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06-11-2011, 10:19 AM   #1
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Prime Lens Owners - How often you use your zooms?

This is a question to people with Prime Lens Owners - How often you use your zooms?

Personally I find that my Tamron 28-75/17-50 remains unused and I most of the time pickup prime whenever I am on road, the small size is one of the key advantage of k-x and I prefer to maintain that.

Just wondering, is this common among who owns a few primes? Or am I under utilizing my two good zooms? Under what circumstances you pickup zooms over your primes?

Thanks for your inputs

Yusuf

06-11-2011, 10:43 AM   #2
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I have 2 fine zooms. Not top quality but very useable, good quality.
My K45-125 is only out of the closet when I make pictures of horseriding or candids.
My DA16-45 is hardly ever used. I thought I would make pictures on city trips with it.
But I love my m primes, K primes and Voigtlander primes that much I chose them 90% of the time.
It's a matter of loving to work with primes and knowing that the result will be optimal
and predictable in the sence that all individual primes have their own character.
06-11-2011, 10:51 AM   #3
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I use both depending upon what I am doing. If I am in a studio doing portrait work I'm more likely to be using primes. I like using my 50/55MM, 105MM, 135MM for that. But I use the zooms a lot when I am outside strolling about taking pics. I don't like taking my primes out where they could get easily damaged and I like more of a reach when I am outside.
06-11-2011, 10:59 AM   #4
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Not very often and currently only own 1 af zoom for pentax and 1 for e-p1.

06-11-2011, 11:02 AM   #5
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I have 18 zooms: 8 AFL's and 10 MFL's. (And another 190+ other lenses.) The AFL's don't see that much use, except the Sears-Tokina 55-135/3.5 and Vivitar-Kiron S1V1 709-210/3.5. Those are special. The AF's each have their special place, usually for when I expect dynamic situations, like traveling. Then the Tammy 10-24, DA18-250, Lil'Bigma 170-500 have their day. Other specialized situation call for the DA10-17 FE, F35-70, and FA100-300 (silver).

But my lens-of-the-day walkarounds are various primes, all but one being MFL's. (The exception: FA50/1.4.) Each one sees a LOT of use during its day or three. Studio-type shots may require zoom or prime, depending. Hell, almost ANYTHING may require zoom or prime, depending. In enclosed dim spaces it's the 16/2.8 or 24/2 or 28/2, whereas a not-so-dim space may enjoy the Tammy 10-24. It just depends...
06-11-2011, 11:14 AM   #6
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With my K-x i use primes most of time (28-35-50), i only use the 18-55 when i do some climbing/bouldering shots.

i prefer prime for everyday, because i pay more attention to everything else than focusing.

Moreover i'm use to shoot with some SLR with a 50 or 35mm, so i really get use to primes.
06-11-2011, 11:34 AM   #7
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I have no need of zooms.

If I was shooting say sports, where the subject moves quickly across a large area and needs to be captured no matter where they are, and I can't move with them, then obviously that's a Zoom job. However for anything less fast paced, they are more limiting I feel.

A prime you have your framing in mind already as you're constrained by the Focal length, so when you find something you want to shoot it either wors or i tdoesn't. You don't stand there twiddling the zoom till it fits in the frame, you move about, you look see what potential there is to fill the frame youhave got with something interesting.

I have 5 primes and 1 zoom. 99% of the time I shoot with the primes.
06-11-2011, 11:39 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by yusuf Quote
Just wondering, is this common among who owns a few primes? Or am I under utilizing my two good zooms? Under what circumstances you pickup zooms over your primes?
I prefer primes for speed and size, but zooms for flexibility when I don't really know what I'm going up against.

For shooting snapshots, I'll take my kit lens. When I know I want drama, I'll carry my DA 15. Low light / low-dof, or portrait, the FA 50 gets a nod. And when I'm not sure I'll be able to get close / for shooting people, the F 70 - 210 comes out.

It's all very subject dependent. I find carrying only primes very limiting unless I have full control over my subjects. The less control I have, the more I favour the zooms.

06-11-2011, 11:43 AM   #9
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Only at the zoo, and thats just for a short bit.
06-11-2011, 11:47 AM - 2 Likes   #10
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What is a zoom lens? Are they any good? At what?
06-11-2011, 11:52 AM   #11
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I find that I use zoom lenses often because most of my photography is outdoors with good lighting: landscape, aircraft, street, etc. I stick with faster primes for dim light and when I want to restrict my composition to a single focal length.
06-11-2011, 12:39 PM   #12
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I have 3 zooms: M 75~150/4, M 80~200/4.5 and the DA* 16~50/2.8. To be frank I can't recall the last time either of the M series zooms were on a camera. The DA* 16~50 sees only moderate use as I prefer primes for almost every application.

Tom G
06-11-2011, 01:07 PM   #13
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I've got some very good zooms and some killer primes and think paperbag pretty much nailed it:

QuoteOriginally posted by paperbag846 Quote
I prefer primes for speed and size, but zooms for flexibility when I don't really know what I'm going up against.
except I'd add IQ to the advantages of primes
06-11-2011, 01:10 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
I have 18 zooms: 8 AFL's and 10 MFL's. (And another 190+ other lenses.) ..

I think we have found the poster boy for the LBA helpline poster.
06-11-2011, 01:23 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by dadipentak Quote
except I'd add IQ to the advantages of primes
Not always. Not as much as you would think.

I mean, my FA 77 and F 70-210 look pretty much the same at f8.

Besides, I think the whole "IQ" thing is over rated. It's more important to be holding the correct tool in your hand to capture the event in front of you.

An interesting image will be good enough that "IQ" would be lost on the viewer. It's only with boring images that you would really begin to pick up on things like sharpness, bokeh rendering, etc.

IMHO, of course. Primes shine in the specific instances that you are going to be less than f2.8... but otherwise, modern zooms have got it, man.
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