EF 24-70mm f/2.8L VS EF 24-105mm f/4L IS

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by eyalbaram, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. I'm about to purchace one of them for Wedding photography. I have a good offer
    for the 24-105 (~250$ below the market for a new one) but the f/2.8 is really
    tempting me...

    Consider the fact that the 24-70 is aprox 250$ more expensive than the 24-105
    in my country (means that with my discount it's 500$ more expensive), doe's the
    24-70 worth it?

    some said that there are no much diffrences between them for this kind of use
    and some said that the 24-105 is a nise L package for a very average glass...

  2. Hi Eyal,

    I have the 24-105mm f4 on my 5D and it is a great lens only really limited by being f4 and not f2.8. As it has IS then I have managed to shoot in quite nasty conditions (remembering the 5D is good at ISO 1600 and useable at ISO 3200). If I were using this with my 30D I would not want to go to quite such high ISO settings so the f4 would be even more limiting.

    The 24-70mm f2.8 is a good lens IF you get a good copy, there have been lots of reports in the past of problems with this lens however I've not seen anything recently to confirm if everything is better now. The f2.8 is going to help in low light situations and you can obviously be more creative at mid focal lengths be being f2.8 than with f4.

    I don't want to make a suggestion to you as I've not used both in the field but all I can say is I'm very happy with the 24-105 and the saving is not insignificant either.
  3. In the low light of weddings the f2.8 will give a significantly brighter viewfinder and significantly faster focusing. In general the f2.8 has considerably less vignetting and distortion at the wide end and a more pleasing Bokeh. I shot the majority of the portraits and B&G shots at f2.8 yesterday and the results are great. I could not have backed up more to get less DOF if I had the f4 lens. My experience with the IS on that lens is that it doesn't come close to the IS on my 70-200L which I can handhold at the long end far more easily than the f4 in the middle at the same shutter speeds. Not sure why though.

    The guy does have a point though, go into a store and test 4-5 lenses till you get one you are happy with.
  4. Thanks a lot.

    Any tips on what should i pay attentions on, when checking the 24-70 lens?
  5. If someone uses adjectives such as "significantly" and "considerably" to distinguish these lenses, they are engaging in unhelpful overstatement. As nearly every formal test/review of these lenses has established, the image quality and AF speed are very, very similar, and the difference in viewfinder brightness (or background blur, for that matter) is far from "considerable." Eyal, you will have to decide which is more important to you: f/2.8, or greater range, IS, and a lighter, more compact design. Whichever lens you choose, you should not assume it will be free from defects. I doubt there will be any issue with the AF or IS, but you could compare the lens's sharpness against another of your lenses by photographing a bookcase, brick wall, or something similar at varying f stops, focal lengths, and distances. This will at least point out any glaring problem. Otherwise, just use the lens as you normally would, and if you are happy with it, then you have a good lens.
  6. I have both lenses that I use on 5Ds for weddings. I recently moved the 24-105 to the backup bag. I think the 24-70 is a better lens for low light work, and the bokeh is noticeably smoother. That plus the 70-200 picks up right where the 24-70 leaves off.

    Don't get me wrong.. The 24-105 is a good lens that has served me well. I just find that I can do a little better with the 16-35, 24-70, 70-200 kit, all 2.8, all good zooms.

    $500... Hmmmm... It's a touch choice, but I would spring for the 24-70.
  7. Chris, I've owned and shot weddings with both. In low light the difference in AF speed is significant, i.e. noticeable, especially with camera bodies such as the 5D where the faster and more accurate cross sensor doesn't kick in until f2.8, that means you have no cross sensor at all with the 24-105L and in low light it shows. If you deny that the vignetting and distortion at the wide end of the 24-105L is considerable in comparison to the 24-70L then may I venture to guess that you have never used the two of them?

    To hell with test results, real world use is real world use, I was shooting fast dancing 2 days ago in a very dim hall, due to the amount of movement I wasn't using the flash focus assist. The focus was slow enough as it was, with the 24-105L I would have been screwed, by the time it would have found focus the people would be no longer there.

    Did you notice that I didn't mention sharpness? I have my opinion but it is subjective so I didn't bother voicing it. The rest is easy to see for anyone using both.
  8. "the 5D where the faster and more accurate cross sensor doesn't kick in until f2.8, that means you have no cross sensor at all with the 24-105L and in low light it shows."

    that's not quite right. The center sensor is cross-type at all apertures, retaining AF down to f5.6. At f2.8 a special "high-precision" long-baselength mode activates. But you definitely have cross sensing at f4. The difference between ordinary cross sensor and "high precision" cross sensor is in my opinion difficult to demonstrate.

    My 24-105 definitely has extreme distortion and falloff at 24mm, and somewhat poor bokeh. But low light focusing on my 5D has never been a problem. The 24-70 is in my opinion considerably more flattering for skin tones and portraits.
  9. jml


    I just had this choice to make. I chose the 24-70L. Got it, sent it back for focusing ring problems. Got the replacement, noticed some backfocusing issues, then found through other forums (DWF) etc. that this is a major problem with this lens. Word has it that Canon is going to do a little re-do on this lens, perhaps this fall....who knows. Anyway, "if" you get a good copy of this problematic lens, you may be okay...otherwise just plan on sending it in to be re-calibrated after you buy it. I sent mine back. Replaced it with the 24-105L as I wouldn't be shooting at f/2.8 at the reception anyway. I have my little 50mm and 85 1.8 and 16-35L and 70-200L IS and also have my sweet little Tamron 28-75....which several pros have replaced their Canon 24-70L's with to cover that range! I love mine, the little cheapie is superb (does hunt a bit and is a tad noisy), but it covers that range quite well. Do some research Eyal, go to DWF, you will get some very good info there on this lens by top shooters. Oh, and btw Canon's insider comment on this lens is that they know it has this issue and they have just not been able to figure out what the cause is. Thus the planned refurbishing. Hope this helps.
  10. jml


