A&P [Newbie] Low Light Prime or Dedicated Flash?

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by nakile, Oct 25, 2009.

  1. nakile

    nakile New Member

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    So in the past four months I've started to get "serious" with photography with a D40 (heh). Shooting in PSAM, doing post processing work and all that. The only thing I'm having a problem with is my indoor photography.

    Right now my options are to either use the pop-up flash (which I hate the look of) or crank the ISO up (works ok for anything except social events where I just end up with blurry moving people).

    To fix this I'm thinking of either getting an dedicated flash that I can bounce or a fast normal prime.

    I'd like to go for the prime because I could use it for more than just indoor shots, but I'm not sure it would be enough to get my shutter speeds high enough to prevent blurry people at social events. That, and sometimes available lighting just sucks in general at which point I would be screwed anyway.

    I'd like to go with that flash because I know that no matter what I would have some good light, but I hate firing flashes off because it can start to annoy people and I don't like to bring attention to myself. Being semi-stealthy is part of my style. Also, if I'm in a museum or something I might as well just leave the flash at home.

    If I went with the prime I would most likely get myself Nikon's 35mm f1.8 DX. My flash option would probably be the SB-400 because I don't want anything huge and I can work around not having portrait bounce.

    What do you all think would work better for me in the long run?
     
  2. EWhytsell

    EWhytsell New Member

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    Sometimes I use an index card at an angle in front of my pop up. Gives a little more light. Sometimes I also put a little white nylon bag that I made over it. Otherwise the SB-400 will be a nice addition.
     
  3. huntz0r

    huntz0r New Member

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    You can get a diffuser for the pop-up flash for a few bucks and try that, much cheaper than a speedlight.

    I faced the same choice and got the 35/1.8. It does great indoors without a flash assuming the lights are on. For a dimly lit party you're gonna need a flash though. The prime is useful for so many situations, outdoors in dim light or shooting anything fast moving or for portrait type shots it's way better than the kit lens.
     
  4. wrong1

    wrong1 Member

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    Go with the flash for now. Nothing will improve your photography more than good lighting control. I agree on the sb600 too... At the very least. Better yet save up for a used 800 or 900. They are worth it for the CLS alone, never mind the added power.
     
  5. High_Boost

    High_Boost New Member

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    another vote for the flash..
    you can always get the prime down the road

    if you get the 35 1.8, you will probably be disappointed in its ability to stop moving targets in the dark..
    chances are you will still need to jack the iso way up, and although I am not super familiar with the D40, my guess is its high iso performance is lacking
     
  6. havelegs

    havelegs Active Member

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    The D40 handles higher ISO really well but I would probably go with the SB600, it's a great flash for the price.
     

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