Any Canon kit 18-55 IS users considering upgrading to EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 ?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by mtbdudex, Jul 8, 2010.

  1. mtbdudex macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #1
    With $100 rebate expiring on 7/10, and considering my 8+ month usage of current kit 18-55 IS, I'm seriously considering upgrading to the EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS.
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/647013-USA/Canon_3560B002_EF_S_15_85mm_f_3_5_5_6_IS.html

    Any other crop Canon users considering same?
    The $620 price is very attractive, I looked at the 17-55 2.8, but $1.1k is outta budget, while the 24-70 2.8 L and/or 24-105 4 L are not wide enough for my crop T1i.

    Seems the reviews of the new EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS over the older Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 are very favorable http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-S-15-85mm-f-3.5-5.6-IS-USM-Lens-Review.aspx

    This would give me good decent glass for the low zoom, and I'll keep using my kit 55-250 IS until I pony up for the 100-400 L.
    (I'm on the 1 lens/year upgrade allowance from my wife )

    My B&H shopping cart has the lens + hood, I'll sleep on this and do the purchase tomorrow.

    Thoughts/feedback from others appreciated.
    Once I do get the new lens I'll take some A vs B shots to see for myself the PQ improvement, and share them here.
     
  2. madmaxmedia macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #2
    This seems like a real winner! Ring USM, highly regarded IQ...

    I say go for it. Sounds like you have a 'real world' budget, and the extra speed of the 17-55 isn't worth it. If you've been happy with the speed of the kit lens, then the 15-85 should work great for you.

    Also, I just briefly checked DPReview and it seems like a highly regarded lens- that glowing review shouldn't be an anomaly.
     
  3. adpeace macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2008
    #3
    Recommended!

    I was in the same situation, using the 18-55 kit lens on a 450D, and made the upgrade recently. It is definitely nice to have a little wider range on the zoom for a walk-about lens, and the quality so far seems great. The full-time manual focus is handy and can be used when perfecting small DoF shots, and the other features make the lens nicer to use than the kit lens. It is of course both significantly heavier and larger, though handling of the smaller body for me still seems OK. Overall, I'd definitely recommend the upgrade.
     
  4. Amasashi macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    #4
    I was in the same boat as you awhile back. I upgraded from a Rebel to a 50D but was still using the 18-55 kit lens from my Rebel. I never really liked that the Toys R Us plastic feel of that lens, especially on a 50D, so I was looking to upgrade it to either a 17-55 f/2.8 or a 17-85 f/4-5.6 to use as a general purpose zoom.

    In the end, I went with the 17-85, mainly I felt that the f/2.8 on a mid-range zoom wasn't worth the extra money. I'm going to use the money I saved for either a 28 f/1.8 or 50 f/1.4, which are faster lenses, have better IQ, and are compatible with full-frame cameras should I decide to upgrade in the future.

    As for the 17-85, it's a great lens. Same functionality as the kit 18-55, only with more reach and USM focusing. Oh yeah, and it's slightly heavier, but not by much :)
     
  5. Amasashi macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    #5
    Oops, I meant 15-85, not 17-85. I don't why I kept typing that!

    But yeah, just to clarify, it's 15-85!
     
  6. gnd macrumors 6502a

    gnd

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    At my cat's house
    #6
    I know you're looking at Canon lenses only but I'd still like to suggest the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 (it's currently ~460$ on Amazon). It's an amazingly sharp lens, I would dare to say that sharpness-wise it's on par with the Canon 17-55mm f/2.8.
     
  7. jeremy h macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    I know you've said the 17-55 is out of budget (and I hate to complicate things) but I've just bought one. (Felt a bit sick over the cost and was nervous that I was buying a very 'overpriced kit lens') but wow! I'm hugely impressed with it. I've found the combination of the IS and 2.8 brilliant for indoor pics (of the kids). (I've got a 30mm 1.4 sigma which is probably not going to get a lot of use now.) I'm not a great photographer but it really flatters my ability. (You couldn't get your wife to buy something expensive for herself and increase your 'allowance'?)
     
