Thom on D800 lens choice

Started May 14, 2012 | Discussions thread
SNRatio Regular Member • Posts: 476
Re: Boat sails. Thom on dock. And Venice still lovely

venice wrote:

SNRatio wrote:

There are several important point for non-pros, and his final (1st version) words are:

"This also brings me to my last thought before I duck down deep behind my bunker: maybe the 24-120mm f/4 is the right choice. Coupled with three primes, what would you be missing?"

Any semblance of portability.

I don't understand the problem, but I don't need to, either. Zoom or superzoom plus primes is a tried and true combination. Main reason for me not to use a superzoom very much, is that I will have to put on the primes so often, compared to a more moderate zoom, like the 24-120/4 on FX or the 16-85 in DX.

And the more primes you throw in here, the more it will be possible to avoid the weaknesses of the 24-120/4 or similar zooms. With a series, say, 20 - 28 - 50 - 85 -135, it's hard to tell what I would be missing in 90-95% of ordinary shooting.

Anything over 135. Any hope of having the right lens on the camera to get the shot.

I would say the problem is not a lens choice problem then. Throwing in something like the 70-300/4.5-5.6 VR would be a simple way out. And if you are shooting wide and tele simultaneously all the time, you should seriously consider to use two bodies.

Therefore, it is safe to buy the D800 for performance

Finally, the conclusion Thom should know enough to emphasize, especially for less experienced shooters.

, but not for some specified level of resolution. In particular, with el cheapo primes it will be very hard or impossible to get the high resolution all over

I'd wager one could find inexpensive primes on a D800 that would beat the pants off of expensive zooms on a D3 for resolution.

Sure, the 50/1.8G, the old AF 85/1.8D and even the AF 35/2D (well stepped down) could do an adequate job. The series 20 - 28 - 50 - 85 - 135 was chosen because of this - there are 1.8G primes either released, patented (135/1.8 - but probably won't be inexpensive, though) or expected (20/1.8 - may be slower, though: Compare the Sigma 20/1.8 and the Zeiss 21/2.8..)

But, that would not sell many new lenses would it?

I think you have really got this wrong, completely wrong. If anything, the D800(E) exposes the weaknesses of the holy trinity, most shooters will have to fill in with primes to get good enough performance for all needs, and these primes don't have to be very expensive, witness the 1.8G series. Therefore, because the 14-24 and 24-70 are not completely adequate solutions anymore, the natural tendency will rather be to concentrate on primes, and I think Thom's advice fully reflects this.

This will sell more new lenses by numbers, but probably at a lower total price.

And while most el cheapo lenses could be made to look quite good on the D700, their flaws are exposed in an entirely different way on the D800. Compared to D700/D3 they may still look very nice on D800 (just downsample to 12MP..), but you don't get a D800 for doing D700 comparisons, do you?

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