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07-26-2013, 07:32 PM   #1
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prime question

I know a lot rides on personal taste but, if you already have a 50mm prime, which would you consider the wiser purchase as a next lens, 28mm or 35mm? I have really used prime lens yet and technically the 50 is still on the way. I've only been using zooms.

07-26-2013, 07:45 PM   #2
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For APS-C I'd recommend getting a 35mm as it's closer to a normal focal length (like a 50mm on film).

Adam
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07-26-2013, 08:05 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Trudger1272 Quote
I know a lot rides on personal taste but, if you already have a 50mm prime, which would you consider the wiser purchase as a next lens, 28mm or 35mm? I have really used prime lens yet and technically the 50 is still on the way. I've only been using zooms.

A 28mm prime and 50mm prime make for a nice 1-2 punch lens combo. That is what I used, and it worked really well for me.

28mm on APSC format is = 42mm on full frame, which is right in between 35mm and 50mm. A real sweet spot if you will.

One limiting factor here is the availability of 28mm primes. If you want autofocus, be prepared to try and hunt down the F 28 or FA 28. They do pop up in the marketplace every now and then.

There is at least one really common 35mm prime (the DA 35 2.4) which is a great lens, and a couple of other better but more expensive options (DA 35 2.8 ltd, FA 35 f2). Lots of third-party lenses too.
07-26-2013, 08:38 PM   #4
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I liked 28-50 until I picked up the DA40, now for me it's smc-a 24 and Limiteds 40 & 70. I like enough space to allow fairly easy decision-making and let a smidge of cropping fill the spaces in between.

07-26-2013, 08:47 PM   #5
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Its a tricky one. All I can add is I have the FA31 and its just about right in terms of width ( a cheaper option is the Sigma 30 1.4 of course but it is quite a different lens). Had it been 35mm it would have been annoying.
I would really like a 40 and/or a 50mm lens in the near future as I do miss that length, I tend to see shots in a more tele way.
I don't know if that helps!
07-26-2013, 10:50 PM   #6
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I've been happily using 28 + 50 combo. Recently I also acquired a couple of Taks - 35mm and 55mm. 35mm is tighter than 28mm, but I found myself often cropping 28mm pics, so it might work out ok. Plus my S-M-C Tak 35/3.5 might be a bit sharper than any of my 28's. I'll have to do a shoot out some time.
07-26-2013, 11:44 PM   #7
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A 28mm is equivalent to 42mm of FF, and (to me) the 28mm "feels" more like a 35mm on FF. And (thus for me) the 28 mm is an excellent street shooting/general scenery lens. It is my general/most used FL, and the only lens when I want to be really light.

And the 50mm (equivalent to FF 75 mm) is like a portrait lens. If I carry two lenses--it's 28mm and 50mm. And thus the 35mm is not something I use much.
07-27-2013, 01:34 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone, all taken into consideration.

QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
For APS-C I'd recommend getting a 35mm as it's closer to a normal focal length (like a 50mm on film).
This was something I was always uncertain about.

So I guess the order will be FA 35, FA 28 and then DA 15 or 14.

07-27-2013, 02:04 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Trudger1272 Quote
I know a lot rides on personal taste but, if you already have a 50mm prime, which would you consider the wiser purchase as a next lens, 28mm or 35mm? I have really used prime lens yet and technically the 50 is still on the way. I've only been using zooms.
It would help if you say what you like to shoot and why the 50 isn't meeting your needs.
07-27-2013, 11:00 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Trudger1272 Quote
28mm or 35mm?
You've got the 50, I'd go 28 or even wider 15, 20 or even 24, but so much depends on your style and type of photography.
07-27-2013, 11:22 AM   #11
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I tried Pentax DA 35/2, 4 but I was too close to the Pentax smcF 50/1, 7, on the K30 I used Pentax smcF 28/2, 8 and Pentax smcF 50/1, 7 on one entire wedding party, one for all what should widely another for portraits, I would have Pentax FA20 / 2.8 (Pentax FA24 / 2) in combination with 50/1, 7 then had the perfect combination because we still miss wide and should be used to Pentax DA 12-24/4,

Last edited by mbukal; 07-27-2013 at 11:30 AM.
07-27-2013, 02:13 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by JohnX Quote
It would help if you say what you like to shoot and why the 50 isn't meeting your needs.
I like landscape and street photography more than anything so far. As for the 50, it hasn't arrived yet. I'm sure it'll work fine.

QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
but so much depends on your style and type of photography.
That's what I need to develop. So I need a lot of experimentation. Up until last February I spent my life running from cameras.

Okay, I see I'm being a bit hasty. The 28 50 combo apparently works great since that's most of what I'm seeing here. I think my biggest concern was having the closest to normal focal length lens first, which may not be the most important.

