70-200mm f/4 for action shots in a theatre?


TPF Noob!
Oct 13, 2011
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I've been wanting to buy a white lens, and this may be the perfect excuse...

My wife (an acting student) needs high-quality photos of herself acting on stage in a darkened theater. Full-body and waist-up shots primarily. Don't think she needs headshots. I would be shooting on a tripod during rehearsal. And I may be in the balcony. From the balcony, a human figure would be about the size of a nickel when held at arm's length.

I have no experience shooting in a huge theatre. Would a 70-200mm f/4 (sub-$700 lens) do the trick? Or should I rent a 70-200mm f/2.8IS? Keep in mind, I only have experience renting the f/4. I've never held the 2.8IS before.

Thanks for your help!
With the F/4 you'll have to push the ISO to possibly noisy levels. The 2.8 with IS will definitely be a benefit. Don't expect upper body, or even full body, shots to fill the frame at 200mm from the balcony, but with this lens you should be able to crop and still get good quality.
The 2.8 will be better for the low light. Its big but if your using a tripod it should be manageable. I recommend if you rent this lens that you consider renting a 1.4x teleconverter also. If you find your distance to far it would give you that extra bit of reach, of course you will lose a stop of light but it may get you out of a spot

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