Delivery Room Lens: Buy or Use Current Lens

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Thanks to everyone that has responded so far.

bdelva: What body did you use? Did the baby come during the day or night?

Then it's safe to assume shooting at 1.8 with either the 35 or 50 would be the way to go. I'm not that afraid of pushing the ISO on the D300 that much. Hopefully it has slightly better ISO performance than the D40.

My other concern shooting at 1.8 is the narrow DOF. I dont want half the baby's face blurry. I know I could just step back. Problem is I'd rather stay as close to the wife for support of course. Dont want her thinking I'm just there as a photographer :eek:.

Ok now....what are the advantages (if any) between the 35 or 50.
Marc, I used the 50mm f1.4 on the D300, and I stopped the lens a bit, because I learned my lesson from the birth of my first son where many of my pictures came out blurry because of the narrow depth of field.

Back then I had the D70s for only a couple of months, so I barely new what I was doing...as far as pushing the ISO I doubt that you will go above ISO400, and I did not start taking any pictures until the baby was laying under the heating lamp.
That gave me a chance to stay next to my wife for support, and depending on the setup of the hospital you might not eve stay in the same room after the delivery.

In my case they showed the baby briefly to my wife, and then we were off to another room where they check the baby and did the weighing.

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D300 w/50mm f/1.4 @ 3.2 1/160sec ISO400

Hope this helps, and I'm sure you'll do fine...don't forget to post some pictures.
 
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I like many highly suggest you use a 35mm prime.

Reasons

1. obvious IQ superiority
2. lightweight
3. you have much more important things to worry about than zooming around
4. Rarely do people look at a high quality image from a prime and say they wished they had a wider zoom instead.
 
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the big question: is flash ok to use ?
if yes than any lens wide enough and i would think a zoom would be better, maybe the 24-70.....
(why it has to be a small lens I don't get)
if no on flash then f1.4 or 1.8 would be nice
but bouncing the flash off the ceiling would be the best for IQ
 
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I am in the position of experiencing home births - w-a-y- back... The midwife was not too happy about the fumes from the exploding magnesium powder, even then... :biggrin:

(Good luck - whatever you decide on!)
 
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Just a quick comment from the other side. Please do not look at this experience as a photo op. I have yet to see a keeper photo from the delivery room that could not be reproduced with less hassels a few hours later. As a father, do not miss the experience because you are too busy taking pictures of it, and you may need to be there for your wife. I left my camera and recorded with my heart and personally would not have traded it for any photo- took lots of pictures later. Mom and baby are not going to like how they look right now anyway.
Gary
 
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I'm with those who say forget the camera and support your wife. What's more important? I had no camera in the delivery room and don't regret it one bit.

Ronnie
 
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Fulfilling the necessary role in the delivery room and taking photographs are not mutually exclusive. Yes, there will be a lot more for you to do than taking photos, but being able to take photographs moments after the delivery is a great experience, and I am very glad that I did it. So is my wife. I would also concur that the 35 1.8 is probably the easiest way to go. 50mm 1.8 would be fine too.

And as for not seeing any photos in the delivery room that are not "reproduceable" I would only say two things. First, you can't reproduce emotion and moments, and two, there was an image posted in a thread around here that was possibly one of the most stunning and beautiful photographs i have ever seen that was taken just after the birth. I'll see if I can dig it up.

Shoot it looks like the photo is gone. This was the thread i think. https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/showthread.php?t=215200 the photo was by onemorelens. Hopefully he will post it again if we ask him.
 
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Wayne, PA
With my daughter, who was born on June 26th, I took my Canon (yikes!!) SD1100is point and shoot....while the room had lots of windows, I didn't want to use flash at all, and my 85mm 1.8 would have required me to be too far. I was VERY happy with the pictures I got from that little camera...I picked it mainly for its macro capabilities and I was not disappointed...gotta love the little toes and fingers!!

Good luck, enjoy the experience and if you are wearing shorts and flip flops...watch out for the afterbirth splashes!!!!

T
 
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Apr 8, 2008
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Georgia
When I had my daughter (18 months ago), my husband got a few pictures with our crappy p&s. (I got a dslr a few months later!) I would be really sad if he didn't get those first snapshots, but he was able to be there for me too. Even though the pictures aren't great quality, those pictures are priceless. So my suggestion is get a few pictures, but don't go crazy. Definitely be with your wife and don't annoy her with the camera in her face the whole time. :p

The 50mm would be good enough, but I think the 35mm 1.8 would be better so you can be closer. I plan to get a 35mm before we have our next one.

Congrats!
 
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When I had my daughter (18 months ago), my husband got a few pictures with our crappy p&s. (I got a dslr a few months later!) I would be really sad if he didn't get those first snapshots, but he was able to be there for me too. Even though the pictures aren't great quality, those pictures are priceless. So my suggestion is get a few pictures, but don't go crazy. Definitely be with your wife and don't annoy her with the camera in her face the whole time. :p

The 50mm would be good enough, but I think the 35mm 1.8 would be better so you can be closer. I plan to get a 35mm before we have our next one.

