canon 17-40 review

Canon EF 17-40mm f / 4L USM review

The Canon EF 17-40mm f / 4L USM is a very good choice if you need a wide angle.

Focal length

Canon EF 17-40mm f / 4L USM reviewThe main feature of 17-40mm is focal length. Unlike 24-70mm, there is a really wide angle here. This lens is more specific because less suitable for reporting and working with people. His prerogative is photography of interiors, landscapes, travel.

By the way, I would boldly call this model versatile full frame travel zoom lens... It is small, lightweight and great for focusing on such a role.

For 5 years at my disposal Samyang 14mm f2.8 and about 15 years old Canon 24-70 f2.8L (first first version, later second). I can say that 17mm is very close to 14mm. If you do not deal with interiors, such a difference will not play a role and it is better to take a zoom of 17-40mm, because it is more functional.

In interior photography, 17mm does not replace 14mm, but complements it.14mm vs 17mmI sometimes missed focal lengths between 14mm and 24mm, which prompted this purchase.14mm vs 24mm

For shooting interiors a combination of 14mm + 17-40mm is ideal. In all other directions, 17-40mm would be a more interesting choice.

For example, at weddings Canon EF 17-40mm f / 4L will perfectly replace the bunch of fixes 14mm + 35mm, which I wrote about in article on choosing optics for wedding photography.

An important point is an excellent full frame width, but a useless lens for Canon camera crop... For crop 1.6, you need to buy Canon 17-55mm f2.8 (as a standard) or Canon 10-18mm f4.5-5.6 STM (as shirik), but 17-40 f4L - neither here nor there.

Design features

The lightweight metal body offers the advantages of compactness and reliability. My second-hand copy was bought from a person who also bought it not new. Nevertheless, the condition is excellent.

Canon EF 17-40mm f / 4L USM + canon 5d mark iii

The zoom ring rotates very easily, which cannot be said about the focus ring, which is hardly required in practice. the wide angle catches hares very well both in the sun and indoors.


It's sharp enough that you don't think about it. Yes, soapy spots can be found in the extreme corners. But in real conditions, the detail will not cause any complaints. If subjectively compared in terms of sharpness, then it is in the middle between the sharper Samyang 14mm f2.8 and the less sharp Canon 16-35 f2.8L of the first version. Again, working out the details here is not a problem.

The color reproduction is juicy and with high micro-contrast, as you would expect from an Elka. Naturally, the picture is generally darker than on lenses with an aperture of f2.8. But if you're not comparing photos side-by-side, this won't be a problem.

Slight distortion and vignetting are present. They are treated quickly and painlessly with profile correction.


Among Canon lenses with similar focal lengths, this model is ideal in terms of price / quality / size ratio.

Next I would consider the Canon 16-35 f4L IS. It's even sharper and more importantly has a stabilizer. A stabilizer for a landscape lens is more important because lets you shoot handheld where f2.8 won't help you.

If we talk about the Canon 16-35 f2.8L I, II, III line, I would look at the second version as more adequate in terms of price and quality. The first is very average in sharpness, and the third is exorbitantly expensive. As for me, at such focal lengths f2.8 is not a priority anyway.

There are tons of third party lenses in this focal length range. But no matter how much I look at them, they lose to my native Canon either in image quality or in price.

A small, inexpensive and yet very high quality lens is the Canon 17-40 f4L. Further, there will be compromises on certain parameters.

See more in my video review:

Tamron AF 28-75mm f / 2.8 SP XR Di LD Aspherical IF review

Even before I took this lens in my hands, I was skeptical. This is a budget zoom that captivates with aperture and full frame use.

New Tamron AF 28-75mm f / 2.8 it will cost you $ 400. You can find used ones for around $ 200, which looks very tempting. I say right away that I consider this a waste of money.

I developed a prejudiced attitude towards Tamrons when I was given the initial wedding photos with Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 for processing several years ago. Green faces when shooting indoors and full soap in group portraits (to the point that the faces were barely distinguishable) in the Central Registry Office left an indelible impression of such "optics".

Tamron AF 28-75mm f 2.8 SP XR Di LD Aspherical IFs as if it begs as a replacement for the native 24-70mm. Those who want to save money are attracted by the f2.8 at a low price for such a zoom lens.

Tamron 28-75

Focal lengths 28-75mm suitable for full frame, but will be uncomfortable when cropped. However, on a full frame 28mm is not as interesting as 24mm.

I was given a second-hand version to test. I don't know how old this specimen is, but the quality of the case leaves much to be desired.

Zoom ring moves in jerks, despite the fact that the lens unit is relatively light inside. For comparison, my Canon 24-70mm f2.8L tightly zoomed due to the large weight of the internal elements. However, there are no backlashes and jumps. Tamron's zoom is jerky and there is a slight wobble of the zoom ring. The rubber band of the zoom ring lags behind the body - an unpleasant trifle. By the way, for more than 24 years of use, 70-10 have all the rubber bands in place. Also, Tamron has a tendency to arbitrarily extend the lens unit when the lens is tilted. The "lock" button especially does not insure against this, because fixes the lens only at 28mm and is inconveniently positioned.

The lens focuses slowly and loudly... I had a fairly short acquaintance with him, so I cannot say with certainty how he will behave in reporting conditions. But even during the day on the street when focusing on static objects, it slowed down.

