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Old 11-29-2008, 07:15 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Wide angle lense advice

Hey camera guys,

I've got a project and I need the perfect tool. Any advice you can offer will be most appreciated.

The camera body will be a digital Canon Rebel XT (fingers crossed that it will make it here all the way from Hawaii).

The subject will be 40-80 glossy 2" toy soldiers arranged in groups from 10" to 3' long and as wide as 10-12". In other words, I have a problem of combining a need for a macro-type close up with a need for a pretty serious depth of focus.

Lighting is provided by "daylight" florescent(sp?) table lamps.

I think the backdrop will be something like a white box with three sides and a bottom.

Questions:

1. What am I looking for as far as lense measurements? I don't want a fish eye experience, so I am thinking something in the 28-35mm range, right?

2. What brands, aside from Canon, should I consider? My instinct is to keep it Canon, but I am open to suggestions.

3. What is it going to cost me to get a medium to high quality lense to serve this purpose?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

Cheers,
Drum
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Old 11-29-2008, 07:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Drum,

You may want to rent various lenses and find out which works best for you prior to dropping a huge chunk of change on one.

Hammersmith and Finsec listed some pretty good rental places in their thread in the members section.

As far as glass goes, Sigma makes some good macro lenses.
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Old 11-29-2008, 08:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Old 11-29-2008, 08:17 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Something to consider that most of us don't realize... with Digital SLR's their is a magnification on the focal length of approximately 1.5x... so when you have a 100mm lens it's actually almost like a 150mm on a 35mm SLR... so a 28-35mm wide angle is going to be more like a 35mm-50mm wide angle. Now they are making 10mm-20mm wide angel lesnes to make up for this "magnification" effect.

Definitely rent a lens if you can. Azzy might be able to help you out with that as I think he did a mail order rental of a lens for one of the big EMR games this year. Otherwise go to a good camera store and try something out.

It would suck to order something and not have be even close to what you need, especially with the price of lenses now.

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Old 12-02-2008, 12:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Old 12-02-2008, 12:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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No... but thanks for the advice.

I am aware of the magnification aspects of digital SLR's, but like most of the ads and magazines, I am stuck in my 35mm equivalent terminology.

So what I am looking for is a lense that would have been about 28-35mm in 35mm film terms.

I understand that Canon film lenses are useable on a Canon digital, but I wonder if there are any problems with the conversions, aside from the magnification thing.

I suppose that I should stick to DSLR specific wide angle lenses for the best results, yes?

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Old 12-02-2008, 12:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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No, you don't need to stick with DSLR specific lenses.. just know that the magnification is there and will therefore change the image.

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Old 12-02-2008, 12:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Trouble is, how does one find make a 28mm lense, with 1.5 mag factor, if there are (presumably) none available for film cameras in say 14mm?

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Old 12-02-2008, 01:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Here's what I would do if you have the time and access to a camera store with good selection of equipment.

Layout what you are going to photograph.... use a tape measure and measure the width of what you are shooting. Remember that width. GO to camera store, ask to see several wide angle lenses. Layout your tape measure on the counter exteneded to the length you need. Start looking through the camera with said lens (I don't care if it's a Nikon) just do this until you can view what you need to view from a distance that works.

If they have a lens that works in stock for your camera, grab it up. If you can rent one, so much the better. Hell if they will let you do a test before you buy with a completely different camera grab it, especially if you don't think this will be taking very many of these pictures.

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Old 12-02-2008, 01:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Yeah, I forgot about the rental suggestion. I gotta find a place around here that does that.

In truth, I only need the wide angle for this one, rather extensive project.

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