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Is a Canon EOS 50D a viable starting point for a photographer in 2020?
I found an old [color=rgba(86, 156, 210, 0.8)]Canon EOS 50D of my father. There aren't any lenses at all for this camera, but I am wondering if this body is still good for investing money for buying lenses for it.[/color]

In my company I was shooting sometimes with Nikon and [color=rgba(86, 156, 210, 0.8)]Nikkor 50mm f/1.8. It was great lens for me and was very bright. Just searching for such a lens for Canon, I already found an f/1.8 50mm Canon, Yongnuo 35mm f/2.0, and Sigma, but Sigma is expensive compared to these two.[/color]

Should I maybe change the body and buy a newer one and then should I buy lenses or is EOS 50D quite a good body these days?

I want to do portraits, fashion photos and also from time to time street and landscapes (traveling a lot).

Update: I've just talked with my Dad. He said that he has a kit EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 lens fo
50D was a robust very good camera
by today's standards it's outdated
snce it lacks video (although you can enable it via third party firmware but still no sounds and overheating problems since it was not designed o do video
as for the 17-85 this lens suffers from severe CA and distortions but can be corrected via software.
the fashion and portraits are you doing them for yourself and family or for clients ?? if you are shooting for clients just buy a modern body, otherwise 50D plus 17-85 plus Canon 10-18 should make a very good combo,
as for the 50mmf1.8 it is good at the center so so on the borders at f1.8 then gets rapidly sharp throughout the frame, its background blur is not very pleasant but some might like it, check sample online and see by yourself if you like it or not
one more thing, batteries on 50D should have died, you will need new ones you can find easily cheap Chinese BP511 and BP511a replacements they work pretty well
The EOS 50D is not a "good" DSLR for today's standards, but same goes for the EOS 450D I used to use,  and I have learned a lot and made a lot of great images with that 450D.
So as long as you do not run into important shortcomings (for you personally), there is no reason to not shoot with a 50D.

Which Nikon camera did you shoot with? The 50D is an APS-C camera, shooting with a smaller than "full frame" sensor (giving a more narrow view than a FF camera would give with the same lens). If the Nikon also is/was an APS-C camera, the experience should be comparable.

The EF 50mm f1.8 STM is comparable to a Nikkor 50mm f1.8.  It is a very affordable lens, and you can not really go wrong with it. Yongnuo lenses (especially the 50mm f1.8 and 35mm f2) should be avoided in my opinion.

If you want to make images that impress yourself, the EF-S 17-85mm f4-5.6 should kinda be avoided. It lacks in contrast. has very heavy CA at the wide end, and bad barrel distortion at that wide end too. Images will lack "punch" and have quite "meh" colours. It also has a fondness of failing (electrical flat cable failing).
But if it is there for free, no reason to try  it and see if it anyway can please you.

My advice then: no reason not to start using the 50D. Just because new cameras have more impressive specs, does not mean you can't do some great photography with an older camera.

Some images I made (with various lenses) with the Canon EOS 450D (same generation as the 50D):
[Image: 7CEDB78876BE46F5974DB4484AFC416F.jpg]
[Image: BBCC24122E0F46038D2BBABC18E2A90F.jpg][Image: D9350B767F4D481798921E3036B3371A.jpg]
[Image: 1DC5308821434F249D08A6398CFADC3D.jpg]
[Image: 5BD48FAAF5064A9F8110D93D1781EC97.jpg]
[Image: 5A37730F234B4CE098BE5057C78B815A.jpg]
[Image: 8DE91F04E0CC47B68BD04EC759436139.jpg]

