I am now learning how to use my new D800E. My current FX lenses are the Nikkor 16-35 f/4 VR and the Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 VR 2.
I do mostly landscape photography but also do some street photography. Obviously, when walking around with my camera and taking random shots, I am not carrying my tripod, so being able to "properly" shoot and hold the camera steady enough so that I can take advantage of the cameras resolution is very important.
I have considered various lenses and I was impressed with the AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED weight and IQ. But I do not do Macro photography, so the salesman opined that wasn't the lens I should consider because of focusing, etc. I have also considered the 24-70mm 2.8 and the two latest 85mm lenses. I also looked at the AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR, but although I liked its range for a walk around lens, it just didn't seem to have the IQ. The salesman said it's IQ was just as good as my 16-35, but it sure didn't look like it to me...
What do you think would me the best choice for me as a high IQ walk around lens?
#1. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
tough question as its a "taste" question, however, the D800e does perform better with pro glass. I love my 70-200 f/2.8 (almost doesn't come of the camera for steet stuff), more up close and person (and landscape) and I am using the 24-70 f/2.8
as for the others, i have no experience with on the D800/e bodies. except the 105, which, it also very nice.
#3. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 1
Thanks for your comments.
Fanboy, you have some great shots on your site - thanks for your input. I made some comments on your site, and hit the "wrong button" and it disappeared - don't know if it posted or not. Pls let me know.
#5. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
Great Falls, US
Have you considered a 50 F/1.4 prime?
Take advantage of all those pixels that Nikon gave us.
It will make the camera very light, responsive, and easy to carry around all day long. It has better image quality than any zoom. For landscape you have terrific field of view and can crop at will. For street photography it's unobtrusive and won't call attention to you.
It's also the least expensive of all the options you listed. I have the 24-70 and it has been my go-to lens on the D700, but I'm seriously considering keeping the 50 mounted on the D800 for walking around.
#6. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
I believe the 24-70 would be the best choice for you, if you want to achieve optimum IQ - at least this what I use with my D700. If I want to go lighter and further improve IQ, I use the manual Zeiss 35/2 prime.
#9. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 8
Great Falls, US
The 85mm is a great lens - one of the best focal lengths for portraits - wonderful bokeh at 1.4 or 2.0. It gives you comfortable working distance to your subject. If you are serious about portraits you should have one in your bag. As a walk around lens I find 85mm to be a little too long - in tight spaces you may not be able to get far enough back to get the image you want.
#10. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 9
I would agree with this and dsouleles's prev. comment for using the 50mm f1.4. I also feel the 50mm would be a better option for street photography because a smaller lens being pointed at someone is less likely to be noticed versus the bigger and much more noticable 24-70 being pointed at them. And in lower light, the 50mm f1.4 will allow a little more head room for shutter speeds/iso's used. It would also be much lighter.... don't get me wrong, I love my 24-70 but for strickly street shooting, I would use the 50mm and maybe even my 85mm f1.8g depending on how wide the streets are....
#11. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 7
St Petersburg, RU
The 50 1.8 may possibly have better image quality and is 1/2 the price, a bit smaller and lighter. But it all depends on your style, a 24-70 certainly has the IQ and a desirable range. I have one that replaced my 17-55(not gotten rid of that one yet) and like it a lot on the D800 and D7000. I am finding that at widest angles is not quite wide enough however so will consider looking for a 14-24 when my finances recover from the D800 and 24-70, and 24 1.4. For days when going out knowing I will run into a situation where 1.4 at 24 is best, I love the look of images with it shoot wide open on the street. For several years my preferred walking around lens has been the 70-200 but the 24-70 is seeing more street time right now. The longer lens is unequaled as a street people shooter or candids where it is possible to catch people more relaxed and natural than a shorter working distance would allow. There is a real difference in how people hold themselves when they aware of a camera around, even if it is a small 50mm. The 70-200 is just much better at truly candid, natural shots.
You have gotten some good suggestions but whether they are good for you depends on your style and your subjects more than the details of a particular lens. ALL of them will shine on a D800. Every lens I have just works better on a D800 than anything they were on before, including some pretty modest Dx lenses. Stan St Petersburg Russia
#12. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 11 Mon 11-Jun-12 03:16 PM by Henry64
I believe (since I don't have my 800e yet) that you'll would find the 24-120/F4 an excellent -walk around- lens. It's lighter, it's cheaper, has better reach - oh, and it has VR. Although VR is not always a good thing, it gives you great help in low light situations. IQ is just about on par with(in) 24-70mm, only have to be stopped stop down one. Between 70-120 it's just a 50mm bonus reach over the 24-70mm, still with a good IQ. IQ wise the 24-120 is better than or at least as good as your 16-35, well mine is. I have the nikkor 16-35, 24-120, 70-200, and a D700 - 24-120 is such a great lens I hardly ever use the two other lenses anymore.
