I walked into Henry’s last weekend with a simple goal, explore the options for a low light lens for my Canon 40D (which I brought along). I have been frustrated with shots where I do not have a flash, but still want a crisp shot (Like Ethan’s school play, where he had a major role and I found it tough to get that great, low light clear shot).

The staff in the shop are very knowledgeable and after a relatively short discussion, I landed on the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 (Although Aden Camera has it at a lower cost .. so will need a price match).

I now have something to request for under the tree. A single item does not a list make. But he was not done with me …..

The clerk then asked me about the lens on my 40D for walking around. ‘You see’ he pointed out ‘You really need to think about upgrading that glass (The term that we non-expert photographers are not allowed to use), because that really isn’t a great lens’.

I took it hook line and sinker. ‘Really?’ I responded.

By the time I was finished understanding just how deficient my kit is (Other than my 70-200mm zoom lens), I was left wondering how it was possible that I had gotten a single good shot in the last couple years?

It was pretty clear, thanks to his fantastic ‘purchasing roadmap guidance’ that a list was needed. He laid it out so neatly:

1. The 50mm, already decided. That is first.

2. Upgrading the walk around lens to either a Canon 17-55mm F2.8. UNLESS …. I decide to act on purchase roadmap point Number 3 (which he insisted really isn’t an option if I want great shots), in which case I need a Canon 24-70mm F2.8 USM due to his educating me on the difference between a cropped and un-cropped camera. (I have read a ton since, seems that the 24-70mm might be a good choice regardless of cropped/full frame .. although there is no definitive answer!)

3. An upgrade to a full frame DSLR like the Canon 5D Mark II.

LOL. He did a great job because I didn’t leave feeling that he had pressured me in anyway. He painted a picture for me. At one point he even said ‘Make sure you shop around’.

I do love a great salesperson and watching an upsell.


  1. The Sigma 50 1.4 is a great lens….. if you get one that focuses. Just be prepared to HAVE TO take it to Sigma for calibration. Honestly I’ve never seen a copy for Canon that hasn’t needed calibration. I went through 4 copies… no joke.. My brother is on his second and has to take it for calibration (he gave up returning it for another copy… they all need calibration!).

    Anyway, don’t let that deter you. The Sigma folks are pretty good at turning it around quickly.

    Oh, and P.S…. Please don’t listen to Henrys sales guys… they don’t know anything.

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