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Thread: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

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    24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    I'm going to Spain and France in June and I will spend a week and a half in the mountains shooting landscapes. Since I make prints up to 20x30" and I have only 24-70/2.8 and 135/2 I've decided to get the sharpest wide-angle lens - recently presented 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5. I just don't know which one is sharper.

    I understand that almost nobody tried 24/1.4 but any thoughts are welcome.

    PS. I'm taking my LF gear too but that's only for architecture this time.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    If it's purely landscape shooting then you may prefer the available tilt/shift options with the pc-e. Shift makes panos very simple.

    Feedback on the new 24/1.4 are that it is very sharp, especially when stopped down from f/2 onwards. Ideal for candids and general shallow dof shooting. Take a look at the nikongear.com forum and bjorn rorslett's testing there if you want to see some objective analysis of the lens. Most of the coverage I've seen from moose petersen etc have been very positive although far from objective.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Alex Excellent question . The new 24 1.4 was designed for reportage and situations that benefit from a wide aperture . Generally the faster lenses are disappointing for use in landscape work were corner sharpness is critical.

    You might also consider the Zeiss Zf.2 lenses especially the 21/2.8 . You can see the tests at Diglloyd s website. He does a lot of mountain landscape work so his examples should be relevant to your requirements.

    I am sure the 24 1.4 will be a best in class lens but its designed for speed. I see this same issue with the Leica wide angles were the summiluxes get slammed for edge sharpness and distortion .

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Alex: Here's a couple of shots with the PC-E 24 (handheld). It's a great lens; but kind of a "beast". I haven't seen the 24mm f/1.4. Unseen, I'm going to say it would be a better all-around lens for your trip.

    1. D3; PC-E 24mm f/3.5; 1/100 @ f/16; ISO 250


    2. D3; PC-E 24mm f/3.5; 1/100 @ f/16; ISO 320

    3. D3; PC-E 24mm f/3.5; 1/100 @ f/16; ISO 1600

    http://mdriscoll.zenfolio.com

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    if it is about the sharpest 24mm the 14-24 might also be an alternative.
    I really like the 24PCE, and I think the tilt/shift gives you some additional options.
    It is sharp and has a nice bokeh and you can get close distance.
    I havent used the 24/1.4 Nikon but the 24/1.4 Leica and would say it gives you some more creative room if you like DOF shooting.
    And it is AF if you also like shooting action.
    My guess is that all 3 would be plenty sharp and it would be more about T/S vs speed and AF.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Thank you for your answers.

    I was considering 14-24 but filters are necessary for landscapes (most of the time). I may buy it later when I get the 24.

    Autofocus is a nice option in low light. I've found the automatic focusing does better job than me in difficult weather conditions.

    ok, I still have time till mid-May so hopefully there'll be 24/1.4 tests available and|or the lens will be available in stores.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Matt, beautiful photos! Make me wish it's June already

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexLF View Post
    Thank you for your answers.

    I was considering 14-24 but filters are necessary for landscapes (most of the time). I may buy it later when I get the 24.

    Autofocus is a nice option in low light. I've found the automatic focusing does better job than me in difficult weather conditions.

    ok, I still have time till mid-May so hopefully there'll be 24/1.4 tests available and|or the lens will be available in stores.
    Alex

    Lee Filters in the U.K. is now offering a filter system for the Nikon 14-24. If your only concern is filters, this should solve your problem

    Woody

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    IIf you are looking for the best wide lens then I'd agree with the 14-24 choice. Absolutely phenomenal lens and my favorite. If sharpness is your goal combined with AF then this should definitely be at the top of your list.

    The Lee filter holder looks interesting although remember also that you can also use grads even without the holder if you do it by hand, although tricky at really wide apertures to keep your fingers out of the frame. Not an option for polarizers at this time though.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    +1 for the 14-24mm f/2.8. It's a phenomenal lens. The 14-24, the 24-70, and the 70-200 f/2.8's make the perfect all-around Nikon kit. My constant worry is the unprotected bulging front lens.

