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Old Feb 2, 2006, 3:08 PM   #1
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To all the great photographers out there: I am a capableamateur photographer with a D70s, looking to buy a fast prime to add to the 18-70 and 70-300 lenses that came with the D70s kit.

The question is which focal length is most usable? I tend to be frustrated with the smaller aperture of the 18-70 late afternoon or early evening, when I want to take pictures of friends or the kids as they are having fun. A flash just intrudes too much.

Which would you recommend, taking the 1.5 multiplication of the D70 into account? I must add that the 50mm 1.8 is such a cost effective solution that it is top of my list at the moment!

Vincent
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Old Feb 2, 2006, 4:57 PM   #2
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I think the 50 f/1.8 is just too good of a lens, and just so inexpensive, that it belongs in everyone's camera bag. It can be had for under $100 and is useful under a lot of circumstances. If you needed a something a little wider you could go with a 28 prime, which gets you a little closer to the 'normal' focal length. I only own two prime lenses, the 50 and the 105mm f/1.8 micro. I'd like to add a 20mm for landscape work sometime in the future.
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Old Feb 2, 2006, 6:46 PM   #3
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I'd recommend the 35/2. I'm assuming that you'll be using the lens indoors, hence the need for a fast prime.

The 50 tends to be too long in my experience (depends on the size of your home and the rooms inside, of course). Nevertheless, at the price it doesn't hurt to have it. It's certainly much more useful outdoors.

I wouldn't recommend the 28/2.8, which is a full stop slower than the 35/2 and will make available light photography a bit harder (unless of course rjseeney was referring to the 28/1.4, which is a rather pricey lens, though of superior quality).

If I were you, I'd play around with my 18-70, and see which focal length you use the most indoors, then get the prime that comes closest to it (35 or 50).
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Old Feb 3, 2006, 7:32 AM   #4
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Sundance kid wrote:
Quote:
To all the great photographers out there: I am a capableamateur photographer with a D70s, looking to buy a fast prime to add to the 18-70 and 70-300 lenses that came with the D70s kit.

The question is which focal length is most usable? I tend to be frustrated with the smaller aperture of the 18-70 late afternoon or early evening, when I want to take pictures of friends or the kids as they are having fun. A flash just intrudes too much.

Which would you recommend, taking the 1.5 multiplication of the D70 into account? I must add that the 50mm 1.8 is such a cost effective solution that it is top of my list at the moment!

Vincent
Get a new camera not new lenses. using D50 instead of D70s you can use ISO800 and still have less noises than at ISO200 with your D70. By doing so all your lenses willbehave like they are2 stops larger!:idea:
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Old Feb 3, 2006, 10:32 AM   #5
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That isn't an answer to his question.

The 50mm/f1.8 should be in everyones bag. It's almost a no-brainer when you compare the speed, quality & price.
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Old Feb 3, 2006, 11:08 AM   #6
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Yep... Everyone should have a bright 50mm (a no brainer given the low cost).

It all depends on where/what you like to shoot as for your other options.

I'd personally pick up a bright 28mm or 35mm for existing light use in closer quarters if you plan on that type of photography (I keep a 28mm f/2 on my KM 5D more often than not indoors, since a 50mm can be a bit long on a DSLR with a smaller sensor).

With a Nikon 35mm camera, I keep a 50mm on in low light, or an 85mm when something longer is needed. Given the 1.52x crop factor you have with a Nikon DSLR, a bright 35mm and 50mm would give you close to the same thing (a 50mm is not too far off, and they are dirt cheap for the image quality and low light usability you get).

For portraits where you have enough room, a longer lens would be nice for the bokeh (bright 85 or 100mm). That's a matter of opinion though. A little longer lens could come in handy for things like kids dance recitals, etc., too (or anywhere else you may need a brighter lens that's a bit longer).


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Old Feb 5, 2006, 11:27 AM   #7
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Thanks everyone,

I will definitely start with the 50mm 1.8. I will browse through my photos to look at the EXIF data to see what focal length if have been using under the conditions that I refer to (frequently indoors, people shots, low light).

If I add a 35 or 28mm, I will again look at the fastest that I can afford. I have not thought about using a prime for the school events or dance recital type events, with an 85mm. If I continue this wayI may end up with 3 primes!?

However, budget will dictate that I start with the 50mm 1.8!

Thanks, Vincent
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Old Feb 5, 2006, 11:45 AM   #8
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Don't forget the used market, either (especially if you're on a tight budget).

Sometimes you can find some pretty good bargains out there at vendors that stock used gear (for example: KEH, B&H, Adorama).


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Old Feb 13, 2006, 10:49 AM   #9
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Not one to argue with moderators, but on a tight budget how about the 18/50 f2.8 Sigma? Perhaps not fast enough but one option. I also go with the 50mm f1.8 at the price but wonder if it is wide enough for indoor use given the crop factor. I would in the end come down in favour of the 35mm f2 I think myself or, once again, how about the 28mm Sigma f1.8? This is a dedicated digital lens too and not expensive although I know nothing about it personally.
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Old Feb 13, 2006, 10:58 AM   #10
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Feel free to argue with me. There is more than one solution to a problem and someone may want the flexibility of a zoom versus a prime. Just because I happen to be a moderator doesn't make my opinion any more valid than yours. I'm wrong often.

But, I wouldn't expect a wide zoom like this to be as good in low light for more than one reason (not as bright, not as sharp, potential vignetting on the wide end at wide open apertures due to the smaller image circle of a designed for digital lens, etc.).

There are pros and cons to any solution.

I use a Tamron 20-40mm f/2.7-3.5 sometimes indoors without a flash with my KM 5D. But, f/2.8 is "iffy" for shutter speeds in some lighting (and this Tamron maintains f/2.8 through about 28mm, only losing 1/2 stop to f/3.5 on it's long end).


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