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Lens for Petra & Cairo

  
 
Dwanner33
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I am heading to Jerusalem, Petra and Cairo and I am looking for lens suggestions for the major tourist sites. I shoot an A1 body and have much more experience with bird and wildlife photography, so this will be a new type of photography experience for me. Thanks in advance for any advice!


Aug 05, 2022 at 10:27 PM
mudlake
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Wow. Sounds like a great trip.

If it were me, Iíd take a two lens kit: a Sigma or Sony 24-70/2.8 and either the CV 15/4.5 or the Sony 12-24/4. Youíd be very flexible in any situation.



Aug 05, 2022 at 10:54 PM
itai195
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I'd take a Tamron 28-200 and also something fast and wide Ė like a 20/1.8 or a 16-35/2.8 zoom. In the old city, for example, spaces are very tight and light tends to be low.


Aug 05, 2022 at 10:59 PM
mudlake
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Lens for Petra & Cairo




itai195 wrote:
I'd take a Tamron 28-200 and also something fast and wide Ė like a 20/1.8 or a 16-35/2.8 zoom. In the old city, for example, spaces are very tight and light tends to be low.


When you say there is not enough time to focus a CV lens, what do you mean? For people images? Can you clarify?



Aug 05, 2022 at 11:05 PM
ftllens
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I think he means just speed of the lens since low light. 20 1.8 would be good or even better would be the 14 1.8 since you won't be needing filters (except maybe UV for the dust) for those scenes anyway and you can crop in with the A1 and more stuff will be in focus without stopping down.

Unrelated maybe get a pair of Etymotic Research ER20 High-Fidelity Earplugs or something similar lol



Aug 05, 2022 at 11:53 PM
NJPhotographer
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Depends on what sort of photos you want to create, of course. I think a 24mm & 35mm will photograph major tourist sites very nicely. Or a mid-range zoom if you don't want to change lenses.


Aug 06, 2022 at 12:22 AM
Dwanner33
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Would you take the 24-70/2.8 with for potential portrait opportunities or what application would that lens be best suited for? Also what focus area would typically be used for tourist sites like the Sphinx, Pyramids at Giza, Treasury at Petra, etc., sorry this type of photography is completely new to me, Iím used to birds shot through large prime lenses.

mudlake wrote:
Wow. Sounds like a great trip.

If it were me, Iíd take a two lens kit: a Sigma or Sony 24-70/2.8 and either the CV 15/4.5 or the Sony 12-24/4. Youíd be very flexible in any situation.



Edited on Aug 06, 2022 at 06:06 AM · View previous versions



Aug 06, 2022 at 05:59 AM
Dwanner33
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Is it necessary to use a tripod for typical landscape shots, Iím thinking of picking up the 20/1.8 or something wider for panoramic desert shots or wide shots of the pyramids and from what Iíve read, tripods are not allowed in some of the major tourist area. Also what AF setting is best for shots of this nature and f stop is typically used (I know this can vary, but just looking for a general starting point). Thanks in advance!

itai195 wrote:
I'd take a Tamron 28-200 and also something fast and wide Ė like a 20/1.8 or a 16-35/2.8 zoom. In the old city, for example, spaces are very tight and light tends to be low.




Aug 06, 2022 at 06:05 AM
Alan Parker
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I'd take a fast-ish wide angle zoom and a standard zoom. Maybe even a smallish 35 for the busiest streets. I personally wouldn't want to walk around Cairo with an A1 and a giant lens on it.
I'm very envious of your itinerary.



Aug 06, 2022 at 06:07 AM
johnvanr
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Never been to Jerusalem, so canít address that city. In CaÔro, you want to carry as little as possible, because youíll be harassed all the time by people trying to make money off of you (understandable, but nonetheless really tiresome). For Petra, you want something really wide for the entrance and the Treasury but later a wide to normal zoom works, as the valley opens up. I wouldnít count on doing much portrait photography in either Cairo (see above) or Petra. Petra is really just the ancient site and most locals there will be the ones offering you donkey, horse or camel rides. The real town nearby is Wadi Musa. Petra is unforgettable, so even without a camera, it will be etched into your mind forever. Enjoy!



