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Thread: 2016-What was used

  1. #1
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    2016-What was used

    I have mentioned a couple of times that I have developed a system where I shoot all year long, then I assess and adjust my kit over the following winter. I have been doing so for a couple of years now and I have to say I am very pleased overall to the point where I am not anticipating any major changes. But I thought I would share a few observations.

    First, my usage by lens:


    Lens
    Usage (%)
    EF 24-70 II 38
    Sigma 150-600S 31
    70-200 II 9
    70-300 L 8
    16-35 f/4 IS 7
    EFm 18-55 2
    Sigma 50A 2
    EFm 22 2
    100 L 1
    Rokinon 14 f/2.8 UMC 1
    Not Used:
    TSE 24 f/3.5 II
    EF 40 mm f/2.8


    In the past, if a lens wasn't used, I would sell it, but I am going to hold on to both the TSE 24 f/3.5 and 40 pancake.

    So that is by the numbers, but in terms of priority for me, the 24-70 II lives on my 5DIII. I would say I actually "use" it over half of the time. The 150-600S, while has a lot of shots, was mostly used for 5-6 "events" where I was intentionally shooting wildlife. I am still processing some of those "events," having already focused on the best shots and simply have not yet deleted all the other shots. So, after I do that, the number of keepers from the 150-600S will go down dramatically. My second "favorite" lens is the 70-200 II. If I had to have only 2 lenses, it would be the 24-70 II and 70-200 II.

    One of my pleasant surprises has been the 70-300L that I picked it up last year. I really enjoy using it, am very impressed with the IQ, and it travels great (the intended purpose). Then the 16-35 f/4 IS is great for waterfalls and in tight spaces such as cities.

    My travel kit has become some variation of:
    • EF 16-35 f/4 IS (if UWA is anticipated)
    • EF 24-70 II (always, although I've thought about traveling with the 50A instead to see how I like that)
    • EF 70-200 II (if portraits/family is involved)
    • EF 70-300 L (if not taking the 70-200 II)
    • 150-600S (if wildlife shots are anticipated)

    I usually travel with 2-3 of the above.

    In terms of what to do next, I am very happy with my kit. I also do not perceive any glaring holes. A few minor holes would be my small/compact camera set up for when I do not want to bring the 5DIII kit, being able to shoot f/4-5.6 at long focal lengths (I am almost always at f/8 with the 150-600S), and some workflow gear like a better monitor or a traveling laptop. Also, prime lenses always tempt me a little (EF 135 f/2, MPE 65, or something in the 20-24 mm range), for the wider aperture, vignetting, and premium sharpness.

    Ultimately, what I think I have decided is a combination of trying to make my M kit more appealing, picking up a nicer P&S so I always have a camera with me, some travel flashes (just picked up a second 270 ex, refurbished), and either a guided trip or photography course.

    As for the M, I am thinking it gets another year. If it doesn't work out or I prefer the P&S, then I'll sell off my M kit next winter.

    So, that is my winter "gear" plan. I would be interested if anyone else has any thoughts.

    Thanks. Brant

  2. #2
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    Interesting though, I am thinking of starting to keep separate Lightroom Catalogues for each year and then I can get similar reporting each year. It would be interesting to filter usage and favorite images by lens. This could produce some interesting reports.

    I need to query some from my current catalogue that goes back to when I started shooting,
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  3. #3
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    I divide up and have 1 catalog per "event" that I shoot with a few random "catch all" catalogs like "2016 Misc" if I just run out into the yard and snap 3 shots of turkeys or something. But making these was very ease as I just made a new catalog and imported all my 2016 files.

    The above was when I imported all my remaining RAW files. I thought that would skew things for the 150-600S, as I still have a lot of shots I took with it that I haven't yet gone through from a birding trip and the Alaska trip. So I just created a second catalog by importing all the jpeg files I have created. I know not everyone does this, but I keep both RAW and jpeg of my "keeper" shots with the jpegs being distributed to family, friends, and posted online.

    My lens use based on the "keeper" jpeg shots that I have processed thus far:

    Lens
    Usage (%)
    EF 24-70 II 48
    EF 70-200 II 19
    EF 16-35 f/4 IS 8
    Sigma 150-160S 8
    EF 70-300 L 4
    EF 100 L Macro 4
    EFm 18-55 3
    Sigma 50A 3
    EFm 22 f/2 2
    Rokinon 14 mm f/2.8 1


    When I am done processing shots, I expect the 150-600S and 70-300L to rise a few %. Both have significant unprocessed RAW shots from different trips. After that, the usage feels about right.

  4. #4
    Senior Member neuroanatomist's Avatar
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    I occasionally check usage (I use Aperture Inspector for the Mac), but not annually. I did just have a look for 2016 (like you, I base stats on the RAW files that I've processed although I'm current except for a few on the cards in 1D X). I was actually a bit surprised by the results.

    For cameras, my usage was 66% the 1D X and 34% the EOS M2. I used the little M2 much more than I though I would!

    As for lenses, the top three were used for 3/4 of my shots and were:
    EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM – 33%
    EF-M 11-22mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM – 23%
    EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM – 20%

    The 24-70mm was typically #1 (it's still #1 for all time use, 17% of total shots), but this year the girls have been more active with indoor activities – swimming and gymnastics, and in late fall they added horseback riding (which in New England late fall/winter, is an indoor arena activity!).

