UWA lens choice

Started 2 months ago | Questions
Jen Kuiper New Member • Posts: 6
UWA lens choice

Tamron 17-30 f2.8-4 or the z mount 14-30 f4?

I have the 17-30, but can return it. I thought the 2.8 would be good for astro at the widest focal length, but I live in the overpopulated mid-atlantic, and I will not be in good 'dark places' very often.

The Z mount is wider, holds aperture throughout, and is lighter. It will probably do the trick for 99% of my uses, but is a twice the cost.

Good enough reasons to switch?

Pondering the under $300 rokinon 14mm F-mount if I really want astro. Not sure I'd go for the almost twice as expensive new z-mount version untested.

J

 Jen Kuiper's gear list:Jen Kuiper's gear list
Panasonic LX10 Nikon D300 Nikon D5600 Nikon Z6 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR II +8 more
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Richard B99 Senior Member • Posts: 2,130
Re: UWA lens choice

Jen Kuiper wrote:

Tamron 17-30 f2.8-4 or the z mount 14-30 f4?

I have the 17-30, but can return it. I thought the 2.8 would be good for astro at the widest focal length, but I live in the overpopulated mid-atlantic, and I will not be in good 'dark places' very often.

The Z mount is wider, holds aperture throughout, and is lighter. It will probably do the trick for 99% of my uses, but is a twice the cost.

Good enough reasons to switch?

Pondering the under $300 rokinon 14mm F-mount if I really want astro. Not sure I'd go for the almost twice as expensive new z-mount version untested.

J

I’ve been thinking along similar lines for an Astro lens. There is also the rokinon 14mm f/2.4 which reviews well for Astro (better than the 2.8 which has a reputation for sample variation).  I quite like the idea of the Laowa 15mm f/2 Zero D.  At the moment only Sony but I thought I saw a rumour that it will soon (July ???) be available for Z.  This one also seems a better size match for travelling with a Z body...

curiousmike1300
curiousmike1300 Contributing Member • Posts: 820
Re: UWA lens choice

I will only comment on the Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 mentioned.

As a very intermittent astro photographer, I started with the 14 f/2.8 and got... mediocre results.  Blame the photographer.

I then purchased the Rokinon 24mm f/1.4, and the results were spectacularly better.

If you have the option to squeeze a little more for the 24 1.4 rokinon, I strongly urge you to consider it instead of the 14 2.8

 curiousmike1300's gear list:curiousmike1300's gear list
Panasonic G85 Nikon Z6 Nikon AF-S Teleconverter TC-17E II Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.8G Nikon 85mm F1.8G +5 more
(unknown member) Veteran Member • Posts: 4,469
Re: UWA lens choice

I just got a good price on the 18-35 and it's better than I expected. Not stunning, but will work for me anyway. If you can get a good price might be an option. I like that it's a fixed length as well.

Jen Kuiper wrote:

Tamron 17-30 f2.8-4 or the z mount 14-30 f4?

I have the 17-30, but can return it. I thought the 2.8 would be good for astro at the widest focal length, but I live in the overpopulated mid-atlantic, and I will not be in good 'dark places' very often.

The Z mount is wider, holds aperture throughout, and is lighter. It will probably do the trick for 99% of my uses, but is a twice the cost.

Good enough reasons to switch?

Pondering the under $300 rokinon 14mm F-mount if I really want astro. Not sure I'd go for the almost twice as expensive new z-mount version untested.

J

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Clayton1985 Veteran Member • Posts: 8,365
Re: UWA lens choice

Jen Kuiper wrote:

Good enough reasons to switch?

14mm vs 17mm..    this is IMO the biggest difference and it's pretty significant - do you need or want the extra mm?  I would be frustrated with 17mm but other people don't use anything even that wide so it really depends on what you need.

beatboxa Senior Member • Posts: 5,790
Re: UWA lens choice

Jen Kuiper wrote:

Tamron 17-30 f2.8-4 or the z mount 14-30 f4?

I have the 17-30, but can return it. I thought the 2.8 would be good for astro at the widest focal length, but I live in the overpopulated mid-atlantic, and I will not be in good 'dark places' very often.

The Z mount is wider, holds aperture throughout, and is lighter. It will probably do the trick for 99% of my uses, but is a twice the cost.

Good enough reasons to switch?

Pondering the under $300 rokinon 14mm F-mount if I really want astro. Not sure I'd go for the almost twice as expensive new z-mount version untested.

J

Can't tell you between the tamron & nikon.  I have the 14-30, but I've never used the Tamron.

Regarding other options, I'd recommend you not get the Rokinon (which I also own).  It's a pretty poor lens wide open.  It's also very hard to focus at night--so eventually, I just took mine apart and manually realigned the focus ring to hard stop at infinity.

Instead, I'd either save up to get a much faster lens or rent one when it's needed.  I personally like the 20mm F/1.8, which is more than twice as fast as a 2.8 lens wide open.  In other words, instead of a 30-second exposure, you could use less than 15-seconds to gather as much light--or get twice as much light at 30-seconds.

Alex Stewart in NL Forum Member • Posts: 57
Re: UWA lens choice

Some people on this site dislike the 14-30 f/4S, but I like it and notice that DXO just gave it a favourable review. (Canadian spelling there, eh.)

As I noted in another thread, it's not a lens that really adds to an image, but then very few lenses do. Also, other factors affect the quality of an image more than a lens, provided the lens doesn't detract from the image. That said, I find that the 50mm f/1.8S is one of those rare lenses that do add a bit of wow, so I expect to buy the 20mm f/1.8S when it is released in a year of so. I used to use the 20mm f/1.8G with adapter, and it's a good lens, but not - at least my copy - a zingingly good one. I'll keep the 14-30mm for situations where I need it. I have found more reasons to use 14mm in my current (long term, photo-ethnographic) project than I would have suspected.

RodneyCampbell Forum Member • Posts: 71
Re: UWA lens choice

I also have the 14-30/4 and really like it (for landscape use for the usual reasons - small, light, can take 100mm filter system (without vignetting even @ 14mm), more than acceptable IQ, etc)

But for astro work - it's not ideal with an f/4 aperture (unless you're using a tracker - which I also plan to do)

I also have the Samyang 14mm f/2.8 (which I've used for many years on my D600/D750) and I love (perhaps I got a really good copy - mine is sharp wide open and very little coma, etc)

With my Z7 I recently bought the newer Samyang 14mm f/2.4 (still an F-mount lens) which is noticeably better in a number of ways

Anyway I did some testing of all three lenses for astro recently and posted my thoughts here:

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4401852

 RodneyCampbell's gear list:RodneyCampbell's gear list
Nikon D750 Nikon Z7 Nikon Z 24-70mm F4 Nikon Z 14-30mm F4
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