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Which lens for night photography?

Goner
Contributor

really enjoy taking photos at night and I just love the way pictures at night look, I'm extremely new at photography in general and I have a Canon 600D T3i with a 18-55mm Lens.

 

I want to get another lens but I'm not exactly sure which would be the best lens for night photography. Any recommendations or tips?

 

Thank you

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION


@Goner wrote:

With everything you have said etc, Do you think I should buy the Magnus or the Silk Sprint pro II ? Some people are saying to get a ball head Tripod and I'm not sure if that's different than what you recommended.


Ball heads are the easiest tripod head to use, because they are the fastest to re-adjust.  It usually involves adjusting just one knob, instead of two, or more. 

 

Not every manufacturer that makes decent tripods also makes decent heads.  As i noted earlier, I purchase tripods when they are on sale, usually at clearance discount pricing.  I do not think there are any "decent" tripod kits out there that sell for a list price of less than $100.

 

The "Silk Sprint pro II " that you mentioned has a load rating of less than 5 pounds.  Be aware that load ratings are usually measured with the center column fully retracted.  Extending the center column only adds to the instability to the tripod.  Also, take note of how tall a tripod can be both with and without the center column extended.  Not every manufacturer releases data about how tall their tripods are with the center column fully retracted.  The head lacks a friction control, and I am uncertain if you can remove the head and replace with a better one.  Not good.

 

Typically, you want a tripod that is rated at least 3-4 times the maximum load that you expect to mount on the tripod.  I would advise a tripod rated at least 15-20 pounds.  Weak tripods can vibrate in a gentle breeze like tuning fork.  A good tripod will be lifetime investment.

 

A quick check at my favorite online store, B&H, shows a The FVY28AIH1 Velocity Series 2 Aluminum Tripod and IH1 Ball Head from Benro is on sale at close to 40% off list price.  It is rated at 17 pounds, and includes a case.  One of the best things I like about the Benro brand is that most tripods include a case, and Benro makes very good cases.

 

Please, do not consider that mention of a particular model as a product endorsement.  It is just an example of what I consider to be a "decent" tripod.

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"The right mouse button is your friend."

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22 REPLIES 22


@Goner wrote:

really enjoy taking photos at night and I just love the way pictures at night look, I'm extremely new at photography in general and I have a Canon 600D T3i with a 18-55mm Lens.

 

I want to get another lens but I'm not exactly sure which would be the best lens for night photography. Any recommendations or tips?

 

Thank you


For outdoor photography at night, the most important tool is a good, solid tripod, not another lens.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA

AGREE with the Tripod recommendation. SOLID when set up & locked into position.

"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."


@cicopo wrote:

AGREE with the Tripod recommendation. SOLID when set up & locked into position.


AGREE with the tripod suggestions.  Do NOT buy a plastic tripod from the big box store.  All that plastic tripods do is shake and break.  Buy a professional grade tripod, one with separate detachable head.  It should last you longer than the camera.  You should expect to spend between $100 and $200 for a quality tripod kit when they are on sale.

 

I suggest buying a tripod with a ball head, which are the simplest and easiest to use.  Make sure to get a ball head with a friction adjustment.  Most manufacturers sell "tripod kits", that include a tripod, a head, and many times a quality case.

 

I prefer Induro/Benro tripods.  Manfrotto is another good brand.  I prefer heads that use "Arca Swiss" compatible, camera plates.  If you do not understand what I am talking about, please ask questions.

 

[EDIT] For night shots, learn about White Balance.

--------------------------------------------------------
"The right mouse button is your friend."


@Waddizzle wrote:

@cicopo wrote:

AGREE with the Tripod recommendation. SOLID when set up & locked into position.


AGREE with the tripod suggestions.  Do NOT buy a plastic tripod from the big box store.  All that plastic tripods do is shake and break.  Buy a professional grade tripod, one with separate detachable head.  It should last you longer than the camera.  You should expect to spend between $100 and $200 for a quality tripod kit when they are on sale.

 

I suggest buying a tripod with a ball head, which are the simplest and easiest to use.  Make sure to get a ball head with a friction adjustment.  Most manufacturers sell "tripod kits", that include a tripod, a head, and many times a quality case.

 

I prefer Induro/Benro tripods.  Manfrotto is another good brand.  I prefer heads that use "Arca Swiss" compatible, camera plates.  If you do not understand what I am talking about, please ask questions.

 

[EDIT] For night shots, learn about White Balance.


You want your tripod to be lightweight, stable, and cheap. You can have any two of those, but not all three. The usual reason for a tripod is to allow for very slow shutter speeds, and in that case stability is crucial. And unless you're going to carry it on long hikes, you probably don't care how much a tripod weighs.

 

So I'd go along with Waddizzle's suggestion of a Benro or something similar. I have two Benros (full-size and tabletop) and am quite happy with them. They're heavy but rock solid, and they weren't particularly expensive.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA

B from B

" I'd go along with Waddizzle's suggestion of a Benro or something similar. ..."

 

I don't.  Here's why.  Benro is a high end manufacturer and makes products that the average Rebel owner has not use of or benefit from.  Nothing wrong with buying a Benro or Manfrotto but there are very good buys that are quite serviceable for much less money.

Yeah, I spent a grand on a tripod but I used it professionally for years.  The average joe just doesn't do that. Slik makes the Slik Sprint Pro II Tripod at around $80 bucks and it will do anything most people want. The Magnus VT-300 Video Tripod with Fluid Head by Pearstone is really nice for a DSLR at approx, $80 bucks. There are a lot of good tripods for even less.

 

What I want to leave you with is, if it is plastic it is junk.  Never been a fan of Benro as I always have used Bogen or Manfrotto but they each may make a good affordable tripod, too. I haven't checked lately.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!


@ebiggs1 wrote:

B from B

" I'd go along with Waddizzle's suggestion of a Benro or something similar. ..."

 

I don't.  Here's why.  Benro is a high end manufacturer and makes products that the average Rebel owner has not use of or benefit from.  Nothing wrong with buying a Benro or Manfrotto but there are very good buys that are quite serviceable for much less money.

Yeah, I spent a grand on a tripod but I used it professionally for years.  The average joe just doesn't do that. Slik makes the Slik Sprint Pro II Tripod at around $80 bucks and it will do anything most people want. The Magnus VT-300 Video Tripod with Fluid Head by Pearstone is really nice for a DSLR at approx, $80 bucks. There are a lot of good tripods for even less.

 

What I want to leave you with is, if it is plastic it is junk.  Never been a fan of Benro as I always have used Bogen or Manfrotto but they each may make a good affordable tripod, too. I haven't checked lately.


"Benro is a high end manufacturer..."? You're kidding, right? When I bought my first Benro, I thought they were a B&H house brand.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA

OK, B form B,

Not kidding!  Didn't say they were Manfrotto/Bogen or Gitzo.  They are not the B&H house brand unless B&H made an order for some.  The point, must have been missed, is you don't need the top of the line or even the middle of the line for the average amateur enthusiasts photographer.

The previous posts seem to infer that.  The OP can get into a very nice tripod that will do all he wants for $80 bucks or less.  That was my point.

Plastic is the key.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

I appreciate the help! Thank you 🙂

With everything you have said etc, Do you think I should buy the Magnus or the Silk Sprint pro II ? Some people are saying to get a ball head Tripod and I'm not sure if that's different than what you recommended.

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