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Thread: Hey, new here... recommendations for starter lenses

  1. #1
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    Hey, new here... recommendations for starter lenses

    Hey, I'm (obviously) new here and had a couple questions. I used to be into photography a few years ago (2004-05?) but back then I only had SLRs (one Canon(AE-1) and one Olympus( OM 10)), I'm finally going to get a DSLR and I'm set on either a t1i or t2i but I was wondering if any of you had suggestions on some good starter lenses for me to get with my camera (a buddy tells me that I should get "prime" lenses since they would (potentially) take better pictures). My budget would be... as little as possible (still pretty new in the US military so I'm trying to keep my expenses as minimal as I can (while still getting at least decent stuff). Thanks in advance for any help/ suggestions.

    Also, to any mods/ admins, I didn't exactly know whether to post on thread in here and an intro thread or what so sorry for that if I did this "improperly".

    Look forward to getting good use out of this site!

  2. #2
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Hey, new here...

    Hi Moose,

    Welcome to the CiC forums from me, gald to have you along.

    No this is fine, it is better to start a question in a new thread in the right forum, as you have, and combine the intro chat, than vice versa.

    For the small difference it makes, most of the time, the extra versatility of a zoom will win out over a prime. If you keep a fairly wide prime on the camera but then have to crop in PP to get the composition right, you have just thrown away the advantage, or looking the other way; if the prime on the camera 'at the moment' is too long, you'll miss the shot if you don't have time to swap lenses.

    I'll let a Canonite advise you on lenses, have you still got access to any of the AE-1's glass? Mind you, I don't know if that might fit/work.

    What sort of things do you want to shoot will be the first question everyone will ask, as we don't whether to advice wide or tele, etc.

    Cheers,

  3. #3
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Hey, new here...

    Unfortunately, the manual focus lenses you had with your AE-1 (I used both an AE-1 and an A-1 film cameras) will not work with an autofocus Canon body. The lenses will fit using and adapter but, a non-optical adapter will not allow you to focus to infinity and an optical adapter is expensive, scarce and doesn't provide decent image quality.

    I can relate to being a poor as a churchmouse when I first joined the Navy in 1957. So, don't listen to folks who insist that you need top-line cameras and lenses to start out in DSLR photography. Most of the present DSLR cameras, even with kit lenses, are capable of producing very good to almost excellent quality imagery.

    The Canon kit lenses 18-55mm IS (the IS version is superior to the older non-IS version) and the 55-250mm IS telephoto lenses can often be purchased with a body at an extremely low cost. They are pretty good lenses and could be considered excellent for their price. This "might" be the outfit for you. You certainly cannot get a lens with equivalent quality and versatility for the price of the 18-55mm IS lens, especially if purchased as part of a kit.

    However, if you anticipate that your interest in photography might grow. Purchasing a refurbished body with a very good mid-range zoom that has a constant f/2.8 aperture (such as the Tamron 17-5omm f/2.8 - either VC or non-VC version) might just be the way to go. You could eventually flesh out your lens collection with a wider or telephoto lens but, in the interim you would have a very versatile setup which would provide you with high image quality.

    I would suggest that a single lens plus a hotshoe flash with a diffuser reflector might be a good starting point. Flash can be used creatively and doesn't need to look like a deer caught in a car's headlights. Flash can extend the versatility of any outfit and can also be used for fill light when shooting out of doors...



    I am a fan of refurbished Canon cameras since I have had such good luck with them and since the two "new" DSLR cameras I purchased needed a trip to the Canon service center within the first 90 days I owned them. I have had no problems with the two refurbished cameras I purchased. Adorama ( http://www.adorama.com/ ) adds their warranty to the Canon 90-day warranty on refurbished units, bringing the total warranty up to a full year.

  4. #4
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    Re: Hey, new here...

    Thank you both for the welcomes and the advice!

    I'm still a little ways off from purchasing a camera so I'll probably spring for the t2i since the package deals (which I'm more than likely going to get now after reading the replies here and roaming around the forum some more.) aren't much more for a t2i vs a t1i package.

    I look forward to learning a lot more from all of you and the resources and write ups on this site!

  5. #5
    rpcrowe's Avatar
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    Re: Hey, new here...

    Please remember one caveat: If a price seems too good to be true, it probably is!

    Responsible vendors such as B&H and Adorama will usually have some of the lowest prices on the Internet. If you find a vendor that is offering equipment at a significantly lower price that these two; it will often be a scam.

    There are, unfortunately, quite a few vendors who "say" that they are selling equipment at unbelieveable prices. However, after committing the funds to these vendors, you often either do not get a camera at all or, are coerced into spending a lot more than you expected.

    A common practice is to charge extra for the accessories (batteries, charger, etc.) that the manufacturer includes with their cameras.

    Also, ensure that the vendor from whom you are purchasing is a Canon approved reseller. You need an invoice from a Canon approved reseller in order for the Canon warranty to be in effect. The warranty card, itself, is absolutely worthless...

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