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11-30-2009, 12:23 PM   #1
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Lowlight and AF

I shot a wedding on the weekend with my K200D, and I used two lenses, the kit 18 - 55 and a MF 50mm. The 2 problems I had were the 18 - 55 had a hard time focusing, and the 50 mm well being manual and sometimes you need to get "The shot" takes too much time and getting the sweet spot is quite difficult. (blur)

What I want to know is I'm looking at getting the DA 50 - 135 F2.8 and also something like the DA 18 - 50 F2.8.. Will these lenses focus much faster and lock on so I can get the shot??? I dont want this problem anymore!!!


Rollin

11-30-2009, 12:53 PM   #2
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Not that I want to hurt your feelings, but weddings, to me, are about the most difficult assignment I can get. The two lenses you mention will be somewhat faster, but not by much. What makes a difference is experience. Unfortunately, you can't buy that. It only comes with time and practice. When I started in photography, there was no AF and we managed to get the shots the same. You need to anticipate what's going to happen, and where it will happen, so you can nail the shot.
11-30-2009, 01:05 PM   #3
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Maybe a foolish suggestion and a downgrade, but i'd suggest buying K-x instead.
k200d has, well, interesting af. It's not bad, but it gets slow or fails completely in lower light.

The camera has a less powerful af system (Compared to K10/20d) as well, so it would not have the juice to drive quickly a better (and heavier) lens, which would result in faster AF on top bodies.

Current (Kx,K7) cameras seem to have significantly improved af. But i recommend you to test this at some shop, side by side with your cam and the same lenses.
11-30-2009, 01:38 PM   #4
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Experience does count in anything you do, but you need to get your feet wet before you will ever have experience! Thats a great little tip about, knowing whats going to happen and be ready for it.. I will be considering another SLR in the future but I of course want to do everything I can with this one so I know upgrading is a wise choice, and I dont want to spend a ton on lenses if I happen to change to a different company. I will definately go and try out the different lenses on bodies..
Hey Flyer, in your opinion what is a great lense(s) to shoot a wedding..

thanks

11-30-2009, 01:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by flyer Quote
What makes a difference is experience. Unfortunately, you can't buy that. It only comes with time and practice. When I started in photography, there was no AF and we managed to get the shots the same. You need to anticipate what's going to happen, and where it will happen, so you can nail the shot.
This is a real truism.

Modern technology manages to focus dSLRs much faster than any manual focus.

So how did people ever manage with manual focus lenses?

I don't think any successful photographer ever tried to focus when they saw the shot -
by then it'd be way too late.....

and it really doesn't matter how fast the AF on any dSLR is either - they are all at least about 1/3-1/2 sec - that is still way too slow for a shot seen in the viewfinder - by the time the fast AF shot is taken it's already 1/3 sec past.......

The main trick is to PRE-focus ones lens (half-depression on shutter button) and wait for the shot/fleeting expression - then the lag is down to less than 1/10th second faster than human reaction time - then the only thing to concentrate on is looking for and anticipating the shot.
11-30-2009, 02:04 PM   #6
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Maybe use a flash? Aside from not needing fast glass most flashes have a focus assist beam if you insist on auto focus. Flash is a dying art and it seems people find it to be passe'. But trust me when you learn how to use it, it makes the shots better. that is of course if it is practical to use it, which it is not always.
11-30-2009, 03:33 PM   #7
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Having a fast fifty helps with focusing - then having an AF fast fifty is a real virtue in real challenging conditions.

Spotbeams from flash only provide useful AF assistance if the subject is reasonably stationary, otherwise it simply can't cope. So either look for a high-contrast area in the frame close to the subject in distance from the camera to lock focus onto, or just manually focus.
11-30-2009, 05:10 PM   #8
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A great accessory for manual focussing with the K200D is the O-ME53 magnifying eyecup. I have found that very helpful in improving my results with my manual lenses, especially under dim light. It magnifies the viewfinder display and helps you more precisely nail focus.

Like Ash, I too have found that putting a bright lens like the FA 50 1.4 on the K200D results in very much improved autofocus performance, certainly over the standard kit lens. It's something you might like to look into getting. It's handy under many circumstances.

Also for weddings you probably can't beat something like an 18-55 f2.8, as you mention. While the Pentax lens is great, the Tamron is also said to be good, as is the equivalent Sigma. The Tamron 28-75 f2.8 is also said to be an excellent performer and has a useful compromise range.

11-30-2009, 05:34 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by rollin Quote
Hey Flyer, in your opinion what is a great lense(s) to shoot a wedding..
thanks
I use the FA 31 Ltd on one body, and the FA 77 Ltd on the other in the church most of the time. I'll switch to the DA 14 for the group shots and back to the DA*16-50 and DA*50-135 during the reception. Generally, that's what works for me, not that I'm rushing to do weddings. One thing that helps a lot is to do a visit to the church and reception hall before the event, and with a few friends, take some test shots with the lights the way they're going to be during the event. It will also allow you to determine where to be located for the set shots to get the best results. A wedding is not something where you just pop in and start shooting, there is a lot of planning involved. After a few "hundreds", you can generally manage without planning, because your experience will allow you to figure in a second what will work and what won't work given the lighting and space available. I also take along at least two flashes, if not three, and a lot of batteries for the flashes. At least three sets per flash. And, if I'm the hired photographer, I would never go without a back up camera. One other important tool is a step ladder to get the group shots and some pictures of the people on the dance floor. Also, never ever forget a roll of gaffer's tape and some thread and needles (yes, you often have to sew a button back on). Also, ALWAYS take along a white umbrella.
12-01-2009, 05:17 PM   #10
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Everything I was looking for!.. thankyou
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