Congrats!
I just noticed the link didnt show up in my original post, here it is:

http://www.theacantilados.com/gallery/9159920_7isFS#611073304_BZPfC

Randy- no flash allowed by hospital.

Jan-I have to agree with every comment you made

Alyssa I think you said it best "priceless", I understand many people concern over not making this a "photo opportunity" or giving support to my wife. My main concern is not the photography. This is my second child and was there for the first one as well, so I'm not going into this without the knowledge of what goes on in the delivery room. I have a very supportive and understanding wife who knows that my family is my first priority. She also supports and benefits from my NAS and joy of photography. Shooting a few shots as the baby comes into this world takes but mere seconds vs the hours days and years I will be there to support my family. The memories of the moment are wonderful but these "priceless" pictures I know my wife and I will enjoy later and hopefully my son's will cherish and be proud of as well.

That said, I usually come pretty well prepared or like to be. That was the purpose of this thread. I will not be fumbling with lenses, settings, etc while the baby is coming and my wife needs me the most. It is simply to get a baseline for me to start off with and give myself the best chances possible to capture the moment (esp since I wont be doing this again). All of your help has been well received and notated. Thank you all again for your advice and concerns.
 
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Or you can just ask hire someone there to be in the delivery room with you instead.

LOL
LOL, we had one to many people in there the last time. Just my wife and I this time. Dont think I'd be able to get over a "stranger" in the room at the same time (well other than medical staff)
 
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Fulfilling the necessary role in the delivery room and taking photographs are not mutually exclusive. Yes, there will be a lot more for you to do than taking photos, but being able to take photographs moments after the delivery is a great experience, and I am very glad that I did it. So is my wife. I would also concur that the 35 1.8 is probably the easiest way to go. 50mm 1.8 would be fine too.

And as for not seeing any photos in the delivery room that are not "reproduceable" I would only say two things. First, you can't reproduce emotion and moments, and two, there was an image posted in a thread around here that was possibly one of the most stunning and beautiful photographs i have ever seen that was taken just after the birth. I'll see if I can dig it up.

Shoot it looks like the photo is gone. This was the thread i think. https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/showthread.php?t=215200 the photo was by onemorelens. Hopefully he will post it again if we ask him.
Jan,
Thats quite the complement! Thanks.
You're right recreating this exact moment would be very hard if not impossible.

I had thought long and hard what lens I would have on my D3 for the delivery. In the end I went with a zoom (24-70) over a fast prime since it really wasnt a moment I would be changing lenses. It is such an intense moment I wasnt thinking about photography and the shots were taken at a crazy f/2.8 1/1000 ISO 3200. I had not anticipated the intense surgical light when setting the iso then forgot about it in the excitement. Good thing my camera is so forgiving. I was also shooting at 9fps so I have a whole series.
I dont remember exactly (it is a very intense moment) but I think I was holding my wife's hand and shooting with the other hand - maybe it was a good thing I had the shutter speed so high by mistake since this is a very heavy combo and I'm sure my one hand was shaking quite abit.

I forgot which shot of the series I had originally posted but here is one:

D3, nikon 24-70 @36mm f/2.8 1/1000 iso 3200
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


Someone asked before about the 'hole' in his chest but that was an artifact of the intense lighting. Here is a recent shot without the 'birth defect'
View attachment 390034
 
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John

Thank you for posting this here. I've seen the photo before and it's just and dramatic and invokes so much emotion even on the second go around. This shot probably makes you feel like you are reliving the event over and over. What a great feeling. There is no way you can recreate this at all.

I also wanted to ask you what metering did you use for this (or what you can remember)?
 
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John,
I love that first shot...the lighting makes it....I did the same thing, held the wife with one hand and had the camera in the other hand.
 
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Marc, I had my baby year and half ago and 2nd is coming at end of Oct. I would use 35mm at F/2.8, You will just have enough DOF. You will not have too much room to step back. I wish I had 35mm lens. There is one thing you have to be careful is WB. I don't like AW at delivery room but work fine at check up room. with the lens you have , you don't need to worry about Hi ISO. iso 400 is good. congratulations!
 
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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Hate to be a wet blanket, but why do you want to shoot it in the delivery room? The baby will look the same six hours later but your wife needs ALL your support during and immediately after the delivery.

Bruce
 
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Your first job is support your wife. I got chance to take photo after baby was delivered, and only photo had my wife is when they showed baby to wife. So you want light weight, fast lens can easily hold with one had. That is your 35mm f/1.8. If you have D40, use it. because it is small. Don't bring D300 with grip on. Have some one hold your camera during wife laboring.
30mm f/1.8 @ 2.8 ISO400, AP. CW metering, change WB to lighting condition in the room.
 

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