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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Hidden Lens Gems.
Nic Coury, Photographer
Monterey | CA | | Posted: 3:17 PM on 09.22.13
->> I was chatting with a colleague the other day about lens we like that aren't part of the "standard pro" glass, namely stuff like the L-series or f/1.4. and I got a few I figure I'd share.

A motorcycle racing colleague swears by the Sigma 15-30mm f/3.5-4.5 and I found one for around $250 and it's really freakin' nice for the rare times I shoot wide. Sigma has a 14mm that is killer too.

Switching to Canon at the office, Gerry McCarthy recommended the 28mm f/2.8 IS from Canon and it's nothing short of amazing. I love it and the other small IS primes are pretty neat looking as well.

What other hidden gems you all have?
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Kent Nishimura, Student/Intern, Photographer
Colorado Springs | CO | USA | Posted: 3:34 PM on 09.22.13
->> because of you and Gerry, I just picked up a 28IS myself...
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Nic Coury, Photographer
Monterey | CA | | Posted: 3:49 PM on 09.22.13
->> One of us! One of us!
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Wally Nell, Photographer
SAN DIEGO | CA | USA | Posted: 3:50 PM on 09.22.13
->> Canon 35 f2, light, sharp, a little noisy, but great for documentary work...
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Jim Colburn, Photographer
Omaha | NE | USA | Posted: 5:28 PM on 09.22.13
->> The new Canon 35mm f/2 IS. It's bigger than the old 35/2 but (IMO) sharper plus the IS gives you another few stops hand held.
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James Broome, Photographer
Tampa | FL | US | Posted: 6:44 PM on 09.22.13
->> I own the Sigma 14mm. Great bargain glass.
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Jack Kurtz, Photographer
Bangkok | Bangkok | Thailand | Posted: 7:08 PM on 09.22.13
->> Canon 40mm f2.8. Tiny, cheap and sharp. (Under $200)
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Michael Prengler, Photographer
Dallas / Ft. Worth | TX | USA | Posted: 7:39 PM on 09.22.13
->> Nikon 300mm f/4 AF you can get one near mint for $500.
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Dave Prelosky, Photographer
Lower Burrell | Pa | US | Posted: 8:25 PM on 09.22.13
->> I borrowed a Sigma 8mm to shoot large fireworks displays in early August. Big Fun.


When I asked NPS if perhaps they had an example of their version sitting around gathering dust, the reply was "Sir, you may want to look at our current product catalog...."
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Jacob Langston, Photographer
Orlando | FL | | Posted: 11:06 PM on 09.22.13
->> If you get a good copy, the Sigma 50mm 1.4 for Canon is one of the best lenses out there. Just picked up a Canon 28mm 1.8, haven't tested it yet, hope it doesn't disappoint. The Canon 85mm 1.8 is also pretty slick.
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Mike Burley, Photographer
Dubuque | IA | USA | Posted: 11:21 PM on 09.22.13
->> Cant beat the thrifty fifty. Canon's 50mm 1.8 is around $90; Noisy, but dead on sharp.
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Jeff Fusco, Photographer
Philadelphia | PA | USA | Posted: 12:02 AM on 09.23.13
->> The 28 2.8 IS has turned into my fave lens. Thinking of switching from the 35L 1.4 to the 35 F2 IS I like it that much. That 28 is so tack sharp with stunning color. I also second that 40mm pancake. What a cool little sharp lens for next to nothing. I also had one of those siggy 15-30's. It was really nice and for the money cannot be beat. It was just such a flare magnet, we had to part ways.
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Brian Blanco, Photographer
Tampa / Sarasota | FL | USA | Posted: 12:41 AM on 09.23.13
->> Nikon's 28mm f/1.8G is a cheap and plasticy-feeling but is one FANTASTIC performer. It made me ditch my more expensive 24mm f/1.4 and 35mm f/1.4 because I just wasn't reaching for them any more... yeah, it's THAT good.
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Travis Haughton, Photographer
Oak Park | IL | USA | Posted: 2:08 AM on 09.23.13
->> Nikon's 35 f/1.8. While technically a DX lens, I used it all the time on my D3. It does vignette some, but it's not too bad wide open. Especially if you plan to crop just slightly later.

