I currently have a Canon EOS 60D but looking to upgrade to a full frame camera.. But I also need to purchase an all around lens (24-105L).. I have the budget for only 1 of 2 items. What should I do??
Thanks all and looking forward to your answers~
closed as too localized by mattdm, MikeW, Paul Cezanne, AJ Henderson, dpollitt Jun 17 '13 at 23:04
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So you can use your existing APS-C lenses and any Full-Frame lenses on your 60d, but can only use full-frame lenses on full frame canon cameras (at least, in a nutshell : I can be wrong! Please double check!)
So I'd recommend you to first buy the lens, if you definitely have a use for it. Otherwise, in addition to the body, you'll need also full-frame lenses (such as the 25-105 !) ...
It's a beautiful lens (L series, very sharp and with good colors, solidity, coating, etc), that will also go well with your future full frame camera, once you get it (having a full frame camera entitles you to the best L-Series lenses of canon, which are needed to get the most out of the better body/sensors of those cameras)
But remember the cropping factor: on your 60d, the 24-105 will be having the 1.6x cropping factor (or "multiplying factor") : Only a smaller part of the lens will end up on your smaller sensor, so it becomes a 38-168 equivalent (so, no longer really a wide angle, but on the other end a bit more zoom). It's still an ok choice, but less flexible (no shooting of many people in a small room...) : you definitely have to TRY it first
I am not sure why you think you cannot get both the lens and the body at the same time. The EF 24-105 L has always been the kit lens for the 5D II. At the moment, you can pick up the Canon 5D II body only on Amazon for $2649, but on B&H you can pick up the full kit (5D II + 24-105L) for a mere $2699. I would be particularly surprised if an extra $50 was really out of your budget.
It should also be pointed out that the Canon 6D, the true replacement for the 5D II, is only $1899 brand new, and in a kit with the 24-105L is $2399. The differences between the 5D II and 6D are small, and there are some ways that the 5D II is a better camera...but you can't really go wrong with either.
If you are intending to go with used equipment, you should be able to pick up the 5D II + 24-105L for cheaper than either the 5D II or 6D kits...possibly below the $2000 mark out the door.
My recommendation? Go to B&H and buy the full 5D II kit, or go to Amazon and pick up the 6D kit, and be happy owning BOTH items! :)
My general philosophy has been to build up lenses with cheaper bodies and then switch up to bodies since APS-C can take EF lenses but full frame bodies can't use EF-s lenses. For getting the lenses you need cheaply, EF-s lenses require less of an initial investment and as you replace them with better EF lenses, you can build up a full set of the lenses you need and then move to a full frame camera without losing any capability.
It isn't the right solution for everyone, but in general, your image quality is going to improve on just about any camera body with better optics and your image quality will also improve on just about any lens with a better camera body. You'll get improvements either way, so it really comes down to which way gives you the most benefit at any one time.
Optics also tend to stay current longer than bodies. A new version of each camera line is released every couple years or less. Lenses can stay current for 5 to 10 years+ depending on the lens and improvements are often far more incremental than bodies. Thus, if you invest in glass, you lose the investment slower than if you invest in bodies. That and the cheaper lens coverage are my main reason for going glass first.
That said, the main reason to go body first is if you need some feature that isn't supported by a cheaper body. If you need narrower depth of field for example, then upgrading to a full frame body before a complete set of EF lenses might be worth it if you need it more than having more complete lens coverage. Similarly, if you need the low light performance or AF performance of a higher end body, it might make it worth going body first.
So my advice is to first get a body that has the features you need, then invest in glass till you have the optics you want in EF mounts and then get the body you want. You can switch that to having the optics you need in EF if you have a stronger desire to have the camera body features than to have some particular lenses available to you.