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DSLR for Maui Vacation
  
 
la puffin
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I'm going to Maui for 11 nights next month (and I need it - my bf is awesome for this!). When I went to the Big Island last year, I only brought my purse camera, a Sony RX100 III. I usually spend my time by the pool with a rum cocktail or out on the golf course, but that last trip, we did some exploring and I regretted not having something more serious photographically.

By exploring, I don't mean hiking, I mean driving and getting out of the car, or walking around Lahaina.

I was planning on bringing a D5 and a 24-70E and 70-200E. The benefits are no cost since I own them, I'm incredibly familiar with them, and love the IQ and versatility. But this is a big kit for a vacation. I use them for work, but this is to be a laid back time. It's bikini, Man Tai and camera.

I'm think about renting a Df and using my lenses, but I'm not saving a whole heck of a lot of weight or bulk.

Another idea is the D5 wth the 24-70 and renting a 105/1.4 or the Sigma 135/1.8. I'm concerned the 105 isn't long enough, and I just feel little weird with Sigma. When I had the 120-300, I tuned it well with the dock, but that was a lot of work. I don't want to do that for this. I also hate leaving out the 70-200/2.8E as it's a lens I trust in any situation. I could do the 24-70 and 200/2, but that's a load. I'm flying Hawaiian first class, so I'm not worried about getting into the overhead.

Are there any other ideas or options that I might be leaving out? I don't want to rent two primes because I don't know what I'll be shooting. I have a D500 but don't want to use DX. I also don't want any lens slower than f2.8. I don't want to rent a whole Fuji system and spend time messing around with learning a foreign system.

Any ideas or thoughts that I might be missing? The whole point of the vacation is to chill out, but when I take shots, I want a very high level of quality.


Thanks a lot.



Nov 05, 2017 at 06:33 AM
charles.K
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


Definitely the D750 is a great option The Df would be fun with the lenses you own too. Even take the 50/1.8G, as this lens is a surprise package on the D750 when you drinking from the rum bowl on the beach I often take this combo when I am traveling light. The 70-200E is a great lens and very hard to leave behind. I did not take the 70-200E this year to Spain with a lot of the airline security restrictions now in place.

A great travel kit is the D750 with 20,1.G, 35/1.4 Art, 50/1.8G and 85/1.8G. This is the kit my wife uses often for the weight and size alone.

Edited on Nov 05, 2017 at 11:02 PM · View previous versions



Nov 05, 2017 at 08:32 AM
Vinnie_VdB
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I travel a lot with camera gear including lenses bigger than the 70-200 E FL and there are of course no issues in respect of airport security, sometimes an additional check but nothing more.
If it is me I take the D5 (yes, it is big but equally awesome) but take a more all rounder as lens. Why do you need f2.8 lenses? This is leisure and travel so I am thinking of a 24-105 or any good rated Nikon in that range (there is one going to 120mm but can not recall the type).



Nov 05, 2017 at 09:42 AM
thedruid
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


As stated above why not try a Nikon 24-120VR F4, lots of people here love to bash it here but, it does the job. I have thousands of travelscapes made with this lens over the years and hundreds licensed through Getty images. You could pick up a refurb or used one for $550 and sell it on return and drop $100 on the deal. As for the body use what you have or yesterday there was a D750 refurb deal for $1299 on Nikon Rumors.

My travel kit is built around D750 and 24-120VR along with 18-35G and 70-200mm F4VR with 1.4c.



Nov 05, 2017 at 10:04 AM
Photozack81
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


2.8 glass doesn't really gain you much but weight. The above poster mentioned the 24-120 f/4 indirectly, it's not exactly a lightweight. If it was me, I'd take the best gear I had available to me (since the pictures are the point) and the weight isn't a concern. But you may feel different about this.


Nov 05, 2017 at 10:05 AM
morris
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


Make shore to visit the top of Heliaca Volcano. You want to be up there in the morning, sunrise is very popular.







180mm on a crop body







Many 11mm frames on crop body

Ware a hat and lots of sunscreen up there and if there is one hike to take, it's the one down into the rift area.

There will be times when 24mm is not enough. You can always do a pano.

Have a marvelous time!

Morris



Nov 05, 2017 at 12:36 PM
frezeiss
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


16-35 + 50 1.4 or 35 1.4 + 105 1.4. Since you have the 70-200, complementing it with the 35 1.4 is also nice. Like you said its lazy times, so minimal gear


Nov 05, 2017 at 12:54 PM
davewolfs
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


Iíd go light with a 24-120 and a walk around 50 or 35.

