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Thread: Do I buy a camera body only and then get a lens or a full basic kit?

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    Do I buy a camera body only and then get a lens or a full basic kit?

    As the topic suggests. I'm wondering if I should just buy a camera body and look at spending the extra $ on a better 2nd hand lens than the basic lens that comes in the starter kit. I'd hate to spend money on a camera with lens included and be frustrated with it pretty much from the start. Previously ( as in a past single life 30+ years ago I'd only used a zoom lens and a stand lens on my slr) Yes it's been that long.

    I see you get a 15-55 IS lens with the start kits.
    I'm not really sure what I will be using the camera for yet but it will be mostly landscape and sky not portrait and some close up ( nature/garden etc) pics.
    I was originally looking at a 450D but am now leaning towards either the 500D or at a stretch the 550 body.

    What do forum members suggest?
    Last edited by kexkez; 30-01-2011 at 11:19am. Reason: added more info

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    Ausphotography Site Sponsor/Advertiser DAdeGroot's Avatar
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    The new kit lenses aren't that bad really and if you don't know exactly what you'll be doing with the camera, they're a good starting point.

    The 15-55 IS and 15-85 IS kit lenses are worth looking at initially. Note which end of the focal length you use most and which you'd like more of (wider or longer) and base your following lens choices on that.
    Dave

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    Canon EOS 1D MkIV | Canon EOS 5D MkII | Canon EOS 30D | Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM | Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM | Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM | Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM | Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM | Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L & some non-L lenses.

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    maybe if you said what your budget is then most could steer you in the right direction. Personally, I`d (from experience of not doing it again) buy the body and then get a better lens than the kit lens. Dont know much about canon anyway, so hopefully a cannonised subject will advise you..
    Graeme
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    thanx Dave and Graeme. Budget. Oh I wish i had one. Looking grey market for a start. I'm pretty much restricted if I buy now, hence the 2nd hand lens comment. I guess I'm better off buying the basic kit and seeing where it takes me. Or hanging out for a few more months. Very frustrating watching the storm clouds in WA yesterday and wishing for a decent camera. I want to get something before winter is over with. That gives me about 5-6 months max to buy something.

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    I went through this same situation, I brought the 50D at the time, because I wanted a DSLR only, it came with the 17-85mm lens, which I gave to my brother inlaw. He use's it on their 550D and loves it over the standard lenses it came with(purchased new 5 mths ago) It works very well on their 550D. I purchased the Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 for $399.00 brand new in Perth and it is very rarely of it. I shoot my children, land/sea scapes and am extremely happy with it. It's a tough choice, but I would say to get the better glass and the body only, if you are sure on what your main use is. I think the two kit lenses cover 15 odd to 250 odd so they will give you better focal range, but if your never going to shot longer end, do you need it? If your shooting the forrest and the coast around you, you may even just opt for the Sigma 10-20 mm UWA.

    The 17-85mm has been talked about to death on this forum, some love it and some find the IQ poor, yes it has IS, but I found it poor on my 50D. The 15-85mm has been given some great reviews on this forum, but I haven't used it and can't comment.

    Don't sacrifice quality for price, in the end you'll regret it.

    Hope this helps you and good luck with your choice.
    They call me "Blue" it's a red head thing.
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    Thanx Roosta. I think I'm pretty much set on the 550 now. I just needed to convince myself to spend the extra $ without guilt. Trying not to think of all the things I could spend the money on otherwise. (being in a relatively new house there's always loads to be done. I've already talked myself out of buying twice before and spent the money elsewhere. Not this time.) Will go grey import. Just looking around at lens to see what I can find now.

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    One really useful tool I was put onto is a book under the magic lantern series, If you use the link at the top of the forum page "AP Sponsors" you'll find Fishpond, If you search for Magic Lantern Books + 550D Canon, your new purchase will pop up. You can get either a Book by itself, or the Book and DVD, the DVD option allows you to sit infront of your computer or TV and with camera inhand, it walks you through all the nitty gritty in an easy to follow sequence. Mine cost around $32.00 delivered, it was the cheapest site around (Other main American sites and Aussie book stores) also AusPhotography get a commision from fishpond, so where helping our site.

    Another thing to think about is if you look at purchasing a Sigma lens, check this out. http://www.crkennedy.com.au/v1/index...price%20match&

    and http://www.crkennedy.com.au/v1/index...price%20match&

    Have fun.

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    One more thing, being your on the best side of the country, try speaking to Stu Symmonds @ Quality Camera Sales, He's in Mandurah and is also a site sponsor, you can get his details from the Sponsors link atop the forum page. He is a Canon man, great to deal with, get some grey prices and give him a call or an e-mail. He has got all sorts on his webpage.

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    If you are looking for lens that has a reasonable zoom range and is till very good look at the Canon 24 - 105 L. It is a very good lens, I know the argument about price vs quality and I spent several weeks tossing up between the 400D and the 40D. I ended up with the 40D with the 17 -85mm. I used the lens for 2+ years before I offloaded it to get the 24 - 105mm. While it didn't make a huge difference in the price for the 24 - 105mm, I do think it was the right way to go. I got to use the 17 - 85mm for 2+ years, initially my situation was similar, I was in a new house as well with things that needed to be done. Lenses are expensive but if you can make for the interim you can always upgrade at a later date and the sell unused items to make back money. However the lens you have today, is always better than the lens you don't have.

