Best all around lens for a long trip?

dugmardugmar Registered Users Posts: 756 Major grins
edited December 25, 2004 in Cameras
If you were about to take a trip where you'd be backpacking a lot, say for... 2 weeks, and you wanted to travel light, and you could only take one lens for your digital Rebel, what lens would you take?

Prefer something that doesn't cost a ton, but would provide excellent results for an amatuer. I would be outside a lot, would want some telephoto capability but would also like to be shooting a wide array of subjects, from panoramics to people and everything in between.

Thanks,

Doug

Comments

  • pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,694 moderator
    edited November 18, 2004
    dugmar wrote:
    If you were about to take a trip where you'd be backpacking a lot, say for... 2 weeks, and you wanted to travel light, and you could only take one lens for your digital Rebel, what lens would you take?

    Prefer something that doesn't cost a ton, but would provide excellent results for an amatuer. I would be outside a lot, would want some telephoto capability but would also like to be shooting a wide array of subjects, from panoramics to people and everything in between.

    Thanks,

    Doug

    If I could Only take ONE lens for a 300D, I would,and do, take a Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 Di lens - it is inexpensive, small,( takes 67mm filters) and very sharp. I love my 24-70 f2.8L from Canon, but it is not small, light or inexpensive and requires fliters larger than 67mm.
    If I could add a second lens, I would add the Canon 70-300 DO IS. It also is small and light for what it offers. It takes 58mm filters. It is not inexpensive though.
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

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  • PerezDesignGroupPerezDesignGroup Registered Users Posts: 395 Major grins
    edited November 18, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    If I could Only take ONE lens for a 300D, I would,and do, take a Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 Di lens - it is inexpensive, small,( takes 67mm filters) and very sharp. I love my 24-70 f2.8L from Canon, but it is not small, light or inexpensive and requires fliters larger than 67mm.
    If I could add a second lens, I would add the Canon 70-300 DO IS. It also is small and light for what it offers. It takes 58mm filters. It is not inexpensive though.
    Great advice. I may actually be able to afford that Tamron sometime soon. It's nice to know there are other non-Canon lenses that have stepped up their game (and dropped their prices). thumb.gif
    Canon Digital Rebel | Canon EOS 35mm | Yashica Electro GSN | Fed5B | Holga 35 MF

  • pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,694 moderator
    edited November 18, 2004
    Great advice. I may actually be able to afford that Tamron sometime soon. It's nice to know there are other non-Canon lenses that have stepped up their game (and dropped their prices). thumb.gif

    The 50mm f1.8 Canon is inexpensive and very sharp.

    Another lens that gets very high marks is the Tamron 17-35 f2.8-4.0 Di - this is the wider version of the one I described above - and it shares the same characteristics - small, light, very sharp, and inexpensive relative to the comparable Canon lens. The Di lenses are at their best in DSLRs with the APS sized sensors, but are useable in full size sensor cameras.
    clap.gif
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

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  • PerezDesignGroupPerezDesignGroup Registered Users Posts: 395 Major grins
    edited November 18, 2004
    Wide...drool mwink.gif

    Slowly my Amazon wishlist grows.

    So far Amazon has been kind enough to buy me a new 50mm 1.8 MKII and new Tamrac Velocity 2 camera bag. Oh and 2 books on lighting and posing. Aren't they sweethearts?
    Canon Digital Rebel | Canon EOS 35mm | Yashica Electro GSN | Fed5B | Holga 35 MF

  • wxwaxwxwax Registered Users Posts: 15,471 Major grins
    edited November 18, 2004
    If I could only take one lens, it would have to be a zoom. I'd probably take the 24-70.
    Sid.
    Catapultam habeo. Nisi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane mittam
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  • dkappdkapp Registered Users Posts: 985 Major grins
    edited November 18, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    The 50mm f1.8 Canon is inexpensive and very sharp.

    Another lens that gets very high marks is the Tamron 17-35 f2.8-4.0 Di - this is the wider version of the one I described above - and it shares the same characteristics - small, light, very sharp, and inexpensive relative to the comparable Canon lens. The Di lenses are at their best in DSLRs with the APS sized sensors, but are useable in full size sensor cameras.
    clap.gif

    I have the Tamron 28-75 & 17-35 on my Nikon. They are both amazing lenses for the price. I'd have to say the 17-35 is the one I use the most.

    Dave
  • patch29patch29 Registered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 2,928 Major grins
    edited November 19, 2004
    What about the new Canon 17-85 IS? Does anyone have this lens? It would seem to be a very good compromise lens, while keeping the weight down. You could always carry a 50/1.8 to have a faster lens.
  • pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,694 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    patch29 wrote:
    What about the new Canon 17-85 IS? Does anyone have this lens? It would seem to be a very good compromise lens, while keeping the weight down. You could always carry a 50/1.8 to have a faster lens.

