Choosing a camera lens for low-light photography


Becky

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I got a new lens for my camera recently, and I'm really pleased with it so thought I'd share some photos and details here. I have a Nikon D3200 DSLR camera, and I have both the lens it came with (18-55mm) and a zoom lens (55-200mm) but I needed something that could deal with low-light conditions better. So ideally I needed something that can achieve a wider aperture; the 18-55mm lens goes down to f/3.5 so I needed something more in the region of f/1.8 (if you're not familiar with these terms, aperture is how wide the hole is, and the lower the f-stop the wider the hole).

I also didn't want to spend a lot - you can get better results with a lens that goes down to f/1.4 but these are a lot more expensive.

So in the end I went for the Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm f/1.8G lens and here are some of the results (taken at my brother's birthday party):

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Overall I'm really pleased! I'm still getting to grips with it, but it's nice to have an option for low-light without resorting to my phone (Samsung Galaxy S7, which does low-light well but isn't ideal).

The only downside is that there isn't a zoom so you have to zoom with your feet. I'm looking forward to testing it out in different situations, and I'll report back when I do :)
 
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V_R

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Very nice! Apart from the fact you're drinking Amstel! :p

I've been trying to use my Sony RX100 mk3 a bit more in manual mode rather than just blindly hitting the button in auto. Its a fun learning curve and when you get it right its very rewarding, and equally frustrating when you don't! haha.

It doesn't help that I don't use it as much as I should either... :blush:
 

Becky

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Apart from the fact you're drinking Amstel! :p
Wasn't me! ;)

I know what you mean about trying not to use auto mode, I'm guilty of that too. I suppose if I'm using my camera it's often because I want to record a nice time that I'm having, and if I'm having a nice time I don't want to spend 50% of it fiddling around with settings on my camera.
 

Abarbarian

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Candle picture is neat. I still have not used my Pentax out of auto mode yet :blush: but I will :rolleyes:
 

V_R

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@Becky Yeah you don't strike me as the beer/pint drinking sort tbh!

That is also very true, and sometimes the best shots are those that you catch in the moment. :)
 

Becky

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Don't get me wrong - I enjoy a beer, but I prefer things like wheat beer :cheers:

That is also very true, and sometimes the best shots are those that you catch in the moment. :)
Indeed. And it's moments like that where you can't be fiddling around with settings! I suppose with practice it would come naturally though, bit like driving a car.
 
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EvanDavis

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I know what you mean about trying not to use auto mode,
During the day with my Nikon D3300 I don't use auto to much, but during night or for darker photos I just stick it on auto. Much easier as I am to lazy to learn.
 

Becky

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Glad I'm not alone with this! I use the no flash setting a lot of the time, which is pretty much auto. Which lens do you use @EvanDavis?
 

EvanDavis

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Glad I'm not alone with this! I use the no flash setting a lot of the time, which is pretty much auto. Which lens do you use @EvanDavis?
I still use the 18-55 that came with the camera. Thought I best learn with that before I go spending money on new lenses.
 
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Has anyone seen a short artical in the Saturday papers about Kodak bringing back Ektachrome 35mil film?
Will they bring back Kodachrome to?Both were suberb.
historian
 
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Becky

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Has anyone seen a short artical in the Saturday papers about Kodak bringing back Ektachrome 35mil film?
Will they bring back Kodachrome to?Both were suberb.
historian
Nope, I hadn't heard about that. I guess they feel it will be popular otherwise they wouldn't do it!
 

Quadophile

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Nice lens! The 35mm lens on the Nikon 3200 has a crop factor of 1.5 which means the lens has an effective focal length of 52.5 making it a standard lens. You camera is good till about 800 ISO so set it at that and take picture in low light situations without the flash. You will get very pleasing results. :D
 

Becky

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@Quadophile! Long time no see! How the devil are you?!

The new lens is great, I've been really enjoying using it. Wish I'd got something like this sooner! It certainly makes taking photos of hardware for reviews easier, and looks a lot more professional IMO (eg here).
 
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Quadophile

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I am doing fine :) The pics from the link look very good.
 

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