02-19-2017 08:51 AM
What is your budget? Since your interest is birding maybe start with 18-55mm STM kit lens and a 70-200 f/2.8L IS.
As budget allows then get the 400mm f/5.6.
02-19-2017 10:02 AM
"...start with 18-55mm STM kit lens and a 70-200 f/2.8L IS."
Except they almost give the 18-55mil away, I would waste neither time nor money on it. If you are truly into this you will replace it soon besides.
The 70-200 f2.8, despite it being one of the best lenses ever, made in the entire world, it isn't a bird lens. Unless you can get very close. The a fore mentioned ef 400mm f5.6L is the one you want for birding. 300mm is pretty much minimum for birds and I mean minimum. 400mil to 600mm are better. Much better!
To start you never ending journey into the fabulous world of photography get the 80D along with the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Lens and Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM Lens. Yeah, two lenses to start. Add the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Lens as you progress.
02-19-2017 10:24 AM
Except if you're not birding you max out at 55mm. The 200mm image can always be cropped. Starting out sometimes means compromises.
You are correct, the 18-55 is almost a disposable lens. But it is decent in good light, can be sold, and frees up resources to put into a one-time purchase lens.
02-19-2017 10:34 AM
"Starting out sometimes means compromises."
Exactly, that is why I suggested the 400mil adding the 70-200 later. Personally I would rather get the 400 along with the 70-200 over ever getting the 18-55. Just me I guess!
02-19-2017 10:38 AM
"How about starting with a EF-S 18-135 mm f/3.5 - 5.6 IS?"
Too far. Way too far! That will even tax the ef 400mil. Or feeder is 8 or 10 meters and I use a 600mm zoom.
02-19-2017 10:51 AM
The EF-S 18-135 is a good all around lens. If you go with that I'd also spend the $180 for a refurbished 55-250 STM. See post 44 above to see a screenshot of that lens.
ebiggs1 has excellent recommendations if cost is not an issue. Only you can decide what works for your wallet.
Another factor to consider is what you are going to do with your images. 40x60 wall hangings vs digital sharing present two entirely different quality demands.
02-19-2017 10:57 AM
Starting out sometimes means compromises.
Your above should be made a "sticky" and displayed at the top of this site. It is the best advice I've read yet.
As a beginner myself, your statement was my guiding philosophy. Hence, the entry level T6 kit was perfect for me in all respects. It is helping me to learn DSLR photography and to make the most of what I have.
I hope your statement above becomes the OP's philosophy, too. Because at this rate, if he continues to agonize over what gear to purchase, he will never take a single shot.
02-19-2017 11:17 AM
"Starting out sometimes means compromises."
This is so true. At least for most of us but the compromises need to be logical. Making the wrong choices may well mean discouragement and abandon the whole idea of photography.
In this case birding seems to be a major point. So why make a choice that will make that point impossible or at least disappointing? At 60 feet a bird is going to be small in the frame with a 135mm lens. Very small. I would label that disappointing, don't you? Trouble is most meed to learn this the hard or expensive way.
02-19-2017 01:48 PM
Our bird feeder is 20 meters away. How about starting with a EF-S 18-135 mm f/3.5 - 5.6 IS?
That is a great lens for walking around like a tourist. Not very good for shooting birds, not unless you're in a zoo and the birds are in a cage that's 10 feet away.
The image quality of the 18-55mm STM kit lens that comes in some 80D camera kits is a great lens, too. I would go for the 18-55 camera kit over the 18-135 len because the larger lens WILL cast a shadow when used with the built-in flash. They really do practically give away the 18-55mm lens with the 80D, while the 18-135 kit costs significantly more.
The higher cost of the 80D with 18-135mm lens kit will cut into your budget for a birder lens, and accessories like a quality tripod. You will want a quality tripod to take pictures of your feeder. I think you will need at least 300mm of focal length, although,
I think that you can get into the hobby just fine with the aforementioned EF-S 55-250mm IS STM lens. Is it a state of the art lens? No. Does it take sharp photos? Yes. Will you learn about birding? Most certainly, you will. Will it be fun? I hope so. Just remember that it takes patience. Birding reminds me a whole lot of fishing.
If a feeder doesn't work, because it attracts squirrels, then a bird bath is the next best thing, maybe better.