Aug 06, 2022 at 07:56 AM
 


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johnvanr
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Dwanner33 wrote:
Is it necessary to use a tripod for typical landscape shots, Iím thinking of picking up the 20/1.8 or something wider for panoramic desert shots or wide shots of the pyramids and from what Iíve read, tripods are not allowed in some of the major tourist area. Also what AF setting is best for shots of this nature and f stop is typically used (I know this can vary, but just looking for a general starting point). Thanks in advance!



I wouldnít take a tripod at all.



Aug 06, 2022 at 07:59 AM
ramesesthe2nd
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Take An ultrawide lens (e.g., 20G) and a mid-range zoom. I would take fast lenses as indoor tourist places are dark and often don't allow flash and cameras at all. I went to Cairo some 10 or 12 years ago and they had guards in tombs to make sure people were not photographing hieroglyphics on walls, etc. I took most of my pictures ninja style from waist height.

Take a compact tripod with you, like gorilla pod (but something of higher quality) and you should be good with everything. A compact tripod will also allow you to take selfies without handing your expensive camera over to a random person. Honestly, it is such an awesome trip. You wouldn't want to ruin it with tons of gear on your back. Go as light as possible.



Aug 06, 2022 at 08:21 AM
Dwanner33
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Thank you very much for all of the information, would you recommend the 14/1.8 GM or 20mm f/1.8 GM for wide angle shots? Or would something like the 12-24/2.8 GM be a good choice, Iíve always used prime lenses, but that was for a different application and the 12-24/2.8 GM seems to have very good reviews. For the wide to normal zoom, would the 24-70/2.8 GM II be a good choice. Last but not least, what AF settings would you typically use, wide or zone for example and are these type of pictures taken in AF-S or AF-C? Sorry about all of the questions, Iím trying to absorb as much information as possible prior to my trip!


johnvanr wrote:
Never been to Jerusalem, so canít address that city. In CaÔro, you want to carry as little as possible, because youíll be harassed all the time by people trying to make money off of you (understandable, but nonetheless really tiresome). For Petra, you want something really wide for the entrance and the Treasury but later a wide to normal zoom works, as the valley opens up. I wouldnít count on doing much portrait photography in either Cairo (see above) or Petra. Petra is really just the ancient site and most locals there will be the ones offering you donkey, horse
...Show more



Aug 06, 2022 at 08:51 AM
johnvanr
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


Dwanner33 wrote:
Thank you very much for all of the information, would you recommend the 14/1.8 GM or 20mm f/1.8 GM for wide angle shots? Or would something like the 12-24/2.8 GM be a good choice, Iíve always used prime lenses, but that was for a different application and the 12-24/2.8 GM seems to have very good reviews. For the wide to normal zoom, would the 24-70/2.8 GM II be a good choice. Last but not least, what AF settings would you typically use, wide or zone for example and are these type of pictures taken in AF-S or AF-C? Sorry about
...Show more

The 20mm or a 24mm. With 14mm, you're just dealing with too many distortions. The zoom would be fine too. Just looked back at my Petra images, which were shot on an APS-C sensor at the time: the 35mm (the full-frame equivalent of my wide angle) wasn't wide enough for the Treasury, but once outside the narrow valley, I shot the mountain side with anything up to 70mm.

It's digital, just fool around with the AF zones and see what works best for you. I'm generally wary of all spots, because I like more control, but it may work for you. Since you can see the results right away, do what you prefer. And you have opportunity to practice before you leave. While the structures in the Middle East may look unique, from an AF perspective they're pretty much identical to similar sized structures anywhere. Same for people, the AF works the same in the US as in the Middle East.



