Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 22

Thread: The next best Canon lense

  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    6
    Real Name
    Jessi

    The next best Canon lense

    I just bought a Canon Rebel T3i a few months ago and did a lot of research on my first lense, a Canon EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 II USM. I love this lense and what it can do and I am now looking into getting another lense now that I have learned more about using my camera.

    Does anyone have an suggestions on the next lense I should get? I was looking at the wide-angle lenses, which look really awesome but may still be out of my knowledge range. So Im stuck on where to go next.

    I am into landscape photography, which includes wide mountain ranges, but also getting up close and personal with flowers. I also like taking pictures of wildlife, and of course my dog. I dont do much people photography at this point in time, and my other lense is fine for the any pictures I do take of people, so thats not necessarily a need for my second lense.
    Last edited by JessiM; 1st October 2012 at 06:48 PM.

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,723
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Hello and welcome to CiC. I hope this will be the first of many posts you make as a member of the forum. As you've no doubt seen, this is a learning resource, so the sharing of knowledge and experience is what's it's all about.

    So that you don't continue to get people asking you what your proper name is, because most us use that on here, you can go to Edit Profile and enter your proper name under 'Real Name'. Then it will appear underneath your Username in all your posts. You can also enter your location so that it does the same, just as in my details alongside this message. Then we all know where everyone is in the world.

    As to your question - The first thing anyone needs to know in order to help you is, What is your budget? There is no point anyone suggesting a high-end lens if your budget rules that out.

    It would be helpful to know if you've looked at any lenses and read any of the online lens review websites.

  3. #3
    New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    6
    Real Name
    Jessi

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Im willing to spend somewhere between $600-$800 on my second lense. I have done a little research online, but wasnt sure on which direction to go. Someone suggested the Canon 50mm f/1.8, but reading the reviews Im not sure thats the route that I want to go and the lense seems to be pretty cheaply made. Again I looked at a couple of the wide angle lenses (which is what I thought I wanted to start with) but reading the tutorial on here Im not sure if I have enough experiance with my camera to go that route yet. And so thats where I got stuck (and also found this website!)

  4. #4
    dasmith232's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Colorado, USA
    Posts
    40
    Real Name
    Dave Smith

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    What do you like to photograph? And, (sorry, but have to ask,) how much do you want to spend? You don't have to answer this to everyone else, but you'll have to decide for yourself.

    I have the 28-105, which I bought to go with a film body back in the early 90's. With film or with full-size sensors, 28mm was considered a "reasonable" wide angle. The T3i has a "crop" sensor and 18mm is the "new normal" for wide angle. Let's assume that you'll stick with the 28-105. There's no reason to duplicate its range or overlap it by much.

    You might notice that the 28-105 is hard to work with for indoors interior spaces or candids. In that case, you'd want 18-something. However, the 18-55 is a bit lower quality than the 28-105 and (I think) too much overlap with the focal range. The 18-135 has more range at both ends (wide and long) than the 28-105 and you'd probably find that you'd never use the 28-105 again.

    If you like interiors or landscape, you might prefer the 10-22mm. It has become one of my favorite lenses.

    If you like longer reach (sports, wildlife), then one of the 70- or 75-300 might be more of your liking.

    I personally own all of the lenses that I've mentioned above, plus many more. The order that I decided for shooting across many kinds of photography was:

    28-105, then 75-300, then 600, then 18-55, then 10-22, then a replacement for the 75-300 (with IS), then 50mm/1.8. There are a few more that I haven't listed here. I no longer use any of the first 4 in that list. I carry the 10-22, 18-135 and the 75-300 as my "standard" set, even though I have a couple of "L" lenses. (I still use the L's, but do so with a specific shoot in mind.)

  5. #5
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,723
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Jessi

    One thing I'd suggest is - don't buy another lens .......yet!

    You've very honestly written, "I'm not sure if I have enough experience with my camera to go that route yet." Having the ability to make that self-assessment is a big plus point. You'll know that you have enough experience when you know exactly what sort of lens you do want and that you do have the knowledge and skill to get the best out of it. Until then, I'd suggest that an option is to keep developing your knowledge and skills with the lens you have.

    You don't needs lots of lenses to be a great photographer. Sure, they open up more options. But if you don't feel you can use them to the best advantage, then you're as just as well not having them.

    This is a good time for one of my favourite stories ..............

