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Author Topic: what kind of landsape gear?  (Read 5316 times)
zetra
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« on: April 15, 2010, 07:00:51 AM »
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Hi all,

Please can help with advice. I would like to buy the best gear for landscape shooting but my budget is limited only to buy for example

Canon EOS 5D II SLR + 24-70mm Kit

I could buy for that money a second hand (25 000 shots taken)
Canon 1 Ds MkI and to add a new lens like:
Canon EF 24mm f1.4L II USM, or
Zeiss 21mm f 2.8 T* Distagon

or

Canon EOS 1D MkIIN (11 000 shots taken)
and maybe Zeiss 18mm f 3.5 T* Distagon
or some other better wild lens.

or some other system?

For me is not easy to make a decision and I will appreciate any professional advice. Thanks a lot.




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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2010, 07:17:30 AM »
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Quote from: zetra
Please can help with advice. I would like to buy the best gear for landscape shooting but my budget is limited only to buy for example [...]

Depending on the type of landscape, I'd go for a high resolution camera. A full frame 24x36mm sensor would give the widest Field of View for a given focal length, and still have some tolerance with regards to the lens quality (high sensel density sensors require better optics). Whether you can afford a high quality wide angle lens depends on your budget and the need to go wide, as not all landscape photo's need to be wide angle shots. Also, lenses (especially with wide angle of view) with a slightly narrower aperture will be more affordable, and you probably are going to use the lens stopped down anyway to get more DOF. Remember that for a wide field of view you can also use an affordable 50mm lens and use stitching for resolution and Field of View.

Cheers,
Bart
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francois
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2010, 08:27:54 AM »
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I'd go for the 5D MK2 and 24-70. I still have a 1D Mark 2 but for landscape the 5D Mark 2 has more pixels, better high ISO, Live View etc...
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Francois
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2010, 11:22:38 AM »
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In my personal testing, the 5D Mark II had much better image quality than the original 1Ds Mark I, and also the 1D Mark IIn. I would buy the 5D2 and the 24-70 kit out of the choices you list.

You may eventually want to add a wider lens.
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zetra
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« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2010, 01:15:30 PM »
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What about Sony
Alpha A850 + 28-75mm Lens Kit

and if choose Canon 5d mk2 do you think that Zeiss 21mm f 2.8 T* Distagon will be better choice then 28-75 for the beginning?

Thanks all for your advices!
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2010, 01:34:17 PM »
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Hi,

The 28-75/2.8 is actually a Tamron design, and it is very good.

I would definitively opt for a an up to date camera like the 5DII or the Sony Alphas over old "professional" cameras. The 28-75/2.8 is a much more flexible lens than the 21/2.8. They should not be compared, the 21/2.8 is a single focal and pretty wide. The 28-75/2.8 is a general purpose lens and not nearly so wide.

I have some images published from my early testing, you may check: http://www.pbase.com/ekr/a900_test

Please go for "original" size for full images.

Best regards
Erik


Quote from: zetra
What about Sony
Alpha A850 + 28-75mm Lens Kit

and if choose Canon 5d mk2 do you think that Zeiss 21mm f 2.8 T* Distagon will be better choice then 28-75 for the beginning?

Thanks all for your advices!
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stever
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2010, 01:46:30 PM »
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i recommend the 5D2 (under no circumstances consider a camera without liveview), but for landscapes i wouldn't recommend the 24-70.  stopped down, the 24-105 is going to be as good, lighter and more useful as a walk-around lens, and cheaper.  But i'm not much of a fan of zooms for landscapes anyhow - some other possibilities - 50 1.4, 85 1.8, 100 2, 100macro.  the wide end is more difficult without spending money - ideally a Zeiss 28 or 35.
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fike
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2010, 03:33:50 PM »
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that combol with the 5D MkII and 24-70 would be excellent. I agree with the poster who said that the 24-105 is equal and lighter.  In landscape photography you really don't find yourself using f/2.8 very often.  The 24-105 is much lighter and more compact.  You are likely to want a wide angle lens too, so plan for that.  a 17-40 f/4.0 L or 16-35 would be good, but the 24-70 or 24-105 will be a great base setup to start with.
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Fike, Trailpixie, or Marc Shaffer
marcshaffer.net
TrailPixie.net

