Lens dilemma: Multiple Primes vs Standard zoom

Started May 6, 2013 | Discussions thread
happysnapper64 Veteran Member • Posts: 5,417
Re: Lens dilemma: Multiple Primes vs Standard zoom

Doug_PS wrote:

I'm at a bit of a cross-road with my lens collection and can go into a couple of different directions. Hoping for a bit of advice from those that have had the same choices:

Last December I moved from a crop (50D) to full frame (5DMKII). I've sold my EF-S lenses (15-85 and 60mm Macro) to help fund lenses for the 5D. My dilemma is whether to go with a zoom for the standard range or primes. Here are the lenses I have currently:

  • EF200 f/2.8L
  • EF135 f/2.0L (keeping regardless of the option I choose below)
  • EF85 f/1.8

So, you can see my "normal" range is completely open. I can go in any direction. I also recently bought a 40mm pancake for $149 as a stop-gap for a normal lens (can easily sell without taking much of a hit).

I primarily use my lenses for travel and for portraits and indoor shots when at home. No kids or other fast moving objects to speak of that I typially shoot (ie with a camera !). I'm also addicted to shallow depth of field.

I just rented the following two lenses as a serious option to complete the normal range:

  • Sigma 34 f1/.4
  • Canon EF 24 f/2.8 IS

I'm very impressed with both of these lenses. The Sigma is a phenomenal lens and the 24 2.8 IS is very good and very light. I'm seriously considering pulling the trigger on this combo. If I do, the 24, 35, 85 combo could cover the "normalish" range.

The other option is to sell the 85 1.8 and get the Canon EF 24-70 MKII and use it as a single lens option for this range. I'd possibly sell the 200 f/2.8 too (used too infrequently)

The cost of both options is roughly equal. Which way to go?

Hi Doug. I am not experienced enough to offer any specific advice on which lenses, but I would say it depends on where you take most of your shots, & what your style is, as opposed to what you photograph. If you take a lot of pictures outdoors in windy conditions or on/near a beach, I would want to avoid changing lenses too often, & would opt for a top quality zoom to cover the range, possibly a 70-200f/2.8 non IS, which is almost prime like through the whole range. I was considering the 200f/2.8 last year, but went with the 70-200f/4 IS & never regretted it.Only you know which focal lengths you will use most. I have never had a FF, but it could be a bit tricky coming from APS-c to fathom the new FL's required. I think you are sold on the Sigma so even though the 24-70 covers the Sigmas 34mm range, the f/1.4 could be of value to you for indoors. Do you have a good flash unit? I would suggest you look in your galleries & see which FL's you use the most & put you best lenses in that figure. Just a relative beginners opinion FWIW. Hope it helps.

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lee uk.
There are old pilots, & there are bold pilots, but there are no old bold pilots.

 happysnapper64's gear list:happysnapper64's gear list
Canon EOS 5D Mark II Canon EOS 7D Sigma 150mm F2.8 EX DG OS Macro HSM Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM +6 more
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