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Thread: need advice on lens for trip overseas

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    Member 135i's Avatar
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    need advice on lens for trip overseas

    New to this forum... must say great forum. Im new to DSLR world and need some advice
    Have bought a 550D 1 month ago and also 2 lenses-- 1. Canon EF 85mm f/1.8
    2. Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/ 3.5-5.6 IS

    Im travelling to Europe and New York/Hong Kong (land HK then europe then NYC before heading home to Oz)
    Wondering if i need to buy any other lenses for trip?
    Any if yes is it worth it buying in HK or NYC?

    Cheers Oscar

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    Member kwokask's Avatar
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    Maybe an ultra wide (1x-2x mm) lens would be useful to complete the range (18mm crop is equivalent to 29mm FF, which is not that wide).

    If you are planning to purchase in HK, avoid the camera shops in tourist areas as they are generally a rip-off (e.g. Tsim Sha Tsui).
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    The best advice I can give for buying overseas is know what you want to buy and what it is worth in Australia before you go. The dollar being so strong at the moment gives a great opportunity to buy overseas. There are some great camera shops in New York. B&H Photo are are site sponsor and have a shop you could waste a couple of hours and spend a few thousand dollars in! It seems there are shops selling camera gear on every second corner. Most all have the same prices and can prove difficult to get a discount. Do a Google search for the cities you are visiting, find your best prices, print out the details and then go haggling. When buying in the USA the quoted price probably does not include tax so make sure you clarify the total price you will pay before agreeing. Ask about what warranty you will receive as you need to be making a good saving in case you have to pay for postage both ways to where you purchased it if anything goes wrong. I hope this helps a bit.

    Andrew
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    why not just take 18-200 - its what its designed for
    Darren
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    G'day Oscar

    I agree with the above ... the 18-200 is a great GP lens and will cover very nearly all the subjects that you as a tourist will likely meet. Also, as said above, the dollar is up, so your buying price in HK will not be much different from buying here ... google "shopbot" and see what prices are available

    Regards, Phil
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    thanks for advice guys. What is a good landscape or panoramic lens (are they the same ?)
    Would the photos look better than using my 18-200mm?

    What sort of price would I be looking at?

    And what sort of external flash do I need for my trip for night pics?

    I am assuming either of my lenses---the 18-200mm (f/3.5-5.6) and the 85mm (f/1.8) are ok to use at night?
    cheers Oscar

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwokask View Post
    Maybe an ultra wide (1x-2x mm) lens would be useful to complete the range (18mm crop is equivalent to 29mm FF, which is not that wide).

    If you are planning to purchase in HK, avoid the camera shops in tourist areas as they are generally a rip-off (e.g. Tsim Sha Tsui).

    Where do you suggest one looks at in HK for lenses?
    And what lens exactly would you recommend for wide pictures/panorama--eg. city views, sea/harbour views etc
    cheers
    Oscar

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    Member tomtom1's Avatar
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    I agree that the 18-200 should be fine since you already have it. While it doesn't have the greatest reported IQ, it has a versatile range of zoom, and you won't need to constantly change lenses. 18mm is reasonably wide, and if you want wider, then you can take multiple shots and stitch them together in a pano.

    I'm not sure an external flash would top my list, but it may be good for indoor portraits. In this case I'd go for a 430ex.

    Consider taking a tripod along with you, if you can put up with hauling it around it will be good for group shots, landscapes and long exposures.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tomtom1 View Post
    I agree that the 18-200 should be fine since you already have it. While it doesn't have the greatest reported IQ, it has a versatile range of zoom, and you won't need to constantly change lenses. 18mm is reasonably wide, and if you want wider, then you can take multiple shots and stitch them together in a pano.

    I'm not sure an external flash would top my list, but it may be good for indoor portraits. In this case I'd go for a 430ex.

    Consider taking a tripod along with you, if you can put up with hauling it around it will be good for group shots, landscapes and long exposures.

    Thanks for advice
    How practical is it carrying a tripod on holiday. Especially if you have a wife and 2 1/2 year old in tow?
    If possible what size and how compact is feasable and weight?
    I have a canon 550D.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 135i View Post
    Thanks for advice
    How practical is it carrying a tripod on holiday. Especially if you have a wife and 2 1/2 year old in tow?
    If possible what size and how compact is feasable and weight?
    I have a canon 550D.
    It's really up to you, and the style of travel you are undertaking. How much luggage are you carrying? Backpacking? On a tour? Hiking or traveling in a bus? What sort of things are you planning on shooting, and where are your priorities? How much can you carry physically?

    I've heard of people taking a Manfrotto 055XPROB on a hike, which would be almost 3kg with head, and quite bulky...crazy in my opinion but if they can handle it...fine. Arguably the best travel tripod is a gitzo 1541T, but it's expensive. Another model is the benro travel angel but I don't have much experience with this. I'd hesitate to recommend getting a specific travel tripod, without knowing your needs for a tripod at home. You'll need a head as well.

    Perhaps a way to go would be getting a mini tripod or gorillapod, see how you like it, and go from there?

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    From personal experience traveling with such a large camera and accessories. How cumbersome is the camera and associated accessories is dependent on where you decide to travel on that day. If you decide to go shopping in HK for that day, don't bother taking the DSLR, just use the small digi cam. I'm sure you'll be pre-occupied with bargains and things to buy rather than seeing what nice shots you can take.

