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Upgrading my almost 10 year old t3i

JEDKM
Contributor

Hi all,

I have waited nearly 10 years to upgrade my first real digital camera. I am coming from a film photography background. Currently, I have my t3i and 4 lenses:

 

kit 18-55mm efs, 75-300 ef zoom, a 50mm ef portrait, and a 60mm efs macro

I mostly shoot for fun (street, nature, candid) with a few jobs on the side (portraits, small events). I have definitely outgrown the t3i and am not loving the quality anymore.

Would love to upgrade the body for under a grand ideally but could go up to 1500. Really hoping to keep some lenses but am open to upgrading those for comparable, reasonably priced lenses.

Any thoughts on which direction to go in? 

23 REPLIES 23

Tronhard
Authority

Hi, and welcome to the forum:

First it seems you do not upgrade gear often, may one assume that if you get a new camera, it will be expected to last for some time to come?

Looking at your current gear:
If the 18-55 is the same vintage as the camera, it is obsolete
The 75-300 is arguably one of Canon's worst lenses, and your images will definitely improve with a replacement.

What I would recommend is the following:
Upgrade to a Canon EOS RP with a RF24-105 lens - this gets you into the mirrorless world and full-frame photography in one shot.  There is one available right now from the Canon Refurbished store - but be fast!  These are essentially like new and come with a 1 year warranty.  The RF24-105 is a good all-round lens.

HERE is a review of the RP from Cameralabs and HERE one on the 24-105 STM lens.

HERE  is a link to that item on sale right now.

If you can afford to, get the RF 100-400mm lens it is available now on a deal from Canon HERE .  It would push your budget to about $1600, but you would have a great kit. There is a review of this lens from Cameralabs HERE .

To offset the cost, you could sell your current camera and kit lenses as a bundle - hopefully you could get at least $100 for them, so you're back in budget again.  The 50 and 60 lenses sell separately and invest in an EF-RF adapter and the EF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens (which is full frame) - with the adapter it will work well on the RP and you can use it for both portrait and macro work. They will give you the same Field of View as your 50 and 60mm lenses on the RP.


cheers, TREVOR

Professional photographer, engineer and educator since 1980

"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
"A good swordsman is more important than a good sword" Amit Kalantri
Technique will always Outlast Tech - Me

"The 75-300 is arguably one of Canon's worst lenses, and your images will definitely improve with a replacement."

What do you suggest without going to R lenses?

Canon don't make an RF exact equivalent yet, so one could stay with an EF unit and get the excellent EF 70-300 IS USM MKII lens.  It has great optics, has a nano-USM motor, which makes focusing blazingly fast, and I have used mine on the EOS 5DsR a totally unforgiving 52MP camera, and the R5 (a 45MP camera) via the EF-RF adapter with no issues.  Alternatively, one could go for the RF 100-400, which has a bit more reach and works extremely well to extend from the RF 24-105 units.


cheers, TREVOR

Professional photographer, engineer and educator since 1980

"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
"A good swordsman is more important than a good sword" Amit Kalantri
Technique will always Outlast Tech - Me

ebiggs1
Legend

Sometimes Trevor jumps way ahead on things but I basically agree with all he says. However as a nice upgrade I would wait a bit for the new R10. The R10 is the mirrorless equivalent to the Rebel DSLR series. There is already out the R7 which is an even better upgrade but at a higher cost. You can use your lenses on a new R10 but like Trevor says they really aren't the best choice. Lenses upgrade just like camera bodies do.

$1000 to $1500 isn't going to go far when you need to upgrade camera and lens. The Canon EOS RP with a RF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM (<--Corrected) lens is not possible for $1000 or even $1500 actually closer to $2000. But the R10 and lens should be around the $1500 level. I don't know if a price has been set yet. Specs for the R10 are pretty amazing especially when compared to your T3i.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

Ernie's statement "EOS RP with a RF24-105" lens is not possible for $1000" assumedly missed the link I provided when  I found one of Canon's Refurb site for that price.  In my recommendation I was particularly careful to look for a camera with a lens within budget. I also provided a link to the sale deal on the 100-400.

