View Full Version : What lens to get ?

06-01-2007, 05:12 PM
I will soon be getting a Canon 400D DSLR i think, but i am a little unsure which lens to get, i am thinking of the 24-105 F4 IS as it is a nice range and i can use it on holidays etc as a walkaround lens. I don't really want to go down the 70-200 road if i can help it.

Any pointers would be welcome.

07-01-2007, 12:18 AM
I don't like the 400, I prefer the twin screen 350.
A mate at work has a 400, it's big screen seems a bit gimpy, it would be an advantage if your vision is not too good as the characters on the display are MASSIVE.

07-01-2007, 08:37 PM
Thanks for the info, but its really what lens to get, i have had plenty of Canon dslr bodies before, i am just wondering if i will be able to cover must things at 105mm

07-01-2007, 08:53 PM
The EFS 17-85 may be more suitable. For general stuff I just use the cheapo 18-55, which is good, but if cash was no option it would be the 17-85 for the spoon stuff.

With the small sensor size you really need to get down to 17 or 18 to get wide angle stuff.

If you want a go with a 70-200L just come and see me or Jimmy, I have a little one and Jimmy has a big one.

07-01-2007, 09:01 PM
I use to do motor racing photography semi pro, so had the 300mm f2.8 and the 70-200 f2.8 IS but you need these as you were a long way fom the action, with buggy racing you can get a lot closer so do you find you can fill the frame with the 17-85 ?

I don't mind spending the money on some decent glass, just want to spend it wisely lol, but i just want one lens which i can cover most stuff with.

07-01-2007, 09:35 PM
I have used the 17-85 for two years on my 20D, as a one lens travel setup and it has served me well. As Stu says you may miss the wide angle with 24 and a crop sensor, I know I would.

The 24-105 will hold its value well. Would work well on a 5D !

09-01-2007, 09:48 AM
the 24-105 F4L is a spectacular lens - one of the bets Canon have made in a long time. its idea for RC and general walk about photography. the 17-85 is too short for most tracks with more and more of them limiting your ability to get close to the action for safety reasons.


09-01-2007, 10:27 AM
Why are all these lenses so spenny :( Would love a nice mid range zoom but canny afford / justify it really. I am using my 50mm 1.8 cheapo lens a lot more recently, have to almost rub the camera on the cars though.

09-01-2007, 12:43 PM
Jimmy when i get a lens i will let you borrow it :D but it is looking like the 24-105 at the moment.

09-01-2007, 12:45 PM
just been looking at it, does look nice.

09-01-2007, 12:57 PM
And its a 'L' lens plus the IS which i have always found to be good, and i could shoot 2 to 3 stops lower with it.

09-01-2007, 08:56 PM
Will the range of that lense be enough for R/C stuff, even with the crop-factor of the small sensor?
I would have thought that it would be too narrow for 'walk-about' stuff, but not enough for 10th cars? You really would have to get on ya belly trackside (not that we haven't been doing that anyway).

It would be an ace 'walk-about' lense on a 5d or 1d, if you were inclined to go 'walk-about' with one of them.

I've found I need 'walkabout lens 18-55' & 'action shot lens 70-200', 50mm is always a compromise.

09-01-2007, 09:07 PM
I am not 100% sure, looking on the exif data what are most people shooting at? , or do people just crop there images ? I don't really need anything wide to be honest.

09-01-2007, 09:13 PM
Not sure what length, all I can say is between 70 & 200.
When light is good Jimmy will use the 1.4x extender on the 1d to get a bit more reach, makes it like useing an F4 lense on the small sensor.

09-01-2007, 09:52 PM
I used the 50mm on the 1d a bit, and its a decent walk around lens, gets fantastic shots but it is quite a narrow field of view - still, you just have to compose your shots in a different way I guess. indoors its not really very good since you can't control where you can be (cant get far enough away to fit things in the view)

If I were taking a camera on holiday, I would take my Nikon with the 18-70 lens as it does it all. When I go out, sometimes I will just take the nikon with the fisheye though, its fast (F2.8) and gets EVERYTHING in the shot - plus its a mad lens, which is funny.
Nikon make a 18-200 VR which is supposed to be very good, but I don't think there is a canon lens like that.

