Telephoto Dilemma: Balancing Portability, Speed, Cost, and Focal Length

Started Jul 27, 2014 | Discussions thread
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gh68393 New Member • Posts: 5
Telephoto Dilemma: Balancing Portability, Speed, Cost, and Focal Length

Hey all!

After months of agonizing over bodies and lenses, I finally made the jump from the crop body Canon 7D to a Nikon D610. So far, I really love the D610 and have found the Nikon controls a fairly smooth adjustment, and my goodness, it is so lovely to finally have a FF sensor in low light!

With my 7D, I was primarily shooting with a 24-70 f/2.8 and occasionally a 70-200 f/2.8. I tend to shoot on the ends of my zooms - most of my favorite images (whether they are travel, wedding, watersport, or family photos) were shot at 24mm, 70mm, and 150-200mm (roughly 35, 112, and 300ish on FX), with 50mm (~85 FX equivalent) as a close third to the focal lengths above.

I picked up a Sigma 35 f/1.4 as my first lens for my D610 and so far, I absolutely love it. I think it's a great step forward and replacement for the wide end of my old zoom.

Finding a replacement (or replacements) for my portrait/sports needs is where I'm struggling. A 24-70 on a full frame will not give me the reach that I love with my 24-70 on the crop body.

For the focal lengths I most frequently shoot, the 70-200 is really the best compliment to the 35 prime on a full frame camera. However, I'm afraid the immense weight of the 70-200 f/2.8 will discourage me from using it as a walkaround lens like I treated my 24-70 on the crop body. I find the 70-200 f/4 really appealing due to its weight, but I worry that I will miss the speed and bokeh for portraits, weddings, and watersports.

Given all these factors, I'm now looking at the 85 1.8 and 105 2.8 as alternatives to my big zoom. Admittedly, they won't have the reach for sports or even some wedding ceremonies, but they may handle my portrait, event, and walkaround needs even more than a 70-200 on FX.

I realize that I may ultimately need three or even four lenses to satisfy all my needs (35, 85 or 105, and a 70-200, for example), but with the cost of the 70-200 f/2.8, I am hesitant to buy it as a third lens for now.

Has anyone else faced similar dilemmas in their switch to full frame (and to a mix of zooms and primes)? Would a 85 or 105 plus the 70-200 f/4 be an option to consider if the 70-200 is predominantly geared towards ceremonies (mix of outside and dimly lit churches) and outdoor, well lit sports? Does anyone use the 70-200 f/2.8 as one of you primary walkaround lenses? I would love to hear your thoughts!

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