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Messages - Act444

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Landscape / Re: Buying a Camera
« on: May 13, 2011, 11:15:04 PM »
I had a T2i and upgraded to the 60D for the faster speed, better focusing and (slightly) more features.

Using the same lens with both, they basically take the same images. I assume the T3i is the same. It just depends on the feature set you want. If you don't need bells and whistles, you can save a few hundred dollars, get the T2i and then use the money saved to get a better lens. If budget is not an issue, though- can't go wrong with the 60D. Among the three cameras you mentioned, you're paying for features, really- not image quality. That will come down to which lens you put on the camera.

As for which lens- that's really subjective. I have a handful of lenses but they serve different needs for me. The EF-S 10-22 is a common lens used among landscape photographers- perhaps that plus the stock lens will be good enough, but hard for me to say because only you know what your needs are.

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS or EF 70-200mm f/4L IS
« on: May 12, 2011, 11:32:00 PM »
Your thoughts guys on the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS or an EF 70-200 f/4L IS.  There is somewhat of a price difference (approximately $300) among the two, with the latter being cheaper, yet older (2006).  Should you choose one among the two in terms of value, what would it be?  Both have very decent reviews and I'm looking to purchase one of them.  Help me choose.

I was initially looking at the EF70-200mm f/2.8L IS II to compliment my EF 24-70mm f/2.8L on a 60D body, but the price is quite prohibiting.

I have both lenses, while I like the extra 100mm focal distance the 300mm gives you over the 200mm, it can't beat the sharpness of the 200mm. The 300mm is a bit dull and softer -which is great if you like that sort of imagery- when compared to the 200mm. In addition, the 200mm has a constant aperture of F/4 meaning if you're shooting video the exposure levels won't shift as it does with the 300mm as you're zooming in or zooming out.

True that.

But you CAN get sharp images out of the 70-300 with some PP. For many shots I took near 300mm, I messed around with the unsharp mask- boosted the sharpening from +3 to +6 and boom, it was just as sharp as the 70-200.

The images are definitely softer out of camera, though.

Anyone who has the 135L - is the focus fast enough for indoor sports use?

Absolutely - AF is very fast on the 135L.  It's great for head/shoulders portraits (on FF), and also an excellent lens for indoor sports (although with the 5DII, the AF system is somewhat limiting - it does better on the 7D for that use).

Cool. Thanks for the response! I wondered how it compared to say, the 85 1.8 which I used to have- it was quite fast.

Anyone who has the 135L - is the focus fast enough for indoor sports use?

I have the 35L but I use it on a 1.6x body which gives me an excellent FOV (similar to what 50mm gives you on a FF). I'd say it's my sharpest lens. Outstanding all the way down to f/2. Softens a bit once you open up to f/1.4 but still very useable. May be better on FF, but not sure.

Lenses / Re: Better lens for use in reception/dark room situation
« on: May 12, 2011, 03:01:34 AM »
I find that it's in line with my 24-105 in terms of quality- very good. Exactly what I wanted.

I don't intend on replacing my 24-105 with this, however, for general walkaround use...the 24-105 has a better feel and greater reach which is more useful to me outdoors - I used the "old" 17-50 mainly indoors for events (it was my 2nd most frequently used lens, behind the 24-105), and the 17-55 will now assume that role. Can't wait to put it to some good use next week!

Thanks again for your comments- I know I took a completely different route than what was suggested, haha- but I'm confident it was the right move. Not that the extra 5mm gets me the reach I would have liked, but definitely will be nice to have a 2.8 lens that I can actually use AT 2.8 with confidence. In many ways that's even better.

Lenses / Re: Better lens for use in reception/dark room situation
« on: May 10, 2011, 06:08:51 PM »
Just decided to trade in 17-50 for Canon 17-55 :) Wow, what a difference. Fast, accurate AF, moderately sharp picture at 2.8...should have done this a while ago!

Site Information / Re: What originally brought you to canon rumors?
« on: May 09, 2011, 02:20:00 PM »
I believe I first discovered this site through rumors of the Rebel T2i replacement (the T3i), which was a camera I had (my first DSLR). But what made me come back again was the rumor in Feb about an EF-S 15-60mm f2.8 supposedly due this month.

When the 60D came out, I wasn't too hot on it at first, but once the price started to drop, factors compounded and in one of the FEW "impulse" decisions I've ever made on a purchase, decided to trade in the T2i for the 60D. Don't regret it one bit.

