Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
09-18-2011, 02:40 PM   #1
Pentaxian
Mareket's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Chester
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 719
Pentax glass fast enough for weddings?

Basically I'm trying to gear myself up for wedding photography, I have a DA* 50-135 f/2.8, a DA 15 f/4 Limited and a DA-L 35 f/2.4, all of which I absolutely adore. But wedding photography seems to be pretty low light, and I'm thinking of going down the journalism style path...

So basically, are these lenses fast enough for that kind of wedding work? Obviously I wouldn't use the 50-135 for that, but the 15 f/4 is pushing it, and I'm worried whether or not I could get images in at around say, ISO 1600 later on in the day. Would f/2.8 be fast enough for weddings? I could supplement it with an FA 50 f/1.4, keep that on one K-5, have another K-5 (I've learnt I need a second body anyway) with the 50-135 for more difficult shots during the ceremony and then I was thinking of getting an X100 to crack out when I want to be really inconspicuous and get my journalist on. Or just have my K-5 with the FA 50 or DA-L 35 and the X100 before things get too formal, then combine the 50-135 and X100 during the ceremony? Is that a good idea?

I need excellent quality and durability mind, so whilst the Sigma offerings look promising, from what I've heard I'd much rather go with slower Pentax glass.

---Good wedding set-up?---
K-5 + FA 50 f/1.4 / DA-L 35 f/2.4
K-5 + DA* 50-135 f/2.8 / DA 15 f/4
Fujifilm X100 21mm f/2
Total cost over what I already have: ~2000

09-18-2011, 02:48 PM   #2
Administrator
Site Webmaster
Adam's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Arizona
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 43,128
With the K-5 you should be kosher with that setup. (you can't get zooms faster than F2.8 anyway)

One lens I'd recommend is the sigma 85mm F1.4- it's an excellent portrait lens with nice bokeh:
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM Lens For Pentax Digital SLR 320109

Another good idea for weddings it to have two bodies- one with a wide-angle-to-normal zoom (i.e. 16-50) and one with a tele zoom (70-200mm or 50-135) or tele lens (85mm) for portraits and close-ups.

Adam
PentaxForums.com Webmaster (Site Usage Guide | Site Help | My Photography)



PentaxForums.com's high server and development costs are user-supported. You can help cover those costs by donating. Or, buy your photo gear from our affiliates, Adorama, B&H Photo, or Topaz Labs, and get FREE Marketplace access - click here to see how! Trusted Pentax retailers:

09-18-2011, 02:51 PM   #3
Veteran Member
SlickYamaha's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Bel Air MD
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 840
QuoteOriginally posted by Mareket Quote
Obviously I wouldn't use the 50-135 for that,
If you mean you wouldnt use the 50-135 for weddings, why not? I think that would probably be one of the first lenses I would grab. Sure it wouldnt work magic on the dance floor, but I would think the ability to creep around the back and take photos during the wedding, toasts, etc would make it my first choice. I take alot of photos at my church's concerts, and thats the only lens I bring anymore. I can still get over peoples heads, and not have to worry about blocking half a table to get a shot.
Im sure weddings are a whole different ballpark, but... just my $.02
09-18-2011, 03:04 PM   #4
Pentaxian
Wheatfield's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: The wheatfields of Canada
Posts: 10,157
Most pros these days use zoom lenses exclusively, and they don't get faster than f/2.8 from any manufacturer.
Other than SDM problems, you don't need to worry about Pentax lenses being good enough for wedding work, but as a somewhat retired wedding photographer I would be somewhat worried about the camera bodies, especially the K5, being reliable enough for weddings.
If you intend to shoot professionally with Pentax, you will want multiple back up camera bodies, probably 3 or 4 should be enough.

09-18-2011, 03:05 PM   #5
Veteran Member
SlickYamaha's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Bel Air MD
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 840
QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
If you intend to shoot professionally with Pentax, you will want multiple back up camera bodies, probably 3 or 4 should be enough.
Uh oh, someone having some issues with pentax right now?
09-18-2011, 03:27 PM   #6
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2010
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 1,545
Uh, you actually should be fine with two bodies... Unless, you were going to be shooting a wedding every weekend or something like that. You also may want to add a flash to your list.
09-18-2011, 03:47 PM   #7
Veteran Member
DaveHolmes's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Yorkshire
Posts: 1,501
I did my first wedding today...

