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ronin2307 Mar 4, 2010 2:25 PM

lens choice for aquarium visit
hi there, complete noob in the realm of photography and dSLRs. I just bought Canon XSi kit as well as the 50mm f1.8 lens
Tomorrow my family is making a trip to the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago and i was wondering if somebody could maybe give me heads up on the lens to use (18-55mm kit lens or the 50mm prime) and possibly what settings may work better than others.
I suspect i should use the 50mm since from my readings it appears to work better in low light, indoor type of situation, but then again Internet reviews are best consumed in large quantities.
thx for any help

griffina6 Mar 5, 2010 1:29 AM

Are you going to be taking photos of the fish in glass tanks or the people/kids looking at the fish in the tanks? or both?

In either case without flash the 50 1.8 will handle the low light MUCH MUCH better!

If you are shooting fish in a glass case then flash could be a problem with the glare so that make the 50 a better option.

However, if you want to get group shots of kids/family in a photo it can be tough at 50mm unless you have a large room. You could always use a flash for the group shots (but that might be bothersome to others or staff - I don't know).

If you just want to capture your kids looking at Nemo then the 50 would be fine for that.

If it was me and I could only take one it would be the 50mm. However, as you are new to DSLR and changing lenses is part of the deal, maybe you can take both lenses. Both are quite small so it should be easy to bring both. You may want photos of the building outside where the 18-55 would give you a better chance of getting the building.

Settings - depends on which lens. Maybe start with AV mode wide open (unless it is the 50mm then maybe start at 2.0 or 2.5). Take a few shots and see where you are and adjust the ISO up as far as you need to get the shots you want.

Good luck and post some photos.


maggo85 Mar 5, 2010 2:28 AM

I agree with Andy when it comes to the lenses and would love to see some photos from your visit - in August I'll be there too, your shots would increase my anticipation a lot :)

ronin2307 Mar 5, 2010 5:51 AM

thx for the reply first of all and sorry for the lack of description.
I imagine the targets will be mostly my wife and little one in conjunction with various attractions in the building.
The building outside may not be that interesting since it is still too cold outside for us to spend any significant amount of time there.
I also assume that flash wont be allowed in some places, so i think i will opt for the 50mm prime. however i will me carrying the other one with me as well just in case i do need it. I just didnt want to fumble around when we are there and take away from the visit.
If i manage to get a few decent shots i will post, knowing quite well that i am completely new to dslr and that pics will most likely be terrible from the technical aspect :)

griffina6 Mar 5, 2010 8:27 AM

If flash is not allowed and you'll be only inside then the 50 is the best way to go and you may not use the kit lens at all.

Have fun!

ronin2307 Mar 5, 2010 9:04 AM

That is what I had assumed. Thx for the help

Widowmaker Mar 5, 2010 4:30 PM

Is this the 18-55 IS kit lens or non IS ? If its the IS you might come out just as well or maybe even better depending on how wide you shoot.

ronin2307 Mar 5, 2010 5:52 PM

It is the IS. I took about 100 shots with the 50mm today at the Childrens Museum and ity worked out well. There were afew times I had to adjust the distance with my feet but no big deal. Definately low light so I think I will stick with the 50mm

I took


Originally Posted by Widowmaker (Post 1061455)
Is this the 18-55 IS kit lens or non IS ? If its the IS you might come out just as well or maybe even better depending on how wide you shoot.

ronin2307 Mar 5, 2010 5:54 PM

Writing this from my blackberry so forgive me the spelling errors. The tiny screen stinks

ronin2307 Mar 8, 2010 10:01 AM

5 Attachment(s)
well we got back and i had a chance to look at the pics on the big screen finally. as expected, there were a lot of throwaways, but some were pleasing to our untrained eyes.
be gentle with criticism plz :) first time dSLR user

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