Zooms Exclusively

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by stan_schurman|1, Dec 25, 2009.

  1. OK, bordering on heresy for some I know, but how many of you use zoom lenses exclusively, or almost exclusively? I have a 35-105mm F/3.5 Ai Nikkor and an 80-200mm F/4.5 Ai Nikkor (a classic lense) that I use on my D5000 (manual focusing and metering obviously). Soon I'll be purchasing the 70-300mm Nikon AF/VR, but for now it's strictly manual. I like the flexiblity that these two lenses afford and I've been more than happy with the results although, admittedly, I don't sweat every pixel. If the photo generally looks good, I'm content. Anyway, there it is. Anyone else like using zooms rather than having a bunch of fixed focul length lenses?
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  2. I use both zoom and fixed focal length lenses, IMHO they both have their uses.
     
  3. I have a Nikon D700. All lenses are zoom ... 17-35mm F2.8, 24-70mm F2.8, 70-200mm F2.8. But I do have one fixed, a 300mm F4 used with a 1.4 extender for birds.
     
  4. Scott said:
    IMHO they both have their uses.​
    I don't think that sentiment can be argued with. At this stage, my only prime worth mentioning is a 50/1.8. My next investments will include better zooms. My reasons for not having a selection of primes is two-fold. Partly financial, and partly because I haven't reached the point where I need them.
     
  5. Zooms are good for precise framing when you can't afford to crop with small format and you can't back up or move forward to adjust framing with a fixed focal length lens.
    That said I like the smaller and faster primes for walk about and travel but have zooms available if I need them. I seem to get by with only three lenses, a moderate wide, standard angle and a short tele. I don't mind taking the time to change lenses even for one shot.
    All comes down to what your willing to put up with I guess.
     
  6. Ken Rockwell loves the Nikon 18-200. I am sure he is right about how good it is. But I prefer wider apertures. However, if I did more photography e.g. travel, I'd consider buying it for some applications where light levels aren't an issue and where changing lenses wouldn't be practical.
     
  7. I shoot almost entirely with zooms, but I do use a Nikon 10.5mm FF FE, 35mm f/1.8, 50mm f/1.8, and 85mm f/1.8. Of them the FF FE and the 50mm get the most use.
     
  8. I have a 12-24, and a couple of other zooms that I rarely use, I shoot almost exclusively with the 12-24 or primes, 24mm, 28mm, 50mm, 105mm(regular and micro, 200mm. I have a few gaps in my primes that I will be adding to. I actually really enjoy shooting primes although I am sure someday I will have a couple more zooms.
     
  9. For the last 4 years all I had were zooms. I only recently got a fast 50mm for occations when I want to do night landscapes or need narrow depth of field. Todays zoom are very good and offer a level flexability not available with primes.
    I think you will find most people today use zooms most of the time. While it is true that a good prime will out perform a zoom, todays quality zooms are so good that it is often very hard if not impossible to see a difference. The skill of the photographer will have a greater impact on on image quality then the type of lens used.
     
  10. For the last 4 years all I had were zooms. I only recently got a fast 50mm for occations when I want to do night landscapes or need narrow depth of field. Todays zoom are very good and offer a level flexability not available with primes.
    I think you will find most people today use zooms most of the time. While it is true that a good prime will out perform a zoom, todays quality zooms are so good that it is often very hard if not impossible to see a difference. The skill of the photographer will have a greater impact on on image quality then the type of lens used.
     
  11. I have way more primes than zooms (about 50:10), but tend to use them in about equal measure. I don't see one as being better than the other in a general sense; which I use depends on the situation. I have obtained good (and not so good) images with both types of lens.
     
  12. I am a prime shooter... Olympus Zuiko heritage glass is so darned good... For me the biggest plus is the speed of the lenses - my list includes f 1.2, 1.4, 1.8, 2.0, 2.8 and a slow 3.5. Most modern zooms do a good job, but cannot compare to the kind of depth and character of my sometimes 40 year-old glass.
    I reserve the zooms for times when I cannot focus manually or when I have no time to 'do photography'... Kids birthday parties, etc.
     
  13. I have only one zoom I regulary use, and that's my 17-40mm f4. I'd replace it with a prime if Canon made something small and good in the 17 to 21mm range (the 14mm is out of my budget, heavier than the zoom, and not good with filters, while the 20mm is far inferior to the 17-40 according to most people and pictures I've seen.

    I'm considering the new Voigtlander 20mm pancake, or the Zeiss 18mm (though the latter is also a bit expensive)

    Why primes? Depends on the focal length, but either size/weight or speed. Fixed-aperture zooms are always big and heavy, and variable-aperture zooms are a pain if you shoot in manual mode....
     
  14. I mostly use primes, but if I were to use zooms exclusively I'd try to find one on the wider end then 35-105mm on the wide end, especially with a 1.5x sensor factor. I live on the wide end and having nothing less then around 50mm equivelent in 35mm would kill my soul.
     

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