I know a wide lens would be very useful to me, in fact so useful I can't make a decision on which one to get first:
"Zoom or prime? Okay prime. 15 or 14? 15. But wait a minute, couldn't I do more with a zoom? Yeah! I think I need a zoom. But wait...!"
Makes me feel insane, but this may be lack of experience. (I hope!)

The err in my first post was I should've said "I haven't used a prime lens yet. I've only been using my kit zooms."

Last edited by Trudger1272; 07-27-2013 at 02:15 PM. Reason: error
07-28-2013, 02:06 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Trudger1272 Quote
I like landscape and street photography more than anything so far. As for the 50, it hasn't arrived yet. I'm sure it'll work fine.


That's what I need to develop. So I need a lot of experimentation. Up until last February I spent my life running from cameras.

Okay, I see I'm being a bit hasty. The 28 50 combo apparently works great since that's most of what I'm seeing here. I think my biggest concern was having the closest to normal focal length lens first, which may not be the most important.

I know a wide lens would be very useful to me, in fact so useful I can't make a decision on which one to get first:
"Zoom or prime? Okay prime. 15 or 14? 15. But wait a minute, couldn't I do more with a zoom? Yeah! I think I need a zoom. But wait...!"
Makes me feel insane, but this may be lack of experience. (I hope!)

The err in my first post was I should've said "I haven't used a prime lens yet. I've only been using my kit zooms."
I suppose you have used your kit zoom for a bit. If you go through your pictures and pick the ones you like the most, what focal length are they taken at? That could point you in the right direction as for which primes to get first.

For the zoom vs prime battle; I find zooms more flexible for quick shots (holiday with family, or when you can't move freely), but prefer primes for their compact size.

Of course, some people just can't stand having to switch lenses "all the time", and will use only zooms. Others get more creative using primes by being forced to think differently.

For me, size matters. I don't use my 10-20 much since the 15 is so much smaller. The 15 and 35 are always in my bag, and I will add a 21 at some point.

On the other hand, I don't have any long primes. When shooting wildlife I want the flexibility of a zoom.

I have 50 and 100 primes as well, but don't use them much. I mostly prefer wider lenses.

In short, you have to find out what suits you. There are no rights and wrongs in photography as long as you enjoy what you're doing.
07-30-2013, 02:51 AM   #14
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I have a 28mm SMC-A, a 40mm DA Limited, a 50mm Lensbaby (and previously a 50mm SMC-A) and a K 55mm. I tend to shoot street and landscape, and I guess the 40mm has spent the least time in my bag recently (partly due to autofocus and being ludicrously small). But I find the 28mm a very useful length too. The 50 and 55 rarely see much camera time, except for portraits. Its worth mentioning that I also shoot on film, where the 28 is a fair bit wider and the 55 gets a lot more use (not too far off the field of view of a 35mm on APS-C). I find myself yearning for a wider option, maybe a 15 or thereabouts (close to a 24mm on full-frame). The only zoom I use often is the 17-28mm fisheye, which I use almost exclusively at 17mm (27mm equivalent on full-frame).

So my advice to the OP would be around a 28mm or 30mm for near-normal focal length, and around a 15mm for wide. The 50 is great for portraits and short-tele stuff.
07-30-2013, 04:15 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Joe Nation Quote
I have a 28mm SMC-A, a 40mm DA Limited, a 50mm Lensbaby (and previously a 50mm SMC-A) and a K 55mm. I tend to shoot street and landscape, and I guess the 40mm has spent the least time in my bag recently (partly due to autofocus and being ludicrously small). But I find the 28mm a very useful length too. The 50 and 55 rarely see much camera time, except for portraits. Its worth mentioning that I also shoot on film, where the 28 is a fair bit wider and the 55 gets a lot more use (not too far off the field of view of a 35mm on APS-C). I find myself yearning for a wider option, maybe a 15 or thereabouts (close to a 24mm on full-frame). The only zoom I use often is the 17-28mm fisheye, which I use almost exclusively at 17mm (27mm equivalent on full-frame).

So my advice to the OP would be around a 28mm or 30mm for near-normal focal length, and around a 15mm for wide. The 50 is great for portraits and short-tele stuff.
Mostly agreed. 35mm is not only a bit close to 50, I find it a little bit too long for general purposes. I find my DA21 or K28/3.5 (I also have the M) very good. For travel kit 21+28+50 (maybe also +DA70 or M100 or M150) works for me. (I might include the 70 and drop the 50.) While the DA15 is excellent, I find I don't use it as much as I expected - I find the 21 less gimmicky in practice. Over-use of really wide angles gets a bit irritating IMHO.

Tim
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