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Canon 17-40 L versus Sigma 10-24

Hi everyone. The title says it all. I want a decent wide angle lens for my Canon EOS 5D mk2 (Full Frame). I am interested in the above lenses but have heard good and bad comments about both. I just wondered what people's opinions were about which is the better lens? The main thing I am interested in is quality as either would be wide enough.
Keith Smile

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sherlob Plus
10 2.8k 126 United Kingdom
5 Nov 2013 9:56PM
Keith - you've a massive difference in focal length there. You have obviously considered how wide, but what the tele end - which would be most practical.

I haven't seen any reviews for the 10-24 on a full frame (in fact I didn't know it was compatible), but I suspect you'll have lots distortion! I get some distortion with the 17-40 but this is relatively easy to sort - especially in LR5. The build quality of the 17-40 is phenomenal. I've had mine for probably 6-7 years now. Its my main lens - being used for approx 90% of my photography. Its been used and abused e.g. out in all conditions, dropped, no UV filters etc, and its never missed a beat. Simply put - its built like a tank. In terms of photography gear - I bought mine second hand for just shy of £400, and its the single best purchase I've made in terms of gear.

stevie Plus
13 1.2k 2 United Kingdom
5 Nov 2013 9:59PM
You mean the Sigma 12-24? Or the Sigma 10-20?

Afraid no personal experience with the Sigmas. However, I've had the Canon 17-40 for years now and it's an excellent lens (at a relatively good price). It's been my main landscape lens and I won't be changing it in a hurry.
alansnap Plus
13 577 26 United Kingdom
5 Nov 2013 10:30PM
First principles. The 5D MkII is a full frame camera so the 10-20 won't fit as it's made for cropped sensor cameras. The 16-35mm Canon is the lens the pros use, but it comes at a price. I'm really happy with my 17-40, though there is noticeable distortion at the short end. That said it's manageable. Have a look at this . It shows what happens when you point this lens upwardsGrin. This photo shows what you get at the wide end with a little correction added. I think it's a fantastic lens.
6 Nov 2013 12:41AM
Sorry for confusion folk. Should read sigma 12-24mm Tongue
6 Nov 2013 12:54AM
Thanks for all the help. My thought was I have a Canon 24-105 L lens, 75-300 lens and 100mm L lens (macro). I was thinking the Sigma would give a better total focal length but reading the comments so far it's edging more towards Canon.
Thanks Alan for showing me the Liverpool Cathedral which I am local to and so I can relate to this image and I must say a fine image it is.
Thanks again everyone for taking the time to comment and sorry for the confusion over the sigma.
GlennH 11 1.9k 1 France
6 Nov 2013 2:07AM
I've used both lenses at different points. I'm pretty sure the Canon will give you a sharper image than the Sigma, though it's mushier than a lot of lenses around the edges if you scrutinise (or my copy was, at least). I don't know how meaningful these lens recommendations are, generally - at web sizes virtually everything looks the same. One good thing about an 'L' series is that it'll generally hold its value well - you can swap them around for very little financial loss.
pink Plus
13 3.8k 7 United Kingdom
6 Nov 2013 7:57AM
I've owned both lenses and still have the Canon, the Sigma (12-24) was (for me) a nightmare, the flare was unmanageable, and you do get the sun in the frame a lot with an extreme wide angle.
The biggest issue I had with the Sigma was not being able to fit filters to the front, I did try a Cokin Z Pro holder and some filters to suit but it was far from useable. For mainly this reason I sold it and bought the Canon 17-40, first impressions are good although it produces quite a lot of Chromatic Aberrations around the edges of the frame in contrasty lighting, this is easily corrected in ACR though but can be a nuisance.
I really wanted the 16-35 but it just seemed too expensive when compared to the 17-40, and I believe the Canon will hold its value better.
Horses for courses really, if you can accept the Sigma's shortcomings (Flare/No filters) then you do get another 2mm of wide to use, which can be dramatic!
Enjoy whatever you choose
derekhansen Plus
8 210 24 United Kingdom
6 Nov 2013 9:18AM
When I had cropped sensor cameras I used the Sigma 10-20 which was an excellent lens for the price. When I bought my 5D2 I also bought the 17-40L.
I echo the comments above. Yes it does produce chromatic abberation and can be a little soft at the edges but these can be managed/reduced in post processing and the clarity of the lens generally is superb. I know the 16-35L is a slightly better lens but its also a lot more expensive. It will be long time before I think about upgrading.
sherlob Plus
10 2.8k 126 United Kingdom
6 Nov 2013 12:34PM

Quote:I don't know how meaningful these lens recommendations are, generally - at web sizes virtually everything looks the same. One good thing about an 'L' series is that it'll generally hold its value well - you can swap them around for very little financial loss.

I tend to agree - but screen viewing is only one aspect of IQ (although I'm no fan of pixel peeping either). E.g. issues above also address build quality, handling, usability, and versatility.

GlennH 11 1.9k 1 France
6 Nov 2013 1:46PM

Quote: issues above also address build quality, handling, usability, and versatility.

Build quality and handling are the main reasons I regretted ditching my 17-40mm. Oh, and versatility. These things are almost a given in an 'L' series super-zoom though. I do tend to pixel-peep because it's a necessary evil for what I do (at least in my OCD mind). I regard the 1:1 image as my 'product' if you like—a bit like loupe-viewing a transparency in days of old. This is why I generally stay out of discussions on lenses and sensors and cameras. I don't really know who has the relevant opinion, though I'm pretty sure it's not me.
col_c Plus
3 24 United Kingdom
7 Nov 2013 8:29PM
I had the Sigma 12-24 for a while but now have the Canon 17-40 L. The Canon is the easier lens to use as it takes 77mm filters while the Sigma cannot take screw in front filters. With the Sigma the bulbous front element gets in the way and can be a bit exposed in use.

I like both these lenses and both my examples were sharp although both are best stopped down from their max apertures. The Sigma is a bit slower though with the high ISO values provided these days that is less of an issue.

I think the difference mostly lies in the extreme wide angle provided by the Sigma compared to the less wide angle of the Canon. If you want extreme wide angles then go for the Sigma but if you just want a no fuss ultra wide then the Canon is the better bet. The handling issues mean that the Canon is the easier lens to use for filters and less chance of damaging the front element.
colin beeley Plus
14 1.1k 10 England
7 Nov 2013 9:11PM
take a look here
Ptr_A Plus
7 54 United Kingdom
10 Nov 2013 10:33AM
Our eldest son usually only shoots 'L' glass, but bought the Sigma 12 -24 on a recommend from a pro shooter and swears by it.

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