    Cheers, Matt
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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Truth is that it's good to be concerned about the front element of the 14-24. I did damage my lens a while back when catching it in a doorway on a very cold day, breaking the lens hood and marking the front element coating in one spot in the process (shrapnel). The good news was that Nikon repaired the lens, replaced the hood, front element and the helicoid - for $260. Bad, but nothing like as bad as i had expected considering what they replaced.

    It is critical to keep the front element unmarked- the small spot I had did manifest itself as a propensity to create a flare spot in front sun-light.

    Since having the lens fixed iike new, I've not had any problems and take a lot more care with where the lens is when carrying it. On any other day I don't think the hood would have shattered had it not been a very cold (15f or so)

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    Truth is that it's good to be concerned about the front element of the 14-24. I did damage my lens a while back when catching it in a doorway on a very cold day, breaking the lens hood and marking the front element coating in one spot in the process (shrapnel). The good news was that Nikon repaired the lens, replaced the hood, front element and the helicoid - for $260. Bad, but nothing like as bad as i had expected considering what they replaced.

    It is critical to keep the front element unmarked- the small spot I had did manifest itself as a propensity to create a flare spot in front sun-light.

    Since having the lens fixed iike new, I've not had any problems and take a lot more care with where the lens is when carrying it. On any other day I don't think the hood would have shattered had it not been a very cold (15f or so)
    Graham: That's good to know. Pretty reasonable cost.

    Cheers, Matt

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Thank you all for replies. As to 14-24 I can't accept it as a landscape lens - very flare-prone and impossibility to use filters (even though I have Lee filters and 105m polirizer). So I'd go with 24/1.4 when it's available.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Alex,

    I have been using the 14-24mm, the PC-E24, the 24-70mm, ZF25 and ZF21 as well and did my own comparisons. The 14-24 is undoubtedly an excellent lens, distortions can be handled quite well in NX2, my PC-E24 sample showed some wave distortion and I found its mechanics a bit flimsy. Finally I sold all Nikon glass and sticked to those mentioned ZF lenses. The ZF25 shines because of its very close focus range and is sharp into the D3x's corners from f5.6 on while the ZF21 beats all those other lenses from open aperture onwards. Just have a look at Diglloyd's comprehensive ZF lens reviews. I don't know, if size and weight are issues for you. If so, the ZF25 is the most compact.

    Regards,
    Udo

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Udo, thank you for the info about Zeiss. I completely forgot about it. Hm... I will definitely look on those lenses.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    I have to concur with Udo,
    Even though I no longer have my Nikon gear, traded up to a used H3D39, The 24mm PC-E was a good lens until I tried the Zeiss, This is the way to go. The D3X is so demanding that you have to use the best glass possible. I had all 3 Pc-E lenses from Nikon, and they all worked great on my D700, but.... When I upgraded to the D3x, I found that only the 85mm PC-E really shined, where the 45mm was fair and the 24mm was better then the 45mm but know where near zeiss.

    One last thing, don't forget your tripod and cable release and use MLU

    If I ever decide to go back to a 35mm DSLR I will only buy the zeiss lenses. I am totally sold on them.

    Steven
    Steven Kornreich
    www.kuau.com

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    I never found anything wrong with the 24 PCE on the d3x - however I have never tried the Zeiss.
    Regarding the Nikon 24/1.4 and 14-24 there is still one big thin IMO: AF!
    Depends a lot on what you shoot, but I like to have in as many lenses as possible (for my dslr-system)

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Well, just take a look at the nikongear.com forum and bjorn rorslett's testing there if you want to see some objective analysis of the lens.

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    Re: 24/1.4 or PC-E 24/3.5 for landscapes on D3x?

    Why not consider the 16-35 VR? This will solve your filter issue with the 14-24. The 16-35mm is quite stellar.

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