Kit list used was... K-x... Tamron-17-50mm, 2.8... Pentax FA50mm-2.8... Hoya-135mm,2.8 (which excelled for outdoor candids wanted by the bride) and YN560 (odd shot only)
Been going through the shots for the last 5 hours and I'm still nowhere near finishing...

2.8 is fast enough in my opinion... But speed of the lenses was the last thing on my mind for most of the day... Had to work faster than I normally like (and wthout nicotine) and friends and family of the couple don't seem to realize how little time there is... I remained polite throughout but I had to be fairly assertive a couple of times and ask folk to 'kindly remove themselves' from the shot...
A second (even a 3rd) camera body would have been really useful... Totally see why it's recommended!

The Tamron 17-50mm 2.8 got the most use followed by the 135mm-2.8... The FA50mm-1.4 got some use in the brides room while her hair was being 'done'...
09-18-2011, 04:53 PM   #8
Site Supporter
jatrax's Avatar

Join Date: May 2010
Location: Oregon
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 10,770
Your glass is fast enough although I think you need a 70-200 f/2.8 for balcony shots. And you have nothing wide except the 15mm which I think is too limiting. You need a DA*16-50 f/2.8 or the equivalent from Sigma or Tamron. You will end up very close a lot of times especially at the reception and not be able to get far enough back to cover the shot because of all the people and tables. I would have 2 bodies with the 16-50 on one and the 50-135 or the 70-200 on the other depending on the size of the space. 85mm f/1.4 or similar for portraits but really weddings are zoom country, things move very quickly and you do not get any do-overs.


More important I believe is your lighting. While some venues do not permit flash during the ceremony some do. And if they do you need to use it. Besides which after the ceremony you will likely be doing group shots and portraits in the church and you really really need good lighting for that. A couple of soft boxes or at least strobes on stands and wireless control.

Most important is communication and organization. You need to know what is going to happen and be ready 1 or 2 steps ahead to be in the correct position. Scout the venue early if at all possible. Discuss with the minister or official performing the service to make sure you know what is going on and what they allow you to do. They will usually have done lots of weddings and can point out good perches in the buildings that you might not be aware of.

09-18-2011, 05:06 PM   #9
Ash
Community Manager
Loyal Site Supporter
Ash's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Toowoomba, Queensland
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 22,695
To me it's a decent starting point, definitely including the 50-135. However for wider angle shots, you'd be better off with a zoom like the DA* 16-50 or Tamron 17-50. Primes are great and faster, but they are best for staged portraiture where you control the perspective and subject-to-lens distance. Otherwise, primes will be quite limiting. Nevertheless, you'll need two bodies and on the second body, you may have to swap between the 15 and 35 to get the wider angle shots you need.
09-18-2011, 05:23 PM   #10
Veteran Member
Smeggypants's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 1,536
QuoteOriginally posted by SlickYamaha Quote
Uh oh, someone having some issues right now?
Fixed it for ya



I've only done one wedding but I've done plenty of shoots where there's gatherings of people. TWO bodies is essential, you'll miss far too many magic moments messing around changing lenses. And make sure the bodies are identical too. You need to work them on autopilot and not worry about which mdoel you are using. I thought I could get away with a K-5 and K20D until I did a shoot. I ended up selling the K20D and getting a second K-5

jatrax's advice is good .... "I would have 2 bodies with the 16-50 on one and the 50-135 or the 70-200 on the other depending on the size of the space"

I'd also take along a nice fast prime for some shallow DOF shots of wedding paraphanalia ... rings, cake decorations, table labels, tiaras, etc,etc
09-18-2011, 06:21 PM   #11
Senior Member




Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 219
You have a pretty similar kit for weddings as myself. I shot a wedding YESTERDAY actually, with one K5 + the 16-50mm, 50-135mm, 31mm 1.8, 15mm f4, and the 70mm 2.4, and an X100. Yes the glass is fast enough. I got my best shots with the 31mm 1.8. If I had two bodies I'd do the whole thing with primes. I just find them so much more satisfying in terms of handling and image quality... The x100 was amazing and a clutch in imitate situations. People couldn't hear a thing and the images it produced in every kind of light from backlit glory to NO-LIGHT dance floor, were stunning. I will buy every pro X camera from now on, seriously...

