September 17, 2014, 12:03:30 AM

Poll

Primes VS zooms

Primes
58 (69.9%)
Zooms
25 (30.1%)

Total Members Voted: 83

Voting closed: April 18, 2012, 10:43:47 AM

Author Topic: Prime VS Zooms.  (Read 11324 times)

sawsedge

  • Rebel SL1
  • ***
  • Posts: 97
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #30 on: April 05, 2012, 03:17:59 PM »
The definitive answer:  It depends!

If you need a shallow DOF or are shooting in low light, a fast prime is the way to go.  If your subjects will be moving, a zoom may be the best solution.

Budget and style of shooting are also important factors.  In the end, the "right tool for the job" depends on you.

+1

I could not vote, I use both.  It is always a matter of the best tool for the job.   I have an equal number of each.

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #30 on: April 05, 2012, 03:17:59 PM »

neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ********
  • Posts: 14381
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #31 on: April 05, 2012, 03:18:58 PM »
I could not vote, I use both.

Pity this isn't like a real election, where you can vote more than once...   :P
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

FarQinell

  • Guest
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #32 on: April 05, 2012, 04:00:02 PM »
A Canon prime will always beat a zoom!

Seriously though you can often get two sharp primes for less than the corresponding zoom eg an 85/2 and an 200/2.8 instead of the cumbersome 70-200 f2.8 which handles like a brick!

Depends on what you do.  Tracking moving objects is easier with the 70-200 II f/2.8 than with the L primes in the same range.

Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.
By comparison the other two are lightweight and well balanced.
If anybody wants a 70-200 then go for the f4 which is very sharp wide open unlike the f2.8 - very light and light on the pocket as well!

briansquibb

  • Guest
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #33 on: April 05, 2012, 04:06:29 PM »
Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.

The 70-200 f/2.8 II + 1D4 are well balanced

FarQinell

  • Guest
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #34 on: April 05, 2012, 04:47:21 PM »
Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.

The 70-200 f/2.8 II + 1D4 are well balanced

That's a heavy combination to carry around?
Better balance with a heavier body -  I agree.
Poor balance with APS-C body.

briansquibb

  • Guest
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #35 on: April 05, 2012, 05:09:41 PM »
Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.

The 70-200 f/2.8 II + 1D4 are well balanced

That's a heavy combination to carry around?
Better balance with a heavier body -  I agree.
Poor balance with APS-C body.

This is my default setup and hold them all day - dont even use a strap as the hand holds spread the weight well

JR

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1244
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #36 on: April 05, 2012, 07:53:34 PM »
Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.

The 70-200 f/2.8 II + 1D4 are well balanced

That's a heavy combination to carry around?
Better balance with a heavier body -  I agree.
Poor balance with APS-C body.

This is my default setup and hold them all day - dont even use a strap as the hand holds spread the weight well

Still, I would not call that walking around material for me for sure!  You must be a strong man  ;) Brian...

Seriously, I have always found the 70-200 2.8 on the heavy side but I must admit that I am getting use to it now and the wait is bothering me less and less.  I would hold it for the whole day, but dont mind using it with a flash for a while...

1DX, 24mm f1.4L II, 35mm f1.4L, 50mm f1.2L, 85mm f1.2L II, 135mm f2L, 24-70mm f2.8L II, 70-200mm f2.8L IS II :  D800, D4, and a whole bunch of Nikon lenses

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #36 on: April 05, 2012, 07:53:34 PM »

Random Orbits

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1343
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #37 on: April 05, 2012, 09:09:18 PM »
A Canon prime will always beat a zoom!

Seriously though you can often get two sharp primes for less than the corresponding zoom eg an 85/2 and an 200/2.8 instead of the cumbersome 70-200 f2.8 which handles like a brick!

Depends on what you do.  Tracking moving objects is easier with the 70-200 II f/2.8 than with the L primes in the same range.

Sorry but have to disagree.
The 70-200 f2.8 is heavy - front heavy.
By comparison the other two are lightweight and well balanced.
If anybody wants a 70-200 then go for the f4 which is very sharp wide open unlike the f2.8 - very light and light on the pocket as well!

So you're saying that the 85 and 200 primes can track moving objects as well as the 70-200?  I don't recall commenting on weight at all.

dunkers

  • Canon AE-1
  • ***
  • Posts: 76
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #38 on: April 05, 2012, 10:40:06 PM »
If I had a preference, I would use primes. I just love moving about to take my shot rather than standing still and twisting my wrist.


It really depends on what I'm shooting. My 70-200 f2.8 IS II is for sports. My 100L is for headshots, portraits, etc.
5D3 | 60D | 100L IS | 70-200L II IS | 24-105L

FunPhotons

  • 7D
  • *****
  • Posts: 405
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #39 on: April 06, 2012, 06:34:34 AM »
I'd prefer primes but for the following reasons ...

  • Canon puts most of their R&D into zooms
  • Primes require more lens changes and hassle

I've been using zooms long enough now (converted over seven years ago) that I'm pretty much used to them and OK. Bigger, heavier, but they do have more flexibility.

