Get 50% off Adobe CC Photography plan with any X-Rite ColorChecker Photo product!

Nikon lens choice - advice needed!


djpeanut 13 13
28 Feb 2007 4:53PM
Hi all, my first post so a bit about myself - I'm a keen DSLR hobbyist and I'm setting off to bike (that is mountain-bike, pedal, etc) round the world in a few months' time. I guess I'll be on the road for 4-5 years. I'm taking my fairly new Nikon D50 (and a bag of SD cards) but I'm no expert when it comes to choosing a lens.

My main criteria. I already have a Sigma 70-300mm telephoto zoom that takes shots I'm very happy with. What I now need is something to fill the wide-standard range. I'd really want something designed for digital so I don't have the 1.5x magnification problem. Taking loads of landscape shots is on the cards, and I want something wide-angled to get the pictures I like - big skies, huge vistas, but also foreground interest, as I find this helps set off the scale of many landscape shots. So I'm thinking something starting at 18mm or even wider, but I'd like to zoom up to 50mm or possibly a bit more... I can probably live without the few tens of mm between that and my tele lens.

It's got to be fairly durable as it'll be on the road with me daily. My budget is 300-350.

Can anyone recommend some lenses that satisfy those criteria? I know that there are a few out there, but knowing which will give me the best image quality isn't easy. Any other thoughts would be appreciated. (Other than the ones saying I won't get anything decent for less than a grand - the Sigma cost me 65)

Thanks in advance!

Join ePHOTOzine for free and remove these adverts.

sillyconguru 15 4.4k
28 Feb 2007 5:34PM

Quote:I'd really want something designed for digital so I don't have the 1.5x magnification problem.


LOL!!
afunkyname 13 354
28 Feb 2007 5:43PM

Quote:I'd really want something designed for digital so I don't have the 1.5x magnification problem


get a canon 1ds mark2 or 5d.
strawman 16 22.1k 16 United Kingdom
28 Feb 2007 5:46PM
Sigma 18-50, two versions one @ 70, and an EX version @ 230. the ex feels better, is faster and has a non-rotating front. The other one is not too bad a design for a low cost lens, but has a rotating front element.

Nikons own 17-70 must be worth a thought. The there is Sigma's own 17-70. Confusing huh.
takui neko 16 849 11 Spain
28 Feb 2007 5:47PM
I'd buy the nikon 18-70 for 200 (or 150 secondhand)
cameracat 16 8.6k 61 Norfolk Island
28 Feb 2007 5:54PM
Second vote for the Nikon 18-70 DX ED, I think they are under 200 at the Ephotozine shop, Should go the distance and many Nikon owners swear by them on a bang for bucks ratio.
djpeanut 13 13
28 Feb 2007 7:27PM
What are the first two replies about... go and fiddle with yourselves somewhere...

The Sigma 18-50 EX looks like a good buy. The Nikon 18-70 DX ED also looks like a good value lens, but does it not perform as a 27-105mm lens on a DSLR?

Cheers.
sillyconguru 15 4.4k
28 Feb 2007 8:19PM

Quote:go and fiddle with yourselves somewhere...


Wow! Are you psychic?


Quote:The Nikon 18-70 DX ED also looks like a good value lens, but does it not perform as a 27-105mm lens on a DSLR?


It'll perform like a 18-70mm lens (because that is what it is), it will offer a field of view similar to that of a 28-105mm lens on a 35mm camera though.
strawman 16 22.1k 16 United Kingdom
28 Feb 2007 9:32PM
The crop or multiplication factor of 1.5x you refer to applies to all lenses. What are referred to as designed for digital lenses are often just ones optimised for the crop sensor size.

So if you want an equivalent field of view to a 17mm lens on a film camera you need to get a 10mm lens for example.

SCG and the second post are true. If you want the same performance from you lenses on film or digital you need to throw away your Nikon stuff and get a Canon 5D or 1DS as their sensor are the same size as a 35mm negative.
djpeanut 13 13
28 Feb 2007 10:50PM
OK, thanks for clearing that up.


Quote:SCG and the second post are true. If you want the same performance from you lenses on film or digital you need to throw away your Nikon stuff and get a Canon 5D or 1DS as their sensor are the same size as a 35mm negative.


Not going to happen, really. So are there any lenses that would give the DSLR equivalent FOV of a 18-50mm lens on a 35mm?

Sounds like I'm better off taking the old F75 with me...
strawman 16 22.1k 16 United Kingdom
28 Feb 2007 10:56PM
The Sigma 10-20 gives you the equivalent of 15 to 30mm. But what film lenses do you use now, as there are not many that start at 17mm (canons 17-40L springs to mind, no use for you).

Just get a 17 to 70. its the equivalent of a 28mm up lens and to be honest if you are not using a 17mm lens on your film camera do you need the extra?
djpeanut 13 13
1 Mar 2007 9:22AM
I'm using an old manual-focus Nikon 20mm lens on my film camera - it's great for experimenting with wide-angle stuff. But it gives 30mm equivalent on the D50 which is a little too restrictive for me, and I want something that I can pick up and shoot quickly with if need be. I might well go for the 10-20mm, as 17-70 probably won't give me the wide-angle FOV I'm after.
SteveCharles 17 2.3k 18 England
1 Mar 2007 10:08AM
The Sigma 10-20 is probably the best lens you can get, in your budget, to give you the wide angle you want. It is a very good lens, and available some places new for under 300.

The Nikon 18-70 is also very good as a standard zoom. But if you want to keep your kit to a minimum, and envisage using the wide more than a standard zoom, consider a kit comprising Sigma 10-20mm, Nikon 50mm f1.8 prime, and perhaps your 70-300mm for longer shots. The 50mm 1.8 makes a great short telephoto on digital, good for low light/shallow DOF, and is about 100 new or 50-60 secondhand.

Since getting the 10-20, I find myself switching between that and the 50mm more and more and using the 18-70 less and less.
djpeanut 13 13
1 Mar 2007 10:57AM
You're the second person to recommend the Nikon 50mm 1.8f for exceptional image quality. The FOV should be fine for short telephoto as you say. I'm considering getting that and the 10-20mm and doing away with the 70-300mm as I'll probably only use it now and again, and it's going to be a dead weight for the rest of the time - weight I can't afford to waste on my bike!

Cheers!
MikeBonsall 14 474 3 Guernsey
1 Mar 2007 11:09AM
taking a 50mm 1.8 prime with you is a great idea. It's lightweight so when you're not using it you won't notice it (important when you're doing what you're doing).

It really will come into it's own in low light situations. I've done a fair bit of travelling and would suggest that some of the most atmospheric and rewarding images are to be found in places where the light levels are low (street markets at night, inside houses and shops etc etc. Just the kind of places where using a flash would kill the atmosphere).

Mike

Sign In

You must be a member to leave a comment.

ePHOTOzine, the web's friendliest photography community.

Join For Free

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more.