Range or Speed? (Help me pick a lens)

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Worsty, Mar 3, 2010.

  1. Worsty

    Worsty TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    So I have a dilemma I was hoping you would all assist me with.

    I recently was getting to set to buy a Sigma 50-150 f2.8. The theory was that it would act as my moderate-range tele with a nice bokeh for portraits, and complement my (Canon 7D) lens collection of 50mm f1.4, 15-85mm f3.5-5.6, 35mm f1.4, & 85mm f1.8.

    However, a recent craigslist ad in my area popped up with someone selling a (apparently top quality condition) Canon 35-350mm f3.5-5.6L for the exact price as the Sigma.

    Now I understand they are vastly different products, but I'm a relatively poor student and can't afford both at this time. On one hand, I want something fast that has some range and will deliver a decent bokeh. On the other hand, the flexibility of a 10x zoom with very good image quality reviews for a bargain price is very appealing also.

    Here's what I know about these two products:

    ====Sigma 50-150mm f2.8=====
    PROS:
    -Fast 2.8
    -Has a very useable range
    -Nice bokeh from 9-blade
    -Good build quality & product quality

    Cons:
    -Reportedly has front-focusing issues on some copies
    -150mm is only a moderate tele range
    -Sigma tends to lose value faster than Canon
    -No IS

    ====Canon 35-350mm F3.5-5.6L====
    Pros:
    -Epic 10x zoom range, for use as a solid walk-around lens
    -Legendary L series build quality & value
    -Relatively inexpensive compared to it's book value
    -Has the 72mm filter size that my 15-85 shares
    -Good compression from 300mm

    Cons:
    -Relatively slow lens
    -Sharpness does suffer overall for zoom range
    -Less exciting bokeh at 50-150 range than Sigma
    -Also no IS

    ---


    So that's about it. Anything you would like to add or what your choice would be, I would greatly appreciate hearing. I have a couple days to choose so I'm hoping to get a ton of feedback from the veterans here.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2003
    Messages:
    9,523
    Likes Received:
    344
    Location:
    North New Jersey, United States of America
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Unless you discuss the purpose driving such purchase, any suggestion anyone makes is utterly useless.....

    The sigma is useless to the bird photographer. The canon is useless for the indoor wedding photographer or indoor sports photographer.



    In my shoes, I often packed very fast primes (24L,50 f/1.4,85 f/1.8,135L) paired with zooms of long reach (24-105 + 100-400). I also owned the 24-70 + 70-200IS which in my mind was a compromise in both max aperture and range (albeit optically excellent). If I were to follow the same model (given you already have primes), I'd go with the 35-350L and use it as the general all around lens. Keep in mind that you should do your research and understand the cons/pros of the lens. One you missed is the old push pull zoom design that many either hate or like. Its an old design. It predates IS thus difficult to handhold at 350mm.


    Remember, your photography should drive your purchases not the other way around.
     
  3. Worsty

    Worsty TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Sorry? I suppose I could clarify if that will help.

    The problem is that I'm sort of multi-faceted. As a student I tend to do a diverse bit of photography with landscapes, nature shots, sporting events & architecture shots. However, where I make some money on the side comes from doing portraits & weddings.

    Ultimately I want something that is versatile and will see a lot of use. I'm leaning towards the 50-150 purely for speed, but then I remember all the uses of the huge 35-350 range and then I can't really decide.

    (Incidentally, I don't consider the push-pull zoom a plus or negative, it's just something that is. It doesn't bother me, nor am I especially in love with it.)
     
  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,456
    Likes Received:
    12,797
    Location:
    USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    The 35-350 is positively huge for its focal length range. It's very large, and quite slow,aperture wise. A 300mm f/5.6 lens will be very hindering under many conditions. The Sigma by comparison, is smaller,lighter, and is two f/stops faster.

    In my book, the 35-350 would be a very poor choice as a portrait/wedding lens, and also very poor for indoor sports or action work: f/5.6 is simply too limiting for many situations. If you want something as you say that is "relatively fast," the Sigma will win the day.
     
  5. JimmyO

    JimmyO TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    Messages:
    2,132
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    NJ
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The 50-150 is probably the better choice. Id hate lugging the canon around. Unless your shooting birds or serious sports 350mm is insane. I love my tokina 50-135mm f/2.8 as its smaller and light enough to stay on my camera (unlike a 70-200mm) and the range is ALOT more usable then a 70-200 for walk around stuff IMO, much better suited for a crop sensor. What you need to ask yourself is "Do i really need that much reach" and if not go for the sigma (or as i recomend, the tokina)
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

50-150