09-01-2007, 10:09 PM
Tamaron do one, but is about F5million at 200mm.

09-01-2007, 10:56 PM
I think what ever i get it will be lacking in some area, i just don't want a bag full of lens again, just one to cover most options hopefully :)

10-01-2007, 12:58 AM
I used to use just the 18-70 for action shots, ok, I had to get close but it wasn't overly bad. I beleive Neil (@domino) only has the 24-105 for his camera and he gets some good shots.

The best lens I ever used was the 35-350, it was magic.

10-01-2007, 12:50 PM
I second the 35-350, super lens for the range, much better than any of those 28-200 or 28-300 that tamron/sigma came up with. Only thing is it aint cheap..

11-01-2007, 01:02 PM
I think what i am going to do is get the 400D with the kit lens, i only save 30 if i just have the body so i might as well have the lens, which will give me something wide if needed, then get the 24-105.

11-01-2007, 05:26 PM
Have a look at this.

Canon Direct (http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Canon-Outlet)

Where is says refurbished they aint, its all boxed as new. It just says that to keep Canon's high street dealers happy. I think this e.shop is Canon UK's way to combat the likes of Digital-Rev from improting direct from hong-kong.

Northy got his 350 + lens for 330

You can get a 30d plus lense for less than the 400d's are in the shops.

11-01-2007, 05:53 PM
I had looked on there but did not want to get a refurb, i was looking at digitak-rev as they have the 400d + kit lens for 450 shipped from london so no problem with import duty etc.

But i will watch a few auctions and see what price i can get the 400d for.

Was Northy brand new but said refurb on the auction ?.

11-01-2007, 05:58 PM
Yeah, brand new.
From what I can gather it's all new factory sealed stuff.
I suspect they just say it's refurbed to keep their dealers happy, that's why they say they do the no-quibble exchange thing, cos they know it's all really brand new.

11-01-2007, 06:09 PM
It certainly looked absolutley brand spanking new. Didn't John Price get one too Jimmy?


11-01-2007, 06:10 PM
Don't know about that, Andy shill got 3 of them, (300d) from the same place

mark christopher
11-01-2007, 06:10 PM
refurbed can still be in sealed boxes

11-01-2007, 06:21 PM
I 400d (body only) has just sold for 390 + 6 P&P on the Canon shop, or i can get a new one from Digital Rev for 415 delivered ?.

11-01-2007, 06:26 PM
G's camera was absolutely perfect, not a finger mark or spec of dust. That's as near to brand new as I would want.

That Rev price is good however.

11-01-2007, 06:28 PM
Ok i will keep a eye on there shop and see what i can get ;) thanks for all the info.

04-02-2007, 05:05 PM
Got the 400d off the Canon Outlet store ;) and the 24-105 off A.J.Purdys ebay store, over 100 cheaper than anywhere else, i have been to purdys shop so i know they were ok.

Not had the chance to take any actions photos yet, but taken a few of the S4 for the website, some A3 paper on the dinning table using the onboard flash and the dinning room lights on, no fancy flash setup here lol.

I really needed more light as the depth of field is pretty narrow and i did not want to pump up the iso to much these were at iso 200 with +1 flash compensation to blow out the white a bit.




Thanks for everyone's advice on the camera etc, as soon as i switched the 400d on it was like using a old friend, and the 24-105 is nice and the IS works well, i can hand hold down to around 1/20 which is good.

05-02-2007, 01:05 AM
Good choice on the 400D, I ditched my 1DS in favour of the 400D the 1DS was total overkill, a big heavy brute! Funny thing is the 400D produces better images!

My lens of choice is the 17-40L, a great sharp and contrasty walkaround lens.


05-02-2007, 08:27 AM
I have had a 1D and 1D mk2 i am sure the 400D will not be as good for action stuff, you cannot beat the rapid fire on the Mk2.