A lot depends on how fixed your budget is and how long you are prepared to wait. Finally, there is the availability of deals (such as on the Canon Refurb site) as some users trade up to other models.

As to the R7 or R10.  As Ernie correctly pointed out, these will come at a higher cost and with serious back-orders at the moment, you may have to wait for a while to be able to get your hands on one. The benefit is that you can use your existing EF-S lenses without a cropping effect on the sensor capacity, although I would still get rid of the 75-300!!!    If you are going to go for a new camera of this type then the R7 is the better choice in terms of performance and will likely be a better longer-term investment.  Much depends on what you need the camera to do for your photography and how much you are prepared to invest in that.

You can tell only so much from specs, but for your convenience I have compared the three cameras mentioned HERE .  I would also suggest looking at reviews on the cameras, but right now the R7 and R10 are so new that many reviewers don't have a production model available to do so.  However, when they are available, I would recommend reviews by Cameralabs.com and DustinAbbott.net.  Both of these provide comprehensive and, IMHO, unbiased reviews.


cheers, TREVOR

Professional photographer, engineer and educator since 1980

"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
"A good swordsman is more important than a good sword" Amit Kalantri
Technique will always Outlast Tech - Me

ebiggs1
Legend

Trevor I do not do links. It is just a rule I try to keep. I am sure yours are fine but its my habit to not click on links.

My reference was for the EOS RP and a Canon RF 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM Lens. Personally I would not buy the RF24-105mm F4-7.1 IS STM Lens so I would not recommend it to anyone else. However, if the OP is good with it, I am all over it for him.

 

I will endeavor to be more clear in the future.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

Well, either way you look at it, no response from the OP... I think until we get some kind of feedback on this we're flogging a dead horse.


cheers, TREVOR

Professional photographer, engineer and educator since 1980

"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
"A good swordsman is more important than a good sword" Amit Kalantri
Technique will always Outlast Tech - Me

JEDKM
Contributor

Hi Trevor and EB,

Thanks for the information thus far and a warm welcome to the community.

After a trip over to my local shop today, I was able to look at both the RP and R7. The consultant informed me that the R7 would be better for movement (sports and animal photography) and does not perform as well in low light compared to the RP (preferred for portraits and landscape). Does this sound accurate? What are the most important differences to know? Also what is the R10 anticipated to offer that these two do not? I will check out some of the links above tonight.

Trevor, you are correct that I do not upgrade often and will aim to keep this camera for quite a while. It will be my only digital (after getting rid of the current one) in addition to 35mm and medium format film cameras I use more often.

I agree with everything regarding the two older lenses. They are awful and will be replaced with a new body. EB, what would you recommend instead of the 24-105?

I have a really busy schedule right now so sorry for the delayed reply.

 

The R10 is an inferior model to the R7 in every respect: see a comparison HERE .  HERE is a review of a pre-production R7 by Cameralabs.  Since this video was published Canon have released a statement that the R7 is actually a replacement to the 90D, not the 7DII.

Because the RP has a full-frame sensor, it is more inclined to be a better performer in low light.   The early reviews of the R7 indicate that it is quite noisy over 3200 ISO, which is considered a low value these days.   

I think Ernie has reservations about the difference between the L and non-L versions of the RF 24-105 lens, not its focal range.  However, a fairly deep comparison done by Cameralabs shows that it is, in fact, a good performer at a low price and in some respects actually superior to the f/4 version.  What you lose is weather sealing and the constant aperture.  For many photographers, depending on the kinds of conditions one shoots in, that would not be an issue. 
Review of the RF 24-105 Non-L version: HERE  but including a comparison with the f/4 version on a RP body.
The f/4 version of the 24-105 will cost significantly more, and while Ernie might choose the f/4 version for himself, I am specifically dealing with your needs and budget (not my own), which I have been at pains to respect.  Remember we all have different needs and budgets and in this case yours is the priority.


cheers, TREVOR

Professional photographer, engineer and educator since 1980

"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
"A good swordsman is more important than a good sword" Amit Kalantri
Technique will always Outlast Tech - Me
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