Sure, I acknowledge the 24-70 is a better lens it's faster and sharper - but not by much. I don't think a 24-120 will let you down.
#13. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 5
I actually like this idea. I currently have my 50 1.4 on the block right now, but I may pull it with this in mind. Thanks Dean.
>Have you considered a 50 F/1.4 prime? > >Take advantage of all those pixels that Nikon gave us. > >It will make the camera very light, responsive, and easy to >carry around all day long. It has better image quality than >any zoom. For landscape you have terrific field of view and >can crop at will. For street photography it's unobtrusive and >won't call attention to you. > >It's also the least expensive of all the options you listed. >I have the 24-70 and it has been my go-to lens on the D700, >but I'm seriously considering keeping the 50 mounted on the >D800 for walking around. > >Dean > >
#15. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 14
St Petersburg, RU
Hi Roger, Thanks for the advice. I have looked into the 17-35 and it is excellent but the longer end would not be needed and the 17 is now as wide as the stellar 14-24. The filter issue is a concern but I like some of the DIY holders I've seen on the web for Coken filter which add some flexibility to linear GND filters that circular screw on filters lack. Any choice would be mere fantasy at this point. I had been planning on swapping the 85 1.4D for the G but after playing with the D on the D800, I am liking it a whole lot more. It gives an impression of a brand new lens for me even though it has been mostly sitting in my bag for 2 years with less than 300 shots through it. A couple lenses were great on the D7000 and great on the D800 but not dramatically different, such as the 24 1.4, or the 70-200VRI. Since I use the 70-200 mostly for people shots the darker corners are not a concern to me. I did get a chance to play with a 85 1.8G recently on both cameras and felt it was the sleeper of the group, DX or FX, it is really good and a bargain to boot. Stan St Petersburg Russia
#17. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 16
While we are on the topic... I have been playing with my lenses since my D800E arrived a couple of weeks ago and have noticed that a few of them doesn't seem to excel as I have expected. I am wondering if anyone have the same experience. Disappointments - 50mm 1.4D, 35-70mm 2.8D, 105mm 2.5 AIS Up to expectations - 17-35mm, 70-200mm VRI, 45mm PC-E, 24mm 2.8 AIS I am wondering if the new 50mm G (1.4 or 1.8) will be better... I too need a walk around light weight lens.
#21. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 19
I am not an expert but those lenses are just not "snappy" when compare with the others... Colour seems a little dull and edges are not crisp like the others. I understand that they are older lenses but they seem to look better on my D7000 than on the D800E.
#22. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
It is tough to say because all depending on your definition of walk around. For me, I always have 14-24 on my D700 (hoping to arrive D800E soon) as my walk around. When I travel, I carry 50 1.4g and 70-200 VR2 with it. As for 24-70, I use whenever I do portraits and weddings/events.
I am very sure that I would follow the same pattern when I have D800E.
On the other hand, many members here rave AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR claiming as good as 24-70.
#23. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 22
I also look at his as "depends were I'm going to walk" For a walk around lens I either take the 24-70 F/2.8 - as far as I'm concerned this is a fabulous lens, or the 24-120 f/4 which is also great - I recently acquired a re-furbished one and am impressed with it so far.
#24. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0 Sat 16-Jun-12 02:00 PM by RodW
Another vote for the 50mm. The gap between 35 and 70 is not that great. I went out tonight with my wife to visit her 1 yo grand daughter. I took my D800 and the 50 with me and liked the shots I got even if I did get annoyed about lack of zoom on a couple of shots. But really who cares when you have 36 mp?
Aside from this, consider the 24-70, new 24-120, 28-300 and maybe my old discontinued 24-85mm!
#25. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
I have found my 24-70mm an excellent all around lens for the D800. However, it is a bit like carrying around a lead brick when combined with the D800 body. After reading the posts here, I plan to pull my 50mm 1.8 out of the bag and start using it. I have always kept it as a backup lens for my 24-70mm. It may now get more use.
#26. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 25
Whilst on a very recent holiday in the Med, I wanted to travel reasonably light. So, instead of taking my D700 I took my D7000 with a Nikon 28-300mm and a 16-35mm. I have a 24-70mm and a 70-200mm, but it is heavy and the 16-35mm on a DX body allowed me to have the same wide angle as a 24-70. The 28-300mm (yes that understated lens again) traveled with me and did all the longer shots the 16-35mm couldn't.
