Lenses for trip to Hawaii

Joined
Oct 5, 2006
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Location
Bedford, MA
We just got a timeshare in Hawaii that is 11 months away. I know it's a long way off, but I'm already speculating about what lenses to take along. We will be going to Kauai for two weeks and staying in Princeville. This is where my wife and I honeymooned four years ago. The trip will be for our 5-year anniversary.

As for the lenses. I would like to only take three lenses. If I was going tomorrow I'd take my Sigma 10-20, Nikon 18-70, and Sigma 70-300. Well I'd love to take the 120-300 2.8, it would be too heavy to lug around. I'd also like some better glass.

The 10-20 has to go to get some of those great views, especially of the NaPali Coast. I'm certain that I'll buy the 70-300 VR. From all accounts it produces great images and is only about $450.

My biggest question is getting a lens to fit in between the 10-20 and the 70-300. I'll be selling my Nikon 18-70 and Sigma 70-300 to get a better lens, which I have narrowed down to three options: 17-55, 28-70 or 16-85.

17-55: I think this is probably the best lens for my prospective kit. It's pro caliber and I've seen some absolutely amazing photos taken with it. It would be a lens that I could definitely grow with. The 2.8 aperture would be ideal for sunrise and sunsets on Kauai. I could probably get one used in the $900 range.

28-70: Another true Nikon classic with 2.8 aperture. A bit heavier than the 17-55 and there would be a gap between 20 and 28 mm. A little pricer used - a bit over $1000.

16-85: Although not pro quality glass I have heard some pretty good things about this lens. The VR would be a major bonus, but not having fast glass could hurt in some instances. Also, the bokeh isn't all that great at 5.6. However, this is the cheaper of the three lenses and covers the widest range.
Costs around $550.

If you were in my position, which would be the best of these three options?

10-20, 17-55 2.8 and 70-300 VR - after selling two lenses would be $1100

10-20, 28-70 2.8 and 70-300 VR - after selling two lenses would be $1200

10-20, 16-85 VR and 70-300 VR - after selling two lenses would be $750
 
Joined
Jan 26, 2005
Messages
1,011
Location
San Jose, CA
It's not on you list, but why not just get a 50/1.4 for the midrange? You need something fast in your travel kit for romantic candlelight dinners.
 
Joined
Oct 5, 2006
Messages
1,130
Location
Bedford, MA
I do have a 50 1.8, which could be used for lower light situations. I guess I could go with a single prime between the 10-20 and the 70-300, but I think I may get a bit frustrated, having not been brought up as a prime shooter. However, it would probably cause me to think a bit more about what I am shooting.
 
Joined
Oct 9, 2007
Messages
113
Location
Colorado
It depends on whether the purpose of the trip is photography or a family vacation.

I own about 15 Nikon lenses and several bodies including a D3. When I go to Hawaii on vacation I take a D300 and 16-85. I find the 16-85 to be perfect for vacations. The VR allows hand-held low-light photos, sharp-shots from boats, etc.

After the 16-85 I would recommend something longer like the 70-300.
 
S

ssjarz

Guest
Number 2 makes the most sense, you might consider taking a small mid size zoom like the 18-70mm DX. Also if you take a boat ride along the Nepali Coast, you might bring a small pocket camera because the boat rides tend to be rough and wet.
 

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