Novice question, buying lenses for Canon

Discussion in 'Canon' started by Matt, Jul 17, 2004.

  1. Matt

    Matt Guest

    Thanks to Dave and Tony for helpful responses about the Rebel Ti.

    In searching for this Camera I have seen several impressive offers
    from EBAY sellers and others. For between 300 to 350 you get the
    camera and accessories including a couple of Sigma zoom lenses.

    I called a local dealer to see if they offered anything comparable,
    and they said no they could not match the deal, but the the sigma
    lenses offered were very inferior to the Canon lens the camera would
    come with. On paper the lenses offered seem to have great
    capabilities.

    He points out that the camera body merely records what comes through
    the lens, and so the lens is far more important.

    Would you be happy with these Sigma lenses?

    So... here's the question:

    choice a )Canon 28-90 mm II (S) f4-5.6 lens

    choice b ) Sigma 100-300mm F4.5-6.7 DL AF Zoom Telephoto Lens plus
    Sigma 28-80mm F3.5-5.6 HF AF Mini Zoom Lens


    What's the best value? My goal in purchasing this camera is to be
    able to better quality photos in a variety of situations, mostly
    outdoor. I can't get into the upper ended equippment that costs
    hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

    Matt
     
    Matt, Jul 17, 2004
    #1
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  2. Matt

    Jeremy Guest


    Agreed. The photographer's primary tool is his lens. It is the lens that
    collects the light, bends it and focuses it (hopefully) exactly at the film
    plane. The lens will always be your major limiting factor. If the
    sharpness is inferior, or if there are other aberrations, you will have to
    live with images that are less than the best.

    Only you can decide what level of quality you need. If you are shooting 4x6
    prints, you have a lot more flexibility in selecting a lens. If you intend
    to produce larger prints, lens quality is more important.

    If money is a problem, you might consider buying excellent used equipment.

    My own take on this is that I'd rather have one really good lens, that
    produces consistently excellent images, than have an assortment of mediocre
    lenses.
     
    Jeremy, Jul 17, 2004
    #2
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  3. Maybe these are not the answers to the questions you asked, but they are
    things to consider.

    Not all sellers of equipment are equal. Many mail order outfits are not
    totally honest. A lot of people have had problems. Be sure to check out
    anyone you are considering buying from before you buy. B&H is one company
    that I have dealt with and been happy with as have many others here.

    Consider that your local dealer is likely to have higher prices, their
    cost is usually higher, and they are going to offer service that you can't
    get on EBay. Locally you can pick up and feel how the camera fits your
    hand. You can easily ask questions, even after the sale. So while you may
    pay more, you also get more. Pick the seller that has the most for you.

    Most third party lenses are not equal in quality to the original
    manufacturer's lenses. However remember that Canon like many other
    manufacturers offers more than one line of lenses some better than others.
    Sigma seems to be well known for their less than top quality lenses. Not
    everyone will ever see the difference between their worse lens and Canon's
    best. If you are critical about results, then I suggest sticking with
    Canon. Canon's worse lens is better than most third party lenses. IMO.

    Good Luck
     
    Joseph Meehan, Jul 17, 2004
    #3
  4. Matt

    Tony Spadaro Guest

    I wouldn't touch a Sigma lens with a ten foot pole. I've owned two, and will
    never get ripped off a third time.
     
    Tony Spadaro, Jul 17, 2004
    #4
  5. Matt

    Bob Guest

    what do you think about this...it goes over the price range of $300-350 by
    $40 maybe...
    for about $240 from bhphotovideo.com get choice a, then if you don't like
    the lens it came with (according to reviews you wont), sell the lens on ebay
    for $80 now you are out only $160 total then spend $230 for ef 28-105mm
    f/3.5-4.5 II USM which is rated to be a much better lens...if everything
    goes like that, apart from shipping, you will have spent $390...

    that is the best way to go with the lenses...unless you have more to spend,
    then get a mix of primes or some L zooms :)

    don't worry about telephoto, it costs a lot to make nice telephoto pictures
    afaik ... you will probably want a good lens and a tripod or a IS
    lens...these are not cheap...