But the image's do look spot on just from the few shots i have taken, kiddy next weekend will be the test ;)

05-02-2007, 10:19 AM
The widest canon lens I have is my 50 1.8 so I am looking for something like one of these two zooms one day (when I've sold enough stuff), either the 17-40 or 24-105. Wouldn't mind a look at that lens when I see you next jonathan.

05-02-2007, 01:01 PM
Next time we are at the same meeting give me a shout, with it being a L spec lens its built like a tank, has the waterproof seals (handy for Telford) and is heavy but would give a nice balance on your 1D mk2.

05-02-2007, 06:25 PM

I never needed the rapid fire of 1Ds for my photography, I am a little to old to be lying in muddy puddles at RC meets to capture the action:)

Are you from Telford also?

05-02-2007, 06:35 PM
I was into Motorsport photography before i got back in to R/C stuff so the 8 shots a second helped get some great photos, have a look here http://www.gforceimages.net (http://www.gforceimages.net/) and goto the gallery to have a look at some of my stuff. Not from Telford but the national there last year was very wet :D

05-02-2007, 09:38 PM
I really needed more light as the depth of field is pretty narrow and i did not want to ...............

I actually quite like them, it looks like you are trying to draw attention to a particular point on the car.
I've thought more depth = better for that type of shot, not sure now.

05-02-2007, 10:22 PM
Looking at them again it does look like a bit of gaussian blur from photoshop ;), honest it was all done with the camera lol.

06-02-2007, 12:29 AM
I am not sure if the 17-40 would suit be better as I have the 50 and 70-200 also - hard to know what those extra few mm at the low end would give me. I think the 17-40 is about half the price of the 24-105 is that right?

Have to have a look at both really to get an idea. Right now anything that is wide I tend to use the fisheye which is a bit mad.

06-02-2007, 08:36 AM
The 17-40 is about 100 less than what i paid for the 24-105, if you did not have the 50mm then it would be a nice fit, but i think the 17-40 is the way to go for you, with the multipler of the sensor it will not be as wide as 17mm also.

25-02-2007, 06:20 PM
First time out today to actualy take a photo of something moving :D happy with the results, but it was pretty overcast and had to use Iso 400 to get a decent shutter speed.



Click here for bigger versions http://atomic-carbon.gforceimages.net/gallery/250207cov.htm

25-02-2007, 07:02 PM
Looking good.

Interesting you say about having to go to ISO 400. I would say though that there is simply no need to go lower than ISO400 at all. I did sample shots at 100,200 & 400 when I got my Canon and this backed up what the reviews said.

I also wouldnt be affraid of shooting 800 or 1600 for action racing shots as what your tyring to capture isnt pixel perfect colour or detail. Sharpness however for makes a killer shot. Use a noise filter program such as noiseware and the results are amazing.

25-02-2007, 07:15 PM
You will likely find that at ISO extremes the colours are not so nice - so if at all possible stay below 1600 unless you are indoors. Same goes for ISO50 on my canon.
I generally shoot at around 400 iso outdoors as it gives some flexibility in what I can do quickly.

25-02-2007, 07:44 PM
I've had no problem with ISO800 on the 350. 1600 is very dodgy tho' (check out my pics from Durham indoors), I'm sure more dodgy than with the big 1d.

Pics today an Pendle rally-X are all at 800, it was very overcast so I had no option, they are fairly good tho - minimal noise.

25-02-2007, 07:48 PM
Ive seen the 1d and 350 / 20D compared and I don't think theres much in it stu. The 1600 on my 1d is crap, looks nasty and is a little blurry too. The D70 was better and sharper.
If I had to use 1600 all the time I would give up!

25-02-2007, 08:14 PM
Bah Brower ate my post :(

I havnt compared a 1D to a 350d and my 20d but my comparisons have shown slighly better responce noise wise but the colour's you get arnt nearly as good.

I try not to go over iso800 even when shooting indoors, with my local track that gets me down to 1/50th sec for the most part so you get very limited. The alternate is to edit the photos with some undersaturation and you dont notice the lack of vibrance as much.

