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Thread: Lens to pair with RP for travel

  1. #1
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    Lens to pair with RP for travel

    I would value input of forum members about the best lenses to pair with the EOS RP for travel.

    This would be used for vacation to cities in North America and Europe. Previously I had always used a crop sensor camera for such trips. This time I plan to use the Canon RP for better performance in cathedrals, museums, restaurants, and other low light venues.

    The camera and lens will be carried many hours per day, day after day. The goal is for the weight of cameral plus lens to total less than 32 ounces. A second lens in the bag could add up to 16 ounces or so.

    I do have an adapter, so I could use either EF or RF lenses, The adapter adds about 3 ounces. Here are candidate lenses I own or can borrow from family members:

    EF 28mm f/2.8 USM IS

    RF 35mm f/1.8 STM IS

    EF 40mm f/2.8 STM

    RF 50 mm f/1.8 STM

    RF 85mm f/2 STM IS

    EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 STM IS

    Of course, the RF 24-105 f/4-7.1 seems designed for this niche. However, from Bryan’s test charts and from images on Flickr, the image quality seems disappointing for the midframe to the periphery. (Extreme corners are bad, but typically that does not matter for this purpose.) Do forum members find they can fix this IQ in post-processing? Is there a third party zoom that would be light enough and have IS? I would consider purchase of a zoom that was just right for this purpose.

    The RF 35mm f1.8 STM seems a good option. But would it be better to have the EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM with adapter? Very few shots would benefit from an aperture wider than 2.8 for these vacation shots. With the 35mm there would be occasional need to merge 2-3 handheld shots. Less merging with the 28mm, but other shots would require more cropping. For my taste, the perceptual distance between foreground and background with the 28 mm occasionally de-emphasizes the background too much

    For a second lens, the RF 50mm STM is very attractive in terms of size and weight. But it lacks IS and the focal length is not very long. Maybe the RF 85mm f/2 ? Or maybe a crazy possibility like the EF-S 55-250mm ? That would produce 10 megapixel files, which should be good enough since there would be little additional cropping in post.

    I enjoy the typical threads here about high-end gear, but I welcome your thoughts about these more humble options.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    RF 24-240 and the 50 f/1.8?

    On my phone now, but I was looking at both recently and the seem good for the price. Size weight could make that a good travel combination.

    That would be one thought, but would require a new lens. Another thought would be to take your 35 f/1.8 and rent the RF 70-200 f/4.

    But, in my mind there is nothing wrong with limiting yourself to a couple focal lengths. You get the pictures that fit those focal lengths, a bit like an old school range finder mentality.

    Out of your list, the EF 28 f/2.8 for wider angles and the 50 f/1.8 would likely be my choice with the 85 f/2 as an option. Pick two of those three.


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    Senior Member Fast Glass's Avatar
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    I agree with Kayaker with the idea of a good general zoom. I don't view primes as a good option strictly by themselves. Unless you know exactly what works for you.

    An ultra wide like a 14mm and a 24-105mm would be a good option.

    Personally I have and love my 16-35mm and 85mm. Makes a good combo for me lately for a walk in the park.

    But, if I had my way for a trip around the US and Europe I'd get the 11-24mm or 16-35mm f/2.8, 24-70mm f/2.8, 70-200mm f/2.8 IS II or III. If I had to drop one lens from that list it be the 70-200mm. But that's just me.

    If I know I want to do some birding and wildlife I'd pack my 300mm f/2.8. It makes an awesome distant landscape lens as well. But I'd have a hard time justifying it if weight is even remotely a factor. Lol.

    Hopefully that gives you something to think about and a wet stone for your mind.
    Last edited by Fast Glass; 01-29-2022 at 04:15 AM.

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    I appreciate the input. Sounds like you both feel that 35mm is not wide enough, something that worried me, too. The EF 28mm with adapter performs well on the RP, so that I will likely use for the wide shots.

    The lenses you mention, Fast Glass, are heavier than I want to carry for this kind of trip. The RF 24-240 IQ concerns me for the important 28-50mm range of focal length.

    I would love any feedback from forum members who have real-world experience with that lens , or with the RF 24-105 f/4-7.1. Maybe the mid-frame is better than I think from test charts.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Fast Glass's Avatar
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    It also depends on how much effort you want to put into your shots. If you are putting a lot of effort into it and going to locations for amazing pics and spending time and effort planing and waiting for the perfect light ect. It might be worth while extending your kit weight a few oz's if it makes a big difference. You don't always have to take your whole kit to every location nessarily.

    A wide angle and a 24-105mm like say a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 and 24-105mm is really not that heavy. If you want a long end that is light weight and decent quality the 70-300mm DO would be once such alternative. The other way to think about it is to leave a lens in the car you know for sure probably won't be useful. So let's say you are going to a place with sweeping vistas. You probably get away with a 14 prime or just a 24-105mm. Or if you are going to a zoo. You might just want the 70-300mm DO or 70-200mm of some flavor.

