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DSLR/Walk around lens
I am a beginner to DSLR looking to get serious (not professional) as a hobby. I will mainly take my camera with me when I go traveling and my preference is for traveling light. Hence, I am looking into getting a general purpose lens. I am aware that it is not that great for IQ as some lenses but I think that it should be sufficient for my purposes..

I was pretty amazed by the reviews of the EOS 40D but it seems a bit bulky to me and also a little too expensive given my budget. Canon and Nikon both seem like great brands to me and it would be great if the pros on this forum could point me to the differences between the two (besides ergonomics) and do some compare and contrast please?.

As for lenses, I have considered many different ones. For my purposes it seems to me that I would need all of wide angle/normal/telephoto. Due to reasons described in the first paragraph, I am thinking of getting an 18-200mm with image stabilization. (night shots are important to me too) I am also thinking of getting a 50mm prime lens for general use. I understand that these are a lot quicker, and would work well in low light settings. Hand-held, does image stabilization or prime lens work better in low light settings> Does anyone know? I tried googling but could not come up with anything..

Below I have a few options in mind. If you had to choose 1, which would you choose?.

Thanks in advance!.

1. Rebel XSi + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $450 = $1100.

2. Nikon D40 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $450 + $450 = $900(with Nikkor 18-55mm).

3. Nikon D60 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $450 = $1100(with Nikkor 18-55mm VR).

4. Nikon D40 + Nikkor 18-200mm VR lenses - $450 + $650 = $1100(with Nikkor 18-55mm).

5. Nikon D60 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $650 = $1300(with Nikkor 18-55mm VR)..

Comments (16)

I'd pick #4..

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Comment #1

I traveled with a Pentax and a Sigma 17-70. The wide angle is usually more important and I did not miss a longer telephoto. For a new package, I would take:.

K200D (body) $630 + Pentax DA17-70/4 $530 = $1160.

Or.

K200D (body) $630 + Sigma 17-70 $330 = $960.

The body has stabilization and either lens will eat a tourist zoom for a small snack. The DA1770 looks to be a bit better than the great Sigma..

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Comment #2

I would probably choose the Nikon D-60 with the 18-55mm VR and add a 70-300mm VR for around $480.00, my thoughts being that there's only a 15mm gap between the two and you get an extra 100mm on the long end. It's only my personal opinion, so take it for what it's worth..

Good luck!Jan M..

Comment #3

I have just purchased the XSi. Wonderfull camera, but I went for the 18-55 IS and the 55-250 IS. Must say that the newly announced Tamron 15x zoom sounds promising as a walk-around lens. But I guess you don;t want to wait for that (I know I couldn't)..

Other option could be (don;t want to make it harder for you) a Sony a200 or a300 with the Tamron 18-250 would be a wonderfull solution also. The a300 has a wonderfull Liveview system, when you use it under cloudy conditions. In bright light it's useless, but that goes with most liveviews (Canon, Olympus)..

Well, good luck choosing!.

ErwinDon't blame me for just getting started....

Sony H2Canon 450D 18-55 IS & 55-250 IS.

My Pbase is finally online:http://www.pbase.com/ed197907/..

Comment #4

Need to add olympus to your list and consider the 14-54mm or even better the 12-60 on a e510/e520 body... well worth the time and effort to look into and you might be surprised....

Can also add the 18-180 oly lens to that list as well....

Good luck..

Comment #5

Lots of choices and all meaningless until you have picked the cameras up.Go into a large camera store and get them to show you some cameras.Pick one that feels balanced in your hands and has controls that feel comfortable to your thumb and fingers.Check out the menus.Are they intuitive to you ? .

Having picked your body you can then move on to lensesthe expensive bit ! Walkabout/travel lenses are a great starting point.The Sigma 18-200mm OS is good as is the Tamron 18-250mm either will be great.If you dont need the reach then the Sigma 18-70mm is an absolute gem and will cover 95% of most needs..

If you need to shoot low light / dim interiors then a prime lens in the 35- 50mm range is a good starting point.Canon make an astonishing 50mm f/1.8 that is as cheap as chips..

Bottom line handle some camerastry all the major makersthey are all good and have masses of fans on this site that could convince you that each is the best.Pick the one you feel most comfortable withthats the one for you.PJT..

Comment #6

Like BA baracus, I would go for option 4 of the ones you've listed. The reason is becuase the Nikkor 18-200mm is a better quality lens than the Sigma version. In terms of image quality, the lens is always more important than the camera body and if funds are limited it is always worth paying more for a good lens. Whichever camera body you buy, it's likely you will upgrade it at some future date but if you buy a good lens, you'll be using it for much longer..

Good quality primes are a joy to use and will give better image quality than most zooms. For night scenes, a fast prime would likely produce better results than your zoom becuase becuase (a) it's faster (wider aperature) (b) the image quality is likely to be better anyway and (c) there is less riak of camera shake with a 50mm prime and so IS isn't so important - but against that:.

(i) once you're use to the freedom of a zoom, I find primes very limiting and question whether you will actually bother to use it.

(ii) if you buy a good zoom such as the Nikkor you'll find the IQ perectly acceptable.

(ii) EITHER lens will need supporting if you want to take succesful night shots and so in reality, I think you'd find the zoom more versatile..

Confused of Malvern'The greatest fool can ask more than the wisest man can answer'..

Comment #7

I'm attacking this topic now on my blog. Part one is finished and I think it will explain things better in layman's terms for you..

Blog.chaselliott.com.

Chas Elliott Photographyhttp://www.chaselliott.com..

