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09-04-2007, 08:49 PM   #1
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Lens Suggestion for Wedding/Portraits?

I'm still very new to DSLR and photography in general. I have a K100D with the kit 18-55mm lens and the 50-200mm lens. I'm going to a friend's wedding in October and was wondering what is the best lens for the price for shooting indoors and portraits? I'm on a tight budget so anything around the $150 and less range would work.

I found this SMCP-FA J 28-80mm lens at BHPhoto. Is this lens any good?

Link: 28-80mm

Your suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.

09-04-2007, 09:00 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by synnyster Quote
I found this SMCP-FA J 28-80mm lens at BHPhoto. Is this lens any good?

The 'J' in the name actually stands for 'Junk'.

If I were you I would hunt for a 50/1.4, preferably an auto focus FA version, but if you practice with manual focusing the A version could work as well. If you hunt hard enough you should be able to find one for around $150. (Maybe.)

Really convenient and good quality wedding lenses are the 28-70(ish)/2.8 lenses, and both Sigma and Tamron (as well as Pentax) make excellent optics in that range. I think they are more than $150 though.
09-04-2007, 09:55 PM   #3
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Smc A 50 1.4

Hi!

I have this lens if you are interested.

Thanks

tasha
09-04-2007, 11:30 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by synnyster Quote
I have a K100D with the kit 18-55mm lens and the 50-200mm lens. I'm going to a friend's wedding in October and was wondering what is the best lens for the price for shooting indoors and portraits? I'm on a tight budget so anything around the $150 and less range would work.
er- how about not spending any money?

The 18-55 zoom probably will do about 80% - because it has the coverage of equivalent 27-82.5mm which is great for group shots at the wider angles (probably do lots of those), and 1/2 length to 1/3 head and shoulders "portrait" shots at the longer end.

The "classic" portrait length is between 75-110mm with the long end of the 18-55 kit lens at 82.5mm (equiv) you kind of have that covered - you may have to change to the 50-200 zoom for tighter shots - that's probably not that necessary - but you also already have that - and it is only a lens change, so take it with you anyway....

It's probably better to get more in the photo and crop later for tighter shots than to find one's lens too narrow and not be able to get everyone/thing in.

Although the 50 f/1.4 might be tempting - since that's 75mm equivalent and has very big aperture for lower light work -
However, the whole point of the K100D is its outstanding performance at higher ISO sensitivities, PLUS the Shake Reduction - so unless you expect to shoot in extreme dark condtions (at a wedding?) then again it's nice but not really necessary - especially if you really are on a tight budget.....

Hope that saves you some money.

09-05-2007, 05:46 AM   #5
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You have all you need . Why the 28-80 J lens? It has the same speed of you kit lens, it has less resolution...

If really do you want to buy yourself something new for the event, look for a F or FA 50/1,4 or, even better, a good flash.
09-05-2007, 09:22 AM   #6
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Is the event outdoors? indoors? or both? Day? Night?

If it's all outdoors and during the day, the kit lens will work as your all around.

QuoteOriginally posted by UnknownVT Quote
Although the 50 f/1.4 might be tempting - since that's 75mm equivalent and has very big aperture for lower light work -
However, the whole point of the K100D is its outstanding performance at higher ISO sensitivities, PLUS the Shake Reduction - so unless you expect to shoot in extreme dark condtions (at a wedding?) then again it's nice but not really necessary - especially if you really are on a tight budget.....
Recall that the kit lens is not a fast lens by any means. 55mm on the kit lens is f/5.6, is 4 stops slower than 50mm at f/1.4. What could be taken at 1/100th of the second with the f/1.4 at max iso can only be shot at roughly 1/8. EEEP! If the subject is moving, SR won't do anything to help you either. As a result, you'll be limited to very high ISOs and be forced to used the wider end of the kit lens if you plan to shoot ambient. I believe it can get to 33mm or so and still be at f/4.

If you're willing to use the flash, still stick with higher ISOs indoor (as the flash will have more range and the ambient lightning will show up better) and you should be able to freeze just about any scene.

Call it a plug if you want, but in the "Post your photos!" sections, I have some pictures that I shot with my 50mm f/1.4 at a wedding.
09-05-2007, 09:43 AM   #7
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The event will be indoors. But I also want a good lens for low light as well. I guess I'm also look for a good all purpose lens.
09-05-2007, 09:55 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by synnyster Quote
The event will be indoors. But I also want a good lens for low light as well. I guess I'm also look for a good all purpose lens.
On a $150 budget, you're not going to get much in the new market. For a <$250 budget, I say you can choose from 2 of the following, but not all 3. Except the Large Aperture + Zoom combo doesn't exist

- Decent-Good Image Quality (Colors, resolution, sharpness, etc)
- Large Aperture (Low Light, Narrow Depth of Field)
- Ability to zoom (More "all purpose")

09-05-2007, 10:02 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by AVANT Quote
Recall that the kit lens is not a fast lens by any means. 55mm on the kit lens is f/5.6, is 4 stops slower than 50mm at f/1.4. What could be taken at 1/100th of the second with the f/1.4 at max iso can only be shot at roughly 1/8. EEEP! If the subject is moving, SR won't do anything to help you either. As a result, you'll be limited to very high ISOs and be forced to used the wider end of the kit lens if you plan to shoot ambient.
Point well taken -
BUT the poster does have the 50-200 lens and changing to that lens to cover the longer focal lengths gains over a full stop on the 18-55 - which helps a bit.

