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Author Topic: advice re lenses for travel photography  (Read 4872 times)

ejas0973

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advice re lenses for travel photography
« on: April 02, 2012, 12:06:26 PM »
I currently work on cruise ships so this sees me in all parts of the world. I have a canon 60d with the kit 28-135 lens on it and am looking to upgrade/ progress into the world of better lenses.
My shooting focuses on landscape, architecture, usual travel shots, mostly day but occasional night. In the future I will also shoot some car shows.
Right now I am happy with camera and will keep it for at least a few years as I grow to learn more about the art before progressing to full frame
My thoughts were
10-22 f3.5-4.5
24-105 f4l is usm
100-300L
A prime lens for some night time architecture and video day/night
? 50 1.4L
Would really love some guidance if you think these lenses are the way to go or other suggestions, especially from any pro travel photographers.
I don't have an endless budget but can justify a reasonable expenditure if the result is worth it in terms of quality of the lens.

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advice re lenses for travel photography
« on: April 02, 2012, 12:06:26 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2012, 12:13:27 PM »
IMO, the best general purpose lens for an APS-C camera like the 60D is the EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS, followed by the EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS.  The latter is slower but has a broader range, so it's most useful for outdoor shooting; the 17-55mm offers a faster aperture making it useful indoors and for portraits.

Depending on budget, a very nice lens kit for APS-C would be:

EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5
EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS
EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS
plus a prime lens, perhaps Sigma 30mm f/1.4 or Canon 50mm f/1.4
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
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zhap03

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2012, 01:37:35 PM »
My travel kit consists of a t3i, 15-85mm, and a 50mm 1.4.  I like the compact and light weight 15-85mm for travelling.  It's great for outdoor photography where light is usually plentiful.  If I'm indoors, and flash is permitted then the use of the t3i's flash is convenient with the 15-85mm.  If flash is not permitted, I'll swap the 15-85mm out and put the 50mm 1.4 on and shoot with ambient light.  My travel kit has to be compact and light.  I think the 3 pieces of equipment that I just listed meet those two criterias.

I'll also pack an S100 in case a situation arises where it's not sensible to bring along my t3i.  I've recently added a Fuji x100 and a Fuji X-Pro 1 with a 35mm 1.4 lens to my collection.  I have a few trips coming up (NY and Montreal F1 Race) where I plan to test both Fuji's abilities to serve as a travel kit. 

Although I also own a 1Ds3 and a 5d3, for me, it's about compactness and light weight for travel.  Just one opinion though... I hope this helps.

loudpictures

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2012, 01:42:00 PM »
for APS-C I like the combination:
10-22
50 1,4 or 1,8
100 2,8 macro

This is pretty compact, does not draw too much attention and is versatile enough. Add a Manfrotto 709B, and everything fits nicely in a Think Tank Retrospective 5 or 10.



bluegreenturtle

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2012, 02:20:04 PM »
How did you get into the gig?  My wife occasionally works on Crystal and I've always wanted to get into the video side for a line like them. 

ejas0973

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2012, 09:54:34 PM »
thank you for the feedback I am definitely seeing a common theme of where I should head.
I am thinking of picking up a g1x to use as a back up and for scuba diving (loved my g10), I already have a nikon aw11 for snorkelling, rafting etc and the sweep panorama mode, but otherwise disapointed with it.
I work as a nurse onboard and came from a busy intensive care in NZ and needed a change. I had a friend keep sending me pictures of carribean islands and places in Europe and so thought that it would be a little less stressfull. Photography onboard is mostly about portraits and mass selling of 'memories' rather than pictures of the destinations. Working cruise ships is summed up as: twice as long hours as on land, half the pay as on land but then how many people get paid to cruise down the main canal of venice every second week. The best way to apply for these sort of jobs is to take a cruise, talk to a person in the dept about what they do day in day out and if still interested get a contact email of a person directly in there office. Cheers

katwil

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2012, 11:05:21 PM »
I would agree with the earlier post mentioning the 15-85.  The 17-55 is a better lens for low lighting, but the extra range of the 15-85 comes in handy when there’s not a lot of time to switch lenses.  For low lighting, the EF 50 f/1.4 is a solid lens, and is probably more suited for portraits on a crop body (I’m not a portrait guy, so follow this piece of advice with caution).  I’m pretty sure the 100-300L is discontinued, but the 70-300L is a good choice if you need something that long.  I took the 24-105L with my T3i on a recent trip to Egypt.  That was a big mistake as it was not wide enough for wide-angle shots.  That lens is really much more useful on FF cameras.

