Which is better for street photography ?


SamHornabrook

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:06
which is better for street photography, the pentax 50mm f1.4 the tamron 17-50mm f2.8, the pentax 35mm f2.4, the pentax 40mm f2.8 ?

vrapan

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:13
I'd think the 35,40 and 50 might be a bit too tight at times? I'd get a 21mm and a 35mm especially if you want to go a tiny bit stealth and not have beer cans pointing at people

fritzthedog

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:18
Of the 3 listed - the Tamron gives you much more scope than the others although I have no personal knowledge of this lens. I find that I need to be pretty wide for street photography 20-30mm is my normal range

Carl
No matter how many lenses I have owned - I have always needed just one more

JAK

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:32
vrapan wrote:
I'd think the 35,40 and 50 might be a bit too tight at times? I'd get a 21mm and a 35mm especially if you want to go a tiny bit stealth and not have beer cans pointing at people

+1
Both the 21mm and 35mm (2.4 or 2.8 limited) are excellent lenses and will take cropping well if need be.
If you really wanted a beer can (sorry zoom) either a Sigma 10-20 or a Pentax 12-24 would be more useful than the 17-50. Why? By time you get to 50mm (which on APS-C is a short telephoto) framing and focussing become far more critical which doesn't lend itself to street. No doubt you've already got an 18-55 anyhow which isn't that different to 17-50 so you could have an experiment to see if you find that range is usable or not for street.

John
John K

SamHornabrook

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:42
is the wider apeture of the 50mm something thats needed or majorly useful in street photography, because then I could either get that or the sigma 30mm f1.4 ?

JAK

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:53
A faster lens would certainly be useful after dark.

If you wish to shoot from the hip rather than the viewfinder, the wider the lens the more chance of getting the aim right. If you are shooting people from a distance (sounds dangerous!) using the viewfinder, then a 50mm or thereabouts makes more sense. What we don't know is what your style and preferences are. Best try it with what you've got first - then you'll soon find out which focal lengths work best for you and you can begin to work out what you think you're missing. (I'm presuming you have at least the kit lens to do this?)

John
John K

Galoot

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 21:58
I would suggest that the lens dosen't matter.

For 'street photography', talent and an "eye" are needed.

B&W pictures of people just walking down the street are NOT, repeat, NOT, street photography.

Grumpy Bastard.
link

SamHornabrook

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 22:00
I do shoot at around standard for aps-c so around 35 - 50mm so thats why I though of the 35,50 and 40mm and I'd love a fast apeture like 1.8 or 1.4 but the tamron gives me the option to shoot all of them and even wider if I need it at a reletively fast apeuture. Which one do you think I should go for ?

JAK

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 22:47
The Tamron shouts out DSLR, so it's hardly incognito. The 21 + 35's are tiny so don't look so officious to others. But they're my thoughts (and vrapan's.) However, only you can decide which you prefer!

I think you've really already decided, and its not the 21+35 is it?

John
John K

mecrox

Link Posted 10/04/2012 - 22:59
So far, I have had most success with the DA 21mm when used close and discreetly, usually waist high, and with the DFA 100mm, a macro lens I know, but the length means I can stand back and frame a shot from far enough away not be overbearing or even noticed if I get it right. I've had some nice shots with the DA 40mm and an old A series 50mm but as another poster says, framing and focus are usually a problem at this focal length when snap-shooting. FWIW, with the DA 21mm I usually pre-set focus to 5ft or so, so no worries about getting a lock, and turn off shake reduction. I've tried using a zoom but usually it is too unwieldy and obvious.

DaveHolmes

Link Posted 11/04/2012 - 02:37
SamHornabrook wrote:
which is better for street photography, the pentax 50mm f1.4 the tamron 17-50mm f2.8, the pentax 35mm f2.4, the pentax 40mm f2.8 ?

I have 2 of your listed 4 lenses and have to agree with JAK above... The Tamron 17-50mm screams 'camera!!'!! It is in no way descrete...