It's been a great combination of lenses and camera body and I will be traveling with them again. Incidentally, I managed to get the two lens and the D7000 in a messenger camera bag, which when in Rome and Barcelona avoided attracting too much attention.
#27. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 26
Bearing in mind you want a walk around lens the 14-24 is not really that. I have it and it is a wonderful lens for the D800 but it is huge and stands out. I tend to use the 50mm f/1.4 lens as my walk around lens when travelling with my D800. I also tend to take the 24-120 to fill in gaps. I have a heap of good lenses but appreciate your need to have just s few things with you when walking about. I put my spare lens in a bag attached to my belt. As I have had people attempt to take stuff from my backpack in both Moscow and Athens I tend to leave my backpack in the hotel now. Ray
#30. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 29
Believe it or not, I've been using the Nikon 28-200mm f4.5-5.6G - out of necessity. Bought it used and in excellent condition. Although it was made for 35mm, is a little slow on AF in low light and lacks VR; however, it seems pretty sharp and has little distortion at most focal lengths. Another plus, it is light weight, has minimum focus distance of about 1.5 feet, and gives just a bit more reach. Chose it for now because of the expense and spotty availability of the pro glass. Meets my needs, but then I'm an amateur enthusiast and don't make my living at photography.
#32. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 0
The 24-70 is a pretty obvious choice to round out your kit - very good optically, fast, and it shares filters with the 16-35 and 70-200.
I also use the 50 f/1.4 as a walk around lens. While the 70-200 is great for tight people shots, the 50 f/1.4 does not attract attention. It is great in low light, light, small, and can be used inconspicuously.
The new version of the 50 f/1.4 is an AFS lens. AFS provides a little more flexibility for use with a V1 or other inexpensive cameras. The older version is just fine as well.
I like using the older version of the 50mm f/1.4 stopped down to f/2.8 or so if possible.
As far as macro work is concerned, extension tubes can easily turn the 50mm lens into a macro lens.
I have used the 16-35, 70-200, and 50 f/1.4 for a medium weight travel kit.
#34. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 32 Tue 19-Jun-12 06:51 PM by richardd300
<<I like using the older version of the 50mm f/1.4 stopped down to f/2.8 or so if possible>>
Eric, I have been deciding whether to, or not to buy, a 50mm for a long time. I have read many reviews and comparisons of both the 1.4 and 1.8 G or D versions. Many reviews seem to give the edge to the 1.8, others to the 1.4! Certainly many more give the edge to the 1.8 G, rather than the 1.4! I am assuming when you mean "old" you mean the "D" version?
Whats your opinion on these lenses please as I'm a bit confused especially as the various types have a wide price range, so I don't want to pay more for less.
#35. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 34 Tue 19-Jun-12 08:56 PM by ericbowles
I have the D version of the 50 f/1.4 - not the newer AFS G version.
Image quality of both f/1.4 D and f/1.8 D lenses is very good by the time you stop them down to f/3.2 or f/4. The advantage of the f/1.4 version is a half stop and an extremely shallow depth of field - great for low light or creative effect. While there may be some mixed reviews, neither is at it's sharpest wide open. You really need to stop down a full stop for the greatest sharpness with either copy. That means if you want to actually use a lens at f/1.8 or even f/2, the f/1.4 model is probably better. Now we are talking about two very good primes with relatively little difference - but the slight edge goes to the f/1.4 at the open end of the range. The other advantage of the f/1.4 is a little better bokeh - especially at the open end.
Part of the reason people prefer the f/1.8 version is value - it's a very inexpensive lens that performs well. I have a copy of the f/1.8 D and it is perfectly fine - but I prefer the f/1.4.
The new versions represent significant upgrades. While you have given up the aperture ring, both the 1.4 and the 1.8 models have been redesigned to be AFS lenses. The other big change was in the aperture blades - the f/1.8 lens kept the same number of blades but they are now rounded and the f/1.4 model went to 9 rounded blades from 7. Of course, the price of the new lenses went up significantly.
If you are just buying a light lens for occasional use, a used copy of the f/1.8 D should still be around $100. If money is tight but you want a very fast lens, the f/1.4 D is quite good. And if you want the latest and greatest - the new f/1.4 AFS G is a good option. In the $250 price range, I don't see a real advantage of the new f/1.8 AFS G over the older f/1.4 D unless AFS is critical. (edited to correct typo)
#38. "RE: Walk around lens advice for D800E" In response to Reply # 37
OK, actually there's not that much difference. You said <<the new f/1.4 AFS G is a good option in the $250 price range>> of course you meant $450. I almost started thinking about how someway I could get a US version.