Conflicted as to what to do

Jun 21, 2005
Bayside, NY
When college starts, I'm going to join the student newspaper as a photographer. I was wondering, whether to sell off my 17-55 and get a 28-70.

When I first got my 17-55, I got it for the 17mm length, but I realize I really don't need it, as I find myself on the 55mm length more than 60% of the time. I really find myself wishing for the extra focal length and I'm sure shooting for the paper in college will make me wish even more.

However, I'm also going to get a 85 1.4 (very soon). Is having a 28-70 and 85 a good idea? I'm really not sure what to do yet, 17-55 vs the 28-70. I wish I could just have both but of course I can't.

Any opinions regarding this matter would be appreciated!
May 23, 2005
no, do not buy the 28-70
It is not a PJ lens, it is a portrait lens, on a crop camera it is not useful for photographing anythign of size up close.

If you are too close to the Dean shaking hands with the PResident of PEpsico, you end up getting a lovely portrait of the Dean only.

Wit theh 17-55 you can use the extra range to get them both in the shot.

Get a 50mm prime and run around with only that on your camera for a month. You will find you want wider I think, and anyway it;s a nice cheap low light lens to have for packing light, but you will soon fine you need wider when you want to capture larger scenes.

Especially if you are going to get a 85/1.4 anyway.
Dude, you need to relax, what on earth makes you think you needed a 28-70 anyway.

Anyway, you might want some longer glass (70-200) before you start switching around the shorter glass.

David H. Lewis

Keep 17-55

I would definitely keep the 17-55. I have a degree in photojournalism and worked in the field for three years, but that was in the early 80s. Just the same, I remember what worked for me. You really need to be able to cover the spectrum lenswise, but you are going to find yourself in many situations where you are glad you've got a wide lens. A very handy use for a wide lens for a photojournalistic application, for instance, is when you're sent to shoot some event, and you want to capture the overall tone of the setting, but you want to have a center of interest in your photo, as well. W/A is great for this because you can get close to one thing and have it dominate your photo, but still see the landscape. Also, that wide-angle perspective adds a drama of its own. I shot this one with the 17-55 at 17. Couldn't have done it with a longer lens.

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Jan 25, 2005

It's hard to advise against the 28-70 as it is one very fine piece of glass. I'd sure like to have one. If I were in your shoes though, I think that I'd get the 85 1.4 first and see how that combo works for your applications. You can always sell the 17-55 and get the 28-70 later.

Good luck which ever way you go.
Mar 18, 2005
Ellamore, WV
Real Name
Dave Watts
As I believe Bjorn brought to our attention in a similar post, the 17-55 IS a 28-70 on our digital cameras.


Do you not see a need for something even slightly telephoto? A Nikon 28-200G is a very good, compact lens that would give you some reach.
Feb 14, 2005
Huntsville, AL
Most newspaper photogs I know like the faster lenses. Not only can you shoot in lower light, you can see what you are photographing so much better. Fast lenses are easier on the eyes after a day of shooting. You can probably do well with whatever equipment you choose. Good luck.


FWIW, Chong, I agree with Twig's comment: the 50mm f1.8 is a great, inexpensive, walkaround lens, but you'll find it too narrow for most things you'd want to do. And 85mm would even be more challenge to capture what you want (unless you're 15 yards away).

I'd go with everyone else recommendation: keep the 17-70.


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