If you could have just one...

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by dixeyk, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. dixeyk

    dixeyk TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jun 18, 2012
    Bellingham . WA
    Real Name:
    Over the past 10 tears I have been steadily reducing the amount of stuff I have. I think this comes from having to deal with cancer and losing house, car, business, savings, retirement...you get the picture. In the end all I was left with was a couple of storage rooms full of cr*p and since then I have slowly been ridding myself of all the things of my old life. It was as if I died the day I was diagnosed and I don't even recognize a lot of that stuff as being mine anymore, and as a result of this I have found that having stuff I don't use really bugs me. As many of you have seen I have gone through a lot of cameras and lenses in the past two years. I try stuff and if I like it it stays around and if I don't like it or more importantly don't use it I sell it off. I figure I can always reacquire it if I want to (and have on a few occasions). I am also by nature a collector. I see something and if it's a good deal or something I fancy and can afford it I'll grab it. This means I up purging my gear and within a few months collecting more of it. For whatever reason I seems to have reached a type of equilibrium with two bodies but lenses are another matter all together. At any one time I have fifteen or twenty floating around. The thing is, I only really use a few. As much as I'd love to say that I use all sorts of focal lengths I'd be lying. I am a creature of habit and can make do with a single focal length pretty well if I have to.

    I also posted this over on mu-43 and withmy GX1 it's PL45/2.8 (easily) however with the NEX I shoot only manual focus lenses and I assumed my choice would be very different because the experience shooting MF on the NEX is so different. I found it a good deal harder to choose just one but I can narrow it down and say that I could be equally happy with any of the following in no particular order:

    Vivitar 28/2 Close Focus
    Konica Hexanon 24/2.8
    Olympus Pen-F 38/1.8

    Interestingly they all have a short MFD (the Pen-F 38/1.8 having the longest) and while none is a macro like the PL45 it does seem to be a quality that appeals to me when choosing my lenses.
  2. nianys

    nianys TalkEmount All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    First of all, the foreword of your post is humbling. The perspective of losing all possessions, along with the risk of losing life itself, sure makes for a much less materialist approach of things.
    Photographers and gear lovers easily tend to collect. Personally I re-sell just about everything that doesn't really float my boat, but I know some of us just tend to accumulate lenses.
    Shooting m4/3 for the past 7 months (now over, using NEX now), I learned to use a much more limited kit, as despite the varied lens offering for the format, very few held my attention or sparked my interest. Basically I could have lived with the PL25 forever and not needed anything else, ever. This lens really must be among the very best (if not THE best) I've ever had the pleasure to use, and I've had my share of Canon L glass, excellent Nikkor lenses, and the widlly underrated, but nonetheless brilliant high end EX Sigmas.
    I also used the excellent Panny 14-45, and the cheapo but super well performing Oly 40-150. I wouldn't have shed a tear to be stripped of either and left with the PL though, yes, it's THAT good that it negates the use for anything else.
    Now into NEX territory, I haven't had a chance to try any other native lens that the 18-55, that seems good enough optically, too bad the camera can't AF to save its life, compared to the m4/3 offerings, specifically the GX-1. I have, hovewer, tried already a couple of manual lenses, and had awesome fun with them. Of course it's way to early to make any definite statement, but I know that if I could have only one lens it would be a 35mm, giving 50mm FF equivalent. That's the length I'm totally comfortable with (even though I've been shooting only longer options ever since getting my NEX, since I'm still waiting on the adapter to use my Hexanon 35/2).
    I expect the SEL 35/1.8 to put an end to some of my manual focusing frenzy, only if it's any capable at AF at all. If not, and if the general current AF scheme remains unchanged on NEX, I might take a walk on the Fuji side of things... The X cameras have been delivering exactly the IQ I pine for, and they offer native 1:1 ratio, which I wish the NEX did. The only thing keeping me from buying into the Fuji system is the lack of Focus Peaking.
  3. korn_2956

    korn_2956 TalkEmount Regular

    Jun 11, 2012
    Yeah I'm having trouble deciding between the 6 and the xe1
  4. Poki

