Canon 50mm f/1.4 Aperture / Low light question.

Started Aug 31, 2008 | Discussions thread
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dotborg Veteran Member • Posts: 8,251
Re: Canon 50mm f/1.4 Aperture / Low light question.

Creambun wrote:

Hello, I have a 50mm f/1.4 lens on a canon 450d/XSi and finding
little use for it.

The main reason I bought it was to take photos in low light
situations without having to use a flash (especially for shots of
babies etc...)

The 2x issues I have is I have to stand a long way back to be able to
fit anything useful into the frame. I understand this is due to the
1.6 crop factor but wasn't expecting it to be this bad.

You might consider the Canon 35mm f/1.4 or Sigma 30mm f/1.4 or maybe even the Canon 24mm f/1.4.

the other more annoying factor is when shooting in low light I set
the aperture to 1.4 but the depth of field is so shallow I find a
persons eyes / nose may be very sharp but their ears are completely
out of focus.

It's very tricky to get good photos with such a narrow depth of field; it's very important to get the focus on exactly what you intend, like the eyes. If the eyes are in focus then such a photograph can be really beautiful, if they are not then it'll just look wrong. You can also exploit the narrow DOF to bring attention to a specific item, like a cigarette in someone's fingers.

Everything is in focus at around f/2.8 but I might as
well use my 17-55mm f/2.8 instead.

Honestly, if that's what works for you then that's what you should use. There's also the benefit of image stabilization so you can at least minimize camera shake; something not available with the primes.

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Whoever said 'a picture is worth a thousand words' was a cheapskate.

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