I guess I'm just not a zoom guy.

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by PaulGiz, May 28, 2013.

  1. PaulGiz

    PaulGiz Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 3, 2013
    Rhode Island, USA
    This is probably because I came from 35mm Rangefinders, but I just couldn't get into zooms.

    Got the kit zoom with my camera because it was almost free, plus the 40-150 for the reach. They're sharp enough, and focus quickly enough, but then I bought a 14mm Panny, then a 30mm Sigma. Since then I just don't want to use the zooms at all.

    I'll keep 'em I guess, not worth too much for resale, but now I guess I know where I'm at and what I want. Maybe a 45 Oly or 60 Sigma and I'm done.

    I'm still getting great images, though.

  2. ahuyevshi

    ahuyevshi Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 9, 2010
    Berkeley, CA
    I'm with you... Although I would like to pick up a 45-150 for one or two use cases, but yeah I'm actually very happy in the 35 & 50 range
  3. mh2000

    mh2000 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 3, 2010
    My 17 and 30 are my two go-to lenses. Totally agree. I am happy with the 40-150 for "just in case" occasional long use... even though I have the 45. I gave my kit zoom to my gf when she first got into m43, but she almost never uses it... has the P14 and P20... shoots almost everything with the 20.
  4. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    recently sold my 45-200 and got the sigma 60 2.8, I always shooter better images with primes and I'll walk when I need to zoom. with 25 1.4 and 60 2.8 there's few things I can't do.
  5. uci2ci

    uci2ci Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    My 100-300mm lives on my camera. Im not a "zoom guy" either. Im a "telephoto guy" confronted with a lack of options and a budget
  6. Bravin Neff

    Bravin Neff Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 25, 2011
    Bravin Neff
    Me either. Wait til you get the O12 and PL25. Then you'll go from not being a zoom guy to REALLY not being a zoom guy.
  7. monk3y

    monk3y Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 14, 2013
    in The Cloud...
    Yeap... not sure about the other primes but the Oly 17mm f/1.8 and 75mm f/1.8 are just awesome. :D

    Very much converted me to a prime shooter except on the super tele range.
    Sent from my GT-N7100 using Mu-43 mobile app
  8. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    For me it depends on what I am doing. For my own personal use I love primes BUT if I am shooting an event{I work for a church} then I hate them. With a zoom you can go wide or go tight with just a twist. With a prime or even several on different bodies you have to do a lot more moving and you loose lots of good shots. When I go out for a photo-walk I will take a prime or two{maybe three with an extra body}. Then it is about the art of it and not just getting a bunch of shots. Heck I have gone on walks and came home with only a few pics, many of the same subject at different settings and angles and often only keep one or two. But those are better than anything I shot at an event.
  9. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    There are times when a prime is just what you want to work with.

    There are times when changing lenses constantly (for the many, constantly varying image making opportunities - or times when you can't/don't want to carry numerous lenses) really SUCKS... and quality zoom lenses make it all work just right, as needed, efficiently and comfortably.

    You CAN create stunning imagery with ANY lens, prime, zoom, legacy, native, or otherwise. It's all about what fits the widely varying needs of the particular situation at hand!

    If you are truly fortunate, you will be able to afford to have a nice selection of both quality primes AND quality zooms, to meet whatever your particular needs are at every likely opportunity.

    Primes are no more valuable than zooms. Zooms are no more valuable than primes. They each have their particular suitability and applicability.

    It's awesome to have both available!
  10. Dalton

    Dalton Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 24, 2010
    Portland, Oregon USA
    Dan Ferrall
    Hard to follow...

    I see these threads from time to time about preferences for zooms or primes. Rarely do I see much beyond vague references attempting to explain why a user leans one way or another.

    I have used both primes and zooms across a wide range of camera formats over a period of thirty eight years. To absolutely confine one's self to either zooms or primes baffles me. There can be value found in many high end zoom lenses and high end primes.

    I used the Oly 14-35 f2.0 and 35-100 f2.0 SHG glass until a year ago and believe that there is no prime in the 4/3 or M43 world that is their equal with perhaps the exception of the Oly 75 f 1.8. The new Panasonic 12-35 f2.8 and 35-100 f2.8 appear to excellent as well if not quite in the league of the SHG glass or the 75mm.

    Don't allow yourself to be swept up in the emotion of some kind of a vague ethereal ideal regarding confinement to fixed focal lengths or just zoom lenses. Keep your options open to creativity and practicality through the use of the best tool for the purpose.

