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Thread: Prime or Zoom?

  1. #1

    Default Prime or Zoom?

    I have been using prime lenses since film days and i am very satisfied with my prime lens line ups as of the moment but sometimes when i travel i dont want to carry so much with me.

    The only zoom lens that i have is a 24-70mm f/2.8L which i seldom use. based on my comparison between my 50mm f/1.4 and 85mm f/1.2L against my zoom.. I find the 24-70mm f/2.8L a bit softer than my primes and washed.. just a very bit.. considering my 50mm is not an L grade lens. is it just me or just my lens?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    note that these are for aps-c.

    photozone.de tests on 50mm f/1.4 canon (mtf)



    24-70 f/2.8 L



    85mm f/1.2 L



    go bananas!

  3. #3

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Well you are already experienced and know what you want and you already got prime lens that serve your needs. Pretty obvious to me.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    you shld try the 24-70mm zoom, anyway it will not make a lot of difference since nowadays ISO can be bumped up to so high

  5. #5

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by night86mare View Post
    note that these are for aps-c.

    photozone.de tests on 50mm f/1.4 canon (mtf)

    go bananas!
    I guess i will stick to my motto then "ALL PRIMES". My 50mm lens has been my walk around lens and has served me good and has been one of my all time favorite lenses. nowadays canon has improved so much on their zooms. impressive improvement actually. maybe one day we just woke up that zoom lenses will level with primes which i doubt wont happen in my lifetime.

    Very nice review in photozone though but sometimes reviews doesn't convince me so much so i may need to try ask people who has experienced it so far..

    Thanks

  6. #6

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by winmacuser View Post
    you shld try the 24-70mm zoom, anyway it will not make a lot of difference since nowadays ISO can be bumped up to so high
    i have this but i dont use it so much so i am planning to sell it next week
    i want to get the 35mm instead.

  7. #7
    Senior Member CS TAN's Avatar
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    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by laposto View Post
    i have this but i dont use it so much so i am planning to sell it next week
    i want to get the 35mm instead.
    If you love primes, you will love the 35L.

    For me, I will still keep one walk around zoom for those occasions that I want to travel light. Like going in a tour group overseas.
    Canon 5D Mark II | 24-105L | 35L | 85L II | 135L | Samyang 14mm 2.8

  8. #8
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    primes zooms own each of their places in shooting.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by giantcanopy View Post
    primes zooms own each of their places in shooting.
    Agree. Btw the 50/1.4 though not "L" grade but its an extremely good performer and a very under-rated lens.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by giantcanopy View Post
    primes zooms own each of their places in shooting.
    And which place would that be?

    Flexibility is the only thing i see with zooms.. nothing more nothing lens. it will help you not to carry to much primes thus it make us lazy most of the time.

    i dunno if this incident have happened to you but for me sometimes this thing happens.
    have you ever went home and take a look at the photos you shot and said "DARN! If i only have my 1.2 or 1.4 this image would have been perfect."

    I guess zooms are based in an all in one solution but still cannot be compared with the primes in terms of quality so i guess you are right with places in shooting considering in primes we need to FOOT ZOOM where in zoom lenses we can just stay in our position.

  11. #11
    Senior Member giantcanopy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by laposto View Post
    And which place would that be?

    Flexibility is the only thing i see with zooms.. nothing more nothing lens. it will help you not to carry to much primes thus it make us lazy most of the time.

    i dunno if this incident have happened to you but for me sometimes this thing happens.
    have you ever went home and take a look at the photos you shot and said "DARN! If i only have my 1.2 or 1.4 this image would have been perfect."

    I guess zooms are based in an all in one solution but still cannot be compared with the primes in terms of quality so i guess you are right with places in shooting considering in primes we need to FOOT ZOOM where in zoom lenses we can just stay in our position.

    Like what u mentioned, flexibility is the greatest asset of a zoom, and there is always a give and take. for larger apertures, u definitely dun get much options with zooms.

    As for the footzoom and zoom thing, ... i must say I ain too passionate about such issues. For me it is more gratifying to nab that shot.

    btw I am a heavy user of manual prime lenses but i do have my share of using zooms. and of course there are situations when i hope i have one over the other.

    ryan

  12. #12

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by giantcanopy View Post
    Like what u mentioned, flexibility is the greatest asset of a zoom, and there is always a give and take. for larger apertures, u definitely dun get much options with zooms.

    As for the footzoom and zoom thing, ... i must say I ain too passionate about such issues. For me it is more gratifying to nab that shot.

    btw I am a heavy user of manual prime lenses but i do have my share of using zooms. and of course there are situations when i hope i have one over the other.

    ryan
    Roger that Ryan!

    but sometimes dissapointing when u get back home especially when u compare the shots with your primes.

    what to do? so i think its right to keep one zoom all the time.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Numnumball's Avatar
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    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    IMo, Primes makes u work harder to get the shot u want, as all u have is your pair of legs to move in/out to get the kinda framing/conmposition, which help u in improving. But Zooms though not essential but is indispendsable in situations where u do not have the luxury of getting that frame u need. (Take last year super import nights for instance, hw to shoot XMM models with primes in a swarmed situation (surrounded by seh pei pei) where u can hardly move... think most who went have zooms attached to their cam bodies).

    I am the lazy sort, 80% of my gear is zoom, (but i shoot almost everything, so flexibitly is crucial) but that's just me. However do agree for certain type of work, primes deliver better output (portraiture).
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  14. #14

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by ikilledversace View Post
    Agree. Btw the 50/1.4 though not "L" grade but its an extremely good performer and a very under-rated lens.
    ya lah.. i feel the same about tis lens. i dunno what canon thinking when they make e lens. actually if you will think of it.. the quality of the 50mm 1.4 is already L but not the body i guess. its not tat weather sealed compared to the L ones. but the question is... why
    buy the 1.2 when 1.4 is perfect? in my opinion i don't really see the help that much of that extra stop considering 1.4 is ok already.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Numnumball View Post
    IMo, Primes makes u work harder
    errr harder better mah.. ask the ladies

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    I found changing lenses to be a chore after a while.
    There is no prime or zoom argument. You pick the one that suits the situation best.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Worried of composition with prime? 5d2 offers so much flexibility in cropping

  18. #18

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by Numnumball View Post
    IMo, Primes makes u work harder to get the shot u want, as all u have is your pair of legs to move in/out to get the kinda framing/conmposition, which help u in improving. But Zooms though not essential but is indispendsable in situations where u do not have the luxury of getting that frame u need. (Take last year super import nights for instance, hw to shoot XMM models with primes in a swarmed situation (surrounded by seh pei pei) where u can hardly move... think most who went have zooms attached to their cam bodies).

    I am the lazy sort, 80% of my gear is zoom, (but i shoot almost everything, so flexibitly is crucial) but that's just me. However do agree for certain type of work, primes deliver better output (portraiture).
    agree
    5D3|1740L|70200F4L|40

  19. #19

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Think it is very much a personal preference thing. Generally (but of course not always the case) primes would give a better IQ but lose the flexibility of the range. Typically they would also be smaller and lighter. So which would you rather have at this point in time.

    I love my primes and seldom if ever use the zoom.
    OM-D 12-50 20 f1.7 45 f1.8 : Canon 7D 35 f1.4L 85 f1.2L 70-200 f2.8 ISL 17-55 f2.8 430EXII

  20. #20

    Default Re: Prime or Zoom?

    Quote Originally Posted by chalib View Post
    Worried of composition with prime? 5d2 offers so much flexibility in cropping

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