Newbie lense question

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Dennis McCrohan, Apr 10, 2006.

  1. Hi-

    We finally made the step up from a digital point-n-shoot to a Canon Digital
    Rebel this weekend. This first upgrade that we clearly need is a telephoto
    lense in the 70-200 or 70-300 range. It appears that Canon, Tamron, and
    Quantaray all sell 70-300mm telephoto, non-IS lenses for around $150 retail.
    I've done a little bit of googling, and it appears that not everyone who has
    bought a Canon EF 70-300 has been terribly happy with it. I've seen some
    comments alluding to the fact that it may not be usable above 200mm, even
    with a tripod.

    So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and whether
    any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly amateur
    picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense will be able
    to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing sports outdoors. For
    this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a tripod.

    Thanks,

    -dm
    Dennis McCrohan, Apr 10, 2006
    #1
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  2. > So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    > inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and
    > whether any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly
    > amateur picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense
    > will be able to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing sports
    > outdoors. For this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a tripod.


    Here is a link to a shot taken with a Canon 75-300 IS lens at full zoom:

    http://home.comcast.net/~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/site1056.jpg

    I also have the big and heavy and expensive Canon 100-400 L lens and have
    shot test (using a tripod) pictures with both lenses at 300 mm. The L glass
    is indeed noticeably sharper, but not so much so that most folks would
    notice. When I bought the L lens, I intended to sell the 75-300 ... but
    after hefting the L lens and comparing shots, I kept the 75-300 ... it's a
    lens that I can walk around with and still get some good wildlife shots.
    Charles Schuler, Apr 10, 2006
    #2
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  3. "Charles Schuler" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    >
    >> So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    >> inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and
    >> whether any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly
    >> amateur picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense
    >> will be able to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing
    >> sports outdoors. For this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a
    >> tripod.

    >
    > Here is a link to a shot taken with a Canon 75-300 IS lens at full zoom:
    >
    > http://home.comcast.net/~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/site1056.jpg
    >
    > I also have the big and heavy and expensive Canon 100-400 L lens and have
    > shot test (using a tripod) pictures with both lenses at 300 mm. The L
    > glass is indeed noticeably sharper, but not so much so that most folks
    > would notice. When I bought the L lens, I intended to sell the 75-300 ...
    > but after hefting the L lens and comparing shots, I kept the 75-300 ...
    > it's a lens that I can walk around with and still get some good wildlife
    > shots.
    >

    Thanks, but I'm not really looking at the image-stabalization option. After
    just investing $700 in the camera, it would be an impossible sell to the
    wife. I had already prepared her for "about $150" in further expense... so
    that's probably it! So I'm probably stuck doing the best I can with a non-IS
    telephoto lense and the monopole. Which makes me wonder whether 300mm is
    even realistic, maybe I should only get a xx-200mm zoom?

    Amazon is currently offering a Sigma 70-300 F/4-5.6 (which I gather is the
    same as a Quantaray) for $120, so right at the moment I'm leaning in that
    direction....

    Thanks,

    -dm
    Dennis McCrohan, Apr 10, 2006
    #3
  4. Dennis McCrohan

    JohnR66 Guest

    "Dennis McCrohan" <> wrote in message
    news:e1em1q$...
    >
    > "Charles Schuler" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    >>
    >>
    >>> So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    >>> inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and
    >>> whether any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly
    >>> amateur picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense
    >>> will be able to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing
    >>> sports outdoors. For this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a
    >>> tripod.