    Hope this helps.
    -Nigel

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    Site Rules Breach - Permanent Ban Tatts's Avatar
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    The price difference between a body only 500d and one that comes with a kit 18-55mm lens is $90. You could always buy it with the kit lens so you would be able to use it as soon as it arrived and then sell it for $50 or maybe a little more. Effectively it would be like a rental lens that would cost $40 for however long it takes to find a 2nd hand lens that you like.

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    G'day kexkez

    If you can drag yourself away from the chain stores & their kit-lens offerings ...
    have a look at Sydney's ryda.com - they offer a number of body + lens offerings as a package

    Regards, Phil
    Of all the stuff in a busy photographers kitbag, the ability to see photographically is the most important
    google me at Travelling School of Photography
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    The Canon twin-lens-kit lenses are the best performing optically of all the major brands. I am only referring to the IS versions, not older ones.

    If you read the reviews on slrgear and photozone you will see how golly good they are. When so many posters say (and they do, they do) that they stepped up from the kit lens and the more expensive, new lens was so much better, they are usually referring to subjective impressions which, sorry to say, are not entirely formed from objective reality - by definition!

    I would say the 550D is a worthwhile stretch of the budget. The twin lens kit adds very little to the body cost.

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    Have a read of these:

    http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...t_and_Software

    http://www.ausphotography.net.au/for...ver_kit_lenses

    Kit lenses are ok but have limits. Work within those limits and you have no issues, but if you need fast glass they won't cut it.
    regards, Kym Gallery Honest & Direct Constructive Critique Appreciated! ©
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    Ausphotography Veteran Speedway's Avatar
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    I went from a film SLR to a DSLR with a similar break and started with a 400D and twin lens kit and used this for nearly 2 years before getting some better glass. I have never regretted this decision as as I progressed the kit glass made me work harder to get the results and when I got better glass I didn't have such a steep learning curve. The newer canon kit lenses are a big improvement over my 18-55 and 75-300 non IS lenses too.
    Keith.
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    For a 550D body vs 550D Body + 18-55mm lens kit, the price different is only $40 AUD. If you don't have any lenses on hand, you should definitely get the kit and you can play around with it once it arrives.

    Also, by buying a brand new Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS already costs AU$174.90. If you are going to get it in the future, it's not worth to buy separately.
    DigitalRev - My photos, my story™


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    Thanks everyone. Just watching some lens at auction on ebay atm which finish in the next few days. Once that's done if I decided not to get them I'll be buying a kit.. Missing yet another brilliant photo opportunity this coming weekend which is very frustrating.

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    kexkez, the latest kit 18-55 IS is supposed to be better than the old ones. I had an earlier one that was not that flash, but I have read later ones are better. It does have limited focal range through. Have you considered buying a more premium kit that comes with the latest 15-85 IS? I know you will pay more, but that lens is a lot more versatile. It gives you a lot wider action at 15mm, plus naturally longer at 85. It is a pretty good sharp lens and gives good IQ once you get your settings sorted and a lot cheaper than the expensive 17-55 premium lens, which offers little gain in focal length, but does give great IQ.
    Lloyd
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    Quote Originally Posted by LJG View Post
    kexkez, the latest kit 18-55 IS is supposed to be better than the old ones. I had an earlier one that was not that flash, but I have read later ones are better. It does have limited focal range through. Have you considered buying a more premium kit that comes with the latest 15-85 IS? I know you will pay more, but that lens is a lot more versatile. It gives you a lot wider action at 15mm, plus naturally longer at 85. It is a pretty good sharp lens and gives good IQ once you get your settings sorted and a lot cheaper than the expensive 17-55 premium lens, which offers little gain in focal length, but does give great IQ.
    LJG I'd love to be buying the bigger lens. 15-85 IS instead of the 18-55 but in order to do so I'd have to not buy a camera at all. Haven't the dollars for it looking at prices on line.
    Almost tempted to go for 500d and maybe get the twin lens kit but honestly I'm guessing I'd be regretting the chance to get the 550d while I can. The citiwide guy is away atm and not taking orders so it seems I might have to hold my horses for a week or 2.
    Last edited by kexkez; 04-02-2011 at 8:57pm.

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    Member David's Avatar
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    Going by the fact that you have had cameras before and have some experience ...mate i would focus on what camera i want and get it on its own. The lenses you get with the kits can be bought second hand cheap after rwards. Experience will tell you the lens is the workhorse, not the body, so I would be more concerned about the quality of the lens options you have inside your budget rather than the body. If you were a newbie who didnt know his apeture from his shutter speed a kit lens/body combo would be ok whilst you learn the basics but i think you are beyond the basics and therefore will get frustrated with the limitations of kit lenses pretty quickly....I would go for an ok body, then ONE good quality lens that does one GENRE well.. for landscapes obviously a non generic would be the Sigma 10 - 20mm wide angle, ....or a Canon 10 -22mm if you can afford a better quality lens. Both very good lenses for landscapes. Good luck with your decisions: the IS Canon lenses they often put with a kit sale are good quality ...but good enough ? That will be your decision.
    Comments and CC welcome..

    Gear: Canon 6D & 1Ds Cameras l Canon EF 17-40mm F 4.0 L USM l Canon EF 24-105mm F4.0 L IS USM l Canon EF 70 - 200 F4.0 L USM Lenses I Manfrotto Tripods I Adobe Photoshop CS6 l Lightroom 3.0 I Lee Filters



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