    When you go traveling to the mountains and sight seeing then by all means take the DSLR. Try not to mix sight seeing and shopping in one go, as the last thing you would want to do is try to take a nice shot of something while you're carrying 5 full bags.. like i tried to do... not worth it haha

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    G'day Oscar

    Your Qs regarding tripod, w/a lens & flash are "how long is a piece of string?"

    Tripods ... I have 2 tripods, one for 'big work', one for 'walkabout' work. The second is a manfrotto, called a Table-Top or Traveller's tripod ... about the size of a banana, the legs telescope into the body when not in use and a ball & socket head on top

    I take this little bloke with me into all sorts of places - hold it against brick walls, car bonnets, shop windows, rock walls whatever & the B&S head swings the camera into position. Have a look at one of these (or similar maker) as a possibility

    Extra Lenses ... My 100% mate is "just take the 18-200 and be done with it". You are travelling, so enjoy the travels, don't fart-arse around with swapping lenses just to try to get a bit wider, (or whatever)

    Extra Flash ... same as above

    Regards, Phil

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    I can advise you of the best places to shop for camera gear in HK

    but with the strong AUD atm, you will save even more by buying in New York at B&H, not to mention if you are not comfortable with haggling and facing language barriers, an english speaker in the US will make life a bit easier for you.

    BUT buying in NY means it would be much later in your trip......so then I must say Wing Shing Cameras in Mong Kok, is the first place I would go to

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    I traveled for a month around SE Asia last year and am planning a couple of trips for late this year / early next year. One through the middle east and another to Everest Base Camp. I lugged a very heavy Lowpro bag with a ton of gear in it though Vietnam and Cambodia. I got some good shots but would have liked much less weight. What I found useful was a Tamron 18-270 - good all round for travel, Canon 10-22 - excellent for temples and narrow spots - did a great job in Cambodia at the Angkor Wat complex and other nearby ruins. I also took the Canon 17-55IS 2.8 which was good in lower light. I didn't worry about a tripod although I do own a Gorillapod SLR and a Benro carbon fibre tripod. On my next trip I will take the Gorrillapod.

    I am also going to get the best point and shoot I can find also for the times I just can't be bothered carrying a slr. Buggered if I know how people travel with the 70-200 2.8IS.
    Have been thinking about the 135 prime though - it looks like a cracker of a lens.
    I may need to stick to the point and shoot for Everest Base Camp - I don't think I can carry a DSLR to 5500 meters and live to tell the tale.

    Anyway there is nothing more fun for me than travel and photography.
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    Thanks for great advice. I think I will just use what I have at moment and look around--browse in Hk
    BUT really consider buying-- wide lens, macro lens and flash in NYC-B+H

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    what benefit would I see using a Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8 L II USM for general landscape, buildings on holidays and portrait (but whole body shots) versus my current canon lenses ( Canon EF 85mm f/1.8
    2. Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/ 3.5-5.6 IS)?

    Also what lens would be great for very close facial shots for medical work---I am a cosmetic surgeon and looking to improve my pre and post op pictures. I currently use the 85mm f/1.8(Canon)
    Do I need macro (to show wrinkles, facial dynamics better)?

    cheers
    oscar

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    The 16-35L vs the 18-200 is like lining up a Ferrari next to a Datsun mate. They are galaxies apart in terms of .. well ... everything.

    I find that when I travel, I never use a lot of gear. I just got back from Thailand and I had the 28-75 on the camera the whole time, despite having a kit full of lenses and other junk back at the hotel. You dont wanna let your holiday pass you buy while youre mucking about changing lenses.

    For holiday shots, the 18-200 will serve you fine. They are designed for this kinda thing, and I guess the best way to describe them would be that they do everything ok but nothing great. Unless you wanna get super funky and go extra wide 18mm (29mm equiv.) should be ok for most things like general landscape/street stuff. If you do wanna get some pano/ultra wide stuff done, do a bit of reading on how to shoot, and then stitch, multi shot panos in post when you get home. Its not that hard to do if you follow a few basic rules.

    Tripods on holidays ?? mmmm ... I dunno, you can usually find something to prop your camera up if you need to go slow shutter. For me theyre just extra weight and rarely get used. Gorrilapods can be handy, I have one and usually take it way with me.
    Hi Im Darren

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    Member R1titan's Avatar
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    +1 on a superzoom for travel.
    You may also want to consider a fast prime for night street and an UWA if you like landscape.
    I dont bother with a tripod either for travel.
    I usually just take the camera and single lens combo out depending on what i intend to shoot, or if i have no idea i just pack the superzoom.
    It really depends on what u want to photograph...
    Canon User

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    Member kmcgreg's Avatar
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    135i I am dental surgeon with a dental implant based practice and take lots of photographs. I would recommend the same lens I use a Canon 100mm 2.8- good for portraits as well as up close macro shots. I do lots of pre and post photos - mainly for treatment planning and good records. I use it with a ring flash to eliminate shadows.

    Hope that helps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmcgreg View Post
    135i I am dental surgeon with a dental implant based practice and take lots of photographs. I would recommend the same lens I use a Canon 100mm 2.8- good for portraits as well as up close macro shots. I do lots of pre and post photos - mainly for treatment planning and good records. I use it with a ring flash to eliminate shadows.

    Hope that helps.
    thanks for the advice
    I have a 85mm f/1.8-canon--is this comparable to your 100mm f/2.8?

    Or do i need to buy a 135 lens or the L series 100mm- ? --for work pics

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