    Lee Trevino, champion golfer, used to talk about practicing with one golf club. He would spend days/weeks with that one club, getting it to do everything that it could possibly do, before putting it back in the bag and moving on to the next club. As he knew, it wasn't the club that was the problem, it was about how well he knew how to use it.

    So, practice, practice, practice. Then practice some more. Then you'll know what sort of images you want to make and what sort of lens you need for the job.
    Last edited by Donald; 1st October 2012 at 08:03 PM.

  6. #6
    Melkus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Fayetteville,NC
    Posts
    439
    Real Name
    Paul Melkus

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    I'm with Donald on this one but when you are ready you might want to look at a 50mm prime lens, you can do so much with just this one lens, I know my 50mm gets more work than my other 3 lens put together

  7. #7
    rpcrowe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Southern California, USA
    Posts
    12,478
    Real Name
    Richard

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Donald is very correct in his statement above.

    After using your lens for a while, you wll probably discover what is lacking (if anything) in this lens for your shooting needs.

    Usually a photographer desires to replace or augment his lens or lenses because of one or more of the following reasons:

    1. The focal length is not wide enough on the photographer's camera
    2. The photographer needs/wants a longer focal length
    3. The aperture is not wide enough for the type of shooting that the photographer likes
    4. The image quality of the present lens is not up to the desires of the photographer
    5. The lens cannot focus close enough for the macro-type images the photographer desires to shoot

    The quality of DSLR imagery is quite dependent upon the lens used. Sometimes, a new lens will increase the quality of a photographer's images drastically and/or will allow the photographer to become more versatile in his or her photography. However, OTOH, a new lens, purchased on a whim or for the wrong reason can be a disappointment - often an expensive disappointment!

    Photographers of today, shooting with DSLR cameras, are used to having a plethora of different lenses. However, in 1960 I shot a six month Mediterranean Cruise with the U.S. Navy using a Rolleiflex camera which had a fixed 80mm f/2.8 lens. Sure there were a few shots I couldn't get with this outfit but, generally my imagery of the different ports I visited was excellent.
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 1st October 2012 at 08:51 PM.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    South Island, New Zealand
    Posts
    524
    Real Name
    Ken

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    If you down load Exposureplot, this will give you a graph of the focal length, ISO, aperture, and shutterspeed for all the images in a folder. This may indicate if you are coming up to the long end or short end of your focal lengths. The following graph is for about 2500 images taken on a trip recently. I was using a 24-105 f4, 50mm f1.4, and a 70-200 f4

    The next best Canon lense

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    249
    Real Name
    Chris

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    I'm gonna jump here with a suggestion that might not help, but it won't be the first time I've done that. If you don't already have a REALLY GOOD TRIPOD, get one. Along with a really nice ball-head, you will find that you landscape possibilities open up incredibly. Just my two cents.

  10. #10
    New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Alaska
    Posts
    6
    Real Name
    Jessi

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    I really appreciate everyone's advice! I guess I was just feeling like it was time for another lens, but I think Ill stick with the one I got and keep practicing with it. Maybe then it won't be so hard to decide on what lens I want.

    I think this website will help with that, this place is like a gold mine! Thanks again everyone! I'm glad I didn't rush into anything!

  11. #11
    rpcrowe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Southern California, USA
    Posts
    12,478
    Real Name
    Richard

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by hoffstriker View Post
    I'm gonna jump here with a suggestion that might not help, but it won't be the first time I've done that. If you don't already have a REALLY GOOD TRIPOD, get one. Along with a really nice ball-head, you will find that you landscape possibilities open up incredibly. Just my two cents.
    I totally agree with Chris... If you use a tripod for your landscapes and shoot at somewhere around f/8 or f/11; your imagery should be technically quite good. Artistically however, the quality of the imagery depends on the photographers talent...

    BTW: don't fall for the generally believed idea that a UWA lens is the only key to good landscape photography! IMO, a UWA lens is a specialized tool for landscape work and should only be used when you have a significant and interesting foreground subject to include. Using a UWA lens just to gain a wider left to right field of view quite often results in a vast area of uninteresting sky and foreground with a thin band of interest somewhere in the middle of he frame.
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 2nd October 2012 at 03:06 PM.

  12. #12
    New Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Barry, South Wales
    Posts
    2
    Real Name
    Gareth Williams

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Whilst I am very, very new to photography I have just bought myself a Canon 500 f1.8 ii prime lens.

    I still don't know what exactly to do with it but it only cost me 95.00.

