18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

Started Apr 4, 2012 | Discussions
EJDarcy Junior Member • Posts: 46
18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

Please help me decide in what to purchase...

I recently sold my 18-55 kit lens just because I sold my T3i (upgraded to 60d), and the seller wanted a lens to go with it. So, now I don't have a lens with wide capabilities. I have a Tamron 28-75 2.8, Canon 55-250 (kit), and the 50 1.8.

We camp a lot during the summer, and we have kids. I am thinking I would like the 17-85 for landscape photos, and then the extra range would be nice to candid shots of the kids while camping. I could (hopefully) put one lens on while camping and leave it at that. OR.. maybe I should say forget it and save some money and buy the 18-55 lens back?? Would I be losing much image quality going to the 17-85?

I know that the 17-85 is not perfect, and I also know the 15-85 is a much better lens. However, I can't justify that cost right now, so that one is not in the cards. I found the 17-85 for $225 used, or of course I could pick up the 18-55 kit lens for under $100. I'm going crazy trying to decide which one to get...GRRRR... I have considered other lenses too (i.e. Sigma 17-70), but I think I have it narrowed down to just these two now. Any suggestions would be HIGHLY APPRECIATED! Thank you!

Canon EOS 600D (EOS Rebel T3i / EOS Kiss X5) Canon EOS 60D
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jcr67 Senior Member • Posts: 1,345
Re: 18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

For that price, I think the 17-85 is a great deal. It certainly isn't a great lens, but I don't think it is as bad as some like to think. Good range, ring type usm af and ok image quality for $225.. Not too bad.

OP EJDarcy Junior Member • Posts: 46
Re: 18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. With the focus being different than the 18-55 does that mean it would be faster to focus? That would only benefit me with having kids, right?

lightform Regular Member • Posts: 133
Re: 18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

Both of these lenses are reviewed here on DPR and they favor the 18-55is over the 17-85. The price on the 17-85 is very good but I think I would go with the 18-55is and start saving for the 15-85 a very nice lens.

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MonteCarlo67 Regular Member • Posts: 172
Re: 18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

Just tossing another option at you, the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8-4.5. It sells new at B&H (and just about anywhere else they sell it) for only $199. I had the Canon 18-135mm kit lens that came with my 60D (since moved up to the 7D and used the same lens on it). The 18-135mm wasn't bad, but it wasn't great. I also picked up a used 17-85mm assuming it would be better. It wasn't. I then picked up this Sigma and it is actually better! Sharper than either Canon lens. Stabalization works great. Goes down to f2.8 at the wide end (although to be fare, like most lenses this isn't the lenses strong point for sharpness). Focusing is not as silent as the 17-85mm but better than the 18-135mm. All in all, it's one to consider.

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Paul De Bra
Paul De Bra Forum Pro • Posts: 12,527
Yet another idea...

With the 17-85 you would have 100% overlap between it and the Tamron 28-75. I have once borrowed the 28-75 and used it side by side with the 17-85IS. When using RAW and doing CA correction (and distortion correction) tue 28-75 was not noticeably better than the 17-85IS. In low light having the constant f/2.8 seemed like a big advantage but the 28-75 i a third-party lens and it could only roughly guess what the commands mean that the camera was giving it.

So I would recommend that you sell off the Tamron 28-75 and use the extra cash to get the 15-85IS which is not only better than the 17-85IS but also wider.

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Slowly learning to use the 450D, the Canon G6 and the Fuji F200.
Public pictures at http://debra.zenfolio.com/ .

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hesbehindyou Senior Member • Posts: 1,787
Re: 18-55 kit lens or 17-85 help please!?

EJDarcy wrote:

I know that the 17-85 is not perfect, and I also know the 15-85 is a much better lens. However, I can't justify that cost right now, so that one is not in the cards.

The lens is disappointing in many respects but it gives you greater focal length - useful when snapping candids and for getting that nice blurred background. Pick up 17-85 second hand. Sell it to fund the 15-85 when you've saved up.

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