Steve's Digicams Forums

Steve's Digicams Forums (
-   Canon Lenses (
-   -   Choosing 2 Lens Combo for D60 (

rothwellsmith Dec 20, 2010 11:01 AM

Choosing 2 Lens Combo for D60
Hi There – I’m picking up a D60 "body only" and maybe some of you can offer some advise on the best 2 lens Combo.

First and foremost I’ll be doing a lot of outdoor photography for both sports and travel – as such my first pick is to get the Canon 70-200/2.8 L USM lens. This should be great for the sports, for the outdoor and for the travel where I’m looking to get some good framing close ups. (following on JohnG - types of sports would be Rowing/ Cycling - shooting from around 100-150meters from subjects. would not use for being really far away like full field Baseball game)

To Balance out this big lens, I’m looking for something smaller, easier to carry and something that would be suitable for ‘all round’ type of pictures – without duplicating the big lens. To be a bit more specific – portraits, some indoor photography, social settings, something that would be good with low light in galleries / museums (when not using a flash). Perhaps I’ll still use it outside as well – but what would be a good ‘2nd lens’ to balance out the big zoom. My Initial thought was obviously something under the 70mm range.

Because I’m putting my money into the big L lens – I’m thinking budget wise spending around $300-$400 on this 2nd lens.

Thanks for any suggestions.

JohnG Dec 20, 2010 11:41 AM


Can I ask - what sports are you shooting? At what level of play? Where are you shooting from? People that don't shoot sports seem to think a 70-200 2.8 is the holy grail of sports lenses. Whether it's a good lens or not depends entirely on the above questions. For example - it's a great lens for u6 soccer or below (small field), it's usable for track & field and youth baseball/softball if shooting from dugout or on the field. But when you get to full field baseball, full field soccer/lax etc, 200mm is woefully short.

Also, have you held a 70-200 2.8? You have to be committed to image quality to take the lens as a "travel lens" It's too short for wildlife, 70mm is often too long for indoor use on aps-c and it's a sizable lens to carry around. Don't get me wrong - it's a fantastic lens - I own one. But it may or may not be a good lens for what you want to use it for.
Now, here's the other tough part - your walk-around lens. This is a bit of a challenge because of your price point and needs. The problem with a number of third-party lenses is they start at 24m or 28mm which makes them a bit tight for landscape work and a bit tight for indoor work. So, you'll have to adapt to that tight framing if you go with something like a tamron 28-75 2.8

ropp Dec 20, 2010 5:55 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I don't know about shooting cycling, but I have shot thousands of rowing pictures, and a 70-200mm f2.8 is not what you need. The rowers want to see their faces and muscles in the boat, the tighter the better. There can be a huge difference in distance depending on whether your target boat is in the near or far lane. I started with a Canon 70-300 mm. f4-5.6 IS lens, then graduated to the Canon 100-400mm L lens. The latter is still hand holdable, and has good reach. You might be able to use a 70-200mm f2.8 with a 1.4X or 2X teleconverter, but probably no advantage.
You will need a wider lens for pictures of loading boats, waiting in the tent, launching, and other off the water activities. I used the Canon 17-85mm lens, there is now a 15-85mm lens as well. Perhaps your best bet would be the 18-135mm kit lens customarily bundled with the 60D body.
The attached photo was taken at 400mm on an XT body with the same 1.6X crop factor as the 60D.

JohnG Dec 20, 2010 6:38 PM

Yeah, 100 meters away - that's too far away for cycling. That's a rather bizarre distance. What type of cycling? Indoor or out. If outdoors, why would you be so far away? What is going to be between you and the riders? For certain you're not going to shoot either sport with 200mm lens from 100-150 meters away. That's a huge distance - further than most baseball. For cycling you'll want to be about 25 meters max for cycling - for the rowing you might get out to 40 meters for full boat shots.

