Talk Me Out of My Paris-Barcelona Lens Choices

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LensSodomist Regular Member • Posts: 362
Talk Me Out of My Paris-Barcelona Lens Choices

Bring The Least Gear

I want to take the least amount of photography gear to Europe as I can, without feeling like I will be missing out on the type of shots I want. This is not my first European vacation, so Europe is not new to me. I believe that sometimes, less is more. Does this apply here?

Inventory of Choices

Here are the Candidate lenses that I have:

  1. Canon RF 24-105L f4 IS
  2. Canon RF 28-70L f2
  3. Canon EF 8-15L F4
  4. Canon RF 50L f1.2
  5. Canon EF 100L f2.8 IS
  6. Canon RF 35L f1.8 IS
  7. Canon EF 70-200L f2.8 IS III
  8. Canon EF 100-400L f4 IS II


I have already decided to bring 1 EOS R body + Battery Grip, and 1 Canon 600EX-RT + filters for matching light temperature indoors (incandescent and flourescent), mounted off-camera on an L frame (when shooting portraits). I will bring a Thinktank Sling.  Bringing Peak Design quick attach/detach camera sling strap.

Types of Photography

Here are the types of shots I want to take:

  1. Environmental Portraits during days & nights, inside & outside, 1-4 people.
  2. Street Photography, candids, Cafe Society compositions
  3. Monuments
  4. Museums that prohibit flash
  5. Cathedrals
  6. Cityscapes, Architectural
  7. Hiking outside of Barcelona (Montserrat)
  8. Foodie, Drinks, Restaurant Decor.
  9. Still Lifes
  10. Few Macro
  11. Scenery/Gardens/Parks
  12. I plan on shooting some video shorts, but stills are my emphasis.

Choice #1

  1. Canon RF 24-105L f4
  2. Canon EF 8-15L f4
  3. Canon RF 35L f1.8 IS

Pros: The 24-105L is the consummate travel lens, a jack of all trades, a good walk-about lens. This Zoom provides more reach, zoom provides IS, and great when decent ambient light is available. Fish-eye for Cathedrals and other interiors, f1.8 for subject isolation portraits, and for dark interiors.

Cons: 3 lenses, more swapping, f4 too slow at times, the weight of 3 lenses, storage is bulky in sling bag. The f2 zoom is sharper, providing better image quality at all f-stops. F4 feels too limiting, not the best for subject isolation during portraits.

Choice #2

  1. Canon RF 28-70L f2
  2. Canon EF 8-15L f4

Pros: Just 2 lenses, faster f2 on zoom, less weight but not by much, f2 zoom is an "infinite" number of fast primes 28mm through 70mm, so no need for fast wide angle prime. F2 provides more options for bokeh, more subject separation during portraits, pulls in more light in dark interiors and at night. More free space in sling bag. Less lens swapping. Fish-eye for some interiors. F2 does not require higher ISO's to speed up the shutter.

Cons: This f2 zoom provides less reach. Zoom choice is a lot heavier than the other choice. No IS on zoom. F2 zoom less likely to blend in with surroundings (too in your face, too obvious). IS zoom better for video. F2 is slower than f1.2 and f1.8 on the primes I could bring.

The Other Lenses

The other lenses are out, as they are too big and/or too heavy, and I do not think they would support the types of photography I plan on shooting.

I am leaning hard toward Choice #2.

Constructive thoughts?

Should I buy another lens and if so, which?

What other pros and cons did I miss?

 LensSodomist's gear list:LensSodomist's gear list
Canon EOS R Canon EF 100mm F2.8L Macro IS USM Canon EF 70-200mm F2.8L IS II USM Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM Canon Extender EF 2x III +7 more
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