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Thread: Zoom lens or fixed macro lens

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    Zoom lens or fixed macro lens

    Hi all,

    I am new to photography and currently have a nikon d90 and 35mm lens.

    I am planning to buy a 2nd lens, tossing between a zoom lens or a fixed macro lens

    Feel that I need the zoom lens cause when trying to capture a picture of my dog running towards me in the park from far away, i need to crop the picture afterwards to get rid of distractions. Found that they will turn out quite blurry, not as sharp as I hope.
    Do you think is because of my lens or the specs that I use to take it?
    I use minimum of F 3 and increase the shutter speed as fast as it can go and also increase the exposure to +5 in order to obtain a bright picture with fastest shutter speed.

    and I am also interested in macro photography especially flower

    do not have the budget to buy the two of them at the moment
    zoom lens: Tamron 18-200mm f3.5-6.3 XR Di-II Mot Nik
    macro lens: Tamron 90mm f2.8 Di Macro Nik

    Sorry for rambling on and on.

    Thanks a lot. I really appreciate the help.

    Mocha2204
    Nikon D90 + Nikkor 35mm f1.8

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    can't remember Tannin's Avatar
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    Hi Mocha.

    There are a few things you can do to improve.

    • Setting the exposure to +5 will SLOW your shutter speed, not make it faster. Set it to 0. No plus, no minus. Leave it there all the time for now.
    • For the sort of shot you describe, put your camera in APERTURE PRIORITY and set it to f/8 unless you have a good reason not to. If in doubt, the two most important rules in photography are f/8 and be there.
    • The camera itself will then decide what shutter speed is required. With your 35mm lens, anything over about 1/60th of a second will give sharp results.
    • Notice that your blurry shots are probably caused by bad focus, not too slow a shutter speed. Stopping down to f/8 will help with that.
    • Try using the CENTRE-POINT ONLY for focus instead of letting the camera select whatever point it likes (usually the wrong one).
    • In the short-term, an 18-200mm zoom lens will be more use to you. But it isn't much good at all for macro.
    • In the longer term, you will learn more and learn faster with a prime lens - the 90mm macro you mention would be a good choice. And, when you have reached a good standard of proficiency, you will still have a good 90mm macro lens to use alongside the other lenses you will buy at some stage, where with the 18-200 zoom, you will just have the does-everything-badly lens that you have now outgrown.
    • Not everyone will agree with me. If in doubt, just remember - they are wrong and I am right. Especially and particularly if we disagree about whose turn it is for the next shout.
    Tony

    People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.

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    Hi Tannin,

    Thank you very much for sparing your time to write such a detailed guide.

    I will follow your guide and have a go again at the park.
    and will post some uncropped and cropped pictures for your comments.

    Once again, thank you, i really appreciate it

    Mocha

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    Cheers Mocha. We will look forward to your results!

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    Tony you will have to retract your previous comments about people not listening to your advice

    Mocha just remember that you can shoot anything with a macro lens - for example many people use a lens of that length for portraits - although the Tamron may not do so well with fast moving subjects due to its reasonable slow auto-focus.

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    Here are some today's products

    In "A" mode, set f/8, exposure to 0.0 and i also locked the focus point in the middle.
    CC welcomed
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    Woops...
    didnt upload the rest

    the picture above was cropped and the pictures below arent.

    They look pretty ok due to the need to resize to be able to upload.
    However, I am not satisfied when looking at them using my 23 inch monitor.

    Suggestions are greatly welcomed
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Quote Originally Posted by maccaroneski View Post
    Tony you will have to retract your previous comments about people not listening to your advice
    I am surprised to be getting into trouble over saying that - I could have sworn at the time that no-one was listening!

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    I personally would go for a Nikon 18 - 200 Zoom and a set of Kenko extension tubes.

    This combination will cover most of your needs until you decide which genre of photography you want to study in mere detail.

    Whatever you choose just keep shooting and posting.
    Cheers
    Darey

    Nikon user, Thick skinned and wanting to improve, genuine C & C welcomed.

