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Author Topic: Indoor Lens recommendations?  (Read 4482 times)

mgj167

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Indoor Lens recommendations?
« on: July 11, 2013, 07:02:30 AM »
I have a 60D. And I have a reasonable set of lenses in my kit for outdoor use where I shoot most of the time.

I'd like to add a lens for indoor use -- things like family & friend gatherings, indoor events (graduations, arts, etc.). I generally end up not being really up close to the subject. And generally don't use a tripod.

One key factor is that I have a tremor in my hand. So far my experience with non image stabilized lens without a tripod has been pretty poor in terms of getting a nice sharp photo.

So for indoor use, I've been considering these options:

- Canon EF 100L 2.8 IS Macro
- Sigma 17-70 2.8-4 DC OC HSM Macro
- Tamron 24-70 2.8 Di VC USD

I've also thought about the Canon EF-S 17-55 2.8 IS USM, but am afraid it doesn't have sufficient range.

Any thoughts/recommendation about these lenses for this situation? Or other lenses to consider? Or other factors to consider?

Thanks in advance!
« Last Edit: July 11, 2013, 09:08:28 AM by mgj167 »
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Indoor Lens recommendations?
« on: July 11, 2013, 07:02:30 AM »

John

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2013, 07:33:52 AM »
u might consider the 24-105 f/4. it's a great and highly versatile lens both inside and outside. it's a bummer not to have the 2.8 capability when inside, but u can compensate for that with flash. plus, the extra DOF when taking pictures of 2 or more people is nice to have. the 24-105 has IS. it has a great zoom range and it isn't all that heavy.

if i had to pick from your list, then i would go with the 24-70 f/2.8 with IS. if you don't want extra weight then think about going for a prime (50mm, 85mm). if u aren't generally up close to your subjects (as u said) then i would probably want an 85 mm prime. the 85 f/1.8 is a very light lens that produces sharp images.

all in all, i would strongly consider the 24-105 or the 24-70 since i like some zoom when i am inside. if i was far away from my subjects at something like a graduation then i would want something like the 70-200. u can't buy a single lens that will do everything u want to do. u have to decide what u want to do most of the time and get a lens to meet those needs.



neuroanatomist

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2013, 07:38:41 AM »
It's a bit of a challenge.  The 17-55 will give you the best image quality of the choices you list. But, if 55mm is not long enough then that's not the right choice, because the primary determining factor in lens choice should almost always be focal length first.   Still, 18 MP allows a lot of freedom to crop, as long as you're not making very large prints.

I think you would find that the 100 L would be often too long, and definitely not allow sufficient flexibility for family events. A zoom is usually a much better choice in those situations, unless you are shooting with more than one camera.

In your place, I think I would go with the Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 IS. Personally, I think it is the best general purpose zoom lens for a crop body.  It also works very well combined with a fast telephoto prime, such as the 85/1.8, which makes a very nice portrait lens on a crop body.

You could also consider the Tamron 24-70/2.8 VC.  However, I find that 24 mm is usually not wide enough indoors on a crop body. It's not even wide angle, technically that lens is a normal to telephoto zoom.  Indoors, you can always crop, but often you cannot back up.

Good luck with your decision!
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ecka

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2013, 07:40:33 AM »
I have a 60D. And I have a reasonable set of lenses in my kit for outdoor use where I shoot most of the time.

I'd like to add a lens for indoor use -- things like family & friend gatherings, indoor events (graduations, arts, etc.). I generally end up not being really up close to the subject. And generally don't use a tripod.

One key factor is that I have a tremor in my hand. So far my experience with non image stabilized lens without a tripod has been pretty poor in terms of getting a nice sharp photo.

So for indoor use, I've been considering these options:

- Canon EF 100L 2.8 IS Macro
- Sigma 17-70 2.8-4 DC OC HSM Macro
- Tamron 17-70 24-70 2.8 Di VC USD

I've also thought about the Canon EF-S 17-55 2.8 IS USM, but am afraid it doesn't have sufficient range.

Any thoughts/recommendation about these lenses for this situation? Or other lenses to consider? Or other factors to consider?

Thanks in advance!

IS isn't going to freeze any action, people in motion. You still need a fast enough shutter speed to get a nice and sharp photograph. My advice would be EF 85/1.8 USM, which is a fast focusing, sharp at 1.8, very affordable and overall decent lens for what you want it to do.
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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2013, 07:57:44 AM »
There are a couple ways to address your problem.  Faster lenses and flash.  I often don't find f/2.8 fast enough because I still find myself at ISO 3200 and above.  In that case, using the larger aperture of faster lenses will allow you to trade DOF for ISO/shutter speed.  f/1.4 lenses are really helpful in these situations, but I tend to focus on a single subject because the DOF is thin.

In your case, I think a flash would be more helpful.  You can then use your current lenses and drag the shutter.  The flash will help freeze the subject while the longer exposure time will allow the background to be exposed properly.