  13. #13
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    12,364
    Real Name
    Manfred Mueller

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by JessiM View Post
    I really appreciate everyone's advice! I guess I was just feeling like it was time for another lens, but I think Ill stick with the one I got and keep practicing with it. Maybe then it won't be so hard to decide on what lens I want.

    I think this website will help with that, this place is like a gold mine! Thanks again everyone! I'm glad I didn't rush into anything!
    A very good strategy indeed. I own a number of lenses and except for the one I bought when I originally picked up the camera, I bought every other lens with a very specific need in mind. Until you figure out the type of pictures you want to take and you often run up against a limitation that your current lens doesn't let you work around, you will have your answer.

    If you just go out and buy a lens, and it ends up sitting in a drawer most of the time, you will have sunk a fair bit of money into a product that does not meet your real needs. Money that you could have better spent elsewhere...

  14. #14

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Gujarat, India
    Posts
    171
    Real Name
    Bedanta

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by Taffy View Post
    Canon 500 f1.8 ii prime lens.
    Hi Gareth,

    If you are talking about EF 50mm f/1.8 II, it's the cheapest Canon lens available. It's one of the fastest and sharpest lens which gives you excellent IQ (even in low light condition). Can be used for portraits / close-ups / landscapes etc. IMHO, it's a must for a beginner. Being a prime, you need to move a lot to get the perfect framing and it definitely helps you to develop your compositional skill as well. Of the 3 lenses I have (18-55mm kit lens, 50mm prime and 70-300mm), this is the lens I use most of the time.

  15. #15
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    12,364
    Real Name
    Manfred Mueller

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by Taffy View Post
    Whilst I am very, very new to photography I have just bought myself a Canon 500 f1.8 ii prime lens.

    I still don't know what exactly to do with it but it only cost me 95.00.
    Buying a lens just because it is cheap, may (or may not) be a wise decision. Fast 50mm lenses were the "standard lens" for 35mm film cameras, so every camera manufacturer made a reasonable quality, fairly inexpensive 50. The more expensive "pro" 50mm lenses; usually the f/1.4 or f/1.2 were the mainstay for existing light film photograhy, because of the relatively low ISO values of film, versus what a modern DSLR can do. I find 50mm lenses are a bit limited for crop frame cameras.

    With your crop frame (1.6 crop factor) Canon, this lens is a short telephoto lens and is getting into the range of being a pretty reasonable portrait lens; although I prefer one that is a bit longer. I'm not sure how useful you will find it as a general purpose lens; somewhere around 30mm would be better with your camera, I think.

    I am a fan of prime lenses (I own four), as they force you, especially as a beginner, to move around to compose, rather than picking up the bad habit of standing in one place and adjusting the focal length on your zoom. This means you will develop a better skill set as you improve. Even now, when I find I'm not happy with my composition, I will pop a prime on my camera and go out and shoot with it, just to re-enforce my composition skills.

  16. #16
    Melkus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Fayetteville,NC
    Posts
    439
    Real Name
    Paul Melkus

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    Buying a lens just because it is cheap, may (or may not) be a wise decision. Fast 50mm lenses were the "standard lens" for 35mm film cameras, so every camera manufacturer made a reasonable quality, fairly inexpensive 50. The more expensive "pro" 50mm lenses; usually the f/1.4 or f/1.2 were the mainstay for existing light film photograhy, because of the relatively low ISO values of film, versus what a modern DSLR can do. I find 50mm lenses are a bit limited for crop frame cameras.

    With your crop frame (1.6 crop factor) Canon, this lens is a short telephoto lens and is getting into the range of being a pretty reasonable portrait lens; although I prefer one that is a bit longer. I'm not sure how useful you will find it as a general purpose lens; somewhere around 30mm would be better with your camera, I think.

    I am a fan of prime lenses (I own four), as they force you, especially as a beginner, to move around to compose, rather than picking up the bad habit of standing in one place and adjusting the focal length on your zoom. This means you will develop a better skill set as you improve. Even now, when I find I'm not happy with my composition, I will pop a prime on my camera and go out and shoot with it, just to re-enforce my composition skills.
    Yep that's why I love to use my 50mm lens and why I think everyone should have one in there bag.

  17. #17

    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Abuja, Nigeria.
    Posts
    91
    Real Name
    Ife.

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    I can't say for sure how good your skills are but being here suggests you want to learn something. I'll tell you a story and it is true.

