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bscull
01-06-2006, 10:38 AM
I have bought a D50 (I love it) with the 18-55mm kit lens and a cosine 100mm AF macro. (It was very cheap; it’s slow and noisy but its takes good macro pictures).

My problem is, I’m looking to start taking landscapes and wildlife pictures. But don’t really know what lens to go for, I have gone through the forum + the lens guide but it just making me more confused.

I happy to spend some money on the right lens but I’m not the bank of England. Any help would be appreciative

Thanks for your help :)

coldrain
01-06-2006, 11:33 AM
Landscape pictures normally would need a wider lens, where as wildlife will need some tele power...

While I do not know my way around tele(zoom)lenses for Nikon, and I do not know what your budget is, it is a bit hard to advice you there, other than that 200mm will usually probably not be enough to get wildlife photos, so that excludes 70-200 and 80-200mm lenses. One cheap and good option I know from my Canon lens trivial knowledge, is that the Sigma 135-400mm is quite sharp at 300-400mm, and it is quite affordable too.

On the wide side, there is a terrific wide angle zoom from Tokina, which outperforms similar lenses from Nikon, Canon, Sigma and Tamron in sharpness and contast, the Tokina f4 12-24mm. It is around 500$ I believe, and will enable you to make very nice panoramic wide views of landscapes without the extreme distortion of fisheye lenses.

goletitout
01-06-2006, 12:31 PM
I own that Tokina 12-24 and have a quastion about it. Is it normal that the lens doesn´t nearly achieve the sharpness of my Nikkor 50mm 1.8 prime lens ? I always hae to use unsharp mask with the Tokina so get it tack sharp.

coldrain
01-06-2006, 12:51 PM
I own that Tokina 12-24 and have a quastion about it. Is it normal that the lens doesn´t nearly achieve the sharpness of my Nikkor 50mm 1.8 prime lens ? I always hae to use unsharp mask with the Tokina so get it tack sharp.
Sometimes a sample of as lens can be less sharp, and primes usually are very sharp. It is hard to tell if your 12-24 has a problem, maybe you can show a 100% cropped picture to show how soft it is?

bscull
01-07-2006, 10:35 AM
The Tokina 12-24 seams a really good lens but for some reason there very hard to get over here (UK), apart from EBay. What is the Sigma 15-30mm F3.5-4.5 EX DG like for landscapes? + Its more in my price bracket £300

coldrain
01-07-2006, 11:03 AM
I was looking at http://www.ajpurdy.co.uk (just came across it via google) and found that the SIGMA 15-30mm f/3.5-4.5 EX DG ASPHERICAL costs 299 pound, the SIGMA 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX DC HSM 319 pound, the Tokina ATX 12-24 AF Pro DX 360 pound.

The two Sigma's are quite good in their own right, the 15-30 being a full frame lens, so fall off ("vignetting") will be not bad. The Sigma 10-20 does have a big falloff to the corners, and is less sharp than the Tokina.

Payne
01-07-2006, 11:58 AM
for landscapes, I guess the Tokina 12-24 is the best inexpensive lens you can get or maybe you can go with the prime Nikon 20mm f2.8 or the Sigma 20mm f1.8 (both are good lenses) -

for wildlife, you will need at least 300mm - the Nikon 300mm f4.0 AF could be the best option for the price ($400 used) - but the nikon 70-300 ED is also a good option if you dont mind some softness at long end. I'd also consider the fast lens nikon 180mm f2.8 + Sigma or kenko 1.4x tc (great combo)

D70FAN
01-07-2006, 05:38 PM
You willl get just as good (and maybe better) results with the Sigma 70-300 APO (red stripe) for under $200 (at B&H). It will save you $100+ over the Nikkor D lens. Arguably the Sigma is best consumer long zoom (i.e. 300mm) available.

bscull
01-07-2006, 06:05 PM
Just too put something else into the mix. How fast is the auto focus? As I like to take motorbike road racing pictures. would the Sigma 70-300 APO be up to the job?

also George R., whats (red stripe) mean?

coldrain
01-07-2006, 06:11 PM
Just too put something else into the mix. How fast is the auto focus? As I like to take motorbike road racing pictures. would the Sigma 70-300 APO be up to the job?

also George R., whats (red stripe) mean?
The APO version has a red stripe I guess, and the cheaper non-APO one does not. The APO means it has better glass elements or coatings, I forgot which one... anyway, its optical performance is better. The DG means they did some more work on the lens to perform even better with digital SLR's in mind.

