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Thread started 13 Nov 2008 (Thursday) 19:08
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XSi to 5Dii?

 
Pearlallica
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Nov 13, 2008 19:08 |  #1

I'm slightly at a crossroads. I want a 5Dii. I've been working my ars off since september finding ways to generate extra income on top of my 50/hr week job. Well, a whole lot of web designing and three months later -I did it! I've scrapped up $3000 and now come the decisions.

My gear: Canon XSi, Canon 17-55 f/3.5-5.6, Canon 50mm 1.4 and the Canon 70-200 f/2.8 IS. (580EX II) It's an odd mix of low to high end, but it gets me by ;)

I shoot low budget weddings. My clients know what they are paying for. Low budget because of my lack of equipment and experience. I'm not dumb; I have a college background in the arts and I'm fairly technically inclined about photography. I'm aware of the advantages when stepping up to a 5Dii. My shots with the XSi do look stunning, though the 1-series owners might cringe at such a thought. I know what I need - a wide lens (ie. 24L f/1.4) , and a better body. I can't afford both. Infact, the money may even be better served as a down-payment for a future house. I'm really struggling with my options as you can already tell. 3G can buy me a lot of glass (2 nice primes) but only one body - the 5Dii - a behemoth of a purchase. Oh! the costs of state-of-the-art! Ultimately if I went 5Dii I would eventually aqcuire 1 or 2 L lenses. But... is getting such a "state of the art" body necessary considering my pictures are already turning out great on the XSi and my clients are happy? I know ISO 3200 and 6400 would be very useful and it would remove some lighting challenges that are present at weddings. But, I've not owned anything greater than the XSi. I haven't experienced first hand what it is I'm missing out on. I have a general idea of the advantages I'd gain - better IQ and dynamic range, face detection, low noise high ISO, less shutter lag, etc, etc. Wedding photography is a business. If I want to get more serious and be able to charge more, should I be putting all my eggs in this one basket and take the 5Dii dive? Or would some think, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it, and take the responsible road - invest in a home, build equity. The XSi will hold you over until the time is right".

I just hate shooting weddings and walking around with such a small body. Is it just a vanity thing? I feel like a news reporter shooting his work with a camcorder. I'm worried I'm just buying into an image thing if I buy the 5Dii.

A little perspective from 5D or 1D owners would be greatly appreciated as it would really help weigh my choices!

(I feel terrible. My topics rarely generate much discussion because I start them off too deep. I'm such an over-analyzer!!! :P )


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
5d2 5d3 50L 16-35 70-200 ElinchromRX600 580EX 600EX VIV285

  
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lonelyjew
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Nov 13, 2008 19:14 |  #2

I have little experience with any of the above but have you thought about getting a used 5D and a 580EX? You'd still have a nice chunk of change to get either a fast prime or a 16-35 f/2.8. You could also keep your XSI as a backup and it'll let you still use a crop sensor if you need more reach.


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Brad ­ Remick
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Nov 13, 2008 19:23 |  #3

Such a loaded question....The XSi is a fine camera capable of taking great photos! I have a 5D currently and am "on the list" at my local camera shop for the 5D mkII. The IQ on the 5D is excellent and I love the full frame. I too am looking at a having a usable ISO 3200 and 6400. Maybe you'll also like the HD movie mode for your customers. BUT... with 21 megapixels, you may need to upgrade your glass sooner then you want (but I'm sure others can speak to this better then I). Good luck.


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"You miss 100% of the shots you never take" Wayne Gretzky (Yes, I know he was talking about hockey but it seems applicable here too):) www.BradRemick.com (external link)

  
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Pearlallica
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Nov 13, 2008 19:27 |  #4

I've given some consideration to the 5D. Combined with a wide L lens, you're right, I'd be filling in two needs in one shot. And yes, the XSi/backup + cropped telephoto factor would have been the inherit benefit. :)

I suppose my thought is if I'm going to slap down 1800 on a body I might as well slap down another 1300 for the latest and greatest. I've seen the low light performance of the 1D such as at concerts - it has me coveting. It's exceptional performance. And tantalizing to consider the 5Dii may outperform in this regard. Quite a cost for such a fancy sensor. Wedding photographs all have their own standards and equipment is no exception. I feel kind of guilty for shooting weddings and not ponying up for these features/tools.


