Good wide angle and walkaround lenses for 40D

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by jeffrey_mcconnell, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. I'll be purchasing a 40D very soon and I was planning on getting the 28-135 IS lens with it as a kit since the
    lens is discounted. I was planning on using that for a walk around lens and buying a 50 1.8 prime for low light
    situations. I also love shooting landscapes and was thinking about the Tokina 22-24 f/4. My concern is that the
    28-135 is not wide enough and I will end up switching it with the Tokina a lot. Does anyone have a similar set up?

    I've also considered buying the Canon 17-40L for wide angle and complimenting it with either the 28-135 or the
    Tamron 28-75 f/2.8. My concern with this set up is that the 17-40L would not be "wide" enough on a crop sensor
    40D. I don't need it to be insanely wide but I do want it wide enough that I get good landscape shots. I've
    looked at the 17-85 IS but from the reviews it seems like its not the best deal for what your paying for.

    Any suggestions would be helpful. I keep going back and forth on this. I mostly shoot landscapes when traveling
    or hiking and I shoot people at family gatherings and at home (I have a new baby).


  2. Hi Jeff. I have just upgraded from a 20D to 40D and I find it an excellent combination with my 17 - 40L. Although at its widest with the cropped sensor it is not always quite as wide as one would like, on these few occasions the option of stitching is always available. Someday I hope to upgrade further to FF when the 17 - 40 should really come into its own.

  3. If I could only have one lens for my 40d it would definitely be the EFs 17-55 2.8 IS. This lens will do most of what you
    mentioned in your post very well.
  4. I have the 17-40L as my main walkaround lens and its a great L series, relatively cheap and not too heavy.
  5. I've also considered the 17-40L, 50 1.8, and 70-200 f/4 IS as a possible setup. The only thing I was concerned about is the 17-40 being too short.
  6. Jeff, why don't you get a 5D Mark II (or a 5D) and a 17-40/4 L? That way you'll have a superb, very wide landscape
    lens, and much better image quality than you'll get with a 40D.
  7. Yea that wide end of digital is frustrating. For general use the 17 - 55 or 17-85 range is probably most useful but some opt
    for an UW ( like 10-22 ) and ad a 24-105 or 28-135 or some other full frame lens to cover more ground.

    I agree that 28 is not wide enough. Maybe consider getting the kit with the 40D and the 17-85. Not a bad place to start. You
    can see what you lack and go from there without a huge $$ investment.
  8. I have a 40D with the 28-135 kit. I also have: 85/1.8, 100/2.8, EF-S 10-22, and two Olympus OM primes, 50/1.8 and 35/3.5.

    I almost never use the 28-135, and when I do, i usually wish I didn't. Perhaps i have a bad copy, but I find it too soft when compared to the rest of my lenses.

    I suggest you get the 40D body only, and buy a good lens. I think you would be very happy with the 17-40L. The 27mm equivalency at the wide end is sufficiently wide for many landscape shots, and it's an excellent lens. A friend has one, and I've used it on my 40D with good results.

    If you need wider, the EF-S 10-22 is excellent.

    I have yet to purchase the ideal walk around for my 40D. These days I probably use the 100mm Macro as a walk around most of the time. Or the 35mm for street photography.

    When the funds are available, I think I will replace my 28-135 with the f/2.8 24-70L.

    In summary, skip the 28-135. Buy the body and one lens, the very best one you can afford that suits one (or more) of your needs. Buy more very good lenses as funds allow.

    I hope this helps.
  9. Bill I did not care for the 28-135 mine was always soft tool. I sold it right after I purchased the kit. I now have a 24-105
    which is a fine lens but also not really wide enough but an all around better long range zoom. A 10-22 or something similar
    is next on my list.
  10. I have a 28-135 combined with a sigma 10-20. Excellent combination for MY shooting. My 28-135 seems to be a good copy (nice&sharp and no creep at all, even after years of use).
    But I generally shoot 28-135 indoors/outdoors for my kids playing, where I like the extra reach up to 135.
    I only shoot wide angle for city-/landscape, so switching is not so much of a problem.
  11. sbp