SwissBear

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2013, 08:07:05 AM »
For range, nothing beats the 70-200. Either the Canon IS II, or then, based on reviews, the newest from tamron. Maybe such a lens is too long. My 150mm lens is superb for portraits (head only) at a distance of some 4-5 meters.

On the other hand, the sigma 18-35 f/1.8 seems very promising, and paired with a canon 85 f/1.8 you also get some reach. No image stabilization on both, but a good stop faster than the zoom.

Something in between these two options would be the sigma 50-150 f/2.8 (DC OS).

Ever thought about a monopod?

Concernig the lenses you mention, the canon&tamron 24-70 have very good reviews. A prime makes you move quite a lot at social events, but the added macro capability offers yet another playfield ;)
Whether the new siggy 17-70 C is any good, I dont know...

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retina

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2013, 08:13:44 AM »
+1 for the 85mm f/1.8, for awesome portraits at family gatherings.

also +1 for the speedlite, allowing you to use simply any of your current lenses and get very decent results.

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2013, 08:13:44 AM »

sdsr

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2013, 08:44:56 AM »
The indoor situations you describe suggest fairly large public spaces rather than, say, inside an apartment, so the ceilings may be high enough to preclude bounce-flash (flash would be inappropriate/rude in many public places anyway).  So you need faster lenses - 2.8 zooms or similar or faster primes - to keep the noise down (on FF it would be easy - just get the 24-105L).  Which lengths depends on how big the spaces are, how far away you are likely to be, and how big the groups of people are you're wanting to photograph.  Canon has four excellent primes with IS that may be suitable - 24mm, 28mm, 35mm and 100mm - but whether they or the various stabilized 2.8 zooms would be better really depends on the situation.   If you're trying to capture a large space, on a 60D 24mm won't be wide enough, but for portraits of a couple of people it could be too wide; in an apartment, on the other hand, unless you want head shots etc., 100mm will likely be too long.

Depending on what outdoor lenses you have, you may want to consider taking some into a typical space (if there is such a thing) you have in mind and experiment with different focal lengths to see what you're likely to want to use.   

jdflute

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2013, 09:18:36 AM »
I agree with SDSR,
I have just upgraded from a 40D to FF and have the 100mm macro L, it's way too long for indoors.
I also have a 50mm f1.4 which is great but on the 40D still too long for my liking, even in a big house.
I would suggest looking for a wide fast lens, try looking at the Tokina 16-28mm f2.8, or maybe a Canon 16-35mm f2.8L

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2013, 10:05:09 AM »
I don't shoot with flash, therefore, f2.8 might not be enough for crop(60D).

New Sigma 35mm or Canon 50mm f1.4 will help - gaining couple f-stops for indoor.
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DennyF

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2013, 10:50:53 AM »
When I had a T3i, I used Canon's 28mm f2.8 IS for indoor work.  But as others have said, even f2.8 has its limits. 

seamonster

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2013, 11:28:17 AM »
40mm pancake. or the 35mm samyang if you're on a budget or the the 35mm sigma if you're not.

85mm is a little too long indoors unless you're always shooting in bigger spaces.
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TBenson

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2013, 11:51:14 AM »
Here's another idea to consider, depending on what lenses you already own: get a 6D. 
 - Since it is full frame, it will make your lenses wider
 - The 6D will work better in low light than your current camera so you can use a faster shutter speed

I'd like to add a lens for indoor use -- things like family & friend gatherings, indoor events (graduations, arts, etc.). I generally end up not being really up close to the subject. And generally don't use a tripod.

I have an crop-frame camera (60D like you) and always find myself backing up into a wall.  Unless you only want headshots or only shoot indoors in auditoriums/gymnasiums, forget the 100mm (I love my 85mm 1.8 but it does not get enough use).

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2013, 11:51:14 AM »

distant.star

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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2013, 12:08:46 PM »
.
Two thoughts:

1. In my mind, the only thing that really works well as an "indoor" lens is the Canon 17-55. People gathered round a dining room table and such need the wide angle that lens provides. In 35mm equivalent terms it's a 27-88 on a crop body so it just barely gets to wide angle. It's a great constant f/2.8 lens and has a reasonably good IS. If that won't work for your more public space pictures I'm not sure there is a good alternative except two lenses.

2. Consider using a monopod. They're simple, unobtrusive and do a great job adding stability.
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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2013, 12:20:42 PM »
+1 to the folks talking flash, as even at f1.4, your tremor will impact the shots.  Honestly, in some situations I'd add a flash with a Rogue flashbender on it.  In other situations, bump the iso up even higher.  I would recommend you rent/hire the tamron, or consider the 6D for a little more money.

I know tripods can be a royal pain to setup and tear down, but I wonder how a mono-pod would work with your tremor.  Treat it like a walking stick, set the camera to 2 second self timer, and hold a strap while it takes the actual picture.  Either that or one of the basic glidecam setups, with a wireless trigger on your other hand, using live view to frame things.
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Re: Indoor Lens recommendations?
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2013, 12:20:42 PM »