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05-28-2008, 06:51 AM   #1
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Portrait & Wedding Lense Opinions

Hi All,
I want to get a feel from those of you that have experience with these lenses... Which lense, in your opinion, is the best for portraits & wedding shoots?

40mm limited pancake, 70mm pancake, FA 50mm 1.4, FA 50mm 1.7

I currently am using the Tamron 28-75 Xr Di 2.8..... I really want to get to pentax glass and would like to try using the primes....Any other thoughts are welcomed also...

Thanks!

05-28-2008, 07:03 AM   #2
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None of the above. I bought myself a Voigtlander 58mm f/1.4 and an extremely pleased with it. My next choice would be a toos up between the 50mm f/1.4 and either the 70mm or 77mm. I found the 50 to be just a wee bit short, and the 70 to be just a little long.
The Voigtlander is just right, and has 9 aperture blades, so it's rendering of out of focus areas is very much like the Limited lenses.
Overall, it is a very high quality lens. It is manual focus though, if that matters.
05-28-2008, 07:36 AM   #3
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I'd go with the 70mm pancake - compact, very good IQ, AF, and the classic 70mm portrait focal length.
05-28-2008, 07:54 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
None of the above. I bought myself a Voigtlander 58mm f/1.4 and an extremely pleased with it. My next choice would be a toos up between the 50mm f/1.4 and either the 70mm or 77mm. I found the 50 to be just a wee bit short, and the 70 to be just a little long.
The Voigtlander is just right, and has 9 aperture blades, so it's rendering of out of focus areas is very much like the Limited lenses.
Overall, it is a very high quality lens. It is manual focus though, if that matters.
While I love my Voigtlander 125, I certainly wouldn't recommend a manual focus lens for a wedding shoot. I will probably be using my tamron 28-75 for the majority of my work at the wedding I shoot in June. I do have the 35 ltd that I'll be using too, along with the DA 10-17 FE for some fun (off the ladder) group shots. I may put the 44 & 77 ltd I have to work too.

05-28-2008, 09:01 AM   #5
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Thanks so far! I have a 50mm f2.0 Manual focus that I have played with, but I really want to have the AF. With the lense opened up, the DOF is so shallow that manual focus is a real pain! A question for you La Ree.... Sometimes I feel that my tamron 28-75 yields pictures that are just not quite right... I don't know quite how to explain it... I have the pentax 28-105 lense, and the 50mm 2.0, and to me, these both yield just a little bit more pleasing image...... Any thoughts?
05-28-2008, 10:15 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Truax_photo Quote
Hi All,
I want to get a feel from those of you that have experience with these lenses... Which lense, in your opinion, is the best for portraits & wedding shoots?

40mm limited pancake, 70mm pancake, FA 50mm 1.4, FA 50mm 1.7

I currently am using the Tamron 28-75 Xr Di 2.8..... I really want to get to pentax glass and would like to try using the primes....Any other thoughts are welcomed also...

Thanks!
It really depends on the type of photographer that YOU are. The truth is that you can create spectacular portraits and wedding photos with ANY of these lenses ... including the Tamron 28-75 2.8 that you already own.

In general, from the lenses that you've already mentioned, the DA70 makes the most sense as a "portrait" lens because of reduced distortion and a good working distance. The DA40 makes more sense as a wedding candid lens because it's wide enough to get two people in the frame for quick candids.

I used to use the FA50 quite often, but now I use the DA70 and DA40 because they're sharper and less prone to CA and PF.

In practical terms, unless you're shooting 100 percent posed/formal shots at a wedding you'll have a hard time matching the flexibility of a constant-aperture zoom lens at a wedding. Candid (pre-ceremony and reception) and ceremony shots involve people who are constantly moving around, and your clients will expect you to capture those once-in-a-lifetime moments as they happen. You can't stop and change lenses most of the time without missing an important moment.

I take three DSLR bodies with me to every wedding (two K10D bodies and one DL) One body has a Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 zoom, the other two have prime lenses (usually a DA40, DA70, FA135 or a DA200).

The camera with the Sigma 24-70 is my "primary shooter," the one with the DA40 or DA70 is my "low light" shooter set to ISO 800 or 1600 by default, and the other body stays mounted to a tripod with the 135 or 200.
05-28-2008, 10:16 AM   #7
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Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 and the Pentax DA* 50-135mm f/2.8. I'd be happy shooting a wedding with that setup (and I would have been this October, but I switched to the "dark side" )

Unless you NEED the speed of the 50mm f/1.4 or 35mm f/2.0, I'd stick with the Tamron for those focal lengths. Maybe I just had a great copy?
05-28-2008, 10:25 AM   #8
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I would LOVE to get the DA*50-135.. but its just too spendy right now...I'd like to get a good prime lense to add to the tamy... I do still have my *ist D that I could use as a 2nd camera.. (I was planning on it being just a backup in case the 10D broke or something.) For now, the Tamy 28-75 is the primary lense on my K10D.

05-28-2008, 10:28 AM   #9
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Well, you don't have anything wider than 28mm, which might cause some problems. Can you swing ~$400 for a 10-20mm? I'm sure you could get alot of great (and creative) shots with an ultra-wide!
05-28-2008, 10:48 AM   #10
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The 50 Might be Your Only Choice

QuoteOriginally posted by Truax_photo Quote
Hi All,
I want to get a feel from those of you that have experience with these lenses... Which lense, in your opinion, is the best for portraits & wedding shoots?

