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Thread: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

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    whited3's Avatar
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    Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Hi,

    Looking to step up in lens quality for my 500D. I have a Sigma 10-20 3.5 for landscapes and am considering the Canon 24-105 F4 to fill the spot above the Sigma and replace, in part, the kit 18-200mm that came with the camera. Could anyone recommend an alternative of similar or better quality?

    Cheers

    PS just realised I've put this in the wrong forum
    Last edited by whited3; 24th December 2010 at 06:50 AM.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by whited3 View Post
    Hi,
    PS just realised I've put this in the wrong forum
    Don't worry. I've just moved it into the right place.

    As well as any comments that members post up here, have you looked at other discussions that have been held about lenses?

    If not, then hit 'Advanced Search' up towards the top right of the page and, once in there, insert 'lenses' in Tags. That will give you a list of previous threads, some of which you might find useful.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Mark

    My own contribution to answering your question is that in considering the 24 - 105 L you're pretty much looking at the top of the tree already. I don't think you're going to find many suggestions that there's anything else of 'similar or better quality'.

    If that is the sort of zoom range you want, then you've already hit the bullseye, in my opinion. You're only debate (to have with yourself) is then - Is that the zoom range I want? Am I okay with the f4, or do I want faster? Would the 24-70 L f2.8 (with no IS, but the rumour mill says there will be one soon) give me more or less options? etc.

    You may well have asked and answered all these questions already. If so, enjoy the 24-105 when you get it.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Thanks Donald. Yes, faster would be good but everything (as always) has to be in budget So the while f2.8 would be lovely, the additional cost would have to be deducted from my budget for the next lens I want, being a 70-300mm or some such

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by whited3 View Post
    Hi,

    Looking to step up in lens quality for my 500D. I have a Sigma 10-20 3.5 for landscapes and am considering the Canon 24-105 F4 to fill the spot above the Sigma and replace, in part, the kit 18-200mm that came with the camera. Could anyone recommend an alternative of similar or better quality?

    Cheers

    PS just realised I've put this in the wrong forum
    Hi Mark

    Looks like we have very similar tastes in cameras and lenses. I have the 500D with the 18-200mm lens. I have also recently bought the 24-105. Since I bought it, I've been using it as my out and about lens. I'm very happy with the purchase. I haven't had any problems with the f4 being too slow. Hope this helps.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Thanks Raylee

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    I suppose the only alternative might be the 70-200 IS but that would tend to still leave a bit of a gap at the lower end and you might not need to go as large as 200 mm.

    I purchased a 24-105 to replace my 28-135 IS (which is an excellent mid price lens) and found that the 24-105 is certainly a stronger construction. It holds sharpness towards the lens edges a lot better and also retains more detail towards the extreme ends of the contrast range.

    But at the centre, the 28-135 is equally sharp.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    I bought a 24-105L for my XT/350D, and enjoyed it a lot, but I did discover that when people said, "It's too long on a crop" they weren't completely wrong, even though I tend to shoot long. If you plan on doing landscape/architecture shooting with it, which the slower max. aperture and IS make it very well suited for, you should probably put it on a full frame. There's a reason it's the 5D's kit lens. Also consider whether 20-24mm is a good "breakover" point for you.

    The EF 17-40 f/4L USM and the EF 24-70 f/2.8L USM are the two lenses that are most often considered along with the 24-105L when making a lens purchase. The 17-40 is not stabilized, but it is the same speed and goes much wider, and is much less expensive. If you want a landscape lens, this one may be a better choice. The 24-70 is also not stabilized, more expensive, shorter, and bigger, but it has f/2.8 as a max. aperture, so for available light shooting and moving subjects, it's likely to be a better lens (which is why it's a staple of wedding photographers and portrait shooters).

    A third alternative to consider is the crop body "equivalent" of the 24-105, which is the new EF-S 15-85 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM. It's expensive ($700, I think) and slower. But it's stabilized. It actually covers a wider range than the 24-105 equivalently does on a full frame (i.e., 15-85*1.6 => 24-136), and it has UD and aspherical elements. It's just that being an EF-S, it won't be labeled as an L. It's substantially sharper than the EF-S 17-85 IS USM it replaced. To me, this is the one if you want a great travel/walkaround lens that does wide to short telephoto. There's also the EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS USM, but that may be less range and more money than you want to spend on an EF-S lens, if you plan on going full frame in the future.