Regarding your comment about the G1X, I too have been looking at that camera.  I’m holding off on that one at the moment as the price point is at its pinnacle right now, at least here in the states.  In fact, I think one can get both the G12 and the EF 50 f/1.4 for the same price as the G1X.  I know there’s a big jump in technology from the G12 to the G1X, but the price difference is also significant.

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2012, 11:05:21 PM »

Cali_PH

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2012, 11:18:42 PM »
I think you'd enjoy the 10-22mm.  I mostly do travel/landscape (hobbyist, not a pro though  ;)), and my 10-22mm is my most-used lens.  Not only is it useful for nice wide landscapes, but I was also just showing someone yesterday some of my shots from cramped quarters, such as lower Antelope Canyon and some indoor shots.  It allowed me to get some shots I wouldn't otherwise be able to do (similar to a FF camera and a lens in the 16mm range, of course).  Perhaps that could be useful on a cruise ship too, since I imagine some areas are a bit tight.


pj1974

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2012, 12:41:35 AM »
My advice would be to go with the Canon 15-85mm as your travel lens. It is so versatile, such a good focal range - and the IS and USM focus are amazing.  I went the 15-85mm over the 17-55mm as the wider and more tele ends were important to me.

Also, when I want 'fast glasss' I go for primes. Most of my photography is outdoor (landscape, wildlife, macro and odd other pieces) I don't do much sports at all (apart from the occasional motorsports) - so I don't require a fast telezoom lens.

As neuro pointed out in his typically 'spot on' advice, having an ultrawide zoom, a 'good kit zoom' and a quality telezoom, plus a prime - makes a great travel package.

I will often take my Sigma 10-20mm, Canon 15-85mm, Canon 100mm f2.8 macro and Canon 70-300mm L as my 'four lens' kit.  At times I'll take fewer lenses (eg 'just' 15-85mm and 70-300mm L, or 10-20mm and 15-85mm - depending on the types of photos I'll be taking).

If I just take 1 lens, it is nearly always the 15-85mm.  The 17-55mm definitely is enjoyed by many others too, perhaps those that take more low light photos without a tripod (eg indoor portraits).

You listed the 100-300mmL as an option. While it has decent image quality, it's an old lens (without IS). I'd recommend the 70-300mm non L (which has quite ok image quality) above the 100-300mm L.

Best wishes.

Paul
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D.Sim

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2012, 01:26:04 AM »
A prime lens for some night time architecture and video day/night

Unless you're talking about a TS+E lens, why would you go for prime? Night time architecture will be easily covered with the other lenses, you don't need a fast prime for that....

ejas0973

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2012, 05:48:43 PM »
ok commitment is made
10-22, 17-85, 70-300l and 50 1.4
want to think of it as an investment rather than a lot of cash
now time to think about tripods hmm
thanks for your help

NAshby

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2012, 11:18:50 AM »
I used to work on Cruise ships as well not to long ago, although it's unlikely at the moment since Caribbean season is over if your in St.Maarten grab your gear from there since you will save a decent amount of cash. The 17-85 is one of my favorite lens's for daily use so good choice there.

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mdm041

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2012, 11:12:25 AM »
Go wide...10-22 will serve you well.
5D III, 7D, 16-35 F2.8L, 24-70 F2.8L, 50 F1.4
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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2012, 11:12:25 AM »

pj1974

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2012, 07:00:55 PM »
ok commitment is made
10-22, 17-85, 70-300l and 50 1.4
want to think of it as an investment rather than a lot of cash
now time to think about tripods hmm
thanks for your help

ejas0973, are you SURE you want to get the 17-85mm...  (or did you make a typo, meaning the 17-55mm or the 15-85mm?)  The 17-85mm is an older lens, and the image quality on the wide end is noticeably soft and has strong CA.

The 17-85mm is not nearly as good a lens as the either the 15-85mm or 17-55mm f2.8   As per my post above, depends on what you're looking for - but I use the 15-85m as my 'go to lens' for most every day photos. It's matched very well on my 7D.

Regards

Paul
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solarpos

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2012, 08:35:30 PM »
ef-s 60 macro, great travel lens for amazing things small and close while abroad and for portrait. Sharper lenses are hard to find.

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Re: advice re lenses for travel photography
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2012, 08:35:30 PM »