    Seems like a nice lens and IS is very welcome - but......it only works on DSLRs with an APS-sized sensor - that means it won't work on your 1D Patch!
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

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  • patch29patch29 Registered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 2,928 Major grins
    edited November 19, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    Seems like a nice lens and IS is very welcome - but......it only works on DSLRs with an APS-sized sensor - that means it won't work on your 1D Patch!

    I know, the original post was looking for an all around lens for a d-rebel. It would be a nice fit.

    I would not mind having the 28-300 IS for my cameras, not sure that I want to backpack with it though.
  • dugmardugmar Registered Users Posts: 756 Major grins
    edited November 19, 2004
    Thanks everyone!

    I think I may go with that Tamron 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di.

    Doug
  • DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    I can't believe no one mentioned the EF 28-135 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM !!!

    I have taken this lens off my camera about 2 times since I bought it from Andy several months ago. Its sharp, has IS, somewhat wide at 28, and reasonable stretch to 135. On a budget and space constraints, I don't see how you could pick anything else.
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


  • pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,694 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    DoctorIt wrote:
    I can't believe no one mentioned the EF 28-135 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM !!!

    I have taken this lens off my camera about 2 times since I bought it from Andy several months ago. Its sharp, has IS, somewhat wide at 28, and reasonable stretch to 135. On a budget and space constraints, I don't see how you could pick anything else.

    The reason I prefer the Tamron 28-75 Di over this lens is that the request was for ONE lens only and the Canon 28-135 is a great walk around lens, but not fast enough in aperature at the long end and is slightly more expensive.
    The 28-300 was also mentioned - these very wide range zooms tend to have three problems - not sharp, small aperatures at the long end limiting the ability to control depth of field, and they tend not to focus very close up. I have a 28-200mm zoom, and it really is not very sharp. A Tamron 28-300 I had for a Nikon also was just not very sharp at all compared to the Tamron 28-75 Di I mentioned earlier. I have given up on the wide range zooms - just too many optical compromises.
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
  • DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    pathfinder wrote:
    The reason I prefer the Tamron 28-75 Di over this lens is that the request was for ONE lens only and the Canon 28-135 is a great walk around lens, but not fast enough in aperature at the long end and is slightly more expensive.
    The 28-300 was also mentioned - these very wide range zooms tend to have three problems - not sharp, small aperatures at the long end limiting the ability to control depth of field, and they tend not to focus very close up. I have a 28-200mm zoom, and it really is not very sharp. A Tamron 28-300 I had for a Nikon also was just not very sharp at all compared to the Tamron 28-75 Di I mentioned earlier. I have given up on the wide range zooms - just too many optical compromises.
    good point, but from my experience, the IS on my lens really makes up the difference in the slightly smaller aperture at 135. and the extra 50mm is a pretty big difference. Not to mention this lens has a decent "macro" focusing ability - I believe I have no problem focusing down at 12-16". I totally agree with you on the long range zooms. I thought my EF 75-300 w/IS was great too, until I saw how much sharper this 28-135 is.
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


  • mercphotomercphoto Registered Users Posts: 4,550 Major grins
    edited November 19, 2004
    28-135
    DoctorIt wrote:
    good point, but from my experience, the IS on my lens really makes up the difference in the slightly smaller aperture at 135. and the extra 50mm is a pretty big difference. Not to mention this lens has a decent "macro" focusing ability - I believe I have no problem focusing down at 12-16". I totally agree with you on the long range zooms. I thought my EF 75-300 w/IS was great too, until I saw how much sharper this 28-135 is.

    I agree with nearly everything said above. I love the lens, and I too sold my 75-300/IS after using the 28-135. And yes, it focusing pretty close and the IS system works well.

    To me, my 28-135 is what I use most the time and if I had only one lens to travel with, that would be it.

    However, in low light, image stabilzation will not always save your butt. Hand-holding at 1/30th a second or less is great, but only if your subject matter is not moving either. Sometimes you simply need a faster shutter, and not just because you don't have a tri-pod. If that is what you need, the Tamron 28-75/2.8 is a great choice.
    Bill Jurasz - Mercury Photography - Cedar Park, TX
    A former sports shooter
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  • pathfinderpathfinder Super Moderators Posts: 14,694 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    DoctorIt wrote:
    good point, but from my experience, the IS on my lens really makes up the difference in the slightly smaller aperture at 135. and the extra 50mm is a pretty big difference. Not to mention this lens has a decent "macro" focusing ability - I believe I have no problem focusing down at 12-16". I totally agree with you on the long range zooms. I thought my EF 75-300 w/IS was great too, until I saw how much sharper this 28-135 is.

