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Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4.5 DC MACRO

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Review Date: Dec 8, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $389.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharpness, fast aperture (f/2.8) at 17mm, fast focus speed, lightness and compactness, good range, close focus ability, feels sturdy and well built...
Cons:
Not many... The focus motor is kind of loud, the focus ring rotates during auto-focus, if I was being picky I would say lack of USM/HSM and weather-proofing, but for this price it is hard to complain...

I have been using this lens for a little over a month now, and I love it. It has become my normal walk-around lens, and spends a good amount of time on my camera (Canon Rebel XTi). The lens produces very sharp images wide open at both ends of the spectrum (17mm and 70mm), and gets even sharper stopped down one stop. I own two canon 'L' series lenses (70-200mm f/4L and 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6) and this lens holds its own against them in sharpness. The lens also produces a pleasing "bokeh" or out-of-focus area that is outside of the depth of field. The ability to focus very closely is nice, but don't let the name fool you... it will never replace a dedicated macro lens. I have used the lens for everything from portraits to landscapes; I am completely happy with it. If you are considering purchasing one of the Canon 1.6 crop bodies (30D, 40D, Rebel XT, Rebel XTi) then I would recommend purchasing the body only and picking this lens up to replace the kit lens that usually comes with them.