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Old 08-30-2012, 01:24 PM   #101
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Since most of those shots are stopped down, you could achieve basically the same thing with your current lens. No need to lust after f/2.0 if shots you like were taken at f/4.5 or f/7.1.
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Old 08-30-2012, 01:39 PM   #102
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beautiful shots in this thread! I'm lucky to get a non blurry picture with my point and shoot on auto focus.

Last edited by VTSubieRS; 08-30-2012 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 08-30-2012, 01:43 PM   #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xluben View Post
Since most of those shots are stopped down, you could achieve basically the same thing with your current lens. No need to lust after f/2.0 if shots you like were taken at f/4.5 or f/7.1.

Is it the crop body that's effecting my DOF then? That picture seems to have an extremely shallow DOF for f/4.5, or is it just my photography skills? Or lack there of.
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Old 08-30-2012, 02:10 PM   #104
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Is it the crop body that's effecting my DOF then? That picture seems to have an extremely shallow DOF for f/4.5, or is it just my photography skills? Or lack there of.
The full frame body has a lot to do with it, but your choice of location also affects it. To match that look on a crop body you would need an 85mm lens at about f/2.8. If that's the look you want, then a cheap 85mm f/1.8 would be a great place to start. For a cheap/wide aperture telephoto is pretty hard to beat.

Finding a spot with TONS of space in the background is going to help a lot as well.
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Old 08-30-2012, 02:41 PM   #105
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Now how come my 50mm f/1.8 won't give me the same effect?
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Old 08-30-2012, 02:45 PM   #106
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It will. You just gotta work on the subject/background seperation.

Distance between camera and subject, and distance between subject and background. The greater the second is than the first, the more DOF seperation you'll have.
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Old 08-30-2012, 02:49 PM   #107
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Quote:
Originally Posted by INKMAN View Post
Now how come my 50mm f/1.8 won't give me the same effect?
If you are looking for more background blur, the background will have to be sufficiently far from your subject to get the effect (more effect with larger aperture of course).
Are you shooting with it set to f1.8 when you are trying to achieve the effect ? (like put it in aperture priority mode and set it specifically to 1.8)
I have the f1.8 50mm on my (APS-C) Rebel T1i and the short DOF seems to work pretty well, depending how close I am to the subject and how far the background is from the subject.
As a side note, I do usually have to pick what part of the car (if I'm shooting cars) I want to be in focus though, at f1.8 the whole car never seems to be in focus, so I'll pick the front, or the headlights, or wheels or whatever I want to get the most attention
You can see in one of the blue WRX pics above, the rear wheels start to blur a touch; the DOF in that case doesn't completely cover the length of the car.

(Edit: vision.dynamix stated my point concisely by the time I typed up my response)

Last edited by lastsnare; 08-30-2012 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 08-30-2012, 02:50 PM   #108
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This is the best example that I have but the background isn't much to look at obviously. The trees were about a 100 yards away
This was shot with my 55-250 though.

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Old 08-30-2012, 03:04 PM   #109
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Camera: Canon 60D
Lens: Canon 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
ISO: ISO200
Shutter Speed: forgot
Focal Length: forgot
Aperture: forgot
Processing: Photoshop CS5



Camera: Canon 60D
Lens: Canon 50mm f/1.8
ISO: ISO200
Shutter Speed: forgot
Focal Length: forgot
Aperture: forgot
Processing: Photoshop CS5

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Old 08-30-2012, 03:11 PM   #110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by INKMAN View Post
This is the best example that I have but the background isn't much to look at obviously. The trees were about a 100 yards away
This was shot with my 55-250 though.

That's a great shot.

I think, if you were trying to get more background blur, you could position yourself closer to the car (this may affect barrel distortion and pincushion effects).
I could be wrong, but, in my experience, it seems as though the depth-of-field -at a given aperture- gets longer when you are farther away from your subject, I'm not sure if this is a true effect or if it's because many lenses have a smaller maximum aperture as they zoom in (unless you have something like the straight-through 70-200 f/4, I have one but almost never use it in favor of a 100-400mm, so haven't tested this theory).

If more blur is your goal, try standing/sitting closer to the car with the background at the same distance and see if it makes a difference perhaps.