    Photographs don't lie ! - Anonymous Liar

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    Mocha, there is something going on here. These pictures are all a bit blurry, and I don't think it's focus problens because they are blurry all over fairly evenly. Nor can we blame camera movement - at 35mm and 1/100th of a second, you'd have to try pretty hard to move the camera enough to get this amount of blur.

    Are you using a "protective" filter? over your lens?

    Is the lens an old second-hand one?

    OK, it's a dull day (which does not help) and it's difficult to focus exactly on the dog, but neither of these explain your results.

    Come on Nikon people, give me a hand here - why are Mocha's pictures blurry all over? Why does his EXIF seem to say ISO 2500!?!?

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    If you look at the time of day it says 4:49pm . It is very dark at that time of day at this time of year.
    If f8 is being used at 1/100 sec you would need ISO 2500 to get an exposure.

    I'm guessing now but I think you would be lucky to get any light on the sensor under these conditions with those settings.

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    Good point, Darey! Mocha, you need light to take pictures!

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    A friend of mine help me set my ISO setting to AUTO max 3200.

    so it is best to take pictures of moving objects when it is day light? I will try this again this weekend..
    Do you recommend buying flash units?

    and in "A" mode, is there a way to use the flash? or is flash only available in auto and macro mode?

    Thank you all for responses, appreciate it


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    I also use a uv protecting lens in front of my lens.
    I bought my lens from ebay and its new.

    Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by mocha2204 View Post
    A friend of mine help me set my ISO setting to AUTO max 3200.

    so it is best to take pictures of moving objects when it is day light? I will try this again this weekend..
    Do you recommend buying flash units?

    and in "A" mode, is there a way to use the flash? or is flash only available in auto and macro mode?

    Thank you all for responses, appreciate it

    I don't wat to sound rude, but you may need to read your manual. You can use your flash in any mode.
    And perhaps visit the New to Photography section as there is heaps of info there to help


    Tamron 90mm is a very nice lens and perfect for your flower photos and will also take lovely photos of your doggie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tannin View Post
    Mocha, there is something going on here. These pictures are all a bit blurry, and I don't think it's ..........

    Are you using a "protective" filter?
    Take that filter off and throw it away! That is your problem.

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    Tony I read a lot more than I write around here... and I have 1500 odd posts .

    Mocha I think you should spend the next couple of weeks working through the New To Photography tutorials in that section of the forum, take the dog out on a sunny day, take some shots and post them here. Don't buy any gear in the meantime.

    You will be stunned at the results, and you'll be in a much better position to determine what the next purchase should be.

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    Good advice from maccaroneski. Go with that. But throw that terrible filter away first! That weird, all-over not-quite-right look is caused by the filter. Bad filters do this. Get rid of it!
    Last edited by Tannin; 24-06-2010 at 11:18am.

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    Hi mocha!

    When you took those shots, did you use the live view mode or did you use the viewfinder?

    I would also suggest putting your ISO in manual mode, ise ISO 200 if there is sufficient ambient light, 400 and up if the shutter and aperture combo can't achieve the proper exposure. If you wan't to use auto ISO, try limiting it to 1600 only.

    Also, what brand of filter did you use? are there any scratches on the filter? Those cheap filters do degrade the quality of your pics. Try Kenko, Hoya or B+W.

    Why not check out the Nikkor 85mm f/1.8? I think its on the same price range. It's faster and sharper and better quality. Though you can't take macro shots using this. You can attach a Raynox DCR250 if you want for macro shots though.
    Nikon User
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    Strobing: SB900; Flashwave trigger III, generic gorilla pod

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    Hi,

    below are photos with and without my protective lens.
    Seems the same to me.
    I checked the protective lens, there arent scratches, just oily and i tried to clean it.
    I dont know the brand of it I am sorry but I try to get a hold of those brand filter that you named, joey
    and also thank you for your recommendation about nikkor 85mm, was not aware they are the same price range.

    Thanks everyone, i will practice more and decide to buy new gear later on


    2167a is with filter
    2169a is without filter
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