Wedding Lens

Aitch

Standard Member
My daughter is getting married in a few months’ time. She does not want a big wedding and in total only about 25 people. She wants me to video some of the ceremony etc. Most of the video will be indoors, quite well lit.

I have a Nikon DSLR 3300, currently with a Nikon 18mm-55mm DX VR lens. I am wondering as to whether a slightly larger/ faster lens would be more beneficial to the video I want to take.

Possible choices are: Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-140mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Lens or Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Lens. Don’t mind other compatible makes, but any help or advice as to which way to go would be appreciated.
Thanks.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
First off, are you regularly and competently making videos you love with your dslr?
 

Aitch

Standard Member
Have made videos before. Several from Canadian holidays a few years back, and using Magix to edit. Can fumble my way around so end result is reasonable. However haven't done one for a couple of years so probably rusty.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Did you do them with your DSLR though? I ask as it's so different from a camcorder, especially on a lower end camera. You'll need to really concentrate entirely on this, not enjoying you and your daughters day.
 

Aitch

Standard Member
The Canadian videos were done using the DSLR. Quite happy with results. The camcorder I have is a JVC Hi 8, a good few years old. I have taken indoor videos with the DSLR. I take your point and can see what your asking me to consider. I don't want to spoil the day. What options have I? I ask because I am only just coming back into the Video aspect, and realising so much has changed after a few years away.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Is there another member of the family with either their own equipment or could learn yours?

Other than that can you visit the venue to get an idea of the length of lens that would be any use and the light levels? You'll definitely need an external mic, probably a Rhode.
 

D'@ve

Well-known Member
I've done this at daughters' weddings and it's not as easy as you think. You can't completely avoid being emotionally involved in the ceremony and associated events and it's very easy to forget an important setting, set something wrong, SD card, battery, lens, ISO, anything really that's normally second nature. And you'll be tempted to take photos too - another potential complication.

So if you feel you must do it, practice beforehand and try to get someone less closely involved as backup (if you're not employing a professional). Doing this alone for your daughter is a risky business!
 

Aitch

Standard Member
Daughter's getting married in Madrid, where she lives and works. The venue is fine with plenty of light but there's no one else who is able to use my camera equipment. Take your point how easy it is to make a mistake, and agree about practice as I have a few months of time on my side. Just wondering also which is the better type of lens to consider.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Can you work out how far away you need to be? Reason I ask is I think a good old fashioned 50mm 1.8 might suit well and just zoom with your feet. If not then take a look at the 18-200 secondhand, I always had good luck with that for it’s price. Especially secondhand price.
 

severe dainjah

Well-known Member
You'll need to really concentrate entirely on this, not enjoying you and your daughters day.
Having filmed two weddings for friends now, I cannot stress this point enough - to do a good job, you really need to focus solely on your video task and will therefore sacrifice a lot of your involvement in ‘the day’.

I used my dslr both times, first time I just had a single camera and mounted it on a tripod. I thought it would be a case of set up, press record and leave it - but in reality you need to adjust/change position to ensure a more entertaining output. Great fun filming b-roll footage though at a wedding.

Second time I used three cameras, two borrowed camcorders on tripods with fixed positions and I had my dslr handheld and moved around to get close ups. Second time was def better, I had much more footage to use and mixes of different angles and close ups - editing took far longer however, and using different cameras meant the footage output is all slightly different (can probably fix post processing if you know how).

Also would agree that you will want a dedicated mic set up to catch the audio and plenty of memory/batteries for the camera/s.

Worth considering using go pros/mobiles dotted around to capture alt angles of things. I also set up my iPhone to capture a stop motion of crowd taking their seats at the reception.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Sorry we keep banging on about this and I really do appreciate why you want to do this :) There's a reason good wedding photographers/videographers cost a lot, it takes a lot of experience and kit. I wouldn't touch a wedding with a barge pole. My kit's definitely good enough for stills but I'd need a second set and with mine that would be £10k plus for a camera and a couple of lenses.
Hopefully we're just being a downer because we appreciate how important this is for you.
 

Aitch

Standard Member
No downer approach taken, just wanted advice and guidance so well pleased with the comments and advice. Lots to think about. Thanks
 

MartinH32

Well-known Member
Sorry we keep banging on about this and I really do appreciate why you want to do this :) There's a reason good wedding photographers/videographers cost a lot, it takes a lot of experience and kit. I wouldn't touch a wedding with a barge pole. My kit's definitely good enough for stills but I'd need a second set and with mine that would be £10k plus for a camera and a couple of lenses.
Hopefully we're just being a downer because we appreciate how important this is for you.
Amen to this. I'm a full time wedding photographer and if I was starting out again - I'd be thinking twice. Now though, 13 years and 600 weddings in, it's a fun job!
 

snerkler

Distinguished Member
I personally think this is a bad idea, this is your daughter's wedding day and you will want to enjoy it to the fullest and watching it through the viewfinder of a camera/on the LCD screen will not allow you to do this, let alone having to concentrate on what to shoot.

