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  1. #1
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Last year I wrote an inexpensive zoom lens guide for the Holidays. I'm updating it for this year and I wanted to find out what the community here thought should be included. Most of all, I'm looking for things I've missed or that have come out this year.

    So what zoom lenses do you own and love? What zoom lenses do you covet? What do you think should be included in a good top five affordable zoom lens list? Here's last year's article:

    Five Great Zoom Lenses Under $1000 >>

    Looking forward to your replies!
    Photo-John

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  2. #2
    Snap Happy CaraRose's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    The sigma 8-16mm should definitely be on the list. LOL, it's on my rather long list of lenses I want.

    Tokina 12-24mm, still an awesome lens at a great price.
    --Cara

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    Tokina SD 12-24mm F/4 DX

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  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Quote Originally Posted by CaraRose
    The sigma 8-16mm should definitely be on the list. LOL, it's on my rather long list of lenses I want.

    Tokina 12-24mm, still an awesome lens at a great price.
    Yup - I am planning to replace the Sigma 10-20mm on last year's list with the 8-16mm Sigma zoom. The Tokina 12-24mm is also a great lens but the Sigma 8-16mm ruined it for me, I'm afraid
    Photo-John

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  4. #4
    Calanan Photography, LLC calanan's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    On a Nikon DX, the Tokina 12-24mm f/4.
    On a Nikon FX, the Nikkor 24-70 f/2.8 (though even on an FX body the Tokina is no slouch, vignetting is gone above 18mm in full-frame mode!).
    Calanan Photography, LLC
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  5. #5
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    I have the original lens on my canon XS. I want to get a better one for a good price. What would you think? Im looking at under $300. Doesnt have to be professional quality. Just dont have that much to spend on a lens right now.

    Thanks

  6. #6
    Senior Member armando_m's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    my favorite is the tokina 11-16 f2.8 followed by the nikon 18-200

    Quote Originally Posted by Saltfisher
    I have the original lens on my canon XS. I want to get a better one for a good price. What would you think? Im looking at under $300. Doesnt have to be professional quality. Just dont have that much to spend on a lens right now.
    Thanks
    For that price I think your best option would be to get a fast prime lens (not a zoom) like
    28mm f1.8
    35mm f2
    50mm f1.8

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Saltfisher
    I have the original lens on my canon XS. I want to get a better one for a good price. What would you think? Im looking at under $300. Doesnt have to be professional quality. Just dont have that much to spend on a lens right now.
    You should start a new thread for this question so we can give it the attention it deserves. Tell us what kind of stuff you want to shoot, what your budget is (I know you already told us here) and what the kit lens isn't doing well for you. You should also search the Canon forum and see what you can learn from the threads that have already been posted. Make a new post and I promise to reply!
    Photo-John

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  8. #8
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Damn, you said affordable.
    When I bought my first digital SLR, I could afford the Canon EF 24-70 L f/2.8 and the 70-200 L IS f/2.8 but does that make them "affordable"?
    I also bought the EF-S 10-22 when I bought that 20D which is about the only reason I drag that old body out nowadays.

    For ages I wished I had a longer lens, tried the 2x converter (too soft), tried the Sigma 80-400 (IS wandered) and ended up with the Canon 100-400 L IS.

    But sub $1000? I don't think any of my lenses have been that cheap


    Covet is such a nasty word, John.
    But I think I will sell both my EF 70-200 f/2.8 L IS to get one new mkII version of it.
    And trade in the old 1.4x and 2x converters for the new mkIII models.

    If there was in internal zoom 24-70, I'd have it
    Same for the 100-400 range, I don't like the bellows action dust pumps.


    Just to go well off topic though, for the micro 4/3 I want the old 4/3 IS Bigma.
    Shame they don't seem to sell them any more
    PAul

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  9. #9
    Nature/Wildlife Forum Co-Moderator Loupey's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    It's just outside the price point, but my 24-105mm f/4L IS has been my favorite zoom since I got it a couple years ago.

    Great walk-around lens, especially on a full-frame body.
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  10. #10
    Senior Member Anbesol's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    the 28-75 f/2.8 is already on the list. Well, I have the minolta version, but the same thing basically.

    I'd consider putting the Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 on there also, its the perfect replacement for a kit lens for many, and affordable being ~$500.

  11. #11
    Ex-Modster Old Timer's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    The Nikkor 24-120mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR Autofocus Lens came as the kit lens with my D700 two years ago. At first I rarely used it preferring to stick with the Nikkor 28-70 f2.8 as my all around lens. However as time went by I started using it more and more and love how light it is and how well the VR works helping me forget it's an f3.5-5.6 lens. At around $600 it is a steal for full frame shooters.
    Don't forget about the Gallery. Are your photos there??


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  12. #12
    drg
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    I am surprised that the Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L has not been listed!

    This non-IS lens for around $700 is a steal. The last one I purchased (I've had three, one 'disappeared') cost me about $625 with a rebate or promotion of some kind.

    It's much lighter than its big cousin the 70-200mm f/2.8L, easily as sharp or better, and is good for APS or Full Frame usage. Being less bulky, the IS option is not as essential to make a good photograph. There is an Image Stabilized version, over $1000, for those who prefer that and in which case you can make silly hand held exposures like 1/80th of a second at 200mm!!

