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Old Dec 30, 2006, 12:15 PM   #1
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Posts: 26

I bought the D80 with 18-135 kit lens. I am very impressed with the camera and kit lens so far.

Now I am thinking about buying the prime lens for portrait shooting.

But I am very new in this DSLR field, I have no idea about the DSLR lenses and confused about their focal lenght and f-stops.

Which prime lens should I buy for a portrait shooting (indoor low light) or outdoor shooting in day light (the subject is within3 feet (min) to 15 feets (max) distance from me)?

1) AF 50/1.8D

2)AF 50/1.4D

3) AF 85/1.8D

4)AF 85/1.4 D

As I said I am a newbie in this area, I would like to know the following information too:

a) Prime lens 50mm/1.8 means I cannot change the focal lenght but can change the f-stop to some point from 1.8. Is it correct?

b) I would like to know the maximum and minimum distance to the subject from the camera (me) for these prime lenses (50mm and 85 mm).

I mean, if I use 50mm lens, what is the maximum distance that I can stand from the subject and taking a picture clearly? also what distance for 85mm?

c) In low light condition 1.4 is better to use than 1.8. correct?

d) If I have 1.8 lens only, increasing the ISO settingcan get the same result compare with taking by f1.4 in lower ISO?

Any inputs are appreciated.
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Old Dec 30, 2006, 1:44 PM   #2
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The lenses will all focus out to infinity so from a lens standpoint you can be as far away as you want. The limiting factor on distance is how close they will focus. Before buying anything I would strongly suggest playing with what you have a bit and get more educated on photography. Maybe get a magic lantern book for your camera and learn the differences in different focal lengths, relative sizes of near and far objects, appertures, depth of field, etc.

Set your lens to 50mm & 85mm and see how different things look. This will help you decide what length prime you want. For portraits you likely will want fairly shallow depth of field which means a fast lens (I have both the 50/1.4 and the 85/1.4, great lenses), but the 85/1.4 is pricey so you might decide that the 85/1.8 is good enough.

Good luck,

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Old Dec 31, 2006, 1:45 AM   #3
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Jsfox, Thanks alot for your good advice. I will follow your advice and decide what I need later. Probably I might needsome more advice from expert like you before buying the lenses.

Wishing all of you a Very Happy New Year 2007.
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