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Archive 2012 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options
  
 
jhinkey
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p.2 #1 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


Andre Labonte wrote:
Why not go with your 70-200 f/4? The size and weight of a 90mm + a 180mm lens will ultimately be greater than the one zoom. Speed is not an issue as you are considering the 90CV but you gain the advatage of not having to switch lenses and you get all the focal lengths from 70-200.

It sounds like what you need is a better camera bag solution to make carrying what you have more comfortable.


Andre -

There certainly are times when the 70-200/4 will be the solution, but many times I do not want or cannot have a D800 + 70-200/4 dangling from my chest. Small lenses are a must many times - like this weekend when I had my 16/3.5 AI, 50/1.8G, and 100/2.8E with me. One on the camera, two on my chest straps in individual Op/Tech neoprene snoot boots. No need to dig into a bag, take off a backpack, etc. and lens changes are quick. Usually the main purpose is not to take pictures, but rather to get a workout and get somewhere, so being slow or having a cumbersome system (especially with two hiking poles) is a real problem.

When I'm not on the go so much and perhaps have a really small backpack I use a fanny pack slung over my shoulder - in this case the 70-200/4 is the solution and I typically have my 17-35/2.8AFS, 16/3.5, 50/1.8G, and perhaps my 400/5.6 ED in my small backpack.

When I'm not on the go at all and am not hiking I have a photo backpack that does the job.- that is when I have a large tripod and have all the time that I want and can bring out the big cannons (like the 70-200/2.8).

Hence my desire for something small/light in the ~100mm range and a 200mm-ish would be great too. My 200/4 runs out of steam on my D800. 135mm might be a good compromise between 100mm and 200mm if the IQ is there.

- John



Jan 02, 2013 at 11:40 PM
lou f
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p.2 #2 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


no one mentioned the 105 macro lenses yet? if your objective isn't to take photos any particular reason you wont just grab something small, fast and mirrorless? if your not out to shoot your not really going to be at the right place at the right time. or are you...


Jan 02, 2013 at 11:55 PM
SSISteve
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p.2 #3 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options





You will then likely ask why not the OM-D for the better DR - well it has a horrid menu system, Frankenstein-ish button layout, no built-in flash, no 16:9 native sensor, and needs a grip to be workable which then makes it a very very expensive camera (even before I get to adding lenses). Hopefully the EM-6 will address most of these issues.

John


As an owner of the OM-D I would think this would be a great lightweight option. The menus are not that bad it just takes some time to figure them out since it is a new camera. Personally, I don't have a problem with the button layout plus the added bonus of having an articulating touch screen has been great for shooting landscapes. Also not sure why you would need a built in flash for landscape work. There are some great lens options that give you a very lightweight kit.


Steve



Jan 03, 2013 at 12:30 AM
jhinkey
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p.2 #4 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


SSISteve wrote:
As an owner of the OM-D I would think this would be a great lightweight option. The menus are not that bad it just takes some time to figure them out since it is a new camera. Personally, I don't have a problem with the button layout plus the added bonus of having an articulating touch screen has been great for shooting landscapes. Also not sure why you would need a built in flash for landscape work. There are some great lens options that give you a very lightweight kit.

Steve

Thanks Steve -
I don't use the flash for landscape work, but sometimes out in the mountains when I am using it for landscapes it's the only camera I have and I use flash for fill light or the only light for candids of my fellow hikers/climbers.

You see, I rarely get an opportunity to just get out and shoot landscapes, so I have to combine it with my hiking/climbing/backpacking/etc. activities and thus my list of desired attributes for lenses and bodies. Hence a built-in flash is very useful to me many times and having to fumble around to find that small add-on flash is just not worth it. I've handled the OM-D several times now and although I'm sure I could eventually figure it out it's just a mess compared to my other cameras (Nikon, Panasonic, etc.) and it should not be that hard. The GH-2 menu system and button layout immediately made sense to me and I have no problems going back and forth between myD800 and now GH-2. The OM-D is a very nice camera for sure and the DR, weather sealing, and IBIS are fantastic - it's just not the model for me. Now that Oly 75/1.8 oh man . . . and the rumored 150/2.8 Pany oh man!

Anyways a bit off topic. I admit I perhaps have not done the best explaining my requirements and my camera/lens usage, but I do very much appreciate the ideas and feedback.

