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Old Dec 5, 2009, 6:11 PM   #1
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Default Telephoto Zoom lens choices


Recently purchased a Rebel Xsi as my first DSLR primarily for an Aerial Photography application. Most of the subjects of the pictures are houses, farms, farmsteads and such requiring low level flight so I'm trying to consider which lens I should get. I've seen a 55-250mm IS USM or a 75-300mm IS zoom lens for sale, the former the cheaper and more affordable. Any ideas on whether its worth the extra money for the larger lens? Thanks
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Old Dec 5, 2009, 6:57 PM   #2
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The biggest difference between them is that the 55-250 is an EF-S lens, so it's smaller and lighter, but it only works on dSLRs with APS-C size image sensors. For what you've got in mind, I don't think there's much reason to go up to a 'Full Frame' dSLR, so there wouldn't be much chance that you'd regret that limitation later.

But there are some other differences as well. See:

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM (Tested)

... and ...

Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS (Tested)

Most noteably, the 55-250 has a lot more vignetting than the 70-300, but you'll probably be shooting in good light, so you can probably afford to stop down. The 70-300 is slightly sharper, but the only real advantage is the longer focal length.
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.
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Old Dec 6, 2009, 4:41 AM   #3
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And be careful - there is a 75-300 IS which is a very poor lens.

That is different from the 70-300, which is good.
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Old Dec 6, 2009, 10:30 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, I appreciate the advice. I think that the 55-250 is probably what I'll go for since it seems to be able to cover most of what I need and will be lighter and easier for me to manipulate in the airplane, not to mention the cost savings. Back to Ebay . . . . . .

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