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Old Feb 7, 2007, 5:46 PM   #1
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I just bough a Xti. I love the camera, but i don't think the kit lens is up to par. I'm in the market for a new lens. I will eventually get a nice zoom lens and a portrait lens. What are you suggestions. I'm looking to spend about $200 on a new lens. I'm a college student so it limits my budget. I heard alot about the 50mm 1.8 and thought that would be a good lens to start out w/. Tell me what you guys think. And what other zoom lens would be good (i don't need a $1000 lens at this time).
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Old Feb 7, 2007, 7:20 PM   #2
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If u can extend that budget to say around 270-300 i would recommend the 50mm F1.8 and a sigma 70-300 APO DG Macro lens.

The sigma will also serve as a decent macro not 1:1 though. Its sharp enuff and very light. Decently built. The 50mm is around 70 and the SIgma is around 180-200.

The kit lens is really good for landscapes, even macros. Its a bit slow but other wise it is a great lens.
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Old Feb 7, 2007, 8:22 PM   #3
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The kit lens is not that bad.

The Sigma 70-300mm APO is a good lens to cover your long range need. I bought the cheaper version non-APO $139 a week ago and quite happy with it. Save some money to buy a flash, get the Sunpak 383, a used one from $30-50 the most, later buy the Canon flash,keep the Sunpak as a backup.





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Old Feb 7, 2007, 9:08 PM   #4
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the canon 50mm 1.8 is an amazing peice of glass for the money.
I got it and my best shots were made with it.
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 12:15 AM   #5
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How is the 70-300 that canon makes? How does that compare? Is sigma just another company that makes lenses? What are those numbers that are usually after the zoom length (like f/4-5.6).

On the 50mm lens, what's the difference between the 1.8 and the 1.4.

I know i have ltos of questions, thanks for the support.
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 6:42 AM   #6
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lilboi wrote:
Quote:
I just bough a Xti. I love the camera, but i don't think the kit lens is up to par...
The kit lens is an excellent lens for the price
IMO you can't get any better deal than this (at least for <$200)



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On the 50mm lens, what's the difference between the 1.8 and the 1.4
f/1.4 is ~twice as bright as f/1.8 :idea:
The f/1.4 is made of metal and also a true USM ultrasonic lens
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 7:46 AM   #7
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lilboi wrote:
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What are those numbers that are usually after the zoom length (like f/4-5.6).
These numbers represent the maximum aperture value available. When you see only a single number like f4 it means the lens can maintain f4 at any zoom length. When you see f/4-5.6 it means the lens is capable of f4 when at it's shortest zoom but only capable of 5.6 when at it's longest zoom.

Aperture basically refers to how much light is let in by the lens. 5.6 is HALF the light of f4.0.
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How is the 70-300 that canon makes? How does that compare?
The Canon 70-300 is a better lens but it's $550 vs. the <$200 sigma lens. The canon lens will have better focus and it has image stabalization if that's important to you. Please note, Canon also makes a crappy 75-300 lens that is prettty poor - don't confuse it with the newer 70-300 above.

Quote:
Is sigma just another company that makes lenses?
Sigma makes some cameras as well but primarily lenses. Sigma, Tamron and Tokina are probably the 3 biggest 3rd-party manufacturers of lenses. One thing to keep in mind, the sigma 70-300 is a great value for <$200 but at the end of the day it's comparable in quality to the kit lens - it's meant to be a value item not a top performer. You're not going to get a top performing telephoto lens for under $200. $500 is probably the low end for top notch 200mm + lenses.

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but i don't think the kit lens is up to par.
I find this statement interesting as I hear it a lot from people just starting out. I don't know if it's true in your case but more often than not I believe this conclusion is reached based on 2 factors:

1. inexperience on the part of the photographer.

2. Believing all the other newbie posts that say the lens is garbage.

Yes the lens is not as good as other lenses on the market but the differences aren't as pronounced - especially for most people just starting out. Poor shots taken by people just starting out would still be poor in most cases even with the best lens on the market. Not knocking anyone with this statement - just pointing out that every one of us goes through a learning curve when we get into SLR or DSLR photography.

The only reason I would agree with the assessment is if your photography needs require either a different focal length than the kit lens OR a faster aperture. But, I also agree fully with NHL, for <$200 you're not going to get a better performer than the kit lens.
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 9:17 AM   #8
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Finally JohnG said all in a clear easy to understand the basic of photography.

There are good low cost lenses for fresh start out in DSLR world on limited budget. Pick out the best you can afford and learn the charateristic of the zoom, it's sweet spot, avoid the soft end.I've seen many with no experience enter the camera shop at first looking for a basic DSLR ended up get out of the store fully loaded with thousand of dollars top of the line equipment, studio flash, umbrellas, fast lenses...expect to get magazine quality pictures. Go slow, one step at a time, learn what a prime lens is, what a wide angle effect when stay close to the subject, what's the limit of a long zoom, how to compensate for handshake...When move up to a more advanced level into a specific field, macrophotography buy a good macro lens, outdoor sports buy the best telezoom....pass on those low cost gear to a family member, keep the hobby alive.

First and most important, learn the basic shutter speed/aperture relationship to control the camera.
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 11:55 AM   #9
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So if i'm in the market for a zoom lens, would the 70-300 f/4-5.6, be a good lens to start out with. So for the comparison between the sigma and canon ones (both f/4-5.6), there is a 300 dollar price difference, and that's just for image stablization?



How does this compare w/ the sigma version. http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....=1051806943002

I know its a 75-300, but that's only zoom.
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Old Feb 8, 2007, 12:19 PM   #10
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As already mentioned, the Canon 75-300 is a poor quality lens. Poor optics, poor focusing.

As for the canon 70-300 vs. the Sigma, again as mentioned the Canon will also have faster focusing. So, you are paying for IS, faster focusing and the Canon name.

NHL is our MTF chart guru so hopefully he can chime in as to how the sharpness compares between the Sigma and Canon lenses. He or someone else versed in MTF charts can better answer whether the Canon will be sharper as well.

Whether the 70-300 is a "good zoom to start out with" depends entirely upon what you plan on shooting. If you're buying a zoom lens just because you want more zoom but with no particular goal then yes it will be a very good lens to start out with. But then, if you can deal with the slower focusing and lack of IS and (maybe) less sharp then the Sigma might also be a good lens to start with.
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