Ad
Ad
Ad
Pages: [1]   Bottom of Page
Print
Author Topic: Looking for Canon/Nikon lens comparison info  (Read 3791 times)
Lisa Nikodym
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1702



WWW
« on: November 12, 2005, 04:37:43 PM »
ReplyReply

It's probably about time for me to trade up from my Nikon D70 (want more pixels, mostly), and I have two excellent options, the Canon 5D and the Nikon D200.  I have no particular loyalty to either Canon or Nikon, and expect the decision to be driven mostly by lens choice.  Specifically, I'm looking for the best single zoom lens that will cover roughly the 28-105mm (full frame equivalent) range while staying small and lightweight.  The 5D can do it with Canon's new 24-105mm f/4 L lens, while the D200 can do it with Nikon's 18-70mm ED lens (which came with my D70).  The problem is, I don't know which lens/camera combination will give me the overall best image.  People compare Canon lenses with Canon lenses and Nikon lenses with Nikon lenses, but rarely Canon with Nikon.  Does anyone know of any source of information (including personal experience with both lens lineups) that can help in this decision?  (Please don't just tell me "I have a Canon/Nikon and the Canon/Nikon lens is great" - I'm looking for sources that are familiar with both, otherwise it's just a popularity contest.  )

I know the 5D has more pixels, but I wouldn't need to buy a new lens with the D200/18-70 option, so those two issues about balance out for me.  If there are any other major differences between the cameras I haven't thought of (I rarely use flash, so that's not an issue), I'd be happy to hear about that too.

Thanks,
Lisa
Logged

jdemott
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 434


« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2005, 05:50:51 PM »
ReplyReply

Lisa, I don't know of any such Nikon/Canon lens comparisons that are really useful, as opposed to those that are just based on off-the-cuff opinions.  However, given the price difference, it would be surprising if the Canon set-up isn't at least a little bit better in some respect, at least with the lenses that you mention.  The D200 ($1700) plus Nikon 18-70 ($340) is about $2040.  A Canon 5d ($3700) plus Canon 24-105 ($1250) is about $4950.  

The Canon is an "L" lens which is Canon's pro line and is a constant aperture lens.  The Nikon, which I have, is a consumer or prosumer grade lens.  For the price I consider it a good value, although optically it isn't quite as nice as Nikon's 28-105mm AF (also a similarly priced consumer lens).  AFAIK, Nikon doesn't make a pro grade (fast, constant aperture) zoom lens that covers the entire range you're interested in.  Nikon's pro zoom lenses tend to cover slightly shorter ranges of focal lengths but offer wider constant apertures (f2.Cool than the Canon 24-105.  Probably the closest pro grade Nikon lens is the AFS 17-55mm f/2.8 ED, which is a DX digital lens.  It has top notch optics and a fast constant aperture but not the full zoom range you want (roughly 25-83mm as a full frame equivalent).

I've used the 18-70mm Nikon on my D2X and it does fine (i.e., it doesn't have a problem with the 12 MP resolution and has excellent color and contrast) but as you probably know from using it on your D70 it suffers from very slight CA (easily correctable in the RAW conversion or in PS) and very slight distortion at the extreme ends of the zoom range (also correctable).

The interesting comparison will be to see how the 5D and D200 stack up against each other when both have equivalent (pro) quality lenses mounted.  I assume that when dpreview does its review of the D200 there will be such a comparison included, but it may not feature the lenses that you're interested in.

Good luck finding useful Canon/Nikon comparisons, but even if you do, I think you'll have to do some serious thinking about the price difference unless you are a lot more indifferent to price than me.
Logged

John DeMott
Eric Myrvaagnes
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7965



WWW
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2005, 08:45:58 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
It's probably about time for me to trade up from my Nikon D70 (want more pixels, mostly), and I have two excellent options, the Canon 5D and the Nikon D200.  I have no particular loyalty to either Canon or Nikon, and expect the decision to be driven mostly by lens choice.  Specifically, I'm looking for the best single zoom lens that will cover roughly the 28-105mm (full frame equivalent) range while staying small and lightweight.  The 5D can do it with Canon's new 24-105mm f/4 L lens, while the D200 can do it with Nikon's 18-70mm ED lens (which came with my D70).  The problem is, I don't know which lens/camera combination will give me the overall best image.

