ANOTHER tiresome what travel lens kit should I bring??

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by OhWellOK, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. OhWellOK

    OhWellOK Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 4, 2012
    Brooklyn, NY
    Help! Thinking out loud here. Bringing my OM-D for an upcoming trip to Denmark and Norway. Definitely in my bag are:
    • Oly 9-18 - No brainer. Always comes with me when I travel to a new or scenic place.
    • Either PL25 or P20 I love both. More or less interchangeable for me. Leaning towards the 25mm.
    Now here's where it gets tricky :smile: :confused:

    • Pan 14mm - a nice to have, not needed, but it's so darn small! so why not? Can take 46mm polarizer and NDs as does my PL25. The 9-18 likely will do the lions share of WA.
    • Pan 14-45mm - do I really need a kit lens? I'll have my bag with me pretty much at all times. This lens does have great IQ takes the same 52mm filters as my Oly 9-18. Will also save me some lens changes in varying conditions and situations.
    • Olympus 40-150 - wasn't originally gonna bring this, but just had a blast shooting with it on a recent trip to the country. Especially for nature and outdoors. I'm not bringing a full-size tripod though, only an Ultrapod II which limits the full capabilities of this lens at the long end somewhat.
    • Olympus 45 - love the exceptional IQ from this lens, I thought it would be fun for street shooting in cities and portraits of my GF and family. I would be able to do 45 (albeit slowly) with either of the kits, but I'm not gonna get the lovely background isolation or nowhere near the IQ at that focal length.

    Another point is that I wouldn't necessarily have to carry ALL of these with me at one time, we'll be staying with my GFs family part of the time and not in a hotel. Thinking about the P14 or Oly40-150 neither of these were very expensive so I'm not too worried about theft or anything. I'd be nervous about leaving my 9-18 or PL25 behind, though.

    Whatdya think??
  2. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    my vote: 9-18, 25, 40-150 +/- 14-45mm

    I'd bring the 40-150, it's pretty lightweight and I've been using more than I expected in my own travels.

    I'd bring the pana 25 for low light. pana 20 will probably suffice if your looking for a smaller package.

    I'd consider bringing the 14-45mm, if you want an all purpose zoom during day time. Less need to change lenses, but the focal lengths are somewhat redundant if your bringing 9-18, 25, 40-150.

    I wouldn't bother with the 45mm. I feel you can take out-of-focus portrait photos anywhere at home. When travelling, I'd rather include something of the environment and scenery. If your not bringing the 40-150, then I would consider it.
  3. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    They would all go, if it were me. (I have all the same lenses except substitute cheap 14-42 and no 25mm.)

    Check your insurance if you have it, to make sure you have you have theft coverage and necessary docs. Then you won't have to be so nervous leaving a lens behind in the room.
  4. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    Heh, I am facing a similar dilemma. I don't have 9-18mm so, I definitely am taking the 14-42 kit zoom because it's very handy when just strolling around.
    I am also taking a telephoto, 45-175mm in my case. Probably won't use it very often, but it's very nice to have when needed .
    14mm is great for night scenery. Do not underestimate it. It is also a good lens to put on if you just want something really small on camera that you wear on neck strap with no bag to burden you. I consider it more sturdy than the 20mm because it does not retract so I feel more comfortable having it bouncing on side of body like that.
    I don't plan to be doing any portraits but for you I would definitely take the 45mm.
    For me the toughest decision is - 20mm or 25mm. I really appreciate the small size of the 20mm in these situations and also the wider angle is good for travel type shots especially inside buildings. But then , how can one justify having the 25mm and not using it? It is also faster focusing and faster aperture. tough choice. Let us know what you decide.
    I am also considering possibly getting a Fuji X100 (dont ask why :smile: ) for walkaround prime or 12-35mm instead of the 14-42 zoom. For wide angle right now I use Rokinon fisheye.
    Good luck!
  5. sammykhalifa

    sammykhalifa Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 22, 2012
    Pittsburgh PA
    Real Name:
    I went on a trip last year with just the 14 and 45-200 and felt ok about it. I didn't have the 20 back then, but those three together would have satisfied just about everything. Would have loved one of the wide zooms though--maybe you don't need that one if you're thinking of cutting out? The 20 is pretty small itself.
  6. OhWellOK

    OhWellOK Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 4, 2012
    Brooklyn, NY
    Thanks - great responses so far. A quick browse of the Native Lens galleries for the Pan 14-45, Oly 40-150 and Oly 45mm isn't helping me not want to just bring all 3! :redface::confused: If I went with the Pan 20 instead of the 25 that would help keep things light.
  7. monk3y

    monk3y Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 14, 2013
    in The Cloud...
    Real Name:
    Yeap agree... bring them all.

    All of them are light lenses, so no problem carrying them there.

    Sent from my GT-N7100 using Mu-43 mobile app
  8. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Real Name:
    Doug Green
    Here's my current travel kit: ONE body, either my Oly E-PL2 or Panny G5:

    Oly 14-42 II kit lens

    Panasonic 45-150 lens

    Adapted screw mt 55mm f1.8 SMC Takumar

    I will eventually get a fast wide to wide/normal prime, but I am currently wrestling with which one

    I will eventually get something ultra-wide, but I am also wrestling between the Panny 7-14 and Oly 9-18. But what I REALLY would want, but it doesn't yet exist, is a 9mm or 10mm f2.8 rectilinear prime.
  9. Luckypenguin

    Luckypenguin .

