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Old Mar 2, 2004, 2:18 PM   #1
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Default what should I do now? I need some advice pleaseee

I'm looking for some solid advice on what course I should take. And I'm hoping all the pros here can help. I'm fighting time so to speak.

I like shooting landscapes + still life (no macro though) in low light as well as bright day light.

Currently I own a canon 100mm F/2 as my psuedo telephoto lens.

recently I recieved a sigma 24-70mm F/2.8 Ex aspherical lens. The lens however is soft at F2.8 at all focal lengths. If i stop it down F5.6 or higher it starts getting sharper. I'm thinking about returning this lens for a 2 prime combination (canon 50/f1.8 + sigma 24/F1.8) or a single wide prime lens (sigma 20mm F1.8). The problem is that I'm not good enough to know how to use primes effectively. I own a drebel, I have the kit lens, 18mm-55mm. And that allows me to zoom around a bit until I get what I want but the kit lens is very slow F3.5 and not good for low light work unless I carry a tripod(which I don't do often). Plus it's not very sharp either. From what I understand prime lenses are always going to be sharper and faster than zooms.

If i don't return the sigma I have a "walk around lens". It's not too bad when it's stopped down to F8 or F11 but at F2.8 it's incredibly soft.

If I do return it I'll have primes good low light lenses but I'd lose my walk around lens.

The nail in the coffin of course is that I don't want to go over the price of the sigma in the exchange.

So what should I do?
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Old Mar 2, 2004, 2:26 PM   #2
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Default You should...

Learn to use a prime lens as your "walk around" lens. The only thing you lose is the ability to zoom in & out while standing still (which is why you have legs). While some (expensive) zooms are great, most are compromises that create weaknesses not found in primes.
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Old Mar 2, 2004, 10:11 PM   #3
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I agree with Kalypso. My recent experience with that Canon 100/F2 you have has been pretty decent, and sharp at 2, from my little unscientific experiments. If I needed to zoom back then I'd step back a few feet and things worked out okay. I'd suggest, as Kalypso infers, that you experiment a bit longer with what you have and see what happens.
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Old Mar 4, 2004, 3:26 PM   #4
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Default Dump The Soft Lens

If a lens is "soft", what good is it? Especially if sharpness counts to you. If you really know the lens, and under what conditions it is acceptably sharp to you, save it for those times. But if you enjoy going out and taking the best pictures you can, get a lens that will take itself out of the consideration of shooting equation.
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Old Mar 4, 2004, 5:04 PM   #5
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I will only add this. All lenses get better as you stop them down (and then after a certain point get worse again.) So I would expect it to be better at f5.6 than at f2.8.

But if you expect to use it a f2.8 and it isn't good enough there then replace it.

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