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Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM

ef17-40_4l_1_
Review Date: Mar 21, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $675.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very sharp, beautiful color rendition, excellent build quality.
Cons:
Would like to have the extra stop for indoor shooting, but like others, do not want to spend another $600 for one stop. Cheap bag provided by Canon...why bother?

This lens is a beautiful thing. From the moment I took some test photos in the camera shop I was hooked, and then it only took three months to decide on parting with all that money. I'm shooting with the Digital Rebel, and so I can't comment on edge-to-edge sharpness for full-frame, but edge-to-edge with the Rebel is near perfect and comparable to my 70-200 f4L. I shot with a friend's 16-35 L, and I can see little or no difference in the quality between the two, plus her lens is significantly heavier (and takes a heavy toll on the finances). There is absolutely no comparison between the Rebel's 18-55mm kit lens and this one, so all I will say is that it only took one test shot with the 50mm 1.8 to convince me to get rid of it for good. Dittos on almost everything that's been said by others in the forum.

Although relatively inexpensive for L glass, it's still a big chunk of change for someone not earning their living with photography. The only alternative for me was the Sigma 15-30mm, but every time I saw a used one for sale, the reason they were selling the lens was to get the 17-40mm. Big hint. For $200 more I will never second-guess my buying decision and I am guaranteed to get my money's worth--also, I know it will work with next generation Canon bodies without having the lens rechipped. Those with error 99 messages understand that last statement.





 
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

ef50mmf_18_1_
Review Date: Jan 2, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $70.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Fantastic image quality. Light. Cheap.
Cons:
Can't really complain for $70.

Sure, it's cheap looking, sure it's plastic, sure it's a little slow focusing, but who is taking pictures of fast moving objects with this lens? Forget the negatives, buy this lens. It's as sharp as my one L lens, and I love, absolutely love the portraits out of this guy. Color is nice, blurred backgrounds are beautiful. Highly recommended.