Given that, I do have a fantasy of having a all Zeiss prime kit.

zim

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 710
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #40 on: April 06, 2012, 06:47:56 AM »
Back when I started photography it was a no-brainer, primes were clearly sharper with better IQ. I had a set of primes and loved using them. Now I’m on the cusp of building a new collection and I have to admit I’m finding the choice difficult. My heart is telling me to go back to what you know and are comfortable with, SandyP, your list looks like pure heaven to me. My head is telling me to get a couple of zooms that cover the range plus probably one wide prime at the bottom end.
Sounds like some are married to their 135 (maybe mistress is a better analogy lol)  Is the 70-200 f2.8 really that good that it matches it! I wish Canon would give the option for a black casing though.
If I was a pro I’d have both but it’s just not a realistic budget, damn this being poor malarkey.

One question, do prime users end up with noticeably dirtier sensors that zoom users?

elflord

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 705
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #41 on: April 06, 2012, 08:04:39 AM »
With all this new equipment being released by canon offering great ISO performance. Is an all prime kit seem outdated? I see most opt for pro-zooms than for primes, And some don't own any primes at all. Instead going for 16-35, 24-70, and 70-200 combo.

If you had to forsake zooms or primes, which would it be and why? I could do 80% of all my work with just the 50mm and I'd like to read the varied opinions on primes vs zooms.

I started with the 15-85mm and the 50mm f/1.4 on APS-C. The zoom did very little for me -- max aperture is f/5.6 at the long end, that's a lot of dof on APS-C. In contrast, I loved the 50. So now I have:

35L, Sigma 85mm, 135L, 50mm f/1.4 on 5DII.

pwp

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1543
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #42 on: April 06, 2012, 09:07:07 AM »
Good quality L zooms have been gods gift to busy photographers working in dynamic environments where a lens change may mean lost shots, a barely perceptible improvement or a dirty sensor. I wouldn't mind betting that by far the greater percentage of reproduced images both commercial & editorial are shot with zooms by very satisfied photographers for very satisfied clients.

Other than when I need 300 f/2.8 or 400 f/2.8 I'll be using zooms. About the only time I'll reach for a short prime is when I am after a specific look that f/1.4 or f/1.8 may deliver, or when I'm battling against the light and am reluctant to go higher on the iso, usually because of personal & client expectations for IQ.

There are good, valid reasons for shooting with zooms or primes, but I think the zoom/prime debate has skewed way out of balance towards L primes being perceived as some sort of holy grail. But unless you are making good money from your photography, there is scant justification for spending up big on expensive, comparatively limited primes. Few viewers are going to swoon over the quality of the bokeh, what turns people on are powerful, gutsy images  that COMMUNICATE. As my first picture editor kept reminding us, content is king.

Paul Wright
« Last Edit: April 06, 2012, 09:09:29 AM by pwp »

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #42 on: April 06, 2012, 09:07:07 AM »

jdramirez

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 2332
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #43 on: April 06, 2012, 10:50:01 AM »
My first three lenses I had were the kit 18-55, a 50mm f/1.8, and a 55-250mm (I'm not considering the POS 75-300 I had for a year).  And I used the prime 80% of the time, and the 55-250 20% of the time. 

I now have a 24-105mm f/4 L and a 50mm f/1.4 and I use both relatively equally.  I love both equally, so I'm not quite sure.  I think I like to have the flexibility of a zoom when I'm hand holding, but if I am tripod mounting, I'm more than happy enough to use the prime (because I can take my time setting up the composition of the shot). 

So it is a hard question... but I do think I prefer the prime over the zoom... but it is by a small margin.
Upgrade  path.->means the former was sold for the latter.

XS->60D->5d Mkiii:18-55->24-105L:75-300->55-250->70-300->70-200 f4L USM->70-200 f/2.8L USM->70-200 f/2.8L IS Mkii:50 f/1.8->50 f/1.4->100L->85mm f/1.8 USM-> 8mm ->100L & 85L

elflord

  • 5D Mark III
  • ******
  • Posts: 705
    • View Profile
Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #44 on: April 06, 2012, 01:31:38 PM »
Good quality L zooms have been gods gift to busy photographers working in dynamic environments where a lens change may mean lost shots, a barely perceptible improvement or a dirty sensor. I wouldn't mind betting that by far the greater percentage of reproduced images both commercial & editorial are shot with zooms by very satisfied photographers for very satisfied clients.

If you're prepared to change lenses when necessary, and you don't have to get every shot -- why not just use primes ? I understand if a pro comes to a wedding and only delivers one shot to their client, that would be a failure, regardless of how good the shot is.

With a hobby shooter however, they are free to deliver as many or few images as they like, and usually have the access to their subjects that eliminates the need to work quickly. I'll add that I generally deliver much fewer images than the number most pro photographers would be required to deliver.

Quote
There are good, valid reasons for shooting with zooms or primes, but I think the zoom/prime debate has skewed way out of balance towards L primes being perceived as some sort of holy grail. But unless you are making good money from your photography, there is scant justification for spending up big on expensive, comparatively limited primes. Few viewers are going to swoon over the quality of the bokeh, what turns people on are powerful, gutsy images  that COMMUNICATE. As my first picture editor kept reminding us, content is king.

I find primes are a good tool for getting powerful images. I don't really feel the need to "justify" this choice to anyone, it's just my preference. 
« Last Edit: April 06, 2012, 01:39:19 PM by elflord »

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Prime VS Zooms.
« Reply #44 on: April 06, 2012, 01:31:38 PM »