John


Edited on Jan 03, 2013 at 12:52 AM · View previous versions



Jan 03, 2013 at 12:46 AM
jhinkey
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p.2 #5 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


lou f wrote:
no one mentioned the 105 macro lenses yet? if your objective isn't to take photos any particular reason you wont just grab something small, fast and mirrorless? if your not out to shoot your not really going to be at the right place at the right time. or are you...


Many times you know your are going to be in the right place and hopefully the right time for some nice landscape shots and I like to be prepared as much as possible. The GH-2 fits the small, fast and mirrorless for those times where the big gear just is not possible to bring.

However, I try to take the D800 as much as possible due to the DR and IQ capabilities, but I still try to keep the lenses small, the IQ high, and the weight down. I have a small CF tripod/ball head that many landscape shooters would laugh at, but they wouldn't after 4 miles and 4K feet of a hike and I manage with practice to make it work well despite the non-rock-solidness of it.

There will be no black/white answers to my questions, but at least folks like you are offering me options!

- John



Jan 03, 2013 at 12:51 AM
Andre Labonte
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p.2 #6 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


jhinkey wrote:
Andre -

There certainly are times when the 70-200/4 will be the solution, but many times I do not want or cannot have a D800 + 70-200/4 dangling from my chest. Small lenses are a must many times - like this weekend when I had my 16/3.5 AI, 50/1.8G, and 100/2.8E with me. One on the camera, two on my chest straps in individual Op/Tech neoprene snoot boots. No need to dig into a bag, take off a backpack, etc. and lens changes are quick. Usually the main purpose is not to take pictures, but rather to get a workout and
...Show more

Ah, so it's not just over-all size and weight but the size of the "chunks" as well. Yea, it does not sound like my solution fits your needs well at all, but if you are interested, here it is:

Lowepro Toploader Pro AW 75 (or the slightly smaller AW70).

http://www.lowepro.com/toploaderpro

Granted it's a bag, but it fits snug to the chest and protects the camera nicely ... top loaders are super easy to access even while moving and it's more comfortable than having the camera and lens dangling.

Also, have you considered the Tamron 180 f/3.5 ... fantastic lens that resolves well on my D300 which equates to 27MP FX resolution in terms of pixel density ... it should be good enough for the D800 but I have no direct data on that. It is smaller and lighter than the Nikon 200 and has a great feature for turning a CP filter even when the hood is on. You can get one at B&H for just under $700

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/284406-REG/Tamron_AFB01N700_180mm_f_3_5_Macro_Autofocus.html







Jan 03, 2013 at 03:24 AM
penghai
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p.2 #7 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


Andre Labonte wrote:
Also, have you considered the Tamron 180 f/3.5 ... fantastic lens that resolves well on my D300 which equates to 27MP FX resolution in terms of pixel density ...


FYI, the Tamron 180 is about the same weight as the old version of Sigma 150. About 2 lb if I remembered right.

Eric



Jan 03, 2013 at 03:46 AM
ReyGay
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p.2 #8 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


Hi John, I can vouch for the Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 Ais at 24Mp but not sure at 36Mp. Excellent sharpness, micro contrast and bokeh. The issue is the rarity of a mint or brand new condition for this lens. One to look for is the coating, older ones are green and the new ones are faint orange/yellow for the rear lens, these are the ones that work best with dslrs. Good luck with your search. Cheers!


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Jan 03, 2013 at 03:56 AM
LizzieShepherd
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p.2 #9 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


jhinkey wrote:
Which 135/2.8 does he have - the AIS or the series E? They have different optical designs.

John


I think it's the AI - prongs but smaller aperture nos all in white? Quickly tried it again and still not impressed - but might just be his copy.
Lizzie



Jan 03, 2013 at 10:56 AM
jhinkey
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p.2 #10 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


Well, I went ahead and purchased the 90/3.5 CV in Nikon mount. I found a reputable dealer that still had some of these in stock. Price was better than some used or new ones on e-bay, etc.
Should get it early next week and I'll post some samples and my thoughts.

I'm also getting the 135/3.5 AIS to compare. Though they are somewhat different focal lengths I will still look at relative sharpness, contrast, ghosting, and flare. I may grab a 135/2.8 AIS as well, though I am having troubles finding the most recent versions that supposedly have better coatings.

