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What lens to use?

dugmardugmar Registered Users Posts: 756 Major grins
edited August 9, 2004 in Cameras
I am shooting with a digital rebel. I have the 18-55 lens that came with it. I am wondering though, for shooting relatively close shots of stationary objects, mostly cars for example, what lens would you recommend I pick up to enhance the quality and creativity of my shots? I am looking to get a few car photos published in some magazines.

Thanks,

Doug

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    cmr164cmr164 Registered Users Posts: 1,542 Major grins
    edited July 18, 2004
    dugmar wrote:
    I am shooting with a digital rebel. I have the 18-55 lens that came with it. I am wondering though, for shooting relatively close shots of stationary objects, mostly cars for example, what lens would you recommend I pick up to enhance the quality and creativity of my shots? I am looking to get a few car photos published in some magazines.

    Thanks,

    Doug
    There are a number of 'L' upgrade lenses that could be suggested, but the increase in quality gained in buying a 24-70L will cost as much or more than your Drebel & 18-55 lens together. If you are not unhappy with the 18-55 then think about adding on a 55-200

    Of course if you are willing to spend some real money...
    Charles Richmond IT & Security Consultant
    Operating System Design, Drivers, Software
    Villa Del Rio II, Talamban, Pit-os, Cebu, Ph
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    wxwaxwxwax Registered Users Posts: 15,471 Major grins
    edited July 18, 2004
    Good advice, cmr. I wonder what lens the pros use in the field? 24-70 2.4L sounds right. Or do you suppose they do what fashion shooters do - stand further away and use a longer lens to make sure the proportions are correct?
    Sid.
    Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam
    http://www.mcneel.com/users/jb/foghorn/ill_shut_up.au
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    pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,700 moderator
    edited July 18, 2004
    dugmar wrote:
    I am shooting with a digital rebel. I have the 18-55 lens that came with it. I am wondering though, for shooting relatively close shots of stationary objects, mostly cars for example, what lens would you recommend I pick up to enhance the quality and creativity of my shots? I am looking to get a few car photos published in some magazines.

    Thanks,

    Doug
    One of the disadvantages of the 18-55 and the 55-200, is that the maximum aperature is aobut f4.5. A faster lens will be helpful in limiting the depth of field and will help the digital Rebel with focusing more easily. (Like the 10D, autofocusing works better with faster lenses.) If the Canon 24-70 L is too pricey at about $1170 (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=264304&is=USA)

    then perhaps a Tamron 28-75 XR DI might work at $349.95. I have used this lens for the last year and find it very sharp and f2.8 is nice. It will have some flare at times, but most zooms do if pointed at light sources. I have posted dozens of images here on dgrin with the Tamron 28-75 XR DI and have recommended it frequently.

    A Canon 50mm Macro f2.5 at $239.95 will be very sharp and the slight telephoto effect of the APS sensor size may be helpful also.

    The macro abillity of all three of these lenses can be used to display small parts of cars as well. This was shot with the 24-70 L yesterday as a grab shot.

    6273270-M.jpg
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
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    mercphotomercphoto Registered Users Posts: 4,550 Major grins
    edited July 19, 2004
    Which lens to use
    dugmar wrote:
    I am shooting with a digital rebel. I have the 18-55 lens that came with it. I am wondering though, for shooting relatively close shots of stationary objects, mostly cars for example, what lens would you recommend I pick up to enhance the quality and creativity of my shots? I am looking to get a few car photos published in some magazines.

    I'm wanting to get into car and motorcycle photography as well (not for mags, just for commission). I want to do a few with my 28-135 lens at different focal lengths and see what happens.

    What type of shot of the car are you looking to do? Full cars? Portions of cars? At an angle, profile, or head-on? Will the background be an intentional part of the shot? Are you wanting accurate shots (stay around 50-80mm, big depth of field) or "artistic" shots (try wide angles, shallow DOF).

    Cars are so large that I can't imagine a fast lens is of much use. Unless you are getting a profile-shot where the car is shallow, using an f1.4 or 2.8 lens at maximum will not let the entire car stay in focus.
    Bill Jurasz - Mercury Photography - Cedar Park, TX
    A former sports shooter
    Follow me at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bjurasz/
    My Etsy store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/mercphoto?ref=hdr_shop_menu
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    pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,700 moderator
    edited July 19, 2004
    mercphoto wrote:
    I'm wanting to get into car and motorcycle photography as well (not for mags, just for commission). I want to do a few with my 28-135 lens at different focal lengths and see what happens.

    What type of shot of the car are you looking to do? Full cars? Portions of cars? At an angle, profile, or head-on? Will the background be an intentional part of the shot? Are you wanting accurate shots (stay around 50-80mm, big depth of field) or "artistic" shots (try wide angles, shallow DOF).

