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Author Topic: What's the next lens to buy when hiking? 5DmkII and 24-105L now  (Read 10693 times)
katsucurry
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« on: January 02, 2009, 02:13:48 AM »
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Hi there. I've been reading this forum for a while and used the search feature but I'm still not sure which lens I should buy next so here's my first posting.

I have a Canon 5D Mark II and the kit lens 24-105 4L.  I'm thinking about doing more light hiking(nothing serious...just 3,4  hours hike) this year and thought what most people would buy next when they go hiking.

I was thinking about the following lenses.

1) Canon 16-35 2.8L II
2) Canon 17-40 4L

or if telephoto is the one I should get first then,

3)70-200 IS 2.8L (heard that it's good for portraiture and indoors)
4)70-200 IS 4L  (much lighter, super sharp, less expensive)

What would you guys recommend. Get the wide first or the telephoto?
If I were to get both at the same time, what would you prefer?

I don't think I'll get a macro lens yet.
I don't think I'll be taking early sunrise photos and even if I did, will F4 be fast enough?
I don't think I'll be shooting indoor sports although I would be taking photos at indoor parties(so maybe 2.8 is better?) and I love tennis so I'll be taking
photos of tennis at U.S. Open etc.(but that's day time although it may be cloudy. Is F4 fast enough?)

Any other information regarding how to carry gears for light hiking would be appreciated as well.
(Backpack, slingbag, trek/monopod, tripod suggestions, gear suggestions)

Sorry for asking too many things in one posting but any advice would be greatly appreciated.
(p.s. English is not my first language so sorry if there are any grammatical  mistakes, etc. You can correct me so I can learn  )

I also thought about 100-400 Canon zoom but for now, I think a 70-200 with a 1.4 telecon might be more useful for my situation(thinking about other things other than hiking).

Thanks!
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 02:16:25 AM by katsucurry » Logged
k bennett
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« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2009, 09:22:00 AM »
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For serious outdoor photography, you'll need a solid tripod first and foremost. Shooting good landscape photos (including sunrise/sunset) requires it. Expect to spend between $400 and $1200US on a tripod and head. Search this forum for more information.

After that, your next lens choice really depends on your style of outdoor photography. Given that you are already covered down to 24mm with your current lens, I'd go for the 70-200. (Get the f/4 IS version for outdoor photography -- it's lighter and smaller.) As an alternative to the 16-35, you might look at the Sigma 12-24mm lens. I use this for architectural photography. It's very sharp and well corrected, though it works best at f/11 or f/16 (so you *really* need the tripod.) Not sure how well it will work on the 5D Mark II, but I got some nice results with it on a 1Ds Mark III last summer.

For your other photography needs, the f/4 lenses should be adequate. It's only a one-stop difference -- just boost your ISO a stop and you'll have the same shutter speed.

Your English is fine. Good luck with your photography.
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Equipment: a camera and some lenses.
BradSmith
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« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2009, 10:49:55 AM »
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If it were me, I'd get the 70-200 is f4 L.  For my my style of landscape photography, I take many more images longer than 105 mm  than I do wider than 24 mm.  
Brad
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dseelig
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« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2009, 11:40:25 AM »
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It seems like your first instinct is a wide angle so go wide I would get the 16-35 over the 17-40 it is sharper. As a hiker when you do go tele the 70-200 f4 is without peer in sharpness. However in bad light tennis it is always nice to have a 2.8 that said the 5d mk 11 is not really a ports camera. The auto focus in bad light is not up to snuff. I shoot pro sports. I would eventually get a 1d series camera if you want to shoot sports. Happy shooting David
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 11:46:02 AM by dseelig » Logged
JeffKohn
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« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2009, 11:48:20 AM »
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Seems to me the 16-35 and 70-200 f/4 make  the most sense. On the wideangle side, the size difference is not so great and you're not only getting a sharper, faster lens but also an extra millimeter FOV (which is more than you might think at the wide end). On the telephoto end, the f/4 lens offers a substantial savings of size/weight and by some accounts is the sharper lens.

