Help. Which lens first ?

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by charvelj, Sep 8, 2007.

  1. charvelj

    charvelj
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    I've been playing and learning with my Nikon D40 for the past month and I am now ready to extend my lens range. I am going to be be taking shots of my sons band and was thinking about the 50mm f1.8 d but having read this forum I am wondering if I would be better with the 55-200 AF-S VR as I like the idea of longer focal length for when I'm not shooting low light. Would the AF and VR help in low light ? Or would you stick to the manual focus 50mm for this application. Eventually I will buy both lenses but, which would you go for first ? Spare cash at the moment is an issue as the wife would go spare if she sees more cash going out on non essential items :rolleyes:

    My old camera (which got me into all this) was the Fuji S5600. You can see example of my gig photos at www.myspace.com/accolade Any advice would be gratefully received.
     
  2. jonnypb

    jonnypb
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    if cash is an issue at the min and you'll eventually end up buying both i'd go for the cheaper 50mm 1st
     
  3. Yandros

    Yandros
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    Go for the 50 1.8 first. VR is about as much use as a chocolate teapot for low light moving subjects. The only problem with the 50mm is that the field of view is quite tight - regard it as a portrait lens, but it's likely to be fine for band shooting. You might also consider the 70-300VR rather than the 55-200VR if you intend to shoot wildlife.
     
  4. charvelj

    charvelj
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    Thanks for your replies.

    I had kind of decided on the 50mm but wondered if the VR would have made that much difference in low (no) light situations. I also thought that the auto focus might help as the D40 does not have a focusing aid for manual focusing.

    How difficult is it to manual focus in low light with the 50mm on a D40 ?

    Any tips here would be appreciated.
     
  5. Yandros

    Yandros
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    In very low light situations, VR allows you to drop the shutter speed below to level you would normally need to avoid camera shake. For a 50mm lens, you'll normally need 1/60th of a second or better without VR. With VR you can drop the shutter speed to as low as 1/8th of a second, which is superb for static scenes. For a band performing though, you'll need AT LEAST 1/60th (probably 1/125th) to freeze the action, so VR serves very little purpose.

    I have to confess to not having tried MF on my 50mm 1.8, but if I get a chance this evening I'll give it a go!
     

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