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Author Topic: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?  (Read 7827 times)

kadadj

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I'm buying a 7D soon, and I'm trying to figure out what lenses I should buy. How good are really the third party lenses? I'm looking at wide angles, and some of  the prices of the sigmas seem to good to be true. Should I go with a canon lens, which costs much more, or should I buy a third party lens?
Also, what wide angles do you guys recommend? I have never had one, so I have no idea what I should choose. I will be using it as a cool portrait lens, and for landscapes.
I want an extreme wide angle around 10mm, but as I said, I'm really clueless as to which one I should buy.

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mjp

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2012, 08:29:19 PM »
I own the Tokina 11-16mm f2.8 and have enjoyed it thus far, and use it often on my 7D. I have had no issues with either the quality of photos taken with it or the build which is strong and sturdy. The f2.8 can sometimes come in handy in low light and I really like manual focusing this lens (the auto focus works great, too). That said, I am sure you would be happy with the Canon or Sigma as well. I have not used them, but have read good reviews.

crasher7

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2012, 10:39:04 PM »
I have the 10-22 and I think on the 7D you can't get a better combo for an UWA lens. However I am searching for the right wide prime which I can also use on my Elan 7. I have owned the 35 f/2 before and while awesome on the film body it was always seeking on my digi. Plus the 56 (1.6x) FL wasn't doing me anything I didn't already have with a higher quality faster lens. I'm thinking I should look for a deal on a 28 1.8 because I'm done with the non USM Canon's and even though the Sigma 30 1.4 is raved about I want it on film as well. I think the EF 28 1.8 is the way to go. 44.8 FL is sweet for Street and indoors.

Joellll

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2012, 10:43:41 AM »
Tokina 11-16mm user here!

It's a great lens with great quality (or maybe just a great copy), the fact that it has a low maximum magnification limits the creativity value of this lens, but the constant f/2.8 is not rivalled by Sigma or Canon.

In case you're going to shoot videos too, the Tokina is parfocal, unlike  other alternatives.

Question though, I am going full frame soon. Can someone share their experiences of 3rd party crop UWA on FF?

rocketdesigner

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2012, 11:19:08 AM »
I agree the Tok/11-16 is a great choice for the 7D ... just don't expect to use it on a FF sensor camera. :-\

unfocused

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2012, 11:22:22 AM »
I am also a Tokina 11-16 owner and recommend it. But, from almost every review or comment I've seen, this is a case where you can't go wrong with any of the three popular choices: Tokina, Canon or Sigma.

As far as third-party lenses in general, I would say that you need to research the individual lenses. Some are excellent, some not so much. In the old days, you could pretty much be assured that if Canon or Nikon put their name on a lens it would be great. Unfortunately, that's no longer the case. Both have made low-end lenses that are less than great. (Although some of the low-cost lenses are pretty amazing values, such as the EF-S 55-250mm which is incredibly sharp, although not the sturdiest build).

With other third party lenses, I'd suggest you do the same as you are doing with the wide-angle, pick the focal length you are interested in and then read reviews to find the best value.
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jwong

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2012, 12:24:48 PM »
I have the Canon 10-22, and I like it a lot.  It came out before most (all?) of the 3rd party lenses, and it still holds its own IQ-wise.  10 to 22mm is a nice range and overlaps the 17-55, which I like a lot because it minimizes lens swaps.  It's equivalent to 16-35mm on FF whereas the Tokina 11-16 goes from 18-26mm.  The Canon is a little slower than the Tokina but the difference in speed is not that significant.  UWAs are easy to handhold, and subject motion blur is more of an issue at these focal lengths.  DOFs tend to be large, so good subject/background isolation with UWAs is difficult even at f/2.8.  The Canon max magnification is almost twice that of the Tokina (0.17x vs. 0.09x), which helps in emphasizing a foreground object against the background.

Ultimately, you really can't go wrong with any of the choices.  The Tokina is the fastest while giving the narrowest focal length range;  Sigmas go even wider, but are slower; and Canon falls somewhere in the middle.

