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    • I guess another way to ask this is - What is in your ultimate camera bag? ...and why?

      If we put a $2000 max limit per lense could you outfit your travel bag with what you consider the three perfect lenses for EVERYTHING - landscape, portrait, astro, sport, street etc.

      Would you go for a bag full of primes or is there a perfect zoom you love, or are your legs your zoom?

    • Putting a price per lens makes it more challenging. I've shot Leica Ms for many decades and not too familiar with lens from other manufacturers. I did own a Nikon F-3 back in the early 80s but soon sold as I preferred the range finder. So I guess I will go with the Nikon glass.

      If I had to choose glass based on what I know (or think I know)...

      Given the max price point I'd likely go with a Nikon body and use the following glass...

      AF-S 35mm f/1.4

      AF-S 58mm f/1.4

      AF-S 105mm f/1.4

    • AF-S 58mm f/1.4

      Interesting choice as a few steps with the 35 and you are taking basically the same shot, no?

      Putting a price limit makes it more realistic, not everyone can grab glass at the very top level, intrigued to see if anyone has a suggestion for a very reasonably priced lens 'anyone' could afford.

      For me (using Sony) that would be Sigma 30mm f/1.4, very sharp and when you take your time and use the 'focus magnifier' it gets even better, and less than $300 currently

    • I've been "collecting" Leica glass for 40+ years. I certainly could not afford to replace what I now have and use. Why I trade-in M digital bodies fairly often to maximize value. And very reluctant to switch to a new system simply due to the investment I have in glass. Plus, there's not much more of an analog camera in the digital age than the M. My brain is still analog.

      I'm predominately a street/cafe/bar photographer. And some wildlife and landscapes on walk-abouts. The range finder allows me to shoot from the hip or from a stealth position and I usually wait until the subject is in a specific distance zone. Hence, the ability to move to achieve the same shot may not afford itself. Especially in European style bars and cafes.

      For landscapes and wildlife, I suspect you're probably correct the 35 and 58 can achieve the same shot by moving a few paces.

      I guess it comes down to how close you want/can to get to your subject.

      I'm merely a self-taught amateur so I will certainly defer to the more knowledgable photographer.

    • my fav lens is my canon 300 2.8lis. I bought it in 2006 so it scraped under your cost limit now.

      I’m always astonished at how it locks focus on a subject. Even with a 2x converter attached, the focus is lightning fast.

      I intend to shoot road racing here in Ireland once the covid crap is gone.

      The lens is ideal for this. Photo below taken in pouring rain with a 2x converter attached, in 2007

    • the other lens I own are the 24-105 and the 70-200 2.8 is.

      I would like to try a proper wide angle lens on a full frame camera some time.

    • for me i will like to take following lenses:

      16-35 F4 IS, 24-105 F4 IS 50MM 1.4

      I have 17-40L, 70-200 and 50mm 1.4

      sometime i have to change between 70-200 and 17-40 a lot 24-105 can be time, space and weight saver. i already have 50mm 1.4 ART which i love to have around for streets

    • While I occasionally eye the purchase of a longer lens my photography tends to focus on macro and landscape images.

      I shoot Fuji, and the 3 lenses I take with me are XF10-24mm F4, XF18-135mm F3.5-5.6, and XF80mm F2.8 macro.

      I also have the XF55-200mm F3.5-4.8 but I don't use it as often as the other lenses.

    • Can I suggest that choosing lenses, without specifying what you propose to usually photograph with them is kind of like choosing a hammer size, before you have picked out the nails you intend to use. Rail road spikes require a very different hammer entirely than do small thumb tacks to mend a tiny split in a picture frame, say.

      Are you wanting wide apertures to gather as much light for astro photography, or are you wanting the, perfectly flat field and close focus of a macro lens, or are you wanting the fast handling and focus of a long lens to shoot birds in flight? ......

      As you specified - prices matter too. What is your desired final file/print size? Can you accomplish your goals with a smaller format camera, or do you need the larger file size, and shallower depth of field of a larger format tool. Or do you need a really larger format too, like 4x5? Until these questions are decided, talking about which lenses kind of puts the cart in front of the mule doesn't it?

      I ask, because for me, sometimes, I prefer a smaller format tool - cheaper generally, smaller, and easier to pack, carry, and so are the lenses. But other times, I want/need the extra file size, clarity, detail of a larger format camera which requires different, larger, heavier, more expensive lenses too.

      Which set of tools I choose to bring along, depends on what my expected tasks for the day are. What specific body are you planning on utilizing? m4/3, APS-C crop, or full frame DSLR or larger?

      As a motorcyclist, I suspect you are limiting your tools due to size and weight constraints - the vibration of my ride, always concerned we when I was carrying fine camera gear a bit too, as well as the risks of carrying small expensive, easily stolen tools..

      I think on a bike I would consider a Canon EOS R today - great body that shoots great video and stills. I would carry a Lowas Venus 15mm f2.0 mechanical lens in R mount, and add a 24 to 105 f 4 R mount lens, and the Canon RF 24-240.