Nice shots as well liltoua, I especially like the side view of the nose on the red car (S2000?)
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:13 PM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lastsnare View Post
I could be wrong, but, in my experience, it seems as though the depth-of-field gets longer when you are farther away from your subject, I'm not sure if this is a true effect or if it's because many lenses have a smaller maximum aperture as they zoom in
This is correct.

http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:16 PM   #112
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Very interesting, that's good to know, thanks for confirming my suspicions
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:19 PM   #113
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For instance, I plugged in:

5D, 50mm, f/1.2.

At 3', the total DOF is 0.07'
At 10', the total DOF is 0.86'
At 25', the total DOF is 5.47'
At 50', the total DOF is 22.7'
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Old 08-30-2012, 03:27 PM   #114
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Quote:
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I love the look of the second to last motorcyle shot. How do you like the Sigma lens compared to the Canon version?

And yes, the 135 f/2L looks like a fun lens to play around with.
The Sigma 70-200 vs Canon 70-200? Hands down, the Canon versions are all better than the Sigma. Better build (slightly, but noticeable), smoother focus ring, smoother tripod mount ring (you would think this isn't that big of a deal, but when shooting with a tripod, minute movements can make or break a shot), and obviously Canon has had IS offered on their lenses for much longer than Sigma has their OS.

But, the Sigma was significantly cheaper than the Canon and at web size, you couldn't really tell the difference between a shot between the Sigma and Canon.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:32 PM   #115
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I should just save and go straight for the Canon then and not waste my money upgrading down the road.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:38 PM   #116
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I should just save and go straight for the Canon then and not waste my money upgrading down the road.
The Canon 70-200 f/4L (Non-IS) is a spectacular lens. Ive bought multiple copies used and all have been great. For $500 (used), its hard to beat.

Ive owned it while owning the 2.8IS and 2.8ISII and will still find myself using the f/4
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:44 PM   #117
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Well that's good to know but I've heard a lot of people say to just save up for the IS version which is twice the price! My budget my not allow that at this time so I don't know which way to go.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:48 PM   #118
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Its not very hard to buy a used Canon lens, use it, then sell it for the same price as you bought it for. I'd say buy the f/4L, try it. If you feel you need IS, or f/2.8, then consider upgrading.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:49 PM   #119
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Its not very hard to buy a used Canon lens, use it, then sell it for the same price as you bought it for. I'd say buy the f/4L, try it. If you feel you need IS, or f/2.8, then consider upgrading.
I typically rent lenses first before buying as well. We have a company locally that is super cheap and it saves me from having to go through the hassle of buying and selling.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:52 PM   #120
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Discovering lens rentals is a dangerous thing. I spent approx $5k in rentals last year.
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Old 08-30-2012, 04:54 PM   #121
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liltoua- nice shot on that black gc subaru.


any more pictures from that shoot! I love myself a nice clean gc8 subaru!
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Old 08-30-2012, 05:22 PM   #122
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^^^^ Agreed! This looks like a bad ass machine!


There are so many opinions out there so I'm going to probably just rent one and see if I like it. I haven't heard too many bad things about either the IS or non IS. I just don't know if it's worth twice the money!! Maybe it will make me a better shooter if I don't have IS to rely on. I shoot my kids with my 50mm non IS and if I can keep up with them I think I might be OK!
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Old 08-30-2012, 05:24 PM   #123
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This is part of my problem as well. When I'm in almost full zoom I'm at f/5.6! No good!
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Old 08-30-2012, 05:55 PM   #124
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vision.dynamix View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by vision.dynamix View Post
For instance, I plugged in:

5D, 50mm, f/1.2.

At 3', the total DOF is 0.07'
At 10', the total DOF is 0.86'
At 25', the total DOF is 5.47'
At 50', the total DOF is 22.7'
This is the calculator I used to determine that 135mm f/4.5 on full frame is about the same as 85mm f/2.8 on a crop body. It is a very useful tool, but simply looking at DOF can be a bit misleading for the topic at hand, which is background blur. Many people think DOF and background blur are one in the same. They are not. They are related, but not the same thing.

Depending on focal length (which control camera to subject distance) and subject to background distance (controlled by how you set up the shot), the background blur can greatly change, even with the same DOF. Here is an example in which the focal length and camera to subject distance are changed (in order to keep the subject the same size in the frame, and to keep the DOF exactly the same). You can clearly see that the compressed perspective of the longer lens makes for more background blur.



