Going on a trip: help me build a kit!

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Techhie, Jun 16, 2010.

  1. Techhie macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2008
    The hub of stupidity
    Long story short: I'm leaving for a Chicago vacation in a month. For this I want ample Canon gear to shoot with, and I began building a ground-up kit as of this week. So far:

    -EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS
    -EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-5.6
    -EF 50mm f/1.8

    Because my budget (~$2,000 after the above purchases) does not allow for full frame...and because I want video capture... the best body I can find is the 7D (hence the EF-S glass). I must also factor a MacBook Pro into the math, which leaves me with about $1,000-$1,500 to work with.

    My question to you guys:

    Am I wrong to go with the 10-22mm over something like a 24-105mm f/4L to cover my wide end on a 1.6x sensor? The 70-200 is definitely too tight to keep on all of the time. Should I reconsider my choices and sell some glass?

    Also, with my budget, should I be looking at other bodies (550D)? The 5D mkI looks nice, but is getting dated and doesn't have video. Note that all of this will be purchased used, meaning at much less than retail. I got the 70-200mm for $1,300.

    Thanks! :D
  2. Pikemann Urge macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2007
    I'm not extremely well versed with Canon gear. However, your kit there looks fine. Think about replacing the 10-22 with a Tokina 12-24. The 50mm nicely covers the gap between 22/24mm and 70mm.

    It seems a shame to want to lug around a laptop with you. I thought the whole point of digital photography was to reduce equipment. :p
  3. spice weasel macrumors 65816

    Jul 25, 2003
    Your lens choices seem fine to cover a range of focal lengths. But one thing you may want to consider is that Chicago weather can be absolutely miserable in the summer. It gets very hot and humid in July and August. You're going to want to carry the least amount possible in the smallest bag you can. If it were me, I'd just bring two lenses (in my case, the 50mm prime and the 10-22mm wide angle, but that's based on the types of things I like to shoot). I'd definitely ditch the laptop. You're going to want to put a bottle of water, sunscreen, and a few other items in your bag as well, and that thing is going to get damn heavy with your kit in there too.

    Just my $0.02.
  4. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Mar 17, 2008
    I use the 70-200 very little when I go to chicago for a number of reasons.

    1. I like shooting wide in cities.
    2. It's heavy.
    3. It screams mug me.

    For me, a better kit would be 10-22, 50 and one of 24-105, 24-70 or 17-55. If you are planning on shooting in good light, I would probably use 24-105 so you have some length, but it is a personal decision.

    I would rather carry a tripod than the 70-200 as it will help me get better shots for similar weight.
  5. JackHobbs macrumors regular


    Nov 1, 2009
    Before you decide what gear to take, decide what sort of photos you are likely to take. We spent a couple of days in Chicago a few years ago (Denver airport had too much snow and planes couldn't land!) and the architecture was amazing. If you are planning on lots of building shots, then a 70 to 200 zoom may not get much use. Like I said, it depends on the shots you want to take.

    I would also factor in a good bag/rucksack to carry your gear in. I'm a big Lowepro fan but there are some great bags out there. Have a great trip.:cool:
  6. akdj macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    There's a LOT more to shoot in Chicago than just architecture.

    I like your kit. However, I would DEFINITELY look in to augmenting it to cover the 24-70 FL. I would actually cover 24-70 before I went UWA, however, ymmv. You've really not mentioned what you'd like to shoot...

    Regardless, if you do go with an APS-C body...and YES, by all means, if you're not shooting sports or out in the rain...consider than little t2i body. It's producing some incredible shots! I love my 7d, but I do shoot a lot of action. My wife shoots with the t2, and that's all we took to Vegas a few weeks ago...
    Along with the 70-200 and 24-105. I didn't need a WA, as I figured the only landcape/architecture shots I wanted this time (my in-laws live there) was the Grand Canyon....and for those, I wanted to practice stitching a Pano.

