Newbie learning 35mm f1.8


qdanny

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Dec 22, 2010
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#1
Hi. I am learning to use the 35mm f1.8 effectively. I understand (or maybe I dont) the concept of photographing wide-open (f1.8) for low-light & close-up, like my baby against a faraway backdrop (bokeh). The pictures come up nicely. But how does this lens apply to landscape? Hope to learn from the experience Bros.
 

jeffchanjj

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Jan 30, 2010
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#2
Hi. I am learning to use the 35mm f1.8 effectively. I understand (or maybe I dont) the concept of photographing wide-open (f1.8) for low-light & close-up, like my baby against a faraway backdrop (bokeh). The pictures come up nicely. But how does this lens apply to landscape? Hope to learn from the experience Bros.
ok...

having your aperture wide open means only a very small portion of the photo is in focus due to the very shallow depth of field at f/1.8

if you would like to use this lens for landscape (although i wouldn't find 35mm it wide enough), you just need to stop down your aperture to f/8 or above (try to avoid f/16 and above due to softness from diffraction) and most objects in your photo would be in focus
 

eleveninth

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Jan 17, 2006
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#3
As above nt wide enough, But u can read up on stitching.
 

qdanny

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Dec 22, 2010
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#4
That's what has been puzzling me. For 35mm landscape, I have to switch from f1.8 to f6-f10 and the angle is also not wide enough. Would it be better if I use my kit lens 18-55mm for landscape which can also cater to f6-f10? Why would I still use the 35mm? Sorry if this is a stupid question but I read a lot of threads that says 35mm good for landscape.
 

jeffchanjj

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Jan 30, 2010
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#5
That's what has been puzzling me. For 35mm landscape, I have to switch from f1.8 to f6-f10 and the angle is also not wide enough. Would it be better if I use my kit lens 18-55mm for landscape which can also cater to f6-f10? Why would I still use the 35mm? Sorry if this is a stupid question but I read a lot of threads that says 35mm good for landscape.
haha indeed you are right
increasing the f number won't make the angle wider

and since you have to use f/8 or so, you must as well use your kit lens since its so much wider than the 35mm prime

so, i would definitely find the 18-55 more useful for landscapes

one reason i could think of why people prefer the 35mm is because the image quality MAY be better (i didn't do a comparison so i don't know)
so if you don't pixel peep that much and ain't very particular about getting the best image quality i suggest you DON'T use the 35mm lens
 

qdanny

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Dec 22, 2010
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#6
So i see.... I thought I had missed something in 35mm for landscape... I will try comparing the landscape images between the kit lens and 35mm but initial assessment between these 2 lens doesn't seem significant to my newbie eyes.
 

Daoyin

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Nov 25, 2008
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#7
"35mm" may be sufficient for landscape IF it was a full frame camera. But these days with the variety of focal lengths, it is not the focal length of choice.

A prime lens should give better image quality than a zoom lens. But having said that, the Nikon 18-55mm has also got a good reputation. Go try it out shooting landscapes to decide for yourself.
 

Kipling88

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Apr 7, 2010
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#8
Hmm, i tink u are confused why ur 35mm isn't wide enuff, ur DX body i presumed has crop factor, so u are actually getting 50mm instead. Compare to ur 18mm widest from 18-55 kit lens, its wider after 18 X approximate 1.5= approximate 27mm which is wider than the 50mm that u get from the 35mm lens. Maybe u like read up on the DX crop factor.

Wide open at f1.8 doesnt affect angle, the word wide might have misled u..

I personally like 35mm f1.8, take few steps back if it isn't wide enuff. If it's still isn't, maybe u need a wide angle lens.
 

Astroben

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Aug 3, 2010
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#9
Yes wide open refers to the aperture's opening, how wide is it. And not wide angle(which refers to focal length in mm). Ie 18mm is wider than 35mm.