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
5d2 5d3 50L 16-35 70-200 ElinchromRX600 580EX 600EX VIV285

  
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pieq314
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Nov 13, 2008 19:28 |  #5

You can either get a lens or 5D2.

If getting a lens, I would say Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS. you should also get a flash.

If getting 5D2, you will also need a wide angle lens. You can either get Canon 24-70 f/2.8 or Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 for 1/3 the cost.


Canon 1D Mk III/5D2, Sigma 50mm f/1.4, Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX, Canon 24-105mm f/4L IS, Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS, Sigma 17-35mm f/2.8-4 EX, Canon 85/1.8, Canon 100/2.8 IS macro, Canon 135/2, Sigma 150-500 OS, Canon 500 f/4 IS

  
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Pearlallica
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Nov 13, 2008 19:43 |  #6

Brad Remick wrote in post #6682013 (external link)
Maybe you'll also like the HD movie mode for your customers.

Sorry, you're right. It's a question that nobody except myself can "answer". Insight and personal experience is mainly what I'd like, and you nailed it. My thanks...

HD movies was another idea that came to mind. My best friend works at a TV station and is big into HD video. I'd imagine dragging him along and "tripoding" the 5Dii mounting the 70-200. I have a good wireless mic system, so it would certainly be a good selling point for the bride to buy into a wedding video as well.


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
5d2 5d3 50L 16-35 70-200 ElinchromRX600 580EX 600EX VIV285

  
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Pearlallica
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Nov 13, 2008 19:51 |  #7

pieq314 wrote in post #6682046 (external link)
You can either get a lens or 5D2.

If getting a lens, I would say Canon 17-55 f/2.8 IS. you should also get a flash.

If getting 5D2, you will also need a wide angle lens. You can either get Canon 24-70 f/2.8 or Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 for 1/3 the cost.

My 580EX II has been rather useful for receptions. I prefer [ambient light] > [low flash fill]. The 17-55 f/2.8 was one of my serious considerations had I stayed exclusively with my XSi, and it would certainly balance my lighting preference nicely. I just don't feel comfortable, as I said earlier, shooting with this body as it just doesn't fit the "professional profile" that wedding photography seemingly deserves. I just want to make sure I don't buy into the social pressure of the business (go big or go home) by blowing all of my money when the XSi seems to be quite capable of doing the job. My perception of using the XSi tells me it is, but my lack of experience with better equipment may be a deceiving factor.


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
5d2 5d3 50L 16-35 70-200 ElinchromRX600 580EX 600EX VIV285

  
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Brett
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Nov 14, 2008 01:17 |  #8

Pearlallica wrote in post #6682157 (external link)
My 580EX II has been rather useful for receptions. I prefer [ambient light] > [low flash fill]. The 17-55 f/2.8 was one of my serious considerations had I stayed exclusively with my XSi, and it would certainly balance my lighting preference nicely. I just don't feel comfortable, as I said earlier, shooting with this body as it just doesn't fit the "professional profile" that wedding photography seemingly deserves. I just want to make sure I don't buy into the social pressure of the business (go big or go home) by blowing all of my money when the XSi seems to be quite capable of doing the job. My perception of using the XSi tells me it is, but my lack of experience with better equipment may be a deceiving factor.

Has anyone actually said to you "hey, your camera isn't big enough"?

It's my experience that when you show up with anything larger than a p&s, people are usually interested. I understand what you mean about appearing "professional", but unless someone's actually noticed that your camera is a few inches smaller than what they consider "professional", stand by your image quality.



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martinsmith
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Nov 14, 2008 01:35 |  #9

FWIW when I had my 400D I also had a 580EXii and a 70-200 F4 L and I expect many others have done the same.

Canon produce very good low end cameras. I know I haven't gained much in IQ upgrading to a 40D but at least when shooting models and having the bigger 40D gripped I think it looks more pro.

