My journey of photography began in 1999 when I took two photography courses. It was darkroom and general photography courses. I used the classic Nikon FM2 film camera SLR for both of the courses.
Eight years later, I was re-introduced to digital photography when I joined The Bucknellian, a student-run newspaper at Bucknell University. I was appointed as photo editor. My responsibilities include assigning photography tasks to photographers and editing pictures. I also take many pictures.
Most of my assignments from the newspaper include social events, lectures, portraitures, sports and some other university events. The newspaper provides me with Pentax k100 Digital SLR Camera and two lenses: Pentax 28-80mm and Tamron 70-300mm.
In the end of Fall 2007, I bought myself a Canon 40D with kit lens Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM. I bought this camera after a careful research on many brands in the market.
First option that I have is to buy a low light lens for Pentax. That will be including Pentax 70mm f/2.4 pancake lens and a nice zoom lens. But I figured out that it will not solve my problem because the camera itself is not fast especially the auto focus and shutter lag.
I have another idea which is to buy a higher quality camera from Pentax which is K10D so I can use the lenses. But after reading reviews and test results, I found out that the K10D is not significantly faster although it has many features that I like such as Shake Reduction, weather selling, dust reduction, and two LCD screens.
Later, I tried to search for other system. Olympus and Sony systems do not attract me because of their below average noise handling and lens selection. This left Canon and Nikon. After searching about their lenses, I found out that in overall, Canon has cheaper lenses toe to toe, and the Canon 40D camera fits my requirement and budget.
The kit lens, Canon 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM is fast and accurate. It is a decent performer in low light because of the small aperture. Because of this limitation, I bought another lens which is Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM I am very satisfied with this lens because its ability on low light. The lens is bright and the result is very good even in 1600 ISO. It is an excellent lens for portraitures.
To complement both of lenses, I bought Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8. This lens is reasonably cheap but it does not up to my expectation. It produces weird color and very ‘noisy’ in ISO 800 and above.
At the end of last semester, I sold both of my lenses, Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM and Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 to buy Canon EF-S 17-55mm IS USM. This lens is expensive but it is very good lens. Unlike Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8, it is very sharp on the edge and corner and creates a smoother blur in the background. The IS (Image Stabilization works very well) and make this lens superb performer in low light situation.
The only complaint of this lens is I find 55mm is not long enough. It might be because I am used to Canon EF 28-135mm range.
In the beginning of 2009. I realized that I need a better low light camera especially for indoor sports, dances performance, so I decided to get full frame camera. I was torn between Canon 5D mark II and Nikon D700. After careful consideration, I go ahead and get Nikon D700 instead, because it is more suitable for moving objects, beside Canon 5D mkii is $1000 more expensive at that time because shortage of supply.
With the camera, I get Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 HSM II Macro, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8, Nikkor 85mm f/1.4D, Nikkor 24mm f/2.8D. I sell most of my Canon lenses and keep only EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8. The full frame experience so far is exceptional!