The EF 50mm f1.8 STM would be a cheap start for portraits, the Canon EF 85mm f1.8 and Tamron 85mm f1.8 VC USD also for (more narrow) portraits.
The Canon EF-S 10-18mm IS STM is a cheap and cheerful ultra wide angle zoom lens, very lightweight so nice for travel and landscapes.
The Canon EF-S 24mm f2.8 is an affordable, very small APS-C lens nice for "standard" street photography.
The question is it still worth inesting in lenses to put on 50D when you can get at an affordable price newer bodies.
No one can answer you this question, however if you are shooting for clients It's better you'd better get a modern body
we have now some excellent offerings on the used market here a Canon 5Dmkii in good condition can be bought for 400 to 500$ 5Dmkiii 800 to 1000$
one year ago I met at a repairs shop a photojournalist stubbornly insisting on replacing for the second time the shutter for his 14 year old 30D....his arguments, he is used to it and happy with result, his pictures are regularly seen in local newspapers... and on TV I can often recognize him shooting at the parliament with his 30D and 17-85
FWIW Donald Trump official portrait was taken with a 1Ds Mkiii a camera from 50D era
in the same time in Brazil Orlando Brito had the best modern equipment yet he produced a disaster
Guys, just FYI: don't expect any gratitude from the initial poster for your detailed answers... just a spam account, I'm afraid.

I just removed the spam signature from the first post.

Thanks MST.

I am sort of naive, though. What is the point of such a question spam? Anyway, the 50D & 17-85 is a universe better than the camera on one's phone! My 17-85 was made in Japan. Which may explain it's pretty good performance. But...the cable did in fact fail! There is no AF anymore but AFC still works. I don't need a normal / short telephoto, and I assume it is not easy to repair. No reason I should still have it!

Also, BrightColors- I like that city street shot quite a bit. It seems to have incredible DoF! But is also very sharp and well saturated! All the motion in different directions, textures and wide dynamic range are impressive. It does make me wonder how you managed it. Its a great shot!

I like the green Orthopterran macro. All those tiny spots! Those are my award picks!
(06-09-2020, 06:43 AM)Arthur Macmillan Wrote: Thanks MST.

I am sort of naive, though.  What is the point of such a question spam?  Anyway, the 50D & 17-85 is a universe better than the camera on one's phone!  My 17-85 was made in Japan.  Which may explain it's pretty good performance.  But...the cable did in fact fail!  There is no AF anymore but AFC still works.  I don't need a normal / short telephoto, and I assume it is not easy to repair.  No reason I should still have it!  


All EF-S 17-85mm lenses were made in Japan, and none gave "pretty good performance" concerning wide angle distortion and CA, and contrast (all are the same in that respect).
(06-09-2020, 06:43 AM)Arthur Macmillan Wrote: I am sort of naive, though.  What is the point of such a question spam?

The question is not the actual spam. The pattern that seems to be common recently is to sign up as a new member, post a question that seems to be on topic (or a reply to an existing thread) and then come back a few hours later and add a signature with a spam link to the profile, which then shows up below the earlier posts.

We usually simply ban spam users and purge all their posts, but since this question led to a valid discussion that would have been removed, too, I just deleted the signature Wink

(06-09-2020, 06:43 AM)Arthur Macmillan Wrote: But...the cable did in fact fail!

The 17-85 IS is not the only EF lens with this kind of issue. The 24-105 L IS (1st gen) also can show flex cable failures, which in that case lead to Err 01 messages when trying to shoot with anything slower than f/4 at focal lenghts above 24mm.

MST- That explains a lot!  I have notices some of my sites seem to have negated the signature feature which used to be great fun to use for witty one liners!

Brightcolors:  I know you are wrong about that!  I have seen 17-85's made in other countries but it is so common for their low spec lenses that I don't remember which anymore.  In fact, all of my Canon kit lenses over the years were made outside of Japan except for that one.  I think that came with a 40D or 50D, I don't remember any more.  But I do remember thinking, "Wow, made in Japan!"

I am pretty sure that I am right about this: the EF-S 17-85mm was made in Japan. It was NOT a "low spec kit lens", for its time it has a ground breaking APS-C range (other manufacturers followed later (Nikkor 16-85mm, Sigma 17-70mm for instance0.

The lens that replaced the (in my opinion not very good) EF-S 17-85mm, the quite a bit better EF-S 15-85mm, is made in Taiwan.

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