can test the specific lens on your camera.
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Mendolera

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2012, 11:09:41 AM »
I had the Tamron for awhile and liked the IQ for the price.

I returned it after I got back from Australia however because I was getting a lot of ER99 issues and hadnt had that with any of my canon lens and to this day was the only lens that ever gave me that issue.

The 16-35L is probably my next lens
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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2012, 12:40:53 PM »
I have the tamron 17-50 f/2.8 non-VC and I think it's one of the best standard zoom lenses you can get for APS-C

so much so that I think it doesn't make any sense to "upgrade" to canon L options, be it 17-40 or 16-35: depending on the settings, the image will range from very slightly better to actually worse, and price is a lot higher

the only upgrade I would consider is to the 17-55 f/2.8 IS, in case you need the sharpest standard zoom for APS-C and IS too, and are ready to pay for it; I haven't gone that route because again the difference is not huge, the price is steep and I don't need IS that much - and I wouldn't want to spend so much on a lens that won't work on fullframe, to use it on a camera that has no microadjustment

koolman

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2012, 04:04:16 AM »
I borrowed the 17-55 once for a short time. I found it heavy, flimsy build, and dicey AF. Maybe I was too focused on those to notice the IQ. Do you think it is superior to the 16-35 on a crop ?

I do think it's better.  The 16-35mm definitely has better build quality and a nicer feel.  As for weight, the 17-55mm and the 16-35mm II weigh essentially the same, so if you found the 17-55mm heavy, the 16-35mm will be heavy, too. 

As for dicey AF, what do you mean by 'dicey'?  With fast lenses (f/2.8 and faster), systematic AF errors are more obvious - those occur when your body and your lens are not well-matched (e.g. body is toward one end of the manufacturing tolerance, lens is toward the other).  Your Tamron may be a good match, the 17-55mm you tried may not have been.  AF Mircoadjustment is a feature that allows you to calibrate your lenses to your camera(s), and that was one of the main reasons I upgraded to the 7D.  So, for example, my 17-55mm on the 7D is at +1 (scale is -20 to +20) - that small an adjustment, you'd likely not even notice a problem.  But my 16-35L requires a +9 adjustment on the 7D; one unit is 1/8 of the depth of focus, so an adjustment of 9 units means what you focus on may well end up outside the DoF, especially with a close subject at the long end of the zoom.  So...since your T2i lacka the AF microadjustment feature, I'd recommend that whatever lens you buy, you get it from a dealer where you can easily exchange it for another copy, or from a brick-and-mortar store where you can test the specific lens on your camera.

Thanks for the explanation - which like always is detailed and comprehensive. I found the 7d heavy as a walk around body and like the smaller rebel  - so I have to forfeit MF for now. I did take your advice and I bring the body along every time I try a new lens.
Jerusalem Photographer (canon t2i, 50 1.4, Tamron 17-50 non VC, canon 60mm, canon 35mm L,Samyang 14mm MF,Voigtlander 20mm MF)

koolman

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2012, 04:07:07 AM »
I have the tamron 17-50 f/2.8 non-VC and I think it's one of the best standard zoom lenses you can get for APS-C

so much so that I think it doesn't make any sense to "upgrade" to canon L options, be it 17-40 or 16-35: depending on the settings, the image will range from very slightly better to actually worse, and price is a lot higher

the only upgrade I would consider is to the 17-55 f/2.8 IS, in case you need the sharpest standard zoom for APS-C and IS too, and are ready to pay for it; I haven't gone that route because again the difference is not huge, the price is steep and I don't need IS that much - and I wouldn't want to spend so much on a lens that won't work on fullframe, to use it on a camera that has no microadjustment

Thanks for the feedback. I actually find the Tammy slightly SHARPER then the 17-55, its lighter, cheaper, and more modern build to my taste. Alas, I understand from all the replies that for me to "upgrade" in a significant way - I need to consider FF or expensive wide primes. The zeiss 21mm 2.8 seems to be a gem - for a fortune!
Jerusalem Photographer (canon t2i, 50 1.4, Tamron 17-50 non VC, canon 60mm, canon 35mm L,Samyang 14mm MF,Voigtlander 20mm MF)

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2012, 04:07:07 AM »

Axilrod

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #13 on: January 05, 2012, 03:36:44 PM »
I have never tried any lens other than Canon L so I can unfortunately not compare the two lenses.

However, I can highly recommend the 16-35L II, I did take a major share of my pictures with it as it is a great walk around lense on a crop body. I would definitely buy it again...

Whats your take on the 24L ?

24L is awesome, most likely going to be my next acquisition.  However, I remember the first time I put the 16-35 on my old T2i, and its a really great range on that lens.  The bokeh is beautifully circular and looks even better on an APS-C sensor.  The 24L is great, but in terms of versatility I think you would be more happy with the 16-35mm.

But I wouldn't rule out the 17-55 f/2.8 IS, it's even more versatile and DAMN sharp.  I love that lens, best non-L zoom I've ever used, and it was sharper than both of the 24-70s that I had. 
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Axilrod

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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2012, 03:40:14 PM »
I have the tamron 17-50 f/2.8 non-VC and I think it's one of the best standard zoom lenses you can get for APS-C

so much so that I think it doesn't make any sense to "upgrade" to canon L options, be it 17-40 or 16-35: depending on the settings, the image will range from very slightly better to actually worse, and price is a lot higher

the only upgrade I would consider is to the 17-55 f/2.8 IS, in case you need the sharpest standard zoom for APS-C and IS too, and are ready to pay for it; I haven't gone that route because again the difference is not huge, the price is steep and I don't need IS that much - and I wouldn't want to spend so much on a lens that won't work on fullframe, to use it on a camera that has no microadjustment

Thanks for the feedback. I actually find the Tammy slightly SHARPER then the 17-55, its lighter, cheaper, and more modern build to my taste. Alas, I understand from all the replies that for me to "upgrade" in a significant way - I need to consider FF or expensive wide primes. The zeiss 21mm 2.8 seems to be a gem - for a fortune!

Oh I didn't see that the 17-55 had already been mentioned.  I played with the Tamron 17-50 and don't recall being super impressed by any aspect of it, although I felt it was a great lens for the price.  Now the 17-55, I remember seeing the first images I took on my computer and being like "holy sh** which lens was that?"  You may want to play with another copy before you rule that one out.
The Zeiss 21mm is a gorgeous lens.....The only reason I haven't gotten the 24L is because I can't make a decision between the two : )
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Re: Canon 16-35 vs Tamron 17-50
« Reply #14 on: January 05, 2012, 03:40:14 PM »