I find the FA50 a little tight for street shooting myself... The FA28 is better for me...

My prefered street set-up is actually a film rig... Pentax-MG or MEsuper with either the M40-2.8 or (and this is my choice for getting in close) the Vivitar 19mm 3.8...

So... Of your list... The 35mm 2.4 would be my choice but I'd (if money is an option...) consider the 21mm or 15mm Ltd's...

Consider getting hold of an old ME with a 28mm attached though... I think you'd have some fun with it...
........................................................................
Digital:
Pentax K5- Vivitar 19mm 3.8; FA35mm f2; D-Xenon 100mm macro f2.8; DA50-200mm WR...
Flash:
Yongnuo YN-560; Vivitar 285HV; Cactus V4 triggers...
Film:
Pentax-MX & M50mm f1.4; Spottie & 55mm f1.8; MG & M40mm 2.8...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/daveholmesphotos/
Last Edited by DaveHolmes on 11/04/2012 - 02:38

Frogfish

Link Posted 11/04/2012 - 05:35
For street I use a combination of 30, 43 & 77 or 85. 15 is always with me but obviously not for people. 30 is my favourite street lens.

The 17-50 is about the perfect range for street and I disagree that it's a massive lens, I have it and it isn't (and it's very sharp too), but it is more obvious than a small prime, though if you are pointing a DSLR at someone it's not a big difference (I sometimes use a Sigma 50-150 too when I need more distance) unless you have a large zoom such as that Sigma or a 70-200 on there !

However I'll add a caveat here that I do all my street shooting in Asia and maybe people are more camera tolerant here ... they certainly love cameras !
http://frogfish.smugmug.com/ Pentax. Pentax DA*300/4, Cosina 55/1.2, Lens Baby Composer Pro & Edge 80, AFA x1.7, Metz 50 af1.
Nikon. D800. D600. Sigma 500/4.5, Nikon 300/2.8 VRII, Sigma 120-300/2.8, Zeiss Distagon ZF2 21/2.8, Zeiss Distagon ZF2 35/2.0, Sigma 50/1.4, Nikkor 85/1.8, Nikon TC20EIII, Nikon TC14EII, Kenko x1.4, Sigma 2.0
Last Edited by Frogfish on 11/04/2012 - 05:37

DaveHolmes

Link Posted 11/04/2012 - 07:04
Frogfish wrote:


The 17-50 is about the perfect range for street and I disagree that it's a massive lens

While I agree with the first part of your statement I think the second borders on lunacy!
In comparison to the primes the OP listed with their 49mm filter threads the Tamron 17-50 is a HUGE piece of glass!!!

It has a 67mm filter thread, and is easily twice the size of an FA50 at its widest; when zooming out to 50mm it's about three times the size!!

"More obvious than a small prime" is an understatement IMO
........................................................................
Digital:
Pentax K5- Vivitar 19mm 3.8; FA35mm f2; D-Xenon 100mm macro f2.8; DA50-200mm WR...
Flash:
Yongnuo YN-560; Vivitar 285HV; Cactus V4 triggers...
Film:
Pentax-MX & M50mm f1.4; Spottie & 55mm f1.8; MG & M40mm 2.8...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/daveholmesphotos/

fritzthedog

Link Posted 11/04/2012 - 10:12
I can not help thinking that many of the comments about the size of the lens are somewhat redundant given that it will potentially be attached to a DSLR body which is hardly discreet!

If being noticed is a concern, there is of course another approach that can be taken and that is to stay out of sight by being far enough away to be unobtrusive. I have had some good results doing this with my Sigma 120-400

Carl
No matter how many lenses I have owned - I have always needed just one more

JAK

Link Posted 11/04/2012 - 12:05
A K-5 is pretty discreet size wise compared to most Canikon DSLRs. It is more on a par with quality 'compacts' that have an APS-C sensor and 35mm film cameras. But a spy camera it isn't! Put almost any zoom on it though and it does stick out (sort of literally) like a sore thumb while the 21 & 35's are like body caps by comparison!

John
John K
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