I have had the Canon EF-S 55-250mm Lens for about eight months now and I love it. It is a great all around starter lens. I have taken great pictures from portrait to landscape and have had great quality prints. The lens is lightweight and easy to take care of. Of course there is a down side to every lens and the major downside with this lens is that in certain situations it does not let in enough light. But, I can't say that it is a fault of the product you just need to know that if you are looking to take pictures in lower light situations you may want to consider a lens made for those situations. Although I have purchased an external flash for my camera and that has really helped. As for price, all lenses are expensive so I think this lens if pretty well priced. I would for sure recommend this lens for a beginner as you are able to zoom in and out with it. Just remember if you want to zoom in from a very far distance or you are looking to take pictures in low light situations you may want to try a different lens. You just need to know what you are looking for.