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DPChallenge Forums >> Hardware and Software >> walk-around lens
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11/29/2005 11:49:05 PM · #1
all right, so I just bought a Canon 20D and now I'm looking for a good walk-around lens....something not too long, but with zoom. I take pictures of people, city life, scenery, ect.

A couple good ones I've been recommended:

Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Canon EF 28-135mm F/3.5-5.6 IS USM

price range is anything under $500

- please post all suggestions and opinions that come to mind

thanks

Message edited by author 2005-11-29 23:50:08.
11/30/2005 12:24:46 AM · #2
Deja vu! We just had a thread like this this morning.

Walkaround Lens

I realize it was for the Nikon, but there's info for you there.

This is a common topic too, so check the threads.

I am a big fan of IS too, so my ideal walk-around camera and lens for an inexpensive setup would be a Minolta 5D and a Sigma 18-200! Small with great range and IS!

I wanted the 17-85 myself, but I saw comparisons of that lens and the Sigma 18-125 and the Sigma was sharper and a lot less money, so that's what I bought at the time as a walk-around lens.

Message edited by author 2005-11-30 00:25:17.
11/30/2005 12:48:18 AM · #3
Tamron SP 28-75mm 2.8 XR Di...fast, sharp as tack and resonably priced...can not beat it.
11/30/2005 01:02:28 AM · #4
Depends...I moved from a consumer 28-80 to the Sigma 18-50 2.8 and was using it for my walkaround lens and there is HUGE difference between 18 and 28 in real world use. Especially indoors. I wanted more than the 50 oudoors so i too went looking about a month ago.

I chose the Tamron SP24-135 3.5-5.6. I tried the canon 17-85, a vrey nice lens, but I wanted more than 85mm. The Tamron has great range, extremely sharp, fast focusing - just great. and it does macro, a true bonus for a walkaround lens. The SP is tamron's pro line.

Some sample shots:
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11/30/2005 02:20:03 AM · #5
Every time I see a thread with this title I have an urge to find a walkaround lens..

Finally I found one. :-).

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11/30/2005 09:35:14 PM · #6
ok ok....man I'm having a hard time deciding b/w:

1. Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 XR MACRO ASPHER f/CANON
(sounds good, but is it kinda weak range on both ends)
2. Canon EF 28-135mm F/3.5-5.6 IS USM
(heard some good, heard some bad)
3. Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
(sounds good, very nice range....but more expensive than others)

so, what do you guys think? I like the 3rd one, but is it really worth the extra $100?
11/30/2005 10:09:11 PM · #7
I read the title of the thread, my first thought was.... short walk.
12/01/2005 01:47:01 AM · #8
I have the Tamron 28-75 and find it not wide enough for landscape and buildings on a cropped sensor.

I've had the Canon 28-135IS and wasn't happy with the optics and sold it for the Tamron. It's range is quite good though.

I've read the review of the 17-85 on Photozone, it's sharp but has a lot of barrel distortion at the wide end and has lots of CA. I think the range is nicer as 18mm is wide enough for landscape and buildings while the longer end can let you take portraits as well.

Another option maybe Sigma 18-125, Sigma 18-50, Tamron 17-35 (my favorite walking around lens). Good luck.

Message edited by author 2005-12-01 01:47:39.
12/01/2005 01:52:53 AM · #9
Ive been looking for a walkaroud lense as well, and i think ive decided on the the 17-85 IS

Mainly because it goes from 17mm and anything above that is not wide enough for me. It was the first time i used IS and i like it.

PM me if you want some with and without IS pics, from my 2 minute test at the store.
12/01/2005 01:55:59 AM · #10
Very good review of the 17-85IS here.
//www.photozone.de/8Reviews/lenses/canon_1785_456_is/index.htm
12/01/2005 02:11:37 AM · #11
I have 17-85. It was a natural upgrade of 18-55 kit lens.

No regrets still. IS, perfect range for wide and mid-tele shots, FTM, USM for quiet and quick operation.
Expensive. Having all that is mentioned above for less would be great. As always :) But - you usually get what you are paying for.

