Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by mike_b|18, May 29, 2010.

  1. Hello everyone, I'm new here and to digital photography. I just purchased and waiting for the arrival of a Canon EOS 50d and was wanting to know, what would be a good all round lens to use with this camera? One that will produce good images and won't break the bank. I had some people that I know who are into photography as well recommend the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM or the Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Auto focus lens.
    Thanks for reading and I look forward to learning as much as I can about my new camera and how to take great photos as well.
    Mike B.
  2. What do you like to shoot? what is your budget? Since my favorite general useage setup on a 5d2 is my 24-105 + 50 1.4 on a 50D I would probably go with a 15-85 and a 35 2.0 but there are many good choices. Look into a flash as well.
    Consider a Tamron 17-50 2.8 or even the Canon 18-55 IS kit lens which has a good reputation and a low price.
  3. Being totally new to this, it could be a great idea to get the excellent and inexpensive EFS 18-55mm image-stabilized kit lens first. Shoot it a lot and you'll soon start to develop specific preferences that may lead you to other lenses - but to start investing in expensive lenses at this point is pretty much guess work.
  4. For the camera, one of the best, all-round, walkabout, cover almost anything lenses is the EF-S 15-85mm IS lens. An older version in 17-85mm is cheaper and still available here and there, but the newer one is genuinely improved. There's nothing at all wrong with the inexpensive EF-S 18-55mm IS as a good starter if you have stretched yourself in buying the body. If you go that route, call your seller and see if you can substitute the kit for the body, it might all come together with one of these lenses at a better price.
    For a prime "normal" lens, Tommy's suggestion of the 35mm f/2 is a good one and will give you nice low light lens that is small and light. Of course, for low light and a short telephoto suitable for portrait and street work, it is hard to beat the all-time cheapest lens that Canon sells, the plastic fantastic, the nifty fifty, the EF 50mm f/1.8 available new for about US$100 and it can be found used for less. Its optical quality is far better, especially for an APS-C camera like yours, than you could imagine from the price.
    Later on, you will find out that you lust for wider and longer lenses, but you don't need to get them all at once. If you MUST have a telephoto a good starter lens is the EF-S 55-250mm IS - cheap, optically good, and easily sold when you want to upgrade later.
  5. I like to shoot scenery, portraits and maybe every once in a while some close ups, mainly in the wife's flower garden. I purchased the camera as a kit which included the 28mm-135mm lens by the way. Is this lens any good?
    Thanks again for reading.
  6. Not sure how much is "break the bank" but I would recommend 17-55 IS.
  7. I am not a fan of the 28-135 on an APS-C camera, its just not wide enough. I really don't understand how that became part of a kit lens but its good enough to get your feet wet. Shoot with it for a while and see what you feel its lacking.
  8. Thanks to all that have responded thus far. As for what I meant by "Breaking the Bank", I really can't afford or see myself spending a $1,000.00 on a lens. Especially when I just spent that on this new camera and not to mention my wife would have my head as well.
  9. Landscapes, portraiture, macro shots, and general use -- on the cheap. There are a few lenses in the Canon lineup that are so ubiquitous as to benefit greatly from economy of scale. These are cheaply built, but optically fairly decent:
    EFS 18-55 IS -- good general purpose lens with excellent IS. Wide enough for landscape work. Can be had for $100 if you shop around.
    EF 50 f/1.8 -- a pretty sharp $100 lens that's pretty good for portraiture on an APS-C camera.
    EF 28-135 IS (which you have). Gets a lot of disrespect on this list, but it's actually a fairly sharp and contrasty lens.
    EF 70-300 IS -- very sharp lens if you also want a telephoto. Most expensive of all of these, but a pretty decent lens. Much better than the older 75-300 IS.
    Kenko extension tubes for macro work ($100 for the set, as I recall).
    If you outgrow these lenses, you won't really have invested much in them. You can keep them as backup/spare lenses, in case your better lenses are out of service or otherwise occupied.
  10. Sarah,
    Thank you for your in depth response, very informative. Just out of curiosity, what is your opinion on the Canon 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS EF-S lens and would this even work with my new camera?
    Mike B.
  11. As you already have a decent lens I'd buy nothing at this point. Shoot with it for a while and see if you (not us) feel that anything is missing. For reference, a cheap and good WA lens is the 18-55 IS, a cheap and good portrait lens is the 50/1.8 and a cheap and good telephoto lens is the 55-250 IS.