    IMHO, Bill is on point. You might consider buying the 40D body only, and something like the 24-105 f/4L or 17-40 f/4L. The image
    quality from these lenses is significantly better than the kit lens. They are also useable if you upgrade to FF.
  12. That's definitely a consideration. I was thinking of possibly getting the 40D body and the 17-55 f/2.8 IS along with the 70-200 f/4 IS. I'm not completely sold on the 17-55 yet though. I was thinking maybe the 17-40L (which is less expensive) w/the tokina 11-16 f/2.8 for wide angle stuff. I've read some reviews that say that the 24-105 f/4 L isn't much better than the 28-135. Don't know if that's really true, but its made me cautious in considering it as an option.
  13. I have the 40D and did have the EFS 17-85. It was just to soft. I replaeced it with the EF17-40 f4L and have been very happy with it. The L glass is so sharp and color and contrast is so good. Of course I added the 24-105 and it is my go to lens but for anything "wide" the 17-40 is my main stay. It is reasonbly priced and goes to either side of a 50mm equivalent on a crop sensor. You wil love the 40D.
  14. If you are planning to get the 28-135 lens then for a wide angle I would choose the Canon 10-22. There will be gap between 22 and 28 but This is not a range I think you will miss.

    For my 40D I have the 10-22, 17-85 IS and the 70-300 DO IS. Together they give me a 30:1 zoom range enabling me to cover all subjects. My favourite lens is the 10-22.
  15. for my crop camera, I like the Tamron 28-75
  16. I have the Canon 5D and 40D.

    When I use my 17-40mm lens on my 5D, I don't find it wide enough to my taste, even less with the 40D cropped sensor. With your 40D, you should consider getting the EF-S 10-22mm.
    I also have the 28-135mm lens and I don't find it built as sturdy as other Canon lenses.

    IMHO, if you are considering changing cameras, you should consider getting the 5D full frame sensor like Mark Pierlot suggested, then your lenses will be exactly what they are. It depends on how many lenses you allready have that won't be useful anymore and on your budget. Or do you plan on keeping both cameras, like I do.
    I like to have both cameras mounted with different lenses and be ready for different needs without having to change the lenses too often and risking getting dust trapped on the sensor.

    Personnaly, I am considering buying the new Canon 14mm f/2.8L II EF USM Lens for my 5D one day, but it's quite expensive! It is just border being a fish eye but it's not. So no circular photos. Just a beautiful ultrawide angle lens.

    I hope this helps.

  17. Another vote for the 17-40L. When I was still shooting crop, my 28-135 gathered a lot of dust, while the 17-40 stayed mounted as my favorite walk-around lens. That only works, though, if your walkaround shooting habits are more wide than tele -- that is if you walk on the wide side.
  18. Of course if you get the 28-135 cheaply in the kit, I'd go for that one too. It's actually a fairly decent lens.
  19. I have a 40D with the 28-135 and it is actually a good lens if you understand it's limitations. No lens can do everything. I also have the Tokina 12-24 and I love it. It stays on my camera more often than not. The 17-40L is an excellent lens but it may not be wide enough for you or your needs. Try renting a couple of different lenses as that is about the best way to determine which lens works best for your style of shooting.
  20. The 28-135 is a pretty good lens ... I used it lot when I shot film. But it's at the end of it's life cycle, I think. It did not stand up particuarly well to heavy use, and I eventually sold it. The 17-40L is a great lens. I used it frequently with my 10D and 20D, and it has become a real work horse with my 5D.
  21. I know many really like the 17-40 but IMO its to short of a range to make sense as a standard zoom. When I think
    standard zoom I want to be able to get into portrait mode ( 70-135 ) but thats just me. I kinda feel if a zoom range is very
    short Ill just use a prime. ( UW is the exception )

    The 17-55 is a nice lens but its not the same quality feel as the L's and its the same price. For that reason and its EF-S
    which can be limiting. But if your looking for high quality photos from a 40D its probably the best. But just a bit short on
    range for me.
  22. how about 10-22, 70-200 f/4 & tamron 17-50 2.8?
  23. 17-40 is not long enough for a walk around and the large aperture makes it boring to use. I have it for my 40d, with a 24-
    70, and I am going to sell it. The 17-55 is the logical choice. Combined with a prime in the 28 to 50 focal range depending
    on your budget and usage. 35mm f/1.4 is the best lens I've used on my 40d.
  24. If you are not planning going FF soon I'd get the Canon 10-22 and the Canon 17-55. I have the 10-22 and I can't be happier, it has a great range and it is very sharp and contrsty. I also usedthe 17-55 for a period of 10 days and the lens is great L or not it has the IQ of such and is pretty fast throught and as a bonus has the IS might not be the cheapest but it sure is a good lens. Those 2 will get you from 10 to 55.Should you get a good 70/200 you will only miss the 55 to 70 range.
    Best of luck
  25. Arnold, the 10-22, 70-200 f/4 & tamron 17-50 2.8 is a combo I have seriously considered for a while. Basically I can afford either the Canon 17-55 2.8 or the 10-22 and a tamron 17-50. This would be ideal because I'm not sure that the 17-55 is wide enough for my taste. I'm a little hesitant though because I've read some reviews about the tamron having focusing issues. Anyone had experiences with this lens?
  26. Hi Jeffrey,

