Photography Peeps! Lens question!

Discussion in 'Photography Pad' started by mrs2a50, Feb 4, 2018.

  1. mrs2a50

    mrs2a50 Pretty much the best.ever.

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    Photog friends - @KatrinaHunt13 @lcpereyra @bcgal00 @cfile @jenn mccabe @anyoneelsewhowantstoanswer!

    I have the lens itch again. My Tamron 18-300 is what's on my camera 99% of the time. I also have a 35mm that I'm having some focusing issues with. I'm waffling on a couple of other options - a 24-70/28-75 (wanting a small zoom for low light), or a 90mm macro ('cause macro is fun!). Or something else. I'm totally open! Tell me what some of your favorite lenses are and why.
     
  2. mollyc

    mollyc PrettyPinkPicturesPlease

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    Well, I always counter that question with, "what do you want to shoot, but can't right now with your existing lenses?".

    How far does open your 18-300 lens go? My 24-70 is probably my most used lens, but it is heavy. And you already have that range covered in your existing lens.

    If you want a low light lens, I'd be more inclined to find a prime that goes to f/1.4 or 1.8. That's a full stop over a 2.8 zoom and will give a lot more options.

    Macro lenses are fun, but unless you plan to start shooting a lot of flowers or insects, also kind of specialized. It can work for portraits, though, so you might like it for dog photos.

    Really, though, you need to figure out what your current lenses cannot do, and what you need to fill that void.
     
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  3. lealawson

    lealawson Well-Known Member

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    Hi! First off - I would try getting lens calibrating tool, and fine tune the 35mm. It might just need a little help to take care of the focusing. Also - photograph with it at every full f-stop (1, 1.4, 2, 2.8, 4, etc....) and find the sweet spot.

    For example - my 50mm starts at f/1.4, but it doesn't shoot very sharp at 1.4. The sweet spot is typically between 2-2.8.

    Okay - that is more just to try & fix what might be the issue with the 35mm. Now - on to my FAVORITE lens. I shoot with a Nikon, and the 105mm macro is my FAVE. It is an AMAZING portrait lens, on top of also being able to shoot macro. I get creamy & dreamy backgrounds, amazing details shots (I mainly photograph weddings) & it isn't super heavy like my zoom lens. This is a portrait of a ballerina that I took using it SOOC.
    DSC_1520.jpg

    I can't help you much on zoom lenses, because other than my 70-200 2.8, I pretty much stick to primes. So, in the end...my recommendation is you camera's version of the macro lens! :)
     
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  4. mrs2a50

    mrs2a50 Pretty much the best.ever.

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    Combo low light/walk around lens which is why I'm leaning toward the 24-70/28-75 2.8. I don't mind heavy. My 35mm 1.8 has been my go-to for indoor shots until lately. I love my 18-300 but it's not the greatest for indoors/low light.
     
  5. cfile

    cfile My bags are packed for Platform 9 3/4

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    I have a Canon EOS Rebel T3i with 18-55 mm with a 0.25/0.8ft macro and a 55-250mm macro 1.1m/3.6ft zoom I really love the DSLR camera. I really love experimenting.. of course they both have the stabilizer so that is really good as I tend to shake a little :) I also have a unipod and a tripod for those other kinds of close ups but the macros I find are really great taking the photos of the bees on the flowers etc. I love the zoom as it really allows for fun photos without a lot of grain when zooming.

    After our trip to the UK where my Nikon Cool-Pix died and we resorted to just using the cell phones only with the fun cheap extra lenses of the fish eye 180degree, the 0.67xwide and the macro some of the time that was pretty neat. We stood on the Lambeth Bridge and were able to get the Parliament Bldg. Big Ben and the London Eye all in one shot with the cell phone using the cheapo wide angle! IMG_0484 copy.jpg

    Once we got back from our trip I bought another fit in the purse for overseas trips quick camera a Canon Powershot SX620HS with a 25X Optical Zoom which takes really great photos both Macro and zoom.