    I do use primes most of the time now that I am only using M43 gear. There are zooms available that I will turn to when the time is right.
  11. twalker294

    twalker294 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 18, 2010
    I much prefer primes as well but it's definitely a "right tool for the job" kind of thing. My primary lenses are the 20/1.7 and the 45/1.8. I got the 14-42 with my EM5 and I very rarely use it. My other zoom is the 45-175. I bought it because my son plays football and my daughter is a cheerleader so I have a lot of sporting events to take picture of so I need a long lens. As good as the 45-175 is, it just doesn't have the "pop" that my primes do but it does do a very good job.
  12. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Sage advice. Be open to the best tool for the job at hand.
  13. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    I definitely side with Don and Dan here: each lens is a tool that can do a particular job.

    That said, a cogent anti-zoom case has been stated by Mike Johnston, editor of The Online Photographer. In short, Mr. Johnston feels that zooms make photographers lazy:

    I certainly wouldn't go as far as Mr. Johnston, but I do feel that a prime lens can do wonders for allowing someone just learning to shoot to focus on the aspects beyond zooming and to learn to "see" as the camera does. Perhaps we should reserve zooms only for those who've already proved that they can create great images with primes first? :wink:
  14. GRID

    GRID Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2011
    I use the 7,5mm 12mm 20mm 45mm 75mm (and 60mm for macro) alot, and the Canon 300mm is on the camera maybe 50% of the time, and all the others share the other 50%, so it would be really nice if Oly or Pana could make a smaller/ligher version, because it´s biiig and heavy :p i have the 14-140 and 100-300 also, but i dont use them alot, but it feels good to have for special events, just in case :)
  15. I enjoy using primes, they make me think more about composition than zooms do but there aren't many options for long primes and no native micro 4/3rds primes that I'm aware of that would do the job of my 75-300 II zoom.

    I agree with those who've suggested not limiting ones shooting to either prime or zoom but rather choosing what works at the time.
  16. uci2ci

    uci2ci Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2012
    Los Angeles, CA
    Zooms are double edge swords no doubt, but for someone who is starting photography, I think they are invaluable. It helps them find their niche while keeping them on a budget. It also gives a beginner the freedom to just snap and have fun with their gear. If you just gave me the usual 14(or 12), 25, 45mm m43 primes when I was just a beginner , I probably would have given up on photography after a short while. I didn't know how to properly change lenses in the field back then, I was always worried about dust, and I didn't know what focal length I'd need for what I was about to do.

    And while a zoom makes some aspects of photography easier for a beginner, it sure as hell teaches them a few valuable things too. They'd quickly start to appreciate the things that give photographers the most headache, I'm talking about managing shutter speed, foreground/background separation, managing noise, using tripod/monopods etc. If you gave a beginner a fast prime, they'd put that sucker on its widest aperture , easily blur every background from from the foreground, and shoot like that all day and all night. Give them a slow zoom, and they'll think twice before pressing the shutter button.
  17. elandel

    elandel Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 16, 2010
    Milan, Italy
    I'm a "zoom&telephoto" guy even if sometimes I use primes. Maybe because I'm lazy, maybe because it's my type of shooting, but for me it's ok like this.

    Also the zooms we have nowadays are getting more and more IQ so for me it's enough.

    When I shoot with primes they are mostly legacy lenses.
  18. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    I love primes, but there are a heck of a lot of situations where you need/want the ability to shoot at varying focal lengths, but definitely don't want to carry multiple lenses, nor be changing lenses. In these cases, with a high quality zoom, you can achieve spectacular results at varying focal lengths and not change a lens even once! That's really invaluable, when you need it.

    As for learning... a good student can learn well with both primes and zooms. And as for a lens making a photographer lazy? Don't blame the lens... it's the photographer who allows himself to be lazy. Selecting varying focal lengths often has nothing to do with being lazy and everything to do with AOV, FOV, and environment/conditions.
  19. darosk

    darosk Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 17, 2013
    Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
    I think it's really great how all the supertele zooms are so tiny and light compared to their APS-C/FF counterparts. If they could improve the C-AF, these tiny setups would be great for birding and things of that nature. Not saying it's not doable right now, but when you compare to the AF system of something like the 5DIII, m43 AF systems right now seem almost primitive.
  20. elandel

    elandel Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 16, 2010
    Milan, Italy
    Agree with you, it's never the tool just who uses it.