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I’ve lost control. I have both holy trinities of lenses ... f/2.8 and f/4 ... 

My current kit includes: 12-24 f/4 G, 24-105 f/4 G, 16-35 f/2.8 GM, 24-70 f/2.8 GM, 70-200 f/2.8 GM, Sony 90 f/2.8 G, Sony Zeiss 35mm f/2.8, Sigma 100-400, Sigma 85mm. As you can see ... lens overload.

I love ultra-wide, it comes in extremely handy for city life, hence the 12-24mm - I have recently started using the Haida Rear ND filters with it. I have the Nisi 100mm filter system, that I use on all my lenses. I kept the 16-35mm so I could still use the Nisi kit at a fairly wide FOV at 16mm. My way of thinking was that I would keep the 12-24mm until Sony or Sigma release a 12mm lens with an f/2.8 or lower aperture that I could use for night and my astro dabblings. 

But now my dilemmas are the following:
1- Selling off the 12-24 and 16-35 and purchasing the 12-24 f/2.8GM (potential downside of this is I'll be limited to rear ND filters only and no GNDs)
2- Selling off the 24-70 and 70-200 and keeping the 24-105 f/4G  (potential downside is having 24mm be the widest angle I could use my GNDs)

I shoot a lot of cityscape night photography - hence the f/2.8 explosion - I also shoot a lot of landscape. But I'm wondering if I could manage fine with f/4 for both? For my photo treks the f/4s would give me a lighter kit.

I also like to dabble in portraiture and f/2.8 bokeh bla bla bla ... but I also figure i could use my primes for that.

Please help unravel this ball of exhaustive confusion. I want to reduce my lens kit - by a lot. Any of your sage advice/wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

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I am impressed by the number of lenses you own ! But quite frankly, I did onwn also several of your lenses (12-24 G, 16-35 GM, 24-70 GM, 90 G and 100-400 GM) until my back said : stop it ! I sold them all back.

But it was not only a question of weight : even if I knew I was wrong, I could not prevent me from having a large set of lenses/ zooms and buy new ones. It did not at all make me a better photographer. I was not taking enough time to learn how to get the best of each lens.

For a landscape use, I was not very happy with the 12-24 G and more specifically at 24mm. Same for the 24-70 GM. And they seem today somewhat outdated. I write "somewhat" because the quality of a lens is far less important than the talent of the photographer.

I tried once the Sony Zeiss 35 but was not totally convinced. The very best 35mm is probably the sigma 35 f1.2, but much to big and heavy for me.

Today  I have four lenses in my bag for landscape (and general purpose): Sony 24 GM f1.4, Sony 35 F1.8, Voigtlander 50 f2, and surprisingly the Tamron 70 180 f2.8 : quite a light package, good IQ with the demanding A7RIV, and quite sufficient in most cases.

Of course, If you like very wide angles, the new 12-24 GM is certainly a must and I would agree with your option 1.

As far as portrait is concerned, I have the 135 GM (not in my bag) which is an absolute gem. But if you already own the 90 G Macro and the Sigma 85, they are excellent and you really do not need more ! I would even sell one of the two.

As far as the 24-105 is concerned, it is such an easy walkaround zoom which covers such a large spectrum. May be F4 is not fast enough for your night cityscape pictures although you probably can compensate with low speed ? I then would also agree with your option 2.

But of course, this is just my opinion...



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  • 1 month later...

I too have been down this road and recently got rid of my 12-24 f4, 24-70 GM and 70-200GM.  My kit today includes the 12-24 f2.8, 24-105 and the 100-400GM and the 200-600.  The last lens I only take with me when wildlife is the primary objective.  I have had primes in the past but find the quality of today's zooms quite good and the composition flexibility they offer makes them an obvious choice for me

I think my favorite lens is the 100-400GM.  Much of my shooting is landscape and while I love ultra wide when foreground elimination is needed, I love the subject isolation long lenses offer.

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