Might be a great compromise...

Started Nov 4, 2019 | User reviews thread
Michael Thomas Mitchell Forum Pro • Posts: 12,158
Re: Might be a great compromise...

This was actually my first wide-angle zoom for my original Canon D30. (Yes, the 3MP "D30", not the later "30D".)

I shot MF and 35mm film for weddings for years. When the D30 came out, I picked one up right away, eager to immerse myself in the new technology. (I actually also owned a Nikon D1, part of an intentional plan to "audition" each brand's system, anticipating a substantial future investment in whichever new digital photography system suited me and my needs best.)

The D30 brought me the smallest film/sensor surface area I had captured with since 110 instamatics as a kid. And I had not anticipated losing so much real estate using the same focal lengths I had used with film. (I seldom shot wider than 28mm with my 35mm film cameras, but you can imagine my surprise when looking through the D30's viewfinder for the first time with an EF 28-135 mounted. Half my picture was gone!)

Even in 2001, a decent used 20-35 was neither rare nor expensive. I quickly picked one up and used it alongside both the 28-135 (I liked for the stabilization, but disliked for that dark 5.6 aperture) and the 28-105 (smaller, lighter, more compact, and slightly brighter), with which it was in the same class and paired well.

When I adopted the 1D/1DsII bodies, I upgraded all my glass to L series and replaced the 20-35 with a 17-40, which represented an improvement in every respect except size, and even then the increase was modest. (The 17-40 is one of Canon's smallest, lightest and least expensive L lenses.) So I don't recall actually using a 20-35 on a full-frame digital body.

Today, there is no reason to mount a 20-35 to an APS-C body. Even a cheap kit lens would offer a much broader range, better IQ, plus stabilization for less money. But for smaller full-frame bodies like the 5D or 6D series, it still a viable option for little cost. And yes, the size is cool.

 Michael Thomas Mitchell's gear list:Michael Thomas Mitchell's gear list
Canon EOS-1D Mark II Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 80D Canon EOS 5D Mark IV GoPro Hero7 Black +6 more
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