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Old Jul 22, 2008, 3:02 PM   #1
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I'm a SLR starter and just bought the canon xti body. And I'm looking for a lens for it. Actually, I have read many reviews and compare the prices and become more confused.

So I really want to know that how much the "IS lens" affect the image quality compared lens without "IS" for photo without tripod. Do I really need to buy the IS lens?

And anybody can recommand some zoom lens for me? Canon lens and third party lens are both Ok. I don't know much about the lens, but I think the "super zoom" lens is better such as
Sigma 18-200mm lens or something like that. Of course, my budget is only up to 500$.

Thanks :-)



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Old Jul 22, 2008, 3:07 PM   #2
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Generally the bigger the zoom range the worse the quality, but the more convenience.

Do you need IS? Basically yes - it's a good idea if you can afford it.

http://www.imx.nl/photo/technique/technique/page40.html

Can't say what the best lens for you is without knowing what kind of photography you want to do.
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Old Jul 22, 2008, 5:58 PM   #3
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Whether IS will be beneficial depends upon several factors:
  • Focal length / weight of lens (weight is important - a 300mm 2.8 is a heckuva lot heavier than a 300mm 5.6)[/*]
  • What shutter speed is being used[/*]
  • What your subject is
[/*]
For some situations IS can be extremely beneficial. But for others it is a complete non-factor.

There are also other aspects that are infinitely more important to image quality. I'll gladly take my 70-200 2.8 non-IS lens any day of the week over an 18-200 with IS. No brainer. So, just because a lens has IS does not mean it's a quality lens or better than another lens without IS.


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Old Jul 23, 2008, 4:45 PM   #4
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To put it in layman's terms, it is great for photos where things are not moving in the scene. If the subject in the photo is moving then IS will not improve your shot. It doesn't stop action, it just allows you to handhold longer shutter speeds, which with the longer shutter speeds will blur moving subjects.
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Old Aug 11, 2008, 6:23 PM   #5
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I know what you mean. Now I wish I would have gotten a non-IS 70-200 f 2.8, only because the IS lens is quite large, I can't see ever handholding it, so why the extra weight and expense of the IS?
Unfortunately, I didn't really think it through before I bought the Canon 70-200 f 2.8 IS Oh well, lesson learned.:-)

Joe
Kalispell, MT
Canon 40D

JohnG wrote:
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I'll gladly take my 70-200 2.8 non-IS lens any day of the week over an 18-200 with IS. No brainer. So, just because a lens has IS does not mean it's a quality lens or better than another lens without IS.

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Old Aug 11, 2008, 6:29 PM   #6
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I'm a fairly new DSLR user, the first lens I bought (and one that is on my camera most of the time), is my Sigma 18-200 OS (sigmas term for IS)

It's not the fastest or the sharpest, but it's pretty darn good for most things. Add to that, it's light and relatively inexpensive. Most people that see the pictures I take with it are very impressed. (but then again, they aren't all that critical):G

The OS is nice, I just take pictures with it. I don't really need to worry about shake (unless it gets ridiculous).

Joe
Kalispell, MT
Canon 40D
Sigma 18-200 OS f 3.5-5.6
Canon 85mm f 1.8
Canon 70-200 f 2.8 IS L

gaoshuaigs wrote:
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And anybody can recommand some zoom lens for me? Canon lens and third party lens are both Ok. I don't know much about the lens, but I think the "super zoom" lens is better such as
Sigma 18-200mm lens or something like that. Of course, my budget is only up to 500$.

Thanks :-)


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Old Aug 28, 2008, 6:09 AM   #7
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You'll find that tests of the two 70-200 f/2.8s (non-IS versus IS) will show the non-IS is slightly sharper.
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Old Sep 16, 2008, 7:11 PM   #8
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Interesting thread... although I'm not sure I understand any more about lenses now than when I started reading!

I'm about to purchase my first dSLR - most likely a Canon XSi. It comes with an 18-55mm IS lens. Aside from wondering if this lens is a bare-minimum piece of junk, I'm also wondering if the IS business is unnecessary. If I'm going to purchase another lens at the same time,should I bother with another IS version?

My first digital camera was a Canon A85 and more than 50% of my pictures were coming out blurry. Camera-shake, I suppose. When I upgraded to my current Canon S2 IS, there was a huge improvement in the clarity and quality of my pictures.

Any advice would be appreciated. My mostfrequent subjectsare friends and family at various functions and social gatherings (weddings, parties, cottage gatherings). I also travel to the Caribbean at least once every winter and I like to capture as much of the experience as I can in photos (architecture, landscape, nature, culture). Rarely am I trying to capture moving subjects, except maybe the odd shot of my dog jumping for a frisbee.
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Old Sep 16, 2008, 7:49 PM   #9
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Boldstar wrote:
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Any advice would be appreciated. My mostfrequent subjectsare friends and family at various functions and social gatherings (weddings, parties, cottage gatherings). I also travel to the Caribbean at least once every winter and I like to capture as much of the experience as I can in photos (architecture, landscape, nature, culture). Rarely am I trying to capture moving subjects, except maybe the odd shot of my dog jumping for a frisbee.
Actually the kit lens is a decent lens. The original was a bit poor but the newer version is quite good. For what it is. You can't compare it to a $1000 lens and expect it to be equal. But it's a great start.

Where you will likely run into issues is the weddings and parties. My best advice for those situations is to invest in a good external flash (430ex should be fine). The other alternative is a lens with a wide apertue and using high ISO. The problem with that approach is twofold: 1) you still may not be able to get fast enough shutter speeds and 2) you often want to get people interacting - which means you need greater depth-of-field (DOF). DOF basically refers to how much of an image is in focus. At wide apertures, not much is in focus - nice for portrait type shots but bad for social interaction. And while people aren't running at these things they don't hold completely still. So taking shots at 1/15 shutter speeds isn't going to get you a lot of keeper shots.

I would advise you to stick with just the kit lens for a bit until you find it doesn't meet some need. Then come back for some advice with some sample photos of where the kit lens let you down. It's surprising how many times it is technique that causes the problems and, like the case with parties, how the right tool might just be a relatively inexpensive flash vs. a $1000 lens. If you're itching to get more than the kit lens I would suggest, based upon your stated needs, getting a flash before a different or additional lens.
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Old Sep 16, 2008, 8:08 PM   #10
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JohnG wrote:
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Where you will likely run into issues is the weddings and parties. My best advice for those situations is to invest in a good external flash (430ex should be fine). The other alternative is a lens with a wide apertue and using high ISO. The problem with that approach is twofold: 1) you still may not be able to get fast enough shutter speeds and 2) you often want to get people interacting - which means you need greater depth-of-field (DOF).
Thank you for the advice JohnG. But now I want to put your words into perspective. You mentioned that I might have trouble at weddings and parties... I assume you mean that they'd be low-light situations. So here are my thoughts: The Canon S2 IS that I'm using now, for the most part, does a great job in those particular situations. Of course it does not perform great from a distance indoors, despite the super-zoon lens, because of the limited light. But for shots within a 10' range, it works fine.

Can I not assume the XSi would perform as well if not better in those situations, given that I'm graduating up to a dSLR?

I hope I'm making sense here...
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