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Thread: Wide Angle Lens

  1. #1
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    Wide Angle Lens

    I am going to Canada in June, Rockies and Vancouver island.
    I was going to hire a AF-S DX NIKKOR 18300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens to take and
    was wondering whether it would be worth hiring a wide angle lens to take as well.
    I have never used one before so would like some advice on whether it would be worth it
    or a waste of money.

    Camera is a Nikon 5000, and I'm fairly new to all this.

    thanks in advance

    Paul

  2. #2

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    Wide Angle Lens

    I would call 18mm on a crop-factor camera still pretty wide. Keep in mind too though that if you need something wider on occasions you can easily shoot a number of overlapping shots and stitch them together.

    I shot this using 13 shots - hand held - with a 70-200mm lens ...

    Wide Angle Lens

  3. #3
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by phorsley View Post
    I am going to Canada in June, Rockies and Vancouver island.
    I was going to hire a AF-S DX NIKKOR 18–300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR lens to take and
    was wondering whether it would be worth hiring a wide angle lens to take as well.
    I have never used one before so would like some advice on whether it would be worth it
    or a waste of money.

    Camera is a Nikon 5000, and I'm fairly new to all this.

    thanks in advance

    Paul
    What lens do you already own? The 18-300mm is a very wide and useful range but if you are considering a two lens kit there maybe better quality combinations.

  4. #4
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    I think you should be adequately covered with that one lens. You will likely be shooting outdoor vistas; mountains, water and trees, and if you get lucky some interesting wildlife. I can see the usefulness of a longer lens (if you see some large wildlife), but I don't think you will need anything wider than your 18mm setting. My wife shoots pretty well exclusively with her 18-200mm lens and I know that is all she shot with on her last trips to BC and Alberta.

    But, if you insist that you want to take more than one lens; here are some throughts based on my last trip to BC:

    I just went through the images I shot and found that I had quite a few shots taken with my Tokina f/2.8 11-16mm lens; often at the 11mm focal length. This is an ultra-wide angle lens and is actually fairly difficult to work with because there is a tendency to get shots that have a lot of foreground and a lot of sky, and not much of interest to the viewer. When used well, you can get some stunning shots or architecture and outdoor settings.

    This shot is taken with that lens at 11mm focal length and is at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of S'gang Gwaay, and abandoned Haida village on Graham Island. It is located in Gwaii Haanas National Park, British Columbia. Just north of the north end of Vancouver Island.

    Wide Angle Lens



    You could see some interesting wildlife, and while you have a reasonably long lens, you might want something a bit longer for some of the larger wildlife that you won't be able to get too close to. I was shooting with a 80-400mm lens for wildlife shots. This bear is one we saw north of Prince Rupert, BC. The lens was at the 400mm setting. Long lenses (even the 300mm long end of the one you are looking at) are challanging to use. They are difficult to hold steady enough to frame a good shot; even with image stabilization. you have to shoot at a fairly high shutter speed.

    Wide Angle Lens

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post

    You could see some interesting wildlife, and while you have a reasonably long lens, you might want something a bit longer for some of the larger wildlife that you won't be able to get too close to. I was shooting with a 80-400mm lens for wildlife shots. This bear is one we saw north of Prince Rupert, BC. The lens was at the 400mm setting. Long lenses (even the 300mm long end of the one you are looking at) are challanging to use. They are difficult to hold steady enough to frame a good shot; even with image stabilization. you have to shoot at a fairly high shutter speed.

    Wide Angle Lens
    I'm sure the bear wouldn't have minded at all if you'd "zoomed a little with your feet"

    PS: Probably a good time to re-tell my favourite bear joke ...

    "The National Park Rangers are advising hikers in Glacier National Park and other Rocky Mountain parks to be alert for bears and take extra precautions to avoid an encounter.
    They advise park visitors to wear little bells on their clothes so they make noise when hiking. The bell noise allows bears to hear them coming from a distance and not be startled by a hiker accidentally sneaking up on them. This might cause a bear to charge.
    Visitors should also carry a pepper spray can just in case a bear is encountered. Spraying the pepper into the air will irritate the bear's sensitive nose and it will run away.
    It is also a good idea to keep an eye out for fresh bear scat so you have an idea if bears are in the area. People should be able to recognize the difference between black bear and grizzly bear scat.
    Black bear droppings are smaller and often contain berries, leaves, and possibly bits of fur. Grizzly bear droppings tend to contain small bells and smell of pepper."


  6. #6
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Colin - I would have had to have my dive gear on to "zoom" with my feet. I was sitting on a Zodiac near the banks of the estuary to get this shot and I would have had to swim out to get closer. Water tempertures never get higher than around 4 degrees Celsius, even in the middle of the summer. Getting onto land is against park rules.

    Actually we do use bear bells and have pepper spray with us on the trails in bear country. We haven't needed the spray so far, but things looked close more than once.

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    Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    Colin - I would have had to have my dive gear on to "zoom" with my feet.
    Must of been one of those rare occasions where a longer prime was needed

    Actually we do use bear bells and have pepper spray with us on the trails in bear country. We haven't needed the spray so far, but things looked close more than once.
    Rather you than me - you won't catch me even getting out of a car in any area they frequent.

  8. #8
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Rather you than me - you won't catch me even getting out of a car in any area they frequent.
    We do live in bear country; or at least at the borders of it. I remember quite a few years ago, my daughters school was locked down when a bear was seen wandering down our street. While Ottawa is a fairly large city, the other side of the Ottawa River; the Quebec side, is fairly rural and when the river freezes solid we get black bears crossing over in search of food every few years.

