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Old Aug 25, 2013, 5:32 AM   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Cape Cod, Massachusetts
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Default Advice as to when to buy a new lens

From time to time, I get requests from people new to this forum (and to photography) asking for advice as to what lenses they should buy. Most often, it's a question that starts off with: "I just got a new DSLR with kit lens and I would like to add another lens but, I'm confused about which to buy. Can you help me decide which would be better for me, a 35mm or a 70-300mm.

Now, I'm sure I'm not the only one, on this forum, who gets a message such as this. So, I'm hoping that this post will help both the people who ask the question as well as those who get asked.

As flattering as it is to receive a request such as this from someone, the reality is that if your asking the question, you do yourself a disservice if you limit yourself to one person's answer. Please, feel free to post a question such as this, here, in the "Newbie Help Forum". You'll get a wider range of answers, and most likely, more questions asking for more information.

As for what my general advice is? (forgetting the lens question, for a minute) If you are new to photography and indeed have just bought a new dslr:

1- The single most important thing you can do is to first, download the user's
manual onto you computer or, preferably, a tablet (I-Pad, etc).
2- The 2nd most important thing you can do is, READ IT.
3-Have it for reference wherever you go. (the reason for having it on a tablet)
as it does no good to you if you're out in the field taking photos, have a question and don't have it to refer to.
4-Do not buy any other lenses- until such time as you know everything there is to know about the camera you own and the lens it came with.
Camera companies and makers of lenses, such as Sigma, Tamron, etc. love people who rush off to buy that new lens or worse two lenses that they've just read about only to find out that the kit lens had the capability of doing what it was they wanted to shoot, in the first place. Or worse, find out that the three lenses they now own, won't meet their needs.

Ever wonder why there are so many used lenses for sale on E-Bay, Craig's List etc?

5-If possible, join a local camera club. Local clubs are a wonderful way to meet people with common interests only too happy to share their knowledge. If not, join a forum like Steve's
6- Ask plenty of questions.
7-Decide what type of photography you like doing and what limitations, if any, your current lens presents.

In the end, most likely, you'll not need to ask the question, because you'll know the answer.

Hope this helps.

So you want to be a better photographer? Open your eyes and take a look at what is all around you.

Last edited by zig-123; Aug 25, 2013 at 6:46 AM.
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