Primes vs Zoom + Flash

Started Sep 5, 2011 | Discussions thread
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DerStig
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Primes vs Zoom + Flash
Sep 5, 2011

I have a T2i and up until 2 weeks ago, I used it with the kit lens 18-55, the extra zoom I had bought a year ago 55-250, and the 430II (amazing flash btw). I mainly shoot indoors and after trying out my friend's 30mm sigma, I was simply amazed with what F1.4 gives you without the use of flash.

Fast forward 2 weeks, I now have my own 30mm and another 85mm Sigma 1.4 I purchased with it.

I have been having numerous issues with both of these lenses with the biggest one being the sharpness of the image. If I use a flash with my 2 previous lenses, the picture looks so much sharper, its amazing. With the sigma lenses, yes I don't need a flash and I can shoot ISO 200-400 (vs before even with 1600, I just couldn't see anything), but the pictures are not that sharp. For example, if I take a picture of my daughter, the lines of her face are not clear. If I use my 55-250 instead of the 85mm prime with a flash, the picture looks much much better. But obviously, it doesn't look as natural.

I guess my point is, if I'm having to use this flash even with these primes, did I waste $1,500? I can see the 30mm of being use, but 85mm is certainly very difficult indoors without a flash. And if I do use a flash, there is simply no difference between the prime and the zoom lens to my eyes. Obviously to a professional who pixel peeps there might be difference, but realize that this is a lens I am going to use rarely just to get closeups of my daughter.

I don't know if I should keep these lenses or return them.

By the way, the light in my apartment is very bad. Even in daytime, I can shoot with 1/60-125, F1.4, ISO 200 with evening 1/30, F1.4, ISO 400-800. And these numbers are with PRIMES, if I used a zoom lens (I rented the 24-70 L before), taking a picture is simply impossible without a flash unless I open all my windows and remove all the curtains!

I need some advice here from the pros here. I hardly use the far tele end of that 55-250 zoom lens, should I just return all these lenses, sell my 2 lenses, and get the 28-135 which pretty much covers all my focal length usage?

I have no problem spending a bit, as long as it pays back, if I have to use a flash after spending all this money, to me that's not mission accomplished.

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