What lens should I get for my canon

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by jkm1087, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. jkm1087 macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2011
    Hey guys I'm looking for a lower end lens for my canon eos 450d. I'm just starting to get into photography, and I want a good lens for a general purpose lens. Money is kinda of tight so I'm looking more towards either the 18- 135mm is lens or the 18-200mm. Does any of you all have any suggestions?
  2. Funkatronic macrumors 6502


    Jan 5, 2010
    Pune, India
    I don't know if it's general purpose enough for you, but I got my T2i without the kit lens, and i'll be picking up the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 pretty soon as my go to lens, so maybe you should look into that as well.
  3. Razeus macrumors 603

    Jul 11, 2008
    Just keep the kit lens (assuming it's an 18-55) and get the 55-200mm.

    That's plenty range enough for a beginner.
  4. jkm1087 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 17, 2011
    actually the kit cam with a 28-90mm which is not a very good lens at all and besides that I really need a lens with a metal ringed mount for school.
  5. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    Have a look at the Tamron lenses. I have the 28-75 f/2.8 as my #1 lens. The 17-50 f/2.8 mentioned earlier is my next purchase.

    BTW, I have the XSi and it serves me well. I will keep it until I can jump to the 7D. Probably still use it then, now that I think of it.

  6. TheDrift- macrumors 6502a


    Mar 8, 2010
    I'd second this, although i think its a 55 250 rather than 55 200.

    The 55 250 is a great lens, chuck in a nifty 50 and you cover a lot of ground for a small investment.
  7. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    I'd also suggest the Tamron 17-50 mm f/2.8, especially the older non-VC versions. They're cheap and optically very good.
  8. AirborneAngel macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    50mm f/1.8 prime lens, amazing lens, only $100
  9. rebby macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2008
    I would agree with this. They're both decent lenses too. If you want to take a step up from the 18-55, the 18-135 is a pretty good choice as well.
  10. fcortese macrumors demi-god


    Apr 3, 2010
    Big Sky country
    totally agree. Duh, see my sig. The 50 f1.4 is x3 the price, but the 1.8's IQ is probably just as close.
  11. Laird Knox macrumors 68000

    Jun 18, 2010
    Just don't get a cheap lens for the sake of getting a cheap lens. I made that mistake when I got my first DSLR (D70). I picked up a Quantaray (groan) that absolutely is the pits. I should have saved up for a better lens but was heading to Belize and well, I just had to have it. :p

    Another thing is to keep an eye on ebay or my favorite shopgoodwill.com. I don't know the Canon mounting system but I've bought a few lenses for Nikon as cheap as $10 and sometimes they even come with a film camera attached! The old glass doesn't auto focus and sometime you have to set the aperature manually but there are good deals to be had. I picked up a wonderful Nikor 50mm f/1.4 for under $100.
  12. cupcakes2000 macrumors 6502

    Apr 13, 2010
    Yup. Changed my life forever that lens. Buy it.
  13. steveash macrumors 6502


    Aug 7, 2008
    Depends what you want it for. The 55-200 will give you more range but if you want to develop your skill as a photographer and the quality of your pictures get a 50mm prime and learn how to use it. Like others this made a big impact on me once I'd learnt how to get the best out of it. I use the f1.4 but the f1.8 gets a lot of praise.
  14. Gold89 macrumors 6502

    Dec 17, 2008
    Get the 55-250mm IS over the 55-200. One of the best value for money Canon lenses (along with the 50mm f1.8, 18-55mm IS and 70-200L f4).
  15. jdavtz, Mar 4, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2011

    jdavtz macrumors 6502a

    Aug 22, 2005
    I'd think about either a 17(ish)-50(ish) f/2.8 lens as an all-purpose upgrade to the kit lens you have, or adding e.g. a 30mm prime lens (e.g. Sigma 30mm f/1.4).

    The 55-250 is only any good if you want to do more telephoto work.

    The 50/1.8 prime is quite long on a crop-body (i.e. your 450D). Have a look at the focal lengths you use most often on the photos you've taken already, and see how many are around 50mm, and how many of those would benefit from the availability of an aperture of f/1.8. Not many people wandered around with 80mm prime lenses when everyone had film cameras.

    Neither of my two suggestions above will help if you're actually needing that 100-200mm range. Or a 300-400mm range. Or a 10-22mm range. You really have to think about what you want your new lens to improve in your photos, or what photos you want to be able to take with your new lens that you can't take at the moment.

    A few pointers/thoughts that might help you decide what you want/need:

    Photos not sharp enough?
    Can't isolate subject from background sufficiently?
    Can't zoom in enough?
    Can't zoom out enough?
    Lens too big to carry around all the time?
    Can't get good enough photos in low light because shutter speed too low +/- ISO too high?

    Don't buy the 50mm/1.8 for $100 just because people say it's good or "cheap". If it's not a useful focal length for you, you'd do better to put that $100 towards a more expensive lens that actually does what you want.
  16. merkinmuffley macrumors 6502a

    Dec 3, 2010
    An excellent all around lens for the crop format cameras is the 15-85mm.
  17. ghoti macrumors member

    Sep 12, 2008
    I have been using the kit lens with my Rebel XT for 2 years now... my budget is tight so I FINALLY upgraded to that Tamron 17-50 f/2.8. I researched and consulted with photographers to no end. I wanted greater reach, but I know I'm going to love the increased depth of field. I just got it yesterday, have had time to snap a whopping 3 photos of my dog with it.

    Can't wait to try it out more!

    Here are a bunch of shots from my XT with kit lens...
    sorry, flash-based! :/
  18. Eaton Photos macrumors regular

    Jun 23, 2010
    You've stated money is kinda tight, but you have not stated what your budget is. If you could provide us (the community) with a budget, you will be able to receive more specific recommendations, per your general statement of wanting a good general purpose lens.

    The 18-135 is $450 & the 18-200 is $595 @ B&H, so we could theoretically draw a budget based on the retail pricing of said lenses. Working within say a $600 budget, you can get a bit of lens for the $$$.

    First lens I will recommend is the Tamron 17-50/2.8 Non-VC. If you are open to buying 2nd Hand, from either KEH or from the Photo Forum's B&S Boards, you can save quite a few $$$'s and get more bang for your buck. The 17-50/2.8 Non-VC averages around $350 on the used market, $450 New.

    Second lens, that I will suggest, is the EF-S 55-250 IS. It can be found on the Used market for about $180 (though B&H has one for $149), or new for $255.

    By splitting the Super-zoom into a couple of lenses, you will gain more in terms of IQ & flexibility. While the 18-XXX lenses sound appealing, they also create a lot of compromises. The 17-50 is a rock solid lens, that gives you both your Wide Angle but also 2.8, so you can also shoot in low light situations, whereas a 3.5-5.6 lens will typically not be the best option. And the 55-250 will still give you your reach, in the form of a telephoto.

    If you have some money left over, you could invest into a Speedlite (430EX comes to mind), and start using a flash for fill & get some basic understanding about lighting. The built-in PUF is limited, and thus limits what you can do in terms of properly lighting a scene.

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