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Old Sep 6, 2010, 11:21 PM   #41
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Oops, I meant a good deal on the sigma.

Thank you for posting some examples. It helps.

Diana
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 11:07 AM   #42
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I dont know what you've decided on, but I was recenty i was in similar dilemma, deciding between an 18-200mm(from what ive heard is vastly inferior to the 18-250mm) and a 2 lens combo. Well, I did some shopping around Ebay and found a Tamron 70-300mm for $50 like new Buy it Now (make sure you get the Di version, sibce there are other older models out there), as opposed to $230 for the zoom lens, which made it a no brainer since that left me plenty money to get a 50mm 1.7 prime (for indoors and portraits) for $85. Since then I've found that i really don't need the kit lens too badly, although it's still nice to have around (but even then only 18-28mm about, which makes me interested in the 10-20mm). Another thing to consider is that the 70-300mm is a faster than the 18-250mm (5.6 vs 6.3 at the long end), so even if it's par on IQ you have other advantages having the zoom.
Finally, I've found that the difference between 200mm and 300mm isnt very significant (I mean for it to be a dealbreaker-obviously it still is nice), which makes me kind of wish I got a beercan. But those run for like $230 on eBay now, so I guess its okay. But I'd still pick it up if it's on craigslist or eBay for a decent deal.
Oh, one more thing: if you're looking for an external flash, I was given an old Minolta 3500xi flash, which only fires full blast on the Sony, but it's kinda fun messing around with (you can adjust the brightess manually using flash compensation and/or manual apeture or shutter speed controls) Plus as far as I know it's much more powerful than a lower tier sony flashes, which makes it nice for big rooms (and for bouncing- especially since it's too bright for straight on anyway). So although I would never use it where i have to get it right the first time like a wedding, it's great where i have about 5 test shots to get the exposure for the pArticular room right. So if you see it for $20 or with some old minolta gear, you may have some fun with it (even though most shots are totally off, there are also a few times where I'm amazed)
Now, I've only done DSLRs for about a year now, so take what I say with a grain of salt. But It still may be helpful beginner to beginner.

I was wondering how the Sony 16-105 compared in price, IQ, and speed to the 18-250mm. It seems like a decent range for walk around, plus a bit of wide angle, but from what Ive hears very nice quality (some say close to the expensive 16-80), so maybe it would make a nice standard lens with the 70-300mm as a telephoto.

Last edited by mrpete; Sep 7, 2010 at 11:08 AM. Reason: typo
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 11:21 AM   #43
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Oh, and the minoltA flash is just interim until I can spend the $150 on an hvlf42am (maybe christmas). So I wouldnt go for the minolta flash unless it's dirt cheap (or free), but I still wanted to throw the suggestion out there.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 11:22 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrpete View Post
I was wondering how the Sony 16-105 compared in price, IQ, and speed to the 18-250mm. It seems like a decent range for walk around, plus a bit of wide angle, but from what Ive hears very nice quality (some say close to the expensive 16-80), so maybe it would make a nice standard lens with the 70-300mm as a telephoto.
The Sony 16-105 vignettes a lot wide open, it has some chromatic aberration at the extremes of the zoom range, and edge and corner sharpness isn't very good when wide open in the middle of its range, but it improves when stopped down.

See:

Sony 16-105mm f/3.5-5.6 DT SAL-16105 (Tested)
Sony 16-105mm f/3.5-5.6 DT
Sony - AF DT 16-105mm F3.5-5.6
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 12:53 PM   #45
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The Minolta 3500xi flash maybe too high a voltage for the newer cameras as well. I would check that out before buying a Minolta 3500xi flash. Here is the post I was think of:

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/so...00-camera.html

Yes, Diana is going to need a good external flash, but not the Minolta 3500xi please!

Sarah Joyce

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Old Sep 7, 2010, 1:02 PM   #46
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It seems to be fine for me, but I guess you should heed her advice. Not really worth it anyway.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 3:13 PM   #47
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The compatible Minolta flash on Ebay isn't cheap. You will be better off to get a Sony HLF F42AM around $170. I bought mine for $162 shipped including tax from cowboom.com. amazon.com is a few dollar more with no tax.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 4:15 PM   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by purpleehobbit View Post
Good to know.

Okay, so hopefully my last question for a bit. How would either of these work for portraits? Or would I have to look at a different lens for that?

(thanks again!)

Diana
The portrait question is asked a lot and honestly you can take a portrait with any lens, I've used a 300mm f2.8 lens and I've used a 10mm lens.

Now if you mean a normal range then on a crop body anything from about 50-80mm is considered good for portraits. If you want to help the background go out of focus then you want a wide aperture (small f number) and also using the longer end helps.

So my answer is any will do it, but your desired style will affect lens choice.

For example I'm doing a pre wedding shoot on Thursday and I will shoot with 2 lenses covering 24-200 mm total. (I use full frame for my main camera so the field of view with my 24mm is about the same as you using a 16mm lens.

Here is the sort of thing you would use a lens that wide for.


Then when you want to crush the background you shoot longer focal lengths. This is using 135mm (90mm for you to get the same field of view) to get rid of distractions that surround the subject.



So there is no standard, you can use pretty much any suggested lens and get good portraits. Honestly it is composition and lighting that will have the biggest impact.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 8:44 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post
Yes, Diana is going to need a good external flash, but not the Minolta 3500xi please!

Sarah Joyce
I had intended on buying the Sony F42AM

mrpete,

Thanks for your input. The 16-105 seems a bit out of my price range at the moment. As for the flash, I think it would irritate me too much if it didn't fire when I wanted it to, not to mention the worry that it had too much voltage for my new camera.

I looked a little on ebay and at the moment doesn't seem like there were good deals on either the 55-200 or the 70-300. Adorama has the 70-300 for 165 free shipping. I'm leaning towards that and the 18-55 kit lens.

I'll probably sit on it for a few days and see if I haven't changed my mind and then maybe a deal will come my way, if not, I'm not opposed to the price tag on the tamron.

I know its better that i found out about my husband's surprise because I'll get what I want... the problem is that it is extremely difficult for me to spend money on myself. Last night I was a little frustrated and almost went back to the bridge camera idea. He can get an FZ100 for 375 with his discount.
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 8:51 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark1616 View Post
The portrait question is asked a lot and honestly you can take a portrait with any lens, I've used a 300mm f2.8 lens and I've used a 10mm lens.

Now if you mean a normal range then on a crop body anything from about 50-80mm is considered good for portraits. If you want to help the background go out of focus then you want a wide aperture (small f number) and also using the longer end helps.

So my answer is any will do it, but your desired style will affect lens choice.

For example I'm doing a pre wedding shoot on Thursday and I will shoot with 2 lenses covering 24-200 mm total. (I use full frame for my main camera so the field of view with my 24mm is about the same as you using a 16mm lens.

Here is the sort of thing you would use a lens that wide for.
Then when you want to crush the background you shoot longer focal lengths. This is using 135mm (90mm for you to get the same field of view) to get rid of distractions that surround the subject.

So there is no standard, you can use pretty much any suggested lens and get good portraits. Honestly it is composition and lighting that will have the biggest impact.
Thank you for the information and the examples. I tend to favor the blurred background look for pictures of my daughter, especially when the background is not the greatest to begin with. I've managed to get a few of them with my H5 by sitting several feet away from her and zooming all the way in. I was kind of hoping this trick would work with something like the sony 55-200 or the tamron 70-300.
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