      One can argue about the risks of dust on sensors with interchangeable lenes, maybe worse on bodies without a mirrorbox.

      - if that is a concern then Sony RX10 Mk IV 24mm-600mm equivalent might be an excellent choice, indeed. Or the current Oly Tough camera.

    • I shoot Fuji now, but when I had a Canon APS-C my setup was almost identical. And it's been this way for I think 6 years now.

      I have the XF10-24mmF4 R OIS, the XF18-55mmF2.8-4 R LM OIS, and the XF55-200mmF3.5-4.8 R LM OIS.

      Generally I'm quite happy with them. I think I use them all about the same amount, with maybe a little more emphasis on the two extremes. Honestly, I'm not sure that I would upgrade any of them, even if I had the money. I basically only shoot landscape, so fast focus and wide apertures aren't really necessary for me. A new body eventually will probably be my only change.

    • As a motorcyclist, I suspect you are limiting your tools due to size and weight constraints -

      Yes this is a good point directed at me, but I was more interested for someone getting into photography, a budget but a decent one, can three lenses with a decent body cover most of what a person would like to choose to take a shot of.

      Pro level, switching bags for specific shoots is a whole other ball game.

      So as a more direct question to you without shooting specific genres, in your early days...what were your three dream lenses above all others?

    • I'm not a professional, just an amateur of over 60 years playing with cameras.

      Dream lenses tend to be good at one specific task or skill or purpose. Pros frequently need tools that are "good enough to get the job done" but not necessarily dreamy.

      Very large aperture lenses are great fun, I love them and own several - because their very large aperture lets them gather light very quickly, and lets them blur the backgrounds very effectively, and create a very shallow depth of field. I love playing with an f2.0 135 or an f 1.2 85mm or my Sigma f1.4 105 mm lens. I store them in a closet at home, not on a travelling motorcycle.

      But the very thing, that huge frontal element, that make them so dreamy, so appealing, also makes them very large, very heavy, and 3-4x as expensive.

      You can buy a very nice 85mm f1.8 lens for 1/4 the price of an 85mm f1.2 lens, and it will be smaller, lighter, and easier to carry. UNLESS you plan to shoot with the aperture wide open for that shallow DOF all the time. you won't see that much difference in your images.

      Yes, the more expensive lenses MAY be a bit sharper, but a standard 24-105 f4.0 IS L will probably provide very nice images in their place, but without that very shallow DOF.

      SO do you really, really want that shallow DOF all the time. That is a question that comes down to what you want to photograph and why, like I said in my first post. For the few occasions that I really want that very shallow DOF I CAN just use my iPhone X in portait mode these days.........

      IF I COULD ONLY HAVE THREE LENSES, I would go with a mechanical ( neither autofocus nor auto iris ) very wide lens, like the Lawo Venus 15mm f2.0 mount for an EOS R or a Sony body. It is Chinese, inexpensive ( no AF , no auto iris - Mechanical only ), small, FAST, and very sharp lens with extensive depth of field. Auto focus not needed very much at all. It will shoot stars with aplomb in the dark.

      I would buy a 24-105 or so f4.0 IS L lens - sharp, fast enough for out of doors work with modern bodies, good AF, and a nice breadth of focal lengths for shooting people, portraits, and groups of people or landscapes. Some would prefer the faster f2.8 but shorter focal length 24-70 f2.8 lens. A big heavier, more expensive, and larger, with less reach.

      For the EOS R mirroless body, I would then add the RF 24-240mm f4.0-6.6 lens. Long enough for some sports, or limited wildlife shooting, some car or motocycle racing, and small enough and inexpensive enough to be useful. Not perfect optically, but with the builit in software profiles pretty darn good images. Shoots good video too.

      If I wanted a crop body instead of an R mirrorless full frame, I might pick up the current Tamron 16-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD MACRO Lens. At a 24-420 mm equivalent zoom range in FF, this is a pretty useful lens on a crop body. Wide enough to be good for landscapes, and long enough to really work for some careful wildlife shooting. Is it as sharp as seperate Canon prime lenses? Absolutely not! BUT, it is sharp enough after len profiles and a run through LightRoom - yes, once through LightRoom the minimal chromatic aberration all disappears, and the lens is remarkable useful. And it costs less than 1/12 the price of a EOS 600 f4.0

      Before I got my R body, a Canon crop body was my walk around tool, and the current 90D from Canon is pretty good both at stills and video. It is small for a crop body, really no bigger than my Sony RX10 Mk iV

      I have watched folks kind of sneer when I show up with a Canon crop body and a Tamron travel zoom, so I have a gallery here of a few representative shots shot with a crop body - either a 7DMK II or a 70D or an 80D - and the current Tamron 16-300 listed above. I like it better than Tamron's 28-300 for FF bodies. Take a look and feel free to offer criticisms of the lenses optical performance or my compositional choices. I have over 10,000 frames shot with mine, so it has held up pretty well.

