What one zoom for travel with the XT1?

Discussion in 'Fuji X-Mount Cameras' started by theyog, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. theyog

    theyog FujiXspot Rookie

    12
    Oct 11, 2014
    Hi folks,

    I am off for a year in 2015 to do some travelling around Europe (Western and Eastern) for a youth working holiday and instead of sorting out visas and employment, I'm more concerned about what to bring camera wise.

    My X100S is definitely coming with me. I am also bringing my XT1, 35 1.4 and 56 1.2. I feel like I am lacking a wide angle zoom (for versatility). However it looks like the 10-24 is my only option at this point since I do not see the point in the kit lens when I already have my most common focal lengths covered by primes and the 18mm might not be wide enough.

    This lens will mainly be used for architecture, wide angle portraits with lots of DoF, street, cityscapes, landscapes (in the order)

    Curious to see if anyone else feels the same way.

    I'm also considering the 14mm prime but have the following concerns
    1. Very little experience with the 21mm FL on an UWA prime
    2. The 16mm 1.4 is coming out next yearish, and the slightly tighter FoV and much faster aperture is very tempting.
    3. Might not be as versatile as the 10-24 having 21, 24, 28, and 35 all in one lens.
    4. The price difference is negligible (less than 75 USD) in my country for the 14 2.8 and 10 - 24. So for about 75 USD more, I can get the zoom


    This will be my first ever zoom since my 18-135 on my Nikon D700 a few years ago, started using primes and never looked back, however now that I will be travelling, the versatility just seems like such a boon. I have my X100S, 35, and 56 for when I need to get my fix ;)
     
  2. Luke

    Luke FujiXspot Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    855
    Jan 31, 2013
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I think the versatility of the 10-24 (withing the limitations of all being kinda wide to SUPER wide) would be the best match with your current line-up. If you don't like the ultra-wide part, you might also consider the 18-135 since it adds to your wide angle needs AND telephoto needs (and if you get the 18-135, you'd have a weatherproof kit)
     
  3. Biro

    Biro Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    526
    Feb 1, 2013
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    If it's just a single zoom lens, I would think it would be the 18-135.
     
  4. theyog

    theyog FujiXspot Rookie

    12
    Oct 11, 2014
    Thanks for the replies, guys. I wouldn't really like the 18-135 as I had the Nikon version of this for my D7000 and almost 9/10 shots were taken between 18-40, I never really wanted more reach with that but could always do with more width.
     
  5. Luke

    Luke FujiXspot Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    855
    Jan 31, 2013
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    well then I'd go with the 10-24 zoom. For me, I need flexibility when shooting wide because it is not my strong suit. I have no interest in a 14mm lens. My 18 seems too wide sometimes and not wide enough for others.
    If you want more choices and most of your subjects are static, you can consider any vintage glass and an adapter, but old wide angles aren't the best.
     
  6. flysurfer

    flysurfer X-Pert

    Feb 1, 2013
    Nuremberg
    Rico Pfirstinger
    18-135mm for me.
    However, I'm also perfectly fine taking only my X100T, Fuji's best camera to date.
     
  7. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2013
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Under normal circumstances I would answer the "one zoom for travel" question with the same as Rico - the 18-135 is simply the logical solution. I am not really a wide person, but if it is your thing then Luke is right, go for the 10-24, and team it with the 35 for reach and speed when necessary.
     
  8. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    It's a shame that 18 isn't quite wide enough for you, because that kit 18-55 is VERY good, and can had for reasonable prices used. I did a big trip recently (5 weeks, 7 cities) with just a borrowed kit 18-55 and the 35 f1.4. I only wished for something longer or wider a few scarce times, and the payoff for me was well worth it... That's a very, very small amount of kit to carry around, and the minimal lens changes meant I didn't get my sensor too dirty.

    With the 10-24, is f4 going to be a limitation for you? When things get dark, or you want ANY kind of bokeh, you're only going have "mid" and "long" to choose from.
     
  9. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    Looking at the Lens Roadmap as I so often do, I think the best answer might be the upcoming 16-55 f2.8 lens, if you can wait for it. I often find the 14 to be a little TOO wide, with distortion at the corners a constant battle to fight (or quirk to use to my advantage). And 2.8 constant, in a weather sealed lens... that's what's holding me from getting the 18-55 right now.
     
  10. theyog

    theyog FujiXspot Rookie

    12
    Oct 11, 2014
    Hmmm.. Lots of interesting responses here.

    You know, maybe I will give the 18-55 kit a second look. I've heard it's not bad for a kit lens (compared to the CaNikon 18-55s or even the m4/3 kit offerings) and the OIS would sure be handy. I bought my XT1 body only fairly recently but since I've been buying from the same shop/guy for years now, he's offered to sell me the kit zoom only at body+kit price.

