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rundll
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I've got around £500-£600 to spend on a replacement for my aging Canon 18-55 kit lens. Is there any reason why I shouldn't buy a Sigma 17-50 f2.8 EX DC OS HSM? It'll complement the nifty fifty and 70-300 (AF) I've got already.

I also fancy something a bit wider for landscapes and the odd building, any thoughts? The Sigma 10-20 f3.5 EX DC HSM?

Is it worthwhile spending more on the Canon equivalents in either case?

I had the Nikon mount version of the non-stabilised 17-50mm f/2.8 (Sigma), and I was happy with it. A bit soft wide open but pretty good for the most part! I'm guessing the optics have been changed for the new OS version, but I've never had any issues with Sigma lenses.

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The problem with the 17-55 2.8 is that it's not an L, so if you ever want to go FF in the future your kind of screwed...i didn't think this would matter btu as i'm looking to get a 5mk2 at some point I've got a slight issue in so much that only on of my len's will fit on the thing....

Actually thinking about it. Maybe you could sell your current gear, lump all the cash together and go full frame? Just a thought like.

5d mk11 can be had here for about £1300

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I keep my XZ-1 in a LowePro Tasca 30, a little neoprene sleeve with a magnetic closure. Not dust sealed, but it protects my camera from knocks while it's in my manbag. As compact a solution as you can get, as far as I know. Cost less than a tenner, too. Much bag discussion here.

Picked up the 9-18mm yesterday and the 75-300mm today. Both are amazingly small for what they are, particularly the 9-18mm.

That said, I've barely had a chance to use the E-P3, as I've been flat out skilling up for my new job. But this weekend I'm planning Botanic Gardens on Saturday and the Zoo on Sunday to test the long 'un.

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Depends if you only ever want to carry about one lens though. Did you look into the Canon 17-55 2.8?

That's what I'd get to replace the 18-55, we rented one last weekend for the GF and I was very impressed with it. It won't fit a full frame EF mount camera but it was never supposed to. As long as you're prepared to sell it should you go full frame, there's no problem. It's not like lenses don't hold their value extremely well if you take care of them.

Actually thinking about it. Maybe you could sell your current gear, lump all the cash together and go full frame? Just a thought like.

5d mk11 can be had here for about £1300

He'd need to buy a lens as well :)

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I had the Sigma 12-24mm and loved it. Although sometimes found it too wide!

Interesting, cheers.

I'd be tempted to go with the sigma soong mentioned or better still a canon 10-22 which is meant to be amazing.

Depends if you only ever want to carry about one lens though. Did you look into the Canon 17-55 2.8?

Yes, I did. I was wondering if it was worth the extra over the Sigma.

Which 18-55 do you have? The EFS IS one? I really like mine, just needs some good light, which is why the 17-55 2.8 appeals to me.

The REALLY old non-IS one.

I'm out off buying into the EFS lenses though in case I update to full-frame, which I really want to at some point.

The problem with the 17-55 2.8 is that it's not an L, so if you ever want to go FF in the future your kind of screwed...i didn't think this would matter btu as i'm looking to get a 5mk2 at some point I've got a slight issue in so much that only on of my len's will fit on the thing....

I've been pondering the FF question myself but the higher burst and better AF of the 7D over the 5DmkII is more important than FF to me, I think.

I had the Nikon mount version of the non-stabilised 17-50mm f/2.8 (Sigma), and I was happy with it. A bit soft wide open but pretty good for the most part! I'm guessing the optics have been changed for the new OS version, but I've never had any issues with Sigma lenses.

Great, thanks for the comments.

Actually thinking about it. Maybe you could sell your current gear, lump all the cash together and go full frame? Just a thought like.

5d mk11 can be had here for about £1300

If that is directed at me, see my FF thoughts above and I also like the idea of two bodies.

That's what I'd get to replace the 18-55, we rented one last weekend for the GF and I was very impressed with it. It won't fit a full frame EF mount camera but it was never supposed to. As long as you're prepared to sell it should you go full frame, there's no problem. It's not like lenses don't hold their value extremely well if you take care of them.

You mean the Sigma 15-50mm f/2.8? Selling stuff isn't a problem, although I tend to just filter old kit it down to friends/family really.

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You mean the Sigma 15-50mm f/2.8?

I think he was referencing the 17-55

Nice review of the 10-22 here.

That's what I'd throw my money on.

That + the 50mm you already own would cover all the ranges nicely for you.

And if you got some cash over and don't already own a polarizing filter and ND would be a good buy.

And you're more likely to use the 50mm 1.8 more rather than leave it at home in place of the zoom...In fact thinking about it I now wonder how much I could get for my 18-55 IS, wouldn't mind doing the same thing myself.

* After a quick ebay browse the 18-55 IS seem to be going for £75-85 brand new. I guess people offloading kit lenses. Just get one of those maybe, much better the non IS version.

