50 mm prime vs 18-55 in low lighting?

Started Oct 6, 2009 | Discussions thread
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hnn
hnn
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50 mm prime vs 18-55 in low lighting?
Oct 6, 2009

I was out early this morning at dawn in our small French town to take some beautiful street pictures, with my 500D and a 50mm 1.8 II prime lens. But since I was using Program mode, the lens was mostly wide open, and I had some problems with the depth of focus. I should have used A mode and stepped down to say 5.6.

After coming home, I asked myself the following question: Is there any differnce in DOF using a 50 mm prime stepped down to 5.6, compared to the 18-55 kit lens at 50 mm running wide open at 5.6?

Or put in another way: Is there any reason to use a 50 mm prime, compared to 18-55 kit lens at 50 mm, when I want the DOF to be as great as possible? After all, the kit lens has the advantage of IS.

The only reason I could think of to prefer the 50 mm prime is that a 1.8-lens stepped down to 5.6 is better optically than a 18-55 wide open at 5.6. But I do not know enough about lenses to understand if this is correct or not.

Please enlighten me!

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