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2012, 12:24:48 PM »

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2012, 12:32:43 PM »
The issue I have with third party lenses is that they have reverse engineered the Canon autofocus and aperture firmware in the lens, and there is no guarantee that your lens will work with the next new Canon DSLR.

This was brought home to me, when four Sigma Autofocus and EOS lenses wouuld not work on my Canon DSLR.  Sigma charged me $100 to fix my 105mm Macro, but they did not have upgrades for the other three.  The lenses could not be used manually either, because there was no aperture control.  So, a lot of money was tossed out and taught me what can happen.

Tokina does seem to make high quality wide lenses, I prefer Tokina to the other third party brands, but they also have had lenses that won't AF on Canon DSLR's.

Beware of older Sigma lenses, many are Canon EOS compatible but do not work on Canon DSLR's and cannot be upgraded.

AJ

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2012, 12:41:17 PM »
I own a Sigma 10-20/4-5.6 and I'm quite happy with it.  It's a sharp lens with no real weaknesses, except perhaps for the fact that it's slow.  Usually the narrow aperture is not a problem because I'm shooting landscapes stopped down, but there are times where an extra stop or two would come in handy.  Flare is okay, distortions are not bad, c/a are manageable, colors are good, AF is competent, build is very good.

At the time when I bought it, the Sigma was much cheaper than the Canon.  Now the price gap has narrowed, and faced with the same decision I might pop for the Canon.  But I'm not switching - I've got a good lens that's serving me well.

iaind

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2012, 12:49:49 PM »
Best bet is to stick with Canon for future compatability. As the man says you pay your money and take your choice. Found no problems with either 10-22 EFs or 17-35L
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crasher7

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2012, 01:19:19 PM »
If I'm using my UWA in a low light situation then it's a tripod situation. Personally having a Canon 10-22 at 2.8 would not be more appealing than how it actually is. I just can't see getting a 6mm range lens. Coming from a Sigma 10-20 to the Canon was a huge leap in IQ. So after using two of three of the main crop UWA's I think if you aren't willing to save a bit more and get the Canon you drip a lot of  justifying tears in your cup of buyers remorse.

jcollett

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2012, 01:26:43 PM »
If you do go FF, a consideration should be put to the Tamron AF 17-35MM F/2.8-4 Di LD Aspherical (IF).  It is discontinued, so you would need to find one on eBay or Craigslist.  I found one for $200 and has performed well for me.

ew20

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2012, 03:03:08 PM »
You'll get what you pay for with wide angle.  Sigmas/Tokinas will be Good, the 10-22 and 17-40 a bit better, and the higher end Canon primes and Zeiss a noticeable step above those. 

FF is preferable for wide angle, but more expensive glass is needed as weaker lenses will be exposed around the edges.  If you are set on crop and want UWA, the Canon 10-22 will be your best option.  But if you are thinking 3rd party and find something you like, don't worry about AF all that much.  Manual focus is preferable and easy to use at very wide angles.

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2012, 03:03:08 PM »

AJ

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2012, 03:20:35 PM »
There are good comparative reviews of all these crop ultrawides at the-digital-picture.

About Tokina  11-16.  Tokina just announced a version 2 of this lens which is supposed to have improved coatings and a better focus motor.  It might be worth waiting for if you're interested in this lens.  On the other hand they may jack up the price.


scotthillphoto

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2012, 03:47:43 PM »
Personally I have the sigma 10-20 3.5 the only reason I went with that instead of the canon version was for the 3.5 all the way through. It is a little cheaper and at 10mm you can see some image flare, but at 10mm I want some of it. I also own the sigma 30 1.4 with is a great lens and those are the only two non-canon lenses I own and will probably be it for me... Since the new 5D FINALLY came out.... Sigma is a good overall brand just do extensive test's when you first get the lenses to verify you have a good copy.
Bodies: Canon 7D and 5D Markiii - Lenses: 70-200 2.8L, 50 1.2L, 30 1.4, and 10-20 3.5 - Then flashes, strobes, stands, etc....

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Re: Buying third party lenses, and which wide angle do you recommend?
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2012, 03:47:43 PM »