    I bought my Canon 1000D from a friend...it is in good shape though the AF does not work on the 18-55 kit lens. Like i do with things i'm not familiar with, i looked for some older and more experienced photographers and showed them my camera. Pretending not to be intimidated with their huge knapsacks, cameras, tripods and ooooooooow...lenses i asked them the following questions:

    1. Since i read that my camera is entry level DSLR, can I use it for professional work?
    2. When do i start saving for a new camera?
    3. I need lenses, which one should I get?

    Just think of how i felt carrying my camera in a shaving kit pouch(not kidding), no additional lens, no flash and just the included 4gb lexar memory card to see people how use a 600D as the common camera and the 5D or 1D as the main camera. Gentlemen and ladies, that is the latest definition of "intimidation" but like many decent people, they sat me down and one in particular answered my questions this way:

    1. Since i read that my camera is entry level DSLR, can I use it for professional work?
    "Yes you can Ife. Old pictures that we see as classics today were taken with cameras that were not as sophisticated as a this camera(showing me a point and shoot hp camera)". Point noted.

    2. When do i start saving for a new camera?
    "Ife, you are educated. Go online and read about pixels....when you are due for a new camera, you will know it. Let this camera buy or bring you your next camera"....Actually he caught me saying "Wow" to the review of a certain camera, i think a rebel brand too that has 18mega pixels. Back then, my 1000D felt like a phone camera.

    3. I need lenses, which one should I get?
    "Ha ha ha, keep reading and practicing. No one will tell you.....it is digital, keep shooting and deleting, when you see some pictures you like and with good handling of your camera, you cant achieve it.....research on optics"

    His summary was that, with a conscious effort you yourself will know when you need something else. Do not buy a lens because you have the money to do so or you just "think" you should have it.

    The lens i badly need now is the Canon 50mm f/1.8. The cheapest lens out there but guess what? I can not afford it at the moment, i just can't. So what do i do? With huge advice here, i can just keep my 18-55 to 50mm and if it aint fast enough, ISO and flash come in. I liken photography to life, it is always about trade-offs. Getting the right blend of shortcomings and improvisation is what sweetens the cocktails of good photographers here.

    At the risk of sounding like a broken record, do not buy a lens because you "just" need to buy a lens. Buy it when its absolutely necessary.

    Now i have a flash and a sigma 70-300mm lens given to me as gifts. Now the "entry-level" cam has acquired its first additional lens and flash(both new)....maybe i'm just being philosophical but i believe every good thing will come.

    I wish you all the best!

  18. #18
    inkista's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    San Diego, California
    Posts
    1,398
    Real Name
    Kathy Li

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    A few more words of advice. When you get gear recommendation on online boards, be a little careful. Remember that everybody is coming from their own POV and it may not be yours. They can tell you what works for them. But you're you, and your needs and budget may be vastly different. A pro photographer who can write equipment off on the taxes as a business expense is going to have a different attitude about the pricetag of an L lens than a hobbyist photographer, just as a hobbyist photographer might place higher value on going cheap with 3rd party alternatives, or place less emphasis on build quality because they won't be thrashing the gear with heavy constant use.

    The task here is not finding "the best" lens. It's about finding the best fit for you.

    I always make the analogy that a P&S camera is like a swiss army knife (small, cheap, self-contained, but some tools are missing or compromises), while an interchangeable lens camera is like a big red tool box (big, heavy, expensive, and you still have to buy the tools, but you can have the right tool for the job.) But a plumber, a carpenter, and an electrician will fill their toolboxes very differently. And, as you may have noted, a lens may not always be the answer. Landscape photographers will always talk about tripods. Portrait photographers about lighting gear.

    When I got my first dSLR, I did so in order to shoot 360x180 panos. So, the second lens I bought was an 8mm circular fisheye lens. This is, to say the least, an eccentric choice. Few folks would want a fisheye, let alone a circular fisheye. Few would rent one, let alone own one. No one would ever recommend it as a 2nd lens to a newb (well, except maybe other 360x180 pano shooters). But for me, that 8mm fisheye has lived in my bag, goes with me on nearly every shoot, and has become a staple. I did a sidegrade over to a m4/3 system, and again, one of the first lenses I got was another fisheye.

    This is a lot like clothes shopping. What suits you and your particular style may not be what suits everyone else. So, pay attention to what is frustrating you about your current lens. What its limitations are that you wish you could remove. That will guide you to what you want in your next lens. Or even if what you want is another lens.