    Only hesitant about the 18-135 since i very, very rarely find myself shooting at 60mm+, I don't want to pay for a large lens like this and only find using half the capability.

    I'd love an X100T (if only for the wifi) but my X100S is still going strong! :)
     
  11. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    The 18-135 is big, and expensive, and has gotten some "for this $, the optics should be a little better" reviews. And it's slower than the 18-55 across the entire range, as well. So if you rarely go past 55, then you can spend less than half the $, and come out with faster, sharper glass that's a good bit smaller and lighter. That literally checks every box, UNLESS you need weather resistance.
     
  12. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2013
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Don't ignore the OIS... I did, and was pleasantly surprised. Bigger and slower than the 18-55 - true, but it wasn't until I had both that I realised they are not really an either-or choice. the 18-55 is a light, compact travel lens ideal for use with the X-E1 and 2, and the X-Pro, while the 18-135 is a heavier, less compact lens ideal for use with the X-T1.

    Horses for courses...
     
  13. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    I guess if all your shots are outside in at least decent light, 3.5 to 5.6 is ok. I struggle with it when I imagine being limited to that for a whole trip (understanding that a fast prime would be in my bag, but still, the whole point for me of a zoom is that I almost never HAVE to take it off.)
     
  14. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2013
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    That's my point... The OIS gives you 4-5 stops - a bit of a game-changer. I have never been a fan of slow, variable-aperture zooms - never really been a fan of zooms in general, in fact - but the 18-135 is blimmin' impressive.

    The other thing is that I work the other way 'round. I am prime-preferred by habit. I therefore stick the prime on and have the zoom in reserve in the bag for when I need the width or the reach; in other words, when zooming with my feet doesn't quite cut it.
     
  15. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    The more I'm reading about the 18-135, the more I'm coming around to it. I really, really only want to buy 1 zoom.
     
  16. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2013
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    I can understand that. I had the 18-55 to start, then acquired the 18-135 at a cracking price on the X-T1 launch deal. Not sure I would have bought the 18-55 if I'd already had the 18-135.

    The 16-55 2.8 is of interest, if it is not too bulky, as a replacement for the 18-55 and possibly the 14...

    Decisions, decisions :rolleyes:
     
  17. theyog

    theyog FujiXspot Rookie

    12
    Oct 11, 2014
    My local camera shop has a loaner 10-24 I can use for the weekend so I am going to see how it fares. If I end up using it around 14-16mm then I will have a look at the 14mm 2.8, if I end up using it closer to 24 then I'll take a closer look at the kit 18-55. If I just use it with no discernible pattern, then I'll buy it :)
     
  18. Luke

    Luke FujiXspot Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    855
    Jan 31, 2013
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    When I was a Pentaxian, I loved my old 18-135 zoom. I never felt the IQ suffered. But the Pentax weather resistant 18-135 can be found regularly for under $400. I'm going to wait and see and hopefully Fuji will will offer some nice $200 rebates around Christmas time. I think an 18-135mm with the 35mm would be about all I'd NEED. I may want more from time to time, but that pair could do just about anything I ask of it. Though I'm looking forward to the 150-400, I'm not sure I'll be able to justify the price tag.
     
  19. KillRamsey

    KillRamsey Super Moderator

    Feb 15, 2013
    Hood River, OR
    Kyle
    Regarding 18-135 + the 35, I agree, that's probably the ideal "do it all" small kit for me. It would all fit easily in the small Domke, lens changes would be minimal, and there's not a lot I couldn't pull off, ie "no regrets." Next most useful lens for me after those two would be something wide and FAST, so either the 23 (that I don't own) or the 16 (that nobody owns yet.) That leaves...

    - the 56 as a specialty lens, used for club shots of bands, for portraits, for strolls in big places with long sight lines, and for goofy stuff like this morning biking to work.
    - the 27, used when space is at a premium.
     
  20. Lightmancer

    Lightmancer Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2013
    Sunny Frimley
    Bill Palmer
    Kyle, we occupy a very similar head-space, I think. Your reasoning is very similar to my own. My minimalist day out kit is the X-Pro with 35 or 23 and 18-55. The "extended remix" of that throws in the 14 (ultra-wide) or the 18 (wide and fast) with the 35 and the 56 OR sticks to a twin lens setup with the 18-135 swopped for the 18-55. If I'm in a purist and low-light mode, then it's the 23, 35 and 56. Sports, wildlife and aero call for the 55-200 and the Samyang 300. If going long and heavy like that, the X-Pro is left at home and the X-T is called to duty, with the vertical grip to balance the weight of the longer and heavier lenses. Foul weather? The only current choice is the 18-135.

    The "I'm not carrying an X today dear" camera is the X-M1 with the 27 ;)

    We live in good times.