    Just because you have three lenses, you don't always have to take it with you. Many times I take only 1 or 2 lenses if I know exactly what I want to do.

    Just my 2 cents. But do not set arbitrary number goals. The way I would look at it is keep them as guide lines, try and shoot for that. But don't get worked up over a few oz's difference if it makes a big difference for you. And of course I'm assuming you will try out your kit before your trip to see if it fits your goals.

    But the heavier kit is just my preference. You absolutely don't have to go that heavy and have a more than capable setup.

    Again as always, this is just my two cents. I'm sure you will make the right choice in the end for your goals and preferences.

    To put it into context, I'd hike around my old Minolta MD 600mm f/6.3 (For 12 years) which was similar weight and longer than the 300mm f/2.8 IS I have now. I had a 1Ds III mounted on my 300 and a 1D III in the other hand and just took it to the park for some birding and walked probably 2 miles. I take breaks and set it down once in a while. But it's not horrible and considered a lightweight alternative with extenders to the awesome 500mm or 600mm options. With some breaks and planning even a very heavy combo is definitely doable. That whole combo while not light, is 186 oz's in the hand. And I didn't get a sore wrist or arm afterwards.

    As you know, many birders use a 500mm f/4 and that's much heavier than a 300mm f/2.8 and other still use the 400mm f/2.8 IS or 600mm f/4 IS, first gen. Now those are heavy weights especially with a 1-series and a tripod and anything else you might pack along!

    I think your weight goals are very very light and don't worry about going over it a bit.
    Last edited by Fast Glass; 01-30-2022 at 03:41 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Fast Glass's Avatar
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    If I haven't made it known by now I'm not excessively worried about weight. Lol.

    But I do understand that not everyone is me. I'm just trying think out loud and maybe look at it in other ways. Even if you go for a very light weight setup you at least looked at it from all sides and are confident you made the right choice for you application.

    But more to the topic, I don't think you can go wrong with a 24-105mm. Very good IQ in a extremely versatile package. If this was your only lens you could take many fine photographs with it.

    If you matched it up with compact prime and you have a very versatile setup that doesn't weigh a ton by any means.

    Ok, I'll be quiet now.
    Last edited by Fast Glass; 01-30-2022 at 06:12 AM.

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    Fast Glass, thanks for your further thoughts. And by the way, congratulations on your 300mm f/2.8 IS, which I have rented in the past and found a great lens.

    For a trip by car to a national park, I am completely with you. I usually would carry the EF 16-35mm f/4, the EF 50mm f/1.4 and the EF 70-200mm f/4 IS for such an occasion, with a 5D body. I might carry that for 2-3 hours, then back to the car.

    The trips I was envisioning would entail 10-12 hours a day on my feet, with occasional short breaks for a light meal or coffee. Then "rinse and repeat" for several days in a row. And I think you are younger than I--the big 70 is looming! So size and weight become important to me.

    I realize the standard answer is to learn to love the RF 24-105mm f/4-7.1, by liberal use of texture and clarity sliders in Lightroom. Still tempting to use the 28mm as main go-to with the 50mm f/1.8 as the alternative.
    Last edited by Minerve101; 01-30-2022 at 06:18 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Fast Glass's Avatar
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    Haha, yes. I didn't realize you are approaching 70. Nothing but respect from me for still being super active at your age. I'm a bit less than half your age. So I understand a lot better with the very long excursions on your feet why you want to go super duper light weight.

    Just being on your feet for 10 to 12 hours a day picture taking is a lot for anyone!

    But I think you are right about the 24-105mm f/4-7.1. With the idea of being as light as practical possible it makes a lot of sense.

    On a side note I was at local zoo all day today. Oh man did my 300 shine over there! Definitely got a lot to comb through but will be posting some soon here.
    Last edited by Fast Glass; 01-31-2022 at 02:49 AM.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator Kayaker72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minerve101 View Post

    This would be used for vacation to cities in North America and Europe. Previously I had always used a crop sensor camera for such trips. This time I plan to use the Canon RP for better performance in cathedrals, museums, restaurants, and other low light venues.

    Focusing on this a bit more, I would be more leaning toward faster glass rather than a less expensive lower weight general purpose zoom.

    Given that, any of the primes on your list could be used, although I might even skew to the f/2 and f/1.8. But I could easily see traveling with the 28 and 50 if shooting wider and the 35 and 85 as another nice pair.

    But, as you've shot like this before, which focal lengths did you use/like the most on crop sensor? Really, that is your answer.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Minerve101 View Post

    This would be used for vacation to cities in North America and Europe. Previously I had always used a crop sensor camera for such trips. This time I plan to use the Canon RP for better performance in cathedrals, museums, restaurants, and other low light venues.
    That statement tells me to take fast primes, on your list the 35mm and 50mm.
    f/2.8 if it has IS, but none on your list do. Anything with an f/4 in it no.

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