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Archive 2012 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]
  
 
DizzelDel
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p.1 #1 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


with fall semester comes internship season, right now im working the L series f4 line. 17-40, 70-200, and a 50 F1.4. i only have the cash to upgrade one of my lenses.

option 1 sell 17-40 and get a used 24-70 F2.8
option 2 sell 17-40 and get used 24-105 F4
option 3 sell the 70-200 f4 and get a used 70-200 F2.8

My main question is, how limiting will i find the F4 at 24-105 focal lengths vs F4 and 70-200 focal lengths? also would having the 24-70 F2.8 take the worry of switching the fast 50mm on and off all the time? I could keep the 24-70 on much more. as a PJ intern i dont wanna be switching lenses all the time.

Thx guys!



Jul 25, 2012 at 06:42 AM
Ian.Dobinson
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p.1 #2 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


as much as I like my 24-105 I would think for PJ work the stop faster beats the IS and F4 any day.

standard PJ setup seems to be the 2.8 set of zooms .
and I may be wrong but whenever I see PJ's at work a prime 50 never seems to be on the camera



Jul 25, 2012 at 07:01 AM
Ralph Conway
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p.1 #3 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


What is your body (how far you can go in using high ISO)? Do you feel your current F4.0 setup as a restriction?

Ralph



Jul 25, 2012 at 08:09 AM
DizzelDel
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p.1 #4 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


I shoot a 5D ii. So I would be ok at F4. My concern is more of boekh for those PJ style shots.


Jul 25, 2012 at 03:12 PM
DizzelDel
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p.1 #5 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Ian.Dobinson wrote:
as much as I like my 24-105 I would think for PJ work the stop faster beats the IS and F4 any day.

standard PJ setup seems to be the 2.8 set of zooms .
and I may be wrong but whenever I see PJ's at work a prime 50 never seems to be on the camera


i get a ton of mileage from my fast 50. Half of my portfolio is shoots taken from it. One staff photographer I know shoots a prefers primes and shoots a 28, 50, and 70-200 F2.8



Jul 25, 2012 at 03:15 PM
jolson72
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p.1 #6 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


How about keeping the lenses you have and adding a fast telephoto... either a 85/1.8 or 135/2? Neither is terribly expensive.... add a 35/1.4 in the future and I think you should be happy...

I have the 70 - 200/ 2.8, and it is a great lens, but I usually use it at f/3.5 or f/4 for sharpness, so why not just use the 70 - 200 f/4 you have and add a lens?



Jul 25, 2012 at 03:49 PM
Kenneth Farver
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p.1 #7 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


I use my 24-105 on my 5D2 at 5000 ISO every day and never see any noise in the printed photos for the newspaper. I would agree on the 85mm F1.8 and it's always nice to have an F1.4 prime. Especially the 35mm one.


Jul 25, 2012 at 04:05 PM
OntheRez
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p.1 #8 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Dizzel,

As a working PJ (for an admittedly very small paper), the key questions about lens choice turn on: (1) How much light is normal or reasonably expected? (2) How close to your subject(s) are you likely to get? (3) How much action are you going to experience?

I shoot everything from seniors getting awards (close, no action, reasonable light) to the local HS sports, (reach, lousy light, all action).

A 5DII would not be my first choice for this type of work. Yes, it can create a fine image but really falls down in rough and tumble work. I've also not been impressed with its AF. If you're working in Wilkes Barre I'd guess you won't encounter a photog scrum or any such thing, but it is amazing how much bumping around goes on just trying to comply with simple things like "Mrs. Aragon receiving the garden of the month award."

If you could do a lateral move from the 5DII to a nice used 7D, you'd probably be lot happier. Don't know if that is possible, but current used prices suggest you could do it.

As for lenses, as Ian and other have noted, nothing beats more light - when you need it. And given that Murphy's Laws are immutable, the time you most need it is when you won't have it. Excluding sports, my lens use is 24-70 f/2.8L, 70-200 f/2.8L, 85 f/1.8, 50 f1/4. The first 2 lenses probably do 80% of the work. I'd have to run a find on my Aperture database to give real numbers, but I think this is within a few percentage points. (Sports work is a whole nother bottle of worms, but it doesn't sound like that's what you're doing.)

I'd say your decision is between the 24-70 and the 70-200. Don't know the condition or anything of your gear, but if you could sell both the 17-40 and the 70-200 you might be able to swing an older 24-70 and a NON IS 70-200. I took 10,000s of pix with my old non-IS 70-200 and it's as good a lens as the newer fancier IS models. (The IS is d*mn useful with still objects in bad light, OTH.)