rothwellsmith Dec 20, 2010 10:18 PM

1 Attachment(s)
you guys are hard core - I love it
ok.. getting into more detail

To ROPP: (so cool you know about rowing) so heres things in more detail: I volunteer coach for a rowing team - so a lot of the photos i'll take will be from my coach boat. I can park my coach boat right off the stern of the crews or right off the sides of the boats when there on the water - also when doing crew work outs i may be stationary and they'll be rowing by within 3-6meters.(i'm part of a program of 70kids - and the photography part is entirely amateur fun). The worst case senario is i'll be at a regatta and thats where i guessed being 100m away shooting from the shore. What I don't want is to invest in a huge lens that would be only really useful for 'for rowing': kinda like the guy onshore at a beach taking pics of surfers with a huge lens on a tripod: so not what i'll be doing. I did think about getting the 70-200 f/4 cause its smaller and a bit cheaper - but then though about situations of lower light conditions (early morning practices and such) and having a faster shutter speed would also be better - thats where the f/2.4 came up - and also i wanted more versatility out of a zoom lens.

Next year I'll be moving to Europe to work on some bike tours - and this is where i figured i would also gain from a good versatile zoom lens. Weather shooting from a van or from the road side - i can be far away or get some really good close ups of my clients; so distance wise, i can position myself pretty close.

Also - when i travel through europe it will be great to get some close ups of people and places without being intrusive. So together - all three situations that is how i came to think a 70-200mm would be suitable.

2nd lens

I've heard a lot about kit lenses being mediocre and that's why i'm more of the mindset to save $200-300 bucks off the start and get the camera as a body only and think about the 2 types of lenses i want and put my $$ in a good combo. I do like the idea of something in the 18-85mm..

THANK YOU all for your comments - so great to get perspective and your feedback - sorry if i'm missing any info that could further help!

(ps added photo i took using a canon powershot sd900 - type of distance)

TCav Dec 21, 2010 6:21 AM

For use on a small boat, I think the 55-250 would be a good choice. It is a very good lens, but just as important for your purpose, it's intended only for APS-C bodies, so it's smaller and lighter.

And for the second lens, I'd suggest the 15-85 IS USM. It's as good or better than anything in its class.

ropp Dec 21, 2010 10:30 PM

Keep in mind that during races, the coach cannot be on the water near the boats (unless you are under very different rules than U.S. high school). It is race pictures that the rowers want to look at, and the coach will be on dry land (possibly following the rowers on his racing bicycle). Hence the recommendation for at least the 70-300mm lens. Alternately, you could go with the 70-200mm and get a 1.4X teleconverter for race pictures.

TCav Dec 22, 2010 3:57 AM

I suggest, then, that you try each of them by renting them, to see how each of them works for you.

JustinThyme Dec 22, 2010 8:02 AM

Not to step on toes but its crew and you arent in a coach boat, its a launch. My wife went through two masters degrees at an Ivy league school, first with an oar in her hands and the second one coaching.

The 70-200 is not an approprite lens for this, too short for any regatta venues I have been to. It would be fine for shots from the launch but anything else it falls short. If you are really serious about getting the classic crew shots your going to need more reach. The 100-400 is probably the best for a mid range budget. For those who want the professional output its going to take a 300 or 400mm lens and a good position where you can get them head on or should I say tail on. The shots from the side dont do them any justice and misses the true beauty of the lines of the oars as they come out of the water in unison and the faces of the crew. There should be no chopped off boats or missing crew members and you would want sharp images, which I didnt see in either of the above examples.

rothwellsmith Dec 23, 2010 3:24 PM

Lot of great comments.

I've read a lot about the 15-85mm being great quality bang for buck in an all purpose walk around lens.

I also like the comments about renting a lens and trying it out (especially before paying some big $$$)- and so did some looking into that and for like 100 bucks i can get one for a week to try out - probably money well spent.

and to JustinThyme: I think it depends what country you're from ;-) Canadians say 'Rowing' and 'coach boat' - ever heard the term 'way enought' what the heck is that...i think thats Australian..?? Tomato / Tomahto LOL. Thanks for your comments - I would hate to be 'too short' - gonna try and get my hands on a few to 'test' out.

Happy Holidays to all!

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 3:57 PM.