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New Contributor
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎04-12-2014
Accepted Solution

Need recommendation on my next camera/lens buy.



To start with this what i own right now from past 2 years:

Canon 550D with 

EF-s 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS STM and

EF-s 55-250mm f4-5.6 IS STM

I've saved up around $3500 and am looking for my next investment in the camera/lenses. I'm mainly into wedding and macro photography, and ocasionaly do sports and wildlife. Till now I was using this with some accessories like wireless remote triger and a tripod to get my work. But its time for a upgrade i guess. I would like to stick with canon as a camera brand but am open for non-canon lenses.  Please put in your suggestions for me.


Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,861
Registered: ‎12-02-2012

Re: Need recommendation on my next camera/lens buy.

[ Edited ]
Your 550d (T2i) is an older model, but the sensor is basically unchanged for T3i, T4i and T5i, as well as the 60d and the 7d. The sensor in the new 70d is a bit improved, but the real difference/innovation in that sensor is the dual-pixel tech which is primarily good for live view/video.

A crop sensor is actually good for sports and macro and wildlife due to the 1.6x focal length boost. The only thing in your list that would really benefit from going full frame would be the weddings, where the extra 1 or 2 stops of hi ISO image quality would be very nice for dim/indoor/night shots. A 6d would be good for that, but of course none of your existing lenses fit it so you would need new ones.

You could benefit from improved autofocus in the sports and wildlife. The 70d has the 7d's good 19-point AF system, so it really is pretty good.

No matter what, you should upgrade your lenses. You always put the money into glass first, not bodies. You could really keep the T2i and only upgrade lenses and you would see an incredible boost. Here would be my suggestions:

1.). A fast prime (or two).
You have nothing that is good for shooting in dim light. the fixed-length lenses (primes) are brighter, sharper, smaller, and are also cheaper than equivalent IQ zoom lenses. You could get a 50mm, which is like 80mm on a crop. It would be sharper than your kit lenses, would be the perfect head-and-shoulders portrait length, and would let 4x more light into the camera. Canon 50 f/1.4 if on a budget ($350.00). The brand new Sigma 50mm on pre-order if you want something incredible (Google it! The buzz is huge.) for $950.00. It has the IQ of a $4,000 Zeiss lens for 1/4 the price. Both will work on full frame too, if you ever go that way.

For macro either of the Canon 100mm lenses would be great. Or you could get the EF-s 60mm Macro which would double as a portrait lens, but which would make you get within a few inches of your subject shooting Macro at full 1:1 magnification.

A 35mm would be a good walk-around length for you. Canon has a good new one, and so does Sigma in its new f/1.4.

2.). A good telephoto.
The Canon 70-200 line is all great "big white" L glass, and they range from like $700-800 for the f/4 and non-IS version up to the nearly legendary f/2.8 IS version 2 which is like $2,300, but well worth it. Tis will be good for sports and weddings but short for wildlife, especially birds. I hope for the sake of your budget you have no interest in birds, because the super tele lenses cost huge bucks.

See this for weddings:

And for indoor sports:

For outdoor sports:

For general purpose zooms:

You could do a 2-body thing too, with a little practice. The T2i with a long lens, and a 6d with a 35mm or 50mm for up close shots.

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?
Forum Elite
Posts: 14,418
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Need recommendation on my next camera/lens buy.

[ Edited ]

Although the rumor persists about the upcoming release of the 7D Mk II, I think I would still recommend you buy a currently available EOS 7D.  No matter if the new one is true or not the original 7D is the best buy in a nearly full on pro level body there is. 


Now to lenses, as a general guideline I don't recommend third-party lenses. No matter what someone else will say about them and how great they are, there are just as many unhappy people. Too, many will not focus right. Err 99, or they break and there is no service or customer support. You don't want to be that guy!

However, lately within the last year or two, there have been some big strides in the off-brand lens market. Notably Sigma. And Sigma makes a wonderful pair designed specifically for the Canon EOS 7D.

These not only work, they work very well.  Light-years ahead of the lenses you currently have.

I am talking about the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM Aspherical Macro Lens and the

Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 EX DC OS HSM APO Lens.  Both of these lenses are constant aperture.  A real plus. Smiley Happy


Now since you have a bit more money the next choice would be the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM Lens.  Another truly outstanding lenses for the price.


If there is enough money left over get the battery grip and an extra battery for the EOS 7D.  It makes all the difference in how the camera feels in your hands.


This will be (is) one killer outfit.  I know first hand as I have all this stuff !

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎02-28-2013

Re: Need recommendation on my next camera/lens buy.

What is your current setup not doing for you that you'd like to improve?  Don't buy new stuff just because you have money burning a hole in your pocket. 


Though, you mention macro and don't have a macro lens.  Get a macro lens, it's probably the the most significant jump in quality that you'll ever see.  Both the Canon 100mm "non L" and 100mm L are fantastic lenses.  L has image stabilization but costs much more.



Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,854
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Need recommendation on my next camera/lens buy.

Weddngs are primarily dark and benefit from cameras that can handle high ISO with low noise.  Sports and wildlife action photography benefit from cameras with good focus and focus tracking and a fast continuous shooting speed.


The single camera that's good at all of that is the 5D III... but the "body only" version of a 5D III is $3400 and it CANNOT use your current EF-S lenses (EF-S lenses only work on APS-C crop-frame size sensor cameras -- full frame cameras require "EF" lenses (without the "-S" suffix.))


That's a bit over your budget... (especially since you'd still need some new glass) but it would be an ideal body.


The 6D is considerably less expensive, excellent at low light, but the focus and shooting system aren't optimized for action photography (it would not be much different than your 550D in that regard... that camera's forcus and shooting speed aren't optimized for action photography either.)


The 7D and 70D *are* good action photography, but will give you very little improvement in low-light over your current camera -- mostly they offer a big improvement in focus system and shooting speed.



Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
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