Prime or zoom

Started 5 months ago | Discussions thread
Tommi K1 Senior Member • Posts: 5,685
Re: Prime or zoom

Jimmyy wrote:

Then can you help me answer the question : is the 12-35mm worth the almost 900$? knowing that one could get two different primes for this 15mm and 20mm and I already have the 42.5mm.

I'm not a professional, so I'm not going to do story telling, I'm just trying to capture my kids, in a wider shot rather than in an very narrow one as the 42.5mm for indoor (in our house) recording.

I would choose the zoom because its flexibility. With video you can anyways go to higher ISO values as it doesn't show up same way as with photographs as each video frame has different noise pattern. So f/2.8 vs f/1.7 is 1.5 EV in aperture (exposure can be little different) but when your subjects are more of the family scenes that you don't want to spoil by telling someone being somewhere or spend times to swap lenses, and carry multiple lenses with you (even when they are in next room) the primes gets quickly obstacle. If you would be doing a production where you have the time, then lens swapping wouldn't be such a problem.

Like think about a birthday situation, you can quickly do with a zoom that you use a wide angle for one angle, just quickly zoom in while you move to little different angle. And then you can in video editor cut off the part here you change your position and you zoom in/out so you get nicer looking video here you change not just angle but as well the framing to tight or wide. It adds dynamic to the video and it ain't looking like someone just shot all with same focal length. The key thing is to vary the framing and focal length and there zoom just has the big benefit.

In productions these are done with multiple cameras. So you get one constant timeline, multiple angles, multiple framings and then you just choose different parts to make a one long boring moment to look more intense.

IMHO:  if I would choose a lens for family videos etc. I would look nothing else these days than Olympus 12-100mm f/4. Because it just has the 8.33x zoom range, manual focus clutch so you can avoid all autofocus problems and concentrate better for framing.

But that lens is bigger and heavier than 12-35mm f/2.8 so you risk then easily to leave the camera to car or somewhere else.

So I would take definitely a zoom over primes as zoom is worth its money, because you save time and you get more moments captured and that is the point in family history recording.

If you work outdoors or in daytime more often, even lenses like 14-140mm f/3.5-5.6 can work very well.

So sorry to add some more choices and ideas, but to make things easier, skip the idea of set of primes.

Do your own testing in typical situations and set your current lenses to f/4 or f/5.6 and check what shutter speed you can get and what ISO and does a f/4 or f/5.6 lens work for you.

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