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15-55 or 18-135?

abbeb
Apprentice

Hello, I just bought my first camera so I’m very new to the photography/videography world (canon 850d btw) and I’m confused about which lens to buy. I heard that the 15-55mm doesn’t bring out the camera’s full potential but at the same time the 18-135mm is a bit expensive and I just want to know if it’s worth the money or not.

Also what do you guys think about the 850d as a starting camera?

Thanks.

8 REPLIES 8

rs-eos
Elite

Assuming you meant to say 18-55mm rather than 15-55mm.  Anyhow, the 18-135mm would be the better lens as it would give much more options in terms of capturing subjects at further distances.

--
Ricky

Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers

Tintype_18
Authority
Authority

I have the 28-135 for a T7, E mount. I find I'm using it more than other lenses.

John
Canon EOS T7; EF-S 18-55mm IS; EF 28-135mm IS; EF 75-300mm; Sigma 150-600mm DG

Waddizzle
Legend
Legend

Welcome to the Forums.  Congratulations one your camera purchase.  

If you bought a used camera, then you will want to set the top dial to “P”.  Next, you will want to go through every menu item and reset it back to factory defaults.  You want to start off with the camera in a known state, not the settings of the previous owner.

Please tell us the full model numbers of the lenses that you are considering.  THX

When discussing and referencing specific lenses, it is best to not abbreviate the model name because their have been multiple versions of zoom lenses covering the same FL, focal length, ranges over the years.  As a general rule, any Canon lens that has the letters “STM”, stepping motor, on the end of it should be a good choice.  You would also want to see the letters “IS”, Image Stabilization.

As the other have noted, I also believe you could be referencing one of the EF-S 18-55mm lens models.  If the lenses that you are referencing end with STM, then either lens would be a good choice.  But, there is always a compromising caveat.  Each lens as its own pros and cons. 

The 18-55mm series of lenses are shorter than the 18-135mm series of lenses by half.  Either STM version of the lenses will produce clear, sharp photos.  

The 18-135 series of lenses offers the convenience of a wider range of focal lengths.  But the price you will pay for this added convenience is that the lens is too long for the built-in flash.  The flash does not raise up high enough.  The long lens will cast a shadow into your scene.  On the other hand, the 18-55mm series of lenses are much shorter and do not create a shadow when using the built-in flash.

Not being able to use the built-in flash with the 18-135mm series of lenses is actually no big loss.  The built-in flash is not very powerful, so as to preserve battery life.  It has a very limited range of up to 10 feet, at best.  The flash is best used as a fill flash for backlit scenes, not as a primary light source.  

In other words, most users never use the built-in flash.  In fact, most users never use a flash, not even an external one that sits on the hot shoe on top of the camera.

 

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."

stevet1
Whiz
Whiz

abbeb,

I am prejudiced.

I have an 850D (the T8i) as my camera, and I like it very much.

I also have the 18-135 lens and it stays on my camera about 90% of the time.I was lucky enough that the lens was gifted to me.

If you ever need any tips on how to use your camera, I'll be glad to help if I can.

Steve Thomas

Tronhard
Elite
Elite

Hi and welcome to the forum!
I am assuming that you have the EF-S 18-55 f: 4-5.6 IS STM  (as Waddizzle indicated, there are several models) as this is sold with the kits I can see.  
There are two ways you could go with this:
If you want just one lens that has a great focal range, then I would personally recommend the EF-S 18-135 IS STM or USM lens (there are two models).   That will be a great learning and development tool and would sit on your camera body pretty much the whole time.  If you needed to, you could then sell the 18-55 lens you have.
Alternatively, you could retain the 18-55 and get further reach to capture more distant objects with the EF-S 55-250 IS STM lens.  This is sometimes sold as a kit with both the body and the 18-55 lens, to give a more comprehensive reach.  You could pick up one refurbished by Canon (essentially like new) for a reduced price:  See Shop Canon Refurbished EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM | Canon U.S.A., In

However, given that you are new to photography and finance is an issue, and don't know what lens you need suggests to me you should explore the 18-55 you have for a while, learn some photography skills and then you will have a much better idea of what you need for your own style of photography.

I would suggest watching the following video from National Geographic Photographer Chris Bray:
Learn Photography - Simple, Practical - Free Photography Course 1/10 - YouTube

Also, if your library on-line catalogue has an item for LinkedIn Learning (or Lynda.com) you will have free access via that link to a site full of brilliant photography tutorials. 
You will use your library card # and PIN to access the site, then do a search for Photography Foundations.  That will take you to some great tutorials.


cheers, TREVOR

"The Amount of Misery expands to fill the space available"
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

stevet1
Whiz
Whiz

abbeb,

Waddizzle mentioned your flash.

I don't know if you realized it yet, but your 850D doesn't have an automatic, pop-up flash. You have to manually raise it up when you want to use it. When I first got my camera, I wasn't sure if I would like that feature, but I have come to appreciate it. It's far less jarring than the the flash that pops up unexpectedly. Your camera will clue you if it thinks you need a flash, but using it will be a conscious decision your part.

Your camera will handle high ISO numbers very well, so you probably won't need to use your flash all that often.

Steve Thomas

ebiggs1
Legend
Legend

Flash is a non-issue. Flash is almost an obsolete accessory any more. Plus the tiny flash on a Rebel causes more issues than it solves.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

ebiggs1
Legend
Legend

Oh, BTW, the Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Lens not even a hesitation.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!
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