Tai Shimizu

iOS & Mac Developer

Creator of the iOS photography apps Gridditor & Filterstorm, the Mac drawing app Inkist, the Mac HDR app Light Compressor, and the experimental web browser Torii.

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The Big Lens Decision

As I leave for Japan on Saturday, I am faced with a decision many have dealt with — what lenses do I take?

Option 1

Take only the jack of all trades Nikkor 18-200 f/3.5–5.6 AF-S VR. It will keep me from missing shots, the IQ is good enough, I won’t have to swap lenses and I’ll have AF, and it will save on space in my luggage.

Option 2

Add either my 35mm f/2 AI-S or my 24mm f/2 AI-S to the 18-200 for night/low light.

Option 3

Pull a Henri Cartier-Bresson, and take only the 35mm f/2 AI-S. I love this lens, and kind of like this option, but am afraid I’ll miss too many shots sticking to just ~50mm equivalent.

Option 4

Take the ultra wide Tokina 11-16mm & 18-200mm

Option 5

Use the Tokina 11-16mm & 35mm f/2 AI-S

There’s a number of other things I’m considering, but these seem the most likely right now. I could merely bring a lot of lenses and choose one or two before heading out each day.

Posted by tai on 2009-05-19 09:02:23. Comments (4) | Tiny link

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Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

With option 1, you may get bored. Option 4 seems reasonable but option 4 with 35mm sounds good. It all depends on what you want to shoot.

Posted by cameraman on 2009-05-19 22:16:28.


That’s part of my problem. I’m still not sure exactly what I’m doing and hence taking pictures of. I do think you’re right though in picking something with the 11-16. There will be a lot of landscape and cityscape I’ll want to capture with an ultra-wide.

Posted by tai on 2009-05-20 06:17:22.

take the holiday lens thats what its for.

I have been on holiday to japan.. You don’t want to be swapping lenses on holiday...and getting dust on your sensor...

Option 4.

Posted by heartyfisher on 2009-05-20 10:09:45.


It seems people are gravitating towards the 18–200 + 11–16 option. Maybe I’ll add in the 24mm f/2 for nighttime in the city (Osaka) and be done with it.

Posted by tai on 2009-05-20 10:19:58.
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