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Tilt shift or lens for indoor photography

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 11:15 am
by vneilknobbe
Hi All

I am planning a trip to the UK next year and I want to be well prepared for both taking photos of buildings and indoors.

I am tossing up between getting a Tilt-shift lens and making do with my current lenses (boosting the ISO as required) for indoor work or doing tilt adjustment in Photoshop and getting a fast f2 or quicker lens for indoors.

Any opinions or thoughts would be of great interest.

(Oh, currently I am using a Canon 5D MkII and have a 24-105 f4, 70-300 f2.8 (though a little large for indoors at times), and a Tamron 90mm f2.8 that I can use. I plan on upgrading the the 5D MkIII before I go to have that as my main camera and keep the MkII as a backup body.)

Re: Tilt shift or lens for indoor photography

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 3:19 pm
by sthuman
A tilt shift lens can be quite tricky to master. You say you'll be going next year, so you'd have some time to learn it. But it's still tricky. On the other hand, software does quite well at correcting keystoning or other distortion. Tilt shift lenses are often quite bulky and heavy. You have a great range of focal length covered and can use ISO boost for indoor work so I think you'd be OK with what you have. Most people I know who bought a tilt shift seldom use it. You wouldn't gain a ton of abilities with a faster lens since you have 2.8 lenses already, and even f/4 with the ISO abilities of today's cameras would do quite well indoors. My suggestion would be to save your money or perhaps look into something in a fast wider angle type lens. Maybe something like a 35mm f/1.8 or something wider than 24. Just my two cents, others may think differently.

Re: Tilt shift or lens for indoor photography

PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 8:10 pm
by vneilknobbe
Hi Steve

Thanks for the input it gives me a couple things to think on.

Re: Tilt shift or lens for indoor photography

PostPosted: Sun Aug 04, 2013 2:43 pm
by amoxtli
Reasons why you should consider not getting a tilt shift lens:
1. It must be used with a tripod. Many interior locations will not allow you to use a tripod.
(When I lived in the UK no National Trust locations etc. I remember would allow a tripod indoors, and many did not allow indoor photography at all)
2. Even if you are good at using the lens, a tiltshift lens requires time for set-up, which you probably won't have when shooting on locations mentioned above.
3. Tilt shift lenses have a fixed focal length and are not as versatile fast wide to medium zooms.
4. Unless you use tilt shift lenses a lot, they are not worth getting because of their limited application.
5. Distortion can be corrected using Lightroom or Photoshop software.
6. The "toy" effect can be achieved using software like, etc.

I shoot architectural interiors frequently and use 14-24mm f/2.8 and 24-70mm f/2.8 lenses, and a full frame camera that does well at high iso settings. I use them both tripod mounted and hand held depending on location. I posted two of my recent assignments on PBase.

I don't want to discourage you completely. You may want to consider renting a tilt shift lens, to see how you like it. Also interestingly, Canon recently released this lens:

Best of luck. Regards, Walter