Two more primes to go with my 40mm pancake lens

Started Jan 28, 2013 | Questions thread
Forrest Forum Pro • Posts: 14,666
Re: For travelling, one fast prime

Spunky8 wrote:

rsn48 wrote:

If you research fast lenses, you'll find that f2.8 is considered a fast lens, it isn't. In low light not using flash, you want a fast lens, f2, f1.8, f1.4, f1.2 are all desirable. I took my 35mm f2 with me on a cruise and I used it the majority of the time, even in bright conditions. But in low light, I found myself pining for a faster lens, like my 50mm f1.4 Siggy.

I"m giving serious thoughts to the new Sigma 35mm f1.4; I really could have used that on my trip. I'd love to have the Canon 24mm f1.4, whatever version but they are pricey for just travel snaps.

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Hind sight is always better than foresight, except for lost opportunity costs.

Why not adjust ISO? Unless you're going for the bokeh---extreme out of focus background---I see no need for a 1.4 (or so) lens, as ISO can easily be adjusted to accommodate a slower lens.

Yes, 1.4, 1.2, 1.8 lenses do have a purpose, but they are no longer needed if extreme low light capture is what you're after.

That's perhaps a little bit myopic.  It sounds as if you're able to do what you need with lenses that don't open wider than f/2, and it's good to find yourself "in the zone" like that.  But it shouldn't come as a surprise that other people shoot differently, in different situations, with different subject matter.  And you appear to be giving out advice, above and beyond your own experiences and opinions.

Clearly there are a lot of reasons a person might want a fast lens, and you've hit on one of them.  Often a wider aperture and a higher ISO achieve the same thing, which is getting more light into your exposure.  They're both finite, and in marginal situations you need to pull every tool out of your bag to get the job done.  Also, both of these approaches have drawbacks that affect image quality in different ways, some being more objectionable to some people than others.

If it's dark enough that framing (or even just focus) starts to become a problem, getting more light through the viewfinder is a pretty wonderful thing.

From my own experience, I can say that being after extreme low-light capture, in a situation where my exposure time is limited, having an f/1.4 lens is so helpful I wouldn't do without it.

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