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05-25-2011, 07:34 AM   #1
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Thinking about a new lens, would love some input.

I own a bunch of lenses as you can see in my sig, but I'm feeling the need for a new one for an event next weekend.

I have my daughter's (and wife's for that matter) dance recital next weekend. Last year, I used my cheapie Sigma 28-80 f3.5-5.6 for the show. Used some low light tricks I learned from here to help me get decent pictures. I was reasonably pleased with the results and the dance studio actually made a slideshow out of my photos that they use at recruitment drives. So I guess I did pretty good.

Recently, I picked up a Vivitar 28-200 manual lens for super cheap in the MP that I thought I would use for the show, but, in testing out the lens I'm finding the focusing to be a bit finicky. Maybe if I had a film focusing screen in my K-x, I'd have less trouble. Though, I rarely have focusing issues using any of my manual primes.

I haven't been to the venue yet, but I'll be in the 2nd row, probably 10-15 feet from the stage.

Trying to keep the cost under $500. I was thinking the Tamaron 28-75 f2.8. Sharp, fast and I think I should be able to get full stage and also be able to zoom in if needed.

Or should I be thinking something else? Or maybe just stick with what I have?

I'd love to hear what you all think.

Thanks.

Chris

05-25-2011, 07:58 AM   #2
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LBA rearing it's face here...

Really though, the Tamron 28-75 would be a great lens for you. That f/2.8 aperture will really do you well.
05-25-2011, 08:17 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ubuntu_user Quote
LBA rearing it's face here...

Really though, the Tamron 28-75 would be a great lens for you. That f/2.8 aperture will really do you well.
I would agree. Go for a fast lens for indoor dance shots. As long as you think 75mm won't be too short.
05-25-2011, 08:28 AM   #4
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Ubuntu - That's what I'm thinking. My head is spinning from some of the research I've been doing.

reeftool - I have had thoughts that 75 could be too short, but I figured, if I can't zoom in enough, I can crop in PP. It just tough to find a really sharp, fast lens that can get me the wide-ish angle and be able to zoom in close too that doesn't cost a fortune.

05-25-2011, 08:29 AM   #5
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Tamron 28-75 is the best zoom under 1000 I have used. I also like the focal range (unlike a lot of people).

At 75mm, f3.2, it's killer!
05-25-2011, 08:52 AM   #6
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Agree with Uu and reeftool, also echo reeftool's query about 75 being too short. I own the Tammy 28-75 lens and really really really like it but not sure it will reach far enough for you. I recently used my K-x and the SMC 135mm f/2.5 to shoot an outdoor bluegrass gig and was highly impressed with the shots I got, I was shooting at ISO 1600 and 3200 with the lens both wide open and slightly stopped down. Of course a music concert is less mobil than a dance recital, focus will be a bit of a problem, but that lens in particular is an easy focuser, a bit of practice and you should have no problem. I haven't posted the concert shots on my smugmug site yet, and I'm at work so don't have access to them.
Here a couple of other shots with the lens all the shots were taken with a K10D

intentionally slowed the shutter speed on this one to catch the stick blur (1/80 sec)


faster shutter here to catch facial expression (1/320 sec)


Also does a good job with architecture/landscape (K10D again)


and my favorite SMC 135mm f/2.5 shot


NaCl(I personally think that it's one of the best "K"s ever made)H2O
05-25-2011, 09:28 AM   #7
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She will be at least 18' from you. A 75mm lens at 18' will frame a scene about 6'wide - that sounds reasonable to me.... I'd like a little tighter but that's me.

75:24 ~ 18:6
05-25-2011, 11:25 AM   #8
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NaClH2O - I have a Takumar (Bayonet) 135 that I do like, but I need the zoom to get the full stage as well as zooming in.

newarts - I did consider the Pentax 18-135. Couldn't decide from what I've read if it'd be faster/sharper than what I have currently.

05-25-2011, 11:42 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by chrisb3 Quote
NaClH2O - I have a Takumar (Bayonet) 135 that I do like, but I need the zoom to get the full stage as well as zooming in.
Is the 55-300 too slow? There is always the Pentax A 70-210 f/4, not real fast but with the high ISO capability of the K-x it should be doable. Then again, like you said, you can always crop the 28-75 tammy. And it is a great lens.

NaCl(no matter what you get, it's great justification for a new lens)H2O
05-25-2011, 11:54 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Is the 55-300 too slow? There is always the Pentax A 70-210 f/4, not real fast but with the high ISO capability of the K-x it should be doable. Then again, like you said, you can always crop the 28-75 tammy. And it is a great lens.

NaCl(no matter what you get, it's great justification for a new lens)H2O
The 55-300 is a bit slow. Hunts a some in low light too or at least mine does. I'd also be concerned that 55 isn't wide enough on the wide end to get the whole stage in. Based off of last year's recital, 28 was just wide enough (I was in the 3rd row last year).
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