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Esoterra
09-26-2005, 08:56 PM
I have to admit, it can be rather intimidating trying to find the right lens that I will be happy with. I dont want to have buyers remorse. I'm sure you get asked this question all the time, so here it goes. I have $500 budgeted for a lens. I am most concerned about excellent image quality, I am looking for a pro lens that covers around 18-300mm in range and 2.8 fstop. I have read the buying a lens thread listed on this site, and I still feel like I am missing out on something...In your honest opinion, what lens do you recommend? any sugestions would be very much appreciated... if you could link the exact lense to a site that sells ...and thank you in advance. If my criteria is unreasonable...then please tell me what you think is the best lense for $500.

Eso

K1W1
09-27-2005, 03:31 AM
Why don't you buy a camera body first and then rent some lenses to find out what YOU like rather than purchase based on a person who may have entirely different criteria giving you a recommendation.

Kenyada
09-27-2005, 04:05 AM
I have to admit, it can be rather intimidating trying to find the right lens that I will be happy with. I dont want to have buyers remorse. I'm sure you get asked this question all the time, so here it goes. I have $500 budgeted for a lens. I am most concerned about excellent image quality, I am looking for a pro lens that covers around 18-300mm in range and 2.8 fstop. I have read the buying a lens thread listed on this site, and I still feel like I am missing out on something...In your honest opinion, what lens do you recommend? any sugestions would be very much appreciated... if you could link the exact lense to a site that sells ...and thank you in advance. If my criteria is unreasonable...then please tell me what you think is the best lense for $500.

Eso

"Compromise" will be the operative word in your search. A dealer will need to know what kind of images - wildlife, landscapes. etc. If the most imporatnt aspect is "excellent image quality," you may need to compromise on the stats a bit. You've got your budget on one end, and the image quality you need on the other end. In between those parameters, there is plenty of room to tweak stats. A Sigma 18-125mm, for example, is a very good 24/7 lens. Save the left over $100, and later add another $120 to bring home a Sigma 70-300mm Macro. The only possible problem I see in keeping within the $500 budget is the 2.8 f-stop. You may have to be flexible in that area.

nwpoland
09-27-2005, 04:25 AM
I use the Sigma 18-200DC lens with my Nikon D50. It's a great 24/7 lens...for me the quality and price are great.

Here's the link for Amazon.com (they have other companies' prices as well):
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B0007U0GZC/qid=1127816609/sr=8-2/ref=pd_bbs_2/002-4163691-6963220?v=glance&s=photo&n=507846

Something from your post stuck out to me...you mentioned that you want a "pro" lens. What do you mean by that? For $500 you're definitely going to be limited in that department.

Any specific uses you're looking for?

D70FAN
09-27-2005, 07:35 AM
I have to admit, it can be rather intimidating trying to find the right lens that I will be happy with. I dont want to have buyers remorse. I'm sure you get asked this question all the time, so here it goes. I have $500 budgeted for a lens. I am most concerned about excellent image quality, I am looking for a pro lens that covers around 18-300mm in range and 2.8 fstop. I have read the buying a lens thread listed on this site, and I still feel like I am missing out on something...In your honest opinion, what lens do you recommend? any sugestions would be very much appreciated... if you could link the exact lense to a site that sells ...and thank you in advance. If my criteria is unreasonable...then please tell me what you think is the best lense for $500.

Eso

The only f2.8 zooms that I know of in the sub-$500 catagory are the Tamron 28-75 and the Sigmas... 18-50, 20-40, 24-60, and 28-70.

You will not find a single "pro" or consumer grade lens that covers 18-300, but Sigma makes a decent 18-200 for about $400. Most "pro" grade zoom lenses start at $800 and go up quickly from there.

Many here, including me, use a good quality wide-zoom like the Sigma 18-125 or 18-200 as an everyday dawn-to-dusk lens, and fixed focal length lenses for specialty and low light (non-flash) shooting. This allows a good mix without breaking the bank. So your $500 would cover a Sigma 18-200 and a Nikkor 50mm f1.8. Or if you need a lot of reach, maybe the Sigma 18-125 and the Sigma 70-300 APO as Kenyada suggested (around $500 total). None of this is pro equipment but will get you going with good image quality and versatility.

Good pro-grade f2.8 zoom lenses are not cheap. Plan on dropping at least $400 on a third party mid-range zoom and probably closer to $1400 for a pro quality Nikkor (like the 18-55 f2.8, or 28-70 f2.8).

Esoterra
09-27-2005, 08:44 AM
Hey thanks for all the feed back. I think the Sigma 18-125/ 70-300 APO makes sense to me. I didnt realize how expensive a pro lens could be. Does anyone have a link for the Sigma 70-300 APO for Nikon...all I see is canon. Thanks!

Eso

nwpoland
09-27-2005, 11:54 AM
Courtesy of Amazon.com:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B000A7V2DC/qid=1127843542/sr=8-1/ref=pd_bbs_1/103-5772222-8945435?v=glance&s=photo&n=507846

Here's the pricegrabber link for it:
http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_getprod.php/masterid=904093/search=sigma+nikon+70-300

Esoterra
09-27-2005, 06:57 PM
I called up B&H , Adorama, and OneCall... asked them for pricing on Sigma 18-125/ 70-300 APO. They gave me pricing that was competitive, however, they told me that I should go with Nikkor instead because "Sigma is not as good quality... It feels lower quality when you hold it... and they are notorious for falling apart after a year...Nikkor is much sharper than Sigma... " Im sure they were just trying to sell me the lens they had in mind, but I wanted to get some feed back from those of you out there that have used Nikkor and Sigma... what is the WORD!

Thanks,

Eso

BigConig
09-28-2005, 07:40 AM
Sigma makes mostly decent and a few great lenses. The build quality on the 18-125 is a little cheaper than most Nikkors. But it does have very good image quality.

You haven't mentioned what type of shooting you plan on doing. It's fairly important to know what you are going to do before making any decisions.

The best all in one zoom I've used is easily the Nikon 28-200G, but that is definitely lacking on the wide end. The Nikon 18-70 "kit lens" is a very nice lens for the money and readily available used as lots of kit buyers eventually upgrade to pro glass. Another afordable gem is the Nikon 24-85 AF-S. I got one for $200 refurbished and it's a great lens for the money.

If you really want pro quality glass and a mid range zoom is useful to you the Nikkor 35-70 2.8 can be had real cheap second had and is easily one of Nikon's best zooms image-wise.

Esoterra
09-28-2005, 04:02 PM
I will be doing Scenery, Portrait, and Indoor photography

BigConig
09-29-2005, 05:07 AM
I will be doing Scenery, Portrait, and Indoor photography

If it were me I would probably pick up a Nikon 18-70 and either a 50 f/1.8 or an SB600 speed light.

Nikon's iTTL flashes are amazing and they justy recently dropped the price on the 600. Also, at around $100 the 50 1.8 is a killer deal for low light and prtrait stuff.

Just my 2 though.

Spot focus
09-29-2005, 05:10 AM
Hey thanks for all the feed back. I think the Sigma 18-125/ 70-300 APO makes sense to me. I didnt realize how expensive a pro lens could be. Does anyone have a link for the Sigma 70-300 APO for Nikon...all I see is canon. Thanks!

Eso
Try this one Sigma lenses (http://www.sigma-photo.co.jp/english/lens/index.htm) ;)