    Cars are so large that I can't imagine a fast lens is of much use. Unless you are getting a profile-shot where the car is shallow, using an f1.4 or 2.8 lens at maximum will not let the entire car stay in focus.
    The reason for recommending the larger aperature lenses was NOT to use the larger aperatures at all times, but to allow the autofocus mechanisms of the DSLR to have lots more light to work with to focus more quickly and accurately - try focusing with an f5.6 lens after the sun goes down or even indoors in average lighting and compare that experience to focusing with a f2.8 lens. If cars are moving, as in racing, faster focusing can be a real assett.
    That the larger aperature lenses allow you more control of DOF is just a plus. 50mmf1.4 lenses are not used wide open 10% of the time I would bet.Laughing.gif
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
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    dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited July 19, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    One of the disadvantages of the 18-55 and the 55-200, is that the maximum aperature is aobut f4.5. A faster lens will be helpful in limiting the depth of field and will help the digital Rebel with focusing more easily. (Like the 10D, autofocusing works better with faster lenses.) If the Canon 24-70 L is too pricey at about $1170 (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=264304&is=USA)

    then perhaps a Tamron 28-75 XR DI might work at $349.95. I have used this lens for the last year and find it very sharp and f2.8 is nice. It will have some flare at times, but most zooms do if pointed at light sources. I have posted dozens of images here on dgrin with the Tamron 28-75 XR DI and have recommended it frequently.

    A Canon 50mm Macro f2.5 at $239.95 will be very sharp and the slight telephoto effect of the APS sensor size may be helpful also.

    The macro abillity of all three of these lenses can be used to display small parts of cars as well. This was shot with the 24-70 L yesterday as a grab shot.

    Thanks for your info on the Tamron 28-70. I've been looking at that along with the Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 and have not yet made a decision. Do you have any experience with the Simga version of this lens? Its hard to tell which is the better lens with reviews being so mixed for both products. It seems that both have issues on full frame cameras, but are not evident on the DSLR due to the crop factor.

    Another lens I'm looking at is the 17-35 f/2.8-4 produced by Sigma & Tamron. Again, I'm having a problem deciding between the two. Do you have any experience with either of these two lenses?

    Thanks for all your help.

    Dave
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    DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited July 19, 2004
    I'm also thinking along the same lines at Bill - what good is an f/2 lens on a subject that is so big? I've done some glamour shots of my housemates '69 Chevelle, I used both my EF-S 18-55mm lens and my 50mm f/1.8. The shots with the 50mm ended up being best around f/6.3 anyway. So why the speed? Actually, I liked the "wide" shots with the 18mm the best. I'd say a good 15-30mm zoom lens would be an ideal car lens. Sigma has a gorgeous one that is much cheaper than the Canon L glass.
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


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    DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited July 19, 2004
    D'oh! for some reason those last two posts didn't show up when I replied.

    Pathfinder: thanks for the answers, makes perfect sense, if only I would stop to think sometimes.

    dkapp: the Sigma is an awesome lens. I haven't used one on my Drebel, but i've used it on my good friend's D70. I like it very much. He loves it, uses it very frequently. Picture quality is great, and as for build quality of the lens itself, I'm always amazed at how much better the Sigma consumer lenses feel than the Canon consumer lenses (L series is a different story).

    this what i have experience with, i would assume the 17-35 you mentioned is similar:
    http://www.sigmaphoto.com/html/pages/15_30_ex.htm
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


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    mercphotomercphoto Registered Users Posts: 4,550 Major grins
    edited July 19, 2004
    Lenses
    pathfinder wrote:
    The reason for recommending the larger aperature lenses was NOT to use the larger aperatures at all times, but to allow the autofocus mechanisms of the DSLR to have lots more light to work with to focus more quickly and accurately

    Aha! Now I understand the recommendation and the reasoning behind it. Thanks. Makes sense.

    Someone else has asked "thanks for your info on the Tamron 28-70. I've been looking at that..." When I had bought my 28-135 Canon my local dealer also recommended the Tamron as well. Very high marks. I'm personally leary of Sigma though, but only from reputation, not from personal experience.
    Bill Jurasz - Mercury Photography - Cedar Park, TX
    A former sports shooter
    Follow me at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bjurasz/
    My Etsy store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/mercphoto?ref=hdr_shop_menu
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    pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,700 moderator
    edited July 19, 2004
    mercphoto wrote:
    Aha! Now I understand the recommendation and the reasoning behind it. Thanks. Makes sense.

