What would be a good basic lens collection?

Started Mar 27, 2013 | Discussions thread
gear1box
Contributing MemberPosts: 617Gear list
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Re: What would be a good basic lens collection?
In reply to GreenMountainGirl, Mar 29, 2013

Ma'am --

Mainly photography is about lighting, composition, technique, and timing.  Lens quality (provided more-or-less of the right focal length and adequate aperture) is far down the list of photographic limitations for most people.  Even post-processing is more important for most images than initial quality.  And you have a fairly flexible collection as it is.

But . . . you asked, and i have been shoot the D7000 since it came out with, crikey, over a dozen -- well, okay, two dozen -- Nikon lenses of various flavors.

Your collection is reasonably complete for the assignments you cite.  For the 4.8 micron sensor on your D7000, though, none of them truly exploits the resolution available unless you are very careful with aperture selection and technique, and even there the corners will be wanting in some focal lengths, particularly toward the long end of your tele.

Also i note that you have at least one much-used focal length/FOV:  16mm (or 24mm FOV in FX), which is a very very useful one indoors, for example, or for landscapes.

Since i infer that you do not shoot for cash, price is an issue.  There is no question that the most cost effective high resolution lenses (even absolutely most sharp in many cases) are primes.   So, heck, start with the now canonical Nikon "f1.8s":  28mm, 50mm, and 85mm.  These are a great trio that work well with your D7000 (as i can attest) and you will never regret getting even after you have gone on to other bodies.

They don't solve your wide or your tele problem though.  On the wide end i lean toward the  . . . Samyang 14mm: gawd-awfully sharp and who needs to focus a 14mm anyway?  Get the one with the Nikon chip (fer $20 more).  On the long end, it is the 300mm f4, as other posters have said.

I cannot agree with the 70-300mmVR on the D7000.  My copy is frustratingly soft past 200mm, which is a problem i did not have with it on my earlier, 10meg, Nikon.  The VR is excellent, though, and it works well with a monopod.

If you have cash for mega$ zooms, don't look here.  All the lenses i cite are FX and will be useful when you get a 36meg FX body in a few years . . .

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gary ray

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Semi-professional in early 1970s; just a putzer since then. interests: historical sites, virginia, motorcycle racing. A nikon user more by habit than choice; still, nikon seems to work well for me.

 gear1box's gear list:gear1box's gear list
Canon PowerShot G1 X Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 Nikon D600 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G VR Panasonic Lumix G Vario 45-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +9 more
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