Switching to full-frame - A LOT of questions!

milepostmilepost Big grinsNorth CarolinaRegistered Users Posts: 22 Big grins

I am wanting to transition to a full-frame camera. Right now I am shooting with two Nikon D7100 cameras. I am looking to buy two Nikon D750 cameras (I think?). These are my current lenses:

Nikon AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED
Nikon AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8G IF-ED
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 85mm f/1.8G
SIGMA 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM | Art
SIGMA 8-16mm F4.5-5.6 DC HSM
Tokina AT-X Pro SD 12-24mm F4 (IF) DX

From what I understand, only the 85mm will work with full frame, so the rest have to be replaced (I haven't used the 70-200mm in years, so I'm not worried about getting a FX equivalent, I just want to sell it). I mostly shoot outdoor portraits (large families to individuals) and realty (for builders, realtors, rental companies, etc.). Currently, when shooting portraits I'll use my 85mm and 17-55mm (or 18-35mm) on my two bodies. So I need a lens to replace my zooms that would be good for covering large groups. I was thinking maybe I'd get a prime lens instead of a zoom, but I don't know which prime would be best (or if I should even go that route). Here's a link to a sampling of my beach portraits: PORTRAITS

When shooting houses I use my 12-24mm for the large majority of my shots (and almost always at 12mm), I use the 8-16mm for tight spaces, really small bathrooms, etc., and I shoot the exteriors with my 17-55mm. So I'll need new wide-angle lenses. Since I'll be able to capture more with full frame, will I still need to shoot with a wide-angle and a super wide angle? Here's a link to a typical realty job: REALTY

So to recap, I want to go full-frame and I need help choosing new lenses. Thank you for reading this! Also, I am tempted to contact Adorama and see what they can do for me as far as trading in my old stuff and getting new stuff. I want to sell/trade two Nikon D7100 cameras, two Nikon D300 cameras, and these lenses above. Is Adorama the best way to go, or am I better off selling the pieces myself? THANK YOU for any help, I know there are a lot of questions in there.

Comments

  • NikonsandVstromsNikonsandVstroms *and Olympus Boston, MARegistered Users Posts: 990 Major grins
    edited January 17, 2018

    For portraits you'd need a 24-70 and there are a few choices out there I personally use the Tamron 24-70 F2.8 VC which is 900 and they have a newer model that's 1,200, there are also other 3rd party choices around this price range. The Nikon model is 1,800-2,400 depending on if you want VR or not. For something close to the 85 on your D7100 (which is equivalent to 127.5mm in FX) you'd need the Nikon 105 F1.4 or Sigma 135 F1.8. The Sigma is the closest and cheapest at 1,400, and the Nikon is 2,200.

    The Sigma 18-35 wont offer much over a 24-70 in terms of shallow depth of field, it'll be slightly thinner than a FX 2.8 but it's very, very close. But if you do want a bright lens they make a 24-35 F2 that's 1,000.

    For the wide angle lenses Sigma has a 12-24 with a similar aperture range as your 8-16 for 950 dollars and then an F4 version for 1,600 I don't have any experience with either so I can't comment on the image quality between them or VS your current 8-16. To replace the Tokina that brand also makes a 17-35 F4 for 450 dollars but in this focal length there are many newer options as well ranging from 750-1950.

    I usually sell my gear to KEH

    But the big question as someone who has owned a D7100, D7200, and D750 is what are you looking to get out of FX over DX? Also for your interior shots what apertures are you shooting them at?

  • milepostmilepost Big grins North CarolinaRegistered Users Posts: 22 Big grins

    Thank you for the reply! I will look into my options for a 24-70. I think I'm good with the 85, I would like to be able to get closer to my subjects with that one, actually. I keep reading your paragraph about wide angle lenses and I just can't decide which way to go, I guess I need to do some more reading on that one. I always shoot at F4 with my Tokina.

    The reason I want to switch is because I want to start selling larger wall prints to clients and do it with confidence. It seems like FF would be better suited for this. I shoot available light portraits nearing sunset and when I bump up the ISO when the light gets low I want less grain. I also like the idea of getting closer to my clients so I can better communicate with them and I'll get a shallower DoF. I'd also like to get a wider field of view when shooting interiors.

  • ziggy53ziggy53 Still learnin'still lovin Illinois cornfieldSuper Moderators Posts: 22,879 moderator
    edited January 17, 2018

    The Nikon AF-S VR Zoom-Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G IF-ED is an FX (Full-Frame/FF) lens and extremely useful for portraiture on an FX/FF body like the Nikon D750. With that singular lens you can go from a head-and-shoulders to a full-length shot just by zooming and maybe one step back (depending on the subject height). The f2.8 aperture will yield similar DOF to f2 on a DX body.

    I agree with Jonathan that a 24-70mm, f2.8 lens is very valuable for portraiture, group portraits in particular, and as a normal zoom for real estate photography.

    You can calculate the required focal lengths for yourself just by reviewing the EXIF of your toughest shoots, large and small, and multiplying the focal length used by your D7100 by 1.5x to achieve the same results in an FX/FF lens/body combination.

    You can use your existing DX lenses on the D750, and set the camera to DX 1.5x Crop Mode (nearly 11MPix), which may be enough for your needs, or you can keep a D7100 to use with the DX lenses. Some lenses may work well even using the DX 1.2x crop mode; you just have to test them yourself. Additionally, using your DX lenses in FX mode (FF capture) would allow you to crop in post, with a square crop yielding around 12 MPix or better.