Yes, there is visible barrel distortion at wide angle. I fix it with PTlens plugin in Photoshop.
I recommend the lens.
12/01/2005 05:23:11 AM · #12
I'm very happy with my Sigma 18-125 lens. Not too large, light weight and I'm happy with the results.
02/18/2006 12:08:20 PM · #13
I am also starting to consider a walk around lens - for a future purchase.

I love fast lenses for the blurred background effect. For that reason I love my 70-200 2.8.

I would love a wide range for landscape and also a bit of a zoom.

Considering the Canon 24-70...but am wondering if there is a fast lens that has a wider range? I am partial to Canon L - for quality, sharpness etc.

Any recommendations? Is it possible Canon might come out with something similar to the 24-70 - but maybe wider range?

Currently I have the 70-200, 18-55 kit (too slow for what I like to do), and am getting the 50mm 1.8 II shortly.
02/18/2006 01:18:37 PM · #14
I'll be conservative for a minute and say, primes are best, even for walking.

As far as zooms are concerned, Canon's EF 24-70L f/2.8 would afford a great range while providing stellar optical quality and speed (for a zoom). Although I don't own one -I use the less expensive EF 17-40L f/4, I have access to a 24-70 when I want it and found that I want it more often than expected.

I find both lenses very useful for street photography, shots most people would consider photo-journalism and casual landscapes (in the wider sense). Discriminating landscape photographers (those who insist on capturing a lot of detail) would, I imagine, use primes. I carry the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 for this purpose (as well as for some portraits and street stuff). The 50mm, however, is not a normal lens at all when multiplied by 1.6 (300D/350D, 10D, 20D), even when multiplied by 1.3 (1D Mark II).

I have to admit that being as lazy, unprepared and mildly obsessed with image quality as the next guy, I frequently use the 70-200L f/2.8 (even with a 1.4x attached) as a walk-around lens. The result is that I have myself removed from the subject(s), not only optically but also physically to the point of having lost intimacy with my subjects, thus preventing the kind of photography I admire and am so hungry for.

Message edited by author 2006-02-18 13:20:08.
02/18/2006 03:23:54 PM · #15
the new Sigma 17-70 looks good too.
//www.pbase.com/fstopjojo/17701785
02/18/2006 03:50:50 PM · #16
Thanks for the responses.

So now I'm wondering - better to have a faster lens with a bit less range (as you can move your body back a bit to get wider or move forward to get closer) rather than a broader focal range and slower apertures.
02/20/2006 02:24:09 AM · #17
Originally posted by AutumnCat:

Thanks for the responses.

So now I'm wondering - better to have a faster lens with a bit less range (as you can move your body back a bit to get wider or move forward to get closer) rather than a broader focal range and slower apertures.


Yes, I'd agree. Then again, rather than have a 17-85IS, it's probably better to get something like a 17-35 f2.8-4 or a 17-50 f2.8 (new from Tamron) and a midrange zoom.

I think for walking around, an ultrawide like a Sigma 10-20 and a Sigma 24-70 EX would be the best combo. I'm not a fan of 17-40mm range for cropped sensors, it's just not wide enough. If you just want one lens, then a 17-85 or a 17-70 would do nicely. All depends on what you want.
I'm a big fan of the idea of getting an ultrawide for landscape and city scape. A normal range zoom for some walking around and portraits from close up. And lastly a 70-200 or a supertele zoom for sports, portraits, or animals (with the supertele zoom).
02/20/2006 02:43:54 AM · #18
I have the Sigma 18-200, which is just amazing as far as range for a walk around & price, currently around $320 on pricegrabber.com. Check some of the photos here.

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/378/thumb/230943.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_challenge/378/thumb/230943.jpg', '/') + 1) . 'zoomed to 200mm.

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The only downside to thisw lense is that it is f3.5-6.3, which is pretty slow for handheld shots in lowlight, even using ISO 800 or 1600. I really like the lense, but am currently looking for something that will be a better shooter for lowlight.

One last thought, the long zoom is a real plus for taking candids.
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