    Erik, your points are dead on - I bought the 28-135 IS for my wife and she will not let me borrow it either, darn it all. Lovely lens.
    The one problem that I have with these style lenses though, is that at the long end, the aperature is small, and does not allow shooting wide open - so you cannot limit depth of field very well - IS just does not blur the foreground and background like a bigger - say f2.8 - aperature. The extra 50mm length over the 28-75 Di, is paid for by the smaller aperature and less control of DOF. It is a trade off.

    Both are good choices - depends on what kind of images and subjects we will be photographing I think.

    And the Canon 75-300 IS shares the flaws I mentioned here. But I think it is head and shoulders above the Tamron 28-300 I owned.

    thumb.gif
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
  • dugmardugmar Registered Users Posts: 756 Major grins
    edited November 19, 2004
    Okay, totally confused and undecided again. :)
  • Steve CaviglianoSteve Cavigliano Super Moderators Posts: 3,599 moderator
    edited November 19, 2004
    Super thread!!!

    Lots of great opinions, regarding many nice lenses clap.gif This thread helped cement my decision on my last lens purchase (last lens purchase of 2004, of course....lol). I need something fairly wide and fast. I can't afford the 16-35mm, or the 24-70mm L's, right now. But the Tamron 28-75 F2.8 XR sounds like a super compromise. Not all that wide, but fast and fairly light. Plus, I've seen nothing but rave reviews about it. It should be a nice walk-around lens and come in handy for the occassional wedding/reception. I've got the kit lens to fall back on if I need 18-28mm. FWIW, I continue to be amazed by the quality of the images produced by this sub-$100 lens. I've paid more for filters....lol

    Thanks for all the lens info thumb.gif

    Steve
    SmugMug Support Hero
  • wingerwinger Registered Users Posts: 694 Major grins
    edited November 24, 2004
    DoctorIt wrote:
    I can't believe no one mentioned the EF 28-135 f/3.5-5.6 IS USM !!!

    I have taken this lens off my camera about 2 times since I bought it from Andy several months ago. Its sharp, has IS, somewhat wide at 28, and reasonable stretch to 135. On a budget and space constraints, I don't see how you could pick anything else.

    Yeah that is exactly what I was going to sugjest ( I had to have one once I saw erik had it) I use it alot, especially when I am just walking around with my camera (which I do alot)

    Althought I take mine off more than erik.
  • DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited November 26, 2004
    winger wrote:
    Yeah that is exactly what I was going to sugjest ( I had to have one once I saw erik had it) I use it alot, especially when I am just walking around with my camera (which I do alot)

    Althought I take mine off more than erik.
    If I had the 70-200 f/2.8 IS, I'd take it off more too umph.gif
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


  • dugmardugmar Registered Users Posts: 756 Major grins
    edited December 21, 2004
    Thanks again everyone. Well I sold my Sigma 135-400 4.5/5.6 and bought a new Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM with the money and $200 I made from a magazine shoot.

    ef70-200_4lu_586x225.jpg

    Gotta love it, no money out of pocket and I upgraded to my first L glass. What a lens. I cannot get over the difference. And its light, not too long, perfect for travel.

    Thanks again.

    Doug

    13014013-L.jpg
  • DoctorItDoctorIt Administrators Posts: 11,951 moderator
    edited December 22, 2004
    dugmar wrote:
    Thanks again everyone. Well I sold my Sigma 135-400 4.5/5.6 and bought a new Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM with the money and $200 I made from a magazine shoot.



    Gotta love it, no money out of pocket and I upgraded to my first L glass. What a lens. I cannot get over the difference. And its light, not too long, perfect for travel.

    Thanks again.

    Doug
    If you call that lens not too long, I'd hate to see what else you have in your arsenal... :D

    It is an awesome lens though, congrats!
    Erik
    moderator of: The Flea Market [ guidelines ]


  • philspacephilspace Registered Users Posts: 59 Big grins
    edited December 22, 2004
    I've got both the Tamron 28-70 F2.8 XRDi and the Canon 17-85 EFS IS and it would be a tough call.

    I really like having an F2.8 lense and tend to use it indoors at family get togethers, but if I could bring a strobe too, it would only bring the Canon.
  • luckyrweluckyrwe Registered Users Posts: 952 Major grins
    edited December 25, 2004
    If I had but one lens to carry I'd no doubt choose the wrong one. I'd probably go with a 24-70/2.8L lens.

    One thing I did a long time ago was go to Disneyland (annual pass holder) every weekend with a different lens. I'd go one day with the Nikon 8mm/2.8, another day with a 50mm, and another day with a 500mm. This teaches me to see in that lenses format, so if I am ever "stuck" with one lens I can think in that frame of mind, so to speak.

    I love that McLaren picture! Got the technical details on the shot? I never seem to have a good depth of field most of the time.
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