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Thread started 26 Jan 2011 (Wednesday) 18:42
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Upcoming Hawaii trip - lens suggestions?

154 posts
Joined Feb 2008
Location: Dayton, OH
Jan 26, 2011 18:42 |  #1

I need a lens recommendation for an upcoming family trip to Hawaii (Oahu). I have been there before and have an idea what type of stuff I will be shooting but am torn on what lens will be best. I imagine I'll be doing a lot of landscape photography but I also want something good for family photos during activities. I'll be visiting Pearl Harbor, Diamond Head, etc and will also be doing lots of other tourist stuff.

Regarding my gear, I'm starting from scratch. I had to sell all my gear a while back so I'll be getting new gear again. I just ordered a new 7D but haven't chosen a lens yet. I will be meeting with someone local to look at their 24-105L and am leaning towards just taking that with me but I am open to suggestions. Would I be better off getting a 17-40?

Due to luggage restrictions I would really prefer to just take one lens with me but I realize that may not be practical. Also, I REALLY don't want to be changing lenses with all of the sand blowing around so what would you recommend?

Budget is somewhat of an issue but nothing too far out there.

Senior Member
841 posts
Joined Jun 2007
Location: San Francisco
Jan 26, 2011 18:49 |  #2

You can always rent something too. You will probably want the 17-55 f/2.8 or the 24-105 L. (external link)

Senior Member
260 posts
Joined May 2008
Location: Hermitage, TN
Jan 26, 2011 18:56 |  #3

I am heading to Hawaii next month... I have been adding to my gear to be "ready".. I added a 24-105L to my kit and a 70-300. I will take the 50 1.4 for "low light" and hope that those three will get me through. When are you going?

40D/BG-E2N 5D/BG-E44
10-22, 24-105 L, 50 1.4
28-135 IS, 70-300 f/4-5.6 IS
Sigma 70mm EX DG Macro
Bogen 3211/488RC2 , Fastpack 350

154 posts
Joined Feb 2008
Location: Dayton, OH
Jan 26, 2011 19:11 |  #4

markol wrote in post #11720848 (external link)
You can always rent something too. You will probably want the 17-55 f/2.8 or the 24-105 L.

I considered renting something but I'll be there for 10 days in addition to all of the travel time. By the time it is said and done I would need to rent something for at least 2 weeks. For that I figure I might as well just buy whatever is more useful to me.

Whitley wrote in post #11720909 (external link)
I am heading to Hawaii next month... I have been adding to my gear to be "ready".. I added a 24-105L to my kit and a 70-300. I will take the 50 1.4 for "low light" and hope that those three will get me through. When are you going?

I have taken numerous vacations where I take 3, 4, 5 lenses with me and I honestly get tired of hauling it all around and switching back and forth. Worst case scenario I want 2 lenses to take with me and then I will switch out depending on what I'm doing that day

I'm going mid-March and the family is very excited. As mentioned, I have been once before about 10 years ago but my family has never been.

1,798 posts
Likes: 37
Joined May 2007
Jan 26, 2011 19:24 |  #5

For 7D, if I can take only one lens, it will be 17-55IS. FL range aside, 17-55IS will give you better IQ than both 17-40L and 24-105L. 1 stop of light and DOF control. It is also more handheldable.

With FL in to consideration, I still see no point of having 17-40L here. If you like longer range, 24-105L make sense.

5Di, 5Diii, 28, 50, 85, 16-35II, 24-105, 70-200F2.8 IS

"Not brigth enough"
10,463 posts
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Joined Jul 2010
Location: ɹǝpun uʍop
Jan 26, 2011 19:31 |  #6

One lens? for me on a 7D it would be the 15-85. Sure, it may not be the best low light lens, but it really does have great holiday happy snap focal range.

Never make the same mistake twice, there are so many new ones, try a different one each day
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Mostly Lurking
18 posts
Joined May 2010
Location: Yulee, FL
Jan 26, 2011 19:37 as a reply to  @ L.J.G.'s post |  #7

I was there last October for my honeymoon and took my 7D with 24-105 and canon 10-22. I would probably rent a 17-55 next time instead of taking my 10-22. I really didn't find any need for a telephoto. The only reason I would take a telephoto would be for whale season or if you are going to go to the north shore and watch the surfers.