    A very common group of lenses that is recommended to a Canon newb are what I personally tag as the "training wheels triple": the EF-S 18-55 IS kit lens, EF-S 55-250 IS, and the EF 50mm f/1.8 II. All three lenses, if you stick with photography and get hypercritical about image quality, will eventually get replaced in your kit, but the combined price tag of all three lenses (if the 18-55 is bought as part of the camera kit) is less than one good mid-grade lens, and they can impart experience to you with IS vs. non-IS, prime vs. zoom, fast vs. slow, and wide vs. normal vs. telephoto.

    There is something of a chicken and the egg problem going on with buying lenses which is that without experience with lenses, it's hard to know what you might want. This triple can give you experience. Which is often why I'll recommend to a newb to get the kit, and the other two lenses and hold off on "permanent" lens purchasing for a while. Others would disagree, and would recommend going for higher-end "permanent" lenses and not wasting time/money on the cheapie stuff (great advice if you already are experienced enough to know what you want), or to get a superzoom (18-200 IS), which you can use as a light travel lens when you've moved on. These are all completely legitimate paths to take.

    It looks to me like you're the type who follows the second path, so waiting to get more experience is good. But you're still limited by owning only a single lens. So, consider renting lenses to get a wider experience before purchasing. Renting an ultrawide for a week can certainly tell you if you want one, and the outlay won't be nearly as much as purchasing one. A local camera store can probably rent you gear, or you can use one of the many internet outfits that will ship a rental lens to you. Renting will also let you try out other bodies, lighting gear, tripods, etc. etc.

    For the wildlife shooting, you probably want more reach, so I'd say look at the EF 70-300 f/4-5.6 IS USM. The 70-200 f/4L USM is also in your budget, but may be a bit short of reach for most wildlife. If by wildlife you mean small songbirds, I'd actually recommend saving up more cash to get a 400mm lens (say, maybe a Sigma 120-400 HSM OS). But if by wildlife you mean bears or moose or deer, a 70-300 should work fine. If you'd prefer to save some cash, the EF-S 55-250 IS is also a nice low-cost option, but lacks USM for faster autofocus.

    What you probably really want, though, is the 100-400L IS USM. But that's about double the top end of your budget.
    Last edited by inkista; 8th October 2012 at 07:24 PM. Reason: typo

  19. #19
    Glenn NK's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Victoria BC
    Posts
    1,510

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    Quote Originally Posted by JessiM View Post

    Landscape photography, which includes wide mountain ranges, but also getting up close and personal with flowers. I also like taking pictures of wildlife, and of course my dog.
    Jessi:

    This is mixed bag of subjects, typically requiring a wide variation in focal lengths. For wide mountain ranges with this camera body you'd require a focal length in the order of 12-16 mm. For flowers up close a macro lens with a FL of 100 mm or more is useful. For wildlife, a telephoto with a FL of 300 plus is more useful.

    You will not find one (good) lens that does all this. The suggestion to take your time is good.

    I like the suggestions by:

    Chris (hoffstriker) - a good tripod. At this point in time, this will add more quality to your images than another lens.

    Kathy Li (inkista) - be careful with forum advice - we're very prone to suggest what we like, not what's good for you.

    Glenn

  20. #20
    Harpo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Lancaster, PA USA
    Posts
    425
    Real Name
    Mike

    Re: The next best Canon lense

    In addition to all the useful and excellent comments and suggestions… I take one look at where you live Jessi- Alaska! Thats ultra wide and super telephoto heaven! You have some tough (and possibly expensive) choices available to you to make!

    I will emphasize again what was said previously about getting to learn more and getting better with what you have before jumping to the next thing… It would be mighty hard for me to be that patient with all the amazing beauty surrounding you and not being tempted to get a good lens on both ends of the focal length spectrum! Heck, theres enough salmon and eagles feeding close enough that your 28-105 will work. I was in Juneau last year with a 18-135 and a rented 70-200L with 1.4 tele. Needed more reach, but the 18 was barely wide enough on my T2i. But the whole experience prompted me to get better and eventually was able to move up to the 5D3 and working towards more lenses. If I look back logically at the upgrade purchase from the T2i to 5D3 and L lenses, if it wasn't for the fact that we came into money to make the purchase at that time, I would have stayed with what I had and continued to get better. Sometimes common sense is made to be thrown out the window!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •