Lenses for a Beginner in Iceland - Nikon D3400

3 years 4 months ago #630852 by Xerakon
Good morning everyone!

I opted for a trip to Iceland in June, and decided that if I'm going to be spending 2 weeks driving around the island, I should get a proper camera to keep the memories. =) So, I picked up a Nikon D3400 (which came with an AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR lens). I've taken a class at a local shop last weekend, and am anxious to start shooting this weekend. However, I'm now needing to start budgeting for equipment on my journey - which probably the largest expense will be lens(es).

At the photo shop, the salesman recommended a Tamron 18-400mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC HLD lens. However, one of my amateur photo friends was telling me that a wide-angle lens would be better for the sort of sweeping landscape of Iceland. What are you guys' thoughts? I would prefer to stick with a third-party manufacturer like Tamron to lower the costs as well, but budget is somewhat open. =)


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3 years 4 months ago #630897 by garyrhook
First off, I would recommend the Nikon 18-200 or 18-300 for a walk-around lens. I've used it (Nikon D5100) and am still happy with photos taken with it.

Secondly, if you want to do vistas, take multiple shots (portrait mode) with overlap, with the intent of stitching them together in post. Even handheld, with a bit of practice, you can get what you need and finish the work in LR.

That said, The view angle of the 18 on a crop sensor is comparable to the view angle of a 30mm lens on a full frame. Wide angle, but not super wide. You'd need a 14mm or so to get superwide. Thus my suggestion of practicing and making your own panoramic shots.

The IQ of the 18-200 is pretty good, more so for its price point. Generally recommended here. And it's not heavy, nor expensive (and can be easily found used) although it currently lists for the same price as the Tamron. I will suggest that you won't need 400mm in Iceland.

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3 years 4 months ago - 3 years 4 months ago #630900 by Xerakon
Thanks for the heads up! So would you say no to a wide-angle lens then? And just try to splice together multiple shots? I was recommended a Tamron 17-35mm F/2.8-4 Di OSD as a good lens to go with.

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3 years 4 months ago #630984 by garyrhook
There's nothing wrong with having a wide angle lens. But that lens doesn't add anything over a lens that is already at 18mm. You're giving up zoom for 1mm. That makes no sense.

Save lenses like that for a full frame body. IMO, of course, as someone who's done exactly what I'm suggesting you do, and has had a 17-35.

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3 years 4 months ago #631060 by Xerakon
Ah, that makes sense.

So looking on Amazon,

Here is the Tamron 18-200:  www.amazon.com/Tamron-18-200mm-3-5-6-3-N...igital/dp/B013HXY21E

And here is the Nikon 18-200:  www.amazon.com/Nikon-18-200mm-3-5-5-6G-T...Format/dp/B002JCSV8A

What makes up essentially a $450 price difference?

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3 years 4 months ago #631070 by garyrhook
You asked about the 18-400, not the 18-200.

I can't recommend the 18-200, as I don't know anything about it. Yes, less expensive. But maybe for a reason. In which case I'd recommend renting it first to see what you think Maybe, for starting out, it's a fine choice.

I concluded your budget was in the $700 range. You can get the NIkon used, in like-new condition on Amazon, for about $400. That is, therefore an option.

If you search on this forum, you will find plenty of recommendations for the Nikon as a good walk-around lens. Not so much for the other two you mention, although they may be fine lenses.

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