Comment #8

I just posted an article today on this very topic. Feedback welcome..

Blog.chaselliott.com.

Chas Elliott Photographyhttp://www.chaselliott.com..

Comment #9

Personally, I disagree.I have traveled several weeks this year with a 17-70 and a 16FE. This gave me 18-105mm in 35mm film terms. That has been plenty of range. The trouble has not been getting enough on the long end but having enough on the wide end..

A 10-15X tourist zoom may give a sense of security because of it's range but they do not go wide enough and you give up on optical quality. IMHO, Lenses like the Sigma 17-70 are the real tourist zooms. They get close to prime quality stopped down, give a tad more width and you will not be afraid to print them large when you get home..

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Comment #10

Agree, absolutely try out each camera and see which one has easy access to features you like. Some are easy to access anf some are a maze of menus and button pushing...

Comment #11

I purchased a nikon 50mm f1.4 prime lens. Its great! In low lite conditions it is superb! The pro's always snatch up all the prime len's. Zoom's can be really good..

But their is nothing like a prime, they take the premier images! This lens is greatfor portraits, and general at home family photo's. You can get one from Adoramacamera for about $300. Take all your shot's in RAW format.General walkaround lens- Nikon 18-200mm. Its all you will need!Consider in the future- Tokina 12-24mm wide angle, it's so good.GOOD LUCK!..

Comment #12

For travelling light - Nikon D60 (40x if you can find one) plus Niikon 18-135mm lens. No VR but very light and inexpensive. Maybe you should also look at the D80 plus 18-135mm? Gives you more room to grow. You can add a 55-200 VR to either package for very little. Better still wait a while and get a 70-300 VR..

The 18-135 will do 99% of what you need. A small amount of cropping will give you the same field of view as a 200mm and there are plenty enough pixels for that on a D60 or D80. Read the reviews on it:.

Http://www.photozone.de/...f-s-18-135mm-f35-56-g-if-ed-dx-reviewtest-report.

Http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/993/cat/13.

But you must go and try them out. You cannot simply buy a DSLR off an internet page..

Hope that helps..

P.S. I would not touch the Sigma lens. It is reviewed here on a Canon body:.

Http://www.photozone.de/...af-18-200mm-f35-63-dc-os-canon-test-reportreview.

Http://www.slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1007/cat/31.

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #13

Jflws wrote:.

I am a beginner to DSLR looking to get serious (not professional) asa hobby. I will mainly take my camera with me when I go travelingand my preference is for traveling light. Hence, I am looking intogetting a general purpose lens. I am aware that it is not that greatfor IQ as some lenses but I think that it should be sufficient for mypurposes..

I was pretty amazed by the reviews of the EOS 40D but it seems a bitbulky to me and also a little too expensive given my budget. Canonand Nikon both seem like great brands to me and it would be great ifthe pros on this forum could point me to the differences between thetwo (besides ergonomics) and do some compare and contrast please?.

As for lenses, I have considered many different ones. For mypurposes it seems to me that I would need all of wideangle/normal/telephoto. Due to reasons described in the firstparagraph, I am thinking of getting an 18-200mm with imagestabilization. (night shots are important to me too) I am alsothinking of getting a 50mm prime lens for general use. I understandthat these are a lot quicker, and would work well in low lightsettings. Hand-held, does image stabilization or prime lens workbetter in low light settings> Does anyone know? I tried googlingbut could not come up with anything..

Below I have a few options in mind. If you had to choose 1, whichwould you choose?.

Thanks in advance!.

1. Rebel XSi + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $450 = $1100.

2. Nikon D40 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $450 + $450 = $900(with Nikkor 18-55mm).

3. Nikon D60 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $450 = $1100(with Nikkor 18-55mm VR).

4. Nikon D40 + Nikkor 18-200mm VR lenses - $450 + $650 = $1100(with Nikkor 18-55mm).

5. Nikon D60 + Sigma 18-200mm OS lenses - $650 + $650 = $1300(with Nikkor 18-55mm VR).

I have a D50 and use an 18-200 Nikkor VR as a walkaround. For me that lens has been very useful and I like the results..

Of the rest of them, I've used a D40 and found the handling and weight a plus and it seems to give good consistent results for the money. If price is an issue and you want the extra MP might be worth looking for any retailer that still has.

End of run D40X's around. There are a few still in the UK but the USA I have no idea. The Canon and D60 I have not used, nor the Sigma lens.Shay son of Che.

Do androids photograph electronic sheep?..

Comment #14

Below I have a few options in mind. If you had to choose 1, whichwould you choose?.

Pentax K200D (in-body shake reduction and weather seals) with Tamron or Pentax 18-250. The 18-250 is as good or better than the 18-200 lenses.Cost: 600+450=1050..

But there's more to choosing a camera/system than spec-sheet data and price. So, I don't really know what you should buy .

Jens.

'Well, 'Zooming with your feet' is usually a stupid thing as zoom rings are designed for hands.' (Me, 2006)My Homepage: http://www.JensRoesner.de..

Comment #15

Either lens will eat a tourist zoom for a small snack..

Then they might bite off more than they can chew....

Http://www.photozone.de/...cal-if-macro-nikon-lab-test-reportreview?start=1.

Http://www.photozone.de/...mm-f28-45-dc-nikon-reviewlab-test-report?start=1.

Yup, the 17-70 is better, but "small snack"? Considering the 18-250 has 3.5x the reach?.

Jens.

'Well, 'Zooming with your feet' is usually a stupid thing as zoom rings are designed for hands.' (Me, 2006)My Homepage: http://www.JensRoesner.de..

Comment #16

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