Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 IS Q's

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by cfusionpm, Sep 7, 2009.

  1. cfusionpm

    cfusionpm TPF Noob!

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    Anyone with experience using this EF-S lens? I don't hear much discussion about it here, and I can't seem to find a shop around me that has one in stock to play with. I'm weary about spending that much money on a lens online without trying it first. How is the feel and build quality compared to L lenses? What about optical quality compared to similarly priced L lenses? It has the advantage of lighter weight, IS, and a more crop-friendly zoom range than the 24-70, but doesn't seem to have metal construction or weather sealing. I guess what I'm looking for is whether or not it's worth dropping that kind of money on.
     
  2. NateWagner

    NateWagner TPF Noob!

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    Everything I've heard about it is that it's basically L quality in an EF-S lens. It is supposed to be the best 17-55 lens out there. On another forum I'm on (Dgrin) many of the people photographers have it and swear by it religiously.

    It like most high quality lenses keeps its value pretty well, so if you get it second hand, and decide you don't like it or if you move to full frame you would be able to sell it and not lose much at all.
     
  3. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    I own it and it rocks. I use it for wedding work. It's a very good lens at very near the quality of my L series lenses.
     
  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Take a good,hard,close look at the 17-55 f/2.8 IS-USM lens on the dPreview first-look pages.

    Canon EOS 7D Hands-on Preview: 14. Samples: Digital Photography Review

    Pay special note to the cityscape photos done with the 17-55, like image 2480,2485,2489,and 2490; if you plan on migrating this lens forward to the new 7D, I think you might be disappointed in the performance of this lens. HOnestly, it does not have very good looking image quality on the 7D's high-MP sensor,especially at the wider end of its reach. The images look almost like they have some type of video-y look, as if they were shot through really thick plexiglass like the kind used in huge aquariums. At full-size, the 17-55 f/2.8 IS-USM's wider angle images at f/8 are just not that good-looking.

    I'm sure the lens is good on lower-MP count sensors, but the 7D's extreme pixel density would equate to a 46-MP Full-Frame camera, and so the demands on lenses,especially wide zooms, are extremely high on something like an 18MP 1.6x APS-C sensor.

    We will soon be moving into an era when even consumer-priced, high-MP crop bodies are going to reveal lens weaknesses we currently can not see on 8.2 and 10.3 MP Canon bodies that a lot of us are shooting. I think the 7D's image quality looks amazing using the high-end L-glass telephotos that Robgalbraith shot it with, and also with the 70-200 f/4-L dPreview used. Examine carefully the resolution and acutance and freedom from chromatic aberration on the dPreview full-size samples shot with the 70-200f/4 L, and compare those photos with the ones made with the 17-55 f/2.8 IS-USM. There is a very notable difference in the level of optical quality between the actual L-glass lens and the 17-55 f/2.8 IS-USM.

    I want to make it perfectly clear that I am *not* trying to bash the 17-55, but with the next generation camera, the 7D, I can see some weaknesses in the way the 17-55 renders images; that sensor seems to be capable of out-resolving the 17-55 lens. The images from the 17-55 look smooth, but low in acutance. The wide zoom's images have very little "bite", but the 70-200 and the 85/1.2 L and the 200 f/2-L have terrific "bite". Considering the somewhat steep cost of the 17-55 IS-USM and the way MP counts are going up and up, I wonder if maybe the 17-40 f/4 L might not be the better choice for people who are going to be buying the 7D, or other future-generation Canon bodies.

    Again, not trying to knock the 17-55 f/2.8, but I am wondering how the new Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 with VC (Vibration Control) will tend to test out in the real world on high-MP count Canon cameras...will the VC version be as good as the 17-50 f/2.8 non-VC? Better?
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  5. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    Yeah. I saw the shots too. I will be getting that camera myself so I will soon find out. I would love to see more reviews on it. Not trying to start a war, but I do not put much into the dpreview reviews of a camera before it's been on the market a while. They had some very negative things to say about the 50D and they turned out to be way wrong.
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Amen :D

    I don't own it, but I do know several wedding shooters who swear buy it. Many of them have (or have the means to have) much more expensive lenses but they still love this one for their crop body cameras.

    The image quality is said to be on par with L zoom lenses. No problem there. The build quality, while good, may not be up to L quality, but it's still good enough for all but the most demanding shooters. It's not weather sealed (FYI, not all L lenses are sealed either).

    The one thing that I've heard from a couple busy pro shooters, is that the IS system is a weakness. One guy has worn out the IS on two of these lenses. it works fine, it just doesn't last as long as you would expect. So what he does now, is to turn off the IS unless he's actually shooting at speeds that require it....which may not actually be that often when compared to a telephoto lens.
     
  7. cfusionpm

    cfusionpm TPF Noob!

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    Well, with regard to the 7D, I really have no intention of getting it any time soon. I only recently got the 50D and it does everything I need. I'm going to work on upgrading my glass before I even consider a new body.
     
  8. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    I'll be glad to post images for you later then. I have my 7D on order from Adorama now.
     
  9. FidelCastrovich

    FidelCastrovich TPF Noob!

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    It's a top notch lens, buy it. I have it, and i'm a working photojournalist who abuses his gear. Its sharp as hell, has great color rendition and a very useful range.
    If you're going to spend that kind of money, get THAT lens. The 17-40 is a very good lens, but less sharp, F4 and lacks the extra 15mm.
     
  10. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    ell, I saw the problems several days ago...tonight I was combing through the dPreview 7D/50D-10D Canon forum,and somebody else has seen how the 17-55 looked on the 7D.

    Take a look here....

    last 18 MP Cameras compared (with their best Lens) [Page 1]: Canon EOS 7D / 50D - 10D Forum: Digital Photography Review

    It looks to me like the 17-55 f/2.8 IS-USM is simply not up to snuff in the corners on an 18 MP APS-C sensor. These photos show the "video-y" look I mentioned a few days ago. I still ant to see if the 17-40L is a good enough lens to handle 18MP on an APS-C sensor; small, high-density sensors demand extremely high MTF function from the lens.
     
  11. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    I highly doubt the validity of that thread.

    That lens is one of their most profitable EF-S lenses. What would they have to gain from performance like that?

    Like I said, I will have the camera soon and will gladly shoot pics with that combination. If I am wrong, then I am wrong. However, I just do not see the possibility of the claims in that thread. Plus, it's on DPReview, so it immediately gets a raised eyebrow from me. I just do not trust that site anymore.
     
  12. cfusionpm

    cfusionpm TPF Noob!

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    I've never liked dpreview anyway, they feel like the Fox News of camera information. And the 17-40L never even entered my mind since its F4, no IS, and an additional 15mm shorter of an already sacrificed 30mm (55 vs 85). If anything, the other considerations were the 24-70 f2.8L and 24-105 f4L IS, and neither of them fit my needs as good as the EF-S 17-55 f2.8 IS.

    Anyway, I'm pretty much sold on this lens now. I'll be ordering one off Adorama later today. Thanks for all the info.
     

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