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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 May 6th, 2014, 12:24 PM   #1
Major Player
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Charleston, WV
Posts: 383
Next Lens Purchase....

What suggestion would you have for me about what my next lens purchase (or I guess purchase in general should be). I plan on getting more into corporate videos (which is my main goal), but currently I do short videos for my church and some photography. I don't do a ton of run and gun, but I do at times. Currently I own…

Canon T3i
Kit lens
50mm 1.8
70-300mm 5.6 (I think that’s what it is)
Tokina 11-16mm
blackbird stabilizer
kenova slider
3 softbox lights
A nice recorder (cant remember the brand)
A good lav mic

I always hear to invest in glass, so my plan was to make my next purchase another lens. If you have any suggestions on which to get, please let me know. If you have any other suggestions of what my next purchase should be instead of a lens, please let me know as well.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 02:01 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 3,420
Re: Next Lens Purchase....

Do you find your kit lens usable for video?

I've been very happy with the EF-S 17-55mm f2.8, as have most crop-sensor owners who've posted about it. The constant aperture of f2.8 is reasonably fast, the range is almost perfect... like your kit lens, but higher quality, and more suited to stills *and* video.

I too like the Tokina 11-16mm you have, and find the 17-55 of equal or better quality and the perfect complement.

If there is a weakness for video work, it is that 55 is not quite long enough for some interview work. Sometimes hard to pull that CU without moving in a bit. But this I have to balance against the excellent performance at the wide end, so handy for all sorts of interiors. A great alternative fl would be the 24-105L f4. But it's slower, and while 24 will cover almost every interview wide, it isn't really wide enough for the interior wides I seem to run into all the time.

With your wide end covered nicely by the Tokina, my advice is to focus more on the commonly used focal lengths... for me personally, that's zooms, not primes, but those more oriented towards cinematography approaches would make different choices.

For coverage in your church, a fast telephoto zoom is great for picking up mediums & CUs at a distance. The 70-300 you have is likely an f4 to f5.6, imo not good for interiors where you need more aperture. May be fine for exteriors, I haven't spent any time with that class of lenses. For interiors, the Canon 70-200mm f2.8 IS II is the king of the hill, with the Sigma 50-150mm f2.8 OS right behind it at much lower cost.

I've decided I'm not shooting enough telephoto interiors, and am selling my Sigma in the classifieds, a great event interiors lens...

My second recc is to figure out what you're shooting most often, and how well your present lensing supports that.

Edit: oops, you didn't list a tripod in your post. Do you have a good one? IMO that comes before any more lenses...
30 years of pro media production. Vegas user since 1.0. Webcaster since 1997. Freelancer since 2000. College instructor since 2001.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 02:45 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Charleston, WV
Posts: 383
Re: Next Lens Purchase....

Absolutely amazing response. Exactly what I was looking for! Thanks!

You are right, the 70-300 is really not that great of a lens. I purcahsed it before I knew anything about photography and got it only to get close ups of people on stage. It's worked fine for that, but it's very slow.

The kit lens I have is OK. I try to avoid using it if I can. I actually dropped it a few months back from about 10 feet or so onto a thinly carpeted floor at the church and now it won't auto focus and I can only get correct focus at about 24-55. (it's an 18-55 and always out of focus below 24mm now). I was actually surprised it survived as well as it did to be honest.

I have considered getting a lens similar to that one with a better quality but just havent yet.

I may have to look into the Sigma 50-150.

In regards to my tripod, I use the one the church has, which I feel like is nice. I don't know the brand, but it doesn’t feel cheap. I always hear about getting a great tripod, but I don't understand why it makes a differenes. It doesn't move so I feel like whatever keeps the camera steady is fine with me. That said, I do understand the fluid head is a difference maker. The head on my tripod is pretty nice. I've shot some videoes while panning and tilting and haven't had any issues. Now I haven't done that by hand. I've always used a rubber band to assist me in the panning to get a smoother shot. As of now, I see no need for a new tripod.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 03:01 PM   #4
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Location: Belgium
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Re: Next Lens Purchase....

Will you be able to use the church tripod at corporate shoots? If it's a good one like you said then there is no issue but a good tripod is as important as a good video camera, once you have tried a cheap and a very expensive tripodhead you"ll understand why they are important, the cheap ones will not enable you to get real smooth pan or tilts, currently I use a sachtler ace which I think gives a lot for the money.
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Old May 9th, 2014, 12:18 AM   #5
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posts: 8,314
Re: Next Lens Purchase....

Next lens?
One of the various 17-50ish f2.8 IS APS-C lenses.
Next, a faster telephoto. Sigma 70-200 2.8 is a lot of lens for the money. I'd take it instead of spending almost $1000 more on the Canon mkII version of the same.
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