My recommendation is to get a guest to do it, that's what we did for ours. For the speeches we just had it set up on a tripod in the one position. Wasn't the greatest quality video in the world but captured everything and no-one really missed out.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
Hopefully she's married by now :)
 

Aitch

Standard Member
No, not married yet. October. Some good points made in the responses and I take onboard what you're saying. I don't take offence at being a downer, just want to understand if it's possible with my ideas of lens, and whether I have the ability to do it. She doesn't like fuss or pomp and ceremony so it's all low key. I still haven't decided what is the best to do, or how to do it. At least I have a couple of months to decide. Who knows, with a purportedly rise in Covid as well as airline problems we, might not even get there. However, we remain positive.
 

MartinH32

Well-known Member
It's very likely you lens and camera combination will work but there are caveats. If it's bright then you'll probably find you're 'ok'. If it's not as bright as you hoped you can end up with noise on the video as it's a crop sensor (no bad thing in itself but it's on an entry level camera). You could also (unless you manually focus) it may 'hunt' for focus, especially if you've any back lighting. As mentioned above I'm a pro wedding photographer but I have done video too. When I've done this I've used three cameras. They are full frame cameras, two have 35mm lenses on (50(ish)mm on a crop sensor) and my main a 24-70 f2.8. All are fast lenses which work well in low light. If you do go ahead with this (and I really wouldn't as you'll not enjoy the day) try out a 50mm lens and see if it works for you.
 

snerkler

Distinguished Member
It's very likely you lens and camera combination will work but there are caveats. If it's bright then you'll probably find you're 'ok'. If it's not as bright as you hoped you can end up with noise on the video as it's a crop sensor (no bad thing in itself but it's on an entry level camera). You could also (unless you manually focus) it may 'hunt' for focus, especially if you've any back lighting. As mentioned above I'm a pro wedding photographer but I have done video too. When I've done this I've used three cameras. They are full frame cameras, two have 35mm lenses on (50(ish)mm on a crop sensor) and my main a 24-70 f2.8. All are fast lenses which work well in low light. If you do go ahead with this (and I really wouldn't as you'll not enjoy the day) try out a 50mm lens and see if it works for you.
I’d have thought 50mm on a crop body would give too narrow a field of view for a “do-it-all” focal length?

With recommended video shutter speeds being 1/50 or 1/60 and then shooting at f1.8 I can’t see noise being an issue? Might want an ND filter for outdoor use though if wanting to shoot wide open.
 

MartinH32

Well-known Member
I’d have thought 50mm on a crop body would give too narrow a field of view for a “do-it-all” focal length?

With recommended video shutter speeds being 1/50 or 1/60 and then shooting at f1.8 I can’t see noise being an issue? Might want an ND filter for outdoor use though if wanting to shoot wide open.
No what I was meaning was the equivelant to a 35mm on full frame sensor. I use a 35mm on full frame and it's pretty good and gives a good field of view - and doesn't distort like wider lenses - but again it's all dependent on the look you want as we all shoot differently. As for noise, it could be an issue on the lenses he originally mentioned depending on the room and of course it's a base model camera which may not be as good at focusing. Everything needs to be tried out first. Obviously at 1.8 it wouldn't be but depending then on subject distance you need to be concerned about DoF. There will be compromises which ever way you look at it I guess. Of course I could be over analysing this lol.
 

ashenfie

Well-known Member
No what I was meaning was the equivelant to a 35mm on full frame sensor. I use a 35mm on full frame and it's pretty good and gives a good field of view - and doesn't distort like wider lenses - but again it's all dependent on the look you want as we all shoot differently. As for noise, it could be an issue on the lenses he originally mentioned depending on the room and of course it's a base model camera which may not be as good at focusing. Everything needs to be tried out first. Obviously at 1.8 it wouldn't be but depending then on subject distance you need to be concerned about DoF. There will be compromises which ever way you look at it I guess. Of course I could be over analysing this lol.
I don’t think noise is the issue but shooting at 1.8 the pictures may well be soft. I general try and be two stops up from a lenses max setting. The is where you need kit you know inside out.
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
I don’t think noise is the issue but shooting at 1.8 the pictures may well be soft. I general try and be two stops up from a lenses max setting. The is where you need kit you know inside out.

This is where you need kit that performs wide open or why have it.
 

snerkler

Distinguished Member
This is where you need kit that performs wide open or why have it.
This, all my fast primes are sharp wide open and in some situations too sharp. My Samyang 50mm f1.4 FE II and Sony 35mm f1.8 have great sharpness across the frame. I've never actually tested my Sigma 85mm f1.4 for corner sharpness but it's bitingly sharp in the centre.
 

MartinH32

Well-known Member
As with any lens, it's generally assumed around f5.6 to f8 will give the best corner to corner sharpness. My concern with filming wide open ie. f1.8 even with a reasonably wide lens is the depth of field you are going to have. Are you wanting the registrars or the couple in focus? Wide open may not give you enough DoF to acheive that and stepping down a couple of stops then can lead to focus hunting on cheaper lens / sensors. Fine line and needs to be tried out and experimented with.
 

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ashenfie

Well-known Member
This is where you need kit that performs wide open or why have it.
While very expensive lens will be able at fully open it will always perform better by simply providing more light. A common FF portrait lens in the 85mm F1.4, now if you at 1.8 then depth of field is only 13cm. Now at f4 you would have 29cm, further the extra stops means the lens is sharper.

The solution is make sure you have enough light or the equipment to add light as necessary (fill light).
 

MaryWhitehouse

Well-known Member
We're going off topic whilst also proving why not to try. This is now some very serious kit with a lot of knowledge and experience to use it.
 

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