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Author Topic: 15-85 vs 17-40  (Read 10758 times)

LFG530

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15-85 vs 17-40
« on: May 13, 2011, 10:42:07 PM »
I've been thinking for a while about selling my 15-85 since I'm not satisfied with the quality (good at 15 sucks at 85) and the colors that are "weird" (tough to describe) and because , anyways I was wondering if the 17-40 would be an upgrade IQ wise. I was also considering the 16-28 tokina for the 2.8 if anyone has experience with that lens.

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15-85 vs 17-40
« on: May 13, 2011, 10:42:07 PM »

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2011, 11:43:34 PM »
What camera are you going to be pairing this lens to?  I had the 30D>50D>7D and had the 17-40 through that range... The 17-40 is far better on the 7D IMHO and is razor sharp in most situations.  I read that the tamron 17-50 had great reviews and was in some instances just as good optically and a hair cheaper however the construction was suspect and not as rugged as the 17-40.  I didn't try out the 16-28 tokina however I did try the 16-50 2.8 tokina which is their "pro" series camera... I also tried out the sigma 17-50 as well... Sigma was better than the tokina however even the sigma left me wanting more... Overall okay however you had to stop down to F4 to get an acceptably sharp image... tokina, at least the samples I tested just wasn't good with the focus.  Tokina was my initial pick going into the testing and I really wanted to like it because of the construction and clutch AF/MF however I just couldn't accept the focus.  My local camera store didn't sell tamrons for me to try out so I couldn't get an absolute side by side comparison.  In the end I went with the 17-40 and haven't been disappointed since.  I thought I had a slightly soft copy when paired with my 50D and didn't have it long enough with my 30D to really tell.  Once i moved to the 7D, the lens is razor sharp and i'm very happy with my purchase. 
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

KBX500

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2011, 12:04:43 AM »
It's difficult to really help you without more info.

What is your budget for a lens ?
What other lenses do you have ?
What kind of shots are you most interested in creating ?
Will you keep the 15-85 for the small end of the zoom range ?
How are you going to replace the big end of the zoom range ?
Do you have definite plans to buy a full-frame body very soon ?

A constant aperture lens is nice to have. The 17-40 f/4 L will be a big upgrade in that regard.
But you're losing half of your zoom range going from the 15-85 to the 17-40. The 17-40 may be
an upgrade in terms of IQ, but it is not a perfect lens either. However, colors were fine.
I found that it was too short, the f/4 was too limiting and it did not have IS.

I am much happier with the EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS. For my usage, it is much better than the 17-40,
on a crop body.

I've never used the Tokina 16-28 - I actually had never heard of it. As I see it, the focal range
is designed to be a wide zoom for full-frame cameras. As the Tokina 11-16, Canon EF-S 10-22,
etc. are for crop bodies.



awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2011, 12:14:11 AM »
I did a quick search on your lens in question... it seems to be held in high regard to those who like the tokina brand... with the curved front element, you may have a harder time to use filters, however I dont know for sure since I haven't played with it.  I played with the 17-55 through CPS and it's a fine lens in it's own regard.  Some say its better than the 17-40 optically while others say not... it's a personal thing.  I do wish my 17-40 had IS and a longer zoom range however I make due with what I have.  It may not be the perfect walk around everyday lens however for my needs, it works.  Also the 17-40 has an L construction whereas the 17-55 is probably a hair better construction than your 15-85, if you're rough with your gear.  Go to a camera shop that sells it and try them all out and get the sharpest lens you can afford.  That's my advise. 
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

LFG530

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2011, 02:49:33 AM »
My question isn't about the practical aspect because I know what I want and I'll be satisfied with the 17-40 range since I have other lenses to cover the telephoto aspect and yes I plan on switching to full frame (from a 7d) with the 5d III just like half of the forum from what I've seen :P. I'd just like to know if in the same range the 17-40 will outperform the 15-85 in terms of sharpness and color rendition, I'd really like to find the opinion of someone who has made the switch.

MintMark

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2011, 03:09:11 AM »
For sharpness you can look at the graphs on photozone... they have results for both lenses on a 50D. They look very similar in performance to me. I don't know about colour rendition... it's more subjective.

I know I'm happy with my 15-85 (even at 85!), but I'm not planning a move to full frame. I'm sorry I've never tried a 17-40.

How about renting one? It won't cost much and you can compare side by side...