    I hope this helps, but the cell phone lenses I bought from Amazon.com for like $10 for all 3 lenses and I think the above worked really well for a cell phone and cheap wide angle! :)

    I will be watching to this thread Julie @mrs2a50 to see what Jenn @jenn mccabe and the others have to say :)
     
  6. mollyc

    mollyc PrettyPinkPicturesPlease

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    What camera do you use? How does it perform at high ISO? I primarily use a Nikon D800. We went to an auto show at a convention center yesterday, and I took my 14-24 f/2.8. I was shooting at 2.8 at ISO 3200, 1/160, and was still a stop underexposed. The 2.8 lenses are so much better than a variable aperture lens, no doubt, but even then, you can still eat light pretty quickly.

    I would imagine that a 2.8 lens will give you much better performance than your Tamron, but if you are shooting indoors, even 2.8 can be kind of slow. Just want to manage your expectations. :)
     
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  7. mollyc

    mollyc PrettyPinkPicturesPlease

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    If you like the length of your 35mm, I might investigate repairing or replacing it. The Sigma Art 35 1.4 is next on my list. A lot of the 1.4 lenses have had major redesigns in the past 5 or so years, so getting a newer version might be an option.
     
  8. mrs2a50

    mrs2a50 Pretty much the best.ever.

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    I have a Nikon D7000, it does great with the higher ISOs. I'm honestly not looking to "replace" or fix what I have, I'm just looking to add, and I'm curious what others are using and why. I'm totally a hobbyist, so I don't have a need per se, but am always looking to do something fun and different than what I'm doing now.
     
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  9. mollyc

    mollyc PrettyPinkPicturesPlease

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    I'm only a hobbyist too, but personally I feel like it makes sense to fill holes in a lens lineup. You said you've been using a 35mm that isn't performing well....if you like that length and aperture, then it seems like it's a good fit for you. If you don't like the IQ, but otherwise like the lens, then I thought maybe a replacement might be the way to go.

    My 24-70 is my most used lens. I would say my second go-to is the 70-200, but I've been doing a ton of macro work over the past 9 months, so right now my 105mm macro probably actually in the second place, but I use it for a specific purpose, not an all around lens. I just got the 14-24 for Christmas and love it, but it fills a void, rather than being one I would use daily. I also have an 85 that I like but rarely use.

    If you want something "fun" then what about a LensBaby? I have two and they are super fun.

    You can't go wrong with the 24-70, IMO, and it seems like that is the one you really want. :)
     
  10. lcpereyra

    lcpereyra You won't believe my blue streak!

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    I shoot Canon, but Molly is Nikon and is way more knowledgeable about lenses than I am and has some really good points about what to consider for your needs. :)

    I have quite a few lenses, but my Canon 24-70/2.8 is definitely my most used lens simply because of its versatility. It isn't my sharpest lens and is a good 12'ish years old but still works perfectly fine most of the time for my needs. I really like my Sigma 50/1.4. It is pretty sharp, has a smaller profile than my 24-70 and my 35 prime so it is good for lots of shots, especially indoors or when I'm in crowds - my kids school, park, etc. (I carry my camera on my shoulder or hand held, not around my neck, so the profile size matters a bit more for me in these situations). I don't use it as often as the 24-70 because I like wider views in my photos and get lazy with swapping lenses. I also really love my Canon 100 macro and use it often for macro and portraits. My most favorite lens is probably my Canon 35/1.4. But because I'm lazy and don't like swapping lenses, it isn't on my camera as often.

    My 135 prime, fisheye and lensbaby never get used - pretty much zero use over the past 5 years. Not because they are "bad" lenses, but because I don't make a point to use them. My lensbaby is one of the originals and I find it really hard to use. I've read that the newer models are easier to get the hang of.
     
  11. lcpereyra

    lcpereyra You won't believe my blue streak!

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    I was using my iphone a ton the past 1-1/2 years, so much more than my dslr. So much more that I purchased the the lenses from Moment that fit an iphone. They are pretty great! Unfortunately when I upgraded to an iphone 8+ last month (from 6+) the camera lens/flash area is different and they won't work with the 8+. Totally stinks! But the Moment lenses are fun and a different route to go if you use your iphone a lot.