<snip>

Thanks,
Lisa
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=51127\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Lisa,

Since you already have the Nikon 18-70 lens, I'd suggest trying to rent each of the cameras for a week and do your own tests. I just learned that my local Calumet has a rental 5D available, which I plan to take out sometime soon. If you could rent both, and the Canon 24-105 L lens, you'd be able to do comparisons that would really mean something to you. (If you do it, I'd like to hear your conclusions.)

Just my 2 centimes.

Eric
Logged

-Eric Myrvaagnes

http://myrvaagnes.com  Visit my website. New images each season.
lester_wareham
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 116


WWW
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2005, 05:39:04 AM »
ReplyReply

It is a bit out of date but you can look at the photodo site , they at least have compared using the same measurement method. Some of the lenses may now be obsolete.

I was interested in if Nikon Leica etc were better wide angles than Canon and had a look at this using the available photodo data. You can look though this at Lester's Look at Alternative Wide Angle lenses using Photodo data.
Logged
Lisa Nikodym
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1702



WWW
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2005, 11:29:35 AM »
ReplyReply

Thanks, Lester.  I'd forgotten about the photodo site.  Unfortunately, all the lenses I'm considering are relatively new ones, and photodo is indeed out of date and doesn't have them.

I'd also forgotten about the new Nikkor 18-200mm DX lens, which I'd grab in a minute for a D200 (or even my D70) if it's about as good as my 18-70mm DX.  Anyone know when it's expected out???

Lisa
Logged

Slough
Guest
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2005, 12:07:38 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
Thanks, Lester.  I'd forgotten about the photodo site.  Unfortunately, all the lenses I'm considering are relatively new ones, and photodo is indeed out of date and doesn't have them.

I'd also forgotten about the new Nikkor 18-200mm DX lens, which I'd grab in a minute for a D200 (or even my D70) if it's about as good as my 18-70mm DX.  Anyone know when it's expected out???

Lisa
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=51178\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

As pointed out, your 18-70 lens is a consumer zoom, though very good for the price. I guess what you want to ask is whether or not you are willing to pay a premium for full frame. The 5D is at least 800 more expensive than the equivalent APS sensor camera. And what do you get for the extra money? Well better high ISO performance, and not much more. Reviews will give a balanced summary.

However Canon should soon have a replacement for the 20D with at least 10MP. But I'm not sure if they have high quality zoom lenses to match?

Of course one reason to go for Canon - apart from the IMO over-rated full frame - is the image stabilization. Nikon have VR, but in less lenses.

My own choice would be Nikon because they have a high quality APS sensor body and lenses to match. I do a lot of macro work, and the MLU on Canon bodies is poorly designed. And as I don't like spending money the 5D is too much. But that's just my decision based on my needs and tastes.

Regarding the 18-200 zoom, the large zoom range (11x) will surely mean lots of aberrations.  It might well be that the new Sony 10MP camera with a fixed 10x zoom will give better results (due to no mirror chamber allowing the designer more freedom). Not sure if it has IS/VR?

Leif
Logged
Lisa Nikodym
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1702



WWW
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2005, 07:25:07 PM »
ReplyReply

Quote
As pointed out, your 18-70 lens is a consumer zoom, though very good for the price. I guess what you want to ask is whether or not you are willing to pay a premium for full frame. The 5D is at least 800 more expensive than the equivalent APS sensor camera. And what do you get for the extra money? Well better high ISO performance, and not much more. Reviews will give a balanced summary.

