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Thread: What one lens for indoor shoots?

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    Senior Member UncleFai's Avatar
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    Default What one lens for indoor shoots?

    One old-bird told me that for indoor shoots (in a place fairly well lit), he would forgo the flash, use a high ISO and a fast lens (he uses the Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 - of coz well beyond my price range... and skill level ).

    I have a general walk about lens (Tammy 18-270mm) but it often cannot reach for the higher f's in indoor situation.

    So if I am to get one lens for indoor events (like a reception, a family gathering, or a talk etc) with lots of people (the main subject), what would you guys recommend? Prime or zoom? f2.8? What focus lengths?

    Thanks.

  2. #2

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    depends a lot on what you want to do.

    17-50 f/2.8 is very handy for events and 70-200 f/2.8 for most sports in my opinion. You would also need a body that can do high iso with minimal noise. The Kx and the 550D comes to mind.
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    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    in a indoor situation, sometime shooting with flash is able to deliver better results, sometime shooting without flash can get better mood.

    that is very depends on the creative eye of the photographer, and understanding of lighting, plus the skills to handle different types of situation, and very importantly, is decide when to use flash and when not to use flash.

    nevertheless, the cheapest solution is get a 50mm f1.8 lens, it costs you less than $200 to have one.
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  4. #4

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    i agree with catchlights.

    Flash shouldn't be ruled out totally. Old birds don't necessary give the best advice. Proper use of the flash will/may give better results than without flash

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    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by photoart View Post
    Old birds don't necessary give the best advice.
    As long as we only know this one line from TS we should not jump to any conclusion about the old-bird. Wouldn't do any justice to him and other senior members here in CS who give very sound advices. Most important is to know the context (situation, equipment, experience) from which the advice comes. Here: "for indoor shoots (in a place fairly well lit)".
    I had the pleasure and honour to watch and talk to an old-bird. Invaluable, beyond all tech-talk.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    I am just commenting in general.

    Just like not all Presidents can make good decisions or lead the country well.... and not all Fathers can teach their children well

    besides he did say(he uses the Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 - of coz well beyond my price range) so the next option would be to consider flash

  7. #7

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    MHO is that not bringing a flash can be fool hardy in an indoor situation. Why put yourself to the risk that on that day the usually bright location has its curtains drawn and is lit with a couple of lamps rather than the usual lighting as the event organizer felt that this gave more ambiance.


    Just leave the flash in there as part of the camera bag kit
    You are just cutting off one option for nothing by not having one.

    A f2.8 lens does not always cut it indoors either. Just play with you current setup and you will know. Set the ISO to the highest you can accept (eg. 1600); Aperture to the largest on your lens (eg. f4 ); Use it indoors and see for yourself what shutter speeds you are getting. A f2.8 lens will just shift this shutter speed faster by x2 (Eg. 1/60 to 1/120).

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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    I guess sometimes it is out of necessity. There are times when I just take my camera with 24-70 2.8L for some casual outings, too lazy to bring along the flash etc. So no choice when it comes to indoor but to boost the ISO and shoot.
    Chris
    5D2 / 5D3 / 16-35 2.8L II USM / 24-70 2.8L / 100 2.8L IS Macro/ 70-200 2.8L IS

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    Senior Member ovaltinemilo's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai View Post
    One old-bird told me that for indoor shoots (in a place fairly well lit), he would forgo the flash, use a high ISO and a fast lens (he uses the Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 - of coz well beyond my price range... and skill level ).

    I have a general walk about lens (Tammy 18-270mm) but it often cannot reach for the higher f's in indoor situation.

    So if I am to get one lens for indoor events (like a reception, a family gathering, or a talk etc) with lots of people (the main subject), what would you guys recommend? Prime or zoom? f2.8? What focus lengths?

    Thanks.
    Looking at the lens mentioned, the old bird is probably using a FF with clean high iso image while you are using a cropped sensor which might not be able to match his noise performance. For shooting ppl indoor, using high iso might not work all the time. ISO 800 is the max for me, if I need anything higher, I would definitely use flash + exposed for the ambient while dial down the iso...So I wud feel f2.8 + flash would be good for most occasion, prime might get too tight a frame for group photos.

    external flash are powerful and can bounce off ceiling. Even if without the ext flash, the built in flash comes in handy too...just diffuse it and the result should be decent.
    Last edited by ovaltinemilo; 15th June 2010 at 11:54 AM.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by ovaltinemilo View Post
    Looking at the lens mentioned, the old bird is probably using a FF with clean high iso image while you are using a cropped sensor which might not be able to match his noise performance. For shooting ppl indoor, using high iso might not work all the time. ISO 800 is the max for me, if I need anything higher, I would definitely use flash + exposed for the ambient while dial down the iso...So I wud feel f2.8 + flash would be good for most occasion, prime might get too tight a frame for group photos.

    external flash are powerful and can bounce off ceiling. Even if without the ext flash, the built in flash comes in handy too...just diffuse it and the result should be decent.