    I'm not sure what I'm going to do as I'm really annoyed I can no longer use them and they won't make a way for the the older lenses to fit on newer phones and don't want to give them my money again.
     
  12. jenn mccabe

    jenn mccabe She's OUR sunshine!

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    Oh gosh, It's such a personal decision! And a $$ budget thing too!

    It's been a long time since I shelled out $ for photography. About 2.5 years ago I upgraded to the Canon 6d full frame camera body and I bought a bunch of lenses. I am just a hobbyist too, and I really wanted to make the $$ stretch - so it was not easy. I only had 2 lenses (plus the crummy kit lens that I really never cared to use) so I had a lot of gaps to fill. I ended up not going for those coveted 1.4, 1.8 or 2.8 lenses (Ok well I did buy one 85mm 1.8 - but it was inexpensive) and instead went with f/4 lenses.

    I honestly do not even have a lot of fast lenses - I get by with **gasp** f/4 lenses most of the time. Shhh - don't tell! But I find that I am going for that bokeh look, most often, with outside photography and I really can make it work with an aperture of 4 in most situations. I am shooting with fair amounts of light and to get the blurred,creamy background I just shoot with a lot of distance between my subject in focus and the background. I pay very close attention to the "color story" in the distance/background - and I walk away with some pretty cool shots. I get in crazy postions and look nuts to most people passing by, but it works for me! Like Lea mentioned - there is a sweet spot on each lens and even with the 1.8 lenses I do have, I am rarely pushing it that far. I tend to open aperture fully only when I know I have incredible light on my subject (or backlighting) and I want that beautiful full round bokeh. But being hobbyists - we have the luxury of pushing it and not worry too much whether we are tack sharp bc the photos are for US (you)! So it's all in fun!

    When I evalute my settings overall - I am usually shooting #1) with enough light that I don't need to be that open, #2) and the resulting effect I want is usually not that ultra slim margin of sharpness anyway.

    I have the
    70-200mm 4L
    50mm 1.8
    85mm 1.8
    17-40mm 4L
    24-105mm macro 4L IS (but it's not at all a true macro)

    I use the 50 or the 85 when I'm inside/low light - otherwise I don't have too much of an issue with the 4.0 lenses. However that being said ... do I wish I had a faster 24 -70 all around/walk araound lens. Yeah, kinda! But with my full frame sensor that extra 105mm over the 70mm makes me happy. I believe your camera body is a crop sensor so you would be fine with the 24-70mm and since you are just looking to buy one lens, and stating low light is important to you, I would definitely go with a faster lens.

    I only have 2 fast lenses and one is the super cheap 50 mm. $100 and so versatile. I just bought a macro coupling ring for it to try some macro photography, but haven't gotten the chance yet.

    What's on my wish list? I would love to buy a macro lens, a lens baby lens and a sigma art effect. Those would next on my wish list.
     
  13. KatrinaHunt13

    KatrinaHunt13 And *POOF* it appeared!

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    @mrs2a50 the "first" big girl lens I bought was a 50mm 1.4 and I croaked at the price, but I wanted it! I shoot Nikon btw!

    Once I started shooting with it and got used to it, it NEVER left my camera! Literally! Then when I was able to upgrade my camera to a D750, I was only going to get the body, but there was a special if you bought with the kit lens so I did. I think it's a 24-105. BUT at the same time, I bought a 24-70. Uh...that basically hasn't left my camera now!!

    The girl that shoots our professional dog pics shoots Canon, but she has a similar 24-70 lens and I loved the looks of her pictures. I don't regret buying and honestly I all I need now is a really far zoom lens and I am set in the lens dept. IF you watch the 24-70 goes on sale. Mine did RIGHT AFTER I bought it! LOL

    I say GET IT! LOL I usually shoot at 3 or 3.5 for my project shots, depending on the look I am going for. I had trouble at first with the exposure, but that was only because the meter in the view finder was opposite of what my D5000 was! LOL
     
  14. bestcee

    bestcee Lorelei and Rory are my neighbors

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    Have you thought of renting a lens? Trying the different ones out to see which one you like? I remember someone saying it was great to try out the different ones before dropping the money!
    @michelepixels I believe it was?
     