Aug 06, 2022 at 10:58 AM
itai195
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I wouldnít bother with a tripod. Theyíre either not allowed or just too bulky to deal with in most of these places. If you are doing the Petra at night thing, you might want a small travel tripod for that. Otherwise stick to an f2.8 or faster lens and I think youíll be fine. The speed isnít needed so much for Petra, but for some of the darker and more cramped spaces in Jerusalem and Cairo itíll be handy.

Regarding manual focus - it depends on what you want to shoot. Thereís a lot of hustle and bustle in some of these areas I just prefer to autofocus since I can work faster. Prefocusing a MF lens can work except that you may be at pretty wide open apertures in some locations, so itíd be more difficult to be accurate. If your aim is to focus more on things that donít move, a MF lens would be fine. Just my subjective opinion there, I know other folks are a lot more proficient with MF lenses than I am.

I was last in Petra in 2008 and back then all I had was a D300 and an 18-200 lens. The tele end actually does come in handy since there are details in the distant mountainsides you may want to capture. But I definitely missed having something a bit wider than my 27mm equivalent. I think a 20 would be fine. A 12-24/2.8 is a bit large to carry around in these spots for me - I would prefer the Sigma 14-24 or the 16-28. I canít understate how hot the conditions can be - my suggestion would be to travel light.

Dwanner33 wrote:
Is it necessary to use a tripod for typical landscape shots, Iím thinking of picking up the 20/1.8 or something wider for panoramic desert shots or wide shots of the pyramids and from what Iíve read, tripods are not allowed in some of the major tourist area. Also what AF setting is best for shots of this nature and f stop is typically used (I know this can vary, but just looking for a general starting point). Thanks in advance!





Aug 06, 2022 at 11:52 AM
jwpstl
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


We have different ideas of travel. No way Iím taking an A1, GM lenses, and a tripod on an overseas trip unless Iím being paid to bring back pro images. If it were my vacation Iíd take something like the A7 III, A7C, or possibly A7r III, the tamron 17-28 and 28-200 lenses and thatís it. Not too heavy and not so valuable. I might also toss in the Samyang 35 or 45 1.8 for an indoor lower light lens because they add very little weight to the bag.


Aug 06, 2022 at 12:14 PM
Dwanner33
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I travel internationally with my A1 and big prime lenses frequently as itís the only way to capture the type of wildlife shots Iím after on my typical trips. This trip the big primes are unnecessary but the A1 and other GM lenses will be coming with, nothing risked, nothing gained plus having the proper insurance coverage takes most of the risk out of the equation.

jwpstl wrote:
We have different ideas of travel. No way Iím taking an A1, GM lenses, and a tripod on an overseas trip unless Iím being paid to bring back pro images. If it were my vacation Iíd take something like the A7 III, A7C, or possibly A7r III, the tamron 17-28 and 28-200 lenses and thatís it. Not too heavy and not so valuable. I might also toss in the Samyang 35 or 45 1.8 for an indoor lower light lens because they add very little weight to the bag.




Aug 06, 2022 at 01:00 PM
Mucho Betis
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


I travel with the A1, 12-24 GM 2.8 and the incredibly amazing razor sharp and light Samyang 135 1.8.

Do not worry about focus, just AF-S and zone.

Enjoy your trip and stay safe!



Aug 06, 2022 at 02:19 PM
dbehrens
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


You are on your own to crawl all over the place at Petra so an UWA like a 14-24 would make a good choice. That plus a 24-70 or a 24-105 should cover most of your needs.


Aug 07, 2022 at 04:44 PM
Taylor Sherman
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Lens for Petra & Cairo


14-24 is good for Petra, though longer is also useful. I split between an 18mm and 52mm (12 and 35 on APS-C).

Cairo I think I used similar lenses, but looks like I used the 15mm Fisheye more than the 18 (both were the old sony 16mm APS-C pancake with the snap-on UWA/Fisheye adapters).




Aug 07, 2022 at 06:30 PM
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