    I'm going with almost the exact setup your described initially. I use the 24-70/2.8 instead of the 28-135. Tthe
    Tokina 12-24/4 seems a perfect combo of price, performance and build quality. On the crop sensor cameras I use
    mostly now, it gives slightly wider angle of view that would compare well to the 20 and 21mm that were usually my
    widest lenses in my film/full frame systems. I don't really feel the need for wider or for a faster lens in this
    focal length.

    I also use the 70-200/2.8 IS, 85/1.8 and 100/2.8 Macro (so I don't really need the length the 28-135 would give me).

    It really comes down to personal preference and you can make yourself nuts with all the possible combinations.
    Yes, sometimes one pairing won't be as convenient as another and you might find yourself changing lenses too
    much. Someone else might need f2.8 and find the 11-16/2.8 Tokina a better choice, pairing it with a 16-35 or
    17-whatever. Others will find 17mm wide enough on crop sensor. Still others will need wider and want a 10mm.

    Stop second guessing yourself. Just get something and start working with it. You'll either be happy or trade it
    for something else that better serves your particular needs. Lightly used lenses can often be resold to get back
    much of what you invested initially. eBay, Craigslist and sites like this make that easy these days.

    Do, just get something and start shooting. Only then will you know.
  27. I purchased a 40D when it first came out and love it. That being said, I would echo some of what has been written here -
    and definitely consider either 5D Mark II. The sensor crop factor with landscape photography can be painful. That being
    said, if that's a bit hard on the budget, I would also consider the 50D. It's only a matter of time until the 40D is
    I use the 17-55/2.8 as my primary lens. I've also got the 70-200/2.8 for when I need a closer shot. Both have fantastic
    build quality, are sharp, and with plenty of contrast. Conveniently, they also accept the same filter diameter. Adorama
    has the 70-200 as a refurb... I've never seen the 17-55 available as a refurb. The only catch with the 17-55 (and what
    made purchasing it so hard) was that it's about $1k - and it's EF-S. Eventually, I probably will go FF, and then that lens
    will be useless. For me, it was still the right decision, but definitely take this into consideration.
  28. I'm a little peeved that the camera stores are taking advantage of new DSLR buyers who may not understand what lenses they'll need, and selling them the old 28-135mm lenses. That focal length range was fine on 35mm film SLRs (and is fine on full frame DSLRs, though the available lenses are probably not what most FF buyers will want) but they are completely wrong for almost all new DSLR buyers who are looking for a standard "walk around lens."
    Because of the smaller size of the sensor on your 1.6x cropped sensor DSLR, the 28mm focal length is really not a wide angle lens at all. If a 50mm focal length was a "normal" lens back in the 35mm film days, the focal length that will provide an equivalent field of view on your cropped sensor DSLR is about 31mm. So if you get the 28-135mm lens you are essentially getting more or less a "normal to telephoto" lens.
    A lens that would provide an equivalent angle of view range on your new camera would have a focal length range of about 17mm-85mm. (Canon does sell a EFS 17-85mm lens for this very reason.)
    Unless your needs are rather unusual, I recommend against getting the 28-135mm lens. You would likely be better off with the newer EFS 18-55mm image-stabilized kit lens - it is reportedly a pretty decent performer and it comes as part of the standard kits. If you are not yet certain what focal lengths will give you the angles of view you are looking for, shoot with this for awhile and then make investments in more expensive lenses.
    If you are certain that you need a very high quality lens that covers this focal length range, Canon also makes a EFS 17-55mm f/2.8 IS lens that is quite good but pricey.
    If you are getting a 50mm prime for your new camera because that is what people got back in the "old days" when they bought a SLR body, stop. On your new camera a 50mm lens will behave like a 80mm lens on the old film cameras. If you would have purchased a 35mm film SLR with a 80mm standard prime, then the 50mm lens on your 40D would make some sense. But you wouldn't have done that, right? Again, if you need a "normal prime" for the 40D, something in the 28mm to 35mm range would be more appropriate.
    I shot the 17-40mm f/4 L on a cropped sensor body for a couple years. In my opinion the 17-40mm f/4 L is a great lens for small aperture landscape/architecture and similar photography on a full frame body. It is not necessarily the best option on a cropped sensor body. It has corner softness issues at the larger apertures, and while its performance becomes more uniform across the frame when you stop beyond f/8, diffraction blur on the cropped sensor bodies is a concern beyond f/8. As one who owns and likes and uses the 17-40 on FF, if I were getting a cropped sensor body I would get the EFS 17-55 f/2.8 IS instead.
    If you need a true ultra wide angle lens you might look at something like the EFS 10-22 or equivalent. On your 40D this lens provides angle of view coverage comparable to using a 16-35mm lens on 35mm/full frame.
    Regarding the 5D and landscape issues I'm going to make two observations. First, full frame has its advantages for this type of photography - more options for wide angle coverage, potentially better resolution if you make large prints, and a greater range of useful apertures. The primary advantage comes from the larger sensor and not so much from the larger number of photosites. If cost is a concern and you want to go full frame (and I'm not saying you necessarily should do so) the 12MP 5D could be a fine option since its price has come down a lot and used copies are available at very good prices. With the right lenses and technique it is certainly capable of producing fine 20" x 30" prints.
    My second observation is that if landscape is a big thing for you one of the Rebels with the 10MP or 12MP sensor could be as good as the 40D. The image quality will be indistinguishable from that of the 40D, and you don't need the most significant differentiating features of the 40D such as faster burst mode. In addition, the smaller body size could be an advantage if you do your landscape photography on foot.
  29. Jeff