  15. michelepixels

    michelepixels Enrolling at Starfleet Academy

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    Yes, I've rented a few lenses over the last few years. Most recently, I rented a 24mm lens and I decided to buy it at the end of the rental period. That's a neat way to get a new lens, trying it out first to make sure you like it. That was at Lens Pro to Go. I've also rented happily from Lensrentals and Borrowlenses. It has been nice renting, because I have not been able to afford any new lenses. This 24mm is only the 2nd lens I've ever bought since I got my DSLR in 2010 (which came with the standard 18-55mm). In 2011 I bought a 50mm 1.8 and have used that almost exclusively for the 6 years since. Now with the 24, it's so nice to have a wider field of view!

    Renting is so much cheaper, allowing us to try lenses we'd never be able to afford or may never actually want to own but just want to try out. I don't really have much use for a 200mm lens, but the days I spent with it a couple years ago were a lot of fun. Another time I played with a macro lens for a while and made some awesome photos of bees and flowers. And it's easy to rent at all 3 of the locations I named above. Just browse on their websites, where you can enter various amounts of time to calculate the cost. They will ship to my door or to my local Fedex (in case I don't want to risk it being stolen from my porch) and at the end of the rental period I just pack it back up in the box it came in, attach the shipping sticker they provided, and drop it off at FedEx.
     
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  16. bcgal00

    bcgal00 Feeling lazy with my coffee and book

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    I've read and agreed with all that's been said by everyone else. For starters, I'd first check the calibration before replacing the lens. Then, if you still decide you want a new lens, think about what you prefer, a zoom or prime lens. I love my Sigma 30 mm f/1.4 lens. It's an oldie but I've never had a problem with it. The Sigma Art 35 is a newer lens and if I didn't have my 30, I'd be looking at that. I have the Nikon 105 mm macro lens and love it but it accompanies my 24-70 or my 70-300 when I'm out and about. I wouldn't use it much by itself.

    I do suggest renting if you can to see how a lens feels in your hand, on your camera, and it'll give you a better idea of what you really might want. Or if you have any friends nearby that have a lens you might be interested in, it might be time for a visit :) and check the lens out firsthand.

    Another thing to consider, if you can get a cheap prime lens (35 or 50 mm) then maybe you could also get a 24-70 if the budget allows. I've had great success on Craigs List and in photography forums with buying used lenses. You have to inspect carefully, take lots of test shots and, of course, be prepared that sometimes you do get a bad lens but that has never happened to me (fortunately).

    Whatever you decide, good luck and take your time researching and checking your options.
     
  17. Jems

    Jems Well-Known Member

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    I agree it's such a personal decision most of my local stores rent lenses for the weekend and you get the cost dos punted if you buy a lense. If your local store does this might be an option to try some different ones out to see what you like
     
  18. bestcee

    bestcee Lorelei and Rory are my neighbors

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    @Kat ? Did you buy a new lens recently? Or just a new camera?
     
  19. mrs2a50

    mrs2a50 Pretty much the best.ever.

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    Thanks for the feedback. I guess I need to sit and think about what I want to do and what I need to do it. I will also look at calibrating my 35mm.
     
  20. KatrinaHunt13

    KatrinaHunt13 And *POOF* it appeared!

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    I am thinking maybe you meant to tag me??? LOL If not, I am just being precocious and saying you did!! LOL

    Both, new camera and new lens. It was after we sold mom's house and I found out half of the house was in my deceased dad's name and went to me automatically. I had been wanting to upgrade, but hadn't really "committed". Then once I got the camera, I was too scared to really use it, play and figure it out. It is a LOT heavier than my D5000, but I love it!
     
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