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Archive 2013 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains
  
 
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


This will be my first summer going into the White Mountains with a Canon 5D3. I have room in my backpack for one wide angle lens. Which should it be?

In the past with Nikon cameras I had the 20mm f/3.5 AIS if I wanted a small lens, Zeiss 21mm f/2.8 for best quality, or 16-35mm f/4 zoom for flexibility.

For Canon I already have the 24-70 f/4 zoom. I could use the Zeiss for Nikon with adapter, but I don't like pure manual operation. Or I could acquire a lens. The 24mm T/S is supposedly very good, probably longer than I want. The 17mm T/S is not as good. The Canon 20mm f/2.8 has a bad review and its only advantage would be size.

Previous threads specifically about the two tilt shift lenses have ended up with a larger pro-24 camp saying "you can always shoot a panorama" and a smaller pro-17 camp saying "you can always use a teleconverter." But I don't know what sort of landscapes those two groups are thinking about.

I am unimpressed with reviews of Canon's ultrawide zooms. They don't seem as good as the Nikon or Tokina brands.

Opinions?



Apr 23, 2013 at 05:39 PM
Monito
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Canon 28 mm f/2.8 non-IS. They only just stopped making it, so snap one up while you can.

Good for hiking: 6.53 ounces (185 grams), sharp.

Another good alternative is to shoot with a 50 mm f/1.8 or f/1.4 and stitch handheld panels. That makes high resolution vistas. Shoot a vista in three panels and get a 40+ Mpx photo out of it. Also light and sharp.

Shoot a vista with the 28 in three panels and get ultra-wide ultra-high resolution. Stitching minimizes lens blur (makes it smaller as a percentage of dimensions) and makes the final result sharper than a single ultra-wide lens.



Apr 23, 2013 at 06:05 PM
kezeka
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


I have heard only great things about the zeiss 21 and its character. Why not get the ZE 21 with a native canon mount?


Apr 23, 2013 at 06:07 PM
Malux
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


just curious why you don't have the 16-35, 17-40, or the 14 2.8?


Apr 23, 2013 at 06:14 PM
Monito
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Don't overthink it.

Get a good wide angle lens that you can live with and like for years afterwards, perhaps with a bias toward low weight. Unless you plan to sell it right after the trip.

Certain lenses have characteristics that are desirable for one thing or another or undesirable for one thing or another. Like the Zeiss 21 has funky moustache distortion not so good for architecture. The 16-35 Mark II is very sharp, but there are sharper. However, I am sure it is plenty sharp for anyone who might make an original post like this one.

If you really aren't sure, buy one of the lenses used and then after the trip sell it for about what you paid for it used. You could buy all of these lenses used and try them all in sequence and buy back the one you like the most. By that point you'll be the expert and we'll ask you questions.

All the alternatives offered are good lenses. Get one you like and be done with it and be happy. Don't overthink.



Apr 23, 2013 at 06:19 PM
artd
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Vox Sciurorum wrote:
The 24mm T/S is supposedly very good, probably longer than I want. The 17mm T/S is not as good.

Where did you get that impression? The 17mm is a superb lens. It may not fit your needs if you prefer a zoom...but as far as ultrawide primes go, it is as good of a lens as you will find. (Plus the ability to shift.)




Apr 23, 2013 at 06:20 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


I regularly photograph in the back-country, and I would virtually always rather have a zoom than a prime.


Apr 23, 2013 at 06:52 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


I regularly photograph in the back-country, and I would virtually always rather have a zoom than a prime.


Apr 23, 2013 at 06:52 PM
timpdx
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Tokina 16-28 but its hard to work with filters (apparently you can do this now, Lee or someone makes a filter holder big enough)

Any of the F2.8 zooms are going to be heavy



Apr 23, 2013 at 07:19 PM
Fjellfalck
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Well If just only one lens I would take:

24-70 f/4 IS if you have the space and accept the weight. It gives you a lot of flexibility.

