So I borrow this camera from my mom who likes photography, but doesnt use it anymore. Its a Canon 350d. I've just started photography and quickly realise that i cannot crop that much without sacraficing much image quality.

The lenses I have is: Kit lens 18-55mm Zoom lens 80-200mm (https://www.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Review/Canon-EF-80-200mm-f-4.5-5.6-II-Lens.jpg)

I'm planning on eiter buying a new body. Or use the money to buy a new lens, like a 50mm prime or a 300mm zoom lens. I also dont think my camera can whitstand weather that much. This is bad since I live in the arctic region with snow most of the year. So what do you think?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Just to double check this, are you needing to crop much when using the 80-200 at 200mm ? How aggressively do you crop ? \$\endgroup\$ Apr 28, 2020 at 15:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ Your camera can take good pictures, but you need a better lens so you do not need to crop. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 28, 2020 at 19:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @StephenG: I know this might be a easy fix by just simply put the camera to vertical position. But if you want to make a instagram crop from horizontal picture. Then the quality of the photo gets bad. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dadahu
    Apr 29, 2020 at 13:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ Related: Upgrading EOS 350D or changing to full frame for low-light improvement? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 30, 2020 at 9:20
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Why do you feel the need to upgrade anything before you start learning photography? That's like trying to choose which sports cars to buy to go racing with before you learn how to drive. Shoot with what you've got until you discover a way in which your current camera and lens limit what you are capable of doing with a camera. Then you'll know what specific aspect you need to upgrade to do what you want. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 30, 2020 at 19:38

2 Answers 2


Your mom's camera has 8 megapixels. The 18-55mm kit lens is about optimal for a 8 megapixel camera. No need to upgrade that lens without upgrading the camera body.

I'll suggest you to get at least the EF-S 55-250mm IS STM lens. It's much cheaper than the EF 70-300mm IS USM lens. It's also cheaper than a new camera body.

The 70-300mm would be longer at the long end (which is a plus) but at the short end too (which is a minus), while being faster to autofocus, but very much heavier and also more pricey. However, the 70-300mm would support full frame camera bodies too.

Because, if you crop, there's a reason for it. The reason being that you didn't zoom enough. And why would be that the case? It would be the case if you can't zoom enough with the attached lens.

The EF-S 55-250mm IS STM lens allows you to use it in very mild telephoto conditions (55-80mm) that the 80-200mm lens cannot support, so it's more likely that the 55-250mm lens is actually attached to your camera, and also in long telephoto conditions (200-250mm) that the 80-200mm lens can support only by cropping.

The 50mm prime would only be a good idea if you take lots of portait pictures. If taking head-only portraits, consider the 85mm/1.8 lens too, it's more expensive than the 50mm lens, but of higher quality.

Snow on the ground does not matter unless you plan to drop your camera. Snowfall can matter. However, the weather-sealed lenses and cameras are very, very expensive. I'd suggest you to avoid using the camera when it rains, and perhaps purchase a small weatherproofed camera bag where you can put the camera when it begins to rain.

  • \$\begingroup\$ A nice well thought out answer, IMO. \$\endgroup\$ Apr 28, 2020 at 15:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ The EF-S 55-250mm IS STM isn't that much better optically than The EF 80-200mm f/4.5-5.6. It does have IS and a little more reach, but if reach is the motivation for replacing the 80-200, then one might as well go to 300mm with an EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 30, 2020 at 9:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ @MichaelC Based on what I have read (I don't have the 80-200), there is a huge difference in image quality: the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/… vs the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/… -- certainly the 55-250 is not an L lens but nevertheless it is not advertised as such. \$\endgroup\$
    – juhist
    Apr 30, 2020 at 14:37
  • \$\begingroup\$ @juhist Based on reading that first review, the date Bryan started his web site compared to when that lens was sold (mid-1990s), as well as the fact that he has no testing results for that lens, I'm guessing Bryan did that one based on memory of a single (very used) lens he may have borrowed for a quick spin at one time or another. But the point isn't how much better the 55-250 is compared to the 80-200, it's how much better the 70-300 is compared to the 55-250 when reach is the primary reason for wanting to upgrade the lens. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 30, 2020 at 19:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ The EF 80-200mm f/4.5-5.6 is a film era lens that doesn't cut the mustard with recent high resolution digital bodies. But the 350D is not a recent high resolution digital body. It's a 15 years old design with 8 megapixels that works perfectly fine with film era consumer lenses. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 30, 2020 at 19:36

I would definitely buy a new(er) body. The camera you mention is very old now. Canon stopped producing it in 2005. It is the second entry level consumer DSLR that Canon ever made, after the 300d. It's resolution and low light performance are very much outdated.

The 50mm is a great lens, exceptional image quality and very good for low light and portraits, but I would go for another body first, or buy both.

A second hand body would also work for me. Prices are generally very low, so you get a lot for your money. I have nothing against a body that is a few years old, 2005 is just a bit too much for me.


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