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Sunday, January 07, 2007


What a shitty lens......(or at least mine is). Very soft on the left side, and I swear that my KIT lens is sharper. Needless to say, I'm sending it back for the Sigma 17-70 f2.8, which is what I should have bought in the first place. I'm also picking up the Sigma 10-20.

Couple of Sample shots from the 17-40 are below. It lacks great color and sharpness, which is what the "L" series is supposed to be about. Darin and Mike Parker both have the 17-70, and the pics are night and day. Parker showed me some comparisons between the two, and the Sigma wins in a blowout. At a price of only $349, after you enter the secret code at bh ;), I have to pick it up, along with the 10-20.

I also have a telephoto on the way (A cheap Sigma 75-300). So hopefully I can share some photos on here in the upcoming weeks.

Spring needs to hurry up.


Steve Miller said...

Thanks for the commentary. I have been lens shopping for about a month now and information like this is very helpful.

DM said...

Yeah, I don't know what is up with Canon, but their quality control is HORRIBLE. I'm not the only one with a soft copy recently. For nearly the same price, you can get the sigma 17-70 2.8 (wayyyyy better for low light than the f4 on the 17-40), AND a Sigma 10-20 UWA. Both very SHARP lenses. Darin has some GREAT examples of the 17-70 on . I agree with others that Sigma owns the wide angles, and Canon owns the telephotos.

Laurent Sicard said...

Hello there,

after purchasing the 17-40 L (my first L class lens) I ran some test (newspaper test and real life test) at various aperture (5.4, 7.1, 9.0) and focal length (17mm, 28mm, 40mm) between the 17-40 L and the 18-55 EF-S from the Rebel XT kit.

I was very disappointed by the 17-40. At 17mm the center sharpness was the same as the kit lens on the edges and the corners....the kit was better.

At 28mm and 40mm the 17-40 has an edge....except in the corner where the kit lens is as good or better.

The color is obviously better with the 17-40 and the contrast as well. However I found the 17-40 to have too much contrast to my taste. Contrast can be easily added in post is hard to remove without adding noise.

I was interested in this lens because it has the full frame compatibility. However after seeing the sharpness at the borders and corners on the APS-C format I clearly don't think it will be good in the corners of a FF sensor!!!!

So for a $700 lens I have to say that I was expecting better. I ended up like you...returning it to the store and taking the Sigma 17-70.

I ran the same tests...the sigma shows more consistency across the frame. The 17mm is the weak spot like the 17-40, however the sharpness from 22mm is better than the kit lens. All that for half the price of the 17-40. Only one remark, the color are a bit warm with the 17-70 where they were accurate with the 17-70.

Chromatic aberrations are virtually the same on the 17-40 and 17-70...way better than the kit lens.

I still consider the "L" class lenses from Canon. Beside the construction quality of the 17-40, I don't see why Canon put that lens in that class. Optical Quality is not there.



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