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Do I need a tele lens?

AlwaysOnAuto

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Been thinking about getting one more lens, but having trouble deciding if it should be a looooonnnnnnnnggg telephoto or as an alternative the 90 macro.
So, to help myself answer the question, I took my camera to the pier with the 24-105 on it.
Had a good time shooting the surfers and ships at anchor.
I also came to the conclusion I think I'm happy with the reach of the 105. Too much more and the surfers would be IN MY FACE close. I also think I'd have a lot more fun with the macro shots the 90 might provide.
Some of the shots I took this morning.
DSC01724.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    105mm    f/5.6    1/1600s    ISO 100
DSC01739.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    105mm    f/5.6    1/640s    ISO 100
DSC01752.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    105mm    f/5.6    1/800s    ISO 100
DSC01764.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    102mm    f/5.6    1/1600s    ISO 100
DSC01780.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    105mm    f/5.6    1/2000s    ISO 100
DSC01781.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    24mm    f/5.6    1/800s    ISO 100

DSC01720 (2).JPG
ILCE-9    FE 24-105mm F4 G OSS    105mm    f/5.6    1/1250s    ISO 100

Is the 90 macro all it is said to be?
 
Last edited:

Clix Pix

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My 90mm macro and my 100-400mm telephoto lenses are my two absolutely most favorite lenses and the ones which have spent the most time on my cameras.

The photos taken here with the 24-105 are very nice, and since many of them involve people at the beach it is probably best that you weren't using a long lens to really zoom in on someone, which could be perceived as invading their privacy. That said, though, I've seen some spectacular images of surfers shot with long lenses which really have an impact that a shorter lens just cannot produce. I tend not to shoot many people in my own excursions with my 100-400mm, so for me it's not quite so much of an issue about potentially invading the privacy of a squirrel or a duck or a goose or my lovely GBH Alfred.....they don't seem to mind at all!

The very first lens on my list when I was going to the store to at last purchase my new Sony gear was the 90mm f/2.8 macro lens, and that lens and I have loved each other ever since. I like to shoot a lot of macro, closeups, abstracts, etc., and the 90mm macro lens is my willing partner in this. She all but leaps on to the camera when I open the cabinet doors....

I know that the 90mm lens can also be used as a portrait lens but I have never tried that. This does expand the lens' usefulness, though, for those who do have people around them whose portraits they'd like to try shooting. For me it's all about the macro and closeup abilities......

In your situation I would go with the 90mm macro and explore what you can do with this remarkable lens!
 

MWhite

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I really, really like my Sony FE 90mm f2.8 macro. It is a wonderful tool that has extraordinary bokeh. I also really appreciate the versatility of my FE 24-105mm f4.0. I find that they (and some others) meet 95% of my needs. Yes, I have thought a lot about the other 5% and even went so far as to rent the Sony FE 100-400 GM. (I'm deeply envious of what some bird photographers on this forum can achieve, e.g., Ziggy99.) There is definitely a learning curve with the latter lens and I may not have done it justice - probably not. But, to my way of thinking, it is unacceptably heavy even if I did master it. (I should probably lift more weights...) I may end up with an APS-C camera and a long lens that will have a much longer apparent length than would be true if I stick with FF. Or, upgrade my A7III to an A7RIV and crop like mad. Just my two cents...
 

Thad E Ginathom

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I love my FE85/1.8 on a6500. If I had had twice as much money when I bought the Tamron 70-180, I would probably have bought the 135/1.8. Zoom or no zoom, I will... one day.

There's a vintage Tamron SP 90 1:2 macro, fully manual, at the back of my cabinet. It gets an outing occasionally, but I'm lazy about proper macro. Like music: I tend to stick to just appreciating other people's!
 

AlwaysOnAuto

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Makeshift photo studio...desk (tripod), paperclip clamp and subject needle, LED flashlight for lighting.
DSC05252.JPG
ILCE-7M3    FE 90mm F2.8 Macro G OSS    90mm    f/2.8    1.6s    ISO 100


And a crop.
DSC05252 (2).JPG
ILCE-7M3    FE 90mm F2.8 Macro G OSS    90mm    f/2.8    1.6s    ISO 100
 

Brownie

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Some of it is processing. Here's your shot with a touch of exposure comp, local contrast, and some sharpening. If I had the RAW image I could do more, like brighten the people up a bit and calming down the surf, which is slightly overexposed. Bear in mind I shoot with a 20MP M-4/3 camera and it's tack-sharp. More resolution doesn't make a photo sharper, some of the old 12MP sensors are amazing.