      I suggest you don't just take my advice here, but listen to the reasons for my advice, then you can adapt my advice for the camera body of your choice - whether Sony, Nikon, Canon, Fuji, Olympus, etc.

      In lieu of the 24-105 f4.0 IS L - some might opt instead for a nice 50mm f1.4 Sigma ART lens on their body of choice - It is a great lens, not too expensive, VERY sharp, and you can zoom with your feet instead of your lens. This works better for zooming with peple, than it does with landscape shooting.

      I always say that real pros in any occupation, know way more than just one way to skin a cat. Same is true for photography I think.

    • Leica offers the TRI-ELMAR-M 16-18-21mm f/4 ASPH zoom but that doesn't suit my style.

      I prefer fast prime lenses.

      Interesting comment about the zoom preference. I bought the Nikon F-3 in the mid-70s along with 2 zoom lenses. I don't recall the exact focal length, but something like 20-55 and 55-200. They weren't very fast, maybe 4.0, probably slower. I was living in Italy for school and shooting a lot of interiors. I just couldn't get the images I saw in my mind's eye with the zoom. No doubt my shortcomings and not the gear. Sold the kit to another student and went back to my M gear.

      My uncle, a retired USAF member, gave me some of his older M glass and found my first used M body for me in the early 70s. I've been hooked on M ever since.

    • Ahhhh.

      For the beginner!

      That is definitely a different ball game!

      I helped my daughter start out with a Nikon mirrorless body and the following zooms, 16-50 and 50-250. She's been very happy with those zooms. She also a 35 f 1.8 S which is probably her go to lens.

      I believe all components are within your price parameters.

    • Once you get addicted to the fast primes, it's tough trying something else for the very reasons you mentioned.

      Probably why I have stuck with the Leica M for so long. I can quickly decide what I want in focus and I don't worry too much about light unless it is really dark.

      I rented a Noctilux 50 f 0.95 for a 10 day trip; it is a true "dream" lens. But, it was big, heavy and not a lot of fun to tote around. But, all I needed was a single candle illuminating the subject within ~5' to capture the subject. It is without a doubt the most amazing lens I have used for capturing shots with so little available light. If only one did not need to take out a second mortgage for this lens!

      The film I shot with the Noctilux is stored in a climate controlled facility. Once I can travel again, I will scan some of my favorites and publish.

    • When I switched over to Fujifilm the total cost of my gear was only about $2,000. I bought two lenses used and the X-T20 is a budget body, but it has the same image quality as the X-T2.

      For someone getting started it's better to buy cheaper and upgrade as you start to see areas where your equipment is limiting you. I would even recommend starting with a single lens for most people. Then if feel like you need something wider you look to fill that gap. Look for something longer if you tend more toward that end. If you want to do macros, look for a lens that works better than what you have. Like @Pathfinder said, low cost doesn't mean bad pictures. Figure out what your needs are before you go after dream lenses, because what you think of as a dream lens may not actually be the dream you thought it would be.

      Here's one with the 10-24:

      The 18-55:

      And the 55-200:

    • Autofocus, IS in mode 2 which stops vertical movement but allows me to pan horizontally.

      CameraCanon EOS-1D Mark II N

      Focal Length600.0 mm (751.9 mm in 35mm)


      Exposure Time0.00063s (1/1600)


    • I have watched folks kind of sneer when I show up with a Canon crop body and a Tamron travel zoom, so I have a gallery here of a few representative shots shot with a crop body - either a 7DMK II or a 70D or an 80D - and the current Tamron 16-300 listed above.

      I used a Canon 30d and canon 18-200 lens as a travel setup for years. It was cheap but gave good results. Any flaw in the photographs was down to me, not the lens or camera. Link to some photos I took with the 30d and 18-200 lens, the camera and lens were excellent, any flaws were my fault.

      I bought a 10-18 efs lens recently. Cheap and gives 16mm equivalent with a 7d.

      These two lens and a 7d or similar camera would be a great cheap travel kit.

    • Better gear can, potentially, let one make better pictures, or capture better pictures, in more demanding conditions, but only if the user's skills match the improvement in the camera/lenses being used. I learned many years a ago that a better camera was no guarantee for better images in my hands,

      I like your set of images, all in monochrome.

      I used the 18-200 for a while as well, most of the images I shot in a meet up in Chicago were done with the EOS EFS 18-200. The roof top Tiffany windows were shot with a very old, first generation m4/3s body, the Panasonic DMC-GF1 and the Panasonic 20mm f1.7. I like to choose the tool by the demands of the task , if I can. @Richard will remember this flash mob shoot.

    • I have a Sony FF A7RIII. So my reply will be concerning Sony.

      If they will be the zooms:

      1. 16-35mm f/2.8 (or similar like 14-24mm)

      2. 24-105mm f/4 (because this is very good lens and covers quite good angle)

      3. 100-400mm f/5.6-6.8

      If Primes:

      1. 21mm f/1.4

      2. 35 or 40mm f/1.4 or f/2

      3. 85mm - 90mm - 100mm f/1.4-1.8-2.8 macro