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12-27-2007, 04:27 PM   #1
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Could you reccomend a lens?

Hi all I have a K100D Super with the following lenses:
smc da 18-55 kit lens
smc f 1:4-5.6 35-80mm
smc f 1:4.5-5.6 100-300mm
I am wanting a reccomendation for a good lens to use inside our house in lower light situations for pics of my children that wouldn't require the use of flash.
I have heard that a 50 prime would be good but wondered what you all thought? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Also if you have a place you would reccomend buying from please let me know that too. I have been looking at B&H so far.
Thanks so much
Nichole

12-27-2007, 04:38 PM   #2
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Hi Nichole, Just moved your thread to the DSLR lens discussion section... ;-)

On to your question, it depends what focal length you want? Personally I use the 35/2 in the type of situations you desire.. BUT if you prefer the focal length of the 50/1.4 it is very good in those situations and cheaper at only around US$200. Both I are available at bhphoto..

I think one of those two would be a good choice, they are both good sharp lenses, nice colour and contrast, bright enough and fairly small and lightweight (which I like)... Which one is best for you will just depend on the focal length you prefer.

Pentax | Wide Angle smc P-FA 35mm f/2.0 AL Autofocus Lens

Pentax | Normal SMCP-FA 50mm f/1.4 Autofocus Lens | 20817 | B&H
12-27-2007, 04:49 PM   #3
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I agree with the recommended lenses, something longer might also be nice depending on the types of shots you're going for. A 35 could be great for wider shots, a 70 could be great for up close shots, a 50 could do both or neither depending on how you look at it. I have the 50 f/1.4, sometimes it works well for indoor shots and sometimes it doesn't. I've recently bought an external flash and it gives much more consistency to my indoor shots. Is there a reason you don't want a flash?
12-27-2007, 05:02 PM   #4
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Hi Nicolek
Besides the lenses mentioned I'd also look at the Sigma 24mm f1.8 good lens for inside work and at f1.8 quite fast. You didn't mention your budget, if you have deep pockets you also might want to look at the FA 31mm ltd. There are also several good options in the used market, pentax "28's" both A and M in both F2.0 and F2.8 varieties. The pentax A and M 35 F2.0 are also good relatively fast lenses.
Besides B&H there is Adorama, Sigma for Less, 17th St. Photo and for used lenses KEH.
I've bought lenses from all of the above and have been satisfied with the experience.

NaCl(hope that helps)H2O

12-27-2007, 05:37 PM   #5
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Thank you all so much for your help and thanks Joele for getting my post in the right spot. So I am not professional at all, just a mom wanting good pictures of her kids. I am not familar with all the terms ect yet but am assuming the focal length is how far it's going to focus. So in reguards to that how would I know what size I would want? I have just an average size house so not alot of room. And when I am doing pictures of them I usually set them in front of a window and get fairly close to them. In reguards to not wanting a flash, I just like the way natural light looks better I guess. Ok here is an example, remember I am learning, not claiming to be good so excuse all the bad stuff about the picture.
Thanks again for all the help
Nichole
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12-27-2007, 06:13 PM   #6
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For practice take your kit lens, set it to 50mm (that's zoomed almost all the way in) and take pics - that is the amount of zoom the 50mm prime will have all the time (it doesn't zoom in and out - prime = fixed focal length). If you like that focal length then the 50mm prime would be perfect. The low f-stop will give you much improved low light performance. You can then do the same thing at 35mm, 70mm (with your other lens) etc to get a feel for what its like shooting at different focal lengths.

If you want improved low light performance but don't wanna give up the ability to zoom in and out think about the DA*16-50 f2.8 - its not as fast as the 50mm prime, but it gives you a nice zoom range. It is expensive though. Sigma also makes a f2.8 zoom lens (18-50 I think) that is about half the price. It gives up some optical quality, but is still certainly better than the kit lens, especially in low light.

