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Conclusions

Having shot a variety of Leica wide angle prime lenses under the same conditions, I have new appreciation for just how good Leica lenses are— but they also cost 3-10X as much! You get what you pay for. But even Leica lenses have their limitations, especially field curvature. So these Canon EF lenses deserve some respect for what they do at a very low price point.

Zoom or primes

Shooting one lens and knowing it well it are the key to good photographs (on top of a vision of what you want to accomplish). A single top-notch lens is better than a “good” zoom lens, or a bag o' lenses. And having to stop down for acceptable performance means that wide aperture landscapes and low lighting shooting limit your possibilities.

You could buy all five of the Canon primes reviewed here for about $1855. You could also instead get the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II, and save $400 or so, so if you want the range, get the zoom. But don’t assume you’ll get better pictures with the zoom, either artistically or optically.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

DAP includes thousands of pages of exclusive coverage and high resolution Retina-grade examples detailing Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies and their lenses, with in-depth analysis of sharpness and contrast, color, bokeh, vignetting, distortion, MTF, and flare, behavioral and practical usage.

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