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Old Apr 17, 2006, 4:28 PM   #1
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A few months ago, I bought a D50 kit (body and the Nikkor 18-55). I'd just stepped up from a Panasonic Lumix FZ20, and this is my first SLR, either film or digital. I'm looking for lenses to compliment my 18-55 kit lens. Thing is, I keep hearing that the lenses I'm looking at (as I'm on a budget) aren't sharp enough, fast enough, etc. I've taken a look @ the Nikkor 50mm 1.8 (the exception, which everyone seems to love), the Nikkor 55-200 and 70-300, etc. All lenses under about $250. Compared to what I'm coming from, the 18-55 is a pro lens, in my mind. I have absolutely no complaints about optical quality, etc (although I wish it were faster and could focus more closely)In other words, really, is a beginner/amateur REALLY going to notice the lack of sharpness in a $150-300 lens of decent quality?
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Old Apr 17, 2006, 5:24 PM   #2
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It's unlikely you'll really notice. It depends on what you want to use the photos for at 4x5 you're less likely to notice the quality than at 10x8.

Most decent camera shops will let you try a lens before you buy. Take your camera take a few shots then go home and check out the pictures before you comit.
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Old Apr 17, 2006, 5:26 PM   #3
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You most likely will not notice. Many lens dificiencies are only noticeable at larger print sizes or when photographing highly detailed subjects. Also, most lenses are quite sharp when stopped down (around f/8 to f/11). Higher priced lenses do have better optics, but also more bells and whistles such as constant aperatures, VR, etc which make them more functional in tougher shooting conditions such as low light. They also have better build qualtity. All the plusses are important to pros, but as an amateur, the kit lenses will serve you well. They are a great bargain.
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Old Apr 17, 2006, 5:47 PM   #4
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18-55 is very sharp when shootig with apertures f8 to f16 and very usable with all other apertures,
i tradeded mine away mainly because poor mechanical quality and that chromatic aberration i hate.

None of the cheap zooms is significantly better that the 18-55 so if you want a quality in low price then the prime is the way to go.
Only problem is that 50mm prime is bit too long for many indoor situations and ~30mm prime lenses are not cheap.

I bought Tamron 28-75 f2.8 to replace kit lens as it offers great performance in reasonable price,
however that left the wide end uncovered so later on i had to invest to Tokina 12-24 f4(despite the CA).
DSLR:S are quite dangerous as they can cause continuos addiction in new lenses and accessories.

Currently there are just two prime lenses that i would want; Sigma 30mm f1.4 and Micro Nikkor 105mm f2.8 VRII
neither is cheap but both offer some great abilities that the zoom lenses just cant match.

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Old Apr 17, 2006, 7:20 PM   #5
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Dlatu, read my 2 comments on this thread. They apply to you big time.


In short, only buy good glass but photography is about more than the latest lens .

Dlatu1983 wrote:
Thing is, I keep hearing that the lenses I'm looking at (as I'm on a budget) aren't sharp enough, fast enough, etc.I've taken a look @ the Nikkor 50mm 1.8 (the exception, which everyone seems to love),...
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Old Apr 18, 2006, 10:21 AM   #6
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I have been a professional photographer for over 53+ years, and I am still active and enjoying my cameras. As an Instructor in Digital Photography for our state university, I have a rather different philosophy.Rather than chastize, I feel that it is important to encourage, support and to help others to learn.

Benefits have also come to me through my teaching. As I have taught over the years, the need to be clear and upbeat has taught me many good lessons as well. Praise and encouragement go a long way toward helping others make their start as well.

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