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Opinions wanted: Travel Lenses

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by whammy, Oct 22, 2012.

  1. whammy

    whammy New to Mu-43

    Oct 22, 2012
    I've been a long-time four-thirds user (E-500), and am now looking to upgrade to the OM-D EM-5. I plan on doing some traveling over the next year and want to make sure I have the appropriate lenses for a long trip.

    I like the idea of the 12-50 kit lens on the OM-D as a decent all-around lens with weather sealing, and I have been debating over what other lenses I should add to this for a good travel kit. I want to have at least one fast prime to be used for street photography. I also enjoy landscape photography, and would like to take a lens along that could be used for that.

    Looking forward to hearing people's opinions on this.
  2. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    For travel, size and weight is probably important. With that in mind, i think you might want wide angle, low light, and a telephoto. How about the 9-18, 20, and 40-150mm? Could get them all for maybe just under 1k.

    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43 App
  3. Hyubie

    Hyubie Unique like everyone else

    Oct 15, 2010
    That is a very good kit to start with, although I have no experience with the 40-150. With what I have, I'd probably bring the 9-18 and 20 - one for walk around and the 20 for low light. Probably the 45, too - probably won't use it much, but it's really small that it isn't much of a bother.
  4. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    Where will you be going and how will you be traveling?
  5. melonbread

    melonbread Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 27, 2012
    Melbourne, Australia.
    I asked a similar question here previously and because I was travelling in winter the really helpful people here gave me a few combos and recommended a few lenses, mainly the 12mm, 14mm, 9-18mm as I was going down narrow european streets, and generally it would be dark. Over the few months I've invested in a variety of lenses and seen what suits my shooting style, and it turns out, that even though its a bother switching lenses, I love me the three lens prime kit (12-25-45).

    These lenses keep value well, so I would suggest looking for some good second hand deals here or buying some new, and shooting a lot with them to see if you like them, use their lengths at all ^_^
  6. whammy

    whammy New to Mu-43

    Oct 22, 2012
    Traveling all around Asia (SE Asia, India, Nepal, China, Mongolia) by all means (Planes, Trains, Automobiles, Horse).
  7. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus loser Subscribing Member

    Nov 16, 2010
    7.5mm, 20mm + your 12-50 for those rainy days.
  8. Hyubie

    Hyubie Unique like everyone else

    Oct 15, 2010
    I should be so lucky ... :rolleyes: 

    Enjoy the trip, and don't forget to share the memories here!
  9. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    Sounds like a great trip! Since my exposure to Asia is limited to HK, Japan, etc., I will defer from making any recommendations. It does sound like you need to take a wide range of lenses though! The best sort of trip.
  10. Chrisnmn

    Chrisnmn Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 26, 2012
    Auckland, New Zealand
    I would suggest

    main kit.
    P12-35 as an all arounder.
    P20 or P25 as the main prime and low light performer

    S7.5 for W-I-D-E shots and landscapes as well as some special effects.
    O45 portraits or short tele photo if you need that.
    P100-300 if you are going to do some wildlife.

    my two cents.
  11. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    I travel with:
    8/3.5 FE

    I might stop carrying the 45/2.8 as I only use it for flower shots, and the 12-35 seems to focus close enough to cover that.

    The 45-200 will probably be replaced by the 35-100, especially if a 2x teleconverter becomes available.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. danska

    danska Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2012
    Portland, OR
    Pretty similar for me minus the telephoto.

    PL25 for night
    Oly 45 or 60 for short telephoto.

    35-100 would be ideal as a second general purpose. I've found that I don't use a real telephoto lens in the places I travel.
  13. I took a short holiday holiday recently where I had both my m4/3 camera bodies and a selection of lenses. The lens that I used most was still the 25/1.4 just as it is at home, but zoom lenses really come into their own for travel. Depending on how fast you are moving around and if you are travelling with others, you don't want to be the annoying person holding everyone up whilst fumbling with lens changes. When there is some pressure to keep moving I found having the 9-18mm and the 14-140mm to be ideal. Also on this trip I made use of the weather-sealed capabilities of the E-M5 and the 12-50mm lens, but in normal conditions I would choose the 14-140mm. It may sound excessive but I find carrying and using two camera bodies to be invaluable.
  14. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    I'd go with the following.

    1. 12-35. Weather sealed, good wide end of 12mm, awesome IQ and at a constant f2.8 will be a real trooper in most lighting conditions.

    2. 40-150. Cheap, small and packs a decent IQ punch.

    3. Pana 20/1.7. For those days when you need to small and compact and for when you need a good low light option. Oh...and because its a classic ;) 
  15. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    ....or, the 2 lens option.

    1. Pana 14-140
    2. Pana Leica 25

    The list could go on and on. We're lucky in m43 land with SO many lenses to choose from.

    Lol.....and then there is the 'money is NO object' travel lens list, but then you do need a plane ticket right ?
  16. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I generally gravitate towards primes.... naturally the 14, 20 and 45 fit nicely.
  17. strang

    strang Mu-43 Veteran

    May 7, 2012
    I travel a lot and I build my gear with this in mind. Weight, size, image quality are all important factors. For your destinations, weather seal is nice but may not be necessary. So take the 12-50 with you, it may come in handy and doubles as a macro.

    I traveled a lot of SE Asia, Thailand, China (north and southeastern coast and the western basin). Chinese north is very much like Mongolia climate but more technologically advanced.

    I usually take what is in my signature (9-18, 25, 14-150) but you should have an accompanying weather sealed lens. I'm trying to justify buying the 35-100 or the 60 right now. Both are weather sealed and good lenses (hopefully 35-100 turns out good). I am leaning toward the 60 a bit because it's 1/3 the price of the 35-100.

    Don't underestimate the power of a superzoom. It is the lens that stays on at all times during the day outdoors. Especially if you're in vehicle sometimes, you never know what focal length you're going to need.

    If you're going to these locations in the summer time, be ware of rain. When it rains, find shelter, it may take a while. Trust me you don't want to catch a cold in these places. So your photo opportunities may not be as much as you think. When you see something interesting take them quickly.

    Definitely get a waterproof pack.
  18. arentol

    arentol Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 29, 2012
    I agree with this. Inexpensive (relatively), light, and small setup.

    The 7.5 covers your need for really wide landscape and architecture shots.
    The 20mm is a great general purpose fast lens for evening shooting.
    The 12-50 can be on the camera most of the day and cover almost all shooting situation outdoors.
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