John



Jan 03, 2013 at 11:23 PM
 

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jhinkey
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p.2 #11 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


ReyGay wrote:
Hi John, I can vouch for the Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 Ais at 24Mp but not sure at 36Mp. Excellent sharpness, micro contrast and bokeh. The issue is the rarity of a mint or brand new condition for this lens. One to look for is the coating, older ones are green and the new ones are faint orange/yellow for the rear lens, these are the ones that work best with dslrs. Good luck with your search. Cheers!

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Do you have any references about the change in coatings for the 135/2.8 AIS - i.e., what serial numbers have the newer coatings?

Thanks -

John



Jan 03, 2013 at 11:34 PM
mco_970
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p.2 #12 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


As an aside, if you get a chance to try a NEX setup with Contax lenses, I think this might be a very good option for travelling light up a mountain side. Contax G 90 is just amazing and tiny! It makes a nice 135 equiv. on crop. You could probably carry a NEX and the lens for about the same weight as a proper 135mm lens for FX.

I take my NEX kit for hiking/mountain biking for packability reasons until my pack goats grow up.



Jan 04, 2013 at 03:12 AM
molson
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p.2 #13 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


For the long end, you might want to track down a Voigtlander 180mm f4 APO-Lanthar SL.



Jan 04, 2013 at 04:38 AM
jhinkey
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p.2 #14 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


molson wrote:
For the long end, you might want to track down a Voigtlander 180mm f4 APO-Lanthar SL.


Oh yeah - pretty pricey though!



Jan 04, 2013 at 06:21 AM
jhinkey
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p.2 #15 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


mco_970 wrote:
As an aside, if you get a chance to try a NEX setup with Contax lenses, I think this might be a very good option for travelling light up a mountain side. Contax G 90 is just amazing and tiny! It makes a nice 135 equiv. on crop. You could probably carry a NEX and the lens for about the same weight as a proper 135mm lens for FX.

I take my NEX kit for hiking/mountain biking for packability reasons until my pack goats grow up.


I passed on the NEX bodies because of the lack of good native lenses, but the G 90 might go well with my GH-2 though . . .

Thanks -

John



Jan 04, 2013 at 06:30 AM
Zichar
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p.2 #16 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


A random thought: you can get hold of an adapter and check out the old Mamiya 645 lenses. Larger image circle may be better perhaps? Some of them are quite light


Jan 04, 2013 at 08:34 AM
RRRoger
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p.2 #17 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


My V1 and CX lens very small and light weight for hiking.
The images are very good and I like the huge DOF.
But when the very best images are what I am after, it is the D800 and Heavy Pro Glass with a TriPod.
Or the 28-300 Hand Held, which is nearly as good.

I also just got the SuperLight (and surprisingly good) AF-S 50 f/1.8G.
It might be very good for hiking at the Pinnacles, especially in the caves.

Edited on Jan 04, 2013 at 02:10 PM · View previous versions



Jan 04, 2013 at 08:57 AM
ReyGay
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p.2 #18 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


jhinkey wrote:
Do you have any references about the change in coatings for the 135/2.8 AIS - i.e., what serial numbers have the newer coatings?

Thanks -

John




Here ya go:


The one on the right is the 2002 version while on the left, the 1980's version:

Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 Ais lens coating samples by ReyGay, on Flickr





My older 135mm really looks beat up on this photo - the serial no. you needed on the right lens sample:

Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 Ais lens coating samples by ReyGay, on Flickr





The front lens seems to have similar coatings but I think there is less green and purple coating on the later version:

Nikkor 135mm f/2.8 Ais lens coating samples by ReyGay, on Flickr



This guy has some great references on serial no's but it doesn't say which ones has the recent coatings: http://www.photosynthesis.co.nz/nikon/lenses.html

Cheers!



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My interesting photos on Flickriver
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Jan 04, 2013 at 09:20 AM
LizzieShepherd
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p.2 #19 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


That adds up then - my brother's one has an earlier serial number and a greenish tint to the rear glass - hence, I guess, the less than satisfactory performance...


Jan 04, 2013 at 10:33 AM
DaveOls
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p.2 #20 · ~100mm & ~200mm Lightweight Prime Options


I've got the Nikon 135mm f/3.5 AIS lens, but have not tried it with digital yet. I do have a spot meter though. I'll try to post some this afternoon.
Since I have a Nikon D80 it does not meter with the camera.



Jan 04, 2013 at 12:25 PM
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