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Archive 2012 · Trip to Japan
  
 
ash4390
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p.1 #1 · Trip to Japan


I'll be doing a trip to Japan for a couple weeks starting this Saturday.. I'm kinda up in arms about what gear I should bring.

What I got:

D3s
D800 w/grip
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
Nikon 50mm f/1.8g
Nikon 70-300mm VR
Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 OS
SB800 Flash

I most likely will not bring a tripod, or flash. I was leaning towards the D3s for the low-light performance when I'm wondering about at night -- but I'm in love with D800's resolution + DR.

As for lenses, I'm thinking 24-70 for sure so I have the wider end covered, but I'm open to suggestions.

Any ideas? I'd love to pick up a travel lens like the 24-85 but that might be stretching it a bit..



Aug 07, 2012 at 11:29 PM
Frank_Maiello
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p.1 #2 · Trip to Japan


It's easy to have an opinion, but only you know your style. Personally, I try to travel light so it doesn't become a pain, but still leave plenty of options available. To that end, I'd choose:

D800, no grip
50 f/1.8
70-300 VR

If the 24-70 is the widest option, I'd take that. Otherwise, maybe you're due for a wider angle lens than 24mm. I wouldn't travel somewhere I've never been without one!



Aug 07, 2012 at 11:44 PM
hidden_Markov
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p.1 #3 · Trip to Japan


what part(s) of japan are you going to?


Kyushu on down south to here in okinawa you start to hit sub tropical weather. Hazy hot and humid. not sure how BC is summer time, but the summers here can be bad for the noobs.

Daytime kit I'd go lightish at first as you will be hauling water bottles of some kind (or should anyway lol). 24-70 will work. Its my new fave walk around lens. Will also be the one of 2 lens' I take to tokyo for a November trip. Other one is an 85mm 1.4 D. But I have hit tokyo a few times and know what I like to shoot and don't need (as I have carried it up, rarely used and carried back going man this sucks lol). YMMV. 50mm a good focal lenght as well and 1.8 should be fast enough with high iso as needed.

Buy any last minute gear local to you. Unless canadian money omfg better than US your yen rate will suck. And japan local market boosts prices real bad. I window shop in the mega stores like yodabashi in tokyo then I come home and order from say BH at some point lol.


its nearing end of summer and the festivals start to roll out. You may get lucky in your areas(s) going to and catch some.



Aug 08, 2012 at 12:05 AM
krickett
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p.1 #4 · Trip to Japan


I'd go with D800, 24-70, 50, and maybe the 70-300. I'm not sure what your style is, but I never see a reason to haul around a 70-200 for urban travel.

As for night shots, will you be walking around a city? In the busier parts of Tokyo, it's so well lit that you won't need high ISO.

Any urban travel, it always seems like there's lots of architecture, which means using the widest lens you have.

Other than that, it will be ridiculously muggy and hot in Japan at this time (especially to someone from the PNW), and you will want to chuck your 70-200 in a river.



Aug 08, 2012 at 12:34 AM
AMaji
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p.1 #5 · Trip to Japan


I did Japan once with a D80+18-55, and once with D300+18-200+105Macro. You definitely will need some wide angle lens for the city as well as nature images. Using a tripod is not allowed in many important locations, like the Golden Temple of Kyoto etc. without special permits. I don't know how to get those permits, so I shot hand held even though I was carrying a tripod.

My suggested kit will be the D800 without grip, 24-70 and 70-300. With the restrictions on baggage in airplanes, traveling light is almost a necessity. If you really want a travel lens for your FF, get the 28-300 or if you want better IQ, 24-120.

Bon Voyage.



Aug 08, 2012 at 01:42 AM
Zebrabot
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p.1 #6 · Trip to Japan


bring a radiation suit.




Aug 08, 2012 at 03:45 AM
Smridevan
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p.1 #7 · Trip to Japan


Zebrabot wrote:
bring a radiation suit.