    >>
    >> Here is a link to a shot taken with a Canon 75-300 IS lens at full zoom:
    >>
    >> http://home.comcast.net/~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/site1056.jpg
    >>
    >> I also have the big and heavy and expensive Canon 100-400 L lens and have
    >> shot test (using a tripod) pictures with both lenses at 300 mm. The L
    >> glass is indeed noticeably sharper, but not so much so that most folks
    >> would notice. When I bought the L lens, I intended to sell the 75-300
    >> ... but after hefting the L lens and comparing shots, I kept the 75-300
    >> ... it's a lens that I can walk around with and still get some good
    >> wildlife shots.
    >>

    > Thanks, but I'm not really looking at the image-stabalization option.
    > After just investing $700 in the camera, it would be an impossible sell to
    > the wife. I had already prepared her for "about $150" in further
    > expense... so that's probably it! So I'm probably stuck doing the best I
    > can with a non-IS telephoto lense and the monopole. Which makes me wonder
    > whether 300mm is even realistic, maybe I should only get a xx-200mm zoom?
    >
    > Amazon is currently offering a Sigma 70-300 F/4-5.6 (which I gather is the
    > same as a Quantaray) for $120, so right at the moment I'm leaning in that
    > direction....
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > -dm
    >
    >

    Take a good look at the EF 80-200 II. While not as long as the 75-300mm,
    Canon's own MTF charts show it is sharper at the longest zoom setting. It is
    much smaller, lighter and through reliable mail order, it is in the $110
    price range.

    John
    JohnR66, Apr 11, 2006
    #4
  5. Dennis McCrohan

    jimn Guest

    "Dennis McCrohan" <> wrote
    >
    >"Charles Schuler" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >>
    >>
    >>> So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    >>> inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and
    >>> whether any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly
    >>> amateur picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense
    >>> will be able to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing
    >>> sports outdoors. For this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a
    >>> tripod.

    >>
    >> Here is a link to a shot taken with a Canon 75-300 IS lens at full zoom:
    >>
    >> http://home.comcast.net/~charlesschuler/wsb/media/291308/site1056.jpg
    >>
    >> I also have the big and heavy and expensive Canon 100-400 L lens and have
    >> shot test (using a tripod) pictures with both lenses at 300 mm. The L
    >> glass is indeed noticeably sharper, but not so much so that most folks
    >> would notice. When I bought the L lens, I intended to sell the 75-300 ...
    >> but after hefting the L lens and comparing shots, I kept the 75-300 ...
    >> it's a lens that I can walk around with and still get some good wildlife
    >> shots.
    >>

    >Thanks, but I'm not really looking at the image-stabalization option. After
    >just investing $700 in the camera, it would be an impossible sell to the
    >wife. I had already prepared her for "about $150" in further expense... so
    >that's probably it! So I'm probably stuck doing the best I can with a non-IS
    >telephoto lense and the monopole. Which makes me wonder whether 300mm is
    >even realistic, maybe I should only get a xx-200mm zoom?
    >
    >Amazon is currently offering a Sigma 70-300 F/4-5.6 (which I gather is the
    >same as a Quantaray) for $120, so right at the moment I'm leaning in that
    >direction....
    >
    >Thanks,
    >


    Even a 200mm hand held is tough. I am from the N* camp, but thes
    comments are universal. In the Nikon world I own a 70-300 lightweigh
    3.5/4.5 Zoom. Its nice when I don't want the weight. But is slow and excep
    at the full 300 zoom, sharp with decent contrast. I also own a 80-20
    F2.8. Expensive, but quick fast and razor sharp. I would not think o
    using the 80/200 without a sturdy (ie. expensive) tripod. Any camer
    movement would mask the quality of the lens. Monopods don't help much.
    A decent one is still expensive and still not very stable. If you onl
    have a limited budget then everything is a compromise. I would go wit
    the Canon lens, and be satisfied. I would save your bucks, and get
    decent Manfrotto triopd when you can afford it. Pass on any camer
    support sold at chain stores.. better you learn to hold the camera stable
    these inexpensive pieces of junk will lull you into a false sense o
    security.
    I guess you will just have to bowl over the wife with some awesom
    photos.. so she understands. I just buy my stuff and make sure there is
    really nice necklace in the Christmas wrapper.. makes all th
    difference.