    If you are using an slr then you are doing it for image quality...period,
    because otherwise you would stick with point and shoot, because it is
    cheaper, faster (because only 1 lens, less settings, etc), and unless you
    buy decent lenses, it may very well be better...a bad lens on the best
    camera can result in a bad shot.


    check out these reviews.

    on the 28-105 f3.5-4.5
    http://www.fredmiranda.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=206&sort=7&thecat=27

    on the 28-90 f4-5.6
    http://www.fredmiranda.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=8&sort=7&thecat=27

    on the sigmas, well, fredmiranda.com didn't have reviews...but I am sure
    they are junk...why? because even sigma charges prices like canon on their
    good lenses...so not all sigma lenses are cheap and soft and slow, but the 2
    that you are looking at are, and you can buy them both for $140 on
    ebay...and paying $140 for two ZOOM lenses is almost a guarantee of bad
    quality. Sigma makes a 100-300 f/4 that by all accounts is a very good
    lens..but also costs $800...so you can see, the lenses you are looking at
    are super cheap...they are designed to appeal to people who are looking for
    a deal that is "too good to be true", and yes, a lot of people have fallen
    for this kind of bad marketing...I bought a $30 tripod...at least I only
    lost $30.

    I also wanted to confirm that B&H is the only place to shop online...every
    other vendor I dealt with had some problem, but so far after a few orders
    from b&h, I've not had a problem. There prices are, as far as I can tell,
    within 5% of anyone else's.
     
    Bob, Jul 17, 2004
    #5
  6. Matt

    Mark M Guest

    Stay away from Sigma if you are interested in long-term use and quality.
    Those I've known with Sigmas have been alarmingly disappointed.
    I can personally confirm the awful stories about their internal
    construction--especially their cheapiest versions--which you are
    considering.

    Canon's very good 28-105 USM can be had new for around $200.
    FAR better choice.

    The 100-300 you mention is utter crap.
    -Better to buy used Canon for similar $$ and FAR better quality.
     
    Mark M, Jul 18, 2004
    #6
  7. Matt

    Mark M Guest

    Here's a link to the lens ($209)on B&H:
    It's the imported box, but Canon will honor warranty on these unlike most
    other manufacturers.
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=206434&is=GREY

    USA box is $229
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=206434&is=USA

    -Mark M
     
    Mark M, Jul 18, 2004
    #7
  8. Matt

    Skip M Guest

    Actually, none of the above... (big help, huh?)
    The best bargain in Canon zooms is the 28-105 f3.5-4.5 USM. It has true
    "ring" USM, so the focus is fast and quiet, and the front element doesn't
    rotate, essential if you are using filters that have an orientation, like
    polarizing or graduated filters. It's a little more expensive, but not
    much, $229.95 vs $80 for the others. Oops, I guess it is a lot more
    expensive. But it is a lens that you will continue to be happy with for a
    long time, much sharper than the lenses you mention, not to mention its evil
    twin, the 28-105 f4-5.6, not a good lens. Canon's 100-300 f4.5-5.6 runs
    $279, their 75-300 comes in at $159, vs the Sigma at $129, I'd go for the
    one of the Canon lenses, were I you. In fact, I did, I bought my wife the
    Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5 and 100-300 f4.5-5.6 for her Elan, and she's been very
    happy with them. You know you can't buy crappy lenses for your wife, and
    get good ones for yourself, so that's a pretty good testimonial, there. Of
    course, she's been casting covetous eyes at my 28-135 IS, so that could be
    coming to an end... ;-)
    By the way, the absolute best bargain in lenses is the Canon 50mm f1.8.
    Very sharp, and very cheap, under $80. Cheaply built, too, but don't be put
    off by its plastic mount and light weight. It is a great lens to have in
    your bag when lens speed is all that will get you that shot!
     
    Skip M, Jul 18, 2004
    #8
  9. Matt

    Skip M Guest

    One thing I didn't mention, Sigma isn't known for its stellar quality and
    quality control on their cheaper lenses. There seems to be wide variations
    between the best and the worst of any lens model, and they ain't all that
    great to start with. And there are, or at least were, issues with Sigma
    lenses working on subsequent generations of Canon bodies. Other mfrs, like
    Tamron and Tokina, aren't subject to that.
     
    Skip M, Jul 18, 2004
    #9
  10. Matt

    Matt Guest

    Hey, what great information I am getting here. I've decided to pass
    on this package deal with the Sigma zooms, and I like the idea that I
    can convert the Canon lens to a higher quality model if I feel the
    need. It makes a lot of sense. Thanks to all of you who have weighed
    in on this one. The consitent message is that I should avoid low end
    optics in come-on packages.

    I'll keep reading this group.

    Matt
     
    Matt, Jul 19, 2004
    #10
  11. Matt

    Jeremy Guest


    And be sure to run if you are ever tempted to buy a camera with a Quanterray
    lens as a replacement for the OEM kit lens, too!

    Quanterrays make excellent doorstops, though.
     
    Jeremy, Jul 19, 2004
    #11
  12. Matt

    Skip M Guest

    Just an addendum, Quantarays are largely made by Sigma...
     
    Skip M, Jul 20, 2004
    #12
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