    Oct 9, 2010
    Brisbane, Australia
    Real Name:
    Taking the whole collection sounds like a nice, lightweight travel setup to me.
  10. cmpatti

    cmpatti Mu-43 Veteran

    May 8, 2011
    Berkeley, CA
    Depends on how you like to travel and what you tend to shoot. If, like me, you are an ultralight, minimalist type and you like shooting long lenses, take the 9-18, either the 20 or 25 and the 40-150. If you're an ultralight, minimalist type and don't often shoot long lenses, take the 9-18 and one of the mid-range primes or the 14-45. If you travel "expedition style" take everything or everything but the 14 (which really doesn't give you anything you don't have with one of the other lenses).
  11. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Real Name:
    Doug Green
    We seem to have pretty similar ideas about a kit:

    My kit within 4/3 looked like this: 11-22, 40-150. a 28mm f2.8 legacy Elmarit-R, and a legacy 55mm f1.8 SMC Takumar. I also used, but they never made the travel kit due to bulk and weight, a 180mm f2.8 Nikkor AI, and a 300mm f2.8 ED Nikkor AI with a busted auto-diaphragm that I picked up for $200. That was my birding lens, with or without a good 2X converter.

    As I've entered Micro 4/3, I am trying to come as close to replicating my 4/3 kit as I can, but the lack of a fast 11-22 makes that impossible (using this 4/3 lens on Micro 4/3 is not great, as it is quite big relative to the bodies, and it focuses quite slowly and hunts on the adapter.

    So, the 45-150 Panny lens, and the same 55mm f1.8 prime are no brainers, but I am also using the 14-42 Oly kit lens, and still trying to figure out what I want to do at the very wide range and the mid-wide fast prime (it seems clear that the 17mm f1.8, 20mm f1.7 and 25mm f1.4 are all viable candidates). But the very wide range remains a question - what I would REALLY want is a fast rectilinear 9 or 10mm f2.8 prime. But I might bite the bullet and go for the 7-14mm.
  12. uci2ci

    uci2ci Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    Real Name:
    Bring everything as already suggested. Just stuff the lenses between the garments in your carry-on. It wont take up any space really. Ask for a safe if the hotel has one. You GF's purse can serve as a lens caddy as well if your nice about it.
  13. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    Real Name:
    I'd go with the 9-18, the 20 or 25 and the 40-150 at a minimum. I traveled with a similar kit using Nikon before (Sigma 10-20, 35mm 1.8, 55-200) and was satisfied with that as a kit.

    On the other hand, the m43 lenses are so small and light, there is nittle downside to packing more. If you pack everything you have, you still have a much smaller and lighter kit than I traveled with a couple years ago.
  14. elandel

    elandel Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 16, 2010
    Milan, Italy
    My travel kit is: one body - 14-150; 9-18; one or two primes.For it suites ok.
  15. elandel

    elandel Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 16, 2010
    Milan, Italy
    Forgot to mention: flash and filters -nd and pola.
  16. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Real Name:
    As for me, I usually travel with 2 camera bodies and 2 lenses — 14mm and 45mm. Together they cover about 99% of my needs. And if I need more coverage or more reach, I just make several steps back or forward...
  17. Droogie

    Droogie Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 23, 2013
    Washington State
    My travel kit ( I like to keep things small) is my EPL2, a Sigma 19mm (can't afford the Pany 25 yet) and my trusty Minolta 50mm Rokkor X 1.4. Perfect for me to carry in a Domke 5XB. Fits in my carry on or behind my truck seat, plus I'm not fumbling in the bag sorting through a multitude of lenses and gear.
  18. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 1, 2010
    Yes. Mine is: two bodies, 9-18, 14-140, 12 F2. For wildlife and birds add a 100-300.

    My rig easily has 50,000 miles on it; Galapagos, Turkey, Southern Africa, Middle East, the majority of the parks in the western US like Yosemite, Death Valley, Glacier, ... and more.

    Here is what I have learned:

    You often don't control your vantage point. Solution: wide range zooms.

    You often don't control your movement, hence you are presented with shots where you don't have time to change lenses. Solution: wide range zooms.

    It can be dirty, dusty, wet, or otherwise undesirable to change lenses even in the rare cases where you have time to do it. Solution: wide range zooms

    Interiors of museums, churches, government buildings, caves, etc. can be dark. Solution: One wide, fast prime. Solution: Compact monopod with a cheap ball head and QR base.

    Cameras can break, get lost, get stolen, and trips are usually once-in-a-lifetime visits. Solution: two, preferably identical, bodies

    Memory cards can break, get lost, get stolen, etc. Solution: Many small (2-4GB) cards with the take spread among them by rotating them through the cameras according to a regular scheme. Alternative: A backup device of some sort.

    Batteries and chargers can fail, get lost, get stolen, etc. Solution: One charger and two or three batteries for each body.
  19. zettapixel

    zettapixel Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 12, 2010
    Might be useful if you don't have, for instance, polarizers for the primes. I don't think it will save much on lens changes though, since you seem to prefer primes....

    With stabilization and high ISO of OMD there is no reason not to bring it. It's a personal preference of course, but telephoto shots are often my favorite on the trips.

    Yep. On the trip background tends to be less blurry, but how can you leave 45 at home? For the same reason btw, I would be leaning towards 25/1.4 (vs 20/1.7)

    What I would yo - pack 9-18, 25, 45, 40-150, all the accessories and batteries. If there is space left, maybe 14-45 or 14, depends how much you like 14/2.5 I guess...
  20. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Definitely bring the 45mm as a companion to the 25 or 20mm and 9-18mm.