Iíve been all over Maui. Took plenty of beautiful pictures with a 24-70 and 17-35.



Nov 05, 2017 at 01:47 PM
Donzo98
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I just had the same dilemma... not Hawaii, but Punta Cana DR. I took my wife, daughter, son and 8 of her friends for her 16th birthday.

I have recently switched to Leica, but similar issues in terms of decision making. I took my Canon G7X II (same size as the Sony RX100 series), Leica Q (awesome go everywhere camera with excellent IQ, but a fixed 28mm), Leica SL with a bulky 24-90 and a Garmin Virb (like a Go Pro).

I used the SL ZERO times, the Q for a few shots... the small Canon and Virb got all the use.

If I were you... I would take the Sony, D5 and 24-70 or 24-105 or 120... and get a something to use in or near the water. People obsess over the size of the D5 vs smaller bodies, but then use the same bulky lenses they would on a on pro body. You don't really save much bulk/ weight. Take it....and don't be surprised if you only use it for a few shots.

Here are a couple... first from the Canon, last 2 with the the Virb. Second pic is my wife and I, last pic is my daughter and I.
























Nov 05, 2017 at 04:18 PM
Two23
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I've been to Maui at least three times, and last time I went I left my D800E and larger f2.8 lenses home. That stuff just isn't fun to haul around, and it made me much more conspicuous in the town markets (not in a good way.) I took a D5300 with Sigma 17-50mm f2.8 and carried that most of the time. My back up camera was a Leica IIIc with Leica LTM lenses 28/35/50/90. The Leica kit is tiny! Wife and I spent two days up on top of the volcano which was our favorite spot. We aren't the type that sits around a bar drinking though. We were worried about leaving anything in a car when we went hiking. We were told there was a lot of vehicle theft from people stealing to get money to buy drugs. The one thing I wouldn't leave home without is a polarizer.


Kent in SD



Nov 05, 2017 at 04:51 PM
 

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sandy27000
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


i have travelled a lot with the D5 (Europe, Australia and within India), and will take the D5 and my new D850 on my next vacation in Dec. Lenses are always a challenge, but I usually end up with the following:

1) Nikon 20mm f1.8G
2) Nikon 35mm f1.4G
3) Nikon 58mm f1.4G

(I will now take 24-70mm f2.8E VR instead of the above 3, perhaps keep the 20mm)

4) Nikon 70-200mm f2.8E FL (and TC1.4III) or Nikon 105mm f1.4E (it hurts to leave either one of these behind)
5) If not taking the 70-200mm, then Nikon 300mm f4 PF and TC1.4III

My two cents on a possible combo for you:

1) D5
2) 24-70
3) 70-200
4) rent a 35mm f1.8G or a 58mm f1.4G for walkabout
5) rent a 105mm f1.4E, itís a great lens to use on a trip like this

My logic is that you donít have airline weight restriction, so might as well take a bit more and use what you need on a given day.

Enjoy the trip !!



Nov 05, 2017 at 04:52 PM
millsart
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I just got back from a week in Maui (beautiful place)

While I hauled a good bit of gear with me, I honestly took 75% of my images with my iPhone 8+ and the surprisingly high quality Moment lenses (mainly fisheye and 18mm equiv WA)

After a few days, I stopped actually hauling my camera bag around for some trips. Just can't beat the ease of sweep pano's from the phone, the speed of pulling it from my pocket, hitting "portrait" mode and getting a surprisingly passable image to where I wasn't sure if it was the phone or the 50/1.8, and especially the slow motion video.

Main thing I was glad to have a real camera for was shooting some long exposure night sky shots from the top of the volcano (must do, but be careful on the drive up/down, hairpin turns and no guardrails!)

I didn't take the 105/1.4, which I slightly regret, as it produces amazing files, but honestly, I would of taken maybe 5% of images with it, and that is a lot of glass to otherwise haul around for a trip to the beach, into town shopping etc.

I really had zero need for a telephoto, though did go over to the Big Island for volcanos where the reach of a 50-230 on my Fuji XT2 was handy, and I could of used more reach honestly, just to get the lava going into the sea, and you can't get too close to that.

Honestly, there wasn't really anything that needed fast aperture either, short of a little subject isolation for shots of my spouse. Pictures of sunsets, palm tree silhouettes, landscapes all where pretty stopped down and at low ISO to boot.

