November 23, 2014, 05:32:26 PM

Author Topic: Should I replace my zooms with primes?  (Read 3114 times)

pulseimages

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Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« on: August 01, 2013, 03:21:56 AM »
When I was showing my vintage automobile images to a gallery owner he remarked that my images would look even better bigger and with a prime lens.

Now I know that primes are largely sharper than zooms. So should I switch from zooms to primes or buy certain primes to compliment my zooms?

The lenses I currently have are:

Canon EF-S 10-22
Canon EF 17-40 L
Canon EF 28-80 L
Canon EF 100 2.8 Macro
Canon EF 70-200 2.8 L.

I will be replacing the 28-80 L with the 24-105 L when I get the 6D body + lens kit.

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Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« on: August 01, 2013, 03:21:56 AM »

Grumbaki

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2013, 05:17:52 AM »
I have 24-200 in 2 zooms (waiting on the UWA unicorn) but got the Sigma 35 and 85L but this was mainly for low light and DOF, not sharpness, even tho they are indeed damn sharp.

Looking at your kit i'd say dump the grandma (28-80) for a young hottie (24-70L II). More seriously, right now it's as sharp or very close to primes.

Schruminator

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2013, 06:15:08 AM »
I'm not sure if it is paired with the 6D for a kit, but I'd look at the 24-70 f/4 IS instead of the 24-105. The 24-105 is a great focal range, but I never found it to be that sharp compared to my other L's and I wasn't a fan of the distortion at the wide end (although that is pretty easy to correct in post). The 24-70 f/4 is supposed to be much sharper, still has an f/4 aperture (if that fits your needs) and still has IS. on top of that, your 70-200 will cover the longer focal lengths. Personally I ditched the 24-105 for the 24-70 2.8 II, and while I sometimes miss the IS, I love the noticeable gain in sharpness (even if my wallet got a lot lighter).

With regards to zooms and primes:
Primes will be sharper than zooms at the same focal length most every time (although at smaller apertures, most zooms will sharpen up pretty good). The main reason I like primes is the wider aperture-- which is great for bokeh and thin DoF-- but I really love the fact that I can shoot in low light without cranking my ISO through the roof.

If you're always finding yourself shooting at f/4-f/8, then primes won't gain you a whole lot. They're physically lighter, but if you can't find a use for their low-light capabilities or take advantage of the wide aperture to throw the background out of focus, you might as well stick with your zooms for the flexibility.
5D III | 14 2.8 L | 24 1.4 II L | 35 1.4 L | 50 1.2 L | 85 1.2 II L | 24-70 2.8 II L | 70-200 2.8 IS II L | 40 2.8 | 1.4x Mk. II T.C. | M Schrum Photography

verysimplejason

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2013, 06:36:04 AM »
Zooms have their own uses.  It will entirely depend on what type of photography you are doing.  For events, flexibility is a must.  6D + 24-105L would be a very good combo.  I'd say a little bit better combo than the 6D + 24-70L F4 due to range.  Not so sharp but for people, sharpness requirements isn't that great.  If you're going to sell your APS-C, then sell also all APS-C lenses.  You can get the 50mm F1.4 or 40mm F2.8 if you want to travel light.  The rest, I'll keep if I were you.

Just a thought, why not sell your APS-C body, 10-22mm and 28-80L then add everything to so you can upgrade your 6D kit to 6D + 24-70 F2.8L (mark I or mark II)? You can get your little primes later.  :)  If it's alright with you to go for 3rd party lenses, then you can also consider the Tamron 24-70 VC.  I think a lot of canonites here are quite satisfied with the lens.  You can quietly add the 50mm F1.4 or 40mm F2.8 later. 

tron

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2013, 07:21:29 AM »
Your lenses are very good to be concerned with supplementing and/or replacing them.
Take a few more pictures (at around f/8 or f/11)  print them big and show them to this ... gallery owner telling him you got a new prime lens.

I bet he will believe it  ;D

LewisShermer

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2013, 07:57:41 AM »
The only advantage on having primes would be the shallow DoF. I'm assuming that you'd be shooting f8 and over as you want the car to be sharp all over? then there's no point. I'd tell this guy he doesn't know what he's talking about! the only thing i'd get is a 100mm Macro for close up details...
5Diii, 1Dsiii, 60D, 500D, EX580, loads of crappy flash guns... 28mm 1.8, Sigma 35mm 1.4 Art, 50mm 1.4, 100mm macro 2.8, 24-105mm 4L, 70-200mm 2.8L, lensbaby composer...

