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Old Sep 7, 2005, 6:39 PM   #1
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ok, first off. i purchased my rebel xt about a month ago, and love it. my current lenses are as follows:

kit 18-55mm
50mm f/1.8 II

i'm looking to spend around $500-600 on a good lens, and i don't know where to put it. i have some ideas, and suggestions are very welcome. here's what i've been looking at.

sooner or later, i'm going to purchase the Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG Macro for a walk-around lens. but i do not know. i don't require a lot of zoom ALL the time, and just how clean is this lens, and the focusing. handheld, how much of a problem will i have at 300mm? just looking for some experience with this lens.

i'm also into taking macro shots and thought about purchasing the Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro lens, but after looking at reviews and sample pics from the Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro, i've been impressed. i take tons of portrait shots as well, and this seems to be a great lens for this purpose as well. ideas?

i also have pondered on the possibility of upgrading my kit lens w/ another wide angle lens of some sort.

considering that i take a lot of event shots (get togethers, group shots, etc) which would be cost effective for this? i was thinking about getting the 105mm and the 70-300mm, which would be around $550.00. this would give me the macro capabilities and the walk-around lens i need.

comments and suggestions are highly appreciated. thanks so much.

sincerely,

jon rowe
http://www.magnolia-net.com/~jedmag/photography/


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Old Sep 7, 2005, 8:31 PM   #2
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Those lenses (in particular the macro lens) seem kind of long for portraits... especially for group shots. If you think 50mm is too short for portraits, maybe you should try something like 85mm (Assuming that you're not using the 70-300 as the portrait lenses- kind of slow).

I think your current equipment is better suited for the event photos, overall. If you seriously wished you had a longer lens during those times... then by all means... But I don't think the 70-300 will be your new best friend.

I've heard that beyond 200mm, images get a little soft. The main reason to have 200-300mm, then, is because you can activate macro. But you're already spending money for a true macro lens. So there's one less reason to have this particular lens.

But I don't know, from the sounds of it, it doesn't even seem like you desperately need a tele. If you really don't need one, then I'd go for replacing the kit lens with a faster one. (maybe a 24-70 f/2.8?). I think that would be better when it comes to portraits... and then there's the 18-50 f/2.8 if you need a wider option... Unfortunately, this is probably above your budget if you include one of these with the macro lens...


Btw nice tennis court shot.
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Old Sep 7, 2005, 10:58 PM   #3
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Stretch your budget a little and give the Canon 70-200 f/4L a look, you won't be dissappointed. It is very sharp, and not too heavy. The only drawback is it's not the fastest(f/4)lens, but for daylight shots it is very very good.
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Old Sep 7, 2005, 11:01 PM   #4
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I have quite successfully used the Sigma 70-300mm lens and I like it a lot. It is not Canon L type glass, but it is an excellent inexpensive lens that is quite cost effective. I agree that all the way out at 300mm it does get a bit soft, but back off a bit and it sharpens right up for you.

Here is a sample photo taken without flash from over 100 feet away. You will notice that the sharpness and aperture was quite workable.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Sep 8, 2005, 2:32 AM   #5
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jedmag wrote:
Quote:
sooner or later, i'm going to purchase the Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG Macro for a walk-around lens. but i do not know.
Quote:
i'm also into taking macro shots and thought about purchasing the Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro lens, but after looking at reviews and sample pics from the Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro, i've been impressed. i take tons of portrait shots as well, and this seems to be a great lens for this purpose as well. ideas?
Quote:
i also have pondered on the possibility of upgrading my kit lens w/ another wide angle lens of some sort.

Since you don't seem to be in a hurry, I'd suggest waiting for the release and review of the new EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM -- it looks like it could be a winner, and it also has IS.

For macro, consider the new EF-S 60 f/2.8 macro. I love full frame, and would not ordinarily recommend an EF-S lens, esp. a prime so close to the 50 you already have, but this lens looks like it might be optically superb (yes, better than the 50's). Wait for detailed comparisons before jumping though. No point inwasting money if it's not much better than a 50.

The kit is OK as a general purpose lens and a stand-in for wide angle. But if you want better optical performance, and find that you shoot in this range for most of the time, it makes sense to pay much more for the significant but not extremely dramatic improvements that you can get with better lenses in this range, even before you fill in a seldom-used telephoto or macro slot.
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Old Sep 8, 2005, 9:58 AM   #6
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Hello jedmag. I have the same camera and lenses as you and I have been thinking about replacing the kit lens to give me better quality wide angle. I was thinking about saving for the Canon 17-40 f4 L USM but then I read about the Sigma 18-50 f2.8 EX DC.The Sigma is quite a bit cheaper but is a recommended alternative to the Canon on this test. Have a look and see what you think.

http://www.pbase.com/fstopjojo/17401850
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