    High ISO with low noise shooting cameras makes this an all purpose TeleZoom that is easy to carry all day and combined with another lens and/or tele-converter will cover most needs.

    This is one of the first two add on lens models I recommend to Canon purchasers after the kit or included lens regardless of DSLR model.
    CDPrice 'drg'
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  13. #13
    Senior Member Anbesol's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    the 70-200 f/4 L probably isn';t listed because its exclusive to canon. Also probably because the Sigma and Tamron alternatives are about the same price with a 2.8.

    The two I think are worthy of the list were already on it, 28-75 f/2.8 and 17-50 f/2.8...

  14. #14
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anbesol
    the 70-200 f/4 L probably isn';t listed because its exclusive to canon.
    That's right. One of the challenges of this list is that it has to be at least somewhat universal. The updated 2010 list is looking to be more of a list of lists. In other words, each lens will likely include a sublist of altermatives. And yeah, drg, I think the Canon 70-200mm f/4 should be on there.
    Photo-John

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  15. #15
    Member dl4449's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    For me the Nikon 24-40 2.8 is about the only lens I use

  16. #16
    drg
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    For a more universal mount lens how about one of the Sigma 17-70mm with or without OS? A nice general low cost lens for the APS-DSLR crowd that has just bit more range than the 18-50mm often seen as a kit lens.

    Sigma is also good at computing these lenses for Macro or close focusing. The 70mm length on the APS sized sensor cameras makes this lens a casual portrait tool as well.

    What I'm lusting after is a Zeiss Distagon T* f/2.8 21mm that has a 90mm field/angle of view, or the Distagon T* f/2.8 25mm in the ZS mount that being the old M42 thread mount has a very wide ability to be adapted to various bodies now and in the future. Not a zoom, but that's what I want for the arsenal.
    CDPrice 'drg'
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  17. #17
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Updated Lens List Is Live!

    The updated lens list is live!

    Top Five Budget Zoom Lenses >>

    It ended up being a bigger project than I expected. There are so many good lenses and finding options that are somewhat universal makes it that much harder. I expanded it a bit with alternatives and I worked in some of your suggestions. I know it's not going to fit or make everyone happy but I think it's reasonably universal. As I said in the intro of the guide, if you don't like my choices, please add your own in the comments section. User choices in the comments just make the article better
    Photo-John

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  18. #18
    Member Marc2B4's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Olympus 14-54 f2.8. Great lens, razor sharp. Good all around lens to put on a body and leave there going out for a walk or whatever. Don't care for the new Oly SWD lenses, motors in the lenses can break, I'm more of a manual guy anyway. I know, people will slam me and argue with me, just my preference.

    Mark

  19. #19
    Toon Army Foot Soldier straightarm's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    depending on what I'm shooting:

    Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS

    Sigma 120-300 f2.8


    Canon 100-400 IS

    my dream zoom lens would be the Sigma 300-800
    Simon, bombadier 1st class

  20. #20
    Junior Member Danbaileyphoto's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    My bread and butter, favorite zoom lens is my Nikon AF 80-200mm f2.8. It's the only zoom lens I own. It has served me extremely well for many years and I see many more years of use out of it for shooting sports, portraits and, well, just about everything else. It's a hair over $1,000, but well worth it.

    I'd NEVER get rid of my 80-200mm, unless I replaced it with a new one, or the new 70-200mm f2.8 VRII, but that one costs twice as much.
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  21. #21
    Junior Member Danbaileyphoto's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    My bread and butter, favorite zoom lens is my Nikon AF 80-200mm f2.8. It's the only zoom lens I own. It has served me extremely well for many years and I see many more years of use out of it for shooting sports, portraits and, well, just about everything else. It's a hair over $1,000, but well worth it.

    I'd NEVER get rid of my 80-200mm, unless I replaced it with a new one, or the new 70-200mm f2.8 VRII, but that one costs twice as much.
    Daniel H. Bailey's Adventure Photography Blog
    -Exploring the world of outdoor photography with tips, news, imagery and insight.

    Become a Fan for new imagery, exclusive discounts and great outdoor photography content!
    Brand new eBook: Making The Image- A Conceptual Guide for Creating Stronger Photographs.

  22. #22
    Member gryphonslair99's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    16-35 f2.8L II, 24-70 f2.8L & 70-200 f2.8L. All my other glass are primes except for the Tokina 11-16 f2.8 i have for my one crop body.

  23. #23
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    My favourites:
    For Canon 36x24mm: Sigma 12-24mm, the old Canon 28-70mm L.
    For Olympus: 7-14mm, 12-60mm, 50-200mm.
    Superb picture quality and rugged construction (Olympus).

  24. #24
    Senior Member Anbesol's Avatar
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    Re: Your Favorite Zoom Lenses?

    Quote Originally Posted by gryphonslair99
    16-35 f2.8L II, 24-70 f2.8L & 70-200 f2.8L. All my other glass are primes except for the Tokina 11-16 f2.8 i have for my one crop body.
    He said under $1k rrr:

    same to you micha

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