    This year, I only use the 600/4L IS II for a small fraction of shots (<1%), mainly lack of time to get out to birding locations (Brant, we should get together this winter!).

    Definitely an interesting exercise. Thanks for sharing, Brant!

  5. #5
    Senior Member Photog82's Avatar
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    I'll have to try this as well; did you just create a catalog in LR and use the META data filter to get your totals? My numbers will be off due to several purchases through the 2nd half of the year.
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  6. #6
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    I usually check a few times a year, and then try to use the lesser used lenses.

    For Cameras, my usage was 66% Canon 6D & 30% to the Sony A6000. The other 4% went to the Canon 7D (Sold in July).

    As for my lenses,
    Sigma 20 Art - 26% (skewed due to a time lapse)
    Canon 35 IS - 17% (my walk around lens)
    Sony 50 OSS - 16% (my walk around lens for A6000)
    Tokina 16-28 - 12% (sold to get the Sigma 20 Art)
    Tamron 90 VC - 8% (purchased in October, used primarily for a wedding)
    The other 21% is spread across 12 other lenses!

    When I go on any sort of trip, my kit is usually the Sigma 20, Canon 35 IS, a macro and a Tamron 70-200 non-vc all on the 6D.

    Overall I am happy with my kit, although looking ahead, I would like to upgrade my Canon 50 1.4....looking at the Tamron 45 or Sigma 50 or the Canon 45 TSE. I also would like to go wider than my Sigma 20, but really can't justify the Sigma 12-24.

    Very good post Brant!
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  7. #7
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by neuroanatomist View Post
    This year, I only use the 600/4L IS II for a small fraction of shots (<1%), mainly lack of time to get out to birding locations (Brant, we should get together this winter!).
    Definitely....

    Quote Originally Posted by Photog82 View Post
    I'll have to try this as well; did you just create a catalog in LR and use the META data filter to get your totals? My numbers will be off due to several purchases through the 2nd half of the year.
    Exactly what I did.

    Quote Originally Posted by Manofmayo66 View Post
    I usually check a few times a year, and then try to use the lesser used lenses.

    For Cameras, my usage was 66% Canon 6D & 30% to the Sony A6000. The other 4% went to the Canon 7D (Sold in July).

    As for my lenses,
    Sigma 20 Art - 26% (skewed due to a time lapse)
    Canon 35 IS - 17% (my walk around lens)
    Sony 50 OSS - 16% (my walk around lens for A6000)
    Tokina 16-28 - 12% (sold to get the Sigma 20 Art)
    Tamron 90 VC - 8% (purchased in October, used primarily for a wedding)
    The other 21% is spread across 12 other lenses!

    When I go on any sort of trip, my kit is usually the Sigma 20, Canon 35 IS, a macro and a Tamron 70-200 non-vc all on the 6D.

    Overall I am happy with my kit, although looking ahead, I would like to upgrade my Canon 50 1.4....looking at the Tamron 45 or Sigma 50 or the Canon 45 TSE. I also would like to go wider than my Sigma 20, but really can't justify the Sigma 12-24.

    Very good post Brant!
    Thanks.

    Wow, you and John are getting a lot more use out of your smaller body than I am (just 4% of my total).

    I upgraded from the Canon 50 f/1.4 to the Sigma 50A. Bigger, heavier, more expensive but love the IQ. I should use it more for routine shots. I tend to go after shallow Dof or low light situations with it. If I were upgrading now, I would also be tempted by the Tamron (not released when I upgraded) as well as the Sigma.

    As for affordable and wider than the Sigma 20 f/1.4, have you considered the Samyang/Rokinon/Bower 14 f/2.8 UMC? Only issue is getting a good copy as they definitely have quality control issues. I bought two, one was badly decentered and the other is an amazingly sharp lens. A good amount of distortion, but overall, a great lens.
    Last edited by Kayaker72; 12-29-2016 at 10:56 PM.

  8. #8
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    This last year was a light year for me. I know that it would be the 70-200 for snaps and grand daughter soccer and then the 150-600 for the bird trips being like 75% or so. 16-35 for effectively the remainder, rounding error would be the 90 ts, 50 or 24 art.
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  9. #9
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    I find I keep the A6000 in the car in the warmer months and then take it to the dog park. I also use it when I am using my older manual lenses (I sure do love being able to zoom to focus in the viewfinder).

    I rented the Tamron 45 VC this summer and was pleasantly surprised at the IQ. I like the thought of having VC too, but I know the IQ is much better on the Sigma 50A. Looking back at 2014 & 2015, I used the 50 1.4 more than this last year, and while most of the photos were taken at f2 to f4, I know I would have rather gone with 1.4 instead.

    I have the 14 f2.8 and while it is a phenomenal lens for astro, the quality control issues concern me. But at the price, and buying at a reputable dealer, should help with getting a good lens. If the Tamron 15-30 VC wasn't so pricey, I would have probably ordered one by now.
    ---
    Way too much gear and even more lighting equipment.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Dave Throgmartin's Avatar
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    Sorting by keepers is the way to go I think. Knowing which lens is used a lot, but rarely results in a keepers might be a good tip on what to sell

    Dave

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