Personally I feel the 17, 20 and 21mm as the only lens, is too wide as a general lens for a hike.

A very good compromise is the very good new 28 f/2.8 IS. Add the 40mm pancake and you have a flexible very light 2 lens setup for landscapes.

Out of the primes you mentioned, I would take the Zeiss 21mm.

Fjellfalck



Apr 23, 2013 at 07:44 PM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



Monito
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Fjellfalck wrote:
A very good compromise is the very good new 28 f/2.8 IS. Add the 40mm pancake and you have a flexible very light 2 lens setup for landscapes.


... if you buy into the landscapes = wide angle fallacy.

A better two lens set up for landscapes would be a 16-35 L Mark II and a 70-200 mm f/4 IS. Some highly accomplished landscape photographers go out shooting with something very similar.



Apr 23, 2013 at 07:58 PM
alundeb
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


I think we need to know if you have room for one lens and want to take a wide angle lens, or if you have room for one wide angle lens in addition to other lenses.



Apr 23, 2013 at 08:26 PM
Fjellfalck
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Monito wrote:
... if you buy into the landscapes = wide angle fallacy.

A better two lens set up for landscapes would be a 16-35 L Mark II and a 70-200 mm f/4 IS. Some highly accomplished landscape photographers go out shooting with something very similar.


Agree. My 3 lens setup for landscapes is 16-35 II, 24-70 + 70-200 f/4 IS, Two lens normal setup: 24-70 + 70-200 or 16-35 (I use the 70-200 more than the 16-35), One lens setup: 24-70, Light hiking setup: 28 + 40.

Fjellfalck



Apr 23, 2013 at 08:27 PM
photosenior
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Are you backpacking or car camping. If you are backpacking weight is an issue!
The 24-105 gives you a great deal of coverage without compromising quality. You will not like the weight of the 24-70 if you are backpacking. Do yourself a favor and think lightweight...



Apr 23, 2013 at 08:38 PM
nikey
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


photosenior wrote:
Are you backpacking or car camping. If you are backpacking weight is an issue!
The 24-105 gives you a great deal of coverage without compromising quality. You will not like the weight of the 24-70 if you are backpacking. Do yourself a favor and think lightweight...


What? Have you ever checked that 24-70L/f4 is lighter than 24-105L



Apr 23, 2013 at 09:17 PM
StarNut
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


I hike a lot, what with all the beauty we have around here. I generally carry my 24-105 and my 70-200, plus extenders.

Unless you're going to carry a tripod, you'll miss the IS for your best landscapes. The versatility of the 24-105 is excellent. Its shortcomings are greatly overstated around here, IMO, and generally easily corrected in PP.

JMO

Mark



Apr 23, 2013 at 09:57 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


How do you feel about an alternative approach?

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1205970



Apr 23, 2013 at 10:06 PM
molson
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


Unless you're carrying a sturdy tripod, it won't much matter what lens you choose.

I have the 17 and 24mm TS-E lenses and the Zeiss 21 f2.8, but I kept a 17-40L specifically for hiking and backpacking - you can't really beat it for performance and flexibility in a lightweight, inexpensive package.



Apr 23, 2013 at 10:11 PM
RobDickinson
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains


molson wrote:
Unless you're carrying a sturdy tripod, it won't much matter what lens you choose.

I have the 17 and 24mm TS-E lenses and the Zeiss 21 f2.8, but I kept a 17-40L specifically for hiking and backpacking - you can't really beat it for performance and flexibility in a lightweight, inexpensive package.


I agree entirely.



Apr 23, 2013 at 10:28 PM
tsdevine
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Wide lens for hiking in mountains



I'd take my 16-35 II....it's "good enough" at f/11. I have the Zeiss 15 & 21...and have at least used the 24mm TS-E II. So I'm sort of in the molson/Rob Dickinson camp. A 16-35 or 17-40 zoom's flexibility can't be ignored.

-Tim



Apr 23, 2013 at 10:40 PM
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