To get a new camera body and/or flash or not, that is the question

Hi everyone,

So what I mainly shoot, or at least what I advertise on my website, is babies/children, families, dogs and horses. I now find myself doing a lot of group shots and head shots for the staff at local businesses (which I can use my strobes for) as well as shooting indoor events in situations such as hotel ballrooms or in private homes, big difference I know.
I currently have a Nikon D300 and a very old Vivitar 285HV flash. I find that while shooting with this flash I am constantly changing settings and trying to figure out what the heck I should set both the flash and my camera to for the best results. Today I was using it with a softbox attachment and felt like I could only use it to shoot horizontally since I was bouncing the light off of the ceiling. Clearly I need help! I have some important indoor jobs coming up and don't want to be left looking like an idiot or worse yet, have crummy pictures to show. I was looking at the Nikon SB-910 AF speedlight, is this the answer to my problems? Thanks for any advice you can give me!

Comments

  • Rob van HoutRob van Hout NetherlandsMember Posts: 86
    I have the SB-910 and I can safely say it's the best flash I've ever had. It's powerful, recycles very, very fast and offers lots of control. If you want to use it off-camera, you can control it via commander mode or SU-4, or use TTL triggers (YongNuo YN-622N's are excellent and very affordable).

    "The grizzly is a symbol of what is right with the world." — Charles Jonkel, American bear biologistwww.robvanhout.net
  • sarahashleyphotossarahashleyphotos Member Posts: 208
    I second YongNuo! They are faster than my Canon flash!
  • Thank you both! One more question... The lens I was shooting with was a Nikon DX 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6. Up until recently I thought this was a good lens until I went back to using my Nikon AF 50mm 1:1.8 and wow, what a difference in quality! I still need a good 18-55 mm range lens but I think the one I have isn't doing the trick. Suggestions? Thanks!
  • Rob van HoutRob van Hout NetherlandsMember Posts: 86
    The 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6 is a really good zoom lens for DX. For FX I can highly recommend the 24-70mm f/2.8 (sharp, good bokeh and very fast AF). There's also a DX equivalent in the 17-55mm f/2.8, but I don't have experience with that one.
    "The grizzly is a symbol of what is right with the world." — Charles Jonkel, American bear biologistwww.robvanhout.net
  • Thank you Rob! So I have a D300 body right now but am thinking of upgrading to FX. Do you think it is worth it and if so which bodies would you suggest (that aren't a million dollars preferably :)
    This is a amateur question but can you use a FX lens on a DX camera or vice versa? Thanks again, this is so helpful.
  • Rob van HoutRob van Hout NetherlandsMember Posts: 86
    edited September 2014
    Hi Robin,

    You can use FX lenses on a DX camera (in fact, your 50mm is an FX lens). Vice versa is not recommended though as it would give very heavy vignetting or black corners (although most FX cameras feature a DX crop mode).

    If you want to switch to FX, the D610 is the best option for you at the moment; the sensor is fantastic and the body is still very compact. Alternatives are the D750 (more action-oriented) and D810 (higher resolution), but both are considerably more expensive.
    "The grizzly is a symbol of what is right with the world." — Charles Jonkel, American bear biologistwww.robvanhout.net
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