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Old Aug 25, 2006, 10:15 AM   #1
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I am about to buy my first DSLR, a used Digital Rebel XT. I have been shooting with a Canon Powershot SI IS. I am always using the 10x zoom to its fullest capability and wishing it was 12x or 14x so I am wondering what lens to buy for my Rebel XT that would be the equivalent to 12 or 14x zoom. Note: I do not want to use a tripod at all so should I get IS in the lens or is this a gimic and unnecessary?

As for type of photos I travel a lot and take a lot of travel photos. When I am at home the photos are mostly of wildlife, marinelife, boats, birds, and landscapes.
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Old Aug 25, 2006, 10:41 AM   #2
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There is no lens which is going to cover the range provided by your S1. Even if there was one, it would need to make a lot of compromises and wouldn't be good optically. So buy couple of lenses based on what you shoot option, wideangle for landscapes (even though some folks zoom teles for this), some prime like 50mm f1.8 and tele for wildlife/birds. The last option is going to cost you a lot as lenses with IS and >=300 mm are expensive. I use 100-400L IS which is $1400 along with 400mm f5.6 which is $1100. The 400mm prime gives me 560mm with 1.4xTC for birds.
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Old Aug 25, 2006, 10:51 AM   #3
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12 or 14 times WHAT?
Zoom ratio is a fairly meaningless marketing gimic. 10x zoom merely means that the focal length is ten times longer at full zoom than at it's widest.
Your camera has a 35mm equivalent focal length range of 38mm to 380mm. 10-100 or 80-800 would also be 10x but would be completely different lenses. Lenses with that much zoom are very difficult to make well and so few exist for slrs. Hardly any good slr lenses have more than 3x zoom. What you want is a long focal length.
To get a 35mm equivalent of 380mm on a Rebel you need to divide by 1.6 (because a piece of 35mm film is 1.6 times wider and higher than the sensor on the XT). This gives 237.5mm so a lens of that length would give the same 'zoom' as your Powershot. I guess a 300mm lens would be what you are looking for.
IS would probably be useful if you are going to handhold a lot, but it depends on what you shoot. Good for stationary subjects, but less so the faster the subject moves.
Canon have a 70-300 with IS. Much cheaper is the sigma 70-300APO which doesn't have IS and much more expensive are faster 300mm lenses from several manufacturers.
You will also want a lens in the 17-50mm range for more normal shots.
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Old Aug 25, 2006, 4:51 PM   #4
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The Bigma 50-500 is a 10x lens (although I don't know who would use that lens @ 50mm) :idea:

-> Your best bet (i.e. most affordable) is not an XT, but the Sony Alpha with built-in IS, the standard kit lens will give you the 17-50mm range and the Bigma 50-500 will cover the rest - All theses lenses will come with IS because it's in the body and not the lenses!
That's a lot of range from only 2 quite excellent lenses, 17-500mm (i.e. 30x)

BTW even that 50mm f/1.7 that everyone rave about will also have IS too... :lol: :-) :G
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Old Aug 28, 2006, 11:48 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses. I went ahead and ordered the Canon 70-300mm with IS. Thanks for the great advice; it really did help in the decision-making process!
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