Which lens to keep

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by michael_rogers|10, Jan 2, 2013.

  1. Hello, this is my first post so forgive me if this is in the wrong place. I have been unable to get out and shoot due to some family matters and am in need of selling couple of my lenses.
    I shoot a D7000. Of my 3 lenses which would you suggest keeping? Nikon 18-200 VR, nikon 50mm 1.8, or tamron 28-75 2.8 (non bim).
    Please offer me some advice as I am torn between the 18-200 and tamron. enjoy both but need some money for something else at this time.
    thank you for your help
    mike
     
  2. Can you provide any insight into what you shoot, and under what conditions? Those are three different tools for different jobs, and all advice is going to be wrong without knowing more about your shooting style and subjects.
     
  3. What do you like to photo? For general purpose and travel, the 18-200mm is the most versatile.
    Kent in SD
     
  4. Guess easy way is just say I get in the truck and drive around and what ever catches my eye. Probably say that would be landscapes. Tried portraits but I haven't done enough of them and never happy with how they turn out. Still new at this and try to shoot in raw and manual mode.
    Again I am thankful for your help.
    mike
     
  5. the 18-200 gives you the most flexibility and reasonable quality
     
  6. Perhaps you should forget about raw and manual mode until you have a few (thousand) more frames under your belt? They would seem to
    be the least important things about which to worry when you're starting out.
     
  7. Given your description, I would say to keep the 18-200; more flexible and versatile than the Tamron (which is probably optically better, but for landscapes it misses an important bit of wide angle).
     
  8. Tough choice because the lenses are so different. Perhaps you should sort through your images to see what focal lengths you use the most. If you rarely use the long or shot end of the 18-200mm, the choice is easy. If you often use the long and short ends of the 18-200mm, you may want to keep it. Of course, the fast aperture of the Tamron makes it very attractive. How do you find its image quality compared to the 18-200mm?
    Another option if you often shoot on the wide end and less often on the long end is to keep the Tamron and get an inxpensive 18-55mm lens (well under $100 used).
    Keep in mind that you can always repurchase the lens you sell or something similar in the future as your situation and needs change.
     
  9. The 28-75 is an odd match for DX. I'd sell that one.
    More likely, I'd sell both that and the 18-200, buy a 16-85, and pocket the difference if there is any.
     
  10. It is a compromise, whatever you decide. If I'd be in your shoes I'd keep Tamron. My reasons:
    1. This lens will let you use your camera in low light... with 18-200 you're out of the equation...
    2. This lens has better IQ than 18-200, performs well wide open and stopped down at f4 is very sharp. I prefer less range and better IQ than huge range and modest IQ. For best range/modest IQ the best option is to sell everything and to buy a compact camera with a superzoom.
    3. At a later time when finances will be OK you have space to grow either in wide or in telephoto, adding a different good lens. With 18-200 every lens you will add would be somehow redundant... like the three of them you have now.
    4. Tamron is a nice portrait lens. I cannot say that about 18-200.
    5. Tamron will limit you mostly in the wide-angle area... but if necessary you can learn how to stitch more images together. Later on as was already suggested you can add an inexpensive 18-55/VR or a better WA lens. In the meantime you have plenty of time to experiment and to improve with the lens you have. Knowing better your lens will make you know for sure what's next lens you need.
    Good luck!
    P.S. Having said this... there is nothing wrong to sell all your lenses and to buy a 35mm f/1.8 DX lens as your only lens. You may feel limited in range but this is the way many people got involved into photography, including myself, and the learning curve is guaranteed better than using a cheapo superzoom.
     
  11. you will not get a lot of cash if you sell the 50mm f1.8. keep it and the 18-200mm.
     
  12. buy a 35mm f/1.8 DX lens as your only lens. You may feel limited in range but this is the way many people got involved into photography, including myself, and the learning curve is guaranteed better than using a cheapo superzoom.​
    As much as I prefer shooting primes (and I do), I never quite got how using primes makes you a better photographer or makes a better learning tool. The "zoom with your feet" bla sounds nice, but it's simply not the same as changing a focal length (in the same way that stitching is not the same as a true wide-angle shot). And as for primes making you move more to find a suitable angle for your photo, that's a matter of discipline, not your lens.
    I'm no fan of superzooms, but if you're restricted to one lens for whatever reason, they're incredibly useful.
     
  13. I don't think that only a 35mm lens on a DX body is a good choice. It is not wide enough for many shots and it not long enough for many shots. I would have kept the 18-200mm zoom lens, learned how to use it to it's fullest extent and lived with the quality of it. You can always use flash if you are shooting in low light, and your camera has good high ISO quality. It is better to get that shot than to not get it because you don't have the focal length for it.
     
