View Full Version : Zoom Lens Help?
11-14-2006, 07:12 AM
Hey experts =o)
I've been looking into a zoom lens (esp since my DDs started gymnastics in October). What would be the best to get??
I was thinking about the 70-300mm
Sigma Zoom (http://www.pricegrabber.com/p__Sigma_Zoom_Telephoto_70_300mm_f_4_5_6_APO_DG_Ma cro_Autofocus_Lens_for_Canon_EOS,__10234121/search=70-300)
Canon Zoom (http://www.pricegrabber.com/p__Canon_Zoom_Telephoto_EF_70_300mm_f_4_5_6_IS_Ima ge_Stabilizer_USM_Autofocus_Lens,__12432618/search=70-300)
What's the difference between the 2 quality wise besides the big price difference. Am I gonna have trouble w/the short f-stop range? When I got my dSLR in July I shot in AV, but shortly after shot in M...and a couple of months ago started using RAW...so I'm thinking some of my beginner expererience already will be ok w/the small f-stop range?
Also...if you see any stops there that I should NOT buy from...let me know lol.
ETA = do you think this is a good zoom...or should I be looking at one that goes to 200mm....I'm horrible about judging distance lol.
11-14-2006, 08:00 AM
I have an 80-200 and it is not enough zoom for me. I would like to get the 70-300 for getting good shots of my kids playing sports.
From what I can tell, the difference b/w the two links is that the Canon link has the image stabilizer which cuts down on camera shake (this is the lens I would love to get.)
I really don't know about problems w/ the short-F stop---though I wouldn't think it would be a major problem.
Of course all this is coming from a photog hobbyist--not a professional!:lol So I'm curious to see what others have to say as I'm interested in this lens too. It's been on my list for awhile---that and the fixed 85mm lens.
11-14-2006, 08:18 AM
Gymnastics is TOUGH! If your meets are like ours, you're up in the stands in a gymnasium that is poorly lit, and they're in motion in front of you. My kids were jumpers, so that was REALLY hard, as they were in the air, up and down, always moving. I got some shots from my lens but it was a toss-up between speed and light always -- I'd get a blur, or my photo was dark. You can see some I took at an international meet here - http://www.digishoptalk.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=17068&cat=500&ppuser=980
I have a Nikkor 70-300 1.4-5.6 that I used most of the time. It was sufficient to get in close enough if I could get enough light to stop the motion.
Helpful as mud, I know ;-)
11-14-2006, 08:38 AM
thanks =o) No worries here yet since my girls are 3.5 and 1.5 lol. And that nikon has a low f-stop and a longer range that would be very useful.
11-14-2006, 10:26 AM
LOL .. gymnastics is TOTALLY addicting, little or not, you can get really "into" the sport really fast. When we were in Switzerland, we were able to meet some of the Gold medalists from the last Olympics, and it was completely AWE-inspiring!
(btw .. thanks for commenting LOL ... I promise I wasn't fishing for it though .. just trying to show how I was able to stop the motion)
11-14-2006, 02:30 PM
The Canon version is a very good lens - I know a lot of people who normally use the 70-200 Ls that use this when they need the 200-300mm range. IS is useful for camera shake which appears sooner in the telephoto range, but won't help with motion blur. The downside is it is pricey. I know Lisa Cohen over at ScrapArtist has it if you want to ask a scrapper's opinion.
I had the Sigma for my holiday earlier this year because I wanted something cheap (didn't use tele much at the time) with decent quality. The build is solid but it doesn't have a zoom lock so it may creep if you're carrying the camera pointing lens down. It requires a bit of post-processing to get the images looking good as they're a little flat SOOC but since you're shooting in RAW now, it's easy to do. This (http://www.scrapartist.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=13887&cat=500&ppuser=242) and this (http://www.digishoptalk.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=10599&cat=500&ppuser=491) (the main shot) are probably my fave shots from that lens that I have online.
BTW, Neither has a short f-stop, the numbers are the maximum aperture at both ends of the focal range. So it's a maximum of f/4 at 70mm and slows down to f/5.6 at 300mm. I think they'll both go down to f/22 at all focal ranges. It's a pretty standard aperture for this length of lens which can be tricky in low light, but you'll be paying big bucks for anything faster.
Oh and if any store (except the majors like Amazon, etc) is cheaper than B&H, make sure you check them out at Reseller Ratings as there are a lot of dodgeballs in this industry.
11-14-2006, 02:48 PM
Oh, another thing... if you find that you don't need the 200-300mm range, my choice would be the Canon 70-200mm f/4L (http://www.amazon.com/Canon-70-200mm-Telephoto-Zoom-Cameras/dp/B000053HH5/sr=8-1/qid=1163544287/ref=pd_bbs_1/102-2359815-2390532?ie=UTF8&s=electronics). Amazing lens - great colour, sharpness and a constant maximum aperture. I sold it to help fund my 5D and the only reason I haven't repurchased it is because I'm saving up for the 100-400mm as I'm shooting more wildlife now and need the extra length. There is a new IS version of this but it is very overpriced at the moment. Once that comes down in price, I'd recommend that instead.
11-14-2006, 04:16 PM
I love you Lauren lol! Thanks so much for explaining the f-stop. It's such a big price difference...I may end up going for the canon though.
Would you recommend a filter or a hood for this one? I know it doesn't come w/the lens, but they are available, right?
11-14-2006, 06:36 PM
I don't think you'd regret getting the Canon 70-300mm. I would've got it for my holiday but it was out of production at the time and a bit more than I was willing to pay for a tele then. Obviously not now. ;) Anyway, one thing you might want to check with the store is that they're selling new stock of this lens, earlier models had some problems. Canon will fix it for you if you do get an affected lens, so it's not a big issue (and most of the majors wouldn't have old stock by now) just a bit annoying.
You can get a hood for the lens, it is the ET-65B hood. They're good for general protection and for reducing flaring, but UV/protection filters really only need to be used when you're in harsh conditions (e.g. at the beach) and might scratch the glass. But I tend to forget to bring either (I pack my kit light, the lenses are heavy enough!) so I never use them. :lol
11-14-2006, 06:45 PM
I have the Canon 70-300mm and love it! And there are still times I wish I had more,lol But that's only because I shoot a lot of wildlife, and sometimes just can't get close enough even with the 300mm. :D
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