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Author Topic: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D  (Read 11121 times)

Pix8ion

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Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« on: May 18, 2012, 09:59:50 AM »
Good morning all!  I'm new to the forum (and to photography) and this is my first post...so please excuse any noob errors.

I've been looking at getting into a DSLR for several years now, but just haven't bit the bullet so to speak.  Up 'til now, I've just had compact digitals and supplemented them with camera phones for the on-the-go, spontaneous pics.  While the quality of the pics from the compact digitals has been decent, I'm growing ever more frustrated with their lack of flexibility and speed.  Now, with a growing family and summer vacations on the way, I think now is the time to jump in.

I've been doing quite a bit of research and have finally settled down on the 60D -- even though a newer model might be coming out in the near future, I'm not sure I can postpone any longer. 

As for lenses, I've been looking at the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS & the 55-250mm f/4-5.6.  My reasoning is that  at this point, I want to limit the number of lenses to choose from while out but still have flexibility for multiple shots.  I know that there are better options, particularly when looking at fixed focal length lenses, but I don't think that I want to go down that route just yet.

So....my question to the experts out there is: "What are your thoughts on my choices?  Is this a decent set-up for someone just starting out, or are there better options?"  Any thoughts, suggestions are welcome. 

Thanks, in advance, for all the help!  Cheers!

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Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« on: May 18, 2012, 09:59:50 AM »

Act444

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2012, 11:04:15 AM »
Hi,

First of all, welcome!

Two and a half years ago, I was in the same exact position you were, just starting out with a DSLR, frustrated with the awful, red-eye-laden shots my P&S was taking in indoor, low-light situations. There was definitely a learning curve once I did get my DSLR (I started out with a Rebel T2i)- my initial shots weren't much better than my P&S shots, kept getting blurry/OOF shots and wasn't really sure why it was happening. Long story short, to take full advantage of the new features and additional control I now had, I had to read up all on the basics of photography, talk to people, and practice- learn through trial and error. You'll find out that things as small as the way you hold the camera, your stance, etc. can affect the quality of pictures you get. Until good technique is achieved, it really doesn't matter what lens you start out with- the photos will likely look the same.

What I did was I got my T2i/kit lens combo, used that to get comfortable with the camera, learn it, etc. As soon as I was ready to do some serious work with it though, I immediately ditched the kit lens and went for something better (the 24-105 f4). You can go ahead and start out with the 60D and 18-135 if you want- but I think you'll find that as you improve, you'll want a better quality lens. The T3i/60D/7D/5DIII are truly high-megapixel beasts that demand high-quality lenses if you ever want to see their full potential. If you want to jump right in, you might want to think about a cheaper body (a Rebel series) and use the money saved to get something like the 15-85mm lens (praised highly by many people here). When it comes to picture quality, the lens is really what's most important. You'll get higher quality shots with a Rebel and a 15-85 or 50mm than you would with a 60D or 7D with 18-135 or 18-200.

Kind of long, but hope this helps.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 11:24:22 AM by Act444 »

RC

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2012, 11:23:38 AM »
Not claiming to be an "expert" by any means but my first advice would be to put your money in glass.   I would seriously consider the 15-85 over the 18-135 for IQ reasons.  Also the 15-85 is a bit wider making it 24mm (FF equivalent) which is great for landscapes and the build quality is better.  Both have the same variable apertures so that is a wash.

Second, hold off on the 55-250 until you have had time to learn your camera and body.  Chances are very likely that you will want a higher IQ lens than the 55-250 and you may discover that you might want a different focal length.

Have not shot with a 60D but I think that is an excellent choice (I have a 7D).  I think you will find a lot of ergonomic benefit from a larger body (like the 60D) over the Rebels--of course is all personal preference.

It doesn't look like the the 60D is sold in a kit with the 15-85 so you may have to buy them separate.  If budget is not an issue, consider the 17-55 which also has excellent IQ, and a constant 2.8 aperture.

Good luck and let us know your decisions.


15-85 review
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-S-15-85mm-f-3.5-5.6-IS-USM-Lens-Review.aspx

18-135 review
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-S-18-135mm-f-3.5-5.6-IS-Lens-Review.aspx

55-250 Review
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-S-55-250mm-f-4-5.6-IS-Lens-Review.aspx

atvinyard

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2012, 11:44:45 AM »
60D is a nice camera, with a nice set of controls for manual mode.  If you get one, you have to learn how to use manual mode, otherwise it's a waste and you should go for one of the rebels instead (they're still very nice compared to a point and shoot).

So... if you plan to learn to use it, get the 60D.  If you plan to use it in auto mode like a point and shoot, get a rebel.

My wife loves her 18-135.  It takes good pictures. The rebel kit with the 18-55 and the 55-250 is what I started out with.  Very versatile.  The lenses are both pretty good considering what they cost.  Also, seriously consider picking up a canon 50mm f/1.8 lens. It's the supreme DSLR beginners lens and they only cost around $100 US.  Sharp and good in low light.

