How We Shoot Video at Night With the Tamron 35mm f/1.8

It's rare that I use prime lenses and I also don't shoot video with Nikon gear very often anymore. But, if I'm in an extremely dark environment, the Nikon D850 and Tamron 35mm f/1.8 is a killer combination. 

For years we shot all of our videos exclusively on Nikon DSLRs. A year ago we made the switch to the Panasonic GH5 and we never looked back. It's better in almost every way but two: high ISO performance and extremely shallow depth of field. On the rare occasion that I'm forced to shoot at night, the GH5 isn't going to cut it. Luckily, for short clips, the D850 is a fantastic video camera, especially in low light. 

To capture the cleanest image I'll also need a really fast lens. I own a 50mm f/1.2 lens that I love but without image stabilization, it doesn't really work handheld. For this video I decided to grab my Tamron 35mm f/1.8 with vibration compensation. This lens is able to shoot incredibly sharp footage at f/1.8 with beautiful, shallow depth of field. If you can get your subject in focus, the footage will look incredible.

I still prefer zoom lenses for the convenience, but I do own a few primes for specialized shoots like this one. The GH5 with 12-35mm f/2.8 is still my favorite combination, but it's not the perfect tool for every job.

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Kenneth O. Soto's picture

The D850 with that 35mm f/1.8 really make for a killer combo.

Fritz Asuro's picture

Lee is surprised the same way I was after reviewing the video files from the D850. People should start considering Nikon now for videos.

Ya I was impressed for sure. Too bad the rolling shutter is pretty bad and it crops in for faster frame rates. Still very impressive though.

Fritz Asuro's picture

But most DSLR/stills camera suffers from rolling shutter, so I would forgive Nikon for that.

What gimbal did you use??

Interesting- that gimbal seems a bit small for the d850 - but if it works well that's great to know!!

Good stuff, man.

The quality is great, but imagine how it might stack up against the A7SII with a 35mm f1.2 !

Have you looked at the 0.95 m4/3 lenses? There's a voightlander 17.5/0.95 I think you'd enjoy....

I may get one with the new gh5s