Lol



Aug 08, 2012 at 04:24 AM
Vinnie_VdB
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p.1 #8 · Trip to Japan


I am going in the first week of October to Japan as well.
Does anybody knows if there are deals to be made on the Nikon gear? I was there a few years ago and could not find price advantages on the Nikon stuff in Tokyo.

Thx for your replies already.



Aug 08, 2012 at 05:52 AM
hidden_Markov
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p.1 #9 · Trip to Japan


Vinnie_VdB wrote:
I am going in the first week of October to Japan as well.
Does anybody knows if there are deals to be made on the Nikon gear? I was there a few years ago and could not find price advantages on the Nikon stuff in Tokyo.

Thx for your replies already.



if you like used and AIS the nikon store in ginza can have some glass that can be comparable to US pricing in sale threads....sometimes. Been over a years since I visited it but prices not too bad. And for stuff like such as say 24 2.0 AIS you get to try before you buy. would have to dig up a pic (or someone will, someone always seems to for these threads) but the store has been posted here before,. Big yellow nikon yellow sign on it. If briinging a companion not into your hobby but likes sweets there is a nice cake/sweet/bakery shop like 3 stores up called Fuji-ya. I guide my wife to there and it gets me less sigh's in the nikon store.

This nikon store is often confused as being a site see stop for tourists. Its a real store, be cool to the dude that runs it and pretend to be a real customer even if not (this more for peeps in general). Dude has alot of patience though so not an ass about it as i have seen on a few visits.

Akihabara (electronics district where lots of stuff will be centered)has some side street used places but quality and pricing I cannot speak for. Some stuff has been to hell and back it looks like.

The retail new stores hate to squash your dreams....but I have to. recent example. Major chain camera store on my island had the Siggy 24-70 in stock. At 120,000 yen or there abouts. at a 100 to 1 rate a $1200 US lens (and its not that good a yen rate, I just like simple math). BH at the time had it at $900 US. welcome to Japan.

But accessories could be priced right. same camera store I found the more mechanical cable release(the plain one, not the fancy electronic one) for my d700 priced at about the same as I would have paid at BH. The money lost in yen conversion I wrote off as S&H I would have paid but had it then and there. A place in tokyo I also got the full metal hood for my 50 1.2 at going US retail price (didn't pay for S&H on it for kind of a deal).


You can look and have better luck than I. Still have the fun of exploring either way.



Aug 08, 2012 at 07:20 AM
surf monkey
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p.1 #10 · Trip to Japan


As Markova said, you need to let us know where you're going and what you plan to shoot.

It's a bit like saying, "I'm going to the United States, what gear should I use?"



Aug 08, 2012 at 07:37 AM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



philber
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p.1 #11 · Trip to Japan


One comment to add. Japan has lots of really beautiful stuff that is close up. Not only flowers and bonsai, but all manners of decoration and ornaments that would be unfortunate to miss if that is your cup of tea. So make sure that at least one of your lenses has,if not macro, at least close up capability.


Aug 08, 2012 at 07:55 AM
hidden_Markov
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p.1 #12 · Trip to Japan


forgot to mention if you have an old fisheye buried in the cabinet...it may be worth it to bring it. Japanese cities (assuming thats on the lsit of places) can be fun places to use its unique perspective. One trip I had solo killed quite a bit of time shooting in some train stations with a fish eye. Not saying buy one if lacking ofc.

I'd be bringing mine but I got a hot date with Mickey and Minny at tokyo disney and plans to hit yokohama to see the anpanman museum (anpanman is a japanese kids cartoon show, my kids loves it so he should get a kick out of it). More creative shooting will be non existent for me lol.



Aug 08, 2012 at 08:14 AM
Slug69
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p.1 #13 · Trip to Japan


If you want to buy lenses, Hong Kong is difficult to better. Fantastic value.


