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Old Jul 10, 2007, 4:33 PM   #1
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I have decided to buy the 400d,body only. I shoot a lot of different types of pictures working at a preschool. Candid,portrait action etc. If I can get one lens with a budget of around 300-400 dollars,what would you recommend? Thanks.
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Old Jul 10, 2007, 11:19 PM   #2
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You will get a lot of responses. Unlike many who have posted you gave a decent idea of what you want to shoot though not how important quality is to you. All lenses are design, weight, price compromises.

The Best aprox. $400 dollar Portrait lens I am aware of is the Tamron 17-50 2.8 (about $429) which compares favaorably to the Canon 17-55 2.8 $1000 and is better then the similarly spec Sigma 17-50 (around $400). There are of course many many choices.


There many people here that are quite knowledgable. You can also read reviews on many review sites. The one thing this lens can not do is bring you very close to a distant subject. For that you would need a longer lens. But you will not find a longer lens with a Constant aka Fast 2.8 aperture that is anything like $400.
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Old Jul 11, 2007, 7:20 AM   #3
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Thanks for the advice. Of course quality is important but at this time I just want something that I can learn with in a variety of situations and then move on to something better.
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Old Jul 11, 2007, 3:17 PM   #4
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Yeap - For that price the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 is as good as it get...

I'm also starting to see a lot of magazine ads for the Tokina 16-50 f/2.8 which should be hitting the stores - IMHO this is the only other lens that can top it if the price settle down:
http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len...ikon/index.htm

-> It's MTF here is quite deceivingly high because it's derived from a Nikon body
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Old Jul 11, 2007, 7:11 PM   #5
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The Tonkina is more like $ 650...
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Old Jul 11, 2007, 7:21 PM   #6
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As I mentioned each lens is a compromise of some kind.

You have to choose what is important to you for this first lens.

A better quality lens like the ones we have been chatting about will alow you to take shaper pictures, freeze more action, get more pleasing portraits, and rely on the flash less often.

Because of the crop factor on on all non Full frame Cameras a 17-50 acts more like 28-80mm tradtional lens. That is its a Decent Wide to Modest Zoom (50mm is netural as to bringing a subject closer) that is great for portraits.

You could buy the Kit 18-50 lens or a 50mm lens for under $100, about $85. Again a compromise. The former gives you the range of the more expensive zoom but gives up speed and some quality, though it is still a good lens. The 50mm is Strictly sneaker zoom you move the lens does not. Better Quality and speed, good for portratits but you might have trouble framing a group, not be able to back far enough away.

There are many 18-200mm lens that are perfectly fine (starting around $200). You give up quality and speed but you get a lot of flexabilty.

We can not decide for you though I would go for the Tamron 17-50mm. If you ever need to get really close you can buy a lens like a 70-210 or similar for the longer reach end, or even straight prime line like 300mm.

Good Luck
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Old Jul 11, 2007, 10:04 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the advice. You gave me a nice variety of options to think about.
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Old Jul 13, 2007, 1:59 PM   #8
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NHL wrote:
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Yeap - For that price the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 is as good as it get...

http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len...ikon/index.htm

-> It's MTF here is quite deceivingly high because it's derived from a Nikon body
Why would Nikon body make the MTF deceivingly high...???
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Old Jul 19, 2007, 3:07 PM   #9
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harana wrote:
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Why would Nikon body make the MTF deceivingly high...???
It's how the lenses are tested using Imatest which requires a test image to be taken with a body:

The Nikon mounted lenses are tested with a D80 with is higher in resolution than the Canon's MTF results which are tested using an XT (i.e. 10Mpixels vs 8Mpixels) resulting in lower MTF's in all Canon lenses...

-> This does not mean that Nikon lenses are generally sharper than Canon's in anyway, just the way their lenses are tested - i.e. you can not cross compare between Nikon and Canon MTF nor any other manufacturers for that matter, unless the different lenses are mounted on the same body of course which is not practical at all!

Some people do this in fact when they rework Leica lenses on Canon's bodies...
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