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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 12:03 am 
Hi all,

After 3 days of trawling around the internet looking for the best buys for my needs, I am still totally unsure of what I should be going for.

So far, I am almost decided on a Canon 550D but only because I haven't really researched the rest.

Hopefully you can help me with a shopping list for body and lens for a first time DSLR owner?

Shooting needs

The camera will be used primarily and most importantly for hair/beauty style shots. My partner is a successful hairstylist and we need to capture our own work, as well as that shown at catwalk shows and competitions. I need a result that shows the high detail and intricacy of every single hair within a style. Our own shots will be mostly head / full face shots rather than full body shots. The results might be submitted for publishing to hair magazines, and will almost certainly be used in house for the salon PR materials. I know this might sound stupid, but I need a lens that is able to capture every stray hair! I'm definitely not looking for a "Vaselined lens" portrait result. ;)

When not using the camera at catwalk shows or for portrait work, it will be used for capturing salon interiors, photos of family (and their pets) and general use.

Where I'm at right now

Swaying towards the Canon 550D with a 18-135mm lens. From my very limited understanding (following the tutorials from this site) I could reduce the F-Stop and zoom in to get great detail on hair/beauty shots without distortion (something about being 15ft away???). But I'm worried I might have this wrong and I might lose the crystal clear clarity that I am looking for with the individual strands of hair within the hairstyle. :?

Any advice?

Below are some photos we took at the most recent catwalk event to give you some idea of the events we are trying to capture (and the lack of detail we are currently getting from our Canon Powershot A470 Point and Click)

many thanks!

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 2:03 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 7:58 pm
Posts: 817
Location: United Kingdom
"How much can you afford to spend?" is one question we have to ask.

For example, the Canon 24-70mm 2/2.8 L or 24-105mm f/4 L lens can give sharp and crystal clear images but may be out of your budget.

I don't think you can go wrong with any DSLR body provided that you like its ergonomics.

_________________
DSLRs: Canon EOS 70D, 30D
Lenses: Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, EF 50mm f/1.8 II, EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM

CSCs: Panasonic DMC-GF3
Lenses: Panasonic Lumix G 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 2:33 am 
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Location: bit east of Melbourne
or the first lens that comes to mind, is the Canon 17-55 IS USM.

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Canon Powershot S95, Canon 6D,7D, Canon 40 2.8 STM, Tamron 24-70 2.8 VC, Canon 17-40 L, Canon 15-85, Canon 85 1.8, Sigma 30 1.4, 50mm 1.8, Canon 100 2.8L Macro, Canon 70-300L +Kenko 1.4 Pro 300DGX, Canon 430EX II and RS 4 Classic


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 2:40 am 
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Location: Speyer (Germany)
You can't go wrong with the camera - but personally looking at the little bit of money you'd have to pay more, I'd go for the 600D.

The 18-135mm... well... it's not a bad lens for everyday use but in terms of sharpness there are better ones.
For example for those shots I was using a 100mm 2.8 Macro lens (on a Canon EOS 500D), which is pretty sharp. Not even stopped down but at F2.8 (I guess in terms of sharpness F4 would be better indeed) - and 100mm should be OK for any "head shots".
Image

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And a 100% crop:
Image


But I used an external flash gun in order to keep the ISO down at 200, otherwise I'd have had to shoot at ISO 1600 with quite some loss of detail. ISO 400 and F4 could have made the shots sharper, maybe some missing details in the dark parts.

_________________
Canon EOS 500D + Canon EOS 5D Mark III + Canon EOS 33v
Canon EF 28-80mm 3.5-5.6 USM + EF 24-105mm 4L IS USM + EF 100-400mm 4.5-5.6L IS USM + EF 50mm 1.8 II + EF 100mm 2.8L Macro IS USM + Sigma 12-24mm 4.5-5.6 EX DG HSM + Canon Speedlite 580 EX II + Nissin Speedlite Di 466


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:23 am 
Thanks for the replies already guys.

I'm not sure how to quote on here (can't even see the button under each post) but someone asked
Quote:
"How much can you afford to spend?" is one question we have to ask.


So I looked up the cost of the first 2 suggested lenses and the answer is "Nowhere near that much!" :oops: Thousands of pounds on a lens seems a bit much for me at this stage, especially as it's the beginning of a new hobby rather than a profession.

I definitely feel it will be worthwhile investing in the nifty fifty as the shots achieved with it in the lens part of this forum are very much to my taste.

I have also found this though, which seems to have some excellent reviews: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tamron-AF28-75- ... 208&sr=8-1

What do you think?


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