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Old Feb 21, 2011, 9:58 PM   #1
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Default 24-105mm L or not...

I must have "L"itis or something, but I can't help thinking that the stars will align for my photography when I get an L series lens.

I shoot with the kit 18-55mm IS lens now. I realize that the 24-105mm L covers a different focal range, but where they overlap, what will the difference in the photos be? Technically, I know that I gain a stop at 55mm with the L, but what of the quality of the photos, in terms of detail, color, noise, etc.

Thanks for the help!

Jim
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Old Feb 21, 2011, 11:18 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iowa_jim View Post
I must have "L"itis or something, but I can't help thinking that the stars will align for my photography when I get an L series lens.

I shoot with the kit 18-55mm IS lens now. I realize that the 24-105mm L covers a different focal range, but where they overlap, what will the difference in the photos be? Technically, I know that I gain a stop at 55mm with the L, but what of the quality of the photos, in terms of detail, color, noise, etc.

Thanks for the help!

Jim
Yes, the "L"itis! ... I was bitten by it and blissfully stay infected till date
Coming to your question ... in terms of quality, detail, color, noise etc there is a massive difference ... I cannot begin to tell you what a magnificant lens 24-105 L lens is ... in comparison the 18-55 IS kit lens is just a toy ... you will fall in love the moment you hold 24-105 L IS in your hands ... I will try to dig some photos taken with the 18-55 kits lens and 24-105 L IS lens, (photos taken by my 9 year old son ... just to give you a feel of the difference in quality of the images even in untrained hands) ... but you'll have to give me a day or two to dig those photos as I'm currently offshore and will have to get back home either tomorrow or the day after (the weather is rough so I can't leave the rig, until it calms down and the first chopper starts flying...even then I'm on a wait list ... so I've got plenty of time to surf the forum as I'm doing nothing else, just waiting patiently).
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Old Feb 21, 2011, 11:34 PM   #3
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On the 1.6x crop sensor the 17-55 IS will make better sense compared to the 24-105. 24-105 and 5D make the best pair.

I will avoid the 24-105 since its not too wide at the wide end and it will never be your walk around lens where one mostly needs the wide angle.

The alternatives include 17-55 IS (Which is built like an L lens but being a spe******ed lens for the cropped sensors its not given the term L).
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 12:42 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by nymphetamine View Post
I will avoid the 24-105 since its not too wide at the wide end and it will never be your walk around lens where one mostly needs the wide angle.
I respectfully disagree ... 24mm even on a cropped frame is wide enough for general "walk around" purposes (unless one requires it for moderate architectural photos or of buildings from a close range etc), I regularly take group photos (consisting around 25-50 people, in two to three rows), from a distance of around 18 feet in my office, also my family photos (we are 5 of us) from a distance of around 6 feet ... 24mm frames my entire 8 seater dinning table from a distance of around 8 feet.
Last August I was in UK and 24-105 was used for 90% of my entire 3 week holiday and never felt 24mm was not wide enough. On my 7D the 24mm, of 24-105 L IS lens, for some reason is wider then the 24mm on the 17-55 kit lens.
One and a half year ago I used to have Sigma 10-20mm & 17-50 f/2.8 lenses which I sold for Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 & Canon EF 24-105 L IS lenses (I also had the 17-55 IS kit lens but never used it after I got 24-105 L) ... as much as I like my tokina 11-16mm I hardly ever used it so I sold it, to add to my 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II lens fund, around 4 months ago and never really missed its focal length ... but the 24-105 L stays on my camera all the time.
Agreed that EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS lens has higher build quality then any Canon EF-S lenses but it is definately not as good a build quality as 24-105 f/4 IS L lens.
Also, the EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 does not come with a lens hood and can only be used on Canon APS-C camers whereas EF 24-105 L comes with a hood and can be used on all the Canon cameras
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 1:00 AM   #5
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the 24-105 would be a VERY useful all-round lens even on a crop body. sure, it's 'only' 38mm at the wide end on an APS-c body, but it's almost 170mm at the other end... a very useful range! if you want really wide-angle images from a crop camera, you're going to need something wider than the 24, but unless you shoot mostly landscapes, the 24-105 will be an excellent all-around lens.

by comparison, the 18-55 kit lens is a paperweight in terms of performance... you'll be amazed at how much sharper and clearer your images will be, especially in the corners. remember, the 24-105 is designed for FF bodies, and with a 1.6x crop body, you're only using about the middle 60% of the image circle, so there is ZERO softness in the corners; you'll get sharp, clean images even at wider apertures, which is something th 18-55 just won't do.

noise isn't a function of your lens, so there won't be any difference in that regard. but you will see sharper details, and better contrast with the "L".
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 1:14 AM   #6
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Another thing I forgot to add is that, both EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS lens & EF 24-104 f/4 L IS lenses cost the same money.
But the 17-55 feels a bit "plasticy" (especially the lens barrel) and does not have weather sealing, whereas 24-105 L IS lens has superior metal lens barrel and is weather sealed.
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 6:51 AM   #7
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Thanks for all your comments so far (and please keep them coming!). I realize I will loose the 27-36mm equivalent range with this move. On the plus side, I will gain the full portrait range of 80-120mm. My primary concern is in what I will see in print or on screen with the move to an "L". People have commented favorably about the new kit lens, yet speak so admirably about the L series lenses, leaving me to wonder what I am missing, if anything, with the kit lens.

And in the long term I can see a 5DIII in my hands (when does the 5DIV come out? LOL).
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 6:58 AM   #8
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several years ago when I went from the 28-135 to the 24-105 as my walk-around, the biggest difference to me was the POP in my people photos. Occasionally I would get a photo that popped with the 28-135, but every one (that I didn't screw up) out of the 24-105 had that POP. It's pretty good at f4, but I tend to shoot it at f6.3 quite a bit where it is amazingly sharp.
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 9:17 AM   #9
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IMHO: that 24-105 is a great all around lens!

Thke a look and compare images people have done with the EF 24-105
http://www.flickriver.com/lenses/can...105mmf4lisusm/

and the EF-s 18-55
http://www.flickriver.com/lenses/can...1855mmf3556is/

and the EF-s 17-55
http://www.flickriver.com/lenses/can...755mmf28isusm/

(got that great link from aladyfourty, you can even narrow down the search by camera body & lens type)
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Old Feb 22, 2011, 10:16 AM   #10
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The 24-105 L is my standard walkaround lens on my 7D. Magnificent image quality.
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