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  1. #1
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    need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Hi, I'm new to the forum and to slr's and have a question about lenses. First off, I currently have a point and shoot olympus d-550 and will be upgrading soon to the rebel xt. I am going to get the body only because all the reviews I've read say the kit lense is not very good and I wanted something with more of a zoom. The camera will be used primarily for shooting around the house, inside and out, family functions, vacations, etc. The lense I'm leaning towards right now is the 28-135mm IS USM, but knowing very little about slr's and lenses my main concern is whether 28mm is wide enough for my intended uses. I had also considered the 17-85mm but it is $150-200 more, and more than I want to spend. I will probably get a longer lense in the future but for now I can only afford one.

  2. #2
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    I took a quick look at dpreview, but didn't see your Olympus listed here. I would guess that the 28mm lens on a DSLR isn't as wide as what you're probably getting with your Olympus - which frankly isn't that wide to begin with. Most cameras with numbers close to this have the angle of view equivalent in 35mm film cameras of about 35-38mm focal length lenses. A 28mm lens on a that DSLR is more like a 45mm equivalent. I'm using these numbers for comparison only, if you're not familiar with this concept then look at some other posts here (it's a well discussed topic...).

    I wouldn't worry too much about the kit lens, it should be a good start and will definately be wider than what you've got now. Without too much of an investment in the lens to worry about, you'll get used to what works for you - the kit lens should be a very good general use focal length range.

  3. #3
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    The lense on my olympus says 5.8-16.2mm, I would imagine the sensor is also smaller than the canon, so wouldn't this increase those numbers more so than the canon when compared with full frame 35mm? I have done alot of reading here and elsewhere and I basically understand the conversions to full frame, but having never shot with a dslr I dont know how it would actually look. I had considered just using the kit lense but its not very long and figured I would save the $100 and put it towards a better lense, plus with the current rebates I would save another $180 with buying them both. Here is a link to the specs on my current camera, if that helps any. http://www.olympusamerica.com/cpg_se...sp?id=867&fl=4

  4. #4
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Since the sensor is so small in your Olympus, all it takes is that 5.8-16.2mm zoom to get the equivalent of a 36-100mm lens on a 35mm camera. That sensor will be much smaller than what's used on the Canon DSLR you're looking at. One thing that usually happens with bigger sensors is that higher ISO's are cleaner (less noisy, and noise looks a little like film grain).

    Two things determine the angle of view - the focal length of the lens and the size of the film or image sensor. This is true of p&s digitals, 4x5 large format film cameras - anything. The smaller the film or sensor, the smaller the focal length you need to keep the angle of view equal. Because your Olympus' sensor is so small, the focal length is also very short. A 28-135 on that camera would give you a really narrow angle of view - and 5.8-16.2 would be extremely wide (to the point of being hard to do, optically) on that DSLR!

  5. #5
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Ok, I think I'm understanding you. Basically when comparing to a 35mm camera the difference between the two would be that the 28-135 will give me just a slightly narrower view than I have now, 36mm vs 45mm,but quite a bit longer 100 vs. 216mm. So for the intended uses I have for the camera, at the moment anyway, the 28-135 should give me what I'm looking for? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, I've got alot to learn.

  6. #6
    has-been... another view's Avatar
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    You've got it right. Now the only question is if that 28-135 is wide enough for what you want to do with it, and really only you can answer that. Personally I'm a big fan of wide angle lenses, and my 28-80 just doesn't do it. I'll have to add a 12-24 to get the angle of view I want to get back into (which was the 20mm range with 35mm).

  7. #7
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave954
    Ok, I think I'm understanding you. Basically when comparing to a 35mm camera the difference between the two would be that the 28-135 will give me just a slightly narrower view than I have now, 36mm vs 45mm,but quite a bit longer 100 vs. 216mm. So for the intended uses I have for the camera, at the moment anyway, the 28-135 should give me what I'm looking for? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, I've got alot to learn.

    Like AV said, this really comes down to preference. I've rarely used larger than 135mm on my 10d which has the same size sensor as the rebel. I know others who rarely take off their 100-400!

    So, what are your goals and what do you like to photograph? The maybe we can make a better lens suggestion. If you're not sure yet, a lens like the 17-85 (~28-135 35mm format equivelant) would be a good starting point.

