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  Reviews by: Dan Fleury  

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Canon EF-S 17-85mm f4-5.6 IS USM

Review Date: Aug 3, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Great range, IS, light.
build a little cheaply for the price

I have had 2 copies of this lens. The first I had was made in Japan, the second was made in Taiwan. The one made in Japan is tighter built and optically superior. The other was soft, and felt loose and wobbly. It was also lighter in weight.

My good copy is a great lens. Don't let the reviews scare you off in here. It is quite sharp, even wide open. I use it for mostly outdoor use. Indoors it is slow for sure. The IS works great on this lens. The focus is fast and quiet.

It's a great walk-around lens, with very good image quality. Just make sure you have the Japanese made version and you will love it.

Sigma 105mm f2.8 EX Macro 1:1 Lens

Review Date: Sep 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $190.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very cheap on used market, great clarity, contrast, colour, f45 on canon version, oh and sharp, sharp, sharp!
sigma's odd clutch auto/manual focus switching, AF hunting (expected), screw in hood

I picked up a rather used version of this lens. Full of dust, but got it dirt cheap. Sent it in to Sigma for a chip upgrage (it would not work on my 30D - error 99), and it floored me when I started using it.
Amazing colour, contrast and oh so sharp! The 1:1 macro is what I wanted this lens for, but I use it for portraits all the time, with the 2.8 aperture being great for that. I have found myself using this lens for some sports photography too! Its incredibly slow to focus, but if you have any manual focus talent, you will love the images you get!
The miniscule f45 possibilities of the canon version of this lens are great for the macro folks too. ( I think the nikon one is limited to f32?)
Amazing glass for the price. If you see one, grab it quick!