On top of that, I would look at buying a copy of Adobe Lightroom for photo editing. It's a very capable program that's fairly easy to learn how to use and will really help you to get the best out of the photos you take.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 11:47:56 AM by atvinyard »
Canon 6D, Canon 5Dc, Rebel T2i, Canon EF-S 10-22, Sigma 35/1.4, Olympus OM Zuiko 21/3.5, 24/2.8,  28/2, 40/2, 50/1.4, 50/3.5 macro, 100/2.8, Canon EF 20/2.8, 35/2 IS, 40/2.8, 50/1.4, 85/1.8, 200/2.8L, Contax/Zeiss 28/2.8, 50/1.7, 85/1.4, 135/2.8, Soligor 135/2

Orangutan

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2012, 11:52:54 AM »
Different models have different capabilities, and may suit different needs.  Here are the criteria you mentioned:

"flexibility and speed.  Now, with a growing family and summer vacations on the way..."

How old are your children?  Will they stand still for a photo, or do have under-10's who never stop moving?  I have a 60D and I like it.  The autofocus works well, but is not perfect.  My first recommendation is to think more carefully about examples of photos you would regret missing, that will help you decide which features are essential.

+ If you have perpetual-motion children and don't want to miss anything, get a 7D: people just love the autofocus.  It has (nearly) the same photo quality as the 60D.  You might consider a used or refurb 7D if money is a concern.

+ If your children move slower or will pose, the 60D would be a good choice, as might a T3i.

Another option: try to borrow or rent one to get a sense of it.  There's a big difference between P&S and DSLR.




sanjosedave

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2012, 11:59:06 AM »
I recently bought a 60D and like it. I'd suggest trying to budget for L glass, image quality is king.

As for software, I use Photoshop Elements 10 to edit and Picassa to manage images. Most of the 3rd party edit apps from Nik, Alien and Topaz work with Elements.

Bruce Photography

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2012, 12:01:21 PM »
Over the years I have bought quite a bit of Canon gear and most of their lenses.  When it came time to grab a camera and lens to go to San Francisco and visit museums, the tea garden, and the botantical gardens I wanted to use just one lens.  I chose the 60D with the 18-200 because of the sharpness and versatility.  When I got home I had a couple of thousand images and they were all great.  To keep things simple I chose manual mode using 5.6 most of the time at 1/125.  I set my ISO at auto with a limit of 3200.  I then proceded to shoot inside, outside, and even in the dark deyoung museum (sorry but I don't know how to spell it).  Talk about simple. 

Now perhaps I just got lucky with my copy of the 18-200 but I'm very happy with my results.  Another piece of honesty:  I only shoot raw and I use Lightroom 4 and Photoshop CS6 and I've invested my time in knowing them pretty well.  But at some point in your future, you will too.  The images you take today will last into your families future.  I know the 60D with the 18-200 can now be had for $1299 and I think it represents the best value that Canon offers.  I never want to let go of my 60D and 18-200 combination - what a great setup!  Even the batteries can last for the entire day of shooting.
   
P.S. Don't bother with the 18-135 - what a piece of junk.  Not even a lens creep lock (18-200 does have a lock).  I do like the 15-85 but really not long enough for traveling.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 12:04:55 PM by Bruce Photography »

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2012, 12:01:21 PM »

whatta

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2012, 12:21:28 PM »
If I could not wait than I would get the 60d too.
Canon 400d | efs 15-85 | efs 60/2.8 | Sigma 30/1.4 | (broken efs 17-85)

preppyak

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2012, 12:21:34 PM »
P.S. Don't bother with the 18-135 - what a piece of junk.  Not even a lens creep lock (18-200 does have a lock).  I do like the 15-85 but really not long enough for traveling.
Funny, I had the opposite experience, I hated the 18-200 (found it unusable for wide shots because of the distortion, and not very sharp on the long end), but I liked the 18-135, even though its far from perfect. And I never had issues with zoom creep on the 18-135, but the 18-200 needed the lock badly

That said, my suggestion is that you go with a T3i over the 60D and use the extra money to get the 50mm f/1.8. If what you're finding frustrating is the lack of speed, the ultra-zooms won't solve that problem. All of them are gonna be f/5.6 for most of their range, which won't be any faster or handle low-light any better than your point and shoot. The 50mm f/1.8 will, and by a significant margin. You'd still get one of the zooms, because they'll work great outdoors, but you'll have versatility that way.

Another way you could consider going is getting one of the 17-50 f/2.8 lenses from Tamron. It's basically the same cost as the 18-135, but, you'll likely find it much more useful. Then you can supplement that with the 55-250 for use outdoors when you want more range. Also, many places are currently running promos, you can probably get the 55-250 for damn near free, since its $150 off when purchased with one of the bodies. At that price, its worth it.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 12:23:05 PM by preppyak »

robbymack

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2012, 01:07:10 PM »
let me first say, "welcome to a lifetime of always wanting more gear!"