Payne
01-07-2006, 10:06 PM
Just too put something else into the mix. How fast is the auto focus?

quite slow. :(

goletitout
01-08-2006, 12:40 PM
I´m currently thinking about returning my Tokina 12-24 lens to the dealer and buy a Nikon 24mm f2.8 prime instead. The Tokina is quite good though. There´s just one thing that bugs me: the pics are definitely less sharp than those with my 50mm 1.8 Nikkor (which shouldn´t suprise me, I know)...but even my Canon SD500 compact cam is a tad sharper at 37mm than the Tokina at 24mm(36mm because of crop factor). Ok, the SD500 is very good for an ultra-compact cam, but do I buy a 450 Euro lens like the Tokina for getting the same quality as with the little canon cam ??? I have especially noticed that the Tokina is often softer towards the edges of the frame than the canon sd500...even with the Tokina set to f8 !!!

Do you think the 24mm f2.8 prime could be nearly as sharp as the 50mm 1.8 and probably give me more satisfying results than the Tokina at 24mm ??? Frankly, the 12mm(18mm cropped) at the Tokina´s wide end are very tempting, but I wouldn´t use it too often. Image quality is my main concern, and if the Nikon 24mm 2.8 delivers better concerning that aspect, then I would give up the wide angle flexibility of the Tokina. I don´t want "good" or "reasonably sharp" pics, but tack sharp ones ! Also, the Tokina is a damned big lens compared to a nice little prime...the Tokina hardly fits my camera bag !

coldrain
01-08-2006, 01:13 PM
I´m currently thinking about returning my Tokina 12-24 lens to the dealer and buy a Nikon 24mm f2.8 prime instead. The Tokina is quite good though. There´s just one thing that bugs me: the pics are definitely less sharp than those with my 50mm 1.8 Nikkor (which shouldn´t suprise me, I know)...but even my Canon SD500 compact cam is a tad sharper at 37mm than the Tokina at 24mm(36mm because of crop factor). Ok, the SD500 is very good for an ultra-compact cam, but do I buy a 450 Euro lens like the Tokina for getting the same quality as with the little canon cam ??? I have especially noticed that the Tokina is often softer towards the edges of the frame than the canon sd500...even with the Tokina set to f8 !!!

Do you think the 24mm f2.8 prime could be nearly as sharp as the 50mm 1.8 and probably give me more satisfying results than the Tokina at 24mm ??? Frankly, the 12mm(18mm cropped) at the Tokina´s wide end are very tempting, but I wouldn´t use it too often. Image quality is my main concern, and if the Nikon 24mm 2.8 delivers better concerning that aspect, then I would give up the wide angle flexibility of the Tokina. I don´t want "good" or "reasonably sharp" pics, but tack sharp ones ! Also, the Tokina is a damned big lens compared to a nice little prime...the Tokina hardly fits my camera bag !
I do not have that Tokina myself yet, but a number of tests show it to be a very good wide angle (zoom) lens. Can you show cropped examples showing how soft it is compared to your 50mm?

The german photography magazine tested a lot of lenses including a number of wide angle zooms and wide angle primes, and the results again show the Tokina to be very sharp, even up to prime sharpness in certain focal lengths. I typed them up for informaton for you in the following thread:
http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=16039
As you can see the Tokina performs as good as that 24mm prime you mentioned... and it outperforms primes at wider angles too. This leads me to believe maybe your lens is a soft example, maybe you can try anther one where you got it to see if something is wrong with it.... Again, cropped 100% examples would be useful to be able to say anything about it.

bscull
01-10-2006, 11:07 AM
Thanks for the recommendation :) , I going with the Tokina for my landscaping, but as the auto focus is to slow on the Sigma 70-300 APO, what lens would you recommend for wildlife and motorbike road racing pictures? My budget is around £350.

coldrain
01-10-2006, 11:22 AM
Thanks for the recommendation :) , I going with the Tokina for my landscaping, but as the auto focus is to slow on the Sigma 70-300 APO, what lens would you recommend for wildlife and motorbike road racing pictures? My budget is around £350.
Maybe try the Sigma 70-300 APO DG first, my old 70-300 DL macro superfrom Sigma is not slow with focussing on my Canon 350D.