    I have the Tamron 17-50 and have had no issues with it. It is my most used lens for landscape and night photography. Don't worry so much about what you read in the net about front or back focusing issues. I believe you can have it repaired or replaced just in case you will find a problem with the lens.
    Add the 10-22 and you can have a very good wide angle setup. I've got the chance to use a Sigma 10-20 one time and it's nice to have but most of the time for my style, 17-50 would be enough.

  30. I bought my 40D with the kit 28-135. In one word....."worthless". I bet I haven't used it for 3 frames. What a stupid focal length to put in a kit. I already had a Sigma 17-70 that stay mounted 90 percent of the time. Do yourself a favor and buy the body only and get a wider zoom.

  31. I do not agree that the 28-135 is "worthless"...I have shot 90% the images in my portfolio with it and while I probably would have gotten better results with a better fit my budget and I think my results are pretty good with it. I just try to get the best out of it that I can. I find it to be a decent walkaround lens...not real wide and not a lot of zoom...bit it can get the job done in many cases.
  32. It may not be worthless but I do agree with one of the posters above that camera stores take advantage of new DSLR
    buyers who may not realize that 28-135 is not a good all around zoom range.
  33. I would be sold on the 17-55 IS except that sometime in the future I see myself moving to FF and I'm having a hard time convincing myself to spend $1000 on a lens that won't transfer to FF (even though it may be a while before I change to FF). I recently tried a 24-105 and really liked it. I may end up getting that along with an ultra wide lens to compensate for the shorter end that it doesn't cover.
  34. Hi Jeff,

    Reading this thread takes me back to when I purchased my first DSLR system. The same questions cropped up and similar opinions and responses often. I certainly don't have the depht of experience that others on here have got, but due to the similarities in your queries with my own, i felt I should share my thoughts with you!

    I went for the 17-55 IS f/2.8 and love it. One thing that doesn't appear to have been mentioned is that the f2.8 over the 17-40's f4 will be of immense value when "... I shoot people at family gatherings and at home (I have a new baby)...". Ths ability and speed of the lens indoors in lower light situations is amazing. To be fair I haven't used a 17-40 f4, but can understand its capabilities. Additionally you rarely hear of there being any problems with this lens. Whilst it isn't an 'L' lens, it has been designed specifically for crop sensor camera's and as such on the 40D becomes a winning combination.