    You may also want to consider if you're going to be adding a 70-300, 70-200L or 100-400L to the arsenal. The 105 end of the 24-105 may not really be as necessary as you think it is, now.
    Last edited by inkista; 24th December 2010 at 08:30 PM.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Hi Mark,

    Sorry if I've missed this somewhere, but what is it about the 18-200 that you feel may warrent it being replaced?

    PS: Kathy - excellent post; I'd struggle to add anything to it! (although having just said that, I shot a lot of landscape with a EF 24-70mm F2.8L USM on a 20D, and didn't find the 24mm end on a crop-factor camera particularly limiting) (plus, Mark already has something wider).

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by inkista View Post
    A third alternative to consider is the crop body "equivalent" of the 24-105, which is the new EF-S 15-85 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM. It's expensive ($700, I think) and slower. But it's stabilized. It actually covers a wider range than the 24-105 equivalently does on a full frame (i.e., 15-85*1.6 => 24-136), and it has UD and aspherical elements. It's just that being an EF-S, it won't be labeled as an L. It's substantially sharper than the EF-S 17-85 IS USM it replaced. To me, this is the one if you want a great travel/walkaround lens that does wide to short telephoto.
    Thanks Kathy. Hadn't considered this lens and will take a look at it.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Sorry if I've missed this somewhere, but what is it about the 18-200 that you feel may warrent it being replaced?
    Sounds stupid but the big thing I hate about it is that the lens will extend under it's own weight if held below the horizontal. Also, I find 200mm not long enough so where I want to get to is:

    Sigma 10-20mm for land/city scapes (Which I already have, and love)
    Canon 24-105 as a walk around, daily lens.
    Canon 70-300 (maybe) for telephoto work. I don't want anything bigger (of heavier) to lug around.
    Maybe an extender as well.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Is the new Canon 70-300 L IS available yet, Mark? It is going to be expensive though.

    I have used the 'basic' Canon 70-300 IS for a few years and find it to be an adequate mid price lens; although it obviously can't directly compete against a more expensive L series alternative.

    Recently I replaced (but still have) my 70-300 with the Canon 70-200 IS L (the 'cheapie' not the excessively priced 2.8 version) which is a much stronger construction and a little bit sharper than the 70-300; but around twice the price.

    I do often miss the area between 200 and 300 although this gets covered by my Sigma 150-500 which, under ideal conditions, produces surprising good results for such a large lens. But, when a decent tripod is also included, my backpack does tend to slow me down on those longer walks.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post
    Is the new Canon 70-300 L IS available yet, Mark? It is going to be expensive though.
    AUD$1680 from DWI
    http://www.dwidigitalcameras.com.au/...idProduct=3080

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by whited3 View Post
    Sounds stupid but the big thing I hate about it is that the lens will extend under it's own weight if held below the horizontal.
    Hate to tell you this, but I hate this about my 24-105L, too. It really needs a zoom lock. Either that, or I need to stop zooming so much. Mine definitely suffers from zoom creep when it's been hanging at my side; it's pretty common with this lens.

    Canon 70-300 (maybe) for telephoto work. I don't want anything bigger (of heavier) to lug around.
    Maybe an extender as well.
    One thing, an extender and an f/5.6 lens can be a very tricky combination if you need autofocus. Most of the Canon bodies stop attempting autofocus if the maximum aperture of a lens reaches f/8 (I think some of the 1 series can still autofocus at f/8, but don't quote me). And adding a 1.4x tc adds one stop to the max. aperture, a 2x tc adds two stops. So your 70-300, at the 300 end will become an f/8 or an f/11 lens with a 1.4x or 2x tc, respectively. If you use a Canon tc, you'll lose autofocus. If you use a Canon tc and tape over the contacts, you'll get wonky autofocus. If you use a 3rd-party non-reporting tc, you'll get less but still wonky autofocus. Or, at least, that's been my experience with a 1.4x non-pro Tamron tc and the dirt-cheap 75-300 III (non-USM, non-IS version). On my XT, I was manually focusing faster than that combo could lock onto something.

