Which new TS-E, 17 or 24? (new thread)

Started Jun 24, 2009 | Discussions thread
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ck_WTB Regular Member • Posts: 357
Which new TS-E, 17 or 24? (new thread)

I posted a discussion on April 13th about which new TS-E (17 or 24) would be better for architecture, that is if you only have the budget to get just one. If you can purchase both then you are set and very fortunate indeed! Here's a link to that original discussion


You might want to review that discussion as there were a ton of wonderful posts with excellent suggestions. Since that post was pretty long and old I've decided to start a new one as an update on the 17 verses 24 decision. Here's what's happen for me and how I made my decision to go with the 17 TS-E:

1) I rented the original 24 TS-E for a long weekend and took a ton of photos of Portland's latest residential towers. All photos were taken hand held with shifts between 5 and 8:


2) I then purchased a replacement grid screen for my 5D2. It's very helpful for aligning all shots in which you have a horizon line or rectilinear built elements. The grid lines are not distracting in the slightest and switching out the screen is quick and simple. In fact I am considering the purchase of additional screens to switch out as needed, such as a screen for manual focusing.

3) I originally ordered the 17 TS-E when it was first announced and currently sit at the top of the list with the largest private Canon retailer in Oregon. I hope to get this lens within the next week or so, although, this is purely wishful thinking since they don't have a clue as to when it might come in. I have decided not to place an order for the 24 TS-E. Why did I select the 17 TS-E over the 24? I will tell you this, the decision was very difficult and I could still go either way. To some extent it was mostly inertia as I had already placed my order for the 17 and sit at the top of the waiting list. So here's my pro/con list for the two lenses:

17 TS-E Pros

-Truly one of a kind lens and exceeds all other ultra wide angle lenses currently available for Canon. For architecture and landscapes that require ultra wide angle this is the glass to have....

-You will get the shot! Extreme shifting is not required to get all of the building in the frame. It is my opinion and experience that wider focal lengths are more useful for interiors.

-A 1.4x tele converter will produce 24mm focal length that seems to equal the original but not as good as the revised 24 TS-E. Using crop sensor camera is an even better option from an optical standpoint.

17 TS-E Cons
-More expensive

-No lens hood! This is a major concern for me as I always use lens hoods and find then essential for producing the best contrast and color. I am frankly a bit stressed out about the lack of a lens hood.

-No ability to place protective clear filter! Without a lens hood or protective filter this extremely expensive lens with massive front element protrusion is going to be an absolute pain to manage. Once again I am stressed about the vulnerability of this lens.

-More difficult to manually focus because of wider angle and relatively smaller details. I am considering the purchase of LCD eye piece developed for the 5D2 video capabilities as this will all Live View to be more easily used handheld and thus allow proper manual focusing and adjustment of tilt-shift. Shooting with a tripod is great and a given for most formal paid-for gigs but at the cost of this lens I will be using it for personal travel and documentations of my favorite architecture.

24 TS-E Pros
-Optical performance that exceed the 17 TS-E

-A very versatile focal length. Can even be used for portraits and other applications, while the 17 is more limited to architecture and landscapes.
-Easier to handhold
-Includes lens hood to shade and protect the front element

-Allows for screw on front element filters, which for me would be entirely limited to a clear protective filter

24 TS-E Cons
-Not wide enough for interiors (my opinion)

-Not wide enough for tall or large buildings, or subject from which you can not adequately back up, or extreme shifts will be required (note that anything over 5 resulted in image degradation with the original version, while the new version seems to be able to double the shift to 10)

Hope this helps others trying to decide between these two spectacular lenses,

 ck_WTB's gear list:ck_WTB's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Mark IV Canon EOS M6 Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM +6 more
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