    Sorry, almost forgot....you didn't say what camera you use but the 24-70L is most problematic on the 20D. Does better on the 5D which I use, but still didn't want the hassle on this otherwise great lens.
  11. Both are okay lenses. Both distort at the wide end, the 24-105 a tad bit more distortion than
    the 24-70 with both being awful if you are using a ff sensor. I've had two 24-70s and both of
    them needed repaired. I sold them and replaced it with a 24-105 for the greater range which
    I find more useful at weddings and in a pinch could shoot an entire wedding with just that
    lens ... but I prefer prime lenses, so don't depend on a mid-range zoom as much as others
    may. I personally think the 24-70 is too big for what you get. I have enough big lenses.
  12. jml


    I agree with Marc.....but don't we always? :) As my experience grows I'm finding how advantageous it is to use my primes rather than the zooms in some situations. Speaking of which....Marc ever used the 28 1.8? I've heard some good things about this litte "sleeper lens"......and some bad, what do you think? Sorry to hijack the thread, but maybe Eyal will find this helpful as well for future reference. Thanks.
  13. I'm using 30D body.

    thanks alot for the detailed information...

    as for now i'm tending to go on the 24-105 (got scared from the malfunctioned mentioned here...)

    again, thanks alot,

  14. jml


    Hey Eyal, here is a link to wedding that was shot with the 24-105L a couple weeks ago by Peter Gregg. http://www.pbase.com/pgp777/neal07

  15. Take a look at the 2 full res images I posted at the bottom of this thread:


    I have both, and don't know if my 24-105 is just exceptional, but it is much softer towards the corners, plus the aforementioned light fall-off. One place to compare: towards the right edge, the the gilt picture frame on the flagstone fireplace facade.
  16. A lot of wedding photographers I know are dumping their 24-70s for the lighter/longer reach/more reliable 24-105mm. Mostly due to the fact that too many 24-70s have issues and quality control seems to be a large problem with this lens. And coupling the 24-105mm with some primes like the 24mm/35mm f/1.4 and 85mm f/1.2, etc.

  17. Everyone has their poison and my pref is the 24-105/4
  18. Is there really a cross sensor up to f5.6 on the 5D? I'd have to check that out. Would love it to be so...

    I have to admit that it may not be too long before I do sell my 24-70L for the 24-105L and primes but that is just because I've had my fair share of problems with the 24-70L and have fallen in love with shooting wide open. I also need a street lens for a couple of projects and the 24-105L will fit the bill nicely. The 24-70L is certainly the better lens - when it works as it should....
  19. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    To each his own.

    My dredging over every nuance of the Canon range for the last year and a bit, I still maintain for pro wedding work, when choosing from the zooms on offer, speed remains the primary criterion.

    Thus I am still not swayed from the opinion that the three (from five) F2.8L zooms are always the first choice, for all the reasons, I have previously documented.

  20. I love my 24-70. It is heavy but so is the 70-200 and a lot of people use that. Jeff Ascough creates beautiful images and he uses the 24-70 quite a bit. So if it is good enough for him. It's good enough for me. However, i do find that sometimes i need more speed. It's all Marc Williams' fault. He keeps recommending all these fast lenses. So right now, i'm just waiting for the 35mm L to be in stock at the dealers. That'll be the last lens purchase for the year. For now i'll have to just be happy with the 50 1.4.
  21. Well, just to get cross wise with everything that's been said so far...

    I think the Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS is a significantly better lens for doing weddings with a 30D. I prefer wider, and 24mm on a crop frame camera doesn't do it. You don't see full frame users drooling over 38-110mm lenses. Why should 30D owners want one?

    But, to each his own. :)
  22. jml


    Well, here we are a day later. Received the 24-105L yesterday. Spent about 8 hours yesterday and 4 today checking this lens out and doing comparison shots with my Tamron, just for good measure. Remember, I returned my 24-70L so could no longer compare to that. Here is what I've learned. At 4.0 my Tamron is just as sharp and I could hand hold at just about every shutter speed I could on the Canon, no kidding. That was a surprise. Anyway, the flare was bad, then I removed the UV filter and voila...that improved quite nicely. The vignetting of this lens is indeed really bad, and yes the distortion is lousy as well. So, in comparing what I have in that range, the 24-105L just doesn't warrant the thousand dollars when what I have is "almost" as good...at least at 4.0. I won't be shooting my Tamron wide open anymore....will have to rely on the primes I guess. So, I'm disappointed..but will remain hopeful that Canon comes out with something soom more worthy of my money.
  23. I've just picked up my 17-55 F2.8 IS (2x30D & 400D back up). Though I have only done test shots the 17-55 is just about perfect for the way I like to work. Why limit your self to 38mm and f4. I got a tamron 17-50 f2.8 some time ago so I could cover the standard zoom range. I found that I wasn't taking it off the camera and would use my primes on the second body. Questions like, how long your may 30D be your backup if you go for a ff camera as your main body may be important considerations. My 100mm f2 generally lets me work at longer focal lengths if I need it. Good luck

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