  8. #8
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    I mentioned what I would be photographing in my original post, which would basically be around the house, wife, daughter, pets,etc.along with using it at family functions and vacations. I had considered the 17-85 but it is more than I want to spend, I want to keep the lense at $400 or less. I have done some more research and there is basically only two other choices in my price range, the 18-55 kit lense, which I dont want because from what I've read its not very good, and looking at the specs converted to 35mm, 29-88mm vs. what I have already on my p&s 36-100mm I would be gaining nothing. The other choice being the 24-85mm which is much cheaper, but I would lose the double rebate so in total I would only be saving $38. I realize it is has alot to do with personal preference, but having never shot with an SLR, digital or film, I unfortunatly have no point of reference other than my p&s. I am happy with the pictures it takes, I sure that will change once I've used a good camera, I'm just not happy with its performance, doesnt shoot fast enough, shutter speed not adjustable for taking pics at night,pics are blurry if there is any motion.

  9. #9
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Dave,

    I have the XT 350 and love it. I have several lenses and one is the 28-135IS and I feel it is a good all around lens, I also have the 100-300 which is good tele. I have the standard 18-55 that helps for indoor tight shots. I also have the 65mm 1-5x macro lens for the extreme close shots. I want to get rid of both the 28-135 and the 100-300. For what I will be shooting I will need the 28-300 L IS USM, to afford it I need to sell these and take out a mortgage on my house!

  10. #10
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    I have the 18-55mm kit lens on my DRebel, and it's not a bad lens at all. Sure, when you compare it to a top of the line L series lens, it's not the greatest, but the kit lens still gives you pretty good results. The kit lens is a pretty good all around lens and would work for what you plan on shooting. The only problems I see with it is the max. aperture may be too slow for low light, indoor shots and you are loosing some focal length range over your P&S. The 28-135mm that you're looking at has the same max aperture as the kit lens, but the IS should give you an extra stop or so to help out in low light. From what you have said in your previous posts, I think the 28-135mm IS USM lens meets your needs. If the 28-135mm isn't wide enuf for you, I would go with the kit lens and save up for a longer lens in the future.
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  11. #11
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Thanks for everyones help. I am going to go with the 28-135, but I think I am just going to go with the kit, since after figuring it out, the difference is only $80. That way if I need it for tighter indoor shots I have it.

  12. #12
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave954
    I mentioned what I would be photographing in my original post, which would basically be around the house, wife, daughter, pets,etc. ... looking at the specs converted to 35mm, 29-88mm vs. what I have already on my p&s 36-100mm I would be gaining nothing. ... shutter speed not adjustable for taking pics at night,pics are blurry if there is any motion.
    Couple of things here:

    There are a lot of different ways to photograph any subject. I've seen great environmental portraits shot with the equivalent of a 20mm, and others at 200mm for example. So it's not just what you photograph but also how you photograph it. That's one thing about an SLR - you'll have a lot more options on what you do and how you do it.

    The two other quotes kinda go together. You will be gaining a lot, but not necessarily in focal length in that case. Night shots will have a lot less noise and manual control can give you a ton of creativity options. "Pics are blurry if there is any motion" - this is not due to the camera, but the camera's settings. Slow shutter speeds that you probably would have to use at night will show motion, but a faster lens will give you wider apertures so you might be able to use a faster shutter speed.

  13. #13
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    I know it's not just the what, but the how you take photos, except that is the only way I know of to describe what I want, I couldn't give you a technical explanation, except maybe if you asked a specific question. Right now I'm just p&s just like my camera.

    As far as the blurry pictures go, I think maybe you thought because of the way I worded it I was making a statement about capturing motion at night, but really that was two seperate issues. I guess, now that you mention it, it does have to do with available light though, because with outdoor daytime shots its usually not a problem, but indoors when the flash is needed that shots tend to blur. But your saying its not the camera but its settings, wouldnt that be the same thing? There is no manual adjustment of shutter speed, the only thing you can do is set it for night, and the fastest shutter speed is 1/1,000 of a sec compared to the xt at 1/4,000.

  14. #14
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    Re: need help with lense choice for rebel xt

    In 35mm film cameras, a lens with a focal distance of 50mm is the equivalent of human vision (this is a bit tricky, because we tend to move our eyes to look everything, and barely notice). So, if you have 45mm equivalent, you will run into trouble indoors in birthday parties (for example), where you want to capture a group picture, but can't move farther away to get all the people in the frame.

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