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Old Sep 26, 2007, 11:33 AM   #1
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I have been asked to photograph a friend's parents' anniversary party next month. I have a Rebel XT and have been saving to get a new lens for this event. It will be indoors and probably not the best lighting, so I need some guidance on which lens to purchase.

My choices as of now are:
Tamron 18-250
Sigma 18-200
Sigma 17-70
??????

I am leaning towards the "zoom" lenses so I'm less intrusive, but I know there will be sacrifices with the lighting and aperature. My budget is $400 to $500.

I would love for anyone's input, opinion, or help! :-)

Thanks!!!
jnew
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 11:36 AM   #2
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How about a good flash?
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 11:41 AM   #3
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Yeah, that is on the list too (and I would love any recommendations), but I still need a decent lens. I have been selling my "cheaper" lenses to help fund my new lens (and flash).

Thanks!
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 1:36 PM   #4
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Gee whiz! You aren't asking for much. Price $400 for an fast indoor zoomlens? You almost have to go 3rd party lens. I have had great success with the Tamron's 17-50 f2.8 and 28-75 f2.8... I have tried canon's 30mm f2.0, 50mm 1.4, 85mm f1.8. However the zooming with the feet becomes tedious. the image stablizer lens may be good try but cost is high. With the f2.8s you may be able to get satisfactory results if you use ISO 400+. Shoot Raw and you may be able to boost exposure a bit without image quality being severely compromised....as NHL says a Flash may be the best option...Hope someone else has suggestions...
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 1:43 PM   #5
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The flash is infinitely more important than the lens in your situation. Whether the lens is 2.8 or 5.6 will make little difference - you'll want the dof of 5.6-8.0 anyway.

Also, it's important what the venue is and whether or not you'll be able to bounce the flash. If you can't (ceiling = too high or light obsorbing) then you'd want to use a flash bracket.

An occasional shallow-DOF shot would be nice but more often than not you'll want photos of people interacting - not posed shots. For that you typically want more DOF - which brings you to 5.6 or 8.0

The Canon 430EX is a very decent and capable flash.

If you need a bracket (which means you also need the $50 off-shoe cord) I can recommend the Custom Brackets CB-Junior as a very good quality introductory bracket. The flash alone will eat up $240 of your budget. If you need the bracket that will eat up another $150 (100 for bracket, 50 for cord).

Believe me - if your choices are:

1. Buy new lens but use on-board flash

2. Buy external flash and use existing lens

You'll get much better results with option 2.
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 2:38 PM   #6
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JohnG wrote:
Quote:
The flash is infinitely more important than the lens in your situation. Whether the lens is 2.8 or 5.6 will make little difference - you'll want the dof of 5.6-8.0 anyway.
Exactly - Since this is a party you want everyone to be in focus and not shoot with a fast (i.e. wide aperture) lens and isolate the subject...
This may help: http://www.lumiquest.com/lq931.htm
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Old Sep 26, 2007, 3:39 PM   #7
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Thanks for the excellent comments guys. I willshift my focus towards the flash instead of the lens... and move it up my list of necessities.

Thanks again for everyone's help - it is much appreciated!!!!!!

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Old Sep 26, 2007, 5:31 PM   #8
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Definitely an external flash is most important as others have mentioned. as for a lens in the $400-$500 range, what about the canon 28-135 with IS. Not the best lens in the world but is quite decent. Can't do ultra wide angle but, it covers quite a nice zoom range.

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