Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0L USM Lens
Many people buy a DSLR with a standard kit lens and are often a little disappointed with the results that they get. What many don’t realise is that the glass you put on the front is as important as the camera itself, and the standard lens will not release the full potential of the camera. If you are looking to upgrade your lens then the 17-40L is Canon’s most affordable offering in the acclaimed professional L series range. At around £500 it isn’t cheap, but this lens WILL improve your pictures. Think of it as an investment as good glass retains its value well. It is perfectly suited to crop sensor bodies and with an effective focal length of approximately 27-64mm it covers anything from scenic shots to catch pictures. I have used several different copies over the last five years and each has been excellent, with the pictures gracing many different publications.
So what makes this lens so much better than the standard kit lens? Well firstly it is very sharp for a zoom lens and remains so right to the corners of the frame where some softness can creep in on inferior glass. It also gives great colour saturation and contrast with pictures bright and colourful straight out of the camera. Compare it to results from the kit lens and it is instantly noticeable how much more washed out and under-saturated the pictures are on the cheap lens. Although at f4 this isn’t considered to be a ‘fast’ lens, it handles low light well and is great for long exposure shots. The bokeh is also surprisingly good for a wide-angle zoom. As you would expect the construction is much more robust than the kit lens, with metal mounts and full dust and weather sealing meaning you can use this lens in the rain without fear of damaging it and be sure that it will give you many years of service. I wouldn’t go anywhere without my 17-40 in the bag…
Check http://www.canon.co.uk for tech spec and more info
Available from Amazon, and a range of specialist photography outlets, expect to pay £480 – £580
Reviewed by Oli Davies
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