Another great option would be to get an external flash, point it up and bounce the light off the celing. You'll get better skin tones and such that way generally.

good luck!

Last edited by bikepilot; 12-27-2007 at 06:26 PM.
12-27-2007, 06:26 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by nicholek Quote
Thank you all so much for your help and thanks Joele for getting my post in the right spot. So I am not professional at all, just a mom wanting good pictures of her kids. I am not familar with all the terms ect yet but am assuming the focal length is how far it's going to focus. So in reguards to that how would I know what size I would want? I have just an average size house so not alot of room. And when I am doing pictures of them I usually set them in front of a window and get fairly close to them. In reguards to not wanting a flash, I just like the way natural light looks better I guess. Ok here is an example, remember I am learning, not claiming to be good so excuse all the bad stuff about the picture.
Thanks again for all the help
Nichole
nichole,
give us a break... how about posting the original shots???
12-27-2007, 06:33 PM   #8
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Don't judge flash photography based on direct flash you may be used to from a P&S. The problem with getting a fast lens to use indoors is that you don't have much depth of field control. A flash will allow you to maintain a larger depth of field. If you still want a prime, I agree with the suggestion to see which focal lengths you like best from your existing lenses and getting a prime to fit the need.

12-27-2007, 06:54 PM   #9
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Thanks guys, I appreciate all the advice and will start with the suggestions to zoom in and shoot and see what I like best. And I may look into a flash as suggested. Also Roy, I am sorry if I have offended you in some way, I didn't quite understand your comment, but those were the original shots, I did downsize them to fit on here though, so I am not sure if that's what your talking about or not? Anyways thanks so much to all for your helpful advice!
Nichole
12-27-2007, 07:28 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by nicholek Quote
Also Roy, I am sorry if I have offended you in some way, I didn't quite understand your comment, but those were the original shots, I did downsize them to fit on here though, so I am not sure if that's what your talking about or not?
I'm pretty sure it was a compliment. You said you didn't know what you were doing and you posted nice images.
12-27-2007, 07:29 PM   #11
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nichole,
my prob is the shots you posted are from taking the kids and putting them in front of the window. with the IQ of these shots then i see no problem why you would need another lens. also i see quite a bit more technique that i'd expect from a newbie. not only in the setup but also the Ev control. with no exif available no one can tell if they've been photochopped.. you've offended me in no way. my problem is when i add up what i see and what i read and 2+2 doesn't equal 4 it makes me wonder.. no offense meant or taken..
12-27-2007, 08:01 PM   #12
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Hey Roy
I guess I wasn't very clear, I was trying to show the pictures I like to take meaning how close up I like to be and the available light I had. And I thought those shots looked out of focus so I figured someone would say something to me about that is why I put in the disclaimer that I am not a professional, just a mom and new to this. I should have posted these shots too I guess to say this is how most of them look when I use my flash. And the last one is with my flash off, that's what they typically look like when I can't use the light coming thru the window. And I'm not sure about some of the terms you're using but I went back and looked in my camera at my settings and on those 2 pictures I posted before they are both done in AV mode and the first one was 1/15 F6.7 0.0EV ISO 800 28MM for whatever it's worth. And I'm not sure what efix means or I would make it available to you. Hope that clears things up for you
Thanks
Nichole
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12-27-2007, 08:17 PM   #13
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Those shots look pretty good to me. Maybe the composition etc. isn't perfect but they sure are sharp. Good family photos.
12-27-2007, 08:31 PM   #14
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Nicole one other thing you can do is provide better lighting for yourself. Add lights or rearrange lights to even out what is available.
12-27-2007, 08:53 PM   #15
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I think that your shots are great!

By exif roy is talking about the information attached to a picture file as it comes out of the camera - it contains info like the shutter speed, apature, shooting mode, camera, lens, time it was shot etc. I suspect that this was lost when the photo was re-sized. If/when you post a pic and would like comments on how to make it better and such, including the exif information will help people have the info they need to be helpful
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