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Best DSLR lens range?

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I need some tips from any other DSLR users out there. I'm about to buy a lens which I need for shooting at a wedding. I'll be doing portraits and close ups, and I don't want to be swapping lenses eve… Read More
backtothecaves Avatar
9y, 5d agoPosted 9 years, 5 days ago
I need some tips from any other DSLR users out there.
I'm about to buy a lens which I need for shooting at a wedding. I'll be doing portraits and close ups, and I don't want to be swapping lenses every 5 minutes.
I was looking at either 18-70mm or 18-135mm. I'm not so keen on 18-200mm as these tend to have more elements, thus compromising image quality
What would anyone recommend?
backtothecaves Avatar
9y, 5d agoPosted 9 years, 5 days ago
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#1
If you want good portraits you will want a fast lens, the lower the F number the better. Generally you will be shooting at the 40-80mm (35mm) range [so about 25 to 50mm on an APS size sensor].
1 Like #2
For weddings you need something with a very fast aperture (at least 2.8). Saying that I use a 24-105 which is F4 which is fine for outside but no good for indoors (dark churches, etc). I've got a prime lens I use for those situations. It'll be difficult to find a perfect all-in-one wedding lens for any price to be honest but the Canon 24-70 2.8 is a good all rounder (not cheap though).
#3
Mitzi
For weddings you need something with a very fast aperture (at least 2.8). Saying that I use a 24-105 which is F4 which is fine for outside but no good for indoors (dark churches, etc). I've got a prime lens I use for those situations. It'll be difficult to find a perfect all-in-one wedding lens for any price to be honest but the Canon 24-70 2.8 is a good all rounder (not cheap though).


Thanks. Mine is a Nikon, but there is a Nikon 18-70mm which is f3.5 and should be just about OK. I already have a 50mm f1.8 which I could use indoors if it's very dark. To be honest I was thinking more about the outdoor shots, but I'm glad you reminded me about the indoor stuff. This will be my first wedding shoot, and I'm doing it for a friend so any other tips you can give me would be great.
#4
Yea a low f value or large aperture will allow you to produce some really dynamic shots, blurring the background/foreground. It's an effect I really like but I suppose it's all personal preference. :thumbsup:
#5
Ah, not sure about the Nikon stuff! I'm a Canon man! I'm not a pro (far from it!) but I I do enjoy my photography.

I'm photographing a friends wedding on Saturday too (but they also pro!). Wouldn't fancy the pressure of being THE wedding photographer!

The wide aperture isn't just for bluring backgrounds etc, its also vital in ensuring you get fast enough shutter speeds to prevent blurred shots in low light levels.

My advice -

Use a fairly high ISO (i.e. 400ish) to ensure all shots are sharp. Bump it up to 800 or even 1600 in the church/night time etc.
Use a flashgun (not the pop up flash) if you have one and bounce it off the ceiling

[url]www.fredmiranda.com/forums[/url] has a dedicated wedding forum, go and have a read over there, its great.
1 Like #6
Beware using too high an ISO (1600) as you'll start to encounter grain (depending on your camera...the Nikon D3 can have an ISO of 25,600!!!!)

I'd use your prime indoors, perhaps with a tripod and monopod depending on avalible light and space. If you use flash make sure its pointing up or away or heavlily diffused otherwise they images could look a bit naff. Saying that sometimes using flash outdoors can improve a picture.

Best idea would be to arrive slightly earlier, scope out the place and pick the best spots, take readings etc as it will save time.

As far as the lens choice goes, i think you've got it pretty sussed, i dont think you'll need a semi-zoom like 200mm as chances are you might not have the space to work with.

As its for a friend chances are you'll know some people therefore making them slightly more relaxed at having their photos taken, use this to your advantage by catching the more au natural shots.

take a lot of photos, and have fun!
1 Like #7
Just remember to use 5.6f if your taking group shots or only your focusing subjects (1 or 2 people in the group) will be in focus.

IMHO you can get away with a zoom anything around 24-70 Like the Canon.

Your 50mm will be nice and handy for the reception and or evening, as its usually dark and you want to catch people quickly and candidly f1.8 may shoot a little soft around the edges so you may want to stop it down to about f2.2.

Try not to exceed ISO 400 unless you really have to your photos will get grainer as you climb the ISO scale, but if its the only way to get the shot then go as high as you like, better to have a grainy shot than no shot at all. By turning a photo to B & W in post processing you can get away with higher ISO settings.

I tend to shoot weddings with 2 cameras for 2 reasons..

1) Whats your plan if your Camera fails on you? Game Over!

2) I can mount 2 lenses usually canon 24-70L 2.8 and 70-200L 2.8 IS at the same time giving me the freedom to carry on shooting without changing lenses every 5 mins.

Hope this helps.
#8
Mitzi
Ah, not sure about the Nikon stuff! I'm a Canon man! I'm not a pro (far from it!) but I I do enjoy my photography.

I'm photographing a friends wedding on Saturday too (but they also pro!). Wouldn't fancy the pressure of being THE wedding photographer!

The wide aperture isn't just for bluring backgrounds etc, its also vital in ensuring you get fast enough shutter speeds to prevent blurred shots in low light levels.

My advice -

Use a fairly high ISO (i.e. 400ish) to ensure all shots are sharp. Bump it up to 800 or even 1600 in the church/night time etc.
Use a flashgun (not the pop up flash) if you have one and bounce it off the ceiling

[url]www.fredmiranda.com/forums[/url] has a dedicated wedding forum, go and have a read over there, its great.


Good link - thanks.
I know what you mean about being THE only one. I have said to them they really should invest in a pro as they will look at these photos for the rest of their lives, but they really can't afford one, so better me than nobody. They were initially saying to all their friends 'Bring your digital camera and let us have all your memory cards at the end' - that sounds like a recipe for disaster.
At least I now have a DSLR so I can review each shot to check it if necessary.
#9
Well good luck! Post your best shots after the event :)

With regards to using ISOs over 400...

I'd rather go up to ISO 1600 and get a decent grainy shot (which can be fixed in post processing) than have a blurred wrecked shot any day of the week! Obviously remember to switch the ISO down again when you go into a ligher area (you don't want to shoot the whole day on ISO 1600!). The high ISO performance of modern SLRs is very good.

Don't fear high ISOs!!

Edit - obviously I'm taking about Canon cameras, no idea what Nikon ISO performance is like :)
#10
Celticsun
Just remember to use 5.6f if your taking group shots or only your focusing subjects (1 or 2 people in the group) will be in focus.

IMHO you can get away with a zoom anything around 24-70 Like the Canon.

Your 50mm will be nice and handy for the reception and or evening, as its usually dark and you want to catch people quickly and candidly f1.8 may shoot a little soft around the edges so you may want to stop it down to about f2.2.

Try not to exceed ISO 400 unless you really have to your photos will get grainer as you climb the ISO scale, but if its the only way to get the shot then go as high as you like, better to have a grainy shot than no shot at all. By turning a photo to B & W in post processing you can get away with higher ISO settings.

I tend to shoot weddings with 2 cameras for 2 reasons..

1) Whats your plan if your Camera fails on you? Game Over!

2) I can mount 2 lenses usually canon 24-70L 2.8 and 70-200L 2.8 IS at the same time giving me the freedom to carry on shooting without changing lenses every 5 mins.

Hope this helps.


Thanks for this. I was thinking of using 2 cameras, but my second will be a 35mm film camera. Like you say - back up, and good if an opportunity arises and there's no time to swap lenses.

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