DSC01879_01.jpg
ILCE-9    FE 90mm F2.8 Macro G OSS    90mm    f/5.0    1/1600s    ISO 100
 

MWhite

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I agree. Also, it isn't that clear a scene. You can see the haze as you look down the beach. It looks like a difficult place to get the exposure correct, especially given the time of day. (Short shadows suggest it is near noon or early afternoon.) The surf is bright, but the people appear to be underexposed (at least on my monitor).
 

Brownie

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I agree. Also, it isn't that clear a scene. You can see the haze as you look down the beach. It looks like a difficult place to get the exposure correct, especially given the time of day. (Short shadows suggest it is near noon or early afternoon.) The surf is bright, but the people appear to be underexposed (at least on my monitor).
Moreover, the sun is in front of and slightly right of the camera, so shooting into the sun. A tough scene to shoot.
 

AlwaysOnAuto

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OK, there basically was no processing as that is the SOOC jpg.
Maybe I need to start using my other software to look at and modify my pictures.
Here's a look up the beach in the other direction. It was pretty smokey out there today too as we have fire going on out east of LA and the winds are not helping clear out the smoke.
DSC01844.JPG
ILCE-9    FE 90mm F2.8 Macro G OSS    90mm    f/5.0    1/1600s    ISO 100
 

Brownie

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OK, there basically was no processing as that is the SOOC jpg.
Maybe I need to start using my other software to look at and modify my pictures.
Here's a look up the beach in the other direction. It was pretty smokey out there today too as we have fire going on out east of LA and the winds are not helping clear out the smoke.
View attachment 116913
Better light for sure, and the smoke sure isn't helping anything. Ultimately though if you want the clear-sharp look then processing from RAW is the most direct route. A jpeg is the just the camera doing it's best to interpret the shot, and then processing in-camera. The camera is always going to take the middle of the road approach. You can help it along some by choosing specific settings, like sharpening, dynamic, etc. that will get you closer to what you want without processing. I'm not sure what all Sony offers so that's best left to someone else.
 

Clix Pix

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On a clear day, if you aim the camera correctly you can see the Newport Beach pier.
View attachment 116910
Am I being too critical or do I need to think about a higher megapixel camera. When I look at this full size on my computer screen it just doesn't have the sharpness I'm seeing in some of the shots posted here, albeit with much longer lenses being used.

I think I would have stopped down a bit more, used maybe f/9 or f/11.....and I definitely would have shot in RAW, not .jpeg! One has much, much more control over things when shooting in RAW. I often shoot in either Aperture Priority or in all-manual, which offers me the options to control my settings before I even click the shutter button so that the image stands a better chance of coming out the way I want. A lot of the time I use Auto ISO, especially when I know I'll be going into situations with frequently changing light. Keeping the entire "exposure triangle" in mind when adjusting settings helps in getting the kinds of images you envision.

As for a higher megapixel camera -- it's terrific for getting extra detail and resolution, for being able to crop without losing a lot in the process, but it also will not hesitate to show user errors in technique, too. A higher-resolution camera is much less forgiving!
 

Brownie

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OK, there basically was no processing as that is the SOOC jpg.
Maybe I need to start using my other software to look at and modify my pictures.
Here's a look up the beach in the other direction. It was pretty smokey out there today too as we have fire going on out east of LA and the winds are not helping clear out the smoke.
View attachment 116913
Here's something you can try if you're on a Windows platform:

Open the image with MS Photo, click on Edit & Create>Edit>Filters>Enhance Your Photo. It does a pretty credible job with this photo (I tried it!).

Take it a step further and click Adjustments, then give it a little clarity (25 or so on the scale) and a touch of vignette (9), just enough to make the middle of the shot the focal point. Done. It takes about 30 seconds. If you want to enhance but don't actually want to process, maybe give this a shot.
 

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