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Old Jan 23, 2005, 2:44 AM   #1
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I am considering buying an EOS 20D. I would use it primarily for taking close-up pictures of a baby indoors without flashlight and with ISO about 1600. I wonder if the kit 18-55 lens is good enough, or if I need to buy the 17- 85 lens from the beginning?
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Old Jan 23, 2005, 4:44 AM   #2
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The Canon 50mm f1.8 is good lens for the bargin price of about $70. This could compliment your kit lens nicely. For me my primary lens around the house is a Tamron 28-75 f2.8 XR Di. (new baby so I have lots of pictures! :G )

Also remember the 20D have very usable ISO3200. I've been blown away with the result i've been getting. (including prints up to 13X19). Here is a sample at ISO3200. This is BEFORE any noise reduction (I love Neat Image). Basically straight from the camera except for resize.

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Old Jan 24, 2005, 11:21 AM   #3
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The 18-55 is good, But if you have a choice for a kit lens get the 17-85. The 17-85 will give you more flexablitity when you go on family outings.Also consider getting the 50mm 1.8. You won't be disappointed with it .

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Old Jan 24, 2005, 11:59 AM   #4
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I would also recommend the Canon 50mm F1.8. A sharp lens for a small price.
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Old Jan 24, 2005, 8:45 PM   #5
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The difference in price between the 17-85 and the 18-55 is not small. At that price, many people think that it's better to jump to the 17-40 L instead. If in doubt, I'd first check the options -- are you really penalized for not getting the 17-85 with the camera? Is the difference in price kit vs. separate significant? If not, then 18-55 is certainly worth a try at the onset for saving some money, and it only costs $100 or so for this experiment.

And still get the 50 1.8 -- it's a great value, and an optical quality reference. It'll tell you how much better a really good lens is than the kit lens / other budget zooms, and also give you a very usable fast portrait lens.
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Old Jan 25, 2005, 9:19 AM   #6
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I agree with above posts regarding the 50/1.8 lense. Good bargan for small price. Suggest you take a hard look at the 17x85. This lense has a lot going for it and blows away the 18x55 kit lense. My lense is a good copy and as all zooms, it has some drawbacks. In my unqualified opinion, these are minor and actually have been impeerceptable for me. The 17x85 gives you a wide angle to higher magnification not available in any other lense, plus is for longer exposures. This is a lense you can leave on and use for a large varity of applacations that no other lense is available for. The slower F4rating can be overcome with flash. For me it has been a very useful lense.

Unless you are a very good pohotographer, demanding the most from you lenses, [ and can see the results] you may be very happy with this lense.

2 other thoughts are: the 50/1.4. This lense is incredible in low light applacations., and the 200mm 2.8 IS,a vety bright medium telephoto lense, especially if coupledwith the 1.4 or 2.0 tele. extender.

Hope this is helpful. Good luck with your purchase.
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Old Jan 25, 2005, 1:10 PM   #7
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Before everyone talks about the 17-85 too much remember what Sten originally stated his purpose was: to take indoor photos of his kid at low light without a flash. The 17-85 has a max aperture of f/4 - f/5.6 -- that's NOT going to work really well without a flash or at max ISO. Same with the kit lens-- its max aperture is not large enough.

Mr. Saginaw's rec of the tamron with a constant max aperture of f/2.8 sounds good (note that he also uses ISO 3200) but the best choice would be the Canon 50mm f/1.8 (or the Canon 50mm f/1.4!) The former is cheap, lets in a lot of light, and works well as a portrait lens... sure you have to do some "feet zooming" but with a baby, that should be OK.

Now, if Sten needs another "walk around" lens for different purposes, then perhaps he should consider the 17-85 (I don't have any experience with it, so I can't comment on it one way or another). My point is:

Don't choose the 17-85 OVER the 50mm f/1.8
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Old Jan 26, 2005, 5:25 PM   #8
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perdendosi wrote:
Don't choose the 17-85 OVER the 50mm f/1.8
Surely it depends on the mileage you can get out of the Image Stabilizer; Canon quote this generation IS as worth 3 f-stops in handholding. Now f/4 subtract 3 stops is f/1.4 and f/5.6 subtract 3 stops is f/2.

Of course the IS only stops the camera shake, it doesn't stop motion, so it's not great for moving subjects.

Some 17-85 users have claimed excellent hand-held results by firelight only with the ISO pushed up high.

As for bokeh, well the extra focal length at 85mm will give you reduced DOF over the 50mm if you need it, and there won't be too much difference between a 50mm @ f1.8 and an 85mm @ f5.6, and in fact I've seen a number of photos at f1.8 where only half a face is in focus, which is of limited appeal.

So in some circumstances the zoom is precisely suitable as an alternative to the 50mm f1.8 and at 50mm is probably just about as useful at a given ISO value.

I have had some good results of my youngster in low light indoors using the 18-55mm kit lens with the ISO bumped up high, you really shouldn't underestimate the low-light performance of the 20D. With the extra steadiness given by the IS on the 17-85 or the aperture on the 50mm f/1.8 you will find that your ability to take indoor photos without flash will amaze you.

So my advice would be to get the camera with the 17-85mm kit and see if it works for you, if you feel the need for the extra speed (and you may very well not) then by all means add the 50mm f1.8 which costs almost nothing considering how nice it is.
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Old Jan 26, 2005, 8:58 PM   #9
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Saginaw, I do not get how you can get results likr that at ISO 3200. I have the 20D and it does not get anything like that at even ISO 400. What gives?
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