Focus ring deserves a separate mention. Its stroke is as much as 45 degrees. This is the shortest focus ring travel I've ever seen. You cannot move the ring while autofocus is on. This could damage the focusing mechanism. It is extremely inconvenient to use it in manual mode. Even on Canon 50mm f1.8 the focus ring is better than here. Thus, this lens is simply contraindicated for videographers.

Image quality and sharpness

The sharpness, oddly enough, is not bad in the center. The edges are far behind. I tested this lens in parallel with Canon 50mm f1.8 STM and fifty was just razor sharp by comparison. Of course, you will think that I am comparing zoom and fixed, which is incorrect. The fact is that it is better to take a couple of budget fixes (for example, for this amount you can buy an old canon 24mm f2.8 and / or 50mm f1.8 stm).

Test frames link.

They say there is a wide range of quality among these lenses. Maybe someone comes across sharper examples. I am not tempted to participate in lotteries when buying a working tool.

Boke suitable. Blurring is quite normal.

bokeh example on tamron 28-75mm

Tamron AF 28-75mm f / 2.8 SP XR Di LD Aspherical IF decoding:

tamron 28-75 transcript

The presence of so many letters in the name does not save this poor-quality piece of glass.


The native alternative is Canon 24-70 f2.8L costs 3 times more than the Tamron AF 28-75mm f2.8. The difference is significant. The fact is that buying Tamron is just a waste of money. Better not to buy a zoom at all than this.

Here I want to make a small lyrical digression on the topic why am I against cheap zooms... Two inexpensive high-aperture fixtures can be remove corporate or any other reportage for which such zooms are usually taken. Of course, this is not so convenient. Discomfort due to changing lenses will be present. But the quality will be heaven and earth by comparison. It turns out that by purchasing such a lens, the photographer wants to make his work inexpensively easier. True, the terrible autofocus performance and inconvenient zoom ring will undermine the desire to simplify life.

If your budget is small and you want a zoom, buy Canon 24-85mm f3.5-4.5 USM... It is even cheaper and will work better. Yes, it is less fast. But it has a normal design, fast and quiet focusing, nice zoom and focus rings. This lens is perfect for beginner photographers and videographers. And for the luminosity, it is worth buying a banal fifty dollars.

Related articles: Why should a good photographer have a good lens?

Tamron 28-70mm f2.8 video review:

Video review of the cropped analogue - Tamron 17-50mm f2.8:

PS A photographer I know asked me if Canon is paying me to praise their lenses? Unfortunately no. All lenses I buy, rent or borrow from friends. For over 10 years I have been shooting with Canon and I deliberately praise this particular brand. I can't say anything bad about Nikon. But I am definitely not happy with Sigma (which is Art, which is not Art), Tamron and other junk sold with an eye to people who want to get more for less money. It doesn't work that way. A good product is always worth the money. This applies to both the technique and the cost of the photographer's services.

Which lens to choose for a full frame?

If a photographer is asking such a question, then most likely he has little experience so far. Therefore, we will proceed from the fact that a lens is needed for all occasions. But absolutely universal lenses do not exist. Even very expensive ones.

For example, if a lens boasts a perfect picture, it will fixed lens... The downside will be less functionality and convenience. When we buy a zoom, we always sacrifice aperture and image quality to a certain extent. In order to understand what is more important for a particular photographer, you need to gain experience in shooting. And it's better to start with zooms, tk. they provide an opportunity to compare and feel different focal lengths.

Canon EF 24-85mm f3.5-4.5 USM - overview

This is the lens I would recommend starting with. First, it is very inexpensive. Its price / quality ratio is very good. It is sharp, compact, and offers a very convenient range of focal lengths over a full frame. This is exactly the model with which it is good to start. And only then it will be possible to determine which focal optics are more in demand and which more serious optics are worth buying.

Someone may ask why not take the first Canon EF 24-105 f4L IS? The fact is that the Canon 24-105 f4L IS is a rather mediocre lens in its class. He does not give bokeh, the aperture is low, the image is boring. Of course, it will be better than Canon EF 24-85 f3.5-4.5 USM, but the price is several times higher. For a trial to decide, it is better to start with a more budgetary model. Then you can already understand for yourself whether it is worth taking Canon EF 24-70 f2.8L or it is better to switch to fixes. Or maybe even leave the Canon EF 24-85 f3.5-4.5 USM for reporting, and shoot for fifty dollars for creativity, which will be discussed later.

Canon EF 50mm f1.4 USM - overview

50mm full frame is a pretty comfortable focal length. In particular, for work in the studio... But it's not only that. Canon 50mm f1.4 is a very fast lens, but it costs little money. This lens, I believe, should be in any photographer's kit. Excellent image quality, remarkable bokeh and compact dimensions are the main characteristics of Canon fifty dollars.

Never drop Canon 50mm f1.4. This lens is very fragile. Its focusing mechanism is very easy to damage. A ремонт it can cost you half the cost of the lens.

full frame lensesTotal

Canon 50mm f1.4 paired with Canon 24-85mm f3.5-4.5 USM will open up a huge scope for the photographer for a creative work for very little money. This is where I would advise you to start mastering the full frame.

In addition. If you buy a Canon camera, my big advice is: buy Canon lenses too. Only they have excellent color rendition and no problems with autofocus. Sigma, Tamron, Tokina - it's all from the evil one. Although I am satisfied Samyang 14mm f2.8 in terms of sharpness, but its color fidelity doesn't match Canon's native lenses.