Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

Started 3 months ago | Discussions
e61 New Member • Posts: 11
Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

I’m looking at my options for an autofocus, EF-mount f2.8 wide zoom for an RP. As far as I can tell, the best options (and please correct me if I’m missing any) seem to be:

— Tokina Opera 16-28mm f2.8 ($700)

— Sigma Art 14-24mm f2.8 ($1,100)

— Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 G2 ($1,300)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8L III ($1,900)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8 II ($1,600 or $950ish used)

I’ve read the positive reviews for all of these lenses. However, I haven’t seen much in terms of comparisons, especially after Tokina’s latest was released.

I understand Canon’s 16-35 III is likely the best lens here. But what about the others? How do they stack up?

Here are my questions, particularly to those who have used at least two of these lenses:

— Which is the best value for its price?

— Setting money and use case (landscape, astro and real estate, for me) aside, which are the best lenses? Are there particular strengths or weaknesses of any of these?

One personal note: These zoom ranges are all fine with me. More flexibility is great, but I don’t have a compelling need to get below 16mm or above 24mm with this lens; it would mostly be used in between that range.

Thanks for your thoughts and feedback!

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 Tamron 15-30mm F2.8
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hotdog321
hotdog321 Forum Pro • Posts: 20,179
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

e61 wrote:

I’m looking at my options for an autofocus, EF-mount f2.8 wide zoom for an RP. As far as I can tell, the best options (and please correct me if I’m missing any) seem to be:

— Tokina Opera 16-28mm f2.8 ($700)

— Sigma Art 14-24mm f2.8 ($1,100)

— Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 G2 ($1,300)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8L III ($1,900)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8 II ($1,600 or $950ish used)

I’ve read the positive reviews for all of these lenses. However, I haven’t seen much in terms of comparisons, especially after Tokina’s latest was released.

I understand Canon’s 16-35 III is likely the best lens here. But what about the others? How do they stack up?

Here are my questions, particularly to those who have used at least two of these lenses:

— Which is the best value for its price?

— Setting money and use case (landscape, astro and real estate, for me) aside, which are the best lenses? Are there particular strengths or weaknesses of any of these?

One personal note: These zoom ranges are all fine with me. More flexibility is great, but I don’t have a compelling need to get below 16mm or above 24mm with this lens; it would mostly be used in between that range.

Thanks for your thoughts and feedback!

Can't speak for all of them, but Canon's 16-35 f/2.8L III is much, much better than the 16-35 f/2.8L II, especially in terms of edge/corner sharpness and chromatic aberration. Center sharpness is similar. If you have deep pockets and the need for a f/2.8 lens, this would be my hand's down choice.

Canon's 16-35 f/4L IS is also a huge favorite (lighter, less expensive and almost as good as the f/2.8L III) that almost everyone loves, but for astro it is less than ideal.

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Selene Senior Member • Posts: 1,254
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

How much astro do you do?  If you do a lot, then I would recommend the Canon 16-35 2.8 III. It is really superb for astro shots and is a wonderful all around lens.

If you don't do that much astro, I would second the recommendation for the Canon 16-35 F4.  I got this lens shortly after it came out and have used it on multiple Canon cameras including the R and RP.  It is just plain a sharp and lightweight lens.  The light weight pares it really nicely with the RP. Because of the IS, I have found it good in very low light (though I wouldn't recommend it for astro).  The lens has gone with me all over the world, in extreme cold, extreme high temperatures, rain, snow, high humidity, whatever and the pictures have always been great.  It is by far my favorite lens and worth a look. I haven't used the Tokina version for Canon, but I did have the Nikon version when I was using Nikon cameras--I found it heavy and had distortion issues that I haven't had (outside of the usual issues with wide angle lenses) with the Canon lens, though it is always possible that the Canon version is better.  I tried the Sigma, but it was heavier than I wanted.  The Canon 2.8 III is heavier than the f4 version, but not bad.