Like I said the 50 f/1.4 is desirable - but is it truly necessary?

If the situation is really dark - then flash may help mitigate some of the problem.
09-05-2007, 10:23 AM   #10
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I'm willing to double my budget for some quality stuff. I've read really good things about the 16-45mm. What do you guys think about that?
09-05-2007, 10:30 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by synnyster Quote
I'm willing to double my budget for some quality stuff. I've read really good things about the 16-45mm. What do you guys think about that?
My vote is still for a fast 50, the flash is a good idea too. You don't need to double the budget for either one of those. The 16-45 doesn't offer quality head-and-shoulders above the lens you already own, not to mention it is a big overlap.
09-05-2007, 10:37 AM   #12
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Going a little off topic now, but would it make sense to get the 50mm and then later get a super wide angle or would the the 16-45mm do well for wide angle?
09-05-2007, 11:18 AM   #13
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synnyster,

I would not get hung up on the low light fast glass lense for the wedding. Carpents is right. The 50 A 1.4 or the 1.7 is the best for your budget. However, you may not have enough time to practice out all the kinks that go along with fast manual focus/VERY short depth of field at wide aperatures. My wife and I did our first wedding two weekends ago. I've got the SMC A 1.7, and Super Taks 50 f1.4, 105 f2.8, 135 f3.5, and a Suntar 135 f2.8 that take fabulous pictures in low light. "But", my wife shot with the K10 and Tamron 28-75 f2.8 with Sigma EF 500 DG super while I canvased with my K100 with the 18-55 kit and Tamron 70-300 on a tripod during the ceremony (flashless). I use an old Quantarray 9550 (dual light strobe unit) in manual that gives me superb results. Why you ask? We were shooting a wedding and did not have the time or the patience to worry about the perfect focus or about the high ISO noise or about the right lighting. Too many things can go wrong in those situations to ruin the shoot. Our friends as well as clients aren't concerned with the artistic side of dof and natural light. They want the photo's to remember the event. I humbly suggest that the two lenses you own are very sufficient and agree that the flash is the best way to spend your money. A decent tripod for aroungd 70 bucks would help with the 50-200 in low light. Promaster (Promaster) has come out with a resonably price 2 light strobe that looks just like my Quantarray 9550. If I'd known about it 3 months ago I wouldn't have bought the DG Super.
The beauty af a dual light strobe is that in the reception hall or any room with a light ceiling less than 20ft high you can bounce the head while still getting the forward flash from the secondary.
Great results....... here's two:

This first one is with the Tamron 70-300 from the back row. Slick tripod. My wife fired the flash on her K10 just as my 2 sec timer fired. That resulted in a very cool lighting effect on his face. The others were just as good less highlight.



This second one is at the reception with the dual flash Quantarray. K100 wt 18-55. Not an award winner, but a good example of the dual flash lighting.



As always, I humbly hope this helps.

Chuck
09-05-2007, 03:58 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by UnknownVT Quote
Point well taken -
BUT the poster does have the 50-200 lens and changing to that lens to cover the longer focal lengths gains over a full stop on the 18-55 - which helps a bit.

Like I said the 50 f/1.4 is desirable - but is it truly necessary?

If the situation is really dark - then flash may help mitigate some of the problem.
I have no idea if the 50 1.4 is "necessary" as I'm not going to be the photographer and don't know much about the scenery there.

I'm not saying he can't shoot with the kit, I'm telling him to be consciously aware of it's low light limitation. I even suggested using the flash.

Honestly speaking, unless one is obsessing over the pictures (such as the wedding photog), one won't likely change lens. It's too much bulk and limits you from having fun doing other things at the reception. I'd have to have to worry about a camera bag on top of my camera + installed lens. Just my take...

With that said, the FA50 is still a big bang for the buck though in terms of image quality. Although I wouldn't consider it a lazy man's lens either because it does require you to move around a lot more and be conscious about your depth of field when shooting with it.

If the sole purpose was to shoot this event, I would be against it as it's too much money to go to someone else's event. If the purpose is to get a good lens that would work in the situation and can also keep for a while to do other photography, then I'd say definitely.

Last edited by AVANT; 09-05-2007 at 04:07 PM.
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