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Old Oct 11, 2010, 6:36 PM   #1
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Default Picked up Sony A550. Now i need a Lens

I have been reading and viewing these forums for a while now and I have finally made the plunge and bought a Sony A550 Body. I currenly have the old Minolta AF 28-85mm and the massive 300mm from my Dads old Maxxum kit. I have been testing these out for about a week and so far, not bad. These things weigh a ton and I am looking for a nice walking lens to go with my 550. Uses would be vacation shots with my girlfriend, nature shots, cars, and maybe some sports. Budget is around $200-$400 range.

Is there a Lens that truly captures this camera's features best?

Thank you and any help would be great.
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Old Oct 11, 2010, 8:02 PM   #2
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scottmc-

Welcome to the Forum. We're pleased that you dropped by. Congratulations on your new A550.

Several suggestions: The Sigma 17-70mm or the Sigma 18-125mm if you want a little more zoom. Since the A550 has IS built into the camera body, you want the older non OS versions of these lenses. www.KEH.com recently had a used Sigma 18-125mm non OS lens in the Sony mount for around $150.00. KEH is a very highly respected e-tailer.

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Old Oct 11, 2010, 8:18 PM   #3
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From what I've heard the best basic lens for that price is the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 (non VC) which run $350-$450. As for telephoto, the Minolta 70-210mm f/4 is revered and is good if you can get it on craigslist or ebay(although theyve been running pretty high on there); there's also the Tamron 70-300mm Di which is the best you can get ~$300 and runs for less than $100 used on eBay on a good day. I use it, and the macro function is very handy.
As for all around, the Sigma/Tamron/Sony 18-250mm is apparantly comparable to the nikkor 18-200mm, which is very popular and good lens. However, you'll find many people on here disparage the all-in-one solution. I personally would find it a good vacation/casual lens, but if you want the best quality, go for a two part kit.
If you have anything left over, the Minolta 50mm f1.7 is a good fast lens for ~$90 on eBay. But the 17-50 makes it a bit redundant, although not totally.
Note: I'm pretty new at this too, but since I am, I've read a LOT about it, and these reccomendations seem to be the general consensus.
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Old Oct 11, 2010, 8:19 PM   #4
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Oh, Sarah beat me. Must have been while I was typing.
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Old Oct 11, 2010, 10:31 PM   #5
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Mr. Pete-

I use the Tamron 18-250mm, on my A500, as a great single lens solution that is ideal for a vacation lens where you want to pack very lightly. I am an old Nikon shooter and used to shoot with the Nikon 18-200mmVR lens. I actually think that the Tamron 18-250mm lens has better image quality.

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Old Oct 11, 2010, 11:18 PM   #6
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The Minolta 28-85mm zoom lens is a very good walk around lens. I just got one myself and like it a lot. Yes, it is a bit heavy because is all metal and not plastic. On the other hand 28mm on the low end may not be wide enough for landscape shooting.
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Old Oct 12, 2010, 6:28 AM   #7
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Not a bad one in the bunch. And while you'll always get better image quality from multiple lenses of less ambitious zoom ranges, if you must have 'jack-of-all-trades-and-master-of-none' lens, the Tamron (and the Sony equivalent) are as good as it gets.
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Old Oct 12, 2010, 8:42 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the feedback. I am still very green to all the lens types but I will come around. I do like being able to go wide so maybe the 100mm and under would work best for me then I can grow into multiple Lens.

Question: I also have a Tokina AF 70-210 from our vintage collection however the a550 doesnt recognize this Lens. Should this lens work?? it is the correct mount and feels lighter and would like to try out this range of zoom.

thanks again all.
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Old Oct 13, 2010, 2:07 AM   #9
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The Tokina - SD AF 70-210 F4-5.6 gets good reviews at Dyxum.com. It doesn't ever sell for very much, probably because it's in the shadow of the very popular Minolta Beercan. It should work on your A550. Have you checked the condition of the 5 electrical contacts ont the lens? You might try cleaning them with a pencil eraser. Does it operate on any older camera bodies you might have? You may need a chip upgrade. I have a Tokina 100-300mm f/4.0 that needed to go in for an upgrade to be fully compatible, but at least it worked a little before it.
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Old Oct 13, 2010, 11:16 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCav View Post
The Tokina - SD AF 70-210 F4-5.6 gets good reviews at Dyxum.com. It doesn't ever sell for very much, probably because it's in the shadow of the very popular Minolta Beercan. It should work on your A550. Have you checked the condition of the 5 electrical contacts ont the lens? You might try cleaning them with a pencil eraser. Does it operate on any older camera bodies you might have? You may need a chip upgrade. I have a Tokina 100-300mm f/4.0 that needed to go in for an upgrade to be fully compatible, but at least it worked a little before it.
As far as i can tell it has never been used and is in like new condition. I dont have it in front of me right now but when i get home i will take a look at the contacts. I do have a Maxxum but batteries were left in it for about 20 years and acid has leaked out onto the battery contacts. I am nervous to put batteries in it to test it.

how much did that cost to get the lens chip upgraded?
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