    You more recently mention that you can't get your head around spending $1,000 on a lens that will become redundant when you go FF. If you are serious about going FF then why not take advice from others above and start now with a 5D (prices coming down all the time) aremove the 'issue'. Alternatively, when/if you go full frame (perhaps due to commercial reasons), should finances permit, it would be adviseable to have a back up and a 40D with 17-55 on it would be an excellent choice... This is certainly the view that I have taken should my 'career' take off!

    One other thing - you mentioned looking at a 70-200... I recently invested in the f4 version and similarly love it. I personally wanted to save weight when travelling (and in turn several hundred $$$$!) and haven't yet found a situation where I wish I'd done differently. Sure, if I was a wedding photographer then I would most certainly have acquired the 2.8... but as I write i'm not! WTS...

    As other people have mentioned, your choice really is YOUR choice, however taking into consideration everything you have said above and my personal experience I would choose: 10-22mm, 17-55mm and 70-200 (f4) and set about taking some awesome photographs!

    Good luck!

  35. It's all a question of when will you get a FF body. Soon? Ger the 17-40/4. Don't know exactly? 17-55/2.8 IS.

    I had most of Canon lenses under 300mm and tried most I don't have. Few lenses impressed me as the 10-22 and 17-55. They are the reason for my decision that when I buy a FF/1.3X body it will be an addition to the EF-S that I have (40D), not a replacement. Yes, they are that good.

    Happy shooting,
  36. Jeffrey, I went that route I had a 24-105 and just this weekend added a 10-22. Those 2 with a 50mm or 35mm prime is
    an amazing set up. I have only taken about 50 shots with the 10-22 but I am very impressed. I was considering the
    Tokina 11-16 2.8 but I must say the longer range sure helps, at 22 it is still useable for closer shots where 16 would
    really not be.

    I too plan to move to a full frame body one day but really its not that much better in the full frame world and I prefer
    some things about the 40D/50D series ( faster frame rate, pop up flash, etc ) so I am in no hurry and how that I can
    shoot wide angle ( finally ) I am in even less of a hurry.

    You would be perfectly happy with a 17-55 or a 24-105. For general use the 17-55 range is probably the most useful so
    as a 1 lens solution its probably the best one but I agree it sure don't feel like a $1000 lens. At $700 new, even the 10-22
    seems a bit high, thats why I purchased it used.
  37. How about the 12mm or 15mm Canon EF-S lenses. Oh, thats right, just wishful thinking and never will happen.

    I have the 17-40 and love it. At times not wide enough on a crop camera. My son has the 10-22 and he loves it. We swap back and forth frequently and we are both very pleased with both lenses. You can't go wrong with either lens, just choose the range you think you will prefer.
  38. Well, I settled on the 10-22, 24-104, and 70-200. Thank you everyone for your advice and suggestions. It was all very helpful and informative. I'm sure I'll have more once I start shooting. :)
  39. Great Jeff, I would also suggest get them 1 at a time. Maybe start with a 24-105 and go from there. Also post some photos
    and maybe your thoughts on how you like the setup.
  40. Good choice. I have the 10-22 and 24-105 L and it is a pretty seamless combination, without too many lens changes involved. They share a common filter size.

    I used to have the 28-135 but sold it as it never felt quite right on a crop camera. The extra 4 mm on the 24-105 is worth a lot more than the 30 mm you lose at the long end, and IQ is very good.
  41. I use a 10-20mm Sigma and a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8. These two are a great, cost effective, high quality combo… especially the Tamron which has received many great reviews. Eventually I added a Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 and have a great kit now.
  42. Hi Jeff, have you read the (numerous) previous posts on this topic? I would suggest you read (or re-read) them...
  43. >
    If I could only have one lens for my 40d it would definitely be the EFs 17-55 2.8 IS. This lens will do most of what you
    mentioned in your post very well.

    I totally agree. This lens is blazingly sharp and performs excellently through the entire zoom range. I own the Canon 11-22
    and the 28-135 and I can easily say that if I had to choose but one zoom lens for a walk around it would be the 17-55.
    There are a few times when I wish the focal length were a bit longer but the reality is that in those cases changing another
    lens is the best bet.

    The 17-55 is a bit expensive but it is an impressive performer and having a constant maximum aperture of f/2.8 is really nice
    and an important feature for me. Having IS is icing on the cake.

    Don Bryant

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