Lenses Help

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by TheHumphries, May 5, 2010.

  1. TheHumphries macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    #1
    Hi All,

    I was wondering if some people could help me out try to pick up a lens for my wife. Its our anniversary and then mother's day the following day so I best not screw this up! :)

    Hoping to do one really nice gift from me but I have no clue about lenses, camera, etc so i was hoping to get some help. If anyone could recommend a lens (or any other great accessory) for what she does, I would be grateful.

    She has a Rebel XS. She has a 50mm lens and a 18-55mm lens.

    She generally does family pictures, kid photos, etc.

    Thanks in advance for all the help!
     
  2. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    London
  3. TheHumphries thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2009
    #3
    Nothing too crazy but I really don't know costs, sub $500 I'd hope!
     
  4. telecomm macrumors 65816

    telecomm

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2003
    Location:
    Rome
    #4
    How about an external flash? I'm not too familiar with Canon's line, but a decent flash would fit in your budget, and it'd be very useful for indoor portraits, etc., as you can bounce the flash off a ceiling or wall to get much softer illumination.

    Something like this.
     
  5. toxic macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    #5
    if she finds the 18-55 too short for a lot of things, get a Canon 55-250 IS. I think it's $250 new.

    otherwise, there's the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 (not the VC version), Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4 OS HSM, and Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 Macro

    the 17-50 and 18-50 are about the same. I personally would get the Sigma, but most people get the Tamron. both of these don't have image stabilization, which is IS on Canon lenses, VC on Tamron, and OS on Sigma. however, they let in more light, so you have less need for a flash indoors for moving subjects. IS/VC/OS is to combat camera shake when handholding the camera. if she takes a lot of pictures of people moving around indoors, one of these might be the better option.

    the Sigma 17-70 has stabilization and HSM. HSM is basically just silent focusing. the extra reach (70mm instead of 50) is preferred for some people. I would buy this if she's more of a casual photographer (as in not an aspiring professional), since the OS and extra reach is pretty nice.
     
  6. AlaskaMoose macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2008
    Location:
    Alaska
    #6
    How about a lens such as EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM? It should cost under $500.00, and she can take macro shots as well as the photo of a deer at the backyard, pets, or even your portrait when you are tending the BBQ grill :)

    It's a very nice lens for taking pictures of kids from a distance, without being bothered by the camera near their faces.
     
  7. gnd macrumors 6502a

    gnd

    Joined:
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    At my cat's house
    #7
    If you can go up another 150$ you can get the 70-200mm f/4 L lens, which is one of the best lenses in this range. It currently goes for around 650$ new, or you can find a used one for maybe 100$ less.
     
  8. AlaskaMoose macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2008
    Location:
    Alaska
    #8
    I will second you on that choice. It's an excellent L lens, and cheaper than that at Amazon. I saw a price of $639.00 recently, and free S&H.
     
  9. funkboy macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2008
    Location:
    elsewhere
    #9
    Preface: Pretty much every female photographer I know, including two professionals, really will not put up with heavy gear unless the job absolutely requires it. Women just naturally have less arm strength than men do. Example: the FBI took this into account when choosing .40 S&W as its standard caliber vs. various .45 rounds in order to provide the lighter weapons and lower recoil this round allows to female agents.

    Two suggestions:

    - The new stabilized Canon 55-250 EF-S telephoto zoom is lightweight, inexpensive & great value for the money. If your kids play field sports, this is probably the way to go. B&H Photo and Adorama are the usual the places I buy Canon gear.

    - I've had a 20mm f/3.5 Voigtländer Color Skopar for a few weeks now and I take with with me just about everywhere. If you travel a lot or she's interested in expanding her artistic ability or doing street shooting, this is a great way to begin. It's manual-focus only, but as it's a 20mm, the hyperfocal distance is at less than 2 meters for almost all apertures, and the depth of field is great enough that it's pretty forgiving of focusing errors if you stop down to f/5.6 or more.

    The Voigtländer is currently the smallest & lightest electronic Canon-mount lens that can be considered a true wide-angle on crop-frame cameras like the Rebel series. CameraQuest is their US reseller. It's certainly a nice gift if she's looking to improve her technique; it's extremely well-made (no plastic anywhere, properly damped focus ring) and it looks & feels like something special. Cosina probably makes fewer EF-mount Color Skopars in a year than the number of lenses Canon's production lines churn out in one day.

    If she's not interested in learning the technical aspects of photography and just wants to make nice compositions & press the button, this is not the lens for you.

    Good luck.
     
  10. iSax1234 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #10
    Good choices for your wife:

    Tamron 25-75 f/2.8 - great all walk around lens and a great value

    Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 - great wide angle side of things same price as previous

    A bit over 500 bucks is the Canon 70-200 f/4l best value telephoto will be awesome and not to heavy.

    or

    A flash, the Canon 480 is like under 300 bucks and that would be fun for her to use
     
  11. iSax1234 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Location:
    Virginia
    #11
    Good choices for your wife:

    Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 - great all walk around lens and a great value

    Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 - great wide angle side of things same price as previous

    A bit over 500 bucks is the Canon 70-200 f/4l best value telephoto will be awesome and not to heavy.

    or

    A flash, the Canon 480 is like under 300 bucks and that would be fun for her to use
     
  12. gnd macrumors 6502a

    gnd

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    At my cat's house
    #12
    There used to be a female photographer on this forum whose gear consisted of 7D, 5DmkII, some fast and L glass and a tripod. Some women would carry anything for the ultimate image quality, just like male photographers. Arm strength doesn't really come into play until you start hand holding fast super telephoto zooms.
     
  13. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #13
    Actually, the .40 was chosen over the 10mm, and is simply a necked-down 10mm cartridge, earning it the nickname .40 Short & Wimpy. While the original FBI tests included .45 ACP and 9mm, the tester added his own 10mm to the tests with hand-loaded rounds that were less powerful than standard 10mm ammunition, and the FBI decided it liked the ballistics, so they asked S&W to develop a lighter-recoil cartridge based on those ballistics- the original FBI spec was actually for a large framed pistol based on a .45 frame, and S&W figured out they could go smaller and get the same ballistics on a small-framed pistol based on their 9mm frame- so the FBI was actually ready to accept a larger/heavier pistol- it was the recoil that was the major issue.

    Recoil has little to do with arm strength, it's mostly wrists with standard pistol shooting. The problem is that lots of recoil takes wrist strength to hold against, and female agents couldn't reliably handle the 10mm.

    I know at least one female who doesn't possess lots of arm strength who prefers a 1911-style large-frame .45 over a small Sig .40. Recoil from a slower round in a larger frame is better for lots of people. I suspect if the FBI had chosen a .45 platform that the recoil issue wouldn't have been as big a deal as it was with the 10mm.

    Interestingly enough, they still went with 10mm for their H&K MP-5 submachine guns.

    Paul
     
  14. funkboy macrumors regular

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    Apr 25, 2008
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    elsewhere
    #14
    Wow, you're obviously a lot closer to the source than I was

    The Pentagon guards seem to like their .40 S&W-chambered UMP 40 too :)
     
  15. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #15
    I remember the hoopla of the time. Personally, I thought it was all kind of dumb- I'd thought it would have been much, much cheaper/easier for them to just go with a 9mm +P load and purchase off the shelf.


    Personally, I'm a fan of .45 for an SMG, but the guy who's borrowing my 300mm f/4 used to have one of the 10mm MP5s in a roof mount of his FBI car.

    Paul
     

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