    Ji





    --
    Ji
    jimn, Apr 11, 2006
    #5
  6. Dennis McCrohan

    cjcampbell Guest

    Dennis McCrohan wrote:
    ><snip>
    > I've done a little bit of googling, and it appears that not everyone who has
    > bought a Canon EF 70-300 has been terribly happy with it. I've seen some
    > comments alluding to the fact that it may not be usable above 200mm, even
    > with a tripod.
    >
    > So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    > inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare

    <snip>

    With lenses, just like everything else, you tend to get what you pay
    for. That does not mean a cheap lens is unusable. It does mean that it
    is just not going to be as sharp when you blow the picture up large as
    a better lens, or it will have more distortion, or it will not be as
    fast, etc.

    I would not worry too much about what people may say about a lens on
    Google. The Internet is full of 'experts' who do not take very many
    pictures but who seem to have all the time in the world to look for
    tiny imperfections in camera equipment. When I was doing triathlon, we
    used to say that there are gearheads, and there are people who ride. It
    is the same in photography. Take pictures, and let others worry about
    what gear you are using. In fact, I would be taking pictures right now
    if I was not stuck in the office.

    That said, sometimes you will need some capability not provided by your
    current gear. Fine. Go wherever your artistic muse leads you. If you
    are really worried about the 70-300mm lens, try one. Take pictures with
    it and see what it does. If you hate it, don't buy it.
    cjcampbell, Apr 11, 2006
    #6
  7. Dennis McCrohan

    Don Stauffer Guest

    We bought the Tamron 28-300, and are very pleased with it. We've had
    several Tamrons in the past. Only thing I don't like about the 28-300
    is that the zoom mechanism is very free/loose. It does have a zoom lock,
    but it is a pain to have to relock it constantly as you adjust zoom. If
    you tilt camera down without the zoom locked, the lens extends!

    In addition to mfgs, even within the same mfg some lenses are better
    than others, so it is a hard job picking really topnotch lenses, but the
    major brands are generally satisfactory unless you have umpteen Mp, or
    are shooting plus-X in dilute developer.


    Dennis McCrohan wrote:
    > Hi-
    >
    > We finally made the step up from a digital point-n-shoot to a Canon Digital
    > Rebel this weekend. This first upgrade that we clearly need is a telephoto
    > lense in the 70-200 or 70-300 range. It appears that Canon, Tamron, and
    > Quantaray all sell 70-300mm telephoto, non-IS lenses for around $150 retail.
    > I've done a little bit of googling, and it appears that not everyone who has
    > bought a Canon EF 70-300 has been terribly happy with it. I've seen some
    > comments alluding to the fact that it may not be usable above 200mm, even
    > with a tripod.
    >
    > So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    > inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and whether
    > any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly amateur
    > picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense will be able
    > to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing sports outdoors. For
    > this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a tripod.
    >
    > Thanks,
    >
    > -dm
    >
    >
    Don Stauffer, Apr 11, 2006
    #7
  8. "Dennis McCrohan" <> wrote:
    >So I'm interested in whether anyone can offer any opinions on how the
    >inexpensive telephoto lenses from these manuafacturers compare, and whether
    >any one is noticably better than the other. We are strictly amateur
    >picture-takers - may main interest in having a telephoto lense will be able
    >to take moderatly long-distant pics of my kids playing sports outdoors. For
    >this, I will generally use a mono-pole intead of a tripod.


    So far I've only seen one response mention a tripod. Get one.
    The sturdier the better. Unfortunately a lightweight tripod
    that is sturdy is going to cost more than the lenses you are
    looking at. You might consider something that isn't so light if
    it is possible. E.g., old 17 pound Majestic tripods are
    inexpensive and stable as a rock. You can put an inexpensive
    ball head on top of one and have a very versatile platform that
    can only be beat with significantly more expensive equipment.

    When you shop for lenses, since your subjects are 1) children,
    and 2) sports, you will find auto-focus to be indispensible.
    Some lenses are faster, less noisy, and more accurate than
    others. Make that one parameter to evaluate with any lense you
    are considering.

    --
    Floyd L. Davidson <http://www.apaflo.com/floyd_davidson>
    Ukpeagvik (Barrow, Alaska)
    Floyd L. Davidson, Apr 11, 2006
    #8
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