Thread: What's your ideal minimum lens kit?

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  1. #1 What's your ideal minimum lens kit? 
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    So I'm just wondering what the minimal collection of lenses is that'd cover most shooting situations. I'm mostly considering primes at the moment.

    I wonder, for example, how often I'd use a 135mm. Seems pretty long.

    And is 20mm wide enough for most situations?

    Anyway, I thought I'd see what the prevailing thoughts are on a four- or five-piece kit.
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  2. #2  
    Senior Member Finner's Avatar
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    I have found in shooting most naratives a set of primes:

    20-25(some where in that range), 35, 50, 85, 135

    A set like that will work in most situations. Sometimes you may need wider (in a car for example) or tighter for other situations but you can usually plan for those days ahead of time. Also you may be suprisied how often the 135 will get you just the shot you need.
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  3. #3  
    I'll quote Mark Lyon, a director who is a friend of mine,

    "Choice of primes is a bit project-dependent, especially on the long
    end of the range. Here's the order I'm getting bid for an upcoming
    commercial project where I'd like a pretty good range:

    Option A:
    Zeiss standard T2.1 primes: 16mm, 24mm, 32mm, 50mm, 85mm, 100mm, 135mm
    Zeiss 8mm (8R) or 12mm

    Option B:
    Cooke 15-40 T2 zoom with zoom control and mattebox
    Cooke S4 12mm, 50mm, 75mm, 100mm

    But I would think that a 16 (wide), 32 (normal), and 85 or 100 (long)
    would handle a lot of situations. You could always augment with
    rentals when needed. I use my 50mm on Super16 all the time, so I'd
    really like to have an 85 or 100 for 35mm format close-ups."
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  4. #4  
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    I'm starting with Nikons to play with.

    I have a 24, 35, 50 and 85. I'll start with that for now and rent when things get more specific. However, this is enough to do just about anything within reason.
    I know how to do it. You just wouldn't know it from the way I do it.
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  5. #5  
    Digital FX Greg M's Avatar
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    I would consider a 16-24-32-50-85 and 135 as a basic set.
    Then would add a 14mm and 100mm and finally a 8mm or 10mm.

    Additionally a zoom is useful for most shoots.
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  6. #6  
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    I had already asked before and Stephen gave me this helpful tip from his own experience and preferences:

    With 3 lenses I would take 24,35 & 85 & with 5 lenses 18, 24, 35, 50 & 85

    http://www.cinematography.com/forum2...dpost&p=131845
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  7. #7  
    Digital FX Greg M's Avatar
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    The Red 18-85 should be considered a must have at under 10k. If you didnt order during original pre-order, dont forget to add it on Monday.

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  8. #8  
    While not my ideal kit, it's the best I can hope for under initial purchase constraints:

    Nikkor: 16mm f2.8, 24mm f2, 35mm f2, 50mm f1.2, 105mm, ~135mm

    I own a few now, but the 16mm and 100+mm units are on my shopping list. I also have a 50-300mm Nikkor zoom. Nice lens, but will be incredibly hard to pull a focus with. It's a PITA on the D2Xs even mounted on a tripod.

    I will probably reserve both the RED zoom and the RED 300mm come monday, but I don't know if I'll bite when the time comes. I'd rather see a nice set of primes from RED in a good price range that I can eventually buy to replace my Nikkor "starter set".
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Mark B.'s Avatar
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    I might do the same, order the lens reservation and then chicken out come purchase time.
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  10. #10  
    Senior Member Stephen Williams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emanuel View Post
    I had already asked before and Stephen gave me this helpful tip from his own experience and preferences:

    With 3 lenses I would take 24,35 & 85 & with 5 lenses 18, 24, 35, 50 & 85

    http://www.cinematography.com/forum2...dpost&p=131845
    Hi Emanuel,

    2 lenses would be 24 & 85

    1 lens only 24

    Stephen
    Epic Dragon owner, the first upgraded camera in Switzerland :D
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