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03-30-2012, 09:29 PM   #1
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struggling with zoom 50-135mm and prime 200mm

Hi all:

I currently have zoom 12-24mm, prime 35mm and prime 55mm lense. I want to buy another telephoto lense to shoot my daughter's indoor dancing performance. I have two lense in my mind now: zoom 50-135 f2.8 and prime 200mm f2.8. But I can't make up my mind which one I should get. Can someone give some advise?


Thanks,

03-30-2012, 09:35 PM   #2
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How close can you get? What sort of dance performance? Will you want to use the telephoto for anything else?
03-30-2012, 09:46 PM   #3
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If you're planning on doing alot of indoor shooting then I'd highly recommend the 50-135.
Primes are great(there's no denying that) but you just can't beat the versatility of a good zoom indoors.
03-30-2012, 10:41 PM   #4
Brooke Meyer
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If you are back about 70 feet, maybe be 20 rows of seating and the orchestra pit, 50 mm will let you cover the entire stage and 135 will let you shoot a single dancer. I shoot performance with two K-5s, a 50-135 hand held and a 100-300/ Sigma tripod mounted with a loose ball head. Most of the time, I'm at f4, 1/320 and ISO 3200

Here's what 50 and 135 look like from the rear of the theater:

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03-30-2012, 11:10 PM   #5
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Since you have the 55 prime I would say you might even want to look at one of the sigma 70-200mm 2.8 I know that these sorts of events you want quiet AF so the HSM on this fits the bill. (both fast and almost silent) IQ is fantastic. It will give you the reach on the long end in bigger theaters and the wider stuff is covered by your other lenses.

Just my two bobs worth.
03-31-2012, 12:37 AM   #6
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I use my 50-135 for high school drama productions and find it ideal. I do the dress rehearsal shooting so I do have the advantage of moving around anywhere, but it is still long enough from the back of the auditorium. Before getting the DA* 50-135 I used my manual Takumar 135 from the back of the auditorium during a live performance of a musical to fill in what I missed or messed up on during dress rehearsal. If your auditorium is really big or you will shoot from a balcony, then you might wish for the 200mm f/2.8.
03-31-2012, 12:39 AM   #7
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Original Poster

She performs Ballet on the stage. The distance is sometimes farand sometimes is closer, it all depends on the seat they assigned to me. Yes I want to use it for other purpose like traveling.My point is, I already got a Prime 55mm lens. Does it make sense to get a lens 50-135?or prime 200 is a good mix with my other existing lenses?

Thanks
03-31-2012, 07:59 AM   #8
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What is the worst case for seating? If you are in the first 10 rows the 200mm will be too long, but you can get away with the 55mm. If there is no chance, due to auditorium size, of being more than 20 rows back you wouldn't the 200mm. But it sounds like this is probably a once a year event so you need to weigh this lens need with what you will do the rest of the year.

03-31-2012, 09:38 AM   #9
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Listen to Brooke .... you have been told by a pro who shoots stage, stage and more stage, so don't argue just go and get the 50-135 !

BTW you might also want to consider an extra US$100+ for the 35/2.4 just in case they seat you any closer than a 50mm can cover !
03-31-2012, 12:20 PM   #10
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I was going to suggest a cheap alternative. A member here is selling an A-type Vivitar Series 1 70-210/2.8 for US$30 plus shipping. This would at least be a good cheap test-bed to determine what focal lengths work best in your situation. But I thought about that a bit, and decided to buy it myself. Sorry.
03-31-2012, 12:33 PM   #11
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The 50-135 is just a no brainer here ! You could opt for the Tokina version as a cheaper alternative though.
03-31-2012, 01:35 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
The 50-135 is just a no brainer here ! You could opt for the Tokina version as a cheaper alternative though.
I don't think the Tokina is available for Pentax.
03-31-2012, 02:54 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
I don't think the Tokina is available for Pentax.
Yes it seems you are correct. they used too. Ouch ! Talk about wrong, that just sucks.
I have read they are still available in shangai lol
Thats quite infuriating actualy.
03-31-2012, 03:58 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
The 50-135 is just a no brainer here ! You could opt for the Tokina version as a cheaper alternative though.
QuoteOriginally posted by westmill Quote
Yes it seems you are correct. they used too. Ouch ! Talk about wrong, that just sucks.
I have read they are still available in shangai lol
Thats quite infuriating actualy.
Are you sure you're a Pentax user?
Only a Canikon user would make such a glaring oversight.
There is absolutely no Tokina 50-135mm in Pentax mount in Shanghai or any other place on this planet.
Tokina never made such a lens for Pentax... ever.
03-31-2012, 07:36 PM   #15
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50-135

I have a Sigma 50-150 and find the range quite nice for my kids' dance recitals. Having the zoom gives you the flexibility to get the whole stage as well as close ups. The 200mm may be too long. With the 50-135, if it doesn't have the reach you want you can crop later.
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