    24-70 or 24-105...your choice. I've got both and like each for different reasons. All around walk-about, my favorite is 24-105 if I'm outside. Inside; the 24-70 (because of the extra ƒ-stop). Again, ymmv. I like your glass choices...but if monies allow, maybe rent yourself a 24-105 (if you're mainly shooting outside) to take advantage of the IS, for situations you can't drag a mono/tripod.

    Have Fun! Chicago is AWESOME! Bring the 70-200 out in the street for incredible candid shots...Folks from every walk of life, street vendors, and food stands...The "L", Waterparks, Lake Michigan...you're going to have a BLAST!

  7. zipelius macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2007
    Yeah... Think what you are going photo that's good advice.

    My advice is buy good big bag and smaller bag and take all your stuff with you. Use big bag to carry camera gears to hotel. When you go walk to city or where ever then you choose what you like to photo and take those gears with your smaller bag. Next day change gear and shoot different things.

    I have used on my trips 10-22 and 70-200 and those great because I could use wide angle to buildings and tele to people. Sometimes I have been places where is so much dust that I dont have wanted change lens so I have use just one lens and that was 24-105/4L and I have been happy with that also.

    I like think tank bags. http://www.thinktankphoto.com/

    PS. Pikemann. Why good morning Finland? Why not Vietnam?
  8. advres Guest


    Oct 3, 2003
    You'll find the nifty-fifty is going to be the lens that sits on your camera 90% of the time.
  9. HBOC macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2008
    This is what I would get personally

    used 5D ($1100)
    70-200 f/4L IS
    16-35 MKI if you really want UWA.

    crop, I would get:
    70-200 f/4

    The 24-105L is a great lens, but I would rather get the 24-70 as it is optically a bit better (better contrast, bokeh, faster, and heavier). I would also get the 17-40L OVER the 17-55IS, but again, that is just me. I have read many stories about dust finding its' way into the front element of the 17-55.

    Also the 5D is a dust magnet. I have some dust in my pentaprism of the 40D, but no big deal.
  10. Pikemann Urge macrumors 6502

    Jan 3, 2007
    Because people in Finland might need to know what the weather is like where I am. Plus, I don't know anyone in 'Nam. ;-)
  11. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    I would recommend the EFS 17-55 f2.8 IS. It is the ultimate walk around lens on a crop body.

    Personally I would also opt for the 70-200 f4 IS vs the f2.8 variant to save on cost and weight. But I don't know your favored focal ranges and specific telephoto needs in lower light and it sounds like you already purchased it anyway.
  12. flosseR macrumors 6502a


    Jan 1, 2009
    the cold dark north
    And we do appreciate it, especially with the "awesome" weather we have up here.... though midsummer is usually great :) ok enough Off topic.

    I agree with the 70-200 f4L and the 17-40L for crop or fullframe body.the in between is kind of uncharted territory because walk around means something different for everyone. BUT, i would suggest you look at the whole F4 line up with a used 5D.. the Higher ISO compensate EASILY for the F4 and in nice daylight you won't notice the difference.
  13. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    I'm a wide angle shooter so this may be biased, but I would say:

    16-35 (or whatever wide angle equivelent you choose, 10-22 if not on a full frame)

    and the 50mm for low light shots/more reach.
  14. zipelius macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2007
    Think positive! Today it's not raining so much as it did rain yesterday :D Weather in Finland
  15. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    I would get the following few equipment if you go for the crop sensor camera:
    (1) Sigma 30 mm f/1.4. This will give you a lot of creative freedom. The focal length is much better suited for general purpose photography than the 50 mm. The 30 mm is my most-used lens.
    (2) Tamron 17-50 mm f/2.8 or Canon 17-55 mm f/2.8 (if you've got the budget). I recommend the former, then you can get an additional lens, a nice flash or something.
    (3) A flash gun. I suppose the 430 EX II is the current Canon mid-range model. (Please correct me if I'm wrong.)
    (4) Velcro and gel filters for the flash.
    (5) If you like portraits of people, I'd get an 85 mm f/1.8 or f/1.4 lens (I'm not sure if Sigma's f/1.4 is available already).