I'm a 35mm f1.8 user too. Happy!
Agree with kipling88 to zoom with your feet if you may.
Why don't you switch to zoom kits for a wider angle? I just feel that the image quality/distortion factor of this 35mm prime is way better even when compared at same fstop. They are of a different genre.
This, to me is enough to let my kit lens hibernate in the dry cab ;)
 

baggiolee

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Dec 7, 2006
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#10
35mm is not wide enough for places like HDB's room (for DX DSLR) where u can't zoom with ur feet, esp group photos.
 

qdanny

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Dec 22, 2010
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#11
I guess this is why the manufacturers make so many different kinds of lens, to suit each and everyone's situation and preference. Now that I learn all these from you, I will carry a 18-55mm and 35mm whenever I travel. Thanks a lot to those who shared their experience.
 

lamester

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Dec 29, 2007
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#12
The 35mm (52.5 on DX) is good for walkabout/street shots NOT to be confused with landscape ;)
 

Jul 9, 2009
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#13
The 35mm (52.5 on DX) is good for walkabout/street shots NOT to be confused with landscape ;)
Yes totally agreed. :thumbsup: Tried this small project if ur able, just one body and the 35mm for min. period of 6 months. I did that for almost close to a year, love it and made many shots with it. the 52.5mm FOV is permanently stuck in my head now haha.
 

surefire

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Feb 25, 2008
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#15
I guess this is why the manufacturers make so many different kinds of lens, to suit each and everyone's situation and preference. Now that I learn all these from you, I will carry a 18-55mm and 35mm whenever I travel. Thanks a lot to those who shared their experience.
The main advantage of the 35mm is its large aperture (f1.8) which allows u to shoot when the light is dim n u do not want to use flash for eg in an art gallery or museum. For landscapes, u will be better off with a wider angle lens n since u will likely shoot in good light, it's not as critical to get a large aperture lens. For travel, it's a good idea to pair yr 35mm with a good zoom like the 16-85 or 18-200
 

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TsQ

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Jan 27, 2002
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#16
I use the kit 18-105 and 35 when travel...

and since i do not take as many landscape photos.. my 35 is attached to the camera 75% of the time

nowadays I got one method ... As for me I don't peek into my photos and asking for the best quality... so when i need to do a wide, landscape shot i take out my PnS that has a 24mm (equal to D90's 16mm). In bright day light... I won't really mind and might not even tell the lower PQ from a PnS, esp i don't view the photo at 100%.

35mm, basically reserve it for i) dark scene without flash ii) portrait ... similar to how u would use ur 50mm f1.8 except 35mm on a 1.5crop is more usable for many ppl at tighter shots (like over a dining table shots in restaurant)
 

auden09

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Jul 22, 2009
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#17
you gotta rmb that the depth of field is very thin. making it rather useless in dim lightings if u wanna take a group shot or a night scenery shot. i used to buy into the faster f-stop is great concept, but after shooting for awhile now...im a zoom+flash person. i shoot a lot of group photos and street shots where i want more things to be in focused than just a person's face or nose (f/1.8). just my 2 cents. that's just me.
 

TsQ

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#18
you gotta rmb that the depth of field is very thin. making it rather useless in dim lightings if u wanna take a group shot or a night scenery shot. i used to buy into the faster f-stop is great concept, but after shooting for awhile now...im a zoom+flash person. i shoot a lot of group photos and street shots where i want more things to be in focused than just a person's face or nose (f/1.8). just my 2 cents. that's just me.
u r right.. if group photos where ppl are standing at different distance to u... its not gonna work.. i had this problem once where i set my 70-200 to f2.8 and few went off focus until i hv to hide the photo as i scared the blurred person think i don't like their face or something :)
 

tehzeh

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Aug 7, 2009
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#19
You do not always have to use a wide angle lens to take whatever-scapes. I used my 50mm (75mm on my camera) to shoot some cityscapes and it turned out pretty good... and some people use telephoto lenses to shoot landscapes...
 

kentwong81

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Jun 18, 2010
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#20
the f1.8 or f1.4 prime lenses are more versatile than just shoot at wide open. You can stop down the f number to manipulate the DOF you desire. But for a zoom, you don't get that kind of flexibility in DOF. The largest aperture you can get from a zoom is only f2.8 but yet a prime lens at f2.8 is sharper than any zoom lens at f2.8. What a zoom can give you is the flexibility in focal lengths.

To shoot group photos, you have to stop down to f5.6-f8.0 to get enough DOF, no matter what lenses you use.

you gotta rmb that the depth of field is very thin. making it rather useless in dim lightings if u wanna take a group shot or a night scenery shot. i used to buy into the faster f-stop is great concept, but after shooting for awhile now...im a zoom+flash person. i shoot a lot of group photos and street shots where i want more things to be in focused than just a person's face or nose (f/1.8). just my 2 cents. that's just me.
 

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