Canon EF-S 17–55mm lens
|Short back focus||Yes|
|Application||Fast Standard Zoom|
|Focal length (35mm equiv.)||27–88mm|
|Aperture (max/min)||f/2.8 / f/22|
|Construction||12 groups / 19 elements|
|# Diaphragm blades||7|
|Close focus distance||0.35 m (1.15 ft)|
|Max. magnification||0.17 @ 55mm|
|Max. diameter||83.5 mm (3.3 in)|
|Max. length||110.6 mm (4.4 in)|
|Filter diameter||77 mm|
|Lens hood||EW-83J, optional|
|Angle of view|
The fast f/2.8 aperture, combined with 3-stop Image Stabilization, makes the 17–55 very useful in low light compared to an un-stabilized f/3.5–5.6 Canon EF-S 18–55mm lens, which is a frequent kit lens, and thus the 17–55 is much more suited for hand-holding and available light photography. Newer versions of the 18–55 kit lens include 4-stop Image Stabilization, but remain slower aperture, partly addressing this concern.
Some users have reported dust gathering inside the lens.
The 17–55mm is not an L-series lens, but it has two UD (ultra-low dispersion) lens elements, which are largely reserved for L-series lenses, and some say that the 17–55 has comparable image quality to L-series lenses. Some regard the decision to not designate the lens as L-class as marketing-driven, but being EF-S it will not fit on a full-frame body—therefore, at least under current Canon marketing strategy, cannot be labeled L-series.
"The resolution figures are among the very best seen so far for an APS-C standard zoom lens."
The build quality is inferior to L-series lenses (plastic body, not magnesium alloy), though superior to the EF-S 17–85mm lens.
Unlike most other EF-S lenses, the 17–55mm does not have a direct equivalent in the range of traditional EF lenses. As a general purpose EF-S zoom lens, the alternatives to the 17–55mm are the EF-S 18–55mm f/3.5–5.6, which is a cheaper kit lens; the EF-S 17–85mm f/4–5.6 IS USM, which is midway between the 18–55mm and 17–55mm in some respects — depending on which version of the 18–55 one is comparing — and boasts a longer telephoto end; and the newer EF-S 15–85mm f/3.5–5.6 IS USM, which has similar build quality to the 17–55mm and the largest focal length range of the group.
The 17–55 is at times compared to the EF 17–40mm f/4L USM, which has similar image quality (despite the latter being L series and the 17–55 not being so designated), though the 17–55's faster aperture and IS make it more suited (by one stop) for hand-holding and available light photography. Also, it can be compared to the three Canon EF 24–70 mm L lenses. Two of the 24–70 lenses have the same f/2.8 maximum aperture as the 17–55, but no image stabilization; the newest 24–70 has a maximum f/4 aperture but adds stabilization. When mounted on their equivalent cameras (full-frame for the 24–70, and crop for the 17–55), the two lenses have similar focal lengths. The IS system of the 17–55 gives that lens an advantage over the 24–70 f/2.8 in lower light by reducing the amount of camera shake. The 17–55 and the 24–70 f/4 are both stabilized, but the 17–55 has a one-stop advantage over that version of the 24–70.
The EF 28–90mm, though having corresponding full-frame equivalent focal length, is an inexpensive kit lens and is not comparable to the 17–55mm, having slower aperture, a variable maximum aperture, lower image quality, and no image stabilization.
Notes and references
- Greenspun, Philip. "Canon EF-S 17-55/2.8 IS USM Review". photo.net. Retrieved 25 February 2008.
- Carnathan, Bryan. "Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Lens Review". The-Digital-Picture.com. Retrieved 25 February 2008.
- "Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM". SLRgear.com. Retrieved 25 February 2008.
- "Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 USM IS – Test Report / Review". photozone. Retrieved 25 February 2008.