In general I work with the camera (in my case a used 1DIV) mounted with either the 24-70 or the 70-200 in a CottonCarrier with the second lens in a belt pouch. I also keep a 50 f/1.4 in my pocket cause it is often the lens of last resort. Sometimes, ya just don't have the light.

Two observations from my experience that aren't gear related: (1) The ability to interact with your subjects is often the difference between just another VFW old foggy shot and something that really engages the viewer. Learning to talk with, enjoy, listen to, interact, etc. is priceless. The second is positioning. If I have any control over how a person or group shot is going down I look for the best possible backgrounds/light/reveal of things involved.

These 2 skills take a lot of practice and I'm still learning. As for nice boekh (however it is spelled), I hate to break this to you but editors are crude, rude, tasteless thugs who will destroy any beauty or artistic value you might perceive a shot to have. Plus they will chop, crop, and hack anything to fit column size. (I am not exaggerating.) Actually good editors have made me a much more focused and precise photographer, but I butt heads with mine real regular. (Actually I think she looks forward to jousting with me cause it's always interesting and occasionally loud.) Just remember, the editor always wins, so don't get too invested in your shots.

In a nutshell, pick the 24-70 first. If you can do the double swap add an older 2.8 70-200, and finally I wouldn't pick the 5DII as a PJ cam. You might find it okay for you or not be able to do anything about it, but if you really want to pursue this ill-paid, relatively thankless, and perhaps dying art, then start looking for the newest 1Dxx you can afford.

You're going to have a blast. Wish I'd have had a chance to "intern." Everything I know I learned by making mistakes. (Oh, always take more shots than you think you need - ya never know.)

Robert
Ajo CuNews



Jul 25, 2012 at 04:35 PM
Steady Hand
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p.1 #9 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


OntheRez wrote:
Dizzel,

As a working PJ (for an admittedly very small paper), the key questions about lens choice turn on: (1) How much light is normal or reasonably expected? (2) How close to your subject(s) are you likely to get? (3) How much action are you going to experience?

CLIPED HERE

Robert
Ajo CuNews


Very good advice and well written.

My Suggestion: Go Prime and FAST.

But...given that your subjects may change as an intern....I think a fast WIDE prime for "in your face" photos and a fast 70-200mm (for sports, and such) would be the choice.



Jul 25, 2012 at 05:19 PM
JimmyJames
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p.1 #10 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Often overlooked is the older 28-70 f2.8L is a fine lens and can be had for a modest price. I heavily use mine all the time.


Jul 25, 2012 at 05:28 PM
 

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Deborah Kolt
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p.1 #11 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


A lot depends on what your editor prefers. Mine, who are lovely people with good eyes and an appreciation for a beautiful photo, really want tight shots, and told me this up front. When I go wide to give them an alternative, they will 98% of the time go with the tight shot. As a result, my 70-200 2.8 gets the most use for non-sports assignments. Occasionally, if I can't get back far enough, it's ridiculously dark, or I have to do a group shot, I may use a prime usually 50L or 35L.

If I'm going to a new location, I usually have the 24-70 brick in my bag, and occasionally use that. I used to use the 24-105 a fair amount. Initially, I loved it for its lighter weight, sharpness and the flexibility of the extra reach. With time, however, I became mildly disgruntled about its color rendition. Compared to the 24-70, it tends to render a bit yellow, and printing on newsprint has a bit of that cast anyway. Rather than having to correct for it each time, I went back to the 24-70 or the 16-35.

Sports is long, longer, longest.

It pays to ask about your editor's preferred style.




Jul 25, 2012 at 05:29 PM
DizzelDel
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p.1 #12 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


OntheRez wrote:
Dizzel,

As a working PJ (for an admittedly very small paper), the key questions about lens choice turn on: (1) How much light is normal or reasonably expected? (2) How close to your subject(s) are you likely to get? (3) How much action are you going to experience?

I shoot everything from seniors getting awards (close, no action, reasonable light) to the local HS sports, (reach, lousy light, all action).

A 5DII would not be my first choice for this type of work. Yes, it can create a fine image but really falls down in rough and tumble work. I've also
...Show more
I was already looking at used 1d mark ii's so but i had figured that one already. haha. I would like to with an old 24-70 and 70-200 at F2.8 like you said non IS on the tele isnt a must for me right now. I think i was still wondering if i could shoot the 24-105 and be ok at F4. My concern was more about the bokeh your saying thats not an issue, so i ask you personally do you think the 24-105 can get the job done at F4 regardless of bokeh? Thx for the advice all!



Jul 25, 2012 at 10:42 PM
DizzelDel
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p.1 #13 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Steady Hand wrote:
Very good advice and well written.

My Suggestion: Go Prime and FAST.

