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Lens recommendations?

Discussion in 'Sony Alpha E-Mount Lenses' started by GDSale, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. GDSale

    GDSale New to TalkEmount

    4
    Jan 6, 2015
    England
    Hi, I'm new here.

    I bought an A6000 last month as an upgrade from my Canon G12. I'm still finding my way round the camera and I'm not an experienced photographer in general, often using auto modes over manually setting the aperture or shutter speed. That's mainly because I'm usually happy with the results the auto settings produce.

    I have the kit lens and I've been using it since I got the camera (all the photos on my Flickr were taken with it, and you can get an idea of what I take photos of) but I'd like to get more out of my camera and would like some lens recommendations.

    A friend of mine has recommended getting a prime lens rather than a zoom lens as he thinks this will teach me some good photography lessons and force me to learn more. Is he right? If so, is there a reasonably priced prime lens I should think about buying?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. pbizarro

    pbizarro TalkEmount Veteran

    349
    Nov 24, 2014
    Portugal
    I recommend you use what you currently have for a lot more time, before buying any more lenses. If possible, learn more about photography.
     
  3. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Welcome and congrats on the purchase!

    Some nice photos on your Flickr album ;)

    A very reasonably priced prime APC-S native lens is the SEL 50 1.8 and the little more expensive SEL 35 1.8. You can find dedicated threads here about these lenses (browse the "Sony E-mount Lenses" subforum under "Equipment")

    There are also some very nice adapted prime lenses you could use (and that can be had for very little money - cheaper than the native lenses above and optically equal at least) but from your sayings I get you are not ready to try manual focus lenses
     
  4. GDSale

    GDSale New to TalkEmount

    4
    Jan 6, 2015
    England
    Thanks for the replies.

    pbizarro, I do need to learn more about photography, agree with you there.

    NickCyprus - helpful info and exactly what I was after. I'd been looking at the SEL50F18 and may think about buying that at some point this year.
     
  5. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    Welcome :)

    You may not be experienced (yet), but from looking at your Flickr you certainly have an eye, some nice shots and impressive from the kit lens/auto settings. I certainly look froward to seeing what you can do once you really unleash the power of the A6000!

    As for next lens, I pretty much echo what Nick says. And I would push you more in the direction of the manual option for these reasons;
    1. It's MUCH cheaper to experiment with a few different prime focal lengths and see what suits your style
    2. It forces you to use manual focus/aperture (and likely shutter) so you will learn more and faster

    I would suggest you go the old Minolta route mainly as there are so many options, easily found, and they adapt nicely to E-Mount (some of the other legacy glass can have some quirks with the adaptors) - I personally have an Olympus OM 50mm on the basis it was given to me for free, but I had to modify the adaptor to get it to fully stop down, Canon FD lenses also have interesting adaptors to get them working properly with the aperture control...

    Once you've found your way then should you want to you can invest in the SEL50 or SEL35, which give you back auto aperture and also allow you to take advantage of the blistering autofocus of the A6000. The last month I have pretty much lived with the SEL35 on my A6000, it's ideal for indoor festive captures of people/animals etc, the SEL50 would be to tight for this IMO (so you see how your style/preferred subjects may have you chose one of the other initially).

    Hope this is all helpful, it is of course only my personal view, you can't really go too wrong with the A6000, it's a fantastic body to build a set of lenses around, whichever direction you take. You've made a good choice :)
     
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  6. GDSale

    GDSale New to TalkEmount

    4
    Jan 6, 2015
    England
    Thanks for the encouraging words José, appreciate that.

    I'll check out the Minolta range and adaptors, I'm curious to see how much cheaper they are versus the SEL50 (currently a little under £200).

    With adaptors is it as simple as just attaching it and the lens? Are any features lost by using an adaptor?
     
  7. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    Adaptor = £10
    Lens = Anywhere from £20 to £150 depending on the deal you find. Check out your local camera shop. Any SR/MD/MC mount lens can use the same SR/MD/MC adaptor (Minolta updated the mount from SR to MC to MD over time but the difference is not applicable when adapting to E-Mount so they are interchangeable). More background on the mounting system here... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minolta_SR-mount

    Any legacy adapted lens will be manual focus and manual aperture, but the lenses in question were always designed to work this way so you are not losing anything in that respect. The camera is of course capable of auto focus/aperture with a native lens but many people find manual is often quicker as you know what you want, the camera has to guess to a certain degree. But yes, it is as simple as attaching it to the back of the lens, and then the adaptor to the camera.

    The exception to the above rule is Sony/Minolta A-Mount lenses can be adapted with full auto everything maintained, however, it is not a cheap endeavour as the adaptor is £200. So this only really makes sense for people that have an existing collection of A-Mount lenses and want to use them on their E-Mount camera.