    I suggest getting a single D750 body, or rent one, just to see how the larger form-factor sensor works in your method of shooting.

    ziggy53
    Moderator of the Cameras and Accessories forums
  • NikonsandVstromsNikonsandVstroms *and Olympus Boston, MARegistered Users Posts: 990 Major grins
    edited January 17, 2018

    @milepost said:
    Thank you for the reply! I will look into my options for a 24-70. I think I'm good with the 85, I would like to be able to get closer to my subjects with that one, actually. I keep reading your paragraph about wide angle lenses and I just can't decide which way to go, I guess I need to do some more reading on that one. I always shoot at F4 with my Tokina.

    The reason I want to switch is because I want to start selling larger wall prints to clients and do it with confidence. It seems like FF would be better suited for this. I shoot available light portraits nearing sunset and when I bump up the ISO when the light gets low I want less grain. I also like the idea of getting closer to my clients so I can better communicate with them and I'll get a shallower DoF. I'd also like to get a wider field of view when shooting interiors.

    The D750 will be a little sharper than the D7100/D7200 since the larger sensor isn't as demanding on the lens but it's not a night and day difference if you use high quality lenses. And with the 18-35 F1.8 you have one of the best zooms out there, and while a 24-70 F2.8 will have a more useful zoom range you can actually do better low light work with your F1.8.

    The D750 does seem like a giant step forward from the D7100 but when I got a D7200 the gap narrowed big time. That's not so much because of the better high ISO performance (which does help a little) but the lack of shadow noise. With a D7100 file if you're shooting at higher ISO and try to lift the shadows they can get ugly fast with noticeable banding. But both the D750/7200 can lift them without much detriment beyond the expected noise.

    Here's the other thing to think about, the difference between a D7200 and D750 is about a stop, but you could also get a 50 F1.4 and you'd effectively have the same improvement VS a D750 and your 85 F1.8.

    Now with FX you'd also be able to go down to F1.4 but that's a very thin depth of filed especially at 85mm, so I'd see how you like shooting the 85 F1.8 and if you'd want a F1.4 for your work. That's a matter of personal preference though so you'll have to try it out.

    For the wide angle real estate work I'd stick with the DX lenses since they seem to be working for you based on your portfolio. Going to FX will mean much larger gear and the reason I asked what aperture you use is that if F4 on FX is too narrow then to get the same depth of field as your current setup you need to go down a stop to F5.6 and now they're about the same in terms of image quality.

    I agree with Ziggy's idea of renting but I'd go a bit further since this is a huge change and investment:
    D750
    D7200
    Sigma 50 1.4 Art or Nikon 58 F1.4
    Whichever 24-70 F2.8 you're thinking about getting.

    This way you can really know what the differences are and see how much of an improvement you need for your work.

  • FergusonFerguson Major grins Registered Users Posts: 1,331 Major grins

    @milepost said:
    I am wanting to transition to a full-frame camera. Right now I am shooting with two Nikon D7100 cameras. I am looking to buy two Nikon D750 cameras (I think?). These are my current lenses:

    Just be sure that the reasons you are switching hold up to reality. The D750 is a nice camera, don't get me wrong, but I think the biggest difference you will see is wide angle shots are really wide. But "getting closer to my clients" is easily fixed with glass, no need for FX.

    FX also provides better high ISO, but the older D750 won't get you all that far, and an D810 (even a refurb) has some benefits of resolution with similar high ISO (and a D850 even moreso but a lot more money). You'll get noticable improvement there, but probably not what you expect (at least without going to a much more expensive body). For flat field images not needing DOF, wider apertures will help more. But also consider a few off camera flashes and poppers. Once you learn to set them up (not how to program especially, but where to place them) you can be read for evening shoots quickly, and make your own light while still getting the much brighter sky.

    So to me with your description of use, a FX is a good bet, but I would look at the glass even more. Especially wide, sharp glass. While quite pricey (and there are alternatives) an FX 14-24 will go a long way for interior shots - very low distortion and very wide on FX. There are also some very wide primes you might consider instead to get the real wide angle benefit of the FX.

    I'd also think about whether there is a next technology step to be supported by those lenses. For example, are you going to start doing any 360 pano tours when you do real estate shots? Really wide lenses (even a fisheye) helps a lot with those, plus you need a tripod and pano head and maybe some pano software (though there's good open source stuff for tours also).

    Modern bodies are all getting really good; think glass first.

    But also think "is there a next evolution of my work".

  • Brett1000Brett1000 Major grins https://www.flickr.com/photos/photoscw/Registered Users Posts: 819 Major grins
    edited January 22, 2018

    @Ferguson said:

    @milepost said:
    I am wanting to transition to a full-frame camera. Right now I am shooting with two Nikon D7100 cameras. I am looking to buy two Nikon D750 cameras (I think?). These are my current lenses:

    Just be sure that the reasons you are switching hold up to reality. The D750 is a nice camera, don't get me wrong, but I think the biggest difference you will see is wide angle shots are really wide. But "getting closer to my clients" is easily fixed with glass, no need for FX.

    I'd also think about whether there is a next technology step to be supported by those lenses. For example, are you going to start doing any 360 pano tours when you do real estate shots? Really wide lenses (even a fisheye) helps a lot with those, plus you need a tripod and pano head and maybe some pano software (though there's good open source stuff for tours also).

    Modern bodies are all getting really good; think glass first.

    But also think "is there a next evolution of my work".

    I agree, make sure your additional camera gear holds up to the "full frame" reality. You already have at least four cameras and various lenses, do you really need another camera and more lens ?
    if the answer is yes then B&H and Adorama offer a 30 day return policy and they pay for return shipping.- just in case those full frame pics don't look fabulously better!
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/mmirrorless

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