Zoom lense mental...questions for the wise
Here is my dilema. I currently have a pristine Tokina 28-80mm f2.8 zoom lens. Build quality is great, but she is large and in charge making it not the ideal set up for weight or stealth. I have been debating selling this lens with the following lenses in mind. Nikon 28-105mm f3.5-4.5D, 50-135mm f3.5, 35-70mm f2.8 or maybe the 75-150mm f3.5. I have gone plain stupid with all the choices and was wondering if any of the wise folks out in Nikonians land could help sway me. Also, I am would be interested what your opinion of the lens optical quality would be between those mentioned and the Tokina I currently have. I really don't want to trade down in photo quality for weight or size.
Thanks in advance.
#4. "RE: Zoom lense mental...questions for the wise" | In response to Reply # 0jrp Charter MemberWed 16-Jan-08 11:53 AM
If you want stealth, a prime lens set is the best.
The 28-105 is a compact and convenient lens but not that small, not to mention the 35-70mm f/2.8D AF.
In that Tokina 28-80 what you have is a fast lens; the others mentioned, with the exception of the 35-70mm, are consumer lenses, meaning slower.
You have to decide between weight convenience or optical quality; if you want zooms that is the unavoidable trade off.
Below a shot of the Nikkor 28-80mm f/2.8D ED IF AF-S (taken with a 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5D IF AF, BTW)
Attachment#1 (jpg file)
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#1. "Fair enough" | In response to Reply # 4JustinH Registered since 24th Feb 2002Mon 08-Jul-02 09:44 PM
You are correct about unavoidable trade offs. This is the lens set I currently have:
24mm f2.8 AI
50mm f1.8 AIS
105mm f2.5 AI
180mm f2.8 ED-IFn
Tokina 28-80mm f2.8
I was thinking of travel situations and figuring I would take the 24mm, and what ever zoom I came up with, and a not yet purchased 85mm f1.8 or 85mm f1.4. I need a zoom of some fashion since my wife isn't always sensitive to my photography needs when they conflict with her travel agenda ("Just wait, this shot would look better at 105mm than 24mm...hold on, hold on. I'm coming.") . So I quess my real question is this: If I were willing to forsake some speed which of the above mentioned zooms (or any zoom in this general range) would have the best optical quality...and preferably not be 820g like my Tokina.
#2. "RE: Fair enough" | In response to Reply # 1jwb Basic MemberMon 08-Jul-02 10:15 PM
I had a Tokina 28-80/2.8 and sold it for a 28-105 Nikkor basically because of the weight/size. I really liked the Tokina, but for what I used it for, the lens was overkill. I primarily use the 28-105 as a family day outing lens - you know, snapshots I most likely won't enlarge - and it works great for these purposes. It is truly an amazing lens for the price. I do miss the 2.8 of the Tokina, but it was a trade-off I was willing to make. Don't expect it to be as sharp as your primes.
I have a complete set of primes I use for "my" shots - the ones I do for me that stand a good chance of getting enlarged. For what I use the 28-105 for, it is perfect. I should also say, that if I didn't have the primes and the zoom was my primary lens, I'd have kept the Tokina or gotten the 35-70/2.8 Nikkor or the 28-70 Silent Wave (mostly because of the lens speed).
#3. "RE: Fair enough" | In response to Reply # 1Keith_S Basic MemberTue 09-Jul-02 12:07 AM
Well, from what I gather from your post, you're looking for a lens that would allow for a fairly high degree of coverage and flexibility that you would use for a wide variety of photo ops while travelling... if that's a fair description of your needs, then I would make a couple of comments:
(1) if you plan on shooting buildings, monuments, and other architectural features outdoors during the daylight hours, then your highest priority wouldn't necessarily be having fast glass. In such situations, you're going to be stopping down quite a bit, which will also improve the sharpness of whatever lens you are using. At f/8 or smaller aperatures, any of the lenses you mention will be sharp enough for your purposes.
(2) if you plan on something more like street photography, once again you're probably going to be shooting in good light and stopping down to include lots of detail, so what I wrote above is again pertinent.
In either (1) or (2) you should find the 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 lens a good choice -- it's a really nice lens, although of course it's not particularly fast, and it's not a pro zoom. According to all of the reviews I've read, it's at least as sharp as your Tokina (better MTF scores) and at f/8 it is quite likely going to be sharp enough to make you happy, and the range might come in handy as well. I suspect you wouldn't mind not having to jug around a bunch of primes and then have to change lenses while your significant other is cooling her heels while waiting ever so patiently for you...
(3) if you think that you'll be wanting to take candid portraits of the locals, though, then fast glass becomes much more important so that you can shoot at wider aperatures in order to blur the background, so if this is more the sort of thing that you'll be wanting to do, either a fast zoom or a prime will be necessary and you might very well find the 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 to be somewhat limited. With the 28-105mm, shooting at 105mm and f/4.5 in order to get the best blurring of the background that the lens provides, your images are going to be softer and you probably still won't get the sort of background that you might like to have in order to make the subject really stand out.
At any rate, good luck with your decision!