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Usman M. Bajwa
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/11/2006
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Lens selection


Hi Guys, I am looking for expert / professional advice and that's exactly why I am posting my question here as I see there are a lot of really talented people who know what they are doing....

I am a beginner at photography, need your advice on the following:

What is the difference (pros and cons) between buying a single lens with more range or to buy a combination of 2 or 3 lenses with shorter focal length ranges but giving the same overall range capability. I might not be making sense, I will put it in another way:

Lets say I have 2 options to buy the lens range from 28-300mm:

1. Buy a single lens with 28-300mm capability, OR

2. Buy two lenses of say 28-75 mm and another as 70-300mm.

Which one should I go for? what are the pros and cons of each option?

Looking forward to your comments.

Thanks in advance.

Usman


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8/11/2008 1:09:31 AM

 
Jon Close
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/18/2000
  Very generally, without knowing which particular lenses you are considering, the 28-300 is going to be very convenient with "good enough" image quality. Going with 2 or more lenses to cover that range you can get marginally better image quality and wider maximum apertures, but at greater expense, weight, and lens swapping inconvenience.


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8/11/2008 5:41:45 AM

 
Usman M. Bajwa
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/11/2006
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  Thanks Jon. The lens I am considering are actually Zuiko 14-42 mm and ZUIKO 40-150 with another option of buying just a single Zuiko 18-180mm. This will be for Olympus e-510 10 MP DSLR.


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8/11/2008 9:37:43 AM

 
John G. Clifford Jr
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/18/2005
  How serious are you about your photography?

The 14-42 is a 'kit' lens that is good, but not great, in terms of image quality. The same is true of the 40-150.

If it were me, and I wanted to stick with Olympus lenses (very good lenses), I'd buy the Zuiko ED 14-35/2 and the 35-100/2 lenses. More expensive, yes, but you WILL be able to tell the difference.

Or, you could buy the Sigma 18-50/2.8 EX and 50-150/2.8 EX lenses, and again you'd have excellent lenses. I own these two lenses (and many others), so you can look at my gallery for some sample images. Again, not cheap, but EXCELLENT lenses and you can definitely see the difference.

I'm a big believer in buying good lenses.


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8/11/2008 11:04:19 PM

 
Usman M. Bajwa
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/11/2006
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  John, I am new to SLR photography and that too with a limited budget. Not able to afford expensive lenses right away. But I take your point. However, please advise if one lens with long range is worth two with shorter ranges. Thanks


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8/12/2008 12:25:37 AM

 
John G. Clifford Jr
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/18/2005
  Well, you're facing the general problem of, "Do I buy something I don't want now, because I can afford it, or do I wait and buy what I do want later?"

I can tell you from personal experience that buying something you don't want, and then eventually buying what you do want, costs a lot more than just buying what you want.

I can also tell you that ultra-wide range zooms are always inferior in image quality to equivalent-quality lenses with a restricted zoom range, because there are always tradeoffs. I'm not a fan of the 18-200 or 28-300 lenses, because they really don't give a good image at any focal length.

One high quality lens is ALWAYS a better investment than two cheaper lenses... especially when you'll buy the better lens later. If I were you, I'd buy one lens now. My choice would be the Sigma 18-50/2.8 EX, a fantastically sharp lens, and equivalent to a 36-100/2.8 on a 35mm SLR in terms of field of view. This is the lens you will use for 90% of your photography, so make it a good one.


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8/12/2008 2:32:21 PM

 
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