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LewisShermer

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2013, 07:58:46 AM »
The only advantage on having primes would be the shallow DoF. I'm assuming that you'd be shooting f8 and over as you want the car to be sharp all over? then there's no point. I'd tell this guy he doesn't know what he's talking about! the only thing i'd get is a 100mm Macro for close up details...

just read your lens list properly... you have the 100mm macro. just get on with what your doing
5Diii, 1Dsiii, 60D, 500D, EX580, loads of crappy flash guns... 28mm 1.8, Sigma 35mm 1.4 Art, 50mm 1.4, 100mm macro 2.8, 24-105mm 4L, 70-200mm 2.8L, lensbaby composer...

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2013, 07:58:46 AM »

Marsu42

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2013, 08:02:07 AM »
I will be replacing the 28-80 L with the 24-105 L when I get the 6D body + lens kit.

That contradicts what you've said before - if you *really* maxed out the sharpness of your lenses and am not just told so, get a 24-70 mk2 which has prime sharpness but has a slight onion bokeh & lacks the max. large open aperture of fast primes.

Sine you have one prime you should also know if zooming with your feet is something that suits you or if you want/need zooms for flexibility or convenience, a uber-sharp shot on a prime isn't helping if it only fills 2/3 of the frame.

Please post the shot(s) that was criticized in full res & full exif somewhere & we can have a look where/if spending a lot of $$$ would really make a difference in image quality.

PavelR

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2013, 08:19:47 AM »
I recommend to add: 135/2 or 100/2 and 24-70 II and 70-200 II to maximize the IQ improvement (in the given order).
Cars does have pretty contrasty (glossy to dark) shapes where old zooms and wide primes need to be pretty stopped down to deliver not blurred images across the frame...

The Bad Duck

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #9 on: August 01, 2013, 08:39:57 AM »
Your lenses are very good to be concerned with supplementing and/or replacing them.
Take a few more pictures (at around f/8 or f/11)  print them big and show them to this ... gallery owner telling him you got a new prime lens.

I bet he will believe it  ;D

+1
Stopped down a bit, as I suspect you do when photographing cars, your lenses should be fine. Aim for f/8 or f/11 as that is where most lenses perform their best (have not looked your lenses up though). Rather add a tripod if the cars are standing still.

Good luck.

Northstar

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2013, 09:55:22 AM »
You have a very sharp prime already, the 100 2.8.

If you want to try another prime without spending a lot of money, then go buy a 40mm 2.8 for $150...it produces wonderful images that are quite sharp across the frame...then reevaluate your needs/ results after trying out the 40mm for a while.



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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2013, 10:04:21 AM »
Not for sharpness, but for bokeh... YES.

pulseimages

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2013, 10:36:16 PM »
Zooms have their own uses.  It will entirely depend on what type of photography you are doing.  For events, flexibility is a must.  6D + 24-105L would be a very good combo.  I'd say a little bit better combo than the 6D + 24-70L F4 due to range.  Not so sharp but for people, sharpness requirements isn't that great.  If you're going to sell your APS-C, then sell also all APS-C lenses.  You can get the 50mm F1.4 or 40mm F2.8 if you want to travel light.  The rest, I'll keep if I were you.

Just a thought, why not sell your APS-C body, 10-22mm and 28-80L then add everything to so you can upgrade your 6D kit to 6D + 24-70 F2.8L (mark I or mark II)? You can get your little primes later.  :)  If it's alright with you to go for 3rd party lenses, then you can also consider the Tamron 24-70 VC.  I think a lot of canonites here are quite satisfied with the lens.  You can quietly add the 50mm F1.4 or 40mm F2.8 later.

I have two Canon 40D's. I was thinking of selling one and using the other as a back up or should I sell both of them?

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2013, 10:36:16 PM »

Etienne

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2013, 12:38:44 AM »
How about this option:

Sell everything you have and buy:
6D,
24 2.8 IS USM
35 f/2 IS USM
100 2.8L IS USM macro
Sigma 15mm 2.8 fisheye

scottkinfw

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2013, 01:33:43 AM »
I would not disagree with what has been posted.  I would augment with this.

Be sure that your system is fully calibrated to obtain best results.  Decide which system system you will use to do it if you can adjust AFMA.

I Got the 24-105 with my 5DIII kit and found it to be an awesome lens.  I was however swayed to buy the 24-40 2.8 II based on reviews and must say it does have the edge on IQ and it is faster.  Either lens however is awesome and has benefits.

Not wanting to waste your money, and knowing nothing about your current camera, and little to nothing about the 6D, my advice to you would be that if you are intent on getting the 6D anyway, get it, calibrate your lenses, optimize your technique with the new gear, then decide if you want to upgrade your lenses.  You may decide that the new camera alone may be all that is needed to meet your needs.

sek
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Plus lots of stuff that just didn't work for me

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Re: Should I replace my zooms with primes?
« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2013, 01:33:43 AM »