Did lots of short "hikes" from the car to various overlooks, geological features and such, and after a while, it was just a drag to haul my camera bag with me everywhere (plus can get kind of hot there when the sun is out), but at the same time, due to thefts, can't leave the gear in the car. After a few days started to leave the gear in the safe at the room, and toss the Moment glass into my wife's purse lol.

Honestly, made the trip a little more enjoyable once I ditched the heavy gear and resulting sweat soaked back, and being able to pull the camera aka phone out, snap a pic, and keep on hiking, lead to far more shots I wouldn't of bothered otherwise taking if I had to pull out the camera from my bag.

Don't get me wrong, still plenty of use for a DSLR there, but really was more of a specialized tool for things a phone simply can't do, like astro shots. Going back, I'd pack 50% less camera gear, and 50% less clothing (bring pants and jacket if you go to the volcano for sunrise/sunset, gets to like 30 degrees and windy!)

Certainly not trying to start a smartphone photography thread, but, darn if they don't do pretty well these days. My old phone was an iPhone 5 and they've come a ways since that one. Long post short, take some DSLR gear, you'll find a use for it, but don't take the kitchen sink, less is really more, especially on vacation



Nov 05, 2017 at 05:10 PM
nick53097
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I found Nikon D500 and Sigma 17-70 Art as a light and very capable combo for family vacation


Nov 05, 2017 at 05:21 PM
Spectro
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I just had the same issue two weeks ago on a trip to Vancouver Island. My wife is very tolerant but does not share my passion for photography so it was not a photo trip but a vacation that photography did not monopolize.
My diliema was similar and we were going to have a car so I packed a small empty Tamron backpack in our checked luggage and brought a full size Lowe Pro backpack as a carry on. The D5 stayed at home but with this configuration the D850 had more lenses to play with.
When we were in the car everything went along but when we were on foot (lots of great hiking and beach walking) the small backpack and a smaller selection of lenses went along. I carried a 17-35, 70-200, 85 1.8, 50 1.4, 16 fisheye 1.4TC and flash in the backpack and picked and chose as I needed for the situation with the smaller backpack or just carried the camera on my shoulder.

Have a great time.



Nov 05, 2017 at 05:38 PM
millsart
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


One last bit of advise, with regards to photography vs enjoyment of a trip, is that I think its best not to go with any intentions of producing the iconic shot of any given scene. Odds are simply stacked so against you, where you have tens of thousands of visitors taking photos each and every day, and photographers who have the luxury of being able to live there and make dozens of attempts to capture the ideal conditions, that if you expect to produce anything exceptional your just putting undue and unrealistic pressure upon yourself.

Take the volcanoes park on the big island as an example. We've all seen some amazing shots of lava, and we'd all love to produce something along those lines, right ? So we bring the best camera we've got, we take the best tripod, best glass etc. We pay a fortune for a lava boat or hike 5 miles each way, and what do we end up with ? So stream with a redish hue venting into the ocean because that lava just isn't flowing that day.

That perfect shot of lava pouring into the sea, the perfect wave hitting it, at the perfect moment of sunset, may have been a one in a million shot. This isn't to say there is anything wrong with trying to capture another, but don't get your expectations too high.

Enjoy the trip, enjoy your travel company, enjoy being there, take the best photos you can of the beautiful things in front of you, but don't expect too much, or else you will end up kind of jaded, and the "failure" to produce stunning photos will result in viewing an otherwise enjoyable adventure as a disappointment.

The sunrise on the volcano I watched was amazing. I loved being there and witnessing it. However, I didn't get any photos I would honestly share on this website. They are cool, they got some facebook likes, but are they amazing enough for a landscape thread ? No, they look like what people shot each and everyday.

That is the reality, and it doesn't matter if you say your going to take nothing slower than f2.8 glass, want only the highest quality level possible, etc etc, the reality is your probably going to be taking technically excellent images of average at best scenes.

Again, average for Hawaii is still an amazing sunset by any other account, but are you likely to see the best conditions imaginable in the past 30 years on the island, on the one day your on the beach, camera in hand ? Probably not.

What is the solution ? Cancel all the plans so you can be on the beach every day until you get that perfect sunset ? Or, just make the best of what you get. If your on the beach, drink in hand, and the sunset is pretty, shoot it. Share it, remember it, but be realistic.

I kind of find the more gear I bring, the higher my "pressure" on myself is, and the more I need to feel like a working photographer, instead of someone on vacation. If a travel mag is paying me to produce stunning work, then I'll take everything I can carry, and devote all my time to the pursuit, BUT, if I'm the one paying for the airfare, the hotel, etc, and the main focus is to enjoy and relax, then sometimes its best to switch gears from the photographer mindset.

