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How to choose a lens for my first DSLR?

I am new in the world of photography. I bought a Canon 60D camera. With my camera I have no lens. Now I am really confused. After one day research I decided to buy a prime lens Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM. But I am not quite sure is it intelligent decision or not? I am little bit confused about this lens. Is it good for portrait photography? Looks like I am in trap. I am interested to buy mid range lens with reasonable focusing speed. Can any one give me a suggestion which one should I buy?

Here is my consideration points--

  1. focusing speed within 2 to 3.
  2. Prime or zoom lanes any one would be OK. I am thinking of prime lanes because of the it's image sharpness. But I am not sure. (Give me some suggestion)
  3. 20 to 150 mm zoom will be enough for me.
  4. I am student I do not have huge amount of money so cheaper and good quality lanes will be affordable for me.

Any suggestion would be appreciable. Thanks in advance.

  • Welcome to the site. This is probably covered in many other threads here. Basically I think you are asking "what first lens should I buy" which pretty much every aspiring photographer thinks at some point, so we have great examples of this question already being answered here.
    – dpollitt
    Jul 24 '12 at 16:59
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    See also photo.stackexchange.com/questions/4316/… , photo.stackexchange.com/questions/4047/… , and the entire [equipment-recommendation] tag which is full of very similar examples. The 100mm f/2.8 is a great lens, but it would be limiting for a first and only lens in my opinion. It is possible to use just that, and it is great quality, but it isn't a zoom and isn't extremely wide either. The 50mm f/1.8 is a very common choice for a first prime outside of the kit lens.
    – dpollitt
    Jul 24 '12 at 17:02

As dpollitt said, the 50mm would probably less limiting, especially if you ever plan to shoot indoors. Getting anything other that closeups on faces would require a rather large room. Even the 50mm could be a bit tight, but the 1.8 version is a real bargain.

You could also consider some of the EF-S lenses; there are several good all-round zoom lenses to choose from that also are cheaper than the full-frame ones. The "kit-lenses" (various versions of EF-S 18-55mm) have a bad reputation, but the others (EF-S) are not all as bad. Generally these lenses are also small and easy to carry around.

Since you mention a macro, the EF-S 60mm f/2.8 USM is supposed to be a very nice lens, and less expensive than the 100mm (and perhaps less limiting).

  • thanks.. for your ans.. what about Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM. I just found it with some reviews. Seems that, it would be a good option also, considering prime lens and reasonably focus.
    – Shahjalal
    Jul 24 '12 at 23:46
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    @Shahjalal - as has been pointed out in both this answer and the comments to your question, it's a matter of working distance. An 85mm lens on a Canon APS-C camera means you need to be 7-8 feet (call it about 220-250 cm) away from the subject for a head shot (farther to include more of the subject), and you likely want to have the subject some distance away from the background as well (if for no other reason than to avoid shadows). Including room behind the camera for yourself and space for lights and reflectors, you'd need a large room to make an 85mm work indoors for portraits.
    – user2719
    Jul 25 '12 at 0:54
  • The 85 EF-S is "sharp as a tack" indeed. But a normal room in a home is not large enough to use it in.
    – JDługosz
    Feb 2 '15 at 11:40

you can look for Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 its much cheaper that canon's 17-55mm f2.8 and quality at par with it.

  • I found the Canon compelling because I use it for video, and the Sigma et al. have focusing noise that is picked up by the in-body microphone.
    – JDługosz
    Feb 2 '15 at 11:41

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