    Poki TalkEmount Hall of Famer

    Aug 30, 2011
    I'm short of time, so here's a short answer: If I only could use one lens, it would be the 24mm Zeiss for E-Mount. It has a great value and I can't remember many lenses I loved so much for both the experience when using them and the pictures I get. If it would only be pin sharp when focused on infinity it would be my perfect lens.
  5. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Aug 6, 2011
    I only have two lenses for NEX - the Sony 16 and the Sigma 19. I like both, but the 19mm AOV suits me better, so I use it more. It also has better edge/corner performance than the Sony.

    If I could only have one lens, were buying based on specs, and could include future lenses that have been announced, it would be the Zeiss 32/1.8: New Family of Lenses for Mirrorless System Cameras | Camera Lens Blog

    I'm 99% sure that lens is going to rock.
  6. krugorg

    krugorg TalkEmount Regular

    Aug 17, 2012
    Sigma 19mm for me too (it is actually my only native NEX lens currently!), but my future pick/guess is the Sony 35/1.8 with OSS. I am thinking that lens is going to be a good one and I kind of like having that stabilization security blanket. ;)
  7. Dioptrick

    Dioptrick TalkEmount All-Pro

    Feb 4, 2012
    New Zealand
    Tough call... so, at this moment in time...

    Of my existing lenses, I'd say my Tamron 24mm f2.5 and happy to stay with the 5N. If I had to choose one native prime, the Sony Carl Zeiss 24mm f/1.8 gets my vote.

    If I had to choose between the NEX6 or the NEX7... easy choice for me, NEX6 most definitely.
  8. Phoenix

    Phoenix TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Aug 25, 2011
    Melbourne, Australia
    Real Name:
    Phoenix Gonzales
    Cameras come and go, but as for lenses, I've always been a 50's person, I used to own Voigtlander 50mm 1.5 which I decided to sell (I still regret it to this day, and probably always will) when I moved to the cropped sensors as it translated to a 75. I have since then bought a Voigtlander 35mm 1.2 which translates to a 50 on a cropped sensor.

    So if I could have just one, it would be a reasonable fast 50.
  9. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    Aug 22, 2012
    Bah, I have recently decided to live with just 2 lenses, the 50 f1.8 and 18-200LE. I simply could *not* reduce it further than that (well ok, until Sony come out with a nice pancake 18-250 f1.8-4.0 OSS :p). But honestly, if I had to, had to, had to it would have to be a 24-70 f2.8 with a FF DSLR body probably. Which is kind of cheating because I would never spend that much on a single lens/body combination, but if I had to throw out all the alternatives, these would come to the same cost anyway!
  10. snkenai

    snkenai TalkEmount Regular

    Jan 22, 2012
    Campbellsville, Ky
    Real Name:
    Stephen Noel
    I am using the Sigma 30mm f2.8 as my primary, on the E-p2, which gives the 60mm equiv.

    That is close enough to 50mm equiv., for my prefered FL. On the NEX (if I had one) the 30mm would still be acceptable, but a 35mm would be better.

    I also use an old Vivitar Series 1, occasionally for long shots. I have other lenses, but just don't use them much.

    Going on a 3 week road trip in couple days, that will include my daughter's wedding, so will also take a 50mm and m43 adapter, that may not get used.

    Only one? Of my current choices, 30mm.
  11. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Real Name:
    My experience is not camera related, but more about the way that stuff can crowd up your life.

    My wife went through the same ordeal with Craft/scrapbooking stuff. We had an entire room full of stuff, most of which had not been touched for a year or more. The room was a disaster, stuff pilling up, most of it dust collecting and so disorganized.

    When we decided to become foster parents we needed to consolidate a bunch of stuff so that the kids could have that room. It was tough for her to go through and eliminate stuff. She kept thinking of the project she wanted to do, or even coming up with new ones as she cleaned.

    However now that she eliminated a bunch of stuff and it is nice and organized, she is much happier. She now knows exactly what she has and get to it easily.