Have the 16mm Pancake and 18-55 kit, what do I need to fill the gaps?

Started Sep 18, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Have the 16mm Pancake and 18-55 kit, what do I need to fill the gaps?
Sep 18, 2012

So I am a VERY amateur photographer, just starting to get the hang of things. I have had a Sony NEX-3 for a year or so, love the camera. I have the 18-55 f3.5-f5.6 and the 16mm f2.8 pancake lens. I know the fundamentals of what different lenses do and mean, but I don't really know in the real world what they are like to use and what I would want.

I am trying to decide if I need another lens, something like a fast prime. I find that in bright light I do fine with the zoom lens, but sometimes wish I could get a shallower depth of field. In low light I have trouble getting a fast enough shutter without cranking the ISO way up. The Pancake is great for bringing to parties and whatnot because it is compact and does better in low light, but it is so wide angle that sometimes it is limiting. I also bring it whenever I need a smaller camera, and find that the super wide angle is a problem sometimes.

I have my honeymoon in Hawaii and a birthday coming up, so I am thinking I should maybe invest in a new lens to fill the gaps, but I am not sure what I should get.

There are a few options out there I have looked at, main ones being the Sony 50mm f1.8 (equivalent to about 75mm full frame) which is fairly large and may be too zoomed for general use, and the sigma 30mm f2.8 that is a nice shortish pancake but isn't really any faster then the 16mm. There is also the zeiss 24mm f1.8 that would be ideal, but that is $1400, not something I am willing to spend given my (lack of) expertise. Finally there is the new Sony 35mm 1.8 that is coming in December, but that doesn't help me on the honeymoon (November) but might be ideal after that. Maybe I should be looking at adapted lenses instead? No idea where to start there...

So all you photographers out there, what lens type do you find yourself using most? I tend to take pictures mostly of friends at parties, and on vacations/sightseeing. I would love to have the right suite of lenses to take to Hawaii in November as well, but I might already have what I need there? What would be my best options? What do I need?

Thanks for the help!

Sony Alpha NEX-3
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