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    Senior Member UncleFai's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Oh yes, forgot to mention that he has a D700 with that 24-70mm f/2.8.

    I tried dialing in the same settings he used on my D90. Could not get it in. When I snapped with the best I could dial in, the result was far more noisy than his. Oh well, you get what you pay (and can pay) for.

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    Senior Member ovaltinemilo's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai View Post
    Oh yes, forgot to mention that he has a D700 with that 24-70mm f/2.8.

    I tried dialing in the same settings he used on my D90. Could not get it in. When I snapped with the best I could dial in, the result was far more noisy than his. Oh well, you get what you pay (and can pay) for.
    But you have also paid for a very good dslr already
    No point nitpicking a little noise...a noisy photo can still be a keeper...nv a blurred photo that's not intended
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    Senior Member Numnumball's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai View Post
    One old-bird told me that for indoor shoots (in a place fairly well lit), he would forgo the flash, use a high ISO and a fast lens (he uses the Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8 - of coz well beyond my price range... and skill level ).

    I have a general walk about lens (Tammy 18-270mm) but it often cannot reach for the higher f's in indoor situation.

    So if I am to get one lens for indoor events (like a reception, a family gathering, or a talk etc) with lots of people (the main subject), what would you guys recommend? Prime or zoom? f2.8? What focus lengths?

    Thanks.
    Depends on what you are looking at.. If constrainted by budget, Generally i find Tammy 17-50 f2.8 a pretty viable option to be used with ur D90 for low light shooting, coupled with a fast prime like 35 f1.8 or 50f1.8.. It will be sufficient for ur needs.
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    Member jsprtan's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    I will just use a wide zoom with flash. Cause the color of the photos will look much better and it is of course cheaper.

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    Member DrSpock's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    If you are using a DX cam, then the a N35f1.8 or 50f1.8 will be good as what bro numnumball recommended for indoors with ambient light. Otherwise if you need something more potent a Tamy17-50 with VC would be good as you can shoot as low as 1/8s or better without flash & tripod but only for static subjects. Another good lens will be the Tk116f2.8 for that tight indoor
    Last edited by DrSpock; 18th June 2010 at 12:28 PM.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Here is something to think about.

    In reality, there isn't one lens for indoor. It will really depend on how much light and how the photographer use a particular piece of tool to create their work.

    Flash or no flash is a matter of choice and only the photographer will be able to tell.

    There is always limitation on every choice and it is abt how to overcome those limitation to get the image.

    So do yourself a favor, sit down, have a think about what you want to shoot and how to shoot it.

    I shoot with available light almost exclusively and shoot almost 95% of my images with 50mm f1.4 but that comes with a challenge of it's own but certainly my preferred way to shoot.

    Know your technique, your shortcoming and your location as well as your gear will help creating images.

    If you are making money from the trade, make sure you don't bring a tool that don't fully understand.

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    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: What one lens for indoor shoots?

    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai View Post
    Oh yes, forgot to mention that he has a D700 with that 24-70mm f/2.8.

    I tried dialing in the same settings he used on my D90. Could not get it in. When I snapped with the best I could dial in, the result was far more noisy than his. Oh well, you get what you pay (and can pay) for.
    He is on a FF, you are on a crop. He has 2.8 lenses you have a very slow lens. If you dial in the same settings as him, of course your results will be bad.

    You make it sound like the D90 is bad...

    THIS is shot with D300s (ISO performance supposed to be a little grainier than D90). If you ever been to the Marina barrage at night you will know how dark it is. Seems ok to you? Of course I am using a 50mm F1.2 lens.

    You need to compare apples with apples. Oranges with oranges. If you get fast lenses, you can achieve better low light performance.
    Last edited by daredevil123; 18th June 2010 at 06:50 PM.

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