    Someone else has asked "thanks for your info on the Tamron 28-70. I've been looking at that..." When I had bought my 28-135 Canon my local dealer also recommended the Tamron as well. Very high marks. I'm personally leary of Sigma though, but only from reputation, not from personal experience.
    Sigma also makes a 12-24 mm zoom - but its max aperature is only f4.5 so it is not fast, but it IS WIDE.lickout.gif
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
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    DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited July 19, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    Sigma also makes a 12-24 mm zoom - but its max aperature is only f4.5 so it is not fast, but it IS WIDE.lickout.gif
    This lens came a close second to the 15-30 - and precisely for that reason, the 15-30 goes to f/3.5 and the extra 3mm on the DSLR is negligible.
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


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    BodwickBodwick Registered Users Posts: 396 Major grins
    edited July 19, 2004
    Car Photography
    This is a great article that should help you get the most from your car shots...

    http://www.cobracountry.com/fototips/home.html



    No matter what lens you use try and fill the frame........Stay low at headlamp hight.......
    "The important thing is to just take the picture with the lens you have when the picture happens."
    Jerry Lodriguss - Sports Photographer

    Reporters sans frontières
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    mercphotomercphoto Registered Users Posts: 4,550 Major grins
    edited July 19, 2004
    Photographing cars
    Bodwick wrote:
    This is a great article that should help you get the most from your car shots...

    http://www.cobracountry.com/fototips/home.html

    Very good article. Great advice about using flash in sunlight. But I'm surprised he didn't talk more about polarizers than he did. You can often confront the issue of bleached out hoods and windshields and restore color to the sides by using a polarizer. Won't solve all the problems a flash will, but it works real good.
    Bill Jurasz - Mercury Photography - Cedar Park, TX
    A former sports shooter
    Follow me at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bjurasz/
    My Etsy store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/mercphoto?ref=hdr_shop_menu
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    maczippymaczippy Registered Users Posts: 597 Major grins
    edited July 23, 2004
    ...

    I would say if you're on a budget then a EF 28-135 f3.5/5.6 can be a very good work horse lens. Some people like it and many do not, however, it does have IS, has a good range and aside from some barrel creep (when tilted) works very well...

    I would worry less about the overall cost of a lens if you plan on doing this *forever*. Camera bodies come and go, but if you invest in good lenses you're set for the future.

    Even if you ran out and bought a 70-200 f2.8 IS the image quality would improve markedly...You're wallet would be lighter, but if you ever plan on upgrading the camera body you're all set...

    That said for the purpose you're looking for the 28-135 f3.5/5.6 would work like a charm...(and you can usually find a bargain on Ebay...).

    Andrew :)
    AutoMotoPhoto® Motorcycle Racing Photography
    Next Race - MotoGP Donington
    :ivar

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    pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,700 moderator
    edited August 7, 2004
    dkapp wrote:
    Thanks for your info on the Tamron 28-70. I've been looking at that along with the Sigma 24-70 f/2.8 and have not yet made a decision. Do you have any experience with the Simga version of this lens? Its hard to tell which is the better lens with reviews being so mixed for both products. It seems that both have issues on full frame cameras, but are not evident on the DSLR due to the crop factor.

    Another lens I'm looking at is the 17-35 f/2.8-4 produced by Sigma & Tamron. Again, I'm having a problem deciding between the two. Do you have any experience with either of these two lenses?

    Thanks for all your help.

    Dave
    I do not have any personal experience with the Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EX

    Some information to compare them is the following
    amron 28-75f2.8 XR DI
    Filter Size 67mm
    f/Stop Range 2.8-32
    Minimum Focus Distance 13" (33 cm), over entire zoom range
    Magnification 1:3.9
    Zoom/Focus Control Two-touch
    Angle of View 75 to 32 Degrees
    Groups/Elements 14/16
    Length 3.6" (92mm)
    Maximum Diameter 2.9" (73mm)
    Weight 1.50 lb (510 g)

    Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EX
    Filter size 82mm
    f/Stop Range 2.8-32
    Minimum Focus Distance 1.3'
    Magnification 1:3.8
    Zoom/Focus Control Two-touch
    Angle of View 84.1 to 34.3 Degrees
    Groups/Elements 13/14
    Length 4.5"
    Maximum Diameter 3.5"
    Weight 1.54 lb


    The flter size of the Sigma is significantly bigger, but the published angle of view is lager also for the Sigma evn tho they both claim to be 24mm at the wide end. The is a little longer and does not focus quite as close.
    If there are any users of this SIgma 24-70 EX, maybe they could post their experience with this lens. The Tamron is very sharp and focuses well on my 10D, but if you plan to shoot into the sun in the evening. you will get some flare at times.
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
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    dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited August 7, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    I do not have any personal experience with the Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EX

    Some information to compare them is the following
    amron 28-75f2.8 XR DI
    Filter Size 67mm
    f/Stop Range 2.8-32
    Minimum Focus Distance 13" (33 cm), over entire zoom range
    Magnification 1:3.9
    Zoom/Focus Control Two-touch
    Angle of View 75 to 32 Degrees
    Groups/Elements 14/16
    Length 3.6" (92mm)
    Maximum Diameter 2.9" (73mm)
    Weight 1.50 lb (510 g)