But...given that your subjects may change as an intern....I think a fast WIDE prime for "in your face" photos and a fast 70-200mm (for sports, and such) would be the choice.

what about distortion at wider focal lengths? would that me and issue? say I go with a prime 28mm.



Jul 25, 2012 at 10:45 PM
anscochrome
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p.1 #14 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Newspaper readers (the few that still do) could really give a two dollar rat's behind about bokeh in a photo. They will glance at it to reinforce information in an article (the subject of the photo, not the quality of the background blur), and that is that. Besides, low res newsprint isn't going to preserve any "artistic bokeh" in the first place.


Jul 25, 2012 at 10:52 PM
Ralph Conway
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p.1 #15 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


That is right (means my expirience, too). But Why not doing PJ work and wanting to do better pictures than necessary for the averadge paper?

Ralph



Jul 25, 2012 at 11:05 PM
netexpress
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p.1 #16 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


I've never done PJ so fade me. From what I see most PJ's use the 24-70 2.8L and the 70-200 2.8L IS.

I'll offer an option and feel free to shot me down. I can take it

Sell:
5d Mark II 17-40 F4L, Canon 70-200mm F4L

Keep:
Canon 50mm 1.4

Buy
Two (2) 1D II
85mm f/1.8
70-200 f/2.8L non-IS
The best wide fast prime you can afford down the road...

The idea is to always keep two 1D II on you at all times with a different lens on each body. That's what I do. Then you never have to bother with changing lenses. You just reach for the body with the lens you want and shoot. Use fast primes most of the time and the 70-200 f/2.8L when you need reach. You'll always have plenty of speed with this kit. The idea of being limited to an f/4 lens sounds terrible to me.



Jul 25, 2012 at 11:07 PM
joeisayo
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p.1 #17 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


I did my first newspaper internship with a couple EOS 1Vs and a Leica M6 back in the late 90's.
What you need is a couple of camera that have good high ISO (5D2/3, 1D3/4), couple of fast zooms (24-70L & 70-200 IS, strobe, and one fast prime like a 35 or 50.
Decent newspapers will have long lenses for you to shoot.
More important than any gear is finding a good mentor and soaking as much knowledge as possible.
Good luck!



Jul 25, 2012 at 11:15 PM
Ralph Conway
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p.1 #18 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


netexpress wrote:
I've never done PJ so fade me. From what I see most PJ's use the 24-70 2.8L and the 70-200 2.8L IS.

I'll offer an option and feel free to shot me down. I can take it

Sell:
5d Mark II 17-40 F4L, Canon 70-200mm F4L

Keep:
Canon 50mm 1.4

Buy
Two (2) 1D II
85mm f/1.8
70-200 f/2.8L non-IS
The best wide fast prime you can afford down the road...

The idea is to always keep two 1D II on you at all times with a different lens on each body. That's what I do. Then you never have to bother with changing lenses. You just reach
...Show more

High ISO imo is more important then you think. I would not go out with any body that does not support usable ISO 3.200-6.400. 1D II is not this body. Two 1D IIs would not do a better job imo.
5D II or 1D IV would do it. Of course 5D III is the optimal choice if one can not afford a 1D X (and which press photographer can, if he has not an additional job or a paper, that gives him the camera)?

Ralph





Jul 25, 2012 at 11:33 PM
capitalK
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p.1 #19 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


I worked with a 24-70mm f/2.8, 70-200mm f/2.8 and 50mm f/1.4 as my PJ kit for a few years and it works really well. There's no gaps in coverage at all and they are all really great lenses.

Currently I have a much different kit, I have a 16-35mm f/2.8, a 135mm f/2 and a 50mm f/1.8 II. A 1.4x II tele-converter makes the 135mm a little longer if I need the reach (192mm f/2.8 if I remember correctly). Not having a zoom as my tele can be a pain sometimes but I am really happy with the results I get when it does work.

I have thought a 24-105mm f/4 might be a good addition to my kit, or maybe an 85mm f/1.8 but I've been using this 16-35, 50, 135 combo for the last year and I really like it.



Jul 25, 2012 at 11:45 PM
Jay Connor
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p.1 #20 · Canon Lens Dilemma [Photojournalism]


Diz
I cant advise what to sell/buy but the working PJ big three that I see most in Boston is

70-200 2.8
24-70 2.8
16-35 2.8

If I get a general assignment thats what I bring

Of course if its a sports event then its a different ballgame
Many sports can be covered with the 70-200 especially if you add a relatively cheap 1.4x extender

I very rarely see primes used by the working press

Good luck and please tell us what you choose

Best
Jay



Jul 25, 2012 at 11:56 PM
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