As far as which to get first, I think only you can answer that. When you're out shooting with your 24-105, do you find yourself sometimes wishing for a longer lens, or a shorter one?
« Last Edit: January 02, 2009, 11:49:04 AM by JeffKohn » Logged

Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2009, 12:14:28 PM »
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There are so many compromises to be made with camera gear I think you need to be really clear about your needs.  Is the aim of the 'hike' to get out and have a good walk to some interesting places, and if the opportunity arises, to take some pictures.  Or is it a dedicated photo-trek, where getting the best possible pictures is priority, and physical discomfort a secondary consideration.
Carrying a 5D, a 24-105, a 70-200 and a meaningful tripod for those lenses, is going to be very heavy on a three hour walk (particularly the 70-200 f2.Cool.  If you are set on using the 5D for this type of trip, my own choice would be a couple of primes, say 50mm and 28mm, plus the 70-300 IS lens.

Alternatively, for hiking, you could consider buying a much more portable system, for about the same cost as one lens for the 5D.  I have just aquired one of the Panasonic G1 cameras with both lenses. The 28-90 and the 90-400 (35mm equivalent).  The image quality appears to be excellent, and the whole kit is very lightweight too.

Just a thought!
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David Sutton
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« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2009, 03:49:32 PM »
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I have the 24-105 and 70-200 f4 on my 40D. The F2.8 would be too heavy for me to carry for long. They pretty well cover my needs. As previous posters have pointed out, do you regularly find yourself wanting more or less reach? For hiking less than 2 hours I use a Lowepro slingshot 100 (see http://luminous-landscape.com/forum/index....;hl=bag+hacking on how to fit them in) and carry the tripod and for longer than about 2hrs use a backpack.
A ball head and L plate for the tripod are handy. I use a Markins Q3 and RRS L plate. You'll wonder how you did without them.
For macro I have a 72mm Canon 500D close up lens with a step down ring to fit on the 70-200. The results on this lens are dead sharp, but a tripod is helpful due to the small depth of field, though I have got some good butterfly shots hand held. Hope this helps, David
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maxgruzen
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« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2009, 04:04:04 PM »
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You already own a fabulous camera and lens. Photography is about taking pictures, not gear. You should be asking questions about taking pictures, not "what should I buy next". Take what you have and start shooting, after a period of time YOU will know what you what to buy next. You will not have to ask others who know nothing about you and your photography.
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pete_truman
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« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2009, 05:11:47 PM »
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I used to go walking with the 5D, 16-35, 24-105 and 70-200mm lenses, a tripod, filters and all sorts of other equipment. Having reviewed hundreds of the pictures I took I found (no surprise!) that I very rarely used any of the extra bits and pieces for anything that couldn't be captured by walking a bit further. OK, very simplistic but the number of times I needed a longer or wider lens was very few indeed. Much more likely I would be in the right place but at the wrong time to get decent light so would need to come back anyway.

Now I almost always take only a camera, 24-105mm lens, a polarising filter, a couple of CF cards and a spare camera battery reducing the load enormously. I now walk further and have many more interesting pictures as I only have a few variables to worry about.

There are occasions when I do take other equipment but this will be for a specific purpose. If I plan to be out at sunrise or sunset or to capture the shot in better light I will take a tripod, either a big Manfrotto or, if going a long way on foot, a Gitzo Traveller 1550T (not designed for such a big camera/lens but works fine with a 5D with care and weighs practically nothing). I might also add the ND grad filters and the 16-35mm wide angle lens. Often a 50mm f1.4 lens does get dropped in the bag as it is a lens I just love using. If I think I will need a longer lens I use the 70-200mm f2.8 IS, a fantastic lens but heavy and I may still buy a 70-200 f4 IS to carry.

I carry these few bits in a 25 litre Lowe Alpine day-sack rather than a photo backback. I find they tend to be better designed for long distances and walking up and down hills.

As the previous post suggests we tend to pack lots of equipment thinking it might come in handy rather than thinking about the photograph. Reducing the amount of clutter will I believe help you make better pictures. You will know when you need a longer or wider lens though.

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Pete Truman
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« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2009, 05:33:16 PM »
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What pete_truman said. That's me, exactly! If you stick with your 5DII and 24-105, you can use the incredible Slingpack (the medium one - 200AW). Add just one more lens to that pack, and it gets too heavy. If you really want to carry a long lens (for birds, for example), I would go with the 70-200 F4. I have the 2.8 version and rarely want to hike with it, because it is too heavy.