40mm limited pancake, 70mm pancake, FA 50mm 1.4, FA 50mm 1.7

I currently am using the Tamron 28-75 Xr Di 2.8..... I really want to get to pentax glass and would like to try using the primes....Any other thoughts are welcomed also...

Thanks!
My suggestion would be to check out the wedding location for lighting conditions. The last ceremony that I shot was in a redwood grove and my choices were either the FA50 at f2.0 or under, or a zoom with a flash. I don't like direct flash and the diffuser was cutting too much light to get shots at any distance. I pretty much got my best shots with the 50mm because of it's speed. If I didn't have it I would have been kind of screwed.
I had 2 Vivitar 285HVs on light stands with remote triggers but you can't light an entire redwood grove so the wedding party was exposed correctly but the background was very dark.
05-28-2008, 11:07 AM   #11
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I hear all of you... I originally had my heart set on the 70mm or 77mm limiteds... but, being forced into a 135mm focal length with these means always being backed up against the wall (more or less)....The 40mm is the other pancake i thought would be fun to have... I just haven't seen many portraits using it.....The price is much better too!.. I might as well add another question too... Has anyone compared the Tamy vs Pentax vs Sigma 2.8 moderate zooms? (16-75mm range) I know sigma has a 16-60 or something wierd like that...Is the pentax glass for this style of lense worth the extra cash?
05-28-2008, 11:15 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Truax_photo Quote
Hi All,
I want to get a feel from those of you that have experience with these lenses... Which lense, in your opinion, is the best for portraits & wedding shoots?

40mm limited pancake, 70mm pancake, FA 50mm 1.4, FA 50mm 1.7

I currently am using the Tamron 28-75 Xr Di 2.8..... I really want to get to pentax glass and would like to try using the primes....Any other thoughts are welcomed also...

Thanks!
Your tammy would work. Also look into a 70 - 200 2.8. I believe Tamron and Sigma are releasing new ones for Pentax....I think the Sigma was due out in May though. Also, Sigma has an 18 -50 2.8 that is highly regarded.

QuoteOriginally posted by felix68 Quote
My suggestion would be to check out the wedding location for lighting conditions. The last ceremony that I shot was in a redwood grove and my choices were either the FA50 at f2.0 or under, or a zoom with a flash. I don't like direct flash and the diffuser was cutting too much light to get shots at any distance. I pretty much got my best shots with the 50mm because of it's speed. If I didn't have it I would have been kind of screwed.
I had 2 Vivitar 285HVs on light stands with remote triggers but you can't light an entire redwood grove so the wedding party was exposed correctly but the background was very dark.

What shutter speed were you using? Without a flash or strobe, you've got 1 plane of light, ambient light. When you throw in a flash or strobe, your adding another plane of light to the scene. Ambient and strobe. Both are separately controlled. Was there anything you could have done to bring up the ambient levels?
05-28-2008, 11:42 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by LaRee Quote
While I love my Voigtlander 125, I certainly wouldn't recommend a manual focus lens for a wedding shoot. I will probably be using my tamron 28-75 for the majority of my work at the wedding I shoot in June. I do have the 35 ltd that I'll be using too, along with the DA 10-17 FE for some fun (off the ladder) group shots. I may put the 44 & 77 ltd I have to work too.
How the heck do you think we shot weddings prior to the mid 1980s?
I've shot literally hundreds of weddings with manual focus equipment, I even shot one with a 4x5 view camera, just to see if it could be done (it can).
I've found that for portraiture, manual focus is better, and for general wedding photography it's a toss up, with my preference leaning towards manual focus. Most wedding pictures are, to a large extent, posed, and the ones that aren't are predictable enough that you can focus on a spot and wait for the subject to walk into it (the processional, for example).
I've lost enough shots because of AF hunting that I don't use it for weddings now.
05-28-2008, 11:57 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by jshurak Quote
Your tammy would work. Also look into a 70 - 200 2.8. I believe Tamron and Sigma are releasing new ones for Pentax....I think the Sigma was due out in May though. Also, Sigma has an 18 -50 2.8 that is highly regarded.




What shutter speed were you using? Without a flash or strobe, you've got 1 plane of light, ambient light. When you throw in a flash or strobe, your adding another plane of light to the scene. Ambient and strobe. Both are separately controlled. Was there anything you could have done to bring up the ambient levels?
Yeah, I tried dragging the shutter with the flashes but I was having problems with the blown highlights between the trees encroaching into people if they moved during the longer shutter opening. Granted I did not have a f2.8 zoom to try and that may have been enough to get a better shutter speed with the ambient conditions.
I decided that the mood was better represented using natural light with the 50 so I stuck with that and zoomed with my feet.
05-28-2008, 12:48 PM   #15
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I would not suggest a fixed focal length. You need to be very reactive under the circumstances you will be shooting under. I suggest a good zoom. I would suggest the Pentax 16-45, Tamron 17-50, Pentax 16-50, Sigma 17-70 Lenses or the NEW Pentax 17-70!

My favorite yet not mentioned here is the Tamron 28-75. I won't recommend it as you may have to go wider than 28mm.

Ben
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