I carry an M43 ILC, a couple of good lenses, and a tripod.
tokengirl
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« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2010, 03:38:34 PM »
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I'm jumping on the 5DMkII bandwagon also.  I would pick the 16-35mm L II over the 24-70mm L, but I prefer the wide end of things.
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zetra
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« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2010, 04:10:13 PM »
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Quote from: stever
i recommend the 5D2 (under no circumstances consider a camera without liveview), but for landscapes i wouldn't recommend the 24-70.  stopped down, the 24-105 is going to be as good, lighter and more useful as a walk-around lens, and cheaper.  But i'm not much of a fan of zooms for landscapes anyhow - some other possibilities - 50 1.4, 85 1.8, 100 2, 100macro.  the wide end is more difficult without spending money - ideally a Zeiss 28 or 35.


If I choose Zeiss ZF (ZE) Distagon T* 28mm f/2  - not zooms then do you think that Pentax will be better choice because of Sensor shake system.
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k bennett
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« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2010, 05:57:52 PM »
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Is there a full frame Pentax? If not, the 1.5x crop factor will make that 28mm more of a "normal" focal length. You'll lose the wide angle view completely.

As for your other question, a 21mm lens on a full frame camera is very wide. I love shooting that wide, but it has all kinds of issues. I wouldn't buy a 21mm lens for my first and primary lens. I'd get a good mid-range zoom (and I too would prefer the 24-105/4 from Canon) and work with that for a while.

The Sony combo is also a good choice. Really, any decent camera and lens is capable of shooting terrific photos.
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Hening Bettermann
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« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2010, 08:53:55 PM »
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Hi

I would go for the 5D2 and Contax primes, they are cheap and better than zooms. I have used a Contax 28-80, it has considerable CA, and I am about replacing it by primes. - And landscape does not (necessarily) mean ultra wide angle.

Good light - Hening.
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stever
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« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2010, 12:05:39 AM »
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for landscapes you should be shooting from a tripod and lack of autofocus and image stabilization should not be an issue.  i don't see that there are many productive uses of wide apertures for landscapes - this severly reduces the advantage of the 16-35 over the 17-40 (which honestly has terrible corners and edges wider than about f8 at shorter focal lengths).

if i were just concentrating on landscapes and had the budget, it would be Zeiss 28, 50 makro planar, and 100 makro planar - but substituting  the Canon 50 1.4 and 80 1.8 or 100 2 will still out-perform zooms.  the only advantage of a zoom is that with one lens you get figure out whether you tend more to shood toward the long or short end - just don't expect the 24-105 to give quality results for landscapes longer than 70mm.

also keep in mind that with a good 50 or 100mm lens and RRS L-bracket you can shoot top-quality panos (reducing the need for a wide angle if there isn't significant movement in the image)
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2010, 12:18:20 AM »
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Hi,

I'm not familiar with Canon lenses, but the 24-105 is a good lens. Any decently made lens will be pretty good when stopped down to f/8.

I mostly use zooms and it is not really obvious to me that fixed focals would be significantly better, the way I use my lenses. One issue is that switching lenses can help getting more dirt in the camera, dust, metal fragments from the bayonet and so on. That is definitively a plus for zooms.

I carry quite a few lenses normally, a 24-70/2.8 zoom and an 80-200/2.8 (sometimes 70-300/4.5-5,6), I also carry a 50/1.4, a 100/2.8 and 20/2.8 prime. In addition I have a 400/4.5 with a couple of extenders and a Sigma 12-24/4.5-5.6. The primes see little use, except the telephoto and I'd probably use the macro for reproduction. The 20/2.8 is actually a quite good lens, despite it's age, I use it sometimes because the Sigma 12-24 is not terribly good. Having 12 mm on full frame gives some interesting perspective, on the other hand.