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Personally I think the Sigma 12-24mm is a bit shit. The best thing about it is that I made a profit on it after owning it for 12 months, which was nice. I replaced it with this rather obscure one, which I do love but it's got a list of reasons I shouldn't love it. Manual focus, manual aperture control, no details in the EXIF. And worst of all, lots of distortion. But since it was £200 (with it in mind I'm using it on a FF camera, which makes 14mm very wide) I'd not consider anything else:

http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/532-samyang14f28eosff

kit.jpg

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The distortion pattern is really, really difficult to correct. Dead easy to improve, basically impossible to fix. But I don't really care to be honest, even with zero distortion the pictures aren't "right" - they look too wide to really make sense of.

Oh, and I didn't mention the best bit - the centre is insanely sharp. For the centre, say, 10% I think it's probably the sharpest lens I own. Preposterously good.

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I can understand a zoom lens with a weird distortion pattern being hard to correct, because you'd have to allow for it being different at various focal lengths. A prime though? Surely someone must've figure out how to correct that almost perfectly, given that the distortion characteristic will always be exactly the same, pixel for pixel? My guess is if you're using a RAW converter like lightroom or aperture, and it has correction data for the lens, it would sort it out just fine. It would be a difficult job to do yourself in photoshop, but I don't think anyone does that anymore these days.

I didn't realise it had such a large aperture, just clicked through to that review, f/2.8! That's really quite a lot of glass for not a lot of money.

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I've tried a couple of Lightroom profiles for it, neither came close and the best I've managed is no better. There is a map of it in that review I posted:

http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/532-samyang14f28eosff?start=1

It's just a weird pattern - it's not actually the corners where it is worst for a start, it's not symmetrical. Etc.

Better to just forget about it really!

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Got the 45mm , therefore test images! Food and a cat. Sorry, nothing more interesting about. Spoilered for those who don't really care;

p104003620111015at11214.jpg

p104004220111015at11345.jpg

p104005420111015at12415.jpg

p104008420111015at13455.jpg

Impressed so far. Never had a lens that's this 'long' before, playing with DOF is very fun. I still think my 20mm is going to spend the majority of the time mounted, but it's an really nice option to have. Looks wonderful on my black GF1... well I guess that's not important but still it's a very cute combo.

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I'm sure there used to be a photography help thread, but I can't find it.

So if you will indulge me I have a question.

I want to take some pictures of buildings in London. But I keep getting shots with really blue sky and really dark buildings. I think this is a metering exposure issue from pointing the camera at a big bright sky.

Does anyone have any tips? What metering mode should I be in? Would overexposing be any use then dialling it back by tweaking the raw file?

I'm a bit stuck.

Cheers.

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It depends what you want. Unless there's a lot of light directly on the building (i.e the sun) you're goign to either get a a dark building and great skies, or blown out skies and a great building. Using a fiter will help but it might be difficult if it's not a fairly straight line .

I'd expose for the buildings, you've got several metering modes (i guess)

Multi - takes a reading of the whole frame and averages it out

Spot - Takes a reading from the centre spot

Centre - A wider version of spot

So I'd probably spot meter on the building and then speed the exposure up a couple of notches, so that then you can brighten up the building slightly and darken the sky slightly (a happy medium).

Use your histogram and watch for blow highlights. It's far easier to make darker stuff brighter than it is to make brighter stuff darker.

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I'm not one to suggest HDR usually, but bracketing is probably the only reasonable answer. Take one under-exposed to sort the sky, a normally exposed one for comparisons sake, and an over-exposed one to sort the buildings.

Either that or get a fill light, but if you're photographing skyscrapers that might be a relatively difficult process...

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I was going to suggest HDR too - although I've never really gotten great results myself, but there are plenty of others out there who have.

Another idea could be to compose away the sky, and just fill the frame with the buildings? - unless the sky looks especially interesting of course...

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It's got to be said, I'm not massively impressed and it makes me wonder if the 5D and 7D ranges are also going to be merged into one range with a crop sensor. Maybe 1.3x rather than 1.6x? If so I couldn't see me upgrading from the 5D2. Which financially would be quite awesome I guess.

There is quite a lot of inferrence in that, but it seems reasonable.

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The 5D range could go for full frame + resolution? So 30MP in the MkIII? Whilst a 7D Mkii could simply aim to be the highest quality Canon APS-C. There's a market for both.

Admittedly the gap between the 1D and 1Ds was smaller than the 7D and 5D...but it's a comparable difference. The new Canon is being marketed as "the filmmakers DSLR" and I tend to think that means full-frame and I think it undermines that having another full-frame one unless they purposefully hampered the 5D3.

There probably is a market for both, but I think the sort of people who go for a 5D2 when pushed into a choice to take a step-down or a step-up the range would probably go up. Which is free money for Canon.

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...

This has had some tweakage in Aperture but still isnt right..

Maybe crop out the left crane? I'm not familiar with Aperture, but if you can do a gradient filter to darken the upper part of the sky a bit, that might help make it a bit more dramatic if that's what you're looking for...
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