    For full frame, I'd get the following:
    (1) Canon 17-40 mm f/4.
    (2) 24-105 mm f/4.
    (3) 85 mm f/1.8.
    (4) Flash and gel filters.
  16. iSax1234 macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2010
    I'm going to repeat everyone else and ask. What are you shooting? I don't think you're going to want to carry the Canon 70-200 2.8L IS around. I think you'd be much better with the f/4 IS version. As well you 10-22 is great if you're looking 7d. 50 vs 35 is a big debate. Honestly 35 is probably better but its your preference. When ever you travel keep it light and minimal, and more than likely wide. I think the 10-22, 24-70, and then some zoom. covers all of your focal lengths. Or you can just go primes and get a 24mm f/2.8. And then a fifty f/1.4 and the 100mm macro f/2.8 IS

    I don't know why you'd need a flash. I mean you don't visit a city to take portraits, candid shots maybe but that doesn't call for a flash.
  17. Techhie thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2008
    The hub of stupidity
    I had the f/4 version a few months back for a shoot, and I need something wider (both for DoF and low-light)

    I'm actually visiting with friends, so there will be portrait work. I prefer going with fast glass over using my hotshoe, but that's just me :D

    I've actually reconsidered the 10-22mm, and sold it (for a $100 profit, no less).

    If my budget allows, I'll try to go with the 5D mk II, but I can't really say right now. It all depends on the deals that pop up.

    Would 24mm be wide enough for most uses on a FF body? I can't afford to take three lenses with me in either case, so a 24-xx and 70-200mm f/2.8L IS combo seems to cover most bases.

    I've thought about the 5D classic for a while, but I'm a bit leery because of its age and lack of video capture. It's a cheap route to full frame, but do you really get the low-light benefits on such old sensor tech?

    As for the 24-105mm vs. 24-70mm, that choice has been made for me (basically). I can't seem to find a 24-70mm anywhere for under $1,000, while the 24-105 usually appears on Craigslist for $700 or lower. The 24-70mm is probably better glass (and I'd like the f/2.8 as well), but it's an extra $300 I'd have to come up with. Also, I know I'm not going to be shooting action, so the IS would come in handy more often.

    I am going to be gone for a month, and I can't survive without a computer for that long. Not just because of the interwebz, but also because I don't want to buy 100 GB in CF cards :p

    It may scream "mug me", but I'm not planning on going to any bad neighborhoods :p

    I'm a pretty big guy, and the weight of the 70-200mm f/2.8 doesn't bother me much. The soft pouch for it is reasonably sized too, so it can fit in a smaller photog bag with another lens. I definitely want to take it, it has gotten me some of my best shots in the past.

    Now that the 10-22 is out of my hair, I have another lens choice to make. I guess it depends on which body I will be getting, as the EF-S glass won't work on FF cameras. If it's a crop body, the 17-55mm is a great choice, but around the same price as 24-xx lenses. It has advantages over both, but I don't want to drop that kind of coin until I'm sure I'm getting a compatible camera.

    I'm going to be taking pictures of anything and everything picture-worthy :cool:

    I'm not a specific type of photographer, that's why I'm trying to cover my bases. The only thing I know is that I will not be shooting sports or action. If I had to guess, I would say that it will be a primary mix of candids and architecture.
  18. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    I haven't read your initial post carefully enough, I thought you already own the three lenses you've mentioned.

    If you go for a crop camera, add the following items to the list:
    (6) Tokina 12-24 mm if you need an UW lens.
    (7) Tokina 50-135 mm f/2.8 or Sigma 50-150 mm f/2.8. This focal length is much more suitable for crop sensors. I own a 80-200 mm f/2.8 and I often find myself longing for something sorter. ~120 mm is often too long for indoor portraits.
    (8) Good bags. Note the plural. You need one big bag that holds all of your equipment and you really, really want a small bag that holds a flash, the body and 1-2 additional lenses.