  14. As much as I prefer shooting primes (and I do), I never quite got how using primes makes you a better photographer or makes a better learning tool. The "zoom with your feet" bla sounds nice, but it's simply not the same as changing a focal length (in the same way that stitching is not the same as a true wide-angle shot). And as for primes making you move more to find a suitable angle for your photo, that's a matter of discipline, not your lens.
    I'm no fan of superzooms, but if you're restricted to one lens for whatever reason, they're incredibly useful.​
    If we go back to foundations photography means "drawing with light". A fast fixed focal lens is a better tool to learn the process of how to use light rather than a superzoom. Because it offers you the flexibility to play with f/1.8 as well with f/16. Related to this you learn how to correctly adjust your shutter speed and your ISO. A fast prime offers plenty of space to experiment. Best use of DOF... How to get pictures in low light... how in daylight... Nightscapes, concerts, party, street scenes... A fixed focal length lens force you to get involved... to be in the midst of the action if you want a picture. You can not take tons of pictures. But you take a few keepers. You learn to be creative. You start to see the world through your fixed focal lens. You go to get the image not merely trying to bring the image to you.
    Sure, a superzoom will let the OP to sit comfortably in his truck and to take hundreds of snapshots. Coming home he will merely face this dilema: why these images are so common, having nothing special? And I bet you he does not have a flash to help with the lack of light when necessary.
    IMHO the difference between the two situations is like the same between the two option to eat out in the town. First option is to go in a place where you pay $5 and you eat whatever you want from many options available, all looking nice but tasting the same... the second option is to go in an 'a la carte' restaurant with a fine selection of meals where you are limited to pick only one dish... :)
    At least this is my perspective.
     
  15. There is aperture to play with on a zoom lens too, Mihai. And it records light, together with the camera.
    A 52mm equivalent focal length (the 35mm f/1.8) is hardly a good focal length for shooting landscapes. It is not a good advice, IMO.
     
  16. Mihai, characterisations like "a superzoom will let the OP to sit comfortably in his truck and to take hundreds of snapshots" make me take your point a whole lot less serious. In the hands of somebody willing, a superzoom can deliver the goods just as well as your (or my) primes. To put users of superzooms down as lazy shoot-and-pray photographers is nonsens.
    As said, I shoot primes a lot. And the whole statement on "forcing me to get involved", "take less shots"... that has got totally nothing to do with using primes. I can also do that with a zoom. That has got everything to do with discipline, and the kind of photo I want (or do not want) to make. If you need a prime to discipline your shooting, fine, but don't assume we're all the same. We're not all served with the limitation you (and I!) prefer.

    Comparing a prime to a fine meal and a zoom to a fast food meal is downright snobbish. Lenses are tools. All of them. Choose the one that fits your use best. Now, the OP stated landscapes as one of the main uses. I'd want at least 24mm on DX for that, preferably a bit wider - and going to ~85mm more or less on the other end. Fast apertures for landscape work - it's really not that relevant. It's going to be f/8. So, the 18-200 fits the bill really nice, though I agree with Peter that the 16-85VR is even nicer.
     
  17. [[a good focal length for shooting landscapes]]
    What, exactly, is a "good focal length" for landscapes then?
     
  18. I would keep the 50mm ....
     
  19. A 52mm equivalent focal length (the 35mm f/1.8) is hardly a good focal length for shooting landscapes.​
    In photographic terms, this is standard coverage close to the magnification of the human eye delivering natural-looking results. This makes it naturally one of the best FL for landscape work. In fact there is no rule for FL in landscaping. Any lens from 14mm to 400mm or even more could be successfully used for landscape. In landscape you need the lens to be sharp across the frame and a good eye for composition. A tripod is a great plus.
    And the whole statement on "forcing me to get involved", "take less shots"... that has got totally nothing to do with using primes. I can also do that with a zoom.​
    Wouter, I fully agree: you can do it. But I make a recommendation to the OP who definitely seems with no experience in photography. IMHO a fast prime is the best path for him to get the necessary experience.
    Lenses are tools. All of them. Choose the one that fits your use best.​
    This is exactly my point... IMHO the best tool to learn photography, including here landscape and portraits is not a superzoom but a fast prime. You have my arguments, I have yours... we do not necessary need to agree with each other - we just see differently the tool.
    No matter what OP will decide for himself is a compromise. There is no right or wrong decision. The only thing that may differ for him is the learning curve.
     
  20. We agree and disagree, Mihai, no problem. There is seldom just one correct answer.
     
  21. ...this is standard coverage close to the magnification of the human eye...This makes it naturally one of the best FL for landscape work.​
    I think magnification must be a wrong word to use here. What do you mean?
    When I used my Nikkor AF 35-70mm f/2.8D shooting landscapes, I found the 35mm limiting numerous times during a hike. So I hardly use if for landscapes anymore (maybe if I have brought several lenses it will be one of them). I am going for my Nikkor AF-S 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR now. It does the trick for my kind of landscape shooting.
    I know that you can use all focal lengths shooting landscapes, but only using a 35mm? No way...
     
  22. From reading all of your post the answer is the one I already knew. Get out and shoot. Then I can make the decision on which to keep and which to sell.
    Thank you all
    mike
     
  23. i would sell the 18-200. it's the worst optically of all your lenses and will fetch the most $$. the 28-75 is a keeper, especially if you do portraits or ever migrate to FX. the 50/1.8 is largely extraneous as well, since the tamron is just as sharp at 2.8.
     

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