Wide vs. Normal Zooms - There can only be one!

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Sn00bies, Aug 19, 2009.

  1. Sn00bies

    Sn00bies TPF Noob!

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    This may seem like a strictly personal dilemma, but I'm looking for opinions to help me decide because I haven't been able to come to a conclusion. :confused:

    I currently own a Sigma 10-20, Nikon 50 1.8, and Nikon 55-200. I had the kit 18-55 that came with my D40X, but I ended up selling it with the body. Now I find myself without what seems to be a primary lens for many.

    I just purchased the 10-20 a month ago, but with the arrival of my new daughter I am beginning to wonder if I should have invested in a good 2.8 normal zoom. I do love to shoot landscape, and love having wide angle, but I wonder if a 17-18mm on the short end of a normal zoom would serve me well for most purposes.

    When I think about selling the sigma, I wonder if having a normal zoom will really be worth losing wide angle, considering the other two lenses I have. Granted the 55-200 isn't of amazing quality, and the 50mm is prime, so I would have a high quality zoom in a shorter lens, but I just can't say for sure what would be the better option. Switching around $500 like I change my underwear (don't worry I change them more often than monthly) isn't something I want to do unless I know it's for good.

    Could anyone share some thoughts on this? I realize to some this may be chump change, but it's a hefty decision for my pocketbook, otherwise I'd have both! Thanks!
     
  2. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    What you have now looks like it covers a pretty good range.

    I personally wouldn't worry about the gap between 20mm & 50mm...

    I shoot Canon, so I don't really know how good thoses lenses are, but the range looks nice.
     
  3. Sn00bies

    Sn00bies TPF Noob!

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    You're all about primes if I remember right...? :p What do you do in the case of photographing a moving object with a prime lens? It seems too difficult to always be running around trying to shoot a picture with a prime when you could just use a zoom. I'm curious of your techniques... or do you break down and use zooms as well? I was under the impression that you only use primes.
     
  4. PhotoXopher

    PhotoXopher TPF Noob!

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    My lens lineup at the moment:

    Nikon 50mm f/1.8
    Nikon 35-70 f/2.8
    Sigma 18-250 f/3.5-6.3

    I really don't find myself looking for more at the moment. With 3 little kids ages 1-6 I have pretty much everything covered with the 35-70 f/2.8 for day to day stuff, the 50mm for the occasional lucky portrait shot and the 18-250 for packing light on trips to the zoo, little league, etc.
     
  5. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    You remember right. ;)

    I only use one zoom - 70-200 f/ 4 L.

    Subject moving around a lot? 3 things you can do-

    1 Predict where the subject will be when you take the shot.

    2 AF - Servo mode will follow the subject.

    3 High shutter speed (flash might be required - depending on the light). Freeze the subject.

    You could also focus manually, but I find AF faster most of the time.

    It sounds like you're more concerned with filling the frame than focusing. Focusing isn't any harder with a prime than it is with a zoom. To get the composition you want, you just have to be in the right place.
     
  6. Bigpopa

    Bigpopa TPF Noob!

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    I run my Tamron 28-75 2.8 most of the time and love it ....I think this would be a good choice for you............
     
  7. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If you do not mind using a DX lens, the focal length range between 17mm to 55mm is pretty good for general type walk around shots.

    Any of those F/2.8 lenses from Tamron, Sigma and Nikon should be pretty decent.

    And my Tamron 17-50mm lens is on my camera most of the time. Of course, I do have 4 fast prime lenses and a telephoto zoom lens.
     
  8. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Sigma 18-50 DC EX HSM F/2.8 macro is my suggestion to you. On my D200, that was the most often lens I used over any of my other ones, and I had a good selection to choose from too.
     
  9. manaheim

    manaheim Jedi Bunnywabbit Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Somewhere in the 18-70 range would be a all purpose workhorse. The wide angle isn't the best lens to be taking baby pictures with as to get the baby in the shot and taking up the frame you will necessarily need to get really close to her/him which would result in bad effects.

    The 50mm will be AMAZING... but eventually the baby will start to move and you'll find you're going to need to run around a lot to get those shots.

    The 10-20 is a great lens, but whether or not you really need it depends very much on your shooting style. I use mine quite a bit, so I would never part with it. But that's me and my style.
     
  10. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Same here.

    I went with a fast zoom from a 3rd party (Tamron) instead of the more expensive Canon version. The Canon version is great, never read up on the Nikon version

    BH has it for $399, with a $10 mail in rebate. Not a bank breaker, great lens. My only issue is that sometimes, the 28mm is not wide enough. I chose to not go wide enough and get the 75mm on the long vs going with a 17-50 and being wide enough but not long enough.

    Tamron | 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) | AF09NII-700

    If you search these forums, there are a bunch of topics on the lens, most with great reviews

    http://www.photozone.de/canon_eos_ff/418-tamron_2875_28_5d
     
  11. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    why not just pick up a 18-55mm non-VR. doesn't really seem like you need this lens in your arsenal except for around the house type shots. no need to drop hundreds on it when the high quality of the 10-20 you currently have seems like it will serve you better.
     
  12. Sn00bies

    Sn00bies TPF Noob!

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    Well that's just it, overall I don't think the 10-20 will serve me better per se. For me it seems to be more of a specialty lens, to fit only a handful of situations. On the other hand, with a normal zoom I can use it in hundreds of different applications. I've made do with my 50mm and 55-200 ever since I got rid of my 18-55 non VR, simply out of necessity, however that's not to say that a new 2.8 normal zoom would be the least used lens in my collection, rather likely on the contrary. My 50mm would probably come out rarely, only with still subjects, and my 55-200 only used on the longest end.

    In a nutshell, I'm a high quality freak when budget allows - and if I trade in the Sigma, the budget will allow. The main issue I have is that all of the "good quality" 2.8 lenses either start at too long a focal length, or end too short. For instance, Tamron's 28-75, which I'm sure is a great lens, would be even better (for my preferences anyway) if it were 18-75, much like their 17-50 would entice me more if it were 17-80. Is there any recommended choice among good 2.8 lenses that is in the 17,18-80ish range? I think I would feel much more comfortable giving up the Sigma, knowing that I'd at least have a 17-18mm range with which I could get some sort of wide angle shots, even if I had to stitch two together.
     

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