Aug 08, 2012 at 12:44 PM
Two23
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p.1 #14 · Trip to Japan


What I've been finding over the years that most people tend to take the same kind of photos and use the same gear on a trip that they do at home. The only thing that really changes is the food they eat. The second philosophy I've acquired from a couple of decades of travel is to take as little as possible and avoid duplication. From your list I'd take SB-800 (I do use flash a lot, especially off camera,) the 24-70mm, and the 70-200mm if you are sticking to cities. I'd take the 70-300mm instead if going to some rural areas. As for bodies, you need two as a back up is important. I'd lose the grip off the D800.

With airlines getting ever crankier, and my increasing dislike to walk around with bulky and heavy camera gear, I switched to using a D5100 body on my trip to Scotland, London, and Iceland in June. I'm now considering a mirrorless camera. Carrying heavy camera gear around when it probably will not be needed just isn't pleasant. Look for ways to lighten your load.


Kent in SD



Aug 08, 2012 at 12:53 PM
M635_Guy
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p.1 #15 · Trip to Japan


I'd take the D800 without the grip. With all due respect to Kent, I wouldn't take a backup unless it was a P&S - that is a lot to carry if you aren't a working pro.

As for the lenses, I really loved my 35 1.8 on my crop-sensor on my recent trip to Japan. There were a lot of opportunities to get creative with composition and DOF, and I found myself shooting with it quite a bit.

I'd take the 24-70 for a walk-around lens. It is a big piece of kit, but obviously a great lens. (I have a Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 that is my go-to lens)

For the long zoom, I'd go 70-300 over the 70-200 Siggy for the weight and reach. For the way I shoot, I didn't need the fast glass as much as I needed reach. I took my 80-200 f/2.8 ED on my trip to Japan/China, but the weight was so much that it stayed in the room in favor of my 18-200 VRII.

Those three lenses with an ungripped body is manageable for bulk and weight, but isn't exactly traveling light. In a pinch, I'd probably go with my 18-200 and 35 1.8 as a light kit. A lot of folks sneer at the Nikon 18-200/28-300/18-300 lenses, but I love mine for travel.

Are you taking a tripod/monopod?



Aug 08, 2012 at 01:48 PM
Joseph Garcin
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p.1 #16 · Trip to Japan


Still need the answer. Where are you going? It really does make a difference.
But my advice would be:
D800
24-70
70-200
50
and something wider.
No real need to worry about low light imho. Japan is well lit. Overly lit. The creamy shadows of the D800 will serve you well when you have HDR type situations. Inside most temples, f2.8, ISO 1600 and steady hands will be fine.

Japan is a land of juxtapositions. Going in with an eye for contrasts will prepare you for excellent opportunities.

Again, we really need to know where you are going, what you want to find, and what your expectations are in order to give you not only advice on gear, but on things to shoot, see, eat, and drink in this land that I have been living in for decades.



Aug 08, 2012 at 02:04 PM
Joseph Garcin
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p.1 #17 · Trip to Japan


Smridevan wrote:
Lol


Yeah, that is really funny.



Aug 08, 2012 at 02:06 PM
AMaji
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p.1 #18 · Trip to Japan


Zebrabot wrote:
bring a radiation suit.



Sorry, I don't find it funny.



Aug 08, 2012 at 03:05 PM
treacle
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p.1 #19 · Trip to Japan


I would go on the lighter side:
D800 w/o grip
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
Nikon 50mm f/1.8g
Nikon 70-300mm VR
SB800 Flash (if you think you will use it)
plus a small pocket camera or iPhone/Android camera for times you don't feel like carrying the big gear



Aug 08, 2012 at 03:23 PM
ash4390
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p.1 #20 · Trip to Japan


Sorry for the late reply...

I'll be heading to Tokyo and Osaka for sure, the rest of the trip is on a "Take it as it comes" with my travel mates.

Thank you for the suggestions so far! Looks like D800 w/o grip has an overwhelming consensus, as well as the 24-70 and the 70-300 VR.

The point of the trip is to go and have a good time with some friends, nights out on the town, morning trips to tourist attractions will al be part of it. There isn't a specific point to this trip I guess!



Aug 08, 2012 at 04:51 PM
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