Have you considered adding a battery grip if it's just a size thing?


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Pearlallica
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Nov 14, 2008 06:16 |  #10

Brett Michael wrote in post #6683668 (external link)
Has anyone actually said to you "hey, your camera isn't big enough"?........... but unless someone's actually noticed that your camera is a few inches smaller than what they consider "professional", stand by your image quality.

I've bumped into a few pros, sometimes as a wedding guest. We'll talk lenses, and eventually I'll get asked which body I use. The resulting response is always something like, "oh... uh huh." So, no, I haven't been asked literally. But it seems obvious by most of their reactions that my camera is more of a toy vs. their 1D or 5D they're shooting.

martinsmith wrote in post #6683713 (external link)
FWIW when I had my 400D I also had a 580EXii and a 70-200 F4 L and I expect many others have done the same.

Canon produce very good low end cameras. I know I haven't gained much in IQ upgrading to a 40D but at least when shooting models and having the bigger 40D gripped I think it looks more pro.

Have you considered adding a battery grip if it's just a size thing?

I have the canon battery grip, yeah. The response to my original post is just what I needed and is exactly what I needed to hear since I know, deep down, putting the money elsewhere could prove to be more valuable. I wasn't sure what the general consensus might be regarding this body being at the lower end n' all. 1D users seem to fit in this elite group of photographers, and perhaps I'm just feeling obligated to at least raise the bar in terms of what is required for this level of professional adherence. My wife is pushing me to buy the 5D, but I think I know what choice really needs to be done.


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
5d2 5d3 50L 16-35 70-200 ElinchromRX600 580EX 600EX VIV285

  
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Pearlallica
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Nov 14, 2008 06:56 |  #11

by the way, I've decided I'm picking up the Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Lens - it's on sale ($150 off) and I'm feeling really confident about my decision.

edit - or the 24-70.. it's a toss up. Gotta test 'em out at the store and see which one I fall in love with first.


jonathan @ tlcphoto.com (external link) - pro wedding and portrait photog
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egordon99
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Nov 14, 2008 07:08 as a reply to  @ Pearlallica's post |  #12

The Xsi is a VERY capable camera. I bought one as a backup/second camera to compliment my 40D. Aside from the "performance" differences (buffer size, FPS) and ergonomics, the Xsi holds its own against the 40D (might even do better at high ISO, gasp!) I have NO problems showing up a a job with my Xsi, and it balances beautifully with my 70-200mm f/4 IS.

I think you made the right choice in getting the 17-55. Now go and buy ANOTHER Xsi for backup :lol:




  
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fashioneyes
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Nov 14, 2008 07:21 |  #13

My only comment would be that buying another EF-S lense is further committing yourself to the crop bodies ... I think I'd consider 24-70 L. OK its not as wide on the XSi but it could be used later on should you decide on a xD body.


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dave92270
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Nov 14, 2008 08:47 |  #14

400d_newbie wrote in post #6684475 (external link)
My only comment would be that buying another EF-S lense is further committing yourself to the crop bodies ... I think I'd consider 24-70 L. OK its not as wide on the XSi but it could be used later on should you decide on a xD body.

I'd agree; if OP is considering step up to full-frame, he should probably avoid ef-s lenses. Since he's shooting weddings profesionally he will most likely want FF at some point down the road if not right now. As much as I like my ef-s 17-55, I should've bought 24-105 since I definitely want FF camera some day soon.


5DMk2+EF 24-105mm F4 L, 40D+EF-S 17-55mm f2.8, Alien Bees, more stuff...

  
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LeoChanPhotography
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Nov 14, 2008 09:28 |  #15

the XSI is a fine camera. i was in a similar boat like you recently and went with the 5d, more for cost sake. i'm sure the 5dmkII is a fine peformer, but at a difference of almost $2k (factor in tax my friend), is it really worth it?

i picked up a FF body because the 70-200 2.8 IS on a crop (my main camera was a 40d) is not wide enough. i plan to use my 40d as my main with the 17-55mm 2.8 IS and the 5d with the 70-200mm 2.8 IS. i think that'll be all i need for weddings.




  
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