Canon 28-135mm vs Canon 24-105mm. is 24-105 worth $600 more? I'm trying to decide between the Canon 28-135mm and the Canon L 24-105mm for my "walk around" lens. I'm having a hard time determining if the 24-105 is worth the extra $600 to $700. I know the 24-105 is an L and is a better lens, but is it $600 better?
asked by G. Parker on February 2, 2007
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I used 28-135 for more than 8 years and was happy with it. Recently, I purchased 24-105 and I was very surprised. AF is fast, image is clear, IS is working very good. 24-105 is excellent lens and much better than 28-135.
Keiichi Nagata answered on February 20, 2009
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Deciding whether to purchase this lens or not is definitely a hefty decision, especially since $600 - $700 is a major difference. However, considering the quality, lens size (77mm), image stabilization (IS), and ultra-sonic mechanism (USM), the lens beautifully performs the job of a stock and telephoto lens in one. With sharp accuracy, the Canon EF 24-105L can zoom in wonderfully, bringing close and distant planes together, or allow you the option of zooming out to capture a scenic scape. As a professional photographer specializing in modeling photography, I have to sustain my zooming (with portraiture) options, and for me it comes convenient in one solidly built lens.

Keep in mind, I did have a difficult time in the beginning deciding whether to make the extra expenditure on this lens. I even considered other lenses, of other brands (compatible with Canon) of lesser cost, but eventually realizing this L-series lens was the real deal! Despite knowing how much camera battery life the lense can consume (there's nothing wrong with purchasing an extra battery!), the results outweigh the energy drain. The IS system, when turned on, is always on frequent notice, so whenever your hands tremble, the lens senses this, stabilizing the composition you're focusing on. But the IS system does have it's limitations. Afterall, don't think you'll get clear pictures if you mount the front-car of a rollercoaster ride and assume you'll get ultra-still shots. But the IS is wonderful during those shivering cold temperatures, low-light, or awkward moments which may cause movement of the camera. But if you know you're a camera-person with a sturdy hand, why then turn on the IS?

Once more, the lens will last for a good time, making this investment valuable and well-worth to adding to your camera gear. And don't forget to marry this spectacular lense with a polarizer circular lens from Quantaray! The results of your outdoor imagery is stunning with the lens and polarizer.
Walter A. Parada answered on July 17, 2007
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Although this is an old post, I am going to reply anyway. I owned the 28-135 and was quite happy with it. I still have a lot of photos I took with it. However, when I bought the 24-105 I quickly discovered the joys of a newer lens. Shorter on the long end, the 24-105 is outstanding for almost everything you will want to do. It is definitely worth the extra $ if you are semi-serious. If you are primarily looking for photos for yourself the 28-135 does a great job and has that extra 30mm...useful. So the answer is...what do you need? If you are going to insist on the best possible, you are going to have to get the 24-105. Either way, you will be happy.
M. ANNE answered on September 22, 2007
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A really old post but I can speak to it somewhat. I used the 24-105 L for a couple of years and just sold it for reasons having nothing to do with the lens. I am currently planning on buying another or the 24-70 L. I just bought a 50D with the 28-135 which makes a nice picture. What I have noticed. Focusing was quicker on the 24-105 and almost always dead on. Low light at times presented a problem but the same is true for the 28-135. I was using a 30D but the contrast on the older body with the lens was amazing! The IS worked fine and having the constant f4 whereas the 28-135 is not constant, really makes a difference. If you can save and get the 24-105 f4 L IS, do so. You will not regret it in the least. I sold my copy for a little under what I paid, but if I sell the 28-135 I'll loose so much more. I used the 24-105 for some outdoor sports, portraits, and my walk around lens. I also owned the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and will replace it with the IS version. I sold the 70-200 for more than I paid for it. L lenses retain their value for quite some time. I also put B & W filters on them for protection. But that is just me.
Donovan Martin answered on December 8, 2008
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The 24-105mm will absolutely kill anything you can get out of the 28-135. It's not just about sharpness - which will improve in the 24-105. It's also the contrast and the colour rendition. Believe me its chalk and cheese. Having said that, the 24-105 L IS is still not in the same class as either of Canon's L 70 - 200's either f4 or 2.8. But longer those longer lenses are easier to build. At the long end (200+) Canon rules.
Denis J. EVANS answered on January 4, 2010
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First I'll say I'm no pro so this is just my $0.02.
I'm trying to make the exact same decision with the 17-85mm in third place. What I'm thinking is that the 'weatherproofness' of the L lens will be beneficial to me because I don't want to be limited on where I can use my walk around lens, or to be annoyed at dust in a $500 lens. Of course overall image quality should better on the L. Neither lens is 'wide' on a cropped sensor camera (ie. XTi, 30D) so the 24 gets just a little closer to that. And last, the L lens will retain its value more and last longer. Say you don't like it, sell it. Say you want something different later, sell it. Say you love it, you'll know it should last a long long time. Oh, and the 10-22mm looks like the perfect companion.
Jason Wagner answered on February 15, 2007
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Interesting update to Mr.Parada's concerns about IS battery drain. With the advent of Li-on batteries, this has become far less of a problem, particularly on mid to high-range models. I was absolutely flabbergasted by the battery life of the 1D Mk111 on a recent trip to Australia. In two weeks of solid shooting, I only charged the battery once, and never needed to call on the reserve battery. I was using 500mm, 300mm and 70-200mm IS lenses most of the time, and have to say that Canon's own figures on this new style of battery were greatly exceeded. (Canon always seem to understate the performance of their products. Perhaps they look forward to the invariably glowing feedback?)
Out of habit (from using the Mk11N), I had to keep checking the battery menu just to re-assure myself, but it just kept on going, IS on or not! From what I've read in early tests of the 40D here in Japan, it looks like this could become the trend.
Steve Tracy answered on October 8, 2007
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The 24-105mm will absolutely kill anything you can get out of the 28-135. It's not just about sharpness - which will improve in the 24-105. It's also the contrast and the colour rendition. Believe me its chalk and cheese. Having said that, the 24-105 L IS is still not in the same class as either of Canon's L 70 - 200's either f4 or 2.8. But longer those longer lenses are easier to build. At the long end (200+) Canon rules.
Denis J. EVANS answered on January 4, 2010
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I realize that this is in response to an old post, but in answer to the question in the second line of Jason's March post...... No, the 10-22mm lens does not function to its full extent on a 1D Mk111, and vignettes badly up to around the 15mm mark.
Steve Tracy answered on October 12, 2007
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I'm a hobbyist. I'd like to upgrade from the 28-135mm to the 24-105mm, but I'm afraid of spending this much and getting a lens that isn't a "good copy." I'm just not expert enough to know if a lens needs to be recalibrated or something. Is it best for someone like me to buy local and ask the camera store to evaluate the lens sharpness? Or buy from someone like B&H and ask them to evaluate it before they ship it to me? I resell a lot of lenses, too, and I wouldn't want to resell it some day and have someone complain it wasn't sharp.
Slacker Mom answered on January 8, 2010
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