With the intention of starting up my own photography business I'm slowly upgrading my gear with that in mind and am having a hard time deciding on lenses.
The initial plan was to upgrade straight from my Rebel XT to a 5D3, but at the time it wasn't yet available and I ruled out the 5D2 because of the AF issue/old technology and knowing that something better was coming along "soon". So in the meantime I decided an intermediate solution would be to upgrade to a second hand "prosumer" SLR, just to get the hang of a camera with "pro" controls and features as well as better IQ. I ended up with a 50D with a battery grip. My current lens lineup is:
- Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4.5 DC -not very happy with neither the IQ nor build.
- Canon 70-200 f/4L -I love this lens. Build quality and IQ is excellent IMHO but with 1.6x crop the reach is a bit much for general use, so it doesn't get much use unfortunately.
- Canon 35 f/2 -I got this in order to replace much of the Sigma 17-70 use, better light-sensitivity and in order to start out with primes. It's OK but not great -noisy focusing, cheap build and feel nor does the IQ blow me away (perhaps I expected a bit more than what could be delivered for the price).
I'll be shooting a little bit of everything: portraits, products/advertising, school/kindergarten group shots, events, real estate etc. and when I get more experienced perhaps weddings.
The 70-200 feels like a keeper, especially when I go FF even though most pros seem to go for the f/2.8 version.
For "general use" I had my eyes set on the Canon 24-70 f/2.8L but have been waiting for much the same reason as the body: knowing that a mark II was about to be released. Now that it has been announced along with the hefty pricetag I'm considering other options:
- Canon 24-105 f/4L IS -seems solid and well built, has a good feel to it and although online reviews differ a lot it seems like a great contender. The IS should be very useful for still-standing subjects in less than perfect lighting.
- Canon 24-70 f/2.8L II -I haven't ruled it out though it'd better be twice as good as the first version for that price!
- Canon 24-70 f/2.8L (first version) -thousands of pros can't all be wrong when using it. When the version II gets released I assume its price will drop drastically, but I'm a little hesitant as I read a lot of people find it a "mediocre" lens despite the "L" designation
- Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS -not an "L" lens, but possibly an intermediate lens until I go FF. Lots of reviews/reader comments say it's essentially a lens with "L-quality" but with a consumer build
- A combination of a zoom and one or two primes
I've ruled out the Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC because I've gotten the taste of L lenses and rather want to invest in "keepers" rather than "probably just as good". I understand lots of people will disagree with this view.My conclusion
(if you've read this far
I think my money might be best spent if investing in a good zoom for allround/general use and a couple of fast primes. I'm aiming for lots of Speedlite/studio strobe rather than "I don't care for (I don't know how to use) flash", so I probably don't need superfast lenses for everything. I wasn't entirely blown away with the low-light capabilities of shooting at f/2 with my 35mm, but again I was probably expecting it to perform miracles. Even with an f/1.2 or f/1.4 of some sort I assume I'll have to crank up the ISO and/or in combination with a flash.
But which lenses would be good for both crop and FF use? Even when I get the 5D3 (an "entry level FF" (whatever that means) is also rumored, perhaps worth looking into) the 50D will probably be a nice backup body. Still, I'll be losing out on wide-angle with most of those FF-designed lenses but could buy a second hand Canon 10-22 f/3.5-4.5
and sell it when I get the FF, hopefully without any/much loss.
Or... should I go an entirely different route and buy second hand EF-S lenses just for the 50D now, then buy separate L lenses for the FF when I get it?
Sorry for the long post