In the meantime I have collected a few lenses. Currently what keeps me visiting is the rumors of a replacement to the Canon 17-55 and 24-70- I have the Tamron 17-50VC which has served me well in the year+ that I've had it- but its few shortcomings (softness at f2.8, corners, focus) have left me wanting a little more. I keep hearing of issues with the 17-55 which keep scaring me away every time I feel attracted to it. I keep wondering whether it's worth the risk, or to wait for the replacement which, now with what's going on, may not come for another year or so...

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS or EF 70-200mm f/4L IS
« on: May 09, 2011, 12:30:32 PM »

Another point against the 70-300L IS is the variable aperture.  I shoot mostly events in lowlight.

I can tell you right now that the 70-300 is NOT a low-light lens. My primary use for that lens is animals and flowers during the daytime (also, special outdoor events), when there is enough light. Once evening hits, the ISO speeds quickly go up. The IS, however, is excellent and can counter the effect somewhat- but I was out one late evening, and in the shade I was already hitting ISO 3200 at f5.6.

Frankly, the 70-200 f4 is not a low-light lens either, but the main difference is that if you're inside, there is a HUGE difference between f4 and f5.6. f4 can mean getting the shot if it's well- or moderately-lit, the subject is standing relatively still, and you don't mind a bit of noise. If there is any kind of quick movement you wish to freeze indoors, you can forget about either of these lenses. Of course, if you're going to be using a flash, all this doesn't really matter too much.

Lenses / Re: Better lens for use in reception/dark room situation
« on: May 05, 2011, 12:05:02 PM »
Again, thanks for your replies!

If I absolutely needed a full-frame camera I would probably rent one rather than upgrade to one- I personally prefer the extra reach the 1.6x factor on the crop cameras gives me with my telephoto lenses.

If the AF assist lamp is active, the 24-105mm should focus equivalent to the 17-50mm.  While it's true that the f/4 lens does not activate the high-precision f/2.8-sensitive center AF point, if you're shooting at f/5.6 that won't really matter (in the sense that you'll have a deeper DoF to work with).  If anything, the 24-105mm may focus a little faster, too.

Ah, I see. So I take it the flash assist lamp will help any lens focus equivalently and the max aperture of the lens becomes irrelevant then. What I might do is conduct some experiments shortly before the event to see, but this is promising. Thanks, I appreciate it!

Actually, at last year's event I was using a Rebel T2i with the Tamron 17-50, so it's possible that the 60D may be a little bit better on that front. Already, in good light I'm noticing a better focus hit rate with the 60D than with the T2i (it's slight, but BELIEVE ME it makes a difference), so who knows.

WarStreet is correct about the 5DII in low light.  My 7D outperformed the Rebel T1i that I had previously, but the 5DII can lock focus in light so dim the 7D fails (using the 5DII's center AF point, that is - the peripheral AF points on the 5DII, for lack of a better word, suck).  But the AF assist lamp evens the field.


if the 24mm of the 24-105L works for you on the wide group shot, why not get the 24-70 2.8 instead?

I was initially thinking of getting the 24-70, but ultimately the lack of IS on that lens drove me towards the 24-105. I figured the loss of a stop could be made up with IS, since I wasn't planning on stopping action with it (it's also lighter, has more reach, and therefore is better as a general walkaround). At the time I was looking for a step up from the 18-55 stock lens.

If ever a 24-70 IS came out, though...(come on canon, you can do it  :D)

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS or EF 70-200mm f/4L IS
« on: May 04, 2011, 11:30:28 PM »
Hmm, depends on what environment you'll be shooting in. If you absolutely NEED that focal range RIGHT NOW, then it can't hurt to get the f4 version now and trade up later. (the lens will hold most of its value)

If you're looking to shoot indoors, in the evening/night hours, though- you'll probably often find yourself at ISO 3200 or higher at maxed-out f4. If you can deal with the noise, you can save major $$ and weight.

Or, you might be able to get a good deal on version 1 of the f2.8 IS.

Lenses / Re: Better lens for use in reception/dark room situation
« on: May 04, 2011, 07:06:04 PM »
Thanks for your comments so far, guys.

Ok... this can get into a huge debate... but I am a wedding photographer by trade and shoot A LOT of low light scenes.  From my assessment of your post, I would first recommend the Canon 85mm f1.8.  It is very sharp at all apertures and is very fast focusing.  The combination of fast focus, large aperture, and medium length sounds as if this lens would help you tremendously.  So why not the 85mm f1.2L, you ask?  I have used it a dozen or so times, and it is much slower to focus even on my 7D, which has a superior AF system to even my 5DII.
Hope this helps!

I actually used to have the Canon 85mm 1.8 lens (I sold that along with the 70-200 f4 in order to get the f2.8 version), and I decided to try that lens at last year's party. I actually ended up finding it a bit awkward/long on my 1.6x body, so I switched to the Tamron 17-50 and used that for the rest of the evening.