You can't go wrong with the 60D, but other than build there is little difference between it and a t3i.  Since this is your first dive into the DSLR world I'd save the few $100 on the camera.  In fact since a t4i is likely to be released soon if you can hold off a month or two then you could pick up a new t3i on the cheap.  As for lens, the kit 18-55 is junk, but a good starter.  From my experience the 18-135 is better than the 18-200, but different strokes for different folks.  A lot of people like the 15-85 or even the 28-135, but you honestly aren't getting any real stellar lens out of that line up so just go with what feels right to you.  I think the 18-135 is a great starter you can go from moderate wide to moderate telephoto in one piece of kit.  I still have the one I purchased several years ago and it is permanently attached to an older rebel that makes appearances on vacations and when ever my wife wants to take photos.  Stop it down to f7.1-f11 and it takes decent to pretty good shots.  If you can swing it get the 17-55 f2.8, that is, by and large, the best zoom for crop senors.  If not and you pick up one of the super zooms above do yourself a favor and pick up a 50 f1.8 or if you want to spend a little more a 50 f1.4, 28 f1.8, or 85 f1.8.  Lastly as above a good imaging program is needed.  Lightroom, or if you own a Mac, Aperture are both the places to start.  IMHO Aperture beats the tails off of Lightroom simply because your workflow is streamlined.  Good luck and happy shooting!

briansquibb

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2012, 01:11:53 PM »
With my 40D I used the 18-55 and 55-250.

Both were excellent lens for the price

40D with 55-250@100 - the 60D should give a better image than this

« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 01:14:21 PM by briansquibb »

well_dunno

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2012, 02:01:12 PM »
Welcome to the forums!

I will repeat what has been said earlier in the thread - the camera sees things through the lens so without good lens it does not matter how good of a camera you have. All lenses have their strong and weak points and can provide good results at their best. The more you spend on the gear, the more freedom you get to achieve good results in other words.

Not sure about your budget, but if it allows 17-55 f/2.8 IS  or 15-85 f/3.5-5.6 IS (if those are too expensive  Tamron 17-55 f/2.8 the non stabilized version) and 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS would be the lenses I would pick. The 70-300 is an EF mount so if you happen to decide shooting with full frame cameras some day, it will still be usable. The first three are only compatible with the APS-C cameras as you are probably aware.

Also, if on limited budget, picking a lesser body -Rebel line/550D-600D - and use the difference for getting better lenses can give you better results. You can find quite a few lens reviews at photozone.de

As for software - open source GIMP

Cheers!

well_dunno

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2012, 02:05:00 PM »
With my 40D I used the 18-55 and 55-250.

Both were excellent lens for the price

40D with 55-250@100 - the 60D should give a better image than this

Nice shot Brian!

Didn't the cat get annoyed by the flash? A friend of mine got bitten by his cat due to flash firing  :D

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2012, 02:05:00 PM »

dstppy

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2012, 02:53:51 PM »

Nice shot Brian!

Didn't the cat get annoyed by the flash? A friend of mine got bitten by his cat due to flash firing  :D

Sounds like a nice set of fur gloves to me.

The 60D is a great camera coming from P&S cameras, but the T4i is going to be a super shooter if they put DigicV in it.  At very least, wait until next month to figure out what the 'new cameras' are, most likely the price of the 60D will only improve.

Craig was nice enough to reply to an e-mail to me a few years back and recommended the 60D and the 15-85mm, which was a great setup.  The only changeout I might suggest is the 24-105mmL which I got afterwards, but the 15 is nice on the crop body.

If you at all care about image quality, I really would shy away from cheaper glass over 100mm --- I have a 70-300 that I just plain hate.  Honestly, I got a used 200mm F 2.8 L and I love it.  I use it on my FF or with a TC (1.4) on my 60D with a monopod and lens ring and it's just awesome what I can get out of it.

So, in short (too late), go with a cheaper body and better glass if you can.  LightRoom (and other software) have lens-specific correction for vignetting and barrel distortion, making lenses like the 15-85mm comparable to an L lens in a lot of circumstances.

Also, don't be afraid of used gear (lensrentals has a buy area that I've gotten 3 lenses from).

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briansquibb

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2012, 02:59:28 PM »
With my 40D I used the 18-55 and 55-250.

Both were excellent lens for the price

40D with 55-250@100 - the 60D should give a better image than this

Nice shot Brian!

Didn't the cat get annoyed by the flash? A friend of mine got bitten by his cat due to flash firing  :D

No flash - it was in his favourite place in the greenhouse.

I like your choice of lens - cheap and good. Get them used and they will be a lot of bang for your buck. Buy new and you lose a lot as you walk out of the store - same with the body ....

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Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2012, 02:59:28 PM »