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  1. #1
    Rudeofus's Avatar
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    Telephoto madness?

    I have a 35mm and an MF camera and use the MF rig mostly for landscape type shots. Right now I only have the standard 110mm lens so obviously I should be looking at some wide angle lens. But whenever I start looking for used wide angle lenses I find myself drifting off into the longer focal lengths section For some reason I keep looking at 210mm and 250 and 350mm lenses when I personally have absolutely no application for long focal lengths on MF (my kids who should eventually become part of my landscape shots are way too fast).

    Since I also see this happening to other folks (people buying long glass, then not using it and eventually selling it at a loss) I wonder what drives me (and others) towards telephoto lenses. Is there something unconsciously messing with my/our thoughts?

  2. #2
    IloveTLRs's Avatar
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    Since I spend most of my time with a 50mm, telephotos are very nice. I only have one, a 70-150/4 in OM mount. It's pretty small and light, so I'm happy with it.
    Personally I don't like walking around with a long lens on because I don't want to stand out, and I don't want to look like one of the many obvious photographers with their characteristic massive zooms & dSLRs.

    Also bright telephoto lenses are expensive over here
    Those who know, shoot film

  3. #3
    Rob Skeoch's Avatar
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    I think many of us expect to use the gear, but then we don't have as much time to spend on it as we hoped and the gear sits unused. If we all shot as much as we had planned to, we would wear out some of this gear, instead it sits in mint shape.

    I have a 300mm lens for my Pentax 645, it's a great lens, I love using it, but I hardly use it.

    -Rob
    Rob Skeoch
    This is my blog http://thepicturedesk.blogspot.com/
    This my website for photo supplies...
    www.bigcameraworkshops.com
    This is my website for Rangfinder gear
    www.rangefinderstore.com

  4. #4

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    I usually go from wide angle to short telephoto. I have a 400mm for my Canon FD bodies but I hardly use it.

    Jeff

  5. #5
    eddym's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rudeofus View Post
    Since I also see this happening to other folks (people buying long glass, then not using it and eventually selling it at a loss) I wonder what drives me (and others) towards telephoto lenses. Is there something unconsciously messing with my/our thoughts?
    Very simple: a big long lens is sexy. It's a phallic symbol. I can remember drooling over them, too. The last one I had was a 300mm Nikon, and after making maybe a dozen shots with it over several years, I finally came to my senses and donated it to a young photography student. She loves it.
    Eddy McDonald
    www.fotoartes.com
    Eschew defenestration!

  6. #6
    RobertV's Avatar
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    Maybe I have to sell my 400mm EOS lens........

  7. #7

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    Personally, in terms of "landscape" shooting, I've evolved over the last 30 years from mostly wide angle to now mostly telephoto shooting.
    I find tighter framing and selective focus helps create more compelling photos.
    Also, the longer glass helps in many situations where the terrain restricts your ability to move about.
    I shoot a 50mm and a 180mm on my RB now and I'm watching for an affordable 250 before my summer travel season starts.

  8. #8
    mhcfires's Avatar
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    Long fast lenses are great for shooting birds and other wildlife. I would love to have a 600mm VR lens, but the >$10k price tag brings me back to my senses. I can have just as much fun with a 50mm/1.1 Nokton on my Leica as with a big lens on my Nikon, maybe more. I don't expect to be getting out anytime soon to go bird shooting, but I will have a blast at the local weekly classic car shows with the Leica. If I really want to turn heads, I will take my 2x3 Graflex SLR or my 4x5 Speed. "Wow! They still make film for those old things?"
    Michael Cienfuegos


    If you don't want to stand behind our troops, please feel free to stand in front of them.

  9. #9
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Ninety percent to 95% of my work is with "normal" focal lengths. I tend to photograph what I see, so a lens that approximates that is what I tend to use. Just a personal vision sort of thing. I have borrowed a 24" lens for the 8x10, but have only used it a couple times. A convertable lens I have will give me 28", but at infinity it maxes out my rails -- took one image so far with that. On the wide side I have a 159mm and a 210mm -- the 210 sees more use. It is nice having the range "just in case", but if I had only the 300mm, I could still find enough worthwhile images for the rest of my life.

    Several years ago I bought a 600mm (Apo-Rodenstock CL) lens that has a too large of a diameter for my lens board -- I need to sell the thing to someone with a bigger format than my 8x10. Why did I buy it -- wish I knew...don't think I will get my $400 back out of it. Pretty to look at, though.
    At least with LF landscape, a bad day of photography can still be a good day of exercise.

  10. #10

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    I don't shoot surfing, African animals in the landscape, tight Hollywood headshots, etc., so I have no need for anything longer than what would be an 85mm equivalent in 35mm format. I also never really go shorter than 24mm equivalent. I'm a simple man with simple needs... and thankfully, since I really don't want to have to shell out $12K Nikon for super telephoto ever in my life.

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