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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old July 27th, 2011, 09:23 PM   #1
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60D lens for live performance

I need a lens with the following requirements for documenting dance performances with 60D and ML:

1. constant aperture
2. good zoom range (like 18-70 or better)
3. smooth focus ring
4. fast if possible (2.8 or better)

Is there a manual lens (cheap) like this? If not, any Canon lenses?

Thanks in advance...
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Old July 28th, 2011, 12:55 PM   #2
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

How close will you be to the action? I assume you're gonna want something capable of both WIDE and MEDIUM/CLOSE-UP? Lenses with 2.8 aperture or faster will cost you, especially if they cover a wide array of focal lengths; you might want to look at some non-Canon brands (Sigma, Tamron, Tokina). Any faster, and you'll likely be looking at prime lenses, which won't do you any good unless you have multiple cameras.

Canon (and non-Canon brands) have inexpensive lenses that cover an array of focal lengths (18-135mm comes to mind), however you sacrifice f-stops (f3.5 max, a lot of the time). If you're shooting indoors in low-light conditions or outside at night, you might have issues.

Sorry, not being much help. Do a search online for the non-Canon brands and see what you can find. You're likely looking at a $400-$600 range.
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Old July 28th, 2011, 01:15 PM   #3
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

it's either Canon 17-55mm f2.8, 24-70mm f 2,8 or Tamron 28-105mm f 2,8, zooms faster than f:2.8 cost a bit more :)
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Old July 28th, 2011, 04:48 PM   #4
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

Maybe a 24-70 f/2.8 is what you are looking for? There is a Canon L version as well as a Sigma version. The Canon version is one of the most popular lenses and one which pretty much every working photographer owns (along with the 70-200), but the Sigma version is available for half the price.

When engineering lenses for DSLR's there are a few general limitations:

1. f/2.8 is the fastest aperture you'll find in a zoom lens
2. An f/2.8 lens is generally limited to about a 3x zoom range (eg 17-50, 24-70, 70-200, 50-150, etc).

There are exceptions to these rules amongst cinema lenses, but in the DSLR world this is pretty much the limit without compromising either quality, size, or price.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 09:59 PM   #5
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

Thanks for the replies. Do all the lenses mentioned have smooth focus and zoom rings? I will need to zoom in and out while recording.

What about vintage manual lenses from Nikon or others - much cheaper - (with adopter) that are of good quality and have qualities I'm looking for. Any suggestions?
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Old July 30th, 2011, 06:39 PM   #6
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

I don't think any still photography lens has a sufficiently smooth ring to be able to rely upon it for consistantly smooth zooms. Part of the problem lies in the fact that the lenses do not zoom at a constant speed, even when the ring is turned at a constant speed. There are sudden parts where the zoom might speed up or slow down, so maintaining a steady hand and perfectly controlled rotation, it still won't zoom smoothly.

If I zoom mid-shot on my DSLR's I always edit out the zoom in post. If this is not possible for you, then I think DSLR's are probably not the right tool for the job.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 02:48 AM   #7
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Re: 60D lens for live performance

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Wiley View Post
1. f/2.8 is the fastest aperture you'll find in a zoom lens
for any DSLR. There are a couple of Olympus F/2 zooms for Micro Four Thirds cameras e.g. GH2. The 35-100mm (70-200mm full frame equivalent) & the 14-35mm (28-70mm full frame equivalent).
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