LuCoOc

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2011, 03:23:01 AM »
check out the comparison-tools at TDP http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Comparison-Tools.aspx but be aware, studio tests won't tell you the whole story.
 i think most of us know them but also read his reviews. they're great :D
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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2011, 03:23:01 AM »

akiskev

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2011, 10:20:11 AM »
I've been thinking for a while about selling my 15-85 since I'm not satisfied with the quality (good at 15 sucks at 85) and the colors that are "weird" (tough to describe) and because , anyways I was wondering if the 17-40 would be an upgrade IQ wise. I was also considering the 16-28 tokina for the 2.8 if anyone has experience with that lens.
Can you post some sucky images at 85mm? I have the 17-40 and I was thinking to get the 15-85 because it is a more versatile all-around lens. I'm not planning to sell my 17-40 though, because I use it on 3 cameras(2 ff, 1 aps-c). 17-40 is very good if you can live with the lack of IS.
What I love about 17-40? Its build quality, size-weight, color rendition and the lack of flaring! I find its IQ well above average, especially at f8-11.
Flickr | Canon EOS 3 | Canon EOS Digital Rebel XTi
EF 17-40mm f/4L | EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS | EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS | EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L
Zeiss 35mm f/2.4 | Zeiss 50mm f/1.4 | Zeiss 85mm f/1.4 | Zeiss 200mm f/2.8 | Zeiss 80-200 f/4

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2011, 10:50:03 AM »
If you want to know about pyre sharpness of a lens go to canons website, pull up the lenses qnd look at the mtf charts. The 17-40 generally will have the edge over 15-85 overall in sharpness.
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2011, 10:55:09 AM »
Also, the 17-40 is always brought up in conversations of the best wide angles of canon. How often is the 15-85 brought up?  Just saying.
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

Flake

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2011, 11:14:19 AM »
Also, the 17-40 is always brought up in conversations of the best wide angles of canon. How often is the 15-85 brought up?  Just saying.

Dunno which forums you've been on !  I certainly don't regard it as being one of Canons best wide angles, certainly not on FF, in fact I'd go so far as to say it's one of the worst, and I own one!

It's an absolute dog wide open, imagine a lens with no measurable resolution in the corners ! 3.6% barrel distortion at the wide end!  I don't know just how bad a lens has to get for you, but this certainly isn't good.

Canon are often criticised for their wide angle lenses and even their expensive L primes are not as good as they should be especially considering the price they charge, so it's looking for the best of a bad bunch!
The deal is worse with a crop frame, because there are so many good EF-s lenses available, and many of them have IS.  The 17 - 55mm f/2.8 has been mentioned, but consider the Sigma 17-50mm f/2.8 OS which is a bit cheaper and is a good performer, or the 17 - 70mm OS which is a great budget choice.

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2011, 11:24:47 AM »
I have tested sigma and is no where near the lens the 17-40 is. Review sites from photozone to dpr and even the famous nikon apologist even praises this lens saying it's better than the 16-35 first generation to as good as the second generation. Not saying your wrong with your lenses but it is a very good lens.
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2011, 11:33:04 AM »
Nikon apologist: Ken Rockwell loved this lens in his review, don't forget the digital picture review as well as others. Yes, is there room for improvement and no, this isn't the best wide angle in the world but in comparison to current offerings, it's at least in the discussion.
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2011, 11:33:04 AM »

Rob

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2011, 11:57:10 AM »
I have a 17-40 and its very soft on my 30D especially at the wide end, so much so that I would say that its unusable on my 30D, but on my 5D its fantastic razer sharp at all focal lenths. Must be that thing where its the luck of the draw if your Camera and lens are a good match together? :P
Better to live in denial, that way you wont be disappointed!

Canon 5D3 | 5D2 | 5Dc | 24-70 f2.8L | 24-105L | 17-40L | 85f1.8 | 70-200 f2.8L IS | Sigma 12-24 | 580EXx2

awinphoto

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2011, 12:14:10 PM »
Perhaps yours is one of those issues brought up in the "my lens is soft" article on canonrumors regarding the 30d. My 17-40 wasnt as sharp on my 50d as it is on the 7d. Given this, I would have to say it's a camera issue and not a Lens issue. Dont know if it's worth it to you to send the 30d and lens to be calibrated together. If one ldns is sharp one one camera than another, I would have to say that reflects on the camera, not the lens
Canon 5d III, Canon 24-105L, Canon 17-40L, Canon 70-200 F4L, Canon 100L 2.8, 430EX 2's and a lot of bumps along the road to get to where I am.

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Re: 15-85 vs 17-40
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2011, 12:14:10 PM »