Should I buy a Canon Rebel?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by radlations, Mar 15, 2010.

  1. radlations

    radlations TPF Noob!

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    I've been wanting to buy a Canon Rebel XS for a while now. I normally use a powershot S3, mostly point and shoot stuff. I want to upgrade because I want the feel and high quality pictures of a DSLR. I'm a student in college and I study biology. I am not a professional photographer.

    I do wildlife photography and landscape. More wildlife than landscape. I also do macroshots for fun. Majority of the time I leave the setting in auto because I dont feel like adjusting Fstops/shutterspeed and whatnot while I'm taking pictures of animals. I've never owned a DSLR before but I've used SLR film cameras before in the 2 photography classes I took in highschool.


    So I've done a bit a research and I think I might go with this approach.


    Canon Rebel XS body only for 400$
    Tamron 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 with Vibration Compensation 550$
    - I like this do it all lens. I wont have to carry more than one lens and it minimizes the chance of dust getting in the body.

    as apposed to the Canon Rebel XS with 18-55 for 500$
    Telephoto Zoom lens something between 50-300mm for about 300$

    Is this a good approach?
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2010
  2. Big Mike

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

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    Welcome to the forum.

    If you want an 'all in one' type lens, then that might be a good option for you. However, keep in mind that to make a lens with such a wide zoom range (not mot make it huge & really heavy), they have to make compromises with image quality. So while it is still probably going to be better than your S3, it will be far from what the XS is capable of (with a good quality lens).
    But the good news is that you will always have the option to purchase/use a different lens in the future.
     
  3. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If that is your intention, I will suggest also look into getting a quality lens. I do not mean the super zoom lens you mentioned is junk. As mentioned by Bigmike, it is made with convenience in mind instead of image quality. It is good for what it is for.

    After all, one of the main reasons for getting a DSLR is we can use different lenses! :)
     
  4. radlations

    radlations TPF Noob!

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    Yes but I dont want to carry an extra lens or have to switch to one when im out taking pictures of flowers and spot a black bear in the distance.

    I dont know if you do wildlife photography, but most animals don't pose long enough for you to adjust fstops or change lens.


    Okay so I'm starting to want to go with the 18-55mm route and then maybe pick up a 55-300mm. Are there any lens in this range?
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2010
  5. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to a very expensive world!
    Landscape and macro arn't so bad, but wildlife is one of the more expensive areas to get into with photography - sadly long good lenses cost money :(

    For starting out I would personally avoid the Tamron lens - its a good one lens does all, but its going to be limiting you at the long end and be softer. I would say look at something like the Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 APO macro (make sure you get the APO and not the older version of this lens without APO since the APO is a noticably sharper lens - especially at the long end where you need it).
    It's a budget lens and is softer between 200 and 300mm but is good for its price and also gives you a good close focus distance. It's call macro by marketing but is really only half life size in macro terms - so for flowers and similar sized subjects (dragonflies/butterflies) its good but for really small stuff it just does not have the magnification (in my experience this was also the strongest area of performance for the older version of this lens).

    It's a good place to start and you can then expand off as and fi you get more budget and interest. If you do go for it though you will need to get the kit lens as well though since 70mm is very long and too long for a lot of stuff.
     
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I know a photographer who tripped over a fox whilst shooting macro - never got a chance for a shot cause he had the wrong lens on .:lol:

    The limitation of having to change lenses is something you have to learn to live with if you go the rout of DSLRs - the bonus is what you can achive in image quality as well as capture features (superior AF and a lot of other nice manual controls over the point and shoots - even the bridge cameras don't offer as much). Many of those manual controls might sound very complex and confusing now but spend time with the gear and you will soon find many very quick and easy to use.
     
  7. radlations

    radlations TPF Noob!

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    Thank for all your replies.


    I am looking at the Sigma 70-300 APO lens overread mentioned. Its looking great :]

    But could someone quickly explain macro photography to me? I always thought in order to do macro photography you had to have a low 1st focal length number. So 70mm would be a bit high?

    Which lens is better the Sigma 70-300APO or the Canon 55-250 with IS

    Don't you need image stabilization when using a telephoto lens?
     
  8. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I am not a wildlife shooter, so when I spot a black bear while I am taking flower photos. I will not change my lens neither but run as fast as I can. :p (Just joking)


    As for the lens question. It depends on the budget, they have lenses that cover wilder focal length range.

    For $500-$600 dollars range, these are not bad

    Canon Lens: Zooms - Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM (Tested) - SLRgear.com!
    Canon Lens: Zooms - Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM (Tested) - SLRgear.com!
     
  9. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    If you look at a true macro lens the focal length has no effect on the image it produces when at its closest focusing point - the 70mm macro, 65mm macro and 150mm macro I have all produce exactly the same image when focused close (or in the case of the 65mm set to 1:1)

    This is because true macro is a magnifiaction factor of 1:1 that is - the subject as reflected on the sensor by the lens is the same size as it is in real life. If its a 2mm bug its 2mm on the sensor.
    About this much of a 2p coin for an idea:
    [​IMG]

    The focal length however affects how far away you can that that shot. A 70mm lens has to be much closer to the subject than the 150mm and that comes into play with insects - the closer you are the more chance you have of spooking them and they fly off. After that you're left with image quality and other features of the lens (eg focusing motors and such). Image quality is pretty much standard across the board for dedicated macro lenses - its high and you won't notice much working difference between them.

    EDIT
    Remember that is true 1:1 macro - the 70-300mm sigma (the macro on that lens is actually between the 200 and 300mm points) is a 1:2 - half life size. So images rather similar to these:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/24534478@N04/sets/72157613056927221/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/24534478@N04/3235272604/in/set-72157613056718373/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/24534478@N04/3235277616/in/set-72157613056718373/
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/24534478@N04/3234457351/in/set-72157613098192470/
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2010
  10. pbelarge

    pbelarge TPF Noob!

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    Radlations

    Do you own a tripod?
     
  11. radlations

    radlations TPF Noob!

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    No I do not own a tripod and would not enjoy carrying one while hiking/backpacking.
     
  12. cfusionpm

    cfusionpm TPF Noob!

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    I'm selling my XTi along with the EF-S 17-85mm IS USM lens if you are interested. It's a great starter camera that I just grew out of, and the lens is a good step up from a standard kit lens.

    The camera is probably about as capable as an XS, as the XS was a step down in functionality compared to the XSi (which was the XTi's replacement).

    The image stabilzation and wide range of the 17-85 would make a great walk around lens. The focal range is about the best compromise you can get without introducing too much distortion (like the 18-200mm or 18-135 lenses).

    Let me know if you are interested. :)
     

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