BetterPhoto.com - Become a better photographer today!
EMAIL:
PASSWORD:
remember me:     
     


BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

To participate in the Forum, become a BetterPhoto member or Sign In.

 
Photography Question 
Jessi 

member since: 11/12/2007
 

Buy Lens & Flash? Or Better Lens But No Flash?


I am ready to buy an extra lens for my Canon Rebel xt and have decided on either the 50mm 1.8 or 1.4. I am on a budget, though, so should I go with the 1.8 and also get an external flash? Or should I go with the 1.4 and nix the flash? I typically shoot indoors and my subject is almost always my almost 1-year-old son. I have had lots of problems with shadows that have ruined photos for me, which is why I have been interested in an external flash. If you reccomend the 1.8 with a flash over the 1.4 without a flash, what flash would you suggest?

11/12/2007 12:12:24 PM

 
Jon Close
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 5/18/2000
  I'd go with the 50/1.8 and an accessory flash. While it is very cheap, plastic, and has a buzzy AF motor, the EF 50 f/1.8 II is very sharp. Don't bother getting a "protective filter" for it. A good filter will cost as much as this lens, and is apt to cause more problems (reflections, glare, flare) than it solves. ;-)Recommended flash would be the Canon 430EX, which is fully auto in all exposure modes and enables all the advanced flash features of the XTi, and has a tilt-swivel head for bounce flash to avoid the harsh shadows that direct flash creates. Third party alternatives need to be E-TTL capable, like Sigma EF-500 DG Super or Sunpak PZ40X. If looking at used flashes, you should look for Canon's -EX models (380EX, 420EX, 550EX). The digital EOS cameras like the XTi will not work with the simple TTL or A-TTL system used with Canon's film EOS cameras, so avoid Canon's -E, and -EZ series speedlights (420EZ, 430EZ, 540EZ).

11/13/2007 6:33:53 AM

 
Jessi 

member since: 11/12/2007
  Thank you so much Jon! This info is increidbly helpful. Have a grat day!

11/13/2007 6:37:19 AM

 
Julie Wall
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 6/19/2004
 
 
  Tim
Tim
Just one of a bunch of practice shots I took with new flash & lens.
© Julie Wall
Canon EOS Digital ...
 
 
Hi, Jessi...

I agree with Jon. I was in the same boat a couple of months ago and got the 1.8 and a speedlite for my XTi. I was a little hesitant about buying the lower-end prime, based on some of the reviews I'd read, but I jumped anyway, because I couldn't beat the price, and that little plastic lens is one of my favorites! I'm really careful with my lenses, so dropping it while on a shoot didn't really apply, so the plastic housing didn't bother me. And it's super light!

Now that I've got the lens and the external flash, I'm finding that the portraits I take of my kids have come out fantastic...good enough that I've got friends asking me to do their kids, families, etc. Who knew? :)

Anyway, I hope that helps, as well.

Have a good one!

11/20/2007 3:35:24 AM

 
Nora Kernisant
BetterPhoto Member

member since: 10/29/2006
  I have the same 50mm lens and flash. You might want to get a diffuser to create softer portraits. Direct flash can be harsh and diffusers will soften shadows. I have a Garyfong for my 580EX and a cheaper Sto-fen for the 430EX. You do need to adjust your settings to allow more light in when using a diffuser. I am awful at explaining technical terms but I know how to do it on my camera. Have fun!

11/20/2007 6:10:43 AM

 
Cgopal Shroti

member since: 10/18/2007
  jessie,
u have got many opinions on having 1.8 with addl flash. if I suggest f1.4 with a diffuser for side fill in because I do not think the u don't have sufficienr light from the windows or verandah ur when it is clouded. since yr target is yr young son, any small flash canon itself would be suffice to giving u more chances for getting beautiful closeups with extra speed of 1.4, particularly php0tographing WITH CAMERA on a small tripod so u can save every golden moment of the dear one with good get on.. u can creatively use flash with the help of a long flash cord bouncing light from any angle. u can use some outside pix under the sun as a fill flashlight to fill in the shadows. best of luck.

11/23/2007 1:10:39 PM

 
Cgopal Shroti

member since: 10/18/2007
  jessie,
u have got many opinions on having 1.8 with addl flash. if I suggest f1.4 with a diffuser for side fill in because I do not think the u don't have sufficient light from the windows or verandah or when it is clouded. since yr target is yr young son, any small flash canon itself would be suffice to giving u more chances for getting beautiful closeups with extra speed of 1.4, particularly php0tographing WITH CAMERA on a small tripod so u can save every golden moment of the dear one with good get on.. u can creatively use flash with the help of a long flash cord bouncing light from any angle. u can use some outside pix under the sun as a fill flashlight to fill in the shadows. best of luck.

11/23/2007 1:16:10 PM

 

To participate in the Forum, become a BetterPhoto member or Sign In.
 

Copyright 1996-2014 BetterPhoto.com, Inc. All Rights Reserved.