    Take a look at Nicks signature for a list of various lenses you could get.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  8. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    As an example...

    50mm lens for £40 http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Minolta-MD-Rokkor-50-mm-f-1-7-Lens-Manual-Focus-Lens-/121519319485
    35mm for £75 http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Minolta-MC-35mm-1-2-8-W-ROKKOR-an-Sony-A7-getestet-/141449209607
    Adaptor to worth with both the above for £9 http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Adapter-R...EX-5-5N-5R-NEX-3-6-7-Body-DC104-/130921898657

    I'm not saying these lenses are necessarily the best options, just an example of what you can get for a lot less cash.
    Plus if you decide you don't like this route, sell it again on Ebay for the same money you paid... It was all used in the first place so one extra owner is not going to devalue it.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    For the examples listed above by José, you could easily find those even cheaper - those prices are rather highly priced ;)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. GDSale

    GDSale New to TalkEmount

    4
    Jan 6, 2015
    England
    Thanks guys - very helpful! :)

    If I get any I'll let you know. I'm planning on selling my G12 and hope to get around £100 for it, so this could be a good way to try out these lenses.
     
  11. José De Bardi

    José De Bardi Assistant in Virtue

    Aug 31, 2013
    Dorset, UK
    José
    No problem! Have fun, and be sure to share your pics :)
     
  12. Zanner

    Zanner TalkEmount Veteran

    395
    Aug 19, 2013
    Wisconsin, USA
    Suzanne
    Welcome! I was exactly like you about two years ago. Bought a Nex6. My first real camera :) This group has been nothing but helpful in learning more about photography. And my photog friend told me "put your camera on manual mode and just go with it". So I did. It forces you to learn and I don't think I've taken it off M mode yet (except when letting my husband use it ;) ) I ended up finding an old 50mm 1.7 Pentax lens in my father in laws closet, bought an adapter, and the rest is history. I blame this site for my addiction to old lenses now. But it has been such a fun learning experience. Enjoy!

    And I agree - You definitely have the eye! Great Flickr site!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  13. ztryfe

    ztryfe TalkEmount Veteran

    224
    Aug 19, 2014
    Mexico
    Vic
    Warning, once you get your hands on an adapted nifty fifty ( 50mm lens), you can get a condition called GAS, its pretty fun! but can get expensive ;)

    I got mine ( the Rokkor-X 50mm f1.7) and an adapter for 40 USD in total, and as others say, its really great for getting a good grasp on photography foundations.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  14. chrid

    chrid Super Noob

    807
    May 5, 2014
    australia
    Chris
    All great advice so far, if you decide to get 1 autofocus lens I would get the 35 much more versatile. If on a budget you cant beat the sigma 30.
     
  15. Amamba

    Amamba TalkEmount All-Pro

    Apr 13, 2013
    SE MI
    I would wait until you know exactly what is limiting you with the setup you have. It's easy to end up with over a dozen E-mount and MF lenses and still be looking for the perfect setup. Helps when you know what it is you are missing.

    MF lenses can be a cheap and fun way to get started. Around here, with some patience, some mounts like Minolta MD can be found very cheaply. But if you shoot a lot of moving or low light subjects, MF can get frustrating. I ended up selling most of my MD glass. I kept MD35-70/3.5 Macro (an excellent lens, highly recommended) and a couple of primes which I rarely use.

    I do agree that complementing your kit lens with a faster, higher IQ prime makes sense. If you shoot a lot of low light or portraits and can live with FL, Sony 50/1.8 seems like a no brainer, sharp, great bokeh, stabilized, reasonable used prices ($200 or less around here).

    If you need something wider, Sigma 30/2.8 is super sharp, small, light and cheap ($140 or do used). But to be honest in good light I don't see a great deal of difference between it and my 18-55 kit, not without pixel peeping. It is however the sharpest APS-C E-mount lens, per DXOmark.

    Sigma 19/2.8 is close in performance but wider. About same price.
     
  16. alainib

    alainib TalkEmount Rookie

    20
    Dec 20, 2013
    montpellier france
    alain
    the sigma 30mm 2.8 is a very very good lens (i found it better than a leica summicron R 35mm or distagon 35mm at same aperture ) and cheap.
    You can try a manual focusing 50mm, minotla as many says or olympus zuiko or many brand for cheap ( less than 50e with an adaptor )
     
  17. mikefromli

    mikefromli TalkEmount Regular

    49
    Dec 29, 2014
    Long Island, NY USA
    Michael
    The sel3518 is a 50 equivalent it may be what you thin the 50 is its been sharp and lots of bockeh it was a great lens right after the kit and kit zoom