  8. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #8
    Good point, I'll consider the Tamron/Sigma comparable lens in this prior to buying.....more info, more analysis, more time.....but worthwhile, thx

    I got my wife a Vita-mix blender 6 weeks back! Never in my life did I think I'd spend $600 for a blender (with a few goodies also).
    http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.aspx?Prodid=11319311
    But, my other hobby, MTB riding, I "spent" $450 by a brain lapse....I had my bike on my roof rack, the wife/kids were spending overnighter at grandmas, after evening MTB ride and coming home open garage, see open spot for parking (usually park outside), "hey, I can park inside tonignt...crash".
    The LH bar end crashed into the wood header of the garage, and then the roof rack bars plain sheared at all 4 ends and the whole thing came crashing backward.
    Believe it or not, besides the bike seat appears no other bike damage.....
    [​IMG]


    See that mark up on the wood? Crash!!! LH Bar end slammed right there.
    You can see the roof rack cross bars sheared at each end. Very lucky the bike did not break the back window glass.
    The top of the hatchback got dented pretty badly.
    [​IMG]


    Big dent in top of hatchback, $250 deductible on company lease vehicle.....ugh....money I'd rather use on family stuff!!
    (in this case, subtract from lens budget, my fault)
    [​IMG]

    The seat broke off its rails upon falling down, I did mini test ride in driveway and front forks appear ok, all shifters/brake levers work, etc. $100 for new bike seat.
    [​IMG]

    I can sorta "laugh" at this 2 weeks later, and when posted in my MTB forum http://mmba.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=98178&p=658005#p658005 got quite a few stories from fellow bikers on their mishaps - eased the pain a little.
     
  9. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #9
    Other point: For crop camera this lens seems near ideal walk around lens for what we do as family, realizing there is no 100% solution.
    We just came back from NYC / Ocean City NJ vacation. I brought my camera bag with the Canon lens kit 18-55 IS / 55-250 IS and the 1.4 50mm prime.
    Well, going into NYC with 3 kids/etc I put the kit 18-55 IS on and that work so well for most shots, at times I was lacking reach, the 85 end of the 15-85 lens would have came in perfect for those 5% of shots.
     
  10. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #10
    Well;
    Now I'm doing want others have done during their lens shopping...comparing more and more lens and having ...doubts...well second and third thoughts.
    It's good to re-assess why you are buying before spending $, thx for making my brain think this early.

    Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II VC LD Aspherical (IF) Lens
    ,http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...&sku=652136&is=USA&si=rev#anchorToReadReviews
    and the Sigma http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/670047-REG/Sigma_668101_17_70mm_F2_8_4_DC_Macro.html
    Analysis 101:
    -They all have stabilization, "better glass" than my kit 18-55, similar weight (3x heavier than 7.1 oz kit lens)

    Canon 15-85: ($620 everywhere via rebate)
    Widest and biggest reach, 20.3 oz, f stop 3.5 - 5.5 limits brokeh ability

    Tamron 17-50: ($649@ Amazon)
    Constant 2.8, 20.1 oz; great for brokeh, losing the higher zoom limits this as single walk around lens

    Sigma 17-70: ($449 @ Amazon)
    18.9 oz, "lower" f stop 2.8 - 4 than Canon, higher zoom than Tamron though not as high as Canon

    Summary via specs (these 3):
    -Canon best walk around
    -Tamron constant f 2.8 very appealing, this lens probably more competes with the canon equiv 17-55 2.8
    -Sigma seems nice mix, low f stop and upper 70mm reach appealing.


    Again, for a family lens, used by me and my wife for our various activities, the longer reach is desirable for a single lens. If I was really into constant 2.8 for brokeh then I'd look at the 28-70 Canon and shift mindset, but that loses the wide end for a crop camera.....so back to having 17mm as wide...I'm debating Canon vs Sigma.....Not sure the sigma lens PQ, I'm sure its better than the kit 18-55 but compared to Canon ?
     
  11. madmaxmedia macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #11
    As a family lens, how much do you shoot indoors and in the 'golden' hour?

    My general lens is a Canon 50mm f/1.8, and I'm constantly pushing 1.8 and ISO 400/800.