I suppose I should list the lenses I currently have...I would like to use one or more of these, rather than rent/buy another one:

Tamron 17-50 f2.8 (VC version)
Canon 24-105 f4
Canon 70-200 f2.8 (IS version 2)
Canon 35mm f1.4
Canon 70-300 f4-5.6

Ideally I want something I can get group shots with (only the wide end of the 17-50 and 24-105 would allow for that, so that's why I mentioned those two). For this year's event I was thinking of starting off with the 35mm 1.4 to shoot in available light until they turn off the lights and everyone's present, then switch to either the 17-50 (or 24-105 if there is convincing evidence that the slower speed won't affect focusing) and put on the flash unit. The reason why I'd switch out is that 35mm is not long enough to get close-up shots, nor wide enough to get a large group photo- and there is limited space to back up/move around. Also, many times I'm let down by the Tamron's performance "wide open" at f2.8 (lack of sharpness, completely misses focus sometimes in low light) and the 35mm 1.4 stopped down to 2.8 absolutely smokes the Tamron.

If you have the flash attached you can ask it to project the red focus assist grid, if you don't want to flash you can turn the flash off and have the focus assist still active.  This way the camera should focus in the dark if it really has to.

If I recall correctly, this is what I used before. It is often dark enough that the red light has to come on to help with focus anyway. I was simply wondering if I used the 24-105 in place of the 17-50, whether the camera would struggle with focus more.

Lenses / Better lens for use in reception/dark room situation
« on: May 04, 2011, 03:45:08 PM »
Hey all,

I just had a quick question. I've used a T2i along with the Tamron 17-50 2.8 VC lens and a 580ex II flash with decent results at parties/receptions (I've since sold the T2i and got a 60D). Only issue is, there are times where I find that 50mm isn't always enough reach, particularly for getting close-ups, etc. On the other hand, I love the 17mm end because I can get whole groups in the frame easily.

Now, I also have the Canon 24-105 f4 lens which I use as a general walkaround lens. I was thinking whether this would work in taking flash photos in near dark situations but I've heard that slower lenses aren't quite as accurate at focusing in low light situations? Anyone tried using the 24-105 in a reception situation with the 60D/Rebel cameras and got good results, no issues with focus, etc.? I'd love to have the extra reach of 105mm if possible. In this case, the 1-stop difference between the 2 lenses isn't really an issue because I'll be shooting at f5.6 with flash anyway.

Not a pro or anything- simply a hobbyist, I'd like to know what you all think. I'd figure if the f4 lenses aren't as reliable in low-light that I might be better off with the 17-50 anyway.

Lenses / Re: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS or EF 70-200mm f/4L IS
« on: May 03, 2011, 11:58:37 PM »
Hi, I have used both lenses. I used to have the 70-200 f4 which was an excellent lens, very sharp and high quality- at least in good lighting. But occasionally I'd use it indoors and thought I could do better with the noise levels, so I decided to go for the 2.8 version. But in the meantime, I decided to get the 70-300 f4-5.6 for use outside.

Differences I've found between the two lenses- the biggest things are

1) the extra 100mm, which is actually not much, but in practice I found it has made a difference for me. This lens really shines at 300mm BTW.

2) the variable aperture. The 70-300 is only f4 up to just past 100mm, and by 200mm you're at f5- whereas with the 70-200 you have f4 through the entire range.

3) I also found the 70-300 to not be quite as sharp as the 70-200, particularly at 70mm. The images are still very, very good- but the 70-200 was exceptional.

4) The 70-300 is quite a bit heavier than the 70-200. However, it is shorter (and fatter). That said, I had no issues hiking with it. But I suppose your mileage may vary depending on what you're used to carrying around.

5) The 70-300 extends its barrel while you zoom, while the 70-200 is all internal.

All in all, I'd say the two lenses have their own uses. I'd figure I'd just use the 2.8 when I need the light, so I use the 70-300 outdoors in good light and the variable aperture isn't an issue (although it took some getting used to since all my other lenses are constant aperture). It really comes down to whether you'd rather have constant aperture or extra reach. Both lenses are high-quality and I'd say you'd be hard-pressed to go wrong with either.

Hope this helps, at least a little bit. This is just my personal experience though.

maybe the 70-200 Non-IS version plus the 2x extender? I have that combo (but the IS version) and it is amazing. With the 2x extender, you lens become a 400mm f 5.6 since you lose 2 stops. Constant aperture is important to me since I'm  video guy.

Hmm...I know Canon actually makes a 400mm f5.6 lens for about the same price of the 2.8 non-IS- so if you don't need the versatility of the zoom, I think you'll get better quality out of that than the 70-200+2x.

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