But honestly I gotta say it's not the glass that makes me want something more at a wedding. It's the viewfinder... I need to be able to manually focus more reliably! I'm looking at a D700, a 5D classic, or whatever Nikon has coming... Pentax either has to make full frame a reality or I'm stepping up to a system that takes the needs of pros seriously. I love the APS-C glass that Pentax makes and I do think the image quality is on-par or better than that of full frame Canikons, but I know for a fact that composing with a full frame camera (or my MZ-S for that matter) is SO MUCH EASIER!

Anyways ditch your 35 for the 31 and go out and kick some ass. Some pros only work with 2.8 zooms anyway so you'll be fine.
09-18-2011, 06:21 PM   #12
Veteran Member
paperbag846's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2010
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 2,396
QuoteOriginally posted by Mareket Quote
K-5 + DA* 50-135 f/2.8 / DA 15 f/4
This.

But actually, for a wedding I think you would be better off with the DA 12-24 over the DA 15.
09-18-2011, 09:07 PM   #13
Pentaxian
Wheatfield's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: The wheatfields of Canada
Posts: 10,157
QuoteOriginally posted by SlickYamaha Quote
Uh oh, someone having some issues with pentax right now?
I've always felt that way with Pentax. Their 35mm cameras have never really inspired much confidence from me as wedding cameras.
The 6x7 was an unstoppable tank though.
With the K5, I think there are too many "issues" to have 100% faith in it from a reliability standpoint.

As a change of subject, to the OP regarding lenses, In a 35 year career of wedding photography, I never actually shot an entire wedding with zooms. I've only used zooms a couple of at weddings, each time taking it off in place of primes, which I prefer.
Once, I tried a Tokina 35-105, which I felt, on the F3, should be the ideal wedding lens.
It wasn't, apparently, and I sold it quite quickly.
Another time, I tried using the 28-70 f/4 with a MZ-5. That lasted until after the processional, and I turfed it.
I just don't like the things all that much.
With wedding photography, position is very important, and I've found that by positioning myself in the right places at the right times, I can do the job with less strain using prime lenses.
The last few weddings I've shot (I think I've done 3 in as many years since I retired from doing them) have been done with the 15LTD, 21LTD, 31LTD, 77LTD, and the A*85/1.4.
09-18-2011, 09:15 PM   #14
Ash
Community Manager
Loyal Site Supporter
Ash's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Toowoomba, Queensland
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 22,695
Goes to show we have wedding shooters with quite different styles and lens choices.
I'd love to shoot entirely prime, but I'd be sure to miss important moments because I couldn't get the reach I wanted when I wanted it.

So I resort to zooms for the 'fast-paced' segments, and primes for posed portraits. I always have three zooms: Tamron 28-75 and Tamron 70-200 on each camera, then the DA 12-24 on standby for venue and large group shots. Then I keep a number of primes for the staged shots, including all the FA limiteds.

Indeed, real estate is the key to getting the right results as Wheatfield says.
09-19-2011, 12:50 AM   #15
Pentaxian
Mareket's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Chester
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 719
Original Poster
Well that's encouraging then. It'd be nice to have professional equivalents of Canon's 50 and 85mm f/1.2 lenses, but I'm happy with my Pentax glass as is.

I'll go for the 16-50 and the 50 1.4 then, with a second K-5, and then consider getting the X100 when I can afford it. I've got an AF540 and a YN560 with two umbrellas and lighting stands. If I grab two spare batteries (one for each K-5) will that be a good set of reliable kit?

And what specific issues with the K-5 are we talking about here? I've heard of the mirror flop issue with fully charged batteries, and the sensor stains. What else is there? I've got a very recent copy, so I'm hoping it might be ok.

An FF sized viewfinder would be lovely though :/
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
ceremony, da-l, f/2.8, f/4, fa, glass, k-5, k-mount, pentax lens, photography, slr lens, wedding, x100
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
For Sale - Sold: A 50mm f/1.2 *fast glass* (Worldwide) Ubuntu_user Sold Items 10 07-01-2011 11:39 AM
Fast Glass? trishytee Photographic Technique 13 01-13-2009 07:28 PM
Fast, long glass recommendation needed colonialgirl Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11 04-01-2008 09:21 AM
Need Help: Looking for long, fast glass Tbear Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11 09-05-2007 05:23 AM
Sigmas' Fast, Best Glass is MIA KennJ Pentax SLR Lens Discussion 11 06-21-2007 03:08 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:14 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top