I'm new to digital photography (discounting point and shoot days) and brand new to these forums. I love the internet for its wealth of information, but sometimes its just nice to get some perspective from multiple sources, hence my joining these forums. I've been self educating myself the fundamentals and find myself quickly grasping key things like the trifecta of ISO/Aperture/Shutter speed amongst other important aspects on getting away from that "Auto" mode.
Anywho, around Mid November I dove right in with my first new DSLR purchase. Not only DSLR, but also my first introduction to the Nikon family. At the end of the day I ended up with the new D3200 model, I was really torn on waiting for the D5200. I can definitely see how the extra focal points would be a nice improvement over my current D3200 as well as the tilt view for self shots/ down low or overhead shots / etc but given the likely difference in price I can't complain, I'm quickly fallin' for this little workhorse. When I purchased it they had a promotion running on a rebate for a telephoto lens option which I went ahead and grabbed at that time. Given the heavy discount that applied to several options, I passed on the 55-200 and opted for the 55-300mm (AF-S f/4.5-5.6 G ED). Since then, I've added to my gear with the purchase of a Tamron Velocity 8x sling bag and a Horrus Bennu 747X Tripod. That tripod is great by the way, especially for the pricepoint.
Generally I like taking photos of nature and architecture. I've always liked anything from a vast skyline shots to the finest details of elements. Having a decent telephoto lens (for my purposes) covering quite some range I found myself wanting to experience the other end of the spectrum with macro. I asked "Santa" for some extension tubes to drop on my body with the 18-55kit lens and see where it takes me but as luck would have it I came into a nice stash of money in addition to cash presents. So now I can consider a dedicated macro lens.
At first, I had found myself torn with which to go with, buy the extensions and see how much I like macro or put that money towards a true 1:1 macro lens. Bu as with any of my hobbies I tend to feel more comfortable putting a little bit more dough in on the front end to get what I pay for so to speak and not feel like I wasted money later on if and when I want to upgrade.
From what I can tell from all the sources I've come across along with the puddings of proof it seems like the extensions would not be a waste. And as of recently, I discovered the effects of blending the two together for even more pseudo ultra macro if you will. But for now I can only afford one of the two and opted for the Lens while I have the money on had. I can add the less expensive tubes later if I even find the need/want for them at that point.
So with my seemingly vast recent acquired knowledge
I've decided to order my first full frame prime lens (just in case one day I go to a new body with a full sensor), the Sigma 105mm F/2.8 EX DG OS HSM. I'm so excited to put it to use I can't wait. I've heard so much about this focal range for macro work especially for say not scaring off a butterfly or something similar. Given I'm on a cropped DX sensor the effective focal I've heard will be ~168mm on mine which I presume won't bother me. What I didn't want to happen is to get a 60mm with a artificially longer focal length and then all of a sudden through it on a new full frame sensor body down the road and it be so short that I scare off my subjects, making it difficult to use the lens for its intended purpose. I've also heard it makes for a good double for portrait use which isn't a priority of mine but will be a nice added side bonus if that's truly the case. I looked at others also and my other top contenders were the Tamron 90mm macro (both current and soon to be released version) as well as the nikon 105mm macro which really appealed to me but was just to much budget for me to stretch.
I found in general most macro lens all got decent marks on reputable review sites like fredmiranda.com or even random youtube reviews etc so that made it even that much harder to decided. So any advice on narrowing the field moving forward is certainly welcomed (Now that I've found this site I'll make use of these forums and reviews as well
) On that note I am intentionally ruling out cropped frame lenses moving forward just because If I stay on my current path of new found enthusiasm I will one day likely find myself going for that full frame body I mentioned and would like to make use of my current glass as much as possible.
I've heard mixed reviews on a prime 50mm f/1.4, but I think that maybe my next lens I wouldn't mine testing if I found someone local that I could test. I know there are rental options but I'm not that eager to try it and would rather put that into the lens cost especially given it's pricepoint. Anyway I suspect my little camera bag will be just about geared up for my needs anyway and that would just be me getting more than carried away, really I would just like to see what that high fstop looks like
Oh well I suppose after my long winded houpla went well beyond just my "introduction" but I just couldn't resist sharing some of my new found excitement that I hope turns into a passion. So with that I hope my post was atleast somewhat entertaining!
Oh' I almost forgot, I am also trying to tackle shooting in RAW and post processing in Lightroom which is cool as hell on just how much you can massage a photo after the face and make up for ummm my oopsies I'll say
Catch you around!