Do we still "need" fast lenses ?

Started 5 months ago | Discussions thread
jfriend00 Forum Pro • Posts: 12,318
Re: Do we still "need" fast lenses ?

HeavyDuty wrote:

jfriend00 wrote:

HeavyDuty wrote:

I think much of the current fascination with shallow DOF is an unintended consequence of the film era. Back in the day our ability to shoot at high ISO was very limited, and this led to the development of fast glass - especially for professional use. We all became accustomed to seeing razor-thin DOF, and it became a preference for many. (I’m guilty of this myself.)

With the Z, I personally think a combination of “normal” speed lenses (f/4 zooms and f/1.8 primes) plus one or two faster lenses for special situations will serve me (and my back) the best. I’m waiting to see what the roadmapped 50/1.2S looks like, it would probably be all I need for available darkness shooting.

I predict a gradual return to deep DOF once again being in widespread fashion now that bodies are capable of extreme sensitivity with amazing results. Ansel Adams and his Group f/64 compatriots are likely watching with glee.

I think subject isolation from the background is more than a fad. It's a photographic style that adds emphasis and perceived sharpness to the subject (particularly when it's a person) when out in front of a nicely blurred background. It's certainly not the only way to shoot a subject, but it's not a fad style that is going to just disappear either.

Ansel is most known for his landscapes where you certainly want as much DOF as you can get. I doubt it's landscape shooters who are wishing they had a faster lens.

I don’t think it’s a fad at all, but it’s an outgrowth of fast lenses that were needed for slow emulsions. I rather like it, and use it frequently.

Regardless of why we came to ever have fast lenses (which is irrelevant to whether we still want fast lenses or not), my point was that they can be used to create useful photographic effects that enhance certain types of images that using a higher ISO does not do which is the question the OP originally asked.

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