Photography biff vs new lens..

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#1
I've a Canon EOS 450 and mainly use an old Sigma 18-200mm (f/3.5-6.3 DC OS) lens for general shooting, and it has to be said mostly the kids at sports events, or the odd airshow, day out. Nothing too specific.

I'm pondering a new body but suspect I won't really see any big differences so had thought about a better lens, which may help.

Looking at lenses the Canon L series seemed great until I saw the price, then I noted (ebay) these:

Sigma EX 70-200mm F/2.8 APO HSM DG OS Lens

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM

Not being hugely savvy, from what I read the f/2.8 compares with the canon's 300m - can that be right? What I'm really after is a better quality lens than the one I presently have and if possible additional zoom, for the sports matches.

I know this will make decent photographers shake their heads in frustration - its too easy with DSLRs to ignore the basics and just crack on.

So, any advice, gratefully received.
 
#2
I noted (ebay) these:
Sigma EX 70-200mm F/2.8 APO HSM DG OS Lens
Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
Are you using your current Sigma via an adapter? According to the listing, the eBay lens has a Sigma mount, not a Canon one!

What is it about your current shots that you want to improve? Sharpness? Noise?
 
#3
I've been looking at the canon 70-200 l f4.0. You can get it for around £400. Would that be out of budget? It gets great reviews, however it's seen as inferior to the slightly more modern canon l lenses (but also a grand more).
 

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#4
Are you using your current Sigma via an adapter? According to the listing, the eBay lens has a Sigma mount, not a Canon one!

What is it about your current shots that you want to improve? Sharpness? Noise?
Bollocks!! Good spot, I looked at a few over the weekend and did not the mounts but have stupidly followed this one! Thanks!!

I really want additional sharpness and if possible better range. Being naive I thought a 300mm had to be better than a 200mm lens but from basic internet sites I can see some flaws in my thoughts, I'm also just reading up on f-stop and can see why the f/2.8 lens may be perceived to be a better lens.
 

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#5
I've been looking at the canon 70-200 l f4.0. You can get it for around £400. Would that be out of budget? It gets great reviews, however it's seen as inferior to the slightly more modern canon l lenses (but also a grand more).
I could be swayed for £400, but the lenses I've seen come in at approx 1/3 of that - is the 70-300 IS USM lens that much worse - at £275 its cheaper? And the real question will I see a difference over my current 18-200m lens?
 
#6
I could be swayed for £400, but the lenses I've seen come in at approx 1/3 of that - is the 70-300 IS USM lens that much worse - at £275 its cheaper? And the real question will I see a difference over my current 18-200m lens?
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0 L USM Lens: Amazon.co.uk: Electronics

That can be had for £399.99. Maybe less if you shop around. As with everything it depends, an amazing photographer will take a better photo with the £100 lens, than I would with a £10k lens. However, it will be easier to get a doog result with the l lens, it will last a lot longer, it will take more abuse. And it will always be worth something, and long term you might get close to your money back.

If you google it, you will find some reviews talking about it.

In reality though, I am sort of comparing the 70-200L with the 100-400L and I cant justify the money so won't be spending it. Just do what seems right for you mate.
 

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
Thanks Sammy. IF I could get the Sigma EX lens that is F/2.8 capable if I understand it correctly, that means it can have a wider aperture for better low light handling, wouldn't that make it a better all round lens?

Last stupid question - 200mm or 300m, does that really make a difference over the range I can shoot?
 
#8
Thanks Sammy. IF I could get the Sigma EX lens that is F/2.8 capable if I understand it correctly, that means it can have a wider aperture for better low light handling, wouldn't that make it a better all round lens?

Last stupid question - 200mm or 300m, does that really make a difference over the range I can shoot?
All things being equal, then having a lower f stop is better. However I it's a bit more complicated at that. This explains it better than me: Photography Tutorial - Aperture and F Stops Explained - YouTube

And yes it will make a difference between 200mm and 300mm. However you can always walk a bit closer to what you are trying to photograph or simply crop your photos later on.
 
#10
LINK: DxOMark - Compare Camera Lenses
Obviously, it's just a website (so don't treat it as gospel) but they do have a fair reputation.

Have you tried using a monopod? If any of your lack of sharpness is due to camera-shake at slowish exposures, it'll help a lot. Shouldn't set you back more than about 20 quid. Fewer leg-sections make for quicker handling, but if you want something that folds up small, go for more.
 

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
#11
LINK: DxOMark - Compare Camera Lenses
Obviously, it's just a website (so don't treat it as gospel) but they do have a fair reputation.

Have you tried using a monopod? If any of your lack of sharpness is due to camera-shake at slowish exposures, it'll help a lot. Shouldn't set you back more than about 20 quid. Fewer leg-sections make for quicker handling, but if you want something that folds up small, go for more.
Or a lightweight tripod and an infra red remote. You set up the shot, stand to the side and zap, picture done, no shakes or wobbles. I tend to use the tripod/remote for night work.
 

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#13
A huge thankyou for all the responses. I have some reading to do (watched the video - made a lot of sense) and I really need to get a better understanding of basic photography (a lot less point & shoot will help).

I'm going to go and find a shop and play with some lenses, I think actually putting them on the body will probably help. need to find a Jessops!

Cheers all!
 

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
#14

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
#15
A huge thankyou for all the responses. I have some reading to do (watched the video - made a lot of sense) and I really need to get a better understanding of basic photography (a lot less point & shoot will help).

I'm going to go and find a shop and play with some lenses, I think actually putting them on the body will probably help. need to find a Jessops!

Cheers all!
Good luck with that ^^
 
#16
A huge thankyou for all the responses. I have some reading to do (watched the video - made a lot of sense) and I really need to get a better understanding of basic photography (a lot less point & shoot will help).

I'm going to go and find a shop and play with some lenses, I think actually putting them on the body will probably help. need to find a Jessops!

Cheers all!
Just don't buy it from a shop, unless you are rich and enjoy burning cash. Amazon or ebay will save you lots of money, which you can spend on beer, fags and middle of the road hookers.
 

A2_Matelot

LE
Book Reviewer
#17
Just don't buy it from a shop, unless you are rich and enjoy burning cash. Amazon or ebay will save you lots of money, which you can spend on beer, fags and middle of the road hookers.
Don't worry, I meant I'd find a physical shop to play - then do some keyboard work - Ebay/Amazon. Even just looking tonight I've seen some great examples at huge discounts but I'm not sure which to go for (L is looking good) but a play with my camera body will probably be sensible.

Thanks again.
 

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
#19
#20
The technical side of photography is all about trade-offs and compromises. You've identified the need for a faster, longer lens to shoot more sports type subjects. The Sigma is the better lens of the two you've mentioned for this purpose. It is of a constant, faster, aperture rather than losing a stop or two at the long end of its zoom range (ie the 300mm end of the Canon offering)- exactly where you don't want to lose speed. You can see this effect on your current lens by setting it to manual aperture, pointing it at a patch of sky on a dull day, racking the zoom from wide to telephoto and watching the effect it has on the shutter speed- it will slow as you get to 200mm.
As well as offering the possibility of a higher shutter speed, there is also the consideration of using a lower ISO setting for any given ambient light level- meaning less 'grainy' images. The other thing is- I'm a Nikon user so Canon gear isn't really my area- but I'm sure your Eos 450 has an APS-C sized sensor meaning that a 70-200mm lens becomes the 35mm equivalent of 112-320mm, still with a maximum aperture of f2.8- good for sport.

If this reads like gobbledygook I apologise, it really sounds more complicated than it is.
 

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