Also since jimmy mentioned the iso50 on the 1D, like the iso3200 mode it is only an effective iso and not actually a real one. ISO3200 is an underexposed iso1600 pushed to 3200, iso50 is an overexposed iso100. The digital processing is what kills the colour, I assume that iso1600 on canon's have too much in-camera noise reduction killing the vibrance and sharpness.

To use iso3200 I would nearly always be shooting for B&W final output as the colours are usually horrible.

25-02-2007, 08:31 PM
I shouldnt have mentioned 50, I'll keep it as higher real iso's have worse noise. Thats what I meant to convey, not mentioning pretend iso values.

Pro cameras tend also to have less vivid colours and softer output than entry level cameras - something that surprised me. You can read about it in various 1d guides and the reasons behind it. This would apply to any high end cameras I guess. I dont like it.

25-02-2007, 09:05 PM
The pro cameras would have files with more scope for post processing I would imagine.

25-02-2007, 09:13 PM
Just habit shooting at the lowest iso i can, when i had the D30 it was noisey at the higher iso's but from when i had the 1d mk2 and onwards iso 800 is very usable and iso1600 if you are not printing large is ok.

The pro cameras are about very accurate colour reproduction, the red on a F1 ferrari is very hard to get spot on. Most consumer cameras are a little more punchy when it comes to colours and have a little more in camera sharpening.

And i always shot in raw format on the 1D's so i can edit all aspects of the image.

25-02-2007, 09:22 PM
I always use a medium quality jepg rather than raw, its too time consuming and the colours are never what I like. I like them vivid I have to say.:)

25-02-2007, 09:34 PM
I used raw when i got paid for the photos, and i need to use a shot i had screwed up a tad, but now as its for fun jpeg is fine ;)

25-02-2007, 09:35 PM
I always shoot raw too, I dont like shooting JPG's as they are 8bit and posterise if you try to do any major levels changes.

Although I dont do a lot of event work anyway so I tend to spend more time per image than somebody shooting large amount of photographs at events would.

27-02-2007, 09:01 AM
G'day all

First time posting here. I've been taking pictures for eons and have recently gotten into RC so hope to shoot more of it in the coming weeks/months/years. Generally speaking the ISO I shoot at usually depends on the lens I'm using. Wider the lens = lower the ISO.

So far with RC, outdoors I've never had to go above 400 with a f2.8 lens and indoors I will occasionally shoot 800, but generally stay at 400 and shoot either my EF50 1.2L USM or the 70-200 F2.8 IS USM if I can't get close enough to use the 50. Image stabilization helps noticibly.

For those of you shooting RAW, what are you processing with? I've been using RAW Shooter Premium 2006.


(a Canadian in Australia)

27-02-2007, 10:30 AM

What sort of shutter speed can you get indoors 2.8/iso400 ? 1/15th? :eh?::o Sometimes the only option is 50mm 1.8 and iso 1600 to get a half decent bit of light in there. not to mention the horrible colours of those lights. bring on the outdoor season.

Medium quality jepg all the way! 16 million colours is more than I can count already!:D

27-02-2007, 10:56 AM
I shoot raw and use Adobe Camera RAW to process them from within CS2. As for the RAW vs JPG debate, I shoot raw because the halls I race at are so dark I sometimes push the ISO so I need to lift the photos a bit a 16bit raw file gives you a lot more colour information to do this without posterisation.

I do shoot RAW+small JPEG though and for web previews I quite often just use the jpeg file, unless im going to print the RAW file often isnt used.

27-02-2007, 11:09 AM
equivilant to 1/500 with stabilization turned on and whenever practical/permitted a flash with slave.

From the fantastic photo's I've seen here the indoor location is substantially brighter (it's a doomed tennis court and the dome acts as a large diffuser). I prefer using the 50 1.2L as much as I can indoors or out as it's such a great piece of glass.

27-02-2007, 11:15 AM
Blimey that 50 1.2 isn't cheap is it :eh?: Don't think vicky would approve of me getting that hehe..

19-03-2007, 05:44 PM
Any thoughts on the 55/200 ?

