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12-09-2008, 09:06 AM   #1
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Lens Purchase Advice

I am doing a bit of thinking about my next lens (early next year purchase??), and would appreciate some insight...

I shoot a fair amount in gyms / auditoriums with low light, and have found that the FA 50 f/1.4 does great - no flash, ISO 400, aperture of 2.4 to 2.8. For basketball on the 50mm, a shutter speed of 125 seems to work well, Tae Kwon Do activities, a shutter speed of 180 to 250. Given one cannot just get up and move closer or farther away at these events, I would like some additional lens options.

The DA* 50-135 F/2.8 or the Tamron 70-200 F/2.8 seem like good options, but I wonder if I will still run into speed/aperture limitations or having to go to an ISO 1600 with grainy pics?. Additonal prime lenses such as the Sigma 30mm F/1.4 or the Pentax 77 MM LTD might be options, but I don't know if that is moving me much closer or further away.

Camera wise, I have both a K10D and a K100D.

Thoughts?

12-09-2008, 09:47 AM   #2
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Get the 77mm Limited, with aperture 1,8 it would be fast enough, the lens is also much sharper than the one you have now.
12-09-2008, 12:45 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by krs Quote
I shoot a fair amount in gyms / auditoriums with low light, and have found that the FA 50 f/1.4 does great - no flash, ISO 400, aperture of 2.4 to 2.8.
...
The DA* 50-135 F/2.8 or the Tamron 70-200 F/2.8 seem like good options, but I wonder if I will still run into speed/aperture limitations or having to go to an ISO 1600 with grainy pics?
Well, if you've been using f/2.8 and ISO 400 with no problems on the FA50, what makes you think it will be more problematic with the 50-135 or 70-200? The shutter speeds you are talking about are more than fast enough that camera shake shouldn't be a huge problem, so the longer focal length is kind of a non-issue.

I could see the FA77 being really wonderful for certain types of events, where you can be relatively close to the sidelines and that focal length will still more or less isolate someone at mid-court. But it's not going to be enough for closeups unless they happen to be right in front of you. If you're feeling the 50 isn't nearly long enough, I doubt the 77 would be that much better in this respect. I think the 50-135 would be pretty ideal, although as some who is both a cheapskate and allergic to big lenses, I'm happy with my M100/2.8.

On the other hand, if you're looking to capture groupings of people, the 50 is probably already too long at times, which I assume is hy you're thinking about the 30?
12-09-2008, 02:25 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Well, if you've been using f/2.8 and ISO 400 with no problems on the FA50, what makes you think it will be more problematic with the 50-135 or 70-200? The shutter speeds you are talking about are more than fast enough that camera shake shouldn't be a huge problem, so the longer focal length is kind of a non-issue.

I could see the FA77 being really wonderful for certain types of events, where you can be relatively close to the sidelines and that focal length will still more or less isolate someone at mid-court. But it's not going to be enough for closeups unless they happen to be right in front of you. If you're feeling the 50 isn't nearly long enough, I doubt the 77 would be that much better in this respect. I think the 50-135 would be pretty ideal, although as some who is both a cheapskate and allergic to big lenses, I'm happy with my M100/2.8.

On the other hand, if you're looking to capture groupings of people, the 50 is probably already too long at times, which I assume is hy you're thinking about the 30?
Many of my shots with the 50mm have been at 2.8 or larger (2.4, and in some cases, 2.0 or even 1.4). With the focal length increasing in the case of the 50-135mm, the shutter speed would need to go up as well to keep things reasonably crisp. This could be mitigated some with increased ISO, but I am concerned that sometimes the 50-135 f/2.8 if it just will not be able to do the job.

I agree with your observation that 77mm would not be much better in terms of close-ups, and as you indicate, sometimes 50mm is a bit too close, and therefore the thought on the 30mm, 28 mm, or perhaps the DA*16-50.

I do like the idea of a zoom to frame the picture I want, and not switching lenses or cameras as much!

12-09-2008, 07:55 PM   #5
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Tamron 28-75 f/2.8
12-09-2008, 08:00 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
Tamron 28-75 f/2.8
I was just looking at this lens with some interest...

Thoughts behind this recommendation?
12-09-2008, 08:17 PM   #7
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You need 300/4, or 2.8 if you have the deep pocket, for auditorium to get close enough.

Gym is another occasion that you need a wide and a portrait. So 15mm, 20mm is the way to go considering 1.5 cropping. Portrait lens can go from 55mm to 77mm or even 100mm / 120mm depends on how tight you want the photo be.

I can think of a fast zoom lens can meet the condition of both gym and auditorium. A few primes will work better.
12-09-2008, 09:49 PM   #8
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What about the Sigma 50-150 f/2.8 II EX DC APO Pentax Mount.?? I can get one of those for 700.oo new and it's suppose to be as good as the DA* 50-135. Maybe better in focus speed.

12-10-2008, 06:12 AM   #9
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I will take a look at these suggestions - thanks!
12-10-2008, 09:25 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by krs Quote
Many of my shots with the 50mm have been at 2.8 or larger (2.4, and in some cases, 2.0 or even 1.4).
Gotcha. In your initial post you said you were using at 2.4-2.8, so i assumed you weren't taking advantage of the f/2 or f/1.4 much.

QuoteQuote:
With the focal length increasing in the case of the 50-135mm, the shutter speed would need to go up as well to keep things reasonably crisp.
In your original post you mentioned shutter speeds of 1/125. With SR, that should be fine for the 50-135.

Frankly, I think the 50-135 is the way to go, and you shouldn't be afraid of upping the ISO. Sure, you lose a little bit of quality, but it's par for the course in low light photography.
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