Z 20mm When You Have Z 14-30mm?

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Curious if anyone here has both, or better yet, has replaced the 14-30mm with the 20mm?

I am looking to add a fast wide prime and the 20mm is tugging at my wallet. I also have the 14-30mm but am thinking that the 20mm would be better for low-light due to it being a faster lens. My mind then began to wonder if perhaps the 20mm could possibly replace my 14-30mm, so I thought that I would reach out to you guys. Am I totally crazy to even be thinking about this?

Would I miss the 14-20mm range? Perhaps at times. Would having both be somewhat redundant? Not sure, considering the speed of the 20mm and the usefulness of the wider aperture for low-light and/or astro.

I also considered the Laowa 15mm, but feel that I wouldn't get as much use out of it like I would the 20mm (or 14-30mm, for that matter).

No, money isn't boring a hole in my pocket, but I did just sell my Fuji X100V so I have some cash to play with. I normally search the used boards, but the 20mm is a bit too new to see many being moved.

Anyone with/had both? Let me hear from you! TIA
 

NCV

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I think the Cameralabs verdict is worth looking at.

Personally I think the zoom is far more flexible and with the usable high ISO on the Z series you might be better upping the ISO in low light.

I now use fixed FL for special stuff like shift lenses and fisheye. Modern zooms are very good nowadays.
 
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I guess it depends to some degree what you plan to shoot with those lenses. Also, wides are not often shot wide open (for landscapes) so an f/4 WA zoom should be just fine. I've used a 16-35 f/4 on my D850 as my only lens while traveling. Never cried out for more light, and the Z line is equally good in the dark.
 
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John Van Atta
I've been thinking about it too. But I haven't seen a comparison that shows the prime to be any *better* than the zoom, just faster. Which means I would need to have a solid reason for the fast aperture. Stars is kind of a binary thing, there's just going to be no comparison between the two if that's the goal--I found f4 to be unworkably slow at night, and the 14-30 wants to be at f5.6 at 20mm, too.
 
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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #6
You all made excellent points. I won't be selling my 14-30mm, but ... I did get a nice deal on a used mint 20mm f/1.8G lens, so I went for it. I figured that the lens won't take up a lot of room in my bag and will give me another wide option (just not ultra wide).
 
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Sounds like you've made your decision, but here's my 2c for what it's worth ... I think the 20 only makes sense if one of the following is important for you:

- Wide field astro
- Interior architecture in dark places (but a tripod will do that too)
- Sunstars (the 14-30 doesn't really do nice sunstars)

There would be other primes I'd go for first (the 35 being the obvious one for me).
 
Joined
Nov 24, 2019
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I tried the 14-30 but opted for the 20mm prime with no regrets. You can get very close with this lens and have very shallow DOF for such a wide focal length. I think the 20 compliments the other f/1.8 primes nicely.

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Joined
Sep 13, 2008
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Viera, FL
I have the 14-30 but am on the fence about the 20 f/1.8. I really like the 14-30 and thought for dark sky/astr/night shots maybe I’ll need the 20. A couple weeks ago I went to a astro/Milky Way workshop and the 14-30 did really well. If I was doing that professionally, I’d look at the prime but for the few times I’ll be shooting these subjects, I’m resolved that the 14-30 is quite capable of whatever I throw at it. But the temptation will always be there.......
 
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Potomac Falls, VA
Sounds like you've made your decision, but here's my 2c for what it's worth ... I think the 20 only makes sense if one of the following is important for you:

- Wide field astro
- Interior architecture in dark places (but a tripod will do that too)
- Sunstars (the 14-30 doesn't really do nice sunstars)

There would be other primes I'd go for first (the 35 being the obvious one for me).
I think the 14-30 makes pretty good sun stars!
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