    On my 50D, with that same tc and the 400/5.6L USM prime lens, I can autofocus, but there is occasional "chattering" as the lens has a little difficulty locking, and it's slower than the bare lens can achieve.

    TCs also tend to degrade lens performance, and the general wisdom is that primes take tcs better than zooms. Which is why my jaw is scraping the ground at the results folks are getting out of the EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM II and 2x tcs: it looks a lot like the 100-400L performance. None of the other 70-200Ls have ever come close.

    In short, wouldn't recommend slapping a tc onto the 70-300 IS or 70-300L IS (the 70-300L IS isn't as sharp as the 70-200/2.8 II, it's more on a par with the 100-400L, according to Roger Cicala at lensrentals.com).

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    The 17-55 IS USM is an excellent lens on a crop body and I used it as a walkaround lens for some time before I went FF. It isn't "L" labelled but is a really good performer and light to carry around as well.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by NigelD View Post
    The 17-55 IS USM is an excellent lens on a crop body and I used it as a walkaround lens for some time before I went FF. It isn't "L" labelled but is a really good performer and light to carry around as well.
    At the risk of sounding redundant (since I have posted these thoughts many times before) I absolutely love the combination of 17-55mm f/2.8 IS + 70-200mm f/4L IS lenses for general and travel photography. I tend to shoot 90-95% of my imagery with these two lenses on a pair of 1.6x bodies...

    If I were restricted to just two lenses; the 17-55mm + 70-200mm would be my choices. The 17mm is plenty wide enough for me in the vast majority of instances, since I tend to like longer focal lengths, and the 70-200mm f/4L IS takes over in the telephoto area where the 17-55mm falls short. I have great IS, IQ and fast A/F in both lenses and a constant f/2.8 aperture in my mid-range zoom. BTW: I don't really miss the 55mm to 70mm gap between these lenses...

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by inkista View Post

    A third alternative to consider is the crop body "equivalent" of the 24-105, which is the new EF-S 15-85 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM. It's expensive ($700, I think) and slower. But it's stabilized. It actually covers a wider range than the 24-105 equivalently does on a full frame (i.e., 15-85*1.6 => 24-136)
    Forgive me if I am being a bit pedantic but surely if the comparison is between the 15-85 and 24-105 then:

    - both have IS
    - both cover about the same range, just from different start points. The way it is being described may give the indication is that the 15-85 is a longer reach than the 24-105, whch is not so. - the 24-105 is the equivalent for the 1.6 crop to 38-168, which is also a wider range than the 15-85)

    Personally I have found that having a small overlap in lens range is easier to live with than none. I have 3 lens with my 50d, 17-40, 24-105, 70-200.

    Brian

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by Kentboy View Post
    The way it is being described may give the indication is that the 15-85 is a longer reach than the 24-105, whch is not so. -
    Brian

    Did you notice that Kathy took care to make the point that she was comparing the 15-85 on a crop factor body to the 24-105 on a full-frame body? Is she not correct in that case?
    Last edited by Donald; 7th January 2011 at 09:32 AM.

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    My apologies - I missed that little bit and came away with a totally different meaning. In my defense I have to plead that the context of the thread is abut crop bodies

    That said I am not sure why I would want to compare a lens on a 1.6 against another on a FF

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    Re: Alternative to CANON EF 24-105mm F4.0L IS USM

    Quote Originally Posted by inkista View Post
    Most of the Canon bodies stop attempting autofocus if the maximum aperture of a lens reaches f/8 (I think some of the 1 series can still autofocus at f/8, but don't quote me).
    Yes, 1D bodies are good for F8.

    TCs also tend to degrade lens performance, and the general wisdom is that primes take tcs better than zooms. Which is why my jaw is scraping the ground at the results folks are getting out of the EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS USM II and 2x tcs: it looks a lot like the 100-400L performance. None of the other 70-200Ls have ever come close.
    I noticed that it was a definate step-up from the old EF70-200 F/2.8L IS USM when using V2 TCs, although an EF2.0x on the original could still pretty much equal an EF100-400 from about F11 onwards. Looking forward to getting my V3 TCs which I'm told are optically even better.

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