If nothing else, your sig. other will appreciate it, because while our spouses enjoy and support our hobby, standing around watching someone else bracket exposures for 45 minutes during sunset, focused only on the camera, isn't a very fun trip for them. Sometimes its better to put the camera down, put your arm around your spouse, and just enjoy the sunset.

Might make for a better memory than a 64gig SD card full of bracketed RAW exposures that is just going to end up stored away on an external HD, with a goal of editing "later" lol



Nov 05, 2017 at 06:11 PM
BCfromBC
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


When we went to Italy in March I took a D810, 24-120, 20mm 1.8 and 50mm 1.8. I agree that going with a FF kit is a great option for high quality, but given the great light you're going to have there you might want to reconsider taking your D500 as it is very light weight and you won't be in any dimly lit museums like I was! You might consider a 35mm 1.8 on the D500 as a normal lens for those evening lying around the pool moments but a 24-120 for a daily walkaround lens. As other posters have mentioned there are criticisms of this lens that I agree with but it's my go-to lens for casual moments. As for longer glass, you'd have to think about what kind of photos you'd be taking with longer glass. I don't know if you'd have occasion to use it. On our last trip to Hawaii when using my D810 I had my 14-24, 24-120 and 70-200. 24-120 was about 50% of the images with the other 50% split between the other two lenses (and almost all with the 70-200 were taken at a concert we went to). But looking at all images I took, I did use my phone a lot! And many of them were not bad! So go light. No one wants to haul a lot of stuff around on a relaxing vacation. On our next trip I'll take both bodies but will leave most stuff in my hotel room and I'm sure I'll use the D500 a lot.


Nov 05, 2017 at 06:28 PM
rick_reno
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I visit a few times a year, 10 years ago I'd carry a DSLR and various lenses. These days I pack up a V2 and a few lenses. No fuss, very little weight.


Nov 05, 2017 at 06:51 PM
90 5.0
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


Intravel all over the world for work and occasionally have time to site see.

I donít typically ever take heavy gear anymore.

D80, 18-55vr,55-200vr and 50 1.4 is my basic travel kit.

Iíll Throw it all in my laptop bag and have a small holster style bag thatís super old Iíll take usually.

Big heavy gear can be comber some and take away from the trip.
I do miss having my better stuff with me sometimes, but the pains of dragging it around outweigh the benifit s.

But i wouldnít buy anything new to take either just what ever body you have, a small zoom and a prime.

You can pick up a d80 for 100.00 these days , and 18-55vrís are cheap. You might enjoy that light package more since itís pretty darn compact and would fit in your purse anywhere you go



Nov 05, 2017 at 07:04 PM
uscmatt99
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I visit Maui with my family every year. You can do as much or as little photography as you want. I tend to travel with a lot of gear, with a few scenarios in mind.

1. Casual snaps- iPhone.
2. Small walk around- I can get by with a single prime, usually a 35mm on the camera body. These days it's a Sony A7 with a 35/2.8 rangefinder lens.
3. Purposeful photography outing- In this case I'll bring 3 lenses and the camera, as well as a tripod. These days it's Zeiss 25/2.8, 35/1.4, 100/2 on the Sony A7ii or the native 16-35/4, 55/1.8, 70-200/4. Filters, wireless shutter release, and panorama head.

I have a Nikon AW-1 that I bring as well, but it's mostly to shoot my kids cannon-balling into the pool. The scenery pictures aren't any better than I get with my iPhone, and I can't shoot underwater shots worth a darn it turns out.

My advice in your situation. Bring the D5 and zooms, and grab a 35/1.8. Then you're all set, and you can leave the big lenses in the room unless the need arises.



Nov 05, 2017 at 07:14 PM
Two23
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · DSLR for Maui Vacation


I keep waiting for Nikon to make a small 16mm f2.8. That paired with the Nikon 35mm f1.8dx and the 60mm macro with the D5500 would be the perfect travel system! Add the 300mm f4 PF + TC14 for wildlife. Unfortunately Nikon does not make a small 16mm f2.8. Maybe Sigma will!

I too have come to the conclusion that for me, photography is all about fun. It's no fun hauling heavy gear up Mt. Rainier in deep snow at 10,000 ft., or in a crowded local market. To me, a camera is the least important thing in photography. It's all about Vision and using Light.


Kent in SD



Nov 05, 2017 at 07:37 PM
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