Travel Lens Kit Philosophy

Started Sep 9, 2013 | Discussions thread
RBFresno Forum Pro • Posts: 12,566
Re: Travel Lens Kit Philosophy

Jeff Klofft wrote:

RBFresno wrote:

Jeff Klofft wrote:

Whenever I travel with my camera and want to take a smaller DSLR kit, I seem to always face the dilemma: do I take something simple like a superzoom (and maybe a small wide lens or wide-zoom) or something like a wide-zoom paired with a tele-zoom (and maybe a small 50). With the former I give up some quality for convenience and few lens changes but at the cost of image quality. With the other set, it’s just the opposite.

Now I know that sometimes the destination makes this choice obvious, but all things being equal, I’d be curious to know what everyone else does. Thanks.

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Hi Jeff!

I tend to error on the side of taking the most equipment I can for the occasion without slowing me down, and usually err on the side of what is going to give me the best images.

I am a bit equipment-limited for having light travel options, in that I tend to have a few high IQ lenses (is 6 or 7 lenses " a few"?), and if I want to travel light, it means primes rather than a slower zoom which I don't own.

For instance, I have a 24-70, but not a lighter 24-85.

And I don't have any FX zooms over 3x, such as the 24-120VR, or 38-300VR or even the 80-400VR (less than half the weight of the 200-400VR that I have heavily used!).

Maybe as I get older and my eyes are less critical, my back weaker, and a few less marbles rolling around in my head, I might buy a few wider range zooms. I can see where it might be nice traveling with a 24-120 and 80-400. Right now, I'm a sucker for high IQ lenses.

Some folks are happy with their iPhones. Others will look at the output from their 500VR and curse the fact that they don't have a 600VR.


Hey RB,

Long time. My "few" is a approaching 13 :-0! Like you I have the 2.8 zooms, but I've been adding the f/4 zooms over time and find them to be an nice addition. I sold my 200-400, to fund my f/1.4 collection and am happy with that decision. I do miss having something out to 400 and am thinking about the new 80-400. I rented one and really liked it.

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HI Again!

I also sold my 200-400VR, but perhaps for reasons different from your! I found that once I had switched to FX, I was almost always using the 200-400VR at 400mm and frequently wanting more reach. I wasn't happy with the IQ using the 1.4TC for distant subjects (though for closer subjects, the TC results seemed better). So I got the 500VR. After a year of realizing thatI was using either the 200VR or 500VR, and that I hadn't touched the 200-400VR, I sold the latter.

I also sold my 70-200VR (I). I had accumulated some very good primes in that focal range (85 1.4 AF-D, Zeiss 100/2, Zeiss 135/, 200VR) and for my particular uses I didn't need a zoom. Plus, I I thought that if I ever began to miss having a zoom, I'd prefer the more recent 70-200 VR II as the focus breathing would not be a problem for me, and it is better suited for FX sensors.

BTW, I still have my 28 1.4 AF-D. Can't really bear to part with it. And it is one of the lenses that I like to "walk around" with at night:

Nikon D4 ,Nikkor 28mm f/1.4D AF
1/25s f/3.2 at 28.0mm iso3200

Best Regards,


 RBFresno's gear list:RBFresno's gear list
Nikon D2H Nikon D4 Nikon AF DX Fisheye-Nikkor 10.5mm f/2.8G ED Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G ED-IF Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED VR +14 more
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