    OT: In later posts please do not use all-caps in your title. It's the internet equivalent of shouting and is considered rude. Also, a descriptive title is better than a cryptic one.
    Happy shooting,
  12. As much as I want to go with the flow, I can't. You obviously want better photos and since your new to this, you could have picked an entry level XT body. Don't go backwards in your glass selection. The 17-40 L you mentioned is a good lens. My recommendation is to get a 17-55 2.8 IS. I know you said wife will have your head on a platter but it sucks getting a mustang with a 4 cylinder. v/r Buffdr
  13. zoom telephoto is about the hardest place to get a bargain. The main competitors for an entry level zoom in this range are the 55-250 you mention and the 70-300 that Sarah mentioned. The latter is larger, heavier, and a bit better. You can see a comparison of the two here:
    Neither one has the features of a high-end lens (full-time manual focusing, non-rotating front element, parfocal), but my guess is that either would serve you well as you experiment and learn. When I got back into photography a few years ago after many years away, I bought the 55-250, and while I am now replacing it with a much more expensive lens, I got good use out of it and don't regret the purchase.
  14. The 55-150 IS lens is reportedly a very decent choice for those who find that the EFS 18-55 IS works well for them.
    Again, you don't have to buy a full kit of lenses right off the bat, and you don't necessarily need to buy the most expensive lenses out there - and, in any case, you would want to put off making those kinds of decisions until you have a lot of shooting a some experience under your belt.
    If you are really new to this, that EFS 18-55 IS is a great place to start. If you are certain that you will need the longer focal lengths right away, the EFS 55-150 IS is a fine place to begin as well.
    Yes, there are better lenses than both of these, but there is not a single best option once you get to that point. The choices depend a lot of understanding your own needs fairly well - and it is darned hard (just about impossible) to know what you need that well until you've done some shooting.
  15. Again, thanks to all that responded to my post here and I appreciate everyone's input/advice.
    Mike B.
  16. Mike, I have no opinion on the 55-150 one way or the other. I've never used it, nor have I researched it. G Dan knows his lenses quite well, so if he endorses it (as similar in quality to the 18-55 IS), I'd be comfortable with it too. Whatever you do, keep your wife happy and comfortable with your pursuits. One's spouse is a far more important investment than one's camera gear. ;-)
  17. 28mm-135mm lens by the way. Is this lens any good​
    This is a very good lens with IS. Its drawback is that it gives you no wide angle at all on an APS-C body. My daughter uses this on her APS-C body by preference.
    You may still want to consider the 18-55mm IS lens for its reach between 27 to 18mm. For an ultrawide solution, there are the various lenses in the roughly 10mm to 20mm range. Sigma makes a very good one (the older one) that is less costly than the Canon equivalent, and optically as good in its own way.
  18. I have to second the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 either the IS or non_IS, won't break the bank and is an excellent lens, plus 6 years warranty if memory serves me correctly, I have never had to send a Tamron lens in for repair. Sigma yes, Canon yes.
  19. Don't buy anything until you try the 28-135. It should be more than adequate for a while.
    After you've tried it, then figure if you need wider or longer?
    The one lens I would own for a 50D is the Canon 1-55 IS. BUT, its not a cheap lens.
  20. I was just shooting a T2i with the 18-55 IS kit lens and I was very impressed with the camera and the lens. I would pick up the IS kit lens for about $140 that gives you a pretty versatile kit for not a lot of money. In time you may want to ad a prime like the 50 1.8 for another 100.
  21. The 55-150 IS lens is reportedly a very decent choice for those who find that the EFS 18-55 IS works well for them.​
    It's also a very decent choice for those who do not want to lug around with heavier lenses. Case in point. I have a 7D and my tele lenses are 135/2 and 300/4 IS. That said, I recently added the 55-250 IS. Why? Because if I am not sure I am going to shoot tele in a particular outing I'll take it over the primes. IQ is very good. Not as much as the primes (surprise...) but not much far off. Considering the huge price difference, it's an easy recommendation.

    Happy shooting,
  22. You might consider the Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC LD Aspherical IF Macro Zoom Lens. That is equal to 28--432mm on the 50d. It's a nice lens for the price ($599. at Amazon,com -$50. mail in rebate) if that's in your budget. And you may find it useful a lot longer then you might think.
  23. I disagree. Of all lenses, Hyperzooms typically have the worse IQ. That is because the manufacturer's prime goals are price and zoom range. Yes, Hyperzooms of present times are better than Hyperzooms of the past but so are all other lenses. On a high MP camera this is almost a sure recipe for disappointment.
    Happy shooting,
  24. Wow! 22 responses and still going. Didn't think I was going to get this much feedback, thanks again everyone, Keep-em coming.
    Anyway, as of right now, my current inventory is as follows;
    1) Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 EF-S IS Lens,
    2) Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS
    3) Canon 430EX II Speedlite TTL
    Not to mention my Canon 50d with the 28mm-135mm lens kit in which I'm still waiting to receive. With all that I have here, is this a good setup to start off with? Do these lenses give me a wide range of possibilities?
    Also, I've noticed that a few of you recommended Tamron as a good lens to use. Are these lenses equal in quality to the Canon lenses?
    Thanks for reading
    Mike B,
  25. With all that I have here, is this a good setup to start off with?​
    Yes. Stop buying and start shooting.
    Happy shooting,
  26. I suggest you shoot with what you have for quite some time. Then you will be in a much better position to evaluate if you need something different.
    At a later stage you skills or expectations may outgrew your current hardware, or maybe not, but it's too early to worry about that.
  27. LOL! I'll start shooting once I get my camera :)
  28. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Just do what Yakim wrote: every post he made is correct.
  29. Plenty of great choices offered here, and I'm a big fan of the "use what you have, and shoot" point of view, but we all buy new glass from time to time, and it's worthwhile to ask for opinions along the way. For a 50D (or any crop camera), the 17-55 f/2.8 IS lens is by far the most often used premium performance standard range lens in my kit. This shot shows my well used (dragged around the globe for almost 5 years) 17-55 on my current 50D. The same lens has painted the sensors of a series of cameras beginning with my first 30D with light, and it has never let me down along the way.
    Again, there are many fine choices that you can make, and likely will make over time, but if I lost everything today, I would buy this lens first when I could afford to start rebuilding my kit. Everything else would fall into place over time...
  30. I side with those suggesting you shoot with the 28-135 IS for a while before buying your next lens. It maybe all you ever want or need (oh if I were that lucky ). It is not very wide on a 50d, but that may not matter to you, or it could be of relative importance. That is your interests could evolve so that that you shoot enough wide angle you know you want to go top of the line or that a lesser cost lens will be fine and you would rather spend the money on a professional level telephoto, or a low light portrait lens.
    When I bought my first dslr I could not imagine having any use for a lens longer than about 135 mm. Now I spend a lot of time wishing for more than 400 mm. (problem is I am also wishing for wider than 17 on a full frame camera , a couple different fast primes, a fish eye...). My point is give it some time to see where you think you may be lacking and make additional buys based on your experience and tastes.

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