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02-20-2009, 03:45 PM   #31
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The kit lens may be inexpensive but that doesn't mean it's cheap or of poor quality. More expensive lenses are usually made of better materials and can take a beating and keep on ticking. One of the things that can make more expensive glass better is more glass, as in more and different kinds of elements to control CA, flare, distortion, and provide better contrast, color, and edge to edge sharpness. Better lenses can also have a better 'feel' when zooming and focusing which many folks like and are willing to spend more for. So, well cared for used 'good glass' is a great way to accumulate the good stuff.

02-20-2009, 06:23 PM   #32
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Most of you guys are pixel peeping freaks.

Expensive glass is NOT required to take terrific pictures for a typical user. If you use the kit lens sweet spot at 35mm and keep the aperture in the 5.6 range or higher, that lens is capable of great results.

Even if you still want to upgrade the glass, you can spend very little and get some outstanding quality optics.

- Example; Vivitar 28mm primes if you keep away from the Korean made junk. Both auto and manual aperture have proven to be wonderful. Prices under $100 for an excellent sample.
- Example; Pentax A series fast 50s. F or FA series as well if you want auto focus. FA 1.4 can still be had new for under $200.
- Example; the 28-105 PZ. Price under $100 for a very good sample. A bit heavy some will say, but how freakishly girly are your arms that you can't carry a couple extra grams of weight? If that's the case, spend a few extra dollars and get the auto focus IF version that is still plentiful. Very good lenses all.

Want better lenses than that? Still thousands of old screw mount Takumars that can be had for a song - most of those are great and will teach a hobbyist how to use an SLR manually. Next thing you know you've got a real photographer on your hands.

Can't be bothered with manual settings & hunting down 30+ year old glass? Want a newer lens built for digital lens? Sigma 17-70 is a terrific upgrade to the kit lens for about $300 bones.

If you're a pro, you should have good lenses and you'll know why. The typical hobbyist can get buy without spending butt-loads of cash, thank you very much.
02-20-2009, 06:49 PM   #33
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Good glass doesn't have to = high prices.

The first and main quality is: does it allow you to make good photos.

The fact that some lenses are capable of more does NOT mean you can't make an excellent photo with ANY lens, just about.

Most upgrades are the result of marketing, peer pressure, and anxiety. And they are sideways moves all too often. One set of compromises for another.

That said, having seen for myself, better optical performance does have benefit. But is it a necessary condition for artistic excellence... nah, not really. For me the main benefit is that I have a tiny bit of understanding of which lens will do what for me... if it were my livelihood, I'd be even more conscious of this.
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