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Old Feb 17, 2009, 10:48 PM   #1
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I am a newbie photographer and I have decided to buy a Canon Rebel xsi. I plan on taking a photography course, but I am interested in buying a body/lens combination package. Do I need the lenses that I buy to have image stabilization? I don't want to have to take a tripod with me where ever I go....
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Old Feb 17, 2009, 11:28 PM   #2
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Image stabilization reduces, if not eliminates, motion blur due to camera shake. If you can keep the shutter speed fast enough, then you can't shake the camera enough to produce motion blur. The 'Rule of Thumb' had been that if you can keep the shutter speed faster than the inverse of the focal length, you'll be fine. That works out to be 1/200 second if you're using a 200mm lens, but that was for 35mm film cameras. With dSLRs with the smaller APS-C image sensors, you need to increase the focal length by the 'Crop Factor', so with a 200mm lens on the XSi, which has a Crop Factor of 1.6X, you need to keep the shutter speed faster than 1/320 second.

This isn't usually difficult, but at shorter focal lengths, when you're trying to shoot in low light, sometimes it's difficult to keep the shutter speed faster than 1/32 second when you're shooting with a focal length of 20mm.

So, do you need image stabilization?

You won't know for sure until you needed it and didn't have it.

If you get lenses that are stabilized, you can always turn the stabilization off.

But if you get lenses that aren't stabilized, you can't turn it on.
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Old Feb 19, 2009, 11:40 AM   #3
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The easy answer is just buy the camera with the kit lens. It's stabilized and a really good deal. For purchases down the road you can determine whether or not you need IS based on the photography you'll be doing with the new lens. But for just starting out - buy the camera with kit lens and save the IS / Non-IS for down the road.

follow-up - I recommend NOT buying store 'kits' that throw in additional lenses - those lenses are usually very poor. Just buy the standard kit Canon offers with the 18-55IS lens.
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Old Feb 19, 2009, 2:55 PM   #4
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How about a mono pod? Most of them will fold down real short and most bags have a way to attach one. I have one and it's great.
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Old Feb 21, 2009, 8:37 PM   #5
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You really don't see photographers carrying tripods much these days unless they are carrying a huge "honker stoncker" lense and doing some wildlife photography.

Sports guys are carrying around monopods (which are nice).

Depending on your photography, you may have little need for a tripod - however their so cheap these days it's always nice to have one around (specially for self-portraits!)
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Old Feb 22, 2009, 8:08 PM   #6
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Get the lens kit its pretty darn good
and i scooped a monopod for like 20 bucks
the monopod is easier to set up but you have to steady it
get one with a foot rest
good luck
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