It's available under $200, extremely sharp and very fast focusing.
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Tim Snow, Photographer
Montreal | Qc | Canada | Posted: 9:19 AM on 09.23.13
->> I Absolutely love my 135mm f/2L, stunningly sharp even wide open, it's a killer lens. I use it all the time for concerts, news and weddings.
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Daniel Berman, Photographer, Assistant
Seattle | WA | US | Posted: 11:24 AM on 09.23.13
->> You can't beat the nifty 50 1.8
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Chris Peterson, Photographer, Photo Editor
Columbia Falls | MT | USA | Posted: 12:24 PM on 09.23.13
->> Leica 21 f2.8 aspherical. A gem for sure ;-0
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Brooks Canaday, Photographer
Brookline | MA | USA | Posted: 7:57 PM on 09.23.13
->> I can't say enough about the Tokina 16-28 ƒ/2.8. It's a fraction of the cost of the Nikon/Canon equivalents, far better constructed than most Tokina lenses and has never let me down with sharpness, focus or color. It's definitely a brick like the Nikon 14-24 but when you need a versatile ultra-wide, there's nothing else I'd rather use.

A close second is the Nikon 24 ƒ/2.8. Cheap, tiny and sharp with surprisingly smooth background blur, it pretty much lives on my D700 as a carry-around lens.
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Alvin Jornada, Photographer
Santa Rosa | CA | USA | Posted: 8:56 PM on 09.23.13
->> Nikon's 28 f/1.8G, for sure. I was skeptical at first, because of the lightweight, plastic feel Blanco mentioned above, but it really is a sharp lens. Focuses very closely too; I've used it as an ad hoc macro in a pinch. It gets used on every assignment. Well worth the cost. Kept me from dropping more than twice the money on the 24mm f/1.4 too.
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Doug Holleman, Photographer
Belton | TX | USA | Posted: 11:38 PM on 09.24.13
->> Tokina is making some really good lenses nowdays. The 11-16mm f/2.8 is super sharp. And you can even use it on the long end full frame on an FX DSLR.

For day games, I really like Nikon's 18-200mm DX. It's all I need to carry on my second camera.
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Nik Habicht, Photographer
Levittown | PA | USA | Posted: 11:54 PM on 09.24.13
->> Canon 70-200 f/4L --the non IS version is a sharp, light bargain at ~ $700. You could own it and a 135 f/2 for less money than the 2.8L IS II version of the 70-200.....

Given the high ISO performance of the latest body, I'd be happy with it for my zoom.....
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Baron Sekiya, Photographer, Photo Editor
Hilo | HI | USA | Posted: 10:50 PM on 09.28.13
->> I have to second Nik's recommendation of the Canon 70-200/4L. It's light, sharp, much smaller and cheaper than the 2.8L. Buy the Chinese knock-off tripod collar for it on Ebay and it's a keeper.
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Stanley Leary, Photographer
Roswell | GA | USA | Posted: 4:18 PM on 09.29.13
->> Nikon 28-300mm ƒ/3.5-5.6

Due to the technology of Lens Profiles now part of the cameras and in Lightroom when shooting RAW, many lenses are much sharper and better than we ever could have experienced with film.

While this is my go to lens for most things, I still cannot say enough about the Nikon 14-24mm ƒ/2.8. One of the sharpest lenses I own. I love the color that the coating technology delivers out of the camera.
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Chuck Steenburgh, Photographer
Lexington | VA | USA | Posted: 4:10 PM on 09.30.13
->> I was reminded again this weekend why I hang on to my Nikkon 180/f2.8 AF (original version). Had to send the 70-200/f2.8 into the shop but churned out great shot after great shot with the 180 on my D600.

I bought it over a decade ago during the heyday of eBay when bargains were to be had...for $250. Great shape; it's the ugly smooth platicky version that everyone has always hated. Except it is razor sharp and focuses pretty quickly (internal focus).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/91812713@N02/9985861466/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/91812713@N02/9985517083/in/photostream/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/91812713@N02/9985446756/in/photostream/
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Armando Solares, Photographer
Englewood | FL | USA | Posted: 11:40 AM on 10.01.13
->> Canon 40mm 2.8 pancake lens - sharp, small, cheap $150
Canon 24mm T/S - sharp, not cheap.
Canon 85mm 1.8 sharp
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Thread Title: Hidden Lens Gems.
Thread Started By: Nic Coury
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