    Sigma 24-70 f2.8 EX
    Filter size 82mm
    f/Stop Range 2.8-32
    Minimum Focus Distance 1.3'
    Magnification 1:3.8
    Zoom/Focus Control Two-touch
    Angle of View 84.1 to 34.3 Degrees
    Groups/Elements 13/14
    Length 4.5"
    Maximum Diameter 3.5"
    Weight 1.54 lb


    The flter size of the Sigma is significantly bigger, but the published angle of view is lager also for the Sigma evn tho they both claim to be 24mm at the wide end. The is a little longer and does not focus quite as close.
    If there are any users of this SIgma 24-70 EX, maybe they could post their experience with this lens. The Tamron is very sharp and focuses well on my 10D, but if you plan to shoot into the sun in the evening. you will get some flare at times.

    Thanks for the reply. I finally broke down and bought some new glass today. I got the Tamron 17-35 f/2.8-4 & 28-75 f/2.8. I've not had a chance to use either lens, as I got called into work shortly after my purchase. I swear they are tracking me by satellite or something! I'll get out for sure tomorrow. There is a Jazz festival in downtown San Jose that could make for great candid photography.

    Later,
    Dave
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    pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,700 moderator
    edited August 8, 2004
    dkapp wrote:
    Thanks for the reply. I finally broke down and bought some new glass today. I got the Tamron 17-35 f/2.8-4 & 28-75 f/2.8. I've not had a chance to use either lens, as I got called into work shortly after my purchase. I swear they are tracking me by satellite or something! I'll get out for sure tomorrow. There is a Jazz festival in downtown San Jose that could make for great candid photography.

    Later,
    Dave
    I looked through the images on your public smugmug galleries - You have an excellent eye and lovely images. I think you will enjoy your two new lenses. Be sure and demonstrate your new capabilities here at dgrin.1drink.gif
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
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    dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited August 8, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    I looked through the images on your public smugmug galleries - You have an excellent eye and lovely images. I think you will enjoy your two new lenses. Be sure and demonstrate your new capabilities here at dgrin.1drink.gif

    Thanks for the nice words. I don't get much traffic to my sites, so it's always nice to have visitors.

    This has turned into a very expensive hobby of mine. It's a lot of fun to look through my old pics to see where I started just a few years ago to where I am now. With my stressful and time consuming job, it's always a real treat to get out on the weekends and see what I can find.

    I gave the new lenses a test today, and I'm in love. The 17-35 is super sharp and has great image quality. The theme of my outing today was "junk" for a photo contest at FM. Here is one pic I had a chance to edit before I've got to go shopping & start cooking.

    7078619-L.jpg

    Comments & suggestions are always appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Dave
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    wxwaxwxwax Registered Users Posts: 15,471 Major grins
    edited August 8, 2004
    dkapp wrote:
    7078619-S.jpg

    Comments & suggestions are always appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Dave

    bowdown.gif I looove that shot. The composition, lighting, colors (blue sky, dirty white shoe) the contrast of feminine shoe and harsh barbed wire... excellent photograph!
    Sid.
    Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam
    http://www.mcneel.com/users/jb/foghorn/ill_shut_up.au
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    dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited August 8, 2004
    wxwax wrote:
    bowdown.gif I looove that shot. The composition, lighting, colors (blue sky, dirty white shoe) the contrast of feminine shoe and harsh barbed wire... excellent photograph!

    Thanks for the compliments! Today was the first outing with the lens, and I can tell its going to be a lot of fun. I'm looking forward to the next challenge.

    Dave
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    DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited August 9, 2004
    wxwax wrote:
    bowdown.gif I looove that shot. The composition, lighting, colors (blue sky, dirty white shoe) the contrast of feminine shoe and harsh barbed wire... excellent photograph!
    I agree, great shot! You said you edited it already. I'm curious about that lens, and would be interested to see the original pic out of the camera - just for sharpness and color (i know this depends on your settings, but still).
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


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    dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited August 9, 2004
    DoctorIt wrote:
    I agree, great shot! You said you edited it already. I'm curious about that lens, and would be interested to see the original pic out of the camera - just for sharpness and color (i know this depends on your settings, but still).

    I shoot in raw, so posting a pic directly from the camera would require some adjustments. For this picture, I increased the contrast & slight adjustment w/ curves. Then save as jpg & post.

    Dave
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    DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited August 9, 2004
    dkapp wrote:
    I shoot in raw, so posting a pic directly from the camera would require some adjustments. For this picture, I increased the contrast & slight adjustment w/ curves. Then save as jpg & post.

    Dave
    cool - thats what i was looking for... mainly curious on the sharpness, like I said. I would really like a lens like your Tamron in that range. I've looked hard at the Sigma, only because I've actually looked through it.
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


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