Hello. Long time reader, first time posting ^_^
I have finally decided to dive into the world of photography and am planning to do that with the release of 650D.
Want to pick it up as a "body-only" and purchase the lenses separately.
The first one, which I am almost 100% positive about is the 50mm f/1.4 USM or 50mm f/1.4 II if it is going to be announced before the shipping date of 650D.
The second one I consider purchasing is Sigma 17-70 f/2.8-4 DC Macro OS HSM.
What I was wondering about is if there are any zooms within this price range that might be a better option than this Sigma?
Thank you for the input!
I strongly recommend the following. Especially because you have $2500 to spend. That is a lot of money to get a nice gear with an outlook towards the future.
The body I recommend getting a second hand 450D. This is because you will learn all you can possible learn on the 650D on the 450D. It is the most popular canon dslr even now. Because it is a significantly step up from the 400D with regards to the screen size and live view. With the 500D, 550D and 600D the only improvements are the only slightly larger sensor size, high ISO ( 3200 and 6400 but these are not really useable), and also video. The reason for the 450D is that it is very cheap. You can get a second hand one on ebay for £250 max.
If you want to shoot video, then get a second hand 550D. It has the same size sensor as the 600D, 60d and the 7D, so you wont notice any significant image improvement. And it shoots video. of course it is slightly more expensive. There is little point getting a new entry level camera, I made that mistake. It is expensive and by the time you are good enough to shoot photography, a newer body is out and I bet you will want to go full frame then. So save your money, get a cheap body. Now the lenses,
As everyone will tell you, put all your money into lenses. And good lenses. This is because they preserve their value unlike the body that drops in price. Ideally you want to buy the best canon glass. Sigma lenses drop value very fast. finally you want to buy the Full frame lenses. Because you are thinking long term as you will move into full frame eventually. And you wont have to change lenses. The EF-S lenses for APS-C bodies like the 600D are not as good in terms of build and image quality.
You mentioned the 50mm 1.4. It is a very nice lense on full frame. It is rather tight on the cropped body. But it is a lense you should buy because you will learn that
1) primes offers the best IQ
2) and you will appreciate why the fast lenses with large aperatures are more expeive and desirable with that 1.4.
May i reccommend putting your money into a 24-105 f/4 or a 24-70 f/2.8 lens. The 24-70 MKI is selling quite cheap as the MKII is coming out. You could afford to buy that and still have loads of cash left. Another idea is to buy the 24-70 MKII new with a used 450D body. Then a year later, you can afford to throw away that body, and if you are ready to move into full frame, the 24-70 MKII will be awesome as it seems to be a amazing lens looking at the MTF chart. The downside is that you will lose a bit of money on the MKII lens a year later. So both MKI and MKII 24-70 are worth to look at.
Just my 2 cent and my experiences. Ive had loads of cheaper EF-S lenses, tamron lenses, sigma lenses, started with super zooms, and slow aperatures, but like everyone else, I learnt about he L lenses, the fast aperatures. I hope you will get there without spending too much unecessary money, and in as short amout of time as possible.
p.s. The sigma f/1.4 is much better than the canon 1.4 USM. It is more expensive. The bokeh you get is much better. it is also significantly heavier. You can find one second hand that will help to reduce the price.