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Old Jul 7, 2005, 9:42 AM   #1
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I'm about to purchase a Canon 20d, my first dSLR. I was surprised at the price difference between the two kit lenses, the EFS 18-55 and the 17-85 IS. The IS doesn't seem critical to me in a lens of this focal length. I'd like the longer focal length, but it's a big difference in price. Does anyone know if the optics are any better on the longer lens--enough to justify the $500 difference in cost? I know the 18-55 hasn't gotten great reviews.

Thanks for any advice.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 10:31 AM   #2
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I think the 18-55mm is adequate, and something to get started with. Its has one really good quality: its light and it does cover a good range.

Its worth getting, IMHO.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 10:39 AM   #3
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The 17-85 is a slightly longer and a bit sharper lens, but the major cause of the price increase is in the Image Stabilization that is in the 17-85 lens.

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Old Jul 7, 2005, 10:57 AM   #4
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save the $500 and buy a good tele or a fast prime..

$500 will go along way towards a canon 70-200L 4.0, sigma 70-200 2.8 ex, or sigma 100-300 4.0 ex..

it will also buy you a sigma 500 dg super flash plus an 85 1.8 prime...

or it will buy you a tokina 12-24 f4.0 super wide..
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 11:56 AM   #5
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The 17-85 IS is a superb everyday lens. Although initially skeptical about the value of IS, I am now a convert and own two Canon lenses with IS, the 17-85 and the 75-300 DO IS. The IS has made handheld shooting possible in places where a non-IS lens would be useless without a tripod. It does add cost, though.

I highly recommend the 17-85 over the 18-50 for your first lens because of its improved sharpness, more useful range, and the IS.

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Old Jul 7, 2005, 1:38 PM   #6
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The extra 500 is worth it for this lens. Its range is optimal for most everyday shooting.

Get it.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 1:52 PM   #7
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If you don't need IS the Sigma 18-125 is slightly more flexible and is quite economical too:
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