Go Wide Or Long: Focal Length Recommendations


I am making the transition from APS-C to full frame with the purchase of my A7RIII and the 24-105. I continue to have my A6000 body, 10-18mm and 18-135. But while I have the APS-C body and lenses I would like to complete the transition to FF. Thus my question is to whether I should add a telephoto or a wide angle zoom. I realize the textbook answer is to take a look at your current photos and its hard to come to any firm conclusion.

So I am asking for your input…which is more valuable to you: your wide angle zoom or your telephoto zoom?

I consider 24mm to be pretty wide angle and you already have that. Therefore I would go with the telephoto zoom.

Several people have told me that their favorite lens is the 70-200. It depends on the photographer but I prefer the 24-70 lens and I shoot mostly in the 24-50 range. I suppose that if you wanted wider than 24 you could stitch together images from either side. Or just step back.

Pat, it would also be helpful if you could describe what type of nature photography you are interested in and most likely to use the lenses for. The focal length needs for landscapes are very different than birds or wildlife.

For example, I primarily do landscape and macro photography. I own a full frame Canon 5D MkIV body and 4 lenses, Canon 16-35mm f4, Canon 24-70 ,Canon 70-200mm f4, and Canon 100 mm Macro. For certain types of grand landscapes having something as wide as 16mm can be important. And I don’t often need more than 200mm in my landscape work. I chose f4 lenses over the f2.8 versions because they are less heavy and better for hiking. And having an f2.8 lens is not often needed for landscapes, unless you do night photography.

I used to do bird and wildlife photography in the past, and for that it’s all about focal length. I used to own a Canon 100-400mm f5.6 and a 500mm f4 lens,

If you are not sure about what type of photography you want to do, then a mid-range zoom of 24 to 70mm, and perhaps a 70-300mm or a 70-200mm is a good combo. If you are interested in birds, you can never have enough focal length and 400mm is almost a minimum.


I only do landscapes and almost never any wildlife. I’m really leaning towards adding a moderate (70-200) over a wider than 24mm lens.

If you already have the 24 to 105mm, I would definitely add a 70-200mm or 70-300mm next. As I said a mid-range zoom like 24-105mm, and a short telephoto like the 70-200mm is a good combo for landscape. You can always add a 16-35mm later, if you consistently find 24mm is not wide enough. Also remember you can always step forward or backward to change compositions too.

For some reason the 70-200 lenses are often some of the sharpest of the zoom lenses. You should get a noticeable improvement in image quality over the 24-105 you now have.

Actually In the Sony world, the 24-105 is pretty highly regarded and the 70-200F4 is considered good but not great…but fine at landscape apertures.