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Old Mar 18, 2004, 1:06 PM   #1
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Default Lens Combo Question

Okay. I think I have this narrowed down. Please advise on my delimna. Which would make the better lens combo? I am mainly shoot landscapes (50%) and portraits (25%). The other 25% consists of indoor plays, ball games, zoos, and flowers. I can buy either combo for roughly the same amount (1200-1400 which is my budget). I ordered the 50 1.8 II because it seemed like the right thing to do. Any other attractive combos in that price range? I definitely want quality, but it doesn't have to be the best money can buy. Thanks in advance.

#1
15-30 Sigma
28-135 IS Canon
200 f/2.8 Canon

#2
17-40L Canon
70-200L f/4 Canon
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Old Mar 18, 2004, 10:38 PM   #2
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I might interject with some preaching for Sigma glass. I personally have a Sigma 24-135 f2.8-4.5 and an 80-400 OS 4.5-5.6. You could conceivably get both lenses for ~$1300. Ritz, suprisingly enough, sells the 80-400 as a special order for $999, and you could get the sigma at B&H for $300. I have been very happy with both lenses so far. Purists might tell you to stick with L glass, but I have seen many an amazing picture with Sigma's lenses.
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Old Mar 19, 2004, 9:10 AM   #3
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If you can afford the L lenses definately go for them. In every objective analysis I have seen they are considerably better then the Sigmas. I like choice 2---the 17-40mm is just an incredible lense and the 70-200 is legendary. I have the IS version but you wont lose quality with the non-IS one.
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Old Mar 19, 2004, 11:58 AM   #4
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To stand firmly between the two who have commented....

The question is "what is good enough". For example, if you are making picture and selling them... you are willing to spend the money and get the best lenses possible. Or if money is no object, you buy the best.

But for most people, money matters and you have to justify the cost. Sigma makes some good lenses (and some dogs) just like Canon does. If the Sigma isn't good enough for what you want and you have the extra money, get the Canon. If you don't have the money, then look closely at the Sigma lenses. Some are better than the cheap Canon version. They might cost more than the cheaper Canon, but less than the expensive Canon. Does that make sense?

To say it another way, some good Sigma lenses can cost less than the high end Canon but optically be close in quality. If the difference between them doesn’t matter, then get the sigma. If it does, and you can afford the high price the letters “canon” stamped on the lens demands, then get the Canon.

In all things, it’s a question of how good is good enough and how much you are willing to spend.

Eric
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Old Mar 20, 2004, 11:17 AM   #5
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All excellent advice. Decided to go with the 17-40L first, then sell the 28-135 IS, and purchase the 70-200L f/4. Can swing it within a month or two and it won't break the bank. But the extra 2mm of the Sigma 15-30 really does look appealing.
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Old Mar 20, 2004, 10:11 PM   #6
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The 17-40L is an excellent choice. You should put a filter on it to protect the inside of the lens. Without it, its not completely sealed.

Barthold
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Old Mar 21, 2004, 1:53 AM   #7
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barthold

Very interesting. I have this lens as well, and like it a lot. I don't use it nearly enough (for the cost.) But I've never heard anyone say it has that problem and that I should get a filter. Very interesting. I guess I should go look more closely at my lens.

Eric
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Old Mar 21, 2004, 2:19 AM   #8
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Hi Eric,

Just look in the front of the lens and you'll see it. Canon recommends a filter if sealing is important to you. To quote from the manual (page E-1):

Sealed construction for higher dust- and water-resistance compared to previous lenses. For maximum protection, a filter must also be attached to the front of the lens.

Not a problem for me, I always have a UV filter on my lenses, or sometimes a polarizer.

Barthold
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Old Mar 21, 2004, 3:31 PM   #9
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Default Canon Lenses

I join the discussion late; however, I like your option #2. It is the exact combination that I would like to buy. Being respectful of other opinions, I will only say that my experience with Sigma lenses does not allow me to recommend them. I will grant that my experience is 20 to 30 years old, and that alone may invalidate my opinion.
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Old Mar 21, 2004, 11:25 PM   #10
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Congratulations on your choice. Those are the two lenses I use with both my EOS 3 and Digital Rebel. I've never taken a comprehensive outfit on vacation to save weight, but my Digital Rebel and 17-40, 70-200 f4 are going with me in April on a two week cruise. It truly is an outfit light enough to be a no-brainer to take anywhere. And you'll never have to worry about whether they'll work with any future Canon camera you may buy.
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