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Frequent Contributor
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎08-21-2015

Looking for input on lens purchase

[ Edited ]

I own the Canon T4i along with three zoom lenses; the EF-S 10-22, an EF-S 18-135 STM and an EF 70-300. Canon has the EF 24-105 F4l refurbished on sale for $639.99 and I'm wondering about pulling the trigger. One concern is the three lenses have a nice amount of overlap that I would lose on the 24 mm end with thiws purchase. I'm not a professional photographer,  but I do occasionally blow up a shot and hang it on the walls.

 

Normally I leave my 18-135 on the camera. With the 24-105 having less reach on each end of the scale I'm concerned about how much more often I'll be changing lenses.

 


Are my concerns unjustified? I've never useds an L series lens before, so I'm not sure about how much of an improvement I will see. Will it offset any potential disadvantages?

 

Thanks

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 4,952
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase


@Orcrone wrote:

I own the Canon T4i along with three zoom lenses; the EF-S 10-22, an EF-S 18-135 STM and an EF 70-300. Canon has the EF 24-105 F4l refurbished on sale for $639.99 and I'm wondering about pulling the trigger. One concern is the three lenses have a nice amount of overlap that I would lose on the 24 mm end with thiws purchase. I'm not a professional photographer,  but I do occasionally blow up a shot and hang it on the walls.

 

Normally I leave my 18-135 on the camera. With the 24-105 having less reach on each end of the scale I'm concerned about how much more often I'll be changing lenses.

 


Are my concerns unjustified? I've never useds an L series lens before, so I'm not sure about how much of an improvement I will see. Will it offset any potential disadvantages?

 

Thanks


The 24-105 is a very nice lens and a step up in quality from any of your current lenses. But as you say, it has less reach than your 18-135. The reason for that, BTW, is that the 24-105 is a constant-aperture lens, maintaining a maximum of f/4 over its entire range. CA lenses typically have a shorter range than those whose maximum aperture shrinks at the long end. So yes, you may have to change back to your 18-135 or your 10-22 for wide shots.

 

But if you have any future plans to get a full-frame camera (a 6D, for example), you'll be very glad to have the 24-105, since it will work on a FF camera while your existing lenses won't. And on a FF camera the 24-105 is an almost ideal walking-around lens: 24mm gives you about the reach of 18mm on a crop-frame camera, and f/4 is plenty fast for most outdoor use.

 

So the choice is really up to you. I bought a 24-105 before I got a FF camera; and while I didn't use it a whole lot, there were times when it was nice to have. And on my 5D Mk III I use it constantly. YMMV, but if you get the 24-105 at a good price, you can hardly go too far wrong.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
VIP
Posts: 11,097
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

With what you have, I would have torn my pocket getting the money out to buy the EF 24-105mm f4L.  It is lightyears better that what you have.  Except the EF-S 10-22mm and that is the beauty of your situation.  EF-S 10-22mm, EF 24-105mm f4L and EF 70-300mm f4-5.6.  Looks made in heaven to me!

 

However, I would very soon think about replaceing the 70-300mm.  It is not in the same class as the other two and will let you down in IQ when compared.

 

There is a big plus, in my book, about having a constant aperture lens (24-105mm f4L).  Quite a few of the best lenses are constant aperture.  You don't have to be concerned about it changing as you zoom.  Not a big deal to the average amateur but  big concern to the advanced photographer.

 

Sell the EF-S 18-135 STM.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV, even less and less other stuff.
Reputable Contributor
Posts: 766
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

[ Edited ]

First of all, personally I don't have any problem with small "gaps" in the range of focal lengths I have in my camera bag... So I see no issues with a 10-22 paired up with 24-105. Maybe that's because I used to shoot almost exclusively with primes and don't mind changing lenses and/or zooming with my feet. (I actually have 10-22, like you, as well as a 12-24 and a 20/2.8, alongside a 24-70 and a couple 28-135s... I don't have the 18-135, but I also use both APS-C and FF cameras, so for the large part try to buy lenses I can use on both.)

 

24-105mm would be a bit of an upgrade in terms of build quality and sealing, as well as its USM  focus performance for still photos (less so for video, where STM is preferable). IS performance should be about the same... except that the 24-105 is one of those lenses that can go into a feedback loop if you lock it down on a tripod... You need to switch off IS then. I don't know if the 18-135mm is the same (most newer IS lenses aren't).  If you had or were planning to soon get a full frame camera to use alongside your current camera, it might make some sense to get a lens that could be used on both.

 

But, ultimately, I always think image quality is the main deciding factor. If you like to make an occasionall enlargement and hang it on the wall, this is probably a concern of yours, too. So take a close look at side-by-side test shot comparisons of 24-105 and your lens on a site such as the-digital-picture.com. Yes, you'll see some slightly better IQ out of the 24-105. But, comparing same focal length and f-stop (and with both tested on the same cameras), it's really not all that much. Keep in mind that these tests are greatly magnified to really push the limits of any lens: http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=809&Camera=736&Sample=0&... Try other focal lengths there and look at some of the other criteria tested. This is not a condemnation of the 24-105. It's actually more of a compliment for the less expensive EF-S lens. You'll have to be the judge... Is that slight bit of difference in IQ and the other differences between the lenses worth the additional cost?

 

***********


Alan Myers
San Jose, Calif., USA
"Walk softly and carry a big lens."
GEAR: 5DII, 7D(x2), 50D(x3), some other cameras, various lenses & accessories
FLICKR & EXPOSUREMANAGER 

Frequent Contributor
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎08-21-2015

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

I would first like to thank everyone for their well thought out answers. I've thought at times of upgrading to a FF camera, which has been on my mind a bit more lately since a friend across the street from me recently got the 5D Mark 3. If I knew for sure I'd be upgrading I'd almost for sure hold off with my purchase since I could receive a discounted price on the L lens purchasing it as a kit with the camera. But that's definitely not yet a foregone conclusion.

