430ex flash or new lens? what would you do?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Tatony333, Feb 5, 2009.

  1. Tatony333

    Tatony333 TPF Noob!

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    All right guys and gals i'm stuck...I have the canon 450d/xsi the two lenses i own are the kit and 50 1.8..

    I'm totally happy with my results with these two lenses when used outside..now when we step inside i'm having diffuculty with light and not getting any acceptable results(except when i use a tripod then pics look good but still need help). I want to take pictures mainly of people and mostly of my new baby on the way:D.

    my question is..at this time i can afford to purchase the canon 430ex flash...is this the way to go..will this flash if used properly give me great results of indoor photos or will it just improve them?(if anyone has sample photos of people or baby pictures taken with just the flash and no other special lighting other then natural light I'd love to see them)

    Or..

    do I save up some more cash and wait it out and purchase myself a kicka** lens...which one do you recomend for my uses...which way would you go Flash or lens...

    Thanks
     
  2. EOS_JD

    EOS_JD TPF Noob!

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    Use of window light can create amazing images (no flash
    [​IMG]

    Flash though has its uses when the light isn't quite right.
    [​IMG]
     
  3. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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    Since you're struggling with indoor shots, get the 430EX ($190 at Cameta Camera) and then read up on how to use flash effectively (looks like you didn't use flash) over at planet neil: tangents.
     
  4. EOS_JD

    EOS_JD TPF Noob!

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    You should be able to capture great indoor images with the 50f1.8. Remember you need to up the ISO when you are indoors.


    Both lenses are able to take good images however your kit lens is pretty slow (has a small maximum aperture)

    You could look for something like the Tamron 17-50 f2.8 which is much faster and will provide better results. The 50 though is faster still and perhaps a flash will give you the results you need.

    Above are two images. One natural light (no flash) 50mm f1.8 1/250th ISO100

    THe bottom with flash.
    100mm f6.3 1/80th ISO400

    You can use both ways to get great images. Make sure your shutter speed is high enough (up your ISO) and also make sure you focus on the eyes.

    Shooting indoors even with a fast lens is tough. I'd vote the flash but then you have a lot to learn about the use of flash. Bouncing it off a ceiling will help initially.

    It's a hard choice.

    Good luck
    JD
     
  5. inTempus

    inTempus TPF Noob!

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    Babies move around a lot. Indoors even with moderate lighting it can be difficult to get them to sit still long enough to get a decent (non-blurry) shot. With a flash you can get amazing shots at any time of day under any lighting conditions. One of my favorite things to do is to sit around at night and shot pics of my 4mo son. I get the cutest expressions. Here's some examples of pics I get using my 580EXII:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    In my opinion, a flash is a necessity for baby pics indoors.
     
  6. Breanna

    Breanna TPF Noob!

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    Congrats on your little one on the way!

    Definitely make the flash investment. You won't regret it.

    Here are some indoor pics of MY little guy with my 420ex bounced off of the ceiling (a step down from what you're looking at) + natural light

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Here are some with NO natural light, just the flash

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Tatony333

    Tatony333 TPF Noob!

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    Wow thanks guys...I think i will go ahead and purchase the flash and start practising before baby gets here....

    Eos jd, Tharmsen, Breanna thanks for posting the pics they are all awsome...your babies are beautifull and i cant wait to post my pics..

    Tharmsen in your pictures did you bounce the light or use anytype of diffuser or is it direct flash..just curious..?
     
  8. inTempus

    inTempus TPF Noob!

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    I never use direct light, it's too harsh. The flash on the camera can do that for ya. :)

    I bounced the flash over my left shoulder onto a light brown drape hanging over our windows. This gave a nice warming effect. You can also buy flash attachments such as the Fong Whale Tail that has various filters that give a similar effect.
     
  9. Tatony333

    Tatony333 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks..:D
     
  10. HoosierJoe

    HoosierJoe TPF Noob!

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    Get the 430EX. It completely changed my indoor shooting. Is your kit lens the 18-55 IS lens or the non IS? If it is the non IS I would suggest selling it and eventually getting something else. There are a lot of good lenses in the $300-500 range. But a good, cheap lens is the Canon 18-55 IS, I have seen them new for $170 and used for as little as $95.
     
  11. angeleyescc

    angeleyescc TPF Noob!

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    Hi, I have the same lenses as you. I got the 50 for Christmas and with a new little one, have not had too much time to play with it. I really do like it though. I have the 430ex flash, I have enjoyed it immensely. I almost ALWAYS bounce the flash. It is fun to play with it, you get so many different looks with just moving it slightly. I took some nice pictures at Christmas by bouncing the flash off of a gold pillow. It gave a really soothing glow to it. I just ordered a flash diffuser off ebay for under 10 dollars, so we will see how it goes! Good luck and have fun! By the way, if you are having a baby another good thing to buy would be an external hard drive to store your baby pictures on. They are less susceptible to virus (disconnect while not it use) and lots of pics will slow your computer down. Ok Im done!
     
  12. kami

    kami TPF Noob!

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    Get the flash, and if you can invest in a flash stand and a simple shoot thru umbrella you can work wonders especially for indoor baby pics.
     

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