primes or zoom for my 5D Mark ii

Started Jan 21, 2013 | Discussions thread
OP mcbry111 Forum Member • Posts: 60
Re: I am using more and more primes vs zooms

Doug_PS wrote:

Antonio_2 wrote:

I used to shoot 5d + 24-105 and sometimes 70-200/4 is. After a long walk I found this 2 lens combo too heavy at the point it influenced negatively on my mood and for this reason I was taking less photos or photos with less attention or passion. Also for this reason I did many holidays with the 450d and more compact zooms, losing the advantage of superior FF IQ, a real pity.

Then I gradually converted to primes. I found a very comfortable shoulder bag that allow me to swap quickly lens, so i went more and more often out with 5d and 3 primes, usually 28/2.8 (old one without IS) 50/1.8 and 135/2.8 or 85/1.8, sometime I carry also a 1.4xTC. I have no strain at all walking with this setup even for long, long time, the camera+lens is much lighter with any of the primes (vs zoom), more compact and get less attention from people. The results are better than 24-105, especially in lower light and I have more control over DOF and more fun shooting. I am even tempted to sell the zooms but then I think I might need them sometime, so I always delay the decision.

I recently came from a nice tour of Morocco, every day in a different place, always on the move. I walked also alone in places supposed to be dangerous and I was always comfortable and agile swapping quickly my small primes on my 5d depending on the needs. If you are interested I can show you the pics I took.

To make it short I strongly invite you too look for a comfortable shoulder (side) bag and try to go out at least with 2 primes: 50/1.8 and 28 or 35, the old ones are cheap and IMO produce great images, better than 24-105 for sure. Then if you like it you can add a 100/2.0 or 85/1.8 or 135/2.8. I only mentioned affordable lenses, they have anyway great IQ and DOF control compared to zooms and are small and light.

Good luck and have fun shooting.


+1 for Antonio's comments. I've got a 5DMKii and only primes to use with it. I just got back from a trip to Paris over Christmas and only took the following: 40mm 2.8 (Pancake), 85mm 1.8 and 135mm 2.0L. However, I only ever left the hotel with either the 85 or 135 on the camera (the other stayed in the hotel safe). The 40mm always stayed in my wife's purse for a quick swap when a more "normal" perspective was needed. I like the light weight, simplicity and quality of this type setup . Sure I'm sacrificing versatility, but I can live with that. I'm after a few quality photos rather than large quantity. If I miss a few opportunities by not having an all purpose zoom, I'm okay! I do need to add "something" on the wide end though 24 or 28.....maybe the 16-35. Still, I'd probably rarely leave the hotel with more than 2 lenses.....then the plan for the day (photographically speaking) would be around those 2 lenses. It works for me.

Hey Doug,

Thanks for the great feedback. I am going to try and focus on picking up a couple of prime lenses.

 mcbry111's gear list:mcbry111's gear list
Canon EOS 6D Canon EF 35mm F1.4L USM Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM
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