If you do want to carry a tripod around, check out the Lowepro Fastpack. I have one, and it works pretty well.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2009, 02:10:52 PM by JDClements » Logged

katsucurry
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« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2009, 10:45:47 PM »
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Wow! Thank you so much for the great tips and suggestions! I'm so glad I posted here and you guys are all nice! Really nice!  My first posting on a camera forum : )

I see. I totally understand what Max says too. If I shoot more I should know what I need.

Looks like no one carries a 2.8 70-200, well I should rephrase that; Most people recommend the 70-200mm in F/4 considering the weight and sharpness(in some F stop), etc(and I think I read somewhere that you can get closer with the f/4 than with f/2.8 too!)

I also understood that carry all the lenses I mentioned wears most people out too and  I should get the least equipment possible as it seems I don't need 'everything' : )
I'm a techie guy and I love gadgets and things like these but as some of you asked, my hiking will be to go out and enjoy the hike and if I see something I'd like to shoot, then I would take that photo. Most of my hike will be like this and not going hiking for the main purpose of getting really nice photos(phototrekking), at least for now. Who knows, if I really get into it, I may wake up early and go get those awesome sunrise shots, etc

Thanks again for all your help and thanks for all the past postings too as I learned and am still learning a lot from reading them!
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fike
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« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2009, 08:35:53 PM »
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I do a lot of long day-hikes (8-12 miles) with a moderate-weight kit.

50D
24-70 f/2.8 L
100-400 f/4.5-5.6 L
1.4x tele
500d macro filter
Gitzo traveller tripod
Really Right Stuff Spherical pano setup
miscellaneous little photo junk

I put all that gear (minus the tripod) into a Thinktank Urban Disguise 30 and then inside an Osprey internal frame day and a half backpack.  I am firmly of the opinion that most camera backpacks really are inadequate for longer distances/time hiking and with the right pack, much more weight can be carried for a longer time with less fatigue.  Photo backpacks are generally designed for the airport or getting from the car to the overlook 100 meters away.  Go to an outdoor store and look at day and a half packs.  Make sure to try them on with your gear in them. If you go to a good store, the staff will understand and help.

As for the longer lens, I would not get the 70-200 f/4.  I  had that in my kit and its reach wasn't really substantial enough to be a real dramatic tool in my kit.  I could frequently cover the range with my feet. the 100-400, on the other hand, is not too terribly heavy and far more flexible.  With your 24-105 and a 100-400, you would have a huge range to work with. Consider shooting panoramics to help you cover the wide angle range that you are lacking.  

As other said, the gear is somewhat secondary.  Make sure to have fun first.  In my opinion, this means you should pay great care to your comfort, particularly how you haul your gear.  Get the right pack and make sure your tripod is light, and your hikes will be longer, more fun and much more productive from a photographic point of view.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2009, 08:36:21 PM by fike » Logged

Fike, Trailpixie, or Marc Shaffer
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I carry an M43 ILC, a couple of good lenses, and a tripod.
Adam Schallau
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« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2009, 11:22:22 PM »
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My current light-weight setup is a 5D Mark II, 24-105 and 70-200/4L IS, carried in a Lowepro Flipside 300. I think you'll get more use out of the 70-200 than an ultra-wide, especially since you are already covered down to 24mm. As for packs I've got several (don't we all) including both the Slingshot 200 and the Flipside 300. They both have their strengths and weaknesses, but I feel that the Flipside wins when it comes to hiking since it will support a small tripod and waterbottle, but I love the Slingshot for shooting around town and when traveling for it's quick access.
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Adam Schallau
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2009, 03:18:36 AM »
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I love the 70-200mm f/4  super great lens. Works very well with the 2x extender too if you need longer but want to save weight.     But I don't like the 17-40 or 16-35.    I use an old Olympus 28mm zuiko with an adapter for my light travel wide lens.  Great optic. The old Olympus lenses are fantastic and quite small and lightweight which makes them perfect for hikes and other kinds of travel.    I also use a variety of leica lenses on my 5D for wide angle work.  I happen to like the 24mm elmarit the most, but others will recommend the 28 first.  You can use the 21-35mm leica zoom if you remove the rear rubber shroud.
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katsucurry
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« Reply #14 on: January 04, 2009, 03:37:50 AM »
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Thank you so so much again to all of you!

I'm getting to know the gears and setup others are using!
As some of you mentioned, I do understand that, I will find for myself what I need after shooting more and that the equipment needs will
differ individually but I'm getting good ideas reading all of the replies/suggestions from you all.

