Well, so far I've only used point-and-shoot cameras in my life. I'm at a point where I want to make the jump to DSLR and really get serious about photography (still a hobby though), so I'm currently trying to decide what I'd need to buy. I'm also reading tons of materials on photography, watching videos, anything I can absorb to learn more. I also love to read tons of reviews but right now I think I've read so much I'm just completely confused. Hopefully you guys can help me a bit
What I enjoy to photograph, in order (unfortunately, everything) :
The body is set in stone, I'm really going for the Canon EOS 7D Mark II (getting the body only though, no kit lens).
As for each category, some I know what to get and some I'm not sure anymore.
- Wildlife (and some sports) : Going for the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM (decided)
- Landscape : I don't know anymore.. any help appreciated
- Macro : Canon EF 100MM F2.8 L Macro IS USM (decided, might buy a bit later though)
- Portraits : I don't know anymore.. any help appreciated
I am hoping to combine the Landscape and Portraits into one lens, if possible (but a quality one). That would help keep the cost down and also to not switch lens too often. Would be great on trips to just carry one lens while walking. I do take a lot more landscape photos than portrait though. I would prefer (and feel safer) if that lens had image stabilization. I'd say my budget for that combined lens would be 1500$ or lower (lower would be nice of course!).
Some lens I've looked into so far :
- Canon EF 24-70mm f/4 L IS USM (could come with the body as a very nice rebate)
- Canon EF-S 10-22MM 3.5-4.5 USM
- Canon EF 35MM F1.4L USM
- Canon EF 16-35MM F2.8 L II USM LENS
Please keep in mind that this is a crop body so I need something that will still be able to get some beautiful large landscapes, if possible!
Thank you for any help
Here are some choices I would consider for landscape/standard zoom (in order of priority):
1. 17-55 f/2.8 IS: provides a longer range, so you can use it for portraits on crop, has IS, about $ 800, very sharp and an excellent lens to boot
2. 15-85 f/3.5-5.6 IS: much longer range and therefore very versatile, has IS, about $ 600, as sharp as the 17-55.
3. 16-35 f/4 L IS: good focal length on crops for landscape, has IS, about 1.2K, tack sharp acc. to reviews
[I would advice against the 16-35 f/2.8 as it provides narrower range, no IS, and is not very sharp wide open according to most users. I haven't used it, and it is probably a great lens on FF- but provides NO advantage over the 17-55 on crop sensors, especially since you are probably not switching to FF right after buying a brand new lens. The 24-70 is not a good range on crop if you shoot landscapes more and don't KNOW yet if you will be satisfied being limited to a 35mm FF equivalent. The 35/1.4 is a great lens on FF and a fantastic street/low light full body portrait lens on crop. It is a great lens if you are okay with a limited focal length, but probably not the ideal first lens to buy]
Options 1 and 2 will let you avoid getting a portrait lens for a while. Both lenses are very usable wide open, and 50-55mm is a great range for portrait on APS-C. On the other hand, 3 and 4 are far better lenses for landscape and generally newer, sharper lenses, but will require you get a separate portrait lens.
I didn't mention the 18-135 because the 15-85 is a far better choice IMO- the difference between 15mm and 18mm is significant on the wide end, but on the tele end 85mm-135mm might not be that beneficial, especially if you have a dedicated tele lens. Plus the IQ and build quality is significantly better on the 15-85 wrt the 18-135. And I feel STM is too slow and noisy compared to USM, but that might just be me (it's okay on the pancakes, tho').
Here are some portrait choices:
1. As Neuro mentioned: 85/1.8 if you prefer headshots
2. 50/1.8 or 50/1.4 if you prefer more half-body traditional portraits: DO NOT get the 50/1.4 if you are getting the 17-55. The 50/1.4 isn't that sharp wider than f/2.8 and the 17-55 is better wide open than the 50mm at the same aperture. You can, however, get the 50/1.8 as it will serve as a low-light lens in a pinch and has a really low price. In fact, I almost always recommend the 50/1.8 as the first prime as the images wide open will feel like magic (yeah, the 50/1.4 is slightly better but not worth the extra price IMO given its performance below f/2.8 ).
By the way, the 18-55mm is a perfectly capable lens for all the purposes. So you might just want to use it for a year or so until you know what you want and then make a more informed purchase.