Kaso Veteran Member • Posts: 4,358
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

e61 wrote:

— Which is the best value for its price?

Canon 16-35mm f/4L

— Setting money and use case (landscape, astro and real estate, for me) aside, which are the best lenses?

Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L III

Andy01 Senior Member • Posts: 2,316
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

Have you considered getting a 16-35L f4 for general use, and something like Samyang 14mm f2.4 XP premium or Sigma 14mm f1.8 for astro ? Probably similar in price to a Canon 16-35L f2.8 iii.

Colin

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threw the lens
threw the lens Contributing Member • Posts: 832
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

Everybody wants to know "what's the best camera", "what's the best lens".

Fortunately you have mentioned your uses.

I'd say get the Tamron. You could save on the first version. The VC will be handy for taking shots indoors when you are without tripod or your own lighting. Optical characteristics are very good. Not quite as good as the Sigma Art but that doesn't have VC.

If you do interiors hand held the 15-30 is flat out better than the 16-35 f4 people are advocating here despite the fact that you only mentioned f2.8 lenses. The f4 sharpness is excellent but always vignettes in the corners even though it is only a slow f4. There is nothing you can do in shooting that is going to pull that one stop back which you are missing on it.

Ed Rizk Veteran Member • Posts: 3,352
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

e61 wrote:

I’m looking at my options for an autofocus, EF-mount f2.8 wide zoom for an RP. As far as I can tell, the best options (and please correct me if I’m missing any) seem to be:

— Tokina Opera 16-28mm f2.8 ($700)

— Sigma Art 14-24mm f2.8 ($1,100)

— Tamron 15-30mm f2.8 G2 ($1,300)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8L III ($1,900)

— Canon 16-35mm f2.8 II ($1,600 or $950ish used)

I’ve read the positive reviews for all of these lenses. However, I haven’t seen much in terms of comparisons, especially after Tokina’s latest was released.

I understand Canon’s 16-35 III is likely the best lens here. But what about the others? How do they stack up?

Here are my questions, particularly to those who have used at least two of these lenses:

— Which is the best value for its price?

— Setting money and use case (landscape, astro and real estate, for me) aside, which are the best lenses? Are there particular strengths or weaknesses of any of these?

One personal note: These zoom ranges are all fine with me. More flexibility is great, but I don’t have a compelling need to get below 16mm or above 24mm with this lens; it would mostly be used in between that range.

Thanks for your thoughts and feedback!

Since you have the RP, have you seen the RF 15-35 F2.8 IS coming out this year? I bought the marginal at best 17-40 used for $4XX as a place holder for it.

The best architectural lens on planet Earth is the TSE 17, but it won’t help you for Astrophotography. It also needs a tripod. I have taken a few pictures with it hand held, but it is not very ergonomic.

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Ed Rizk

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Genobkk Forum Member • Posts: 88
Re: Wide-angle f2.8 zooms — so many options; which one’s best?

threw the lens wrote:

Everybody wants to know "what's the best camera", "what's the best lens".

Fortunately you have mentioned your uses.

I'd say get the Tamron. You could save on the first version. The VC will be handy for taking shots indoors when you are without tripod or your own lighting. Optical characteristics are very good. Not quite as good as the Sigma Art but that doesn't have VC.

If you do interiors hand held the 15-30 is flat out better than the 16-35 f4 people are advocating here despite the fact that you only mentioned f2.8 lenses. The f4 sharpness is excellent but always vignettes in the corners even though it is only a slow f4. There is nothing you can do in shooting that is going to pull that one stop back which you are missing on it.

I have the 15-30 SP 2.8 gen 1. It is great!! Although on the eos R it does not focus the best but still very usable.  I keep this lens mounted to my camera . I bought my copy then gen 2 came out about 4 months later so that was a bit disappointing but still do not think their is not a lot of real difference.  I have not used the others on your list but I am happy with my Tamron

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