18-55mm & 55-200mm cheat sheets

edited October 2016 Posted in » Nikon D3300 Forum
I just got a great deal on the Nikon D3300 with the 18-55mm and 55-200mm lenses and it's my first DSLR camera so I'm interested in your tips.
Since I'm a beginner this will probably sound naive, but I noticed that the tips for both lenses are mostly for shooting the same things at what appears from the description to be roughly the same distances. So I guess my question is, are you providing tips to shoot exactly the same things on both sheets because people may have only one or the other lens or are you providing tips to get different effects with the two different lenses while shooting shooting these same subjects? Since I'm new to the DSLR world I'm interested in knowing when to choose one lens over the other.


  • I'm sure @moose can clarify some, but my impression from reading the cheat cards is that the difference is mainly in making the best use of the different lenses. The main difference between one and the other will be in your decision of what distance you will be from your subject, and how much you want your field of view to include. The longer the lens, the greater the distance, and the narrower the field. In addition, the longer the lens, the shallower the depth of field, thus for a nice out of focus blur in portraits and the like, you benefit from a longer focal length.

    Most of Moose's tips are to get accurate and full range exposures with critical issues such as focus, shadow, and the like right, and not special or trick effects. If you look at the home page you will see that Moose favors accuracy and tonal range.
  • edited October 2016
    Thanks @BRUTO for the reply. I've gone ahead and ordered the cheat cards as it seems a good way to get started. I've also had a look at some of Moose's videos and can see there's a lot of good information there. Luckily,
    I got this camera just in time for the fall color and Halloween season so I'll be trying to come up to speed over the next few weeks. I'm sure I'll learn more as I use my initial two kit lenses. I've already watched the video on the 50mm lens, so I may get that. And I see Moose has another video on focal length which may just answer my questions on when to use each of the kit lenses. Anyway, thanks again!
  • Hey @artwar - Congrats on the Nikon D3300! It's a great camera. @bruto provided excellent advice as always. The cheat cards are designed around the strengths of the lens. For example, the 18-55mm set and the 55-200mm set share the same "Portrait (Daytime)" cheat card. However, the 18-55mm set calls for a focal length of 55mm and an aperture of f/5.6, while the 55-200mm set calls for a focal length of 70mm and an aperture of f/4.2 to maximize background blur. Additionally, the 55-200mm set has scenarios for subjects at a great distance like birds, wildlife, airshows, etc... Happy clicking!
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