Just picked up a new 400D, with the 18/55, would it be a good idea to "complement" the standard lens with the longer lens, or would the 24/105 cover most options, is changing a lens something to be avoided or is the f4.5/F5 on the 55/200 a bit high. Any thoughts ?:)

29-03-2007, 06:00 AM
What fisheye lens do you use?


29-03-2007, 09:19 AM
I use the nikon 10.5mm F2.8 - it's great.

29-03-2007, 05:00 PM
I use the nikon 10.5mm F2.8 - it's great.

I just bought myself a Sigma 15mm 2.8 fisheye lens and wounder how do you get a circlar photo.:p

29-03-2007, 05:06 PM
There are circular fisheyes which - not surprisingly - create a circular image. And diagonal fisheyes like the Nikon 10.5mm, which create a normal square image (but distorted into a fisheye effect).

Not sure what your sigma is? But the 10.5 fisheye is one of the few fisheye lenses around which is full-frame on a non full frame camera (such as any Nikon DSLR)

29-03-2007, 05:50 PM
There are circular fisheyes which - not surprisingly - create a circular image. And diagonal fisheyes like the Nikon 10.5mm, which create a normal square image (but distorted into a fisheye effect).
Yea, I know the ones you’re talking about…. The type that adapts to a normal lens.
The kind that goes on a point and shoot camera or video camera.

Not sure what your sigma is? But the 10.5 fisheye is one of the few fisheye lenses around which is full-frame on a non full frame camera (such as any Nikon DSLR)

My sigma is an 180deg fisheye lens at 15mm. So my question is why dose your lens have more depth and circular distort then mine? Because yours is 10.5mm?

Sample of mine....
http://i95.photobucket.com/albums/l152/MACisneros/Pinks055.jpg (http://i95.photobucket.com/albums/l152/MACisneros/Pinks055.jpg)

29-03-2007, 06:03 PM
The ones I was talking about are both dedicated lenses.
You dont say what camera you are using but looking at your EXIF it's a D50. The reason it's not as 'distorted' as mine is because like I said the Nikon 10.5 fisheye is the only lens I know of which is full frame on a non full frame camera.
So your Sigma lens would theoretically be just the same as mine on a film camera using the full width and height of the glass - but on the smaller sensor size of your D50 it is only using the middle of the lens, so not as much distortion.

Hope I made sense there. Whilst I am getting the full 180degrees of my lens, you are not. I don't think theres much you can do about it either. The effect is still good but just not as extreme.

29-03-2007, 06:24 PM
Aahh Ok..... It makes sence to me.... kind of.:o :)

Yeah, I have a Nikon D50 sorry to mention that. So, I thought the d50 and d70 share the same sensor? Anyway, thanks for sharing your info and I enjoy learning from someone like you!! :D

19-05-2007, 07:45 PM
Jimmy, I'm thinking about buying a good (enough) camera and lense(s). To be able to (hopefully) take great pics like you do, what would I 'minium' need? It's 99% for web, no big size printing. As to your pics I must say 'nobody does it better'!

As to Nikon - some say a D40 may be just as good (or better) than the D40X for web posting, as the 10 megapixel camera will create more noice. Or would a D80 be an improvement?

I agree with your point of views. I have and old EOS which I did some 'serious' photography with years ago. I preferred films that made extra vivid colours. Who cares if it's even better that in real life? :-D

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/NIKON-D80-camera-18-200mm-lens-kit-Intl-Wrty-NO-TAX_W0QQitemZ230068403163QQihZ013QQcategoryZ31388Q QtcZphotoQQcmdZViewItem
-is this a good combo?

As to lenses, which would be better:
18-55 + 55-200
18-55 + 70-300
Are the "L" lenses much better than the std ones? Worth saving for?
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Nikon-10-5-mm-10-5mm-f-2-8-F2-8-DX-Fisheye-Lens-NO-TAX_W0QQitemZ230129613373QQihZ013QQcategoryZ3343QQ tcZphotoQQcmdZViewItem
-if I go for the fisheye in additon, will it also on the D40 or D80 give a full 180 deg picture?