    If you go for a full frame body:
    (5) Canon 70-200 mm f/4 or Tamron/Sigma 70-200 mm f/2.8. IMO there is no replacement for a large initial aperture, but optically, the Canon is a gem. It's also very light.
    (6) Good bags. Note the plural. You need one big bag that holds all of your equipment and you really, really want a small bag that holds a flash, the body and 1-2 additional lenses.

    Regarding full frame bodies, if you don't need video and you don't crucially need a fast AF system (think: landscape and people photography as opposed to sports and wildlife photography), then go for full frame, i. e. the 5D. Since you write you're not into action photography, I reckon the 5D is fast enough. Regarding IQ, I wouldn't worry about that either.

    I envy Canon shooters, because now they can pick up full frame bodies for not too much money on the used market.
  19. jbg232 macrumors 65816


    Oct 15, 2007
    May I add that if you don't have one already you NEED a tripod and ESPECIALLY a flash with that kind of gear. It really depends on what you are shooting though. If you want to do landscapes/cityscapes you should definitely get a tripod and wide angle (which is what cities are great for). However, you are most likely not going to get the price benefit of a 70-200 f/2.8 IS and you can get much of the benefit with a flash (which won't be too much to lug around if you are bringing all these lenses anyway.

    If that were my budget I would get either:

    Crop: 7D or 550D
    24-70 or 24-105 or 17-55
    55-250 (good enough for rare telephoto shots and this is coming from someone who has the 100-400)

    Full frame (which I highly recommend for your needs): 5D Mark II
    24-70 or 24-105 (you won't need the wide angle as much with this camera obviously
    optional if you really want wide angle: 16-35
    optional if you really want telephoto: 70-200 f/4 non IS

    With either of these I would recommend a flash and tripod before anything else. Have I made that point clear?

    EDIT: just read your second post...

    Definitely go for the 5D Mark II and if the money is an issue get the kit or 24-105 on craigslist. It is a winning and proven walk-around combination. Only problem with the 5DM2 is that there is no flash so you'll need one if shooting indoors (which I assume you will). Other thoughts for you if shooting architecture: consider a tilt-shift lens (which can do a phenomenal array of things) and I would suggest the 16-35 (or another wide angle) over a telephoto. Personally though, to make your life easy just get a 5D Mark II 24-105 kit and bag and enjoy the freedom to walk around! Just my thoughts.
  20. Techhie thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2008
    The hub of stupidity
    I thought that a combo of fast glass and high ISOs on a FF sensor would cut down on my need for a flash?
  21. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    No, there is no replacement for a real flash. The difference between a pop-up flash and a real external flash is huge. Especially now that you can also use your flash off-camera with the 7D without having to pay for extra equipment.

    If you spend that much on equipment, getting a flash is an absolute must. Don't worry, large-aperture lenses are still extremely useful -- especially primes. You can manipulate the ratio of foreground/background light at will.
  22. Eaton Photos macrumors regular

    Jun 23, 2010
    I have a couple of questions, & then also a couple of suggestions.

    First Off, what is your Total Budget for all your gear? Not counting what you have already purchased? Is that the $2K Figure?

    Where are you traveling from? What is the purpose of your trip to Chi-town? Personal, Business, Vacation, all of the following. Are you aware, if you need to, you can rent from Calumet, which has a store in Chicago: http://www.calumetphoto.com/ctl?ac.ui.pn=compinfo.CompStoreLocDetail&ac.comp.locID=CH

    For your MBP solutions, either buy from the boards here, or buy from the Apple Refurb Store: Here's a 13.3"/ 4GB RAM/ 250GB HDD, that is $1020.00. Small & Powerful. Plenty of storage for trips, that involve plenty of shooting.