Have fun!

Junior Member
23 posts
Joined Mar 2007
Location: Redmond, Wa
Jan 26, 2011 19:37 |  #8

Whatever lens you decide to take make sure you pack a circular polarizer. The blue water, and bright foliage really pop when you can dial out the sun glare.

Canon 1D Classic, Canon 20D, BG-E2N Battery Grip, 17-40 F4L, EF 50 F1.8, Sigma 70-200 F2.8 EX DG MACRO HSM, 430 EX II Speedlight, Giottos MTL9271B tripod legs, Manfrotto 498RC2, Lowepro Pro Runner 450AW

1,286 posts
Gallery: 3 photos
Likes: 28
Joined Aug 2010
Jan 26, 2011 19:38 |  #9

I'd simply bring a wider zoom and a long zoom, whatever you have available. I went to Maui about a year ago with a Tamron 28-75 and a Canon 70-200 and was perfectly satisfied. I wouldn't worry about primes because the main attraction is the outdoors, and the weather is so nice that low light really isn't an issue.

Gear | Flickr (external link)

Scott ­ M
3,392 posts
Gallery: 109 photos
Likes: 498
Joined May 2008
Location: Michigan / South Carolina
Jan 26, 2011 20:19 |  #10

When we were in Hawaii (Big Island & Kauai) last winter, I took my 17-55 f/2.8, 70-200 f/4 IS and 10-22. I used the 17-55 for the vast majority of my shots. The 10-22 was used only in Volcanoes National Park, and the 70-200 was used on two whale watching excursions and for a few landscape shots.

As suggested above, whatever you decide, pack a circular polarizing filter.

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KVN ­ Photo
1,940 posts
Joined Jun 2010
Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
Jan 26, 2011 21:59 |  #11

It seems 17-40 or 17-55 is the best option for usual tourist stuff.
24-105 could be nice too, as long as you have UWA lens to accompany it.

X-Pro1 + 18-55 f/2.8-4 OIS + 55-200 f/3.8-4.5 OIS
TS-E 24 f/3.5L II + XF 35 f/1.4 + XF 56 f/1.2
Sony RX100 II + G12
Travel the world!

Senior Member
384 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Aug 2010
Location: O'ahu, Hawaii
Jan 26, 2011 22:31 |  #12

The 17-55 or 15-85 would be good (I'd probably choose focal range over speed in this case), but you might want to consider something weather sealed (since your 7D is). I'd much rather have the 24-105 over the 17-40. If you need wider then perhaps you could just take a panorama... All this talk about the 24-105 is making me regret selling mine...

-Matt G
Instagram: @garmeleon
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Cream of the Crop
44,648 posts
Gallery: 1 photo
Likes: 155
Joined Dec 2010
Jan 26, 2011 23:28 as a reply to  @ coirchlid's post |  #13

I spend at least 1/3 of the year on Oahu. It depends on what I'm doing, but the lenses I use ordered from used most to least are 70-200 2.8, 15-85 3.5, 85 1.2 and 100 2.8.

DL ­ Photo
Senior Member
577 posts
Joined Apr 2010
Location: Richmond, BC, Canada
Jan 26, 2011 23:59 |  #14

I went to Cancun a month ago. Took my 17-55. I definitely needed the 17 for landscape shots (I am sure that Hawaii will be no different).
On a crop, I'd say you'll miss the lower end if you go with the 24-105. Didn't really miss not having longer than the 55.
Since I did not have my tripod, the 2.8 came in handy for dawn and dusk shots (for that reason, I'd recommend the 17-55 over the 15-85).

OMD-10 (absolutely love this little devil)

48 posts
Joined Jan 2011
Jan 27, 2011 00:36 |  #15

I live here and I use the 17-50 Tamron as my main lens, but if you want surf or beach shots a 70-200 will serve you well. Keep off the highway at rush hour and have a good time! If you want to rent lenses lighthaus camera is somewhat close to Waikiki and rentals run $10-$30 a day.

CLP 7D gripped, Tamron 17-50f/2.8, Canon 28-105f/3.5-4.5 mk1, Canon 50 f/1.4, Canon 70-200L f/4, 430EXII, Litepanel Micropro

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Upcoming Hawaii trip - lens suggestions?
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