    Deer are quite common around town (they were in our suburban back yard about a month ago; and it is not uncommon so see them when I drive to work) and there have been problems with moose in the east end of Ottawa; town names like L'Orignal (moose in French) and Mouse Creek do come by those names honestly. I haven't seen a wolf in years but we do spot the occasional fox.

    The adventures of living in the "Great White North"...

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    We do live in bear country; or at least at the borders of it. I remember quite a few years ago, my daughters school was locked down when a bear was seen wandering down our street.
    Here's how you take care of them ...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVS1UfCfxlU

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    "PS: Probably a good time to re-tell my favourite bear joke ..."

    I'll add my bear joke that I heard recently ... bit of a "Dad" joke, but I found it amusing.

    "What do you call bears with no ears?"
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    answer: b

  11. #11
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by casper View Post
    "PS: Probably a good time to re-tell my favourite bear joke ..."

    I'll add my bear joke that I heard recently ... bit of a "Dad" joke, but I found it amusing.

    "What do you call bears with no ears?"
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    answer: b
    It took a second but I got it.

  12. #12
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    I think you should be adequately covered with that one lens. You will likely be shooting outdoor vistas; mountains, water and trees, and if you get lucky some interesting wildlife. I can see the usefulness of a longer lens (if you see some large wildlife), but I don't think you will need anything wider than your 18mm setting. My wife shoots pretty well exclusively with her 18-200mm lens and I know that is all she shot with on her last trips to BC and Alberta.
    OH NOOOOOOO for the first time im going to disagree with Manfreds sage views......

    I just went through the images I shot and found that I had quite a few shots taken with my Tokina f/2.8 11-16mm lens; often at the 11mm focal length. This is an ultra-wide angle lens and is actually fairly difficult to work with because there is a tendency to get shots that have a lot of foreground and a lot of sky, and not much of interest to the viewer. When used well, you can get some stunning shots or architecture and outdoor settings.
    FEW!! that was close! i dont have to disagree after all I love this lens and use it a lot in Landscape and it now comes with a focus motor so it will auto focus on your camera. Like Manfred says it takes a little practice to get used to using its perspective properly, but once youve tried it you will love it.

    I will be up your way April / May on a Photog tour so if you want to try my copy you would be welcome to do so.

    "What do you call bears with no ears?"
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    answer: b
    took more than a second for me, but got there in the end

  13. #13
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by casper View Post
    "PS: Probably a good time to re-tell my favourite bear joke ..."

    I'll add my bear joke that I heard recently ... bit of a "Dad" joke, but I found it amusing.

    "What do you call bears with no ears?"
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    answer: b
    When I first read it I thought you had written "beer with no ears". I guess you can figure out where my mind is at...

  14. #14
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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Hi Paul,

    there's some time left until June, so, if you haven't done so already, take those lenses out on a few trips, get used to them well, and maybe find out whether they are or aren't what you expect.

    That's what I think, anyway.

    Cheers,
    Frank

  15. #15

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    You are probably using the 18-300 to cover all contingencies and avoid much in the way of lens changing. Getting an ultrawide would sort of contradict that approach. The reason I got my ultrawide was not so much to go wider than my midrange but to add some additional image quality to the wider focal lengths. Any zoom, but particularly those in the superzoom category, are notoriously weaker at the extremes. I have the feeling that if you got an ultrawide with a pretty good range (sorry 11-16 fans) like a 10- or 12-24, you might find that you use it a lot more often than you think. Just imagine a huge lake full of lovely reflections and a mountain or two just beyond. Maybe some flowers in the foreground. It might be nice to have wider than 18 available then and there just in case. But, if you decide to add an ultrawide to your kit, buy or try it in advance. I found a good, intensive break-in period really helped me get adjusted.

    If you do buy an ultrawide, you don't have to feel bad about bringing the 18-300. There are probably going to be many times you can leave the ultrawide behind as you enjoy that incredible range. I used the combination of a 12-24 and a 28-300 at various spots during my vacation in Hawaii. Minimizes lens changing while maximizing opportunities.

  16. #16

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Larry that said, if I have the scene your describe I would still shoot it as a pan (in Portrait) not a 1 off in Landscape. If it is a Nikon than the lens you suggest 10-or 12-24 are 15-36 or 18-36 as they are DX lens, I use a 10-20mm DX on my D7000 and a 16-35mm FX on my D600. I alway shoot as a pan so that I can get as much of the scene as possible.

    Cheers:

    Allan

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    I got a 18-250 travel lens to cover most focal lengths on the basis of rather have a cheaper option than no option.
    I thought I could get away with the 18mm end by creating panoramas (stitching along the x axis, along the y axis and sometimes along both). It kinda worked and I thought it was okay. Then I got a 10-24 (on a 1.5x crop sensor). Before the day was out, it was my favourite lens, loved the look it gave, far superior to the other method. Much easier and gave my landscapes a new look that I personally far preferred.
    Graham

  18. #18

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    It is always good to offer the op alternatives. My question to you, since I have not shot panoramas yet and have no expertise, would the 18-300 be appropriate for shooting panos? The lenses you own are of high quality. You can probably minimize any interfering distortion with preferred focal lengths. Would the op be able to do so with a lens known for considerable distortion? Plus, and only phorsely can answer this, would he be up for the challenge? On the other hand, panoramas are definitely something I should try so thanks for the reminder.

  19. #19

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    Re: Wide Angle Lens

    Larry most of the panoramas I shot were with a 16-85mm DX Nikkor lens or a Sigma 10-20mm DX lens. If you have Photshop 5 or 6, or Elements 9 and up all you need to do it load them into Photomerge and let the program do what is does best. All you have to do is get about 15 to 20% overlap, that's it.I like portrait as I can get more forground and sky as often their can be some great action in the sky, so why cut it out.

    Cheers:

    Allan

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