Canon 24-70 2.8L verses 17-55 2.8 IS

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by holleigh22, Oct 1, 2007.

  1. holleigh22

    holleigh22 TPF Noob!

    Oct 1, 2007
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    I have an original digital rebel with kit lens, 70-200 f/4L and 50mm 1.4. I LOVE my 70-200 and now need a new general purpose lens. I am planning to upgrade my camera- but I am undecided if I will go 40D (which I can afford) or jump into FF which I cannot afford yet, but the Canon Fall rebates do have me thinking about it.

    I just started shooting feelance for a local paper and I ordered the 17-55 IS. I got a soft lens with focus issues so I sent it back. Now I am thinking of switching to the 24-70.

    In reviewing my images, I mostly shoot above 24 anyway- and most of my shots seem to be at the top end of my current 18-55 kit lense. Feedback I've gotten so far says I need the 17-24 more than the 55-70, but for my style I think this might not be true, even for PJ.

    I will only consider 2.8, so really these are my only 2 choices.
    Is the IQ of the 24-70 superior to the 17-55 or are they similar?
    I am SO AFRAID of the dust issues that I keep leaning toward the 24-70. Plus the weather seal and the fact that it does not telescope seem to indicate it will last longer.

    Eventually I want to get the Tokina 12-24 as well...

    I do have a 580ex to help with low light shots, and a monopod and Kenko 1.4x Pro that I use for outdoor soccer shots with my 70-200.

    SO should I go for the 24-70 (follow my gut) or the 17-55 IS (follow my heart)????

  2. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Nov 15, 2003
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    North New Jersey, United States of America
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    First and foremost... you need to decide now if a FF Canon is in your future. If it is, then the 17-55mm is not an option.

    So it seems you have already ruled on the 24-70. You shoot mostly above 24mm and it will give you a bit more past the 55mm focal length.

    I don't (or will ever) own the EF-S lenses BUT the photo samples I've seen show that both are very comparable. Some will say that the 17-55 is slightly sharper at f/2.8. Everything I have heard about both are good.

    Neither of these are really true. Most of your dust issues will be dust making it on the sensor itself during lens changes. You do change the lens with the camera pointed slightly downward.. don't yah? A weather sealed lens will be only partially effective against the elements since neither the Rebel nor the 40D are weathersealed.
  3. Big Mike

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

    Dec 16, 2003
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    Welcome to the forum.

    To be fair, I haven't used either of those...although they have been on my wish list for a while.

    Personally, I like to shoot wider and I don't think I'd be comfortable with only 24mm on my wide end but if you have considered that...then go with what you are comfortable with.

    Optically, I've heard very few people say anything bad about the 24-70 guy I know, said he's never been happy with his...but it might just be a bad copy. It seems to be the quintessential L glass with top notch sharpness, contrast and color. It is heavy though.

    As for the 17-55 IS, I've heard many great things about it from the wedding crowd. Many say that it's optically as good as the L lenses but Canon doesn't seem to give EF-S glass the L designation. I have also heard of the dust issues, but not much from the wedding shooters. For PJ work, a sealed lens may be a better option...although, dust is more of a problem for gear heads than it is for working shooters :er:

    The IS, is an advantage, no doubt. However, even if you can hand hold a shot at 1/15 or maybe slower...if you are shooting moving won't matter. But they are both F2.8, so having IS is still better than not.

    I probably haven't said anything you don't know....:roll:

    Good luck with your choice.

    *edit* He beat me too it. I forgot to mention that if you do plan on going full frame...then there is only one choice.
    Also, if you stick with crop sensors (the 40D looks amazing) then consider the Canon 10-22 for your ultra wide. I recently debated those, including the Tokina...and I ended up going with the Canon for several reasons. Not the least of which, was that 10mm is significantly wider than 12mm.

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