    Actually, if you don't own the 50mm f/1.8 I would recommend it in addition to whatever lens you buy- great as a candid portrait lens and for bokeh. It's not known for great bokeh but hey it's $100 and fast and sharp (probably as sharp as all these zooms.)

    You could then pair the Canon 15-85 with the 50mm so you'd also have a fast lens when you need it.
     
  12. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #12
    Lots of family activities are indoors; bday parties, church stuff, etc.

    I have the Canon f1.4 50mm prime already, IF I plan right even now I don't really miss the wider aperture shots.
    The big IF I don't forget, with all the craziness of those gatherings.
    I've used that 50 prime for indoor/low light and good brokeh.
    Just on a crop it is a little too tight for some larger group shots, in hindsight for a crop wish I'd gotten a 30mm Sigma instead (50mm ff equiv). There is only so far you can back up before hitting a wall/other people.

    Ha, after posting the above possible I should sell the 50mm Canon prime lens and get the 30mm Sigma prime....maybe later.
     
  13. madmaxmedia macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #13
    If you already have the Canon 50mm f/1.4, then the 15-85 seems like the no-brainer choice for you.

    The Tamron looks nice but doesn't have the reach you're looking for.
     
  14. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #14
    From what I've read, the Tamron with VC won't hold a candle to the Canon in sharpness and image quality... it's not up to the same standard as it's almost legendary predecessor without VC. (Link)

    I don't know anything about the Sigma. (Where's Toxic when you need him!?)

    If you are on a budget and the 15-85 fits within it, then it's a no-brainer in my mind. If you really want f2.8 in a zoom, you need to buck-up for the EFS 17-55 f2.8 IS USM... otherwise use your 50mm prime to complement the 15-85.
     
  15. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #15
    VirtualRain;
    side discussion - a few months back at work I was in a big exec meeting discussing some projects underachievement status and used "buck up" describing how the people would need to do what was needed and that was that.....everyone got it.
    I'm 48, so guessing you are similiar age.....I had not planned on saying "buck up" it just flowed out during dynamic dialoge. Afterward a few people said been a long time since they heard that phrase but liked the usage.
    (did Richie Cunningham use that on the TV show Happy Days?)

    Having 2.8 constant aperture zoom is not on my must list for this lens, so guess I'm going with the 15-85..or the Sigma 17-70..thx for advice and giving me a "buck up" chuckle.

    some Sigma 17-70 reviews http://xploit3d.com/blog/?p=128 and
    http://www.reviewroot.com/index.php?subject=Sigma_17-70mm_F2.8-4_DC_Macro_OS_HSM&page=show

    online reviews are nice, better is feedback from the regulars here, you guys/gals steer me pretty good always.
     
  16. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #16
    Whew;
    I went to order and the B&H website was "down", they had some note posted on their website this morning
    So I went about my day with family stuff, and totally forgot about this until I woke up by chance at 11:40pm EDT, and quickly placed my order just at 11:52pm EDT, if 8 minutes later and no saving $100.
    (I just got the rebate)

    Lens should be here by Thursday, besides the 50mm f1.4 prime this is my first "serious" upgrade over the kit lens, thx for feedback.
     
  17. madmaxmedia macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #17
    Too bad about missing the rebate, I think the lens should still be nice though! Let us know.

    If you need to unload the 18-55, let me know. I've been thinking about finding one on EBay.

    Cheers
     
  18. mtbdudex thread starter macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #18
    My post mis-leading, I just got the rebate within 8 minutes! (edited it)

    For now, I'll "keep" the 18-55 kit IS, it's a great back-up lens, and frankly if I want my kids to use the DSLR for shooting I'd put that lens on it, you can guess why.
     
  19. madmaxmedia macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #19
    LOL, I've bought the Canon 50mm f/1.8 on 3 separate occasions, you can guess why.

    Lucky it wasn't the f/1.4...
     
  20. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #20
    LOL... I didn't realize it was an archaic term! :D I'm 42 so perhaps that's it! ;)

    Glad you got the lens... a friend of mine has it and it's pretty amazing.

    Cheers!
     

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