    Camera Questions:

    Why do you want a DSLR that does Video? None of the DSLR's will AF, and using a DSLR, that shoots video, you will burn through storage at a very fast rate. BTW, the 5D may be "old technology", but all in all its a very good investment. I loved my 5D, while I had it. And while the 5DII sounds appealing, the 5D is an excellent purchase on a budget, if your looking for IQ & Simple Form-Factor. Also the Low Light capabilities of the sensor are down right awesome. The following statement is my opinion, but to me, FF handles High ISO, much better than crop bodies.

    Onto the Lens dilemma. If you decide to go the 5D route, then I would recommend the following Lens Line-up:

    Tamron 17-50/2.8 for Ultra Wide Perspective/ Low Light- Nightlife/ Walk-around
    24-105 for General Walk-around. On FF, 24mm is plenty wide enough for most shooting applications. 17mm might be a bit too wide.

    For your close-up's/ portraits/ telephoto, I will suggest a different lens, aside from the 70-200.

    My wild-card suggestion is the 100-400. Yes it does use older gen. IS, but it works, and is quite the versatile lens. For awhile, my primary combo that covered just about everything possible, was the 24-105 & 100-400. Great balance of features, weight, and IQ.

    For a bag, I will second Think Tank Bags & Systems. Based on what your looking to do, I believe the Speed Racer: http://www.thinktankphoto.com/products/speed-racer-belt-pack.aspx, would be great, as it lets you be mobile, and keep your gear close to you.

    If your looking to shoot night-life/ city-scapes/ time-exposures', then you'll need to heed the recommended advice & add a tripod to your kit. If I lived in Chicago, I would let you borrow some gear, so you could travel light, but I'm 5 hours south of Chi-town.
  23. gnd macrumors 6502a


    Jun 2, 2008
    At my cat's house
    Also note that 5DmkII doesn't have a built in flash (so you have nothing for a little fill flash). I would strongly recommend getting a flash.
    Even in bright summer light a fill flash does wonders for decreasing shadows on faces ...
  24. gnd macrumors 6502a


    Jun 2, 2008
    At my cat's house
    That Tamron will NOT work on the 5D. It's an APS-C lens and can damage the mirror on any FF Canon camera.
    It is a great lens for the 7D though. :)
  25. Techhie thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2008
    The hub of stupidity
    The 5D mk II doesn't have a popup flash, so it's all or nothing. I'm still not sure I will need one, as most of my shooting in the past has been lens-only. To tell you the truth, I would probably need to re-learn how to use one :rolleyes:

    It's looking like my budget for photography equipment will be about $2,600. Because I already have the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS, I figured this would be enough to score a used 5D mk II ($1,900) and 24-105mm f/4L IS ($700) to complete the kit.

    I do not want to rent any equipment, but that's a different argument :D

    Chicago will be a one week pit-stop between Las Vegas (my home) and Pittsburgh (where my family is.) I will be staying with a friend in Chicago, so the trip is strictly vacation/leisure time :)

    Experience tells me I can get one for much less on craigslist (~$700-800)

    Sometimes situations cannot be accurately captured by stills. I've had that happen before, and I thought it would be a nice tool to play with. From trying video mode on the 7D, it's not nearly as bad as people make it up to be. Sure, it may not be a substitute for an HD camera, but an HD camera isn't a substitute for a DSLR, either.

    From noise tests I've seen, the 5D comes close to the 7D in terms of noise performance, this is most likely a result of old sensor tech as well as old noise reduction algorithms. The 5D may have a larger sensor, but it is still a 5-year-old camera model.

    Call me biased, but I would rather not deal with Tamron glass. I like to stick to things I know, and experimenting with lenses is not something I want to do on my trip.

    I worked with the 100-400mm a while back...I'm not a fan of push/pull zooms. That, and while it may still be an L series lens, few would say that its IQ exceeds the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS. Besides, if I needed a focal length longer than 200mm, I would have gotten that instead. :cool:

    That's very generous to offer :D

    I have a tripod and capable bag already, so my main concern right now is the right body and glass combo. I'm going to also look into hotshoe flashes, but I'm not sure if my budget will allow for one. :(

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