To my understanding, the Nikon 14-24/2.8 is the best wide angle zooms around. It seems to match the Zeiss 21/2.8 prime. Unfortunately the Nikon D3X is horribly expensive and Nikon does not have anything competing head on with the Canon 5DII or the Sony Alphas if you need more than 20 MPixels.

Best regards
Erik


Quote from: stever
i recommend the 5D2 (under no circumstances consider a camera without liveview), but for landscapes i wouldn't recommend the 24-70.  stopped down, the 24-105 is going to be as good, lighter and more useful as a walk-around lens, and cheaper.  But i'm not much of a fan of zooms for landscapes anyhow - some other possibilities - 50 1.4, 85 1.8, 100 2, 100macro.  the wide end is more difficult without spending money - ideally a Zeiss 28 or 35.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2010, 12:27:41 AM »
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Hi,

Would you go for the Canon you may consider the Zeiss 21/2.8, it is an excellent lens. You could also consider a Tamron 28-75/2.8 it has excellent reputation and a very reasonable price. Tamron has some issue with quality control so you should check your lens immediately after delivery. Other vendors also have quality issues, so if you buy anything try to test as soon as possible. Once you have a better feeling for your needs you can buy the L-lens you need.

I'm shooting with Sony Alpha 900 and I quite happy. Live view would be nice, I miss that!. My 400/4.5 with a 2X extender is very hard to focus manually, I guess that LV would be great help!

Best regards
Erik


Quote from: zetra
What about Sony
Alpha A850 + 28-75mm Lens Kit

and if choose Canon 5d mk2 do you think that Zeiss 21mm f 2.8 T* Distagon will be better choice then 28-75 for the beginning?

Thanks all for your advices!
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #15 on: April 16, 2010, 01:56:21 AM »
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Though it appears you're most likely going to be lost in the digital community there are some interesting alternatives,
especially for landscape.

1.) Get a used view camera or a Mamiya Press like camera, a scanner and shoot 4x5'' or some high resolution roll film 6x9cm.
2.) Like 1.) but with 35 mm, e.g. get a Zeiss Ikon, shoot b/w 35 mm, use high resolution film (E.G. Rollei ATP 2.1) and a scanner.

Its a completely different kind of working, of course, but for non-moving objects like landscapes definitely worth a thought.
I doubt, that many digital files will survive 25+ years ...
I doubt, that the fast digital workflow and the low cost on the single image really are important or help with landscape work.
The tool you use with have an influence in the way your are taking pictures ...

Film+scanner is the cheapest way to get a 50 - 100  Megapixel Camera ....  
« Last Edit: April 16, 2010, 01:58:49 AM by ChristophC » Logged

Hening Bettermann
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« Reply #16 on: April 16, 2010, 05:22:35 AM »
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Quote from: stever
if i were just concentrating on landscapes and had the budget, it would be Zeiss 28, 50 makro planar, and 100 makro planar

stever, Would you take makro lenses for landscape?? Can you point to any comparative test with infinity lenses  of the same focal lenght?

Hening.
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JohnBrew
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« Reply #17 on: April 16, 2010, 07:15:12 AM »
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Here's an example of a Zeiss 50 makro planar, D700, stitched.
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zetra
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« Reply #18 on: April 16, 2010, 08:29:13 AM »
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And here is my last question – Would you prefer Nikon D700 + 14–24 instead of Canon 5D II + etc.?
Do you think that the higher Low ISO of D700 is a weakness, compare to Canon 5 D II? Otherwise according  to DXO Nikon has higher Dynamics then Canon 5d but start from ISO 200?

Thank you folks for you patience,

and may the Lord bless you richly!
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stever
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« Reply #19 on: April 16, 2010, 10:31:49 AM »
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Hening, in general i wouldn't hesitate to use Macro lenses for landscapes.  I have used the Canon 100M and the new 100IS for some 6 to 8 panel vertical panos and the 5D2 with good results.  Lloyd Chambers has extensively tested the Zeiss Makro Planars at all focus distances with no issues and superb results.  Although the Zeiss lenses are better, i'm staying with Canon for now as the 100IS is more usefull all round with autofocus, IS, 1:1 capability, and internal focusing (and price).  

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