 

Originally my thought was to sell the 18-135 lens to offset some of the cost. Additionally both the L lens and the 10-22 lens use a 77 mm filter. This would allow me to sell the 67 mm polarizing filter from the 18-135 and the two lenses could share the 77 mm polarizing filter, thereby recouping some more of the cost. However, as Alan points out the STM lens may be preferable for video so I'm also not sure about selling the lens.

 

Too bad I didin't just get the standard 18-55 mm kit lens when I purchased the camera - that would make it a much easier decision. But I willl do my homework and look at the comparison photos.

 

I know that generally eBay purchases do not come with a warranty. However, I've come across a couple of sellers that claim to be authorized Canon dealers with retail brick & mortar stores. They also claim that the lenses they sell have been removed from 5D kits where the consumer just purchased the camera body and the lenses are covered by Canon's USA warranty. Do you know if this is correct. I don't want to spend this much on a product without a warranty.

 

Robert, what does YMMV stand for?

 

Thanks again,

Marc

Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,861
Registered: ‎12-02-2012

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

[ Edited ]
Just covering all the focal lengths from wide to telephoto with a lot of inexpensive smaller aperture/variable aperture zooms won't do much to improve your images or to give you a much different look. Yes, the 24-105 is a definite upgrade to your middle of the 3 zooms, and I like my copy fine, but do also consider getting something markedly different from what you already have.

Consider a prime lens. You already have 3 zooms.

In dim light, a prime lens with a wide aperture (f/1.8 or f/1.4 for example) will let you shoot about a 4x faster shutter without having to jack up the ISO.

A prime lens with a wide aperture can give you a shallow depth of field so your subject pops out nicely, and a less-than-pretty or busy background blurs away.

A prime lens will be a lot sharper than any of your current zooms and also a little bit sharper than the 24-105.

What do you shoot? For portraits on a T4i a 50mm or an 85mm prime would be perfect. For walk around a 35mm would be great.

If you go with the budget 50mm f/1.8 STM for just $125.00 it is so cheap you could even get both lenses.

Just something to think about.
Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎08-21-2015

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

Scotty, you bring up another interesting thought that I had not contemplated and I'll explain why. Maybe those with a lot more experience than me can help me understand. I first got into photography in the early 80s with a Canon Rebel film camera. My everyday lens was a Tamron 28-200 zoom.  I used that for years until diverginig for a while and owning several different point & shoots. In 2012 I purchased my first (and only) digital SLR. I've become very used to using either my 18-135 or 70-300. The 10-22 does not get used as often.

 

So I generally go on vacation and use a single zoom lens, only occassionally switching between the two. Zoom in and out as necessary. There's a group of people I know. Zoom in and frame the picture just right. Oh, look at the landscape behind them. Zoom out for that shot. I can understand how you'd use primes in a studio environment. This may sound ridiculous but how do you use primes elsewhere? It seems like there will be a lot of lens switching. And that's assuming you don't actually want a focal length between two primes.

 

More to the immediate suggestion. a 50 mm would be equivalent to an 80 mm on a FF camera. I was looking on the Canon web site at their refurbished lenses. There are three fast prime 50 mm lenses; the EF 50mm f/1.8 II for $100.79, the EF 50 mm f/1.2L USM for $1159.20 and the EF 50mm f/1.4 USM for $319.99.  I'm sure the L lens would be a very good lens.  But how would the other two lenses compare with the 24-105 f/4L IS USM set at 50mm. I understand they'd all be much faster and have a much smaller depth of field. Could the f/1.8 lens at such a low price be as good as the zoom? I guess I'm still considering the EF 24-105 f/4L IS USM, just with prime lenses too.

 

Just noticed one other thing. None of the three aforementioned lenses have image stabilization. Is that a concern?

Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,861
Registered: ‎12-02-2012

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

[ Edited ]
With a prime lens you "zoom with your feet". You step forward or backwards a few feet to compose it. A lot of people say that zooms make them lazy on composition; you always stand up and shoot every shot from eye level from wherever you are, and you don't move around to get the shot from a good angle for a good composition. Primes make you work on the composition, they say.

Primes below super telephoto don't often have IS. They just don't make them that way. You really don't need IS ON A 35mm or a 50mm even on a crop body. Plus the extra shutter speed you get from the bright prime gives you a couple of stops of shutter speed, which is like what IS does.

My 35mm is my walk around on my FF camera. I almost never mount my 24-105 and I never miss it. The zooming isn't that big a deal. The ability to shoot in dim light in a dark restaurant, etc., is much more useful.

For your walk around I'd look at a 35mm. The Sigma Art is great. Canon has one too. The 85mm is probably too long to get used much on a crop.

A new 50mm f/1.8 STM would be so cheap it doesn't matter. You can get both that and the 24-105.
Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?
Frequent Contributor
Posts: 31
Registered: ‎08-21-2015

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase

Thanks for your response. I guess instead of talking about it I can take it for a test. Set my lens to about 35 (or 50) mm, take it out for a triral and KEEP MY HANDS OFF THE ZOOM CONTROL.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 4,952
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Looking for input on lens purchase


@Orcrone wrote:

 

Robert, what does YMMV stand for?

 

Thanks again,

Marc


"Your milage may vary." It's a term from the U.S. auto industry's advertisements (incorporated therein at the behest of their lawyers, no doubt). So if you live elsewhere, you may not have seen it. Sorry for the confusion.  Smiley Wink

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
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