However Canon should soon have a replacement for the 20D with at least 10MP. But I'm not sure if they have high quality zoom lenses to match?

Of course one reason to go for Canon - apart from the IMO over-rated full frame - is the image stabilization. Nikon have VR, but in less lenses.

My own choice would be Nikon because they have a high quality APS sensor body and lenses to match. I do a lot of macro work, and the MLU on Canon bodies is poorly designed. And as I don't like spending money the 5D is too much. But that's just my decision based on my needs and tastes.

Regarding the 18-200 zoom, the large zoom range (11x) will surely mean lots of aberrations. It might well be that the new Sony 10MP camera with a fixed 10x zoom will give better results (due to no mirror chamber allowing the designer more freedom). Not sure if it has IS/VR?

Leif

I've had a Nikon user who works in a camera store tell me that Nikon's ED lenses are generally as good as Canon L lenses, though I'm not sure whether to believe it.  It's true the 18-70 is an inexpensive lens, but a lot of that is because it's a "reduced-frame" lens, which is much cheaper to do well.  So is it as good as a typical Canon L lens???  Good question.  Anyone have any comments?

And I imagine the 18-200mm lens will, as you said, mean lots of aberrations.  The question is, will it be an excellent lens in the 18-70mm range (which makes it as good as what I currently have), with the 70-200mm being an extra bonus (for which I can live with some aberration, on the relatively rare occasions I use that range on a reduced-frame camera).  Also, that lens has VR, which is a big plus for that 200mm end of things.

The only real advantage of full frame, at least for me, is that you get less noise when you have larger pixels, all other things being equal.  Noise is indeed a significant issue for me sometimes.  That's what I really don't like about fixed-lens cameras like the Sony you mention - those smaller sensors produce much more noise.  As you say, though, the Canon is more $$$ - and you can buy a lot of noise reduction programs for the price difference.  

Thanks for your comments, Leif.

Quote
Since you already have the Nikon 18-70 lens, I'd suggest trying to rent each of the cameras for a week and do your own tests. I just learned that my local Calumet has a rental 5D available, which I plan to take out sometime soon. If you could rent both, and the Canon 24-105 L lens, you'd be able to do comparisons that would really mean something to you. (If you do it, I'd like to hear your conclusions.)

And Eric - yeah, that's actually worth a try, once the new 18-200 Nikon lens comes out.  There's a big camera store near me that will let me take a few sample shots with the various cameras in the store, and I'll probably give that a try.  Now I just need to wait until that lens comes out, and Canon starts shipping the fixed 24-105 lens again.  I'm waiting impatiently.  

Lisa
Logged

BernardLanguillier
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 7976



WWW
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2005, 01:23:04 AM »
ReplyReply

The French magazine Chasseur d'Image has a comprehensive set of highly scientific lens test data available for order in paper form.

It it in French, but can be ordered from their site at www.photim.com

It is devided in 2 categories:

- lens only: the older tests,
- lens + DSLR: the newer tests.

The conclusion is that Nikon and Canon lenses are overall very close to one another, but this does of course depend on the lens.

The new Canon 24-105 was shown to have a remarkably high definition accross the frame, but very high distorsion and light fall off at the wide end.

Regards,
Bernard
Logged

A few images online here!
Lisa Nikodym
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1702



WWW
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2005, 10:15:06 AM »
ReplyReply

Quote
The new Canon 24-105 was shown to have a remarkably high definition accross the frame, but very high distorsion and light fall off at the wide end.

Bob Kulon (in another thread) was complaining about the bad distortion of this lens too.  If I get an opportunity to try out that lens, I'll make sure to take an image at both ends of the range and check carefully for distortion.

I'll take a look at the French web site too.  Thanks, Bernard.  Between a year of college French and a French dictionary, I should be able to figure it out.  

Lisa
Logged

Pages: [1]   Top of Page
Print
Jump to:  

Ad
Ad
Ad