February 8, 2016 at 1:34PM


Not Sure About Primes or Zooms

Hey guys (or gals!). I am a wildlife filmmaker and have made my living shooting wildlife documentaries. I'm currently shooting on a Sony A7SII, a Sony A7RII, and a Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera with Canon glass and Metabones adapters. My current lineup of lenses are the 16-35mm 2.8L MKII, the 24-70mm 2.8L MKII, the 70-200mm 2.8L MKII, the 100-400mm 4.5-5.6L MKII (with the newer 1.4X extender), and the 100mm 2.8L Macro. I also have a Rokinon 14mm 2.8 and a Rokinon 24mm 1.4 for star timelapses.

I absolutely love my setup and I also have Metabones Speed Boosters for when I need to get wider shots on my BMPCC or when I want to use APS-C crop mode or slow motion on the Sony cameras. This also helps add stops of light too!

Here's where I'm kinda stuck though. I want to get more into creating corporate commercials and promotional videos for businesses in my area during the slower parts of the year and am also interested in making little short films and such. Since most of my knowledge is in outdoor or wildlife filmmaking, I am pretty new to this genre of filming. I also want to do photography for people as well. My question is this: Is my glass good enough for this type of filmmaking and for photography, or is it pretty necessary that I step into primes? I love the flexibility and the simplicity of my system, and I am in no way going to sell my lenses, but if primes really are that much better for this type of work, then I'm prepared to purchase three of the Sigma Art lenses. BUT, I just am unfamiliar with the true difference between primes and the L series zooms I have. So, please, enlighten me on whether a few primes are worth the money or not!


Canon L zooms are the envy of 90%-95% of the commercial videography world. When it comes to making feature films, there a reasons (some due to snobbery) where only a $30,000 Master Prime will do. But I've rarely ever seen "cinema glass" being used for commercial gigs. Whereas I see "L" glass there all the time, and more often than not, zoom "L" lenses.

If you know how to use it in the wild, using it indoors should be a cinch! Just don't forget that lighting package...

February 8, 2016 at 6:23PM


You have a great setup. Once you start doing corporate videos or short films you will probably realize that there are lenses you barely use and hence you'll end up selling a piece or two.

February 8, 2016 at 9:43PM


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