If you had to choose two...

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If you had to choose two...

Postby yoiks » Sun Oct 07, 2012 11:59 pm

If you had to choose only two lenses to take with you on a nature hike and you wanted at least one lens to get you closer to wildlife but a second lens for wider nature shots, what two lenses would you take?
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby res » Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:35 pm

You are a cruel man!!!
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby res » Mon Oct 08, 2012 10:39 pm

My choice would be the 400 and the 70-200. NOT a light weight weight group by any means.
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby yoiks » Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:12 pm

res wrote:You are a cruel man!!!


Yes, yes... I know. :)

res wrote:My choice would be the 400 and the 70-200. NOT a light weight weight group by any means.


I could only be so lucky as to have a 400mm prime! Currently I'm using my Bigma (50-500mm) almost exclusively but I'm still using my manual focus 50mm f/1.8 to get wide in all kinds of light. I was thinking about picking up a new lens for the "other than Bigma" uses which is why I posed the question -- trying to get an idea of what others have in their bag.

I was thinking about maybe an 85mm f/1.4... but I think my brother may have talked me into picking up a 24-85mm zoom which I can use when shooting the kids but could also come in handy out on the trails. With my set-up as is, it's not so easy to manual focus on a 3 year old and 6 year old, and an 85mm would probably often be too long for use around the house/yard.

Anybody else wanna weigh in?
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby res » Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:39 pm

I think you should switch to Canon!!!! :twisted: :lol:
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby res » Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:03 pm

The hardest part is deciding what you want the lens to do. I know, they all go on a camera and shoot pictures but just as a 400 is really designed for a fairly narrow usage, other lenses of course can fill many other areas. From my perspective only, primes are wonderful but they are not designed for walk around. They can work but they do take a lot of moving around to get them to do so. Now, that 85 prime would be the bomb for portrait shots on your camera. I do not know the Nikon line up but since you have a larger lens to obviously handle your wildlife shots and are looking for something under that, I would consider the following:
*I would also watch the fstop capabilities. Yes, the cost goes up but so does the versatility of the lens. Try to get something as close to an F4 fixed or lower if you can afford it. I really appreciate the ability many times to fuzz out the background with the low fstop.
*Consider the range of zoom. If you can find a sharp lens with another 30 mm or so you will not be disappointed. I have a 28-135 inexpensive lens but I love the focal length. It is a great walk around. Yes, it has a variable fstop of 3.5-5.6 but I have used it to shoot seniors as well as landscape and an occasional deer that wanders in to close. IT is a "cheap" kit lens but again, the range is awesome and it is sharp. Try to get as much bang for the buck.
Oh, and have fun with your search. :lol:
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby Cindee » Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:10 am

I agree with res completely. I would emphasis that the f4 or lower is key to versatility. My husband has a 70-200 f2.8 which you can then use a 1.4x or 2x teleconverter which makes that lens even more versatile. I don't use it because it is heavy but if using it on a tripod it works very well.
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby yoiks » Fri Oct 12, 2012 12:35 am

Thanks guys. I agree that f stop is my primary concern which is why I was so interested in the 85mm lens. I'm gonna keep looking and hopefully pick something up before the holidays (so that I can get lots of goods shots of the kiddies).
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby res » Fri Oct 12, 2012 9:10 pm

yoiks wrote:Thanks guys. I agree that f stop is my primary concern which is why I was so interested in the 85mm lens. I'm gonna keep looking and hopefully pick something up before the holidays (so that I can get lots of goods shots of the kiddies).

It is not the best option compared to a 2.8 zoom in a 24-70+ range :twisted: but if shooting kids indoors is your primary goal, a wider angle fixed may fill in a gap at a relatively cheap cost. Since you are shooting full frame and already have a 50mm, you might consider something in the 28-35 range. Second, remember that when shooting indoors close to people, 1.4 may cause you issues as well. It will shoot with very low light that is true but the depth of field will certainly come into play. I am going to attach a link for you to have some fun with. Maybe you have already used a depth of field calculator. I have an app on my phone just so I can check things when I am shooting on occasion.

http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

The reason lenses with such small fstops are so versatile is it allows you to get very creative with the backgrounds. IF you want things in focus, you can stop it down and go with a larger aperture. It allows for more focus in the background, etc. If you want a thin plane of focus, open that baby up. With 1.4 and at a close distance, you may be able to get the eyes of someone in focus and the tip of their nose starting to go out of focus. IN a living room from 13 feet, using 50mm you will get some numbers like this (I used the canon a 5d as the main setting since it is full frame)

Subject distance 13 ft
Depth of field
Near limit 12.2 ft
Far limit 13.9 ft
Total 1.73 ft

In front of subject 0.81 ft (47%)
Behind subject 0.92 ft (53%)

Now, reduce those numbers by about 30 percent and you will be very close to true focus. (most calculators are VERY optimistic on their ranges) Now, let's go practical. From 13 feet, using 50mm, if you focus on an eye, you will have reasonable focus 6" in front of focus and about 8" behind. That means if you shoot two rows of children, the back row will be out of focus. The picture may be bright, but you will not have focus for the whole group. In this scenario, you will need to get very close to f4 to get the back row and front row in acceptable focus. Now is the time to start working on the ISO capabilities of your camera. Bump it to 1000 or so, maybe 1600 and try that. Many of the older cameras could never produce decently in that range but even in my 7d I shoot 1000 or 1600 at the football games and get very decent pictures. By going to a wider lens, you will also gain some depth of field at comparable fstops.

Keep learning and have fun. :lol:
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Re: If you had to choose two...

Postby SandyLee » Sat Oct 13, 2012 5:43 pm

Yo, Res.... you need to conduct a class for us! I'll bring the food.... Seriously!
- Sandy
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