Thanks again!
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NigelC
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« Reply #15 on: January 05, 2009, 04:42:23 AM »
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Quote from: k bennett
For serious outdoor photography, you'll need a solid tripod first and foremost. Shooting good landscape photos (including sunrise/sunset) requires it. Expect to spend between $400 and $1200US on a tripod and head. Search this forum for more information.

After that, your next lens choice really depends on your style of outdoor photography. Given that you are already covered down to 24mm with your current lens, I'd go for the 70-200. (Get the f/4 IS version for outdoor photography -- it's lighter and smaller.) As an alternative to the 16-35, you might look at the Sigma 12-24mm lens. I use this for architectural photography. It's very sharp and well corrected, though it works best at f/11 or f/16 (so you *really* need the tripod.) Not sure how well it will work on the 5D Mark II, but I got some nice results with it on a 1Ds Mark III last summer.

For your other photography needs, the f/4 lenses should be adequate. It's only a one-stop difference -- just boost your ISO a stop and you'll have the same shutter speed.

Your English is fine. Good luck with your photography.

Depends what sort of hiking you do? If you are camping wild you'll be looking to get weight right down when you take into account tent, sleeping bag, thermarest, cooking gear, food, change of clothes, ice axe, crampons (you never know in Scotland) water etc - I count every gram - my tent weighs 0.86 kilos. F4 - doesn't matter - you'll be using a tripod at sunrise/sunset, but if you can carry an 800 tripod you must be a donkey. I find 5D, 17-40 and 70-200 F4 IS is best compromise - leave 24-105 and 1.4X at home.Have been seriously considering leaving the 5D at home next time and just taking LX3,as I now also have to carry dog food
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sojournerphoto
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« Reply #16 on: January 05, 2009, 04:55:15 AM »
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Quote from: NigelC
Depends what sort of hiking you do? If you are camping wild you'll be looking to get weight right down when you take into account tent, sleeping bag, thermarest, cooking gear, food, change of clothes, ice axe, crampons (you never know in Scotland) water etc - I count every gram - my tent weighs 0.86 kilos.


My really light weight kit is a Ricoh GX100, and my slightly bigger kit is a Zeiss Ikon, a roll of film and either a 35 or 50 lens. Both much smaller and lighter than the dslrs, which I take if I have need for their abilities.

Mike
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katsucurry
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« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2009, 04:50:17 PM »
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Update:

Hi! It's been a couple of months since I posted this and like some of the posters said, I realized what kind of things I needed and here's what I bought:

Gitzo 1541T Traveller Tripod
Markins Q3T Head
RRS B2 LR II: 60mm LR clamp with dual mount

Canon 16-35 2.8L
Canon 85mm 1.2L

I'm now looking whether I should get the 70-300IS, 70-300 DO, 70-200 F4 ISL, 70-200 2.8L or 100-400L....

Leaning towards 70-200 F4 IS L + 1.4TC.....

Thanks for all the help with the recommendations, suggestions to a total newbie : )
I have learned a lot reading the postings.
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marcmccalmont
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« Reply #18 on: July 09, 2009, 11:57:10 PM »
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I would get the 70-200 f4 IS next, then with your travel tripod and ball head you can always stitch a pano for a wider field of view.  I rarely take a wide angle lens with me. If I do it is the Nikkor 14-24 2.8 with a 16-9 lever adapter. better than the Canon wide zooms.
Marc
« Last Edit: July 10, 2009, 12:14:27 AM by marcmccalmont » Logged

Marc McCalmont
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« Reply #19 on: July 10, 2009, 12:11:04 AM »
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I'm a little disappointed in my Nikkor 12-24.  It's just not much of a lens for the buxx.  My wife picked up the Sigma 10-20 for half the price, and it's twice the lens.  Much more contrasty, better color rendition and IIRC, lighter.  Seems funny but the extra coverage being a 10 rather than a 12 at the low end is significant.  I don't know the Canon line, but I have to believe it's available with a Canon mount, too.  Not saying the Canon lenses under discussion aren't great lenses, but in my landscape uses something wider than 16mm is welcome.  And I don't read pixel peeper charts, but it's hard to imagine that they turn out significantly better image quality, if at all.  The Sigma is a whole lot of lens for the comparatively low price.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2009, 12:12:00 AM by Hank » Logged
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