A few specific questions before purchase

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by jvgig, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. jvgig

    jvgig TPF Noob!

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    I am finally about to pull the trigger on my first camera purchase. I was almost completely sold on the 40d, but since then, the xsi has come out which also has spot metering, but is a step behind the 40d in many other areas. I plan to use this camera on my summer trips to Italy and France, the Grand Cayman islands, and several other day/weekend trips up and down the east coast to document the areas I visit. I will also be taking sports photography, some portraits, and macro work. This upcoming school year I will be attending a film school, and to compliment my videos, I would like to be able to take artistic pictures to display at local art shows where I also display my paintings (hopefully I will even sell a few to help offset the costs). Therefore, the larger that I can print the better. I am a beginner when it comes to photography, but learn fast and am very artistically inclined which provides a solid foundation in lighting and composition. I am also signed up to take a b&w film photography course at my school next year. I plan to take about 10,000 pictures this upcoming summer, just for a volume reference. Is the extra cost of the 40d worth the features for my use?

    My budget does not allow me to purchase all the lenses I want right away. So, what focal lengths can I live without? For my Europe trip, I defidently want a wide angle and since I cannot afford a full frame sensor this year, I think that the Canon 10-20mm EF-S (or Sigma equivalent?) is the only lens that really would provide a wide angle. I will also like a telephoto zoom in the 70-300mm range. I was thinking the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM. Then for the middle range i was thinking either the Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM or EF-S 17-85MM f4-5.6 IS USM, but since I will probably buy a full frame sensor within 2-2.5 years, I do not want to invest too heavily in EF-S lenses. The EF-S would give me a continuous spectrum of focal lengths from 16-480mm, but the EF lens would last longer. The gap of 32-44mm seems like it may be an important one, but I dont know how many steps back I would have to take to make a 44mm equivalent to a 35mm. Any suggestions? I would like to cut costs as much as possible while retaining as many options and as much IQ as possible...after all, who doesn't. I am willing to buy used or go Sigma or another brand if the quality is there in order to save a few hundred.

    My budget for this camera purchase is a maximum of $3000 which will include everything: body, lenses, batteries, memory cards, tripod, flash (is this necessary up front?), etc. Eventually, as in the next few purchases, I will be purchasing a macro lens (probably in the 100mm range) and a 50mm 1.4, maybe some extension tubes. This will probably be in about 6-12months.

    Thanks for the direction. I think that I have read too much. I started just wanting a few items, but the list keeps increasing the more I read.
     
  2. uplander

    uplander TPF Noob!

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    Considering your budget I would ( if ti were me me) go this way
    The Canon 40D $1150.00
    Canon 70-200 f/4. L USM $550.00
    Canon EF 24 -70 f/2.8 L USM $1150.00

    $2850.00

    No looking back, great camera and great optics
    For a litlle more I would swap the 70-200 f/4. for the f/2.8 version.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I wouldn't worry too much about investing in EF-S lenses. If you are thinking about upgrading to FF in the future, you will either sell or keep the body that you buy now...so you can either sell or keep the EF-S lenses along with it.

    If you like wide angle photography, you will love the EF-S 10-22mm. I've heard good things about the Sigma 10-20mm, which is more affordable (I bought the Canon anyway, I love it).

    A agree with uplander about a 70-200mm lens. Much better than the 75-300mm.

    For a middle/normal range lens...I would recommend the EF-S 17-85mm IS. It's a great range on these cameras and a pretty decent lens. Only drawback is the max aperture. There are some great 24-XXmm lenses...but I find that 24mm just isn't wide enough on these cameras. If you don't mind switching to the wider lens, then maybe a longer lens would be OK. The 28-135mm IS, is a good walk around range and isn't too expensive.

    As uplander points out...F2.8 zoom lenses are really the way to go. They are expensive though, and many of them are big and heavy...which may be a concern if you are travelling a lot.

    As for which camera to get...I think the best thing would be to hold both cameras and play with them a bit. The biggest difference between the Rebel series and the XXD series...is the fit and feel of the body and the controls.
     
  4. lextalionis

    lextalionis TPF Noob!

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    I agree with everything said here too. Just to point out, I sold my XTi for the 30D primariarly for the fell and controls.

    I use the following 3 lenses and they server me very well: Canon EF 70-200 f/4L USM, Canon EF-S 17-55 f/2.8 IS USM, and Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM.

    If you need any high-resoloution samples, then stop by my lens photo review site.

    -Roy
     
  5. jvgig

    jvgig TPF Noob!

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    I don't think that I would miss the extra 100mm, but how important is IS? Most of the time I will be using a tripod or monopod, but for some wide life shots and on the run shots, I will not.

    Since I will be taking a lot of architecture in Europe, I feel that the wide angle if fairly critical at this point.

    Thanks
     
  6. Buszaj

    Buszaj TPF Noob!

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    I have the 70-200 f/4 non-IS, and it is good to handhold at 200mm at f/4 and a shutter speed of around 1/100. Any slower, and it starts getting trickier. Very good lens though.
     
  7. jvgig

    jvgig TPF Noob!

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    Will I need an external flash to start? I will likely never be able to set up an off camera flash, so would the benefit be worth the cost or would the faster lens be able to compensate well enough?
     

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