looking for a zoom lens for my canon t2i (mostly for car racing)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Diddiyo, Sep 4, 2011.

  1. Diddiyo macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    central jersey
    #1
    i'm getting kind of tired of the 18-55mm kit lens of my canon t2i. i've been to a couple of grand-am and ALMS races, and while the shots itself aren't bad with the kit lens, most of the time i just can't get close enough to the action to get a close-up shot during the race. so i'm looking for an upgrade. a good all-around lens so i don't have to swap lenses all the time. i was hoping to find something good for say $500 - $700 if possible. i usually take panning shots free-handed. obviously a 2.8 f/stop would be great but it gets very pricey in that range...

    here are three lenses i have come up with so far.

    Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens - $495

    Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM Telephoto Zoom Lens - $674

    Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG HSM II Macro Zoom Lens - almost $800...

    anybody input is appreciated. thanks in advance.
     
  2. neutrino23 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2003
    Location:
    SF Bay area
    #2
    None of these seems to be a bad choice. A few years back I recommended the following for a friend who is heavily in to cars.

    Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG Macro
    http://www.sigmaphoto.com/shop/70-300mm-f4-56-apo-dg-macro-sigma

    He has been very happy with it. This is probably a little less quality than you are thinking of. I mention it to confirm your choice of focal length. I have the same lens. It is quite good at around f/8. It gets soft towards 300mm. It doesn't have image stabilization.
     
  3. Kebabselector macrumors 68030

    Kebabselector

    Joined:
    May 25, 2007
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    #3
    Why not have a look at the EF-S 55-250 IS lens, whilst it's a little slow at the long end (same as the 70-300 though!) optically it's not a bad lens.
     
  4. dcains macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2007
    #4
    No question - the 70-200/4L will have the quickest and most accurate AF. Also the best image quality.
     
  5. mackmgg macrumors 65816

    mackmgg

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2007
    #5
    The 70-200mm f/4L has the best image quality. Plus, it's the fastest at the long end. Another great thing is that the f/4L only gets marginally sharper as you stop down, because the wide open performance is so great. With the other lenses, you'll need to be at at least f/6 or f/8 before getting the highest quality shots.
     
  6. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #6
    Consider buying a good sturdy tripod, the cheap Bogen/Manfrotto gimbal head and renting a 300/2.8 or hand-hold a rented 70-200 f/2.8. Spend a day or so practicing panning at a slow enough shutter speed to show wheel movement.

    Paul
     
  7. fcortese macrumors demi-god

    fcortese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Big Sky country
    #7
    I agree with compuwar that a good tripod would be helpful if not critical in the type of panning shots you are looking to use it for. I have the 70-300L f4-5.6 IS USM which is out of the price range you are looking for but which has a IS2 mode made just for panning. However, with a stable tripod and head made for panning you would not need that particular feature. so of the lenses you listed the 70-200 (coupled with the crop facto of the t2i) should do you well. I would go with the L lens over any other. If you find you need to reach for more closer action then investing in an extender/teleconvertor may may be something to think about.
     
  8. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Location:
    London
    #8
    I'd go for the 70-200 f/4. It's served me well. This was taken with mine on my old 400D.

    [​IMG]

    It's got enough reach for most tracks, is very sharp and fast enough for day-time use whilst being light enough to easily hand hold.
     
  9. Diddiyo thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    central jersey
    #9
    thanks for all your help everybody!

    i found a gently used 70-200mm f/4L on craigslist and picked it up just now. i'm going on a short trip this weekend (detroit + cedar point) so we'll see how it goes. :)
     
  10. mtbdudex macrumors 68000

    mtbdudex

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    SE Michigan
    #10
    We still race cars here in Detroit??

    Post your picts and have a good road trip.
     

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