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Hi, I'm using a Canon 1000D with it's original lens. Can anyone tell me if this is camera has been known to give soft images? Thanks.

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Any camera & lens can give soft images... it really depends how you use them ;)

 

I assume you have one of the Canon 18-55 kit lenses? There have been several versions of the Canon 18-55 kit lens. If you have the 1st version (18-55 USM) then I believe that could have some issues, especially when shooting wide open (max aperture). Later versions were much better.  You can tell which lens you have and its performance by looking at the reviews here (scroll down towards the foot of the page for the 18-55 lenses). I had the Canon 18-55 IS Mk I (which replaced the original USM version) and it was sharp enough for Alamy when used with care, although chromatic aberration was an issue.

 

If you're getting soft images that you wouldn't expect, then try the following. For maximum sharpness try shooting at around f/8 in good light at around ISO 200-400 possibly using a tripod. If you're still getting soft images, then try contrast detect autofocus (live view focus) as this will eliminate any front/back focussing issues that might be present in the phase detect AF. Also try checking the in camera sharpness setting. Try with IS ON and OFF to check that's working OK.

 

Mark

 

Edited by M.Chapman
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Hi,

Thanks for your replies. I appreciate your explanation Mark. I'll have a look at the lens.

 

Regards

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My experience of a similar low-budget Canon with that particular lens (both original and more recent versions): the camera is capable of taking superb images, but the lens lets it down. I bought the EFS 17-55 f2.8; currently reprocessing some old images with this lens and it really is excellent. If this is too expensive, I would look instead at small prime lenses, as even the cheapest of these is far better than the kit lens (e.g. EFS 24mm or EF 50mm). Only problem is there doesn't seem to be a wide prime, so it's more limiting. Another advantage with primes is that buying second hand is more reliable, as there's fewer moving parts in the lens, so less to go wrong (although both of the above are cheap when new).

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Hi Robert,

 

This is really helpful, Thanks.I definitely will acquire new lens. I'm glad you said that the camera is good. I was worried about that too. Is Tamaron worth looking at?

 

Thanks,

 

 

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No idea about Tamron, I'm afraid, I've never had one. Look at online reviews.

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If the lens is the original non IS 18-55mm you will get soft images on too many occasions for it to be reliable in satisfying Alamy QC standards.  The later IS models are far better.  Having said that it's worth investing in a better lens.  Used copies of the 15-85mm IS are relatively inexpensive and more than good enough for Alamy.  I've never had a failure with mine on three separate Canon bodies and the images certainly sell.  For example:

 

Devon+Life+front+cover+Nov+2017.JPG

 

Front cover of Devon Life magazine back in November.  15-85mm at 16mm on my 80D.  Nice little earner.

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Thanks John, I'll certainly be getting a new lens. I'll see if I can get original Canon lens be it used or new.

 

:)

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36 minutes ago, John Richmond said:

If the lens is the original non IS 18-55mm you will get soft images on too many occasions for it to be reliable in satisfying Alamy QC standards.  The later IS models are far better.  Having said that it's worth investing in a better lens.  Used copies of the 15-85mm IS are relatively inexpensive and more than good enough for Alamy.  I've never had a failure with mine on three separate Canon bodies and the images certainly sell.  For example:

+1

Agreed most of my early shots on Alamy were taken with the Canon 18-85mm IS lens. A very good lens with a good zoom range. A few things to be aware of.

 

1) It can show enough CA to cause an Alamy QC fail at the wide end, strongly recommend you turn auto CA removal ON in Lightroom or DPP (if it has it).

2) It's quite a bulky and heavy lens (it's very solidly built with reasonably wide aperture).

3) It takes a 72mm filter so factor that in when checking pricing or negotiating a deal.

4) If buying secondhand watch out for de-centered copies. I bought secondhand and discovered (too late) that the left and right sides of the frame focussed at slightly different distances at 15mm end. I had to adjust the lens mount with a shim, then it was most excellent. Therefore, if you buy secondhand, go for some sort of warranty and, in any event check, the lens out thoroughly ASAP.

 

Mark

Edited by M.Chapman

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2 minutes ago, M.Chapman said:

+1

Agreed most of my early shots on Alamy were taken with the Canon 18-85mm IS lens. A very good lens with a good zoom range. A few things to be aware of.

 

1) It can show enough CA to cause an Alamy QC fail at the wide end, strongly recommend you turn auto CA removal ON in Lightroom or DPP (if it has it).

2) It's quite a bulky and heavy lens (it's very solidly built with reasonably wide aperture).

3) It takes a 72mm filter so factor that in when checking pricing or negotiating a deal.

4) If buying secondhand watch out for de-centered copies. I bought secondhand and discovered the left and right sides of the frame focussed at slightly different distances at 15mm end. I had to adjust the lens mount with a shim, then it was most excellent. Therefore, if you buy secondhand, go for some sort of warranty and, in any event check, the lens out thoroughly ASAP.

 

Mark

Couldn't agree more, Mark.  Oddly enough, one of my reasons for buying mine (second hand from MPB) was the 72mm filter size.  I had a good polariser in that size that I used on my old 28-135mm and 180mm macro and needed to save a bit of money so the 15-85mm was a natural choice.  I don't find CA too bad - but I've always got the correction set by default in Lightroom and check every image at 100% to set defringing at an appropriate level if required.  No decentering problems with my example - it would have gone back if I'd seen any.  

 

For me it makes a good companion to the 70-300mm L when I want to travel a "little" lighter.

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Thanks, Mark. I think I'll go to a camera shop and get an opinion, then decide on the lens. I'll keep your suggestions in mind.

 

I'll probably end up buying  new lens anyway, so if they can offer a good lens like the ones suggested here, I'll probably go for it. Not too expensive of course!

:)

 

Edited by ALCEM

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14 hours ago, ALCEM said:

Hi Robert,

 

This is really helpful, Thanks.I definitely will acquire new lens. I'm glad you said that the camera is good. I was worried about that too. Is Tamaron worth looking at?

 

Thanks,

 

 

 

The higher end Tamron lenses are very good optically but I don't know about the cheaper ones. I would second Robert's suggestion of looking at prime lenses as these are relatively cheap and often excellent optically. 

 

 

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I would certainly check out a lens I already owned before replacing it. It might be a good example and sufficient for your needs. You could stick to f5.6 or smaller when possible.

Maybe post a few 100% crops here and get some opinions.

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13 hours ago, M.Chapman said:

4) If buying secondhand watch out for de-centered copies. I bought secondhand and discovered (too late) that the left and right sides of the frame focussed at slightly different distances at 15mm end. I had to adjust the lens mount with a shim, then it was most excellent. Therefore, if you buy secondhand, go for some sort of warranty and, in any event check, the lens out thoroughly ASAP.

 

You make my point well! The 15-85mm is an expensive lens however, even used, and with a Canon 1000D and kit lens I assume the OP is on a tight budget; for the price of that lens, s/he could buy two or three small primes - say, 24, 50 and 85. Less versatile but the image quality would be far higher for an equivalent price.

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Thanks. I'll consider the options available and make a decision. I'll look at primes and original lens.

 

:)

Edited by ALCEM

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