Is it worth to buy Canon EOS 650D with 18-55 IS in a kit, or it is better to buy only body and other lens (something more universal 18-135 e.g.)?

  • This question has already been asked: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/3280/…
    – Michael C
    Mar 26, 2013 at 20:34
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    100% of the time I would say skip the kit lens. As for the remaining 0%, you can probably find a reason for it ;)
    – Itai
    Mar 26, 2013 at 20:35
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    @Itai: Both the EF-S 18-55 and the EF-S 18-135 are kit lenses. Considering the current price at Amazon is $648 for the 650D body only and $649 for the 650D + EF-S 18-55 IS, is there maybe 1% of the time you wouldn't skip the kit lens? By the way, my favorite kit lens is the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM that came with my 5DII for only $700 more than the body only. Should I have skipped that one?
    – Michael C
    Mar 26, 2013 at 21:25
  • @MichaelClark - The 24-105mm F/4L is an excellent lens, I'd call it a bundle rather than a kit lens. You can tell because you probably got it in a different box than your camera. Kit lenses usually come in the same manufacturer's box with the camera, probably because they do not deserve their own box.
    – Itai
    Mar 26, 2013 at 22:33
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    @ital, the one box rule is no longer true. I bought a Canon T4i and it was cheaper with the kit 18-55 than body-only. It came in two boxes. I sold the 18-55 unopened, new in box. Mar 26, 2013 at 23:40

2 Answers 2


I really depends on you and where you are at in your photographic development. If you're just generally interested in photography and don't really know exactly what particular aspect or type of photography you want to do, the kit lens is a good way to get started without spending a lot in addition to the camera body itself.

Even if you know that you are going to want to take pictures at longer focal lengths than 55mm, there are two ways to look at it: 1) Go with only one lens and get the 18-135mm 2) Go with the cheaper 18-55mm lens and add the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS for your telephoto lens. That would give you almost twice as much reach with two lenses for only a few dollars more than the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS.

Depending on where you buy it, there isn't that much difference in price between the best prices on the 650D body only and the 650D with the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II. At amazon.com here in the U.S. the current difference is $1 (from $648 to $649). Buying the 650D with the 18-135 raises the price $150 to $799. For about $200 you can pick up the 55-250, which would bring your total to about $850 for the 650D, the 18-55, and the 55-250.

When you read advice about skipping the kit lens and getting a better lens instead, they're normally talking about much higher quality lenses like the EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS that sells for about $1,100, the $500 Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 Di II, a fixed focal length lens like the EF 50mm f/1.4 that sells for about $350, or the EF 24-105mm f/4L that sells for around $1,200. There really aren't a lot of image quality differences between the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II and the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS in the range they share in common. The 18-135 is a little sharper between 35-50mm than the 18-55, but not to the point it would be noticeable in a lot of your pictures at 4X6 or 5X7 print sizes or in images re-sized for web use.


Different shops sell the 1100D with different prices, as usual. Now, an example from Finland. There is three options to buy Canon 1100D.

  • Canon 1100D body only = 329 euro
  • Body + 18-55 non-IS = 299 euro
  • Body + 18-55 IS = 349 euro

If I was buying this camera now, of course I would take the kit lens with it, the non-IS version, because that is the cheapest option right now. So, if you were living in Finland, you would be asking if it is worth spending 50 euros on an IS kit lens. Is that, what you wanted to know?

Kit lens is good to have for those occasions when your wife or kids want to take a photo or two. Better they abuse the cheap one, than the better lens you reserve for yourself.

  • Funny, I'm pretty sure the question was about Canon EOS 1100D, when I started to type my answer. Was this merged to another question? Mar 26, 2013 at 21:39

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