Lens advise

Discussion in 'Digital Cameras' started by Joel Dorfan, Aug 11, 2005.

  1. Joel Dorfan

    Joel Dorfan Guest

    This type of question has been asked many times before and I have learnt a
    great deal from the answers. However here is my situation.

    I have bought a Canon 350D body only.
    I have a Nikon 7900 7MP point and shoot whose results I have been very happy
    with both closeup portrait and zoom while in the bush taking pics of wild
    animals. I have used all of the available manual modes possible with this

    I want to get one general purpose lens for the 350D and the one I am leaning
    towards is the 18-200 from either Tamron or Sigma.
    I have read much about the softness at various focal lengths, and slow speed
    (6.3) at full zoom etc. etc.

    Given the fact that the 7900 has produced decent results for me, is it safe
    to assume that the 18-200's (even with the various reported problems)
    attached to the 350D will far out perform anything that the 7900 can do
    across the whole 18-200 spectrum?

    My older 35mm EOS had the older model 28-105 lens which was OK although one
    always could do with a bit extra zoom. Given this, the Canon 17-85 IS (lots
    of CA, distortion and softness also reported) or the Tamron 24-135 would
    also do the job very well but at $600 vs $400 for the 18-200 and $350 for
    the 24-135 it seems like a no brainer to go for the 18-200 or 24-135.

    I dont see myself as one to carry more than one lens.

    Given the above, please help me settle on my ideal walk around lens.


    Joel Dorfan, Aug 11, 2005
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  2. Joel Dorfan

    C Wright Guest

    IMO asking a lens, from any manufacturer, to go from a true wide-angle to a
    true telephoto is asking too much! It will be soft at either the tele side
    or the wide side, and probably both. You don't say what types of photos
    that you prefer taking so it is difficult to make a recommendation but I
    would go with either a wide to normal zoom if you tend to shoot more wide
    angle shots or a normal to tele if you find you tend to the tele side.
    If a lot of your shots are "people" shots I would lean toward the normal to
    tele lenses.
    C Wright, Aug 11, 2005
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  3. Joel Dorfan

    Joel Dorfan Guest

    Thanks for the input.
    The 7900 belongs to work and I just have the use of it.

    I understand the compromises of lenses with such wide ranges hence the
    question relating to weather or not it would be better than the 7900.

    I would did not buy DSLR for the extra MP but for many other reasons. The
    fact is that I already have it and would like to make the best single lens

    Joel Dorfan, Aug 11, 2005
  4. Joel Dorfan

    Eatmorepies Guest

    As I tell anyone who listens - the lenses to buy are the L series. But they
    are very expensive. When you see the results you can see why.

    If you go to

    you can get lots of advice/reviews. I go with the 24 - 70 mm f2.8L as the
    best walk round lens. Then look at a 70 - 200mm for a telephoto.

    If you want an non-L (cheaper) lens then the 28-105 f3.5/4.5 is quite good
    when stopped down to f5.6. But consider this; why buy and expensive body and
    put a cheap lens on it? The lens is the most important bit.

    Eatmorepies, Aug 12, 2005
  5. Per Frank ess:
    Lack of shutter lag is a pretty big thing to me.
    (PeteCresswell), Aug 12, 2005
  6. Joel Dorfan

    Mike Warren Guest

    I don't recommend the mega zooms on a DSLR. I tried the
    Tamron 18-200.

    Here are some comparison shots with a Panasonic FZ20:

    Tamron 18-200: Maximum wide angle, full frame reduced

    Tamron 18-200: Maximum wide angle, partial Crop at 100%

    Tamron 18-200: Maximum telephoto, full frame reduced

    Tamron 18-200: Maximum telephoto, partial Crop at 100%

    FZ20: Maximum wide angle, full frame reduced

    FZ20: Maximum wide angle, partial Crop at 100%

    FZ20: Maximum telephoto, full frame reduced

    FZ20: Maximum telephoto, partial Crop at 100%

    Mike Warren, Aug 12, 2005
  7. Joel Dorfan

    Ben Thomas Guest

    And focus speed (which contributes to the perceived shutter lag).

    And noise.

    Ben Thomas - Melbourne, Australia
    The essentials: Kodak DX6490, Nikon D70, Canon i9950, Pioneer DVR-109,
    Hitachi W37-PD2100, DGTEC 2000A, Harmon/Kardon AVR4500, Denon DVD-2800,
    Whatmough Synergy, Sony Ericsson K700i, Palm LifeDrive.

    Opinions, conclusions, and other information in this message that do not
    relate to the official business of my employer shall be understood as neither
    given nor endorsed by it.
    Ben Thomas, Aug 12, 2005
  8. (a) P&S cameras (in theory, anyway) have less shutter lag than dSLRs. It's
    only the AF that's the problem. (Well, some have glacial startup times.) (b)
    While lenses with built-in motors (USM and the like) are _fast_, lenses
    without (e.g. the Tamron 28-75/2.8) aren't all that fast.
    The bottom line: It's the image quality, stupid.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Aug 12, 2005
  9. Joel Dorfan

    Colin D Guest

    Don't believe all you read about the 17-85 IS USM lens. It's not fast,
    f/4 to f/5.6, about the same as most zooms. I have had this lens for
    nearly a year now, and I can say that it is very sharp. I do
    competition quality prints up to 13x19 from its images. There is some
    CA and some barrel distortion at the short end - like (and no worse
    than) most zooms - but software exists (like the free PTlens plug-in for
    PS) that fixes both those problems. And the 5:1 zoom range is better
    than most, apart from the 28-200 or 28-300 types, but they do tend to
    suffer from the extreme range unless you head for an L lens. ($$$$$)

    Colin D.
    Colin D, Aug 12, 2005
  10. Mike Warren wrote:

    Thanks for posting those. Most interesting to see the better optics on
    the noisier sensor, and how they compare at 1:1 viewing and over the full
    frame. What is the weight comparison?

    David J Taylor, Aug 12, 2005
  11. Joel Dorfan

    Mike Warren Guest

    The Tamron lens is a waste of money if quality is important. I don't
    understand why anyone using a dSLR would bother with it. If you just
    want to take snapshots a ZLR is much friendlier to use.

    I also compared it to the Canon S2. The S2 wasn't as good as the FZ20
    but was still better than the Tamron 18-200. I printed one picture from
    the 18-200 at 6x4 and the CA was still obvious. It wasn't just a faulty
    sample either. I tried two of them.
    I don't quite get you here. The lens + D70S is much heavier than the

    Mike Warren, Aug 12, 2005
  12. Just to know what equipment can produce what quality of pictures, and what
    the trade-offs might be between cost, quality and bulk.

    That's all.

    David J Taylor, Aug 12, 2005
  13. Rob,
    Did you buy this kit from a brick and mortar retailer? If you did, I
    was wondering; if you had put the Sigma 70-300 on the camera at the
    store and taken a shot, do you think you'd have noticed this lens's poor
    performance? What I'm trying to determine is how beneficial is it to
    have a camera shop you can go to for a hands on test and just how much
    can you really find out from a hands on test. For example, can you
    expect most dedicated camera shops, like for example; Ritz, to print you
    out a copy if you're trying to decide on a camera or lens? Do places
    like Ritz employ knowledgeable people or are they generally just clerks?

    Paul Schilter, Aug 12, 2005
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