Here is the article that goes with the photo (NOT written by me):

http://www.bobatkins.com/photography...ound_blur.html

And here's a good synopsis:

Quote:
If the background is far enough away (well outside the depth of field) and the subject if fairly close (well inside the hyperfocal distance) the degree of blurring is related to the absolute physical size of the lens aperture. For a 56mm f5.6 lens that would be 10mm and for an 85mm f5.6 lens it would be 85/5.6 = 15mm. So you'd expect the far distant background blur of the 85/5.6 to be about 50% more than that of the 56/5.6, and, in fact, it is!

Based on this you can see why a 600/4 lens wide open (physical aperture = 150mm) will blur the far distant background far more than a wide open 50/1.4 lens (physical aperture = 35.7mm). In fact it will blur it 4.2x more. However if shooting the same subject at the same magnification (let's say 0.01x, which would by typical for a full body shot of a person), the depth of field of the 50/1.4 will be about 1/3 of that of the 600/4 and so will blur close in objects more.

There's no really simple "rule of thumb" that will tell you whether relative aperture (f-stop) or absolute aperture (size of the aperture in mm) will be most important in determining the degree of blurring at a given distance behind (or in front of) a particular focus point. Hence the need for this calculator!
I wouldn't get too tied up in the calculator at the bottom of the page, but it can be fun to play with. I've found that once you become more familiar with setting up the shots, you should be able to estimate what is best for each situation just by looking at it.

Here's another good example (from another one of his articles) on how the same f-stop will give you more background blur with a longer lens (if you back up so that the subject framing is the same):



For car shoots you're going to want to have a large subject to background distance and a large physical aperture. Usually this means you're going to want a fast telephoto over something like a Nifty Fifty. Even a 50mm f/1.2 probably isn't going to have the look you want. It will have a razor thin DOF, but not that much background blur. This is really the opposite of what you want. You'd rather have the whole car in focus, but the background completely blurred. This is exactly the job for a telephoto.

For some good advice on getting a lens with a lot of blur, here is another article:

http://www.bobatkins.com/photography...ound_blur.html

The first section just proves the point that a fast prime will have way more blur than an f/2.8 zoom, but we all knew that already. The bottom section goes back to the point about choosing the lens with the largest physical aperture (focal length / f-stop), in order to have the most background blur.

To try and put it in perspective, I came up with a table of some common lenses to consider. I calculated the physical size of the aperture as well as the DOF at a given distance. I came up with the distance based on how far you would have to stand in order to get a 20 foot wide field of view. I figured this would be useful for a car photo. I used the "Dimensional Field of View Calculator" section of this site to calculate the distance to subject:

http://www.tawbaware.com/maxlyons/calc.htm

And then I went back to this calculator to get the DOF:

http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

What I didn't calculate is the background blur. Why? Because that depends on how far away the background is! The DOF in the table being small has nothing to do with the background blur, it is the physical size of the aperture that matters. Adding the DOF into the table just proves the point that shorter, fast lenses have a shallow DOF and small physical aperture (usually not what you would want for blurred backgrounds in car photos), while a longer lens has much more useful DOF and a larger physical aperture, therefore more background blur with the correct setup.

Here's the table I came up with:



Looking at a specific example for INKMAN...



The top and bottom are ones you currently have. The others are "affordable" options you may be considering. Between the ones you have, you can see that the 250mm end of the zoom is much better than the nifty fifty. The only problem is that you need over 200ft of working distance (and you'd want that much behind the car too)!

The 70-200 f/4 really isn't going to gain you any background blur at all (very little), but it will make it so you can stand 50ft closer. It may be the best lens for you all around (including motorsports, walkaround, people, etc), but in terms of background blur for set up car shots, I think the 85mm f/1.8 may be your best option. Anything longer on a crop body starts to require huge amounts of space to use properly.
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Old 08-30-2012, 05:56 PM   #125
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This is part of my problem as well. When I'm in almost full zoom I'm at f/5.6! No good!
Isnt much of an issue.

7D, 250mm, f/5.6, critical focus @50' still gives you a DOF of 2.5'.
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