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Basic kit must haves


When I bought my DSLR (Fuji S3 Pro) I also bought a Tamron 18-200 lens. One day I tried my 35mm film camera lens, a Nikkor 35-80 and was stunned by the image quality it gave me. I seldom ever used the Tamron again, as the Nikkor became my everyday lens. After about 3 - 3 1/2 years, I bought a Sigma 10-20 and had a great time learning about using it. The short advice is, don't rush to spend money, learn how to use your original gear first. (You don't have to spend 3 1/2 years with one lens! Smile) Later still, I added a Nikkor 70-300 to the rucksack. Somewhere along the line, I got a Nikkor 50mm F1.8 which is great in low light situations. I also use it with extension tubes for macro work.

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Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
1 Nov 2012 9:38PM

Quote:I must be the only person who thinks a 50mm on a FF is a good combination


On full frame it is a good combination Smile

Indoors using my Kit zoom (12-50mm) on the OMD it very rarely gets used at 50 mm(x2 crop), its more in the range of 12-35mm.
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
1 Nov 2012 10:11PM
And part of my reason for getting a flash unit and a meter.

Learn to get the best from the kit lens before extending your glass, and get the best out of the lens by adding a flash.

A lot can be done with a single flash unit, the meter will help you to get the best out of it while learning at the same time, meters are good in ambient light as well.

And at the end of the day a flash and a meter makes for a very useful addition to any kit bag.
779HOB
2 1.1k United Kingdom
1 Nov 2012 10:47PM

Quote:On full frame it is a good combination


Yea!
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
1 Nov 2012 11:04PM
I think I purchase all my 35mm film slr`s with a 50mm and it was the most used lens.

Other than that something of around 40mm, attached to my fixed lens range finders Smile

I don`t own a 50mm prime for digital, closest I have is a 45mm and this is mostly used outdoors.
RobboB e2
8 90 United Kingdom
2 Nov 2012 3:58PM
I think if I read Pete's suggestion correctly the 50mm was more about the access to a wider aperture and narrow depth of field than the focal length. For the OPs type of photography that makes a lot of sense to me
2 Nov 2012 4:11PM
Thank you everybody for all the hints and tips and advice- it has been an eye opener for me, while I thought I'd get loads of different suggestions (because I'm sure that everybody has different ideas of what is essential!) I was supprised about the number of people saying stick with what you've got for the time being!
I am going to take that advice for now, paul morgan, I have just brought a flash and got my eye on a lightmeter on ebay, so am going to commit, for the time being, to learning about and experimenting with lighting- which is an aspect of photography that interests me, so a good starting point I think!.... not to mention that I doubt I'll be getting out and about much in the winter months!
Thank you all for the positive comments on my PF- I'm sure a lot of you are just being kind, but it has boosted my confidence a fair bit!
Jestertheclown
6 6.6k 242 England
2 Nov 2012 4:24PM

Quote:Thank you all for the positive comments on my PF- I'm sure a lot of you are just being kind,

I doubt it!

Don't be so quick to put yourself down. There's a lot of good stuff in your pf.

Quote:I doubt it!

Don't be so quick to put yourself down. There's a lot of good stuff in your pf.



I second that Brendan
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
2 Nov 2012 10:36PM

Quote:I am going to take that advice for now, paul morgan, I have just brought a flash and got my eye on a lightmeter on ebay, so am going to commit, for the time being, to learning about and experimenting with lighting


I think you have made a good choice Nicola, its loads of fun playing with lighting and learning.

There will be plenty of help here as well, there`s even a group.

http://www.ephotozine.com/groups/strobist-34

There`s plenty of strobist lighting blogs as well, here`s one I know of.

http://www.damianmcgillicuddy.com/journal/tag/strobist
5 Nov 2012 10:54AM

Quote:My first piece of advice would be: Don't buy anything until you find that the lack of it is holding you back.


Very sound advice, which a lot of people have reiterated. But a cheap and handy thing to have, if you don't have one, is a shutter remote. You can have some fun with kids if you set you camera up somewhere, mark a 'photo spot' on the floor (which the camera is focused on!) and then get some self-portraits with the kids. Not that I've done this, but my auntie, who is into this kind of thing, does this all the time and I love seeing her facebook updates of her and the kids. Shutter releases are good for low light, macro etc too. Much easier than a timer, and I paid 4.50 for mine on ebay.
23 Nov 2012 6:09PM
Hi I am selling a Tokina Af 100mm-300mm what is the most I will get for it?It fits a pentax slr
StrayCat e2
10 15.5k 2 Canada
23 Nov 2012 7:58PM
There is a facility on ebay where you can check recent prices that particular items have sold for.
KNS 5 106 2 United Kingdom
25 Nov 2012 11:25AM
Sigma make some great kit, Tamron, in my experience, less so. As you are using a D3000 you should keep uppermost in your mind the AF issues of these bodies - they will not AF with non S type Nikkor lenses and equivalent Sigma and others....

In all honesty the best advice seen in this long stream was reply #1 - see what's missing and find a way to buy it cheap Smile
Hi Nic. First off, your D3000 will only autofocus with lenses with a built in motor. So the 50mm you refer to would be best it if was the AF-S version. On the tripod front, I have two and use them about twice a year. However, I use my flash guns a lot. For portraits, on a crop sensor camera such as the D3000, something in the 50 to 85mm area would be about right. Bear in mind that an 85mm lens at f2.8 and a shooting distance of 2m would have a field of view of 53x36cm at the focus point and a depth of field of 6cm. Is this what you are looking for?

I'm assuming you have the 18-55mm kit lens. Try using a bit of software called ExposurePlot (free) to see which focal lengths you use most before buying a new lens. Be aware that fast lenses used wide open will have very limited depth of field. I see in your portfolio an interest in close-ups too. So, I'd think about what the shortcomings of your existing lens is before buying another one. I had a Tamron 17-50mm f2.8 for a while. Excellent optical quality, but the version with the built-in motor had slightly 'twitchy' AF for my tastes.

Probably the most important bit of kit you can buy would be an external hard disk to back up your images (about 40-60 for a decent one).

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