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  • Aug 22nd, 2012 3:12 pm
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[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2006
439 posts
65 upvotes
Mississauga

Japan Trip

Hey Guys,

I will be in Japan late Nov to early Dec this year...and can't wait to do some photography there! But since I never been there before, I was wondering if anyone have any recommendations in terms of what gear to bring and if there are any unwritten "rules" i should follow when photographing things there.

I currently have the 5dm2 and a 24-70 (yea, that's it lol). As much as I love the 24-70, I've been reading that due to the number of people in Japan and the limited space there, it's better to bring a wider lens...is that true? I was thinking of getting the 17-40 if that's the case, that should cover pics of architecture and landscapes there and the price is reasonable too. I might also get a cheap prime for doing some night time street photography like the nifty fifty.


Thanks!
13 replies
Deal Addict
Jul 13, 2009
2780 posts
574 upvotes
When travelling, simplify!

24mm is plenty wide, but if you enjoy landscapes, buildings etc then go wider!

Enjoy the trip and stay light.

The 50mm f1.8 is a no brainer, but you might find yourself using it more often. If you can, go for the 50mm f1.4. If you don't like it, just sell it after your trip. That's what I do for trips, I bought a 17-50 f2.8 (on Canon 7D) for my trip next month, selling it right after!
|Naruto| wrote:
Aug 20th, 2012 1:07 pm
Hey Guys,

I will be in Japan late Nov to early Dec this year...and can't wait to do some photography there! But since I never been there before, I was wondering if anyone have any recommendations in terms of what gear to bring and if there are any unwritten "rules" i should follow when photographing things there.

I currently have the 5dm2 and a 24-70 (yea, that's it lol). As much as I love the 24-70, I've been reading that due to the number of people in Japan and the limited space there, it's better to bring a wider lens...is that true? I was thinking of getting the 17-40 if that's the case, that should cover pics of architecture and landscapes there and the price is reasonable too. I might also get a cheap prime for doing some night time street photography like the nifty fifty.


Thanks!
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
10720 posts
4283 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Because it's soooo crowded there, I took a superzoom 18-200mm along with a number of other lenses for my D7000. The superzoom is nice not only for the wide angle but for the telephoto capabilities so that you can isolate subject matter.
135mm
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s3/v40/p628715163-4.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s11/v35/p461332928-4.jpg[/IMG]
200mm
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s3/v40/p199167846-4.jpg[/IMG]

Of course, the wider lenses are great as well -
18mm
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s3/v39/p657680212-4.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s1/v21/p80718927-4.jpg[/IMG]
14mm
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s3/v41/p944154941-4.jpg[/IMG]

And the 50mm as well
[IMG]http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/img/s3/v40/p928234793-4.jpg[/IMG]

Where are you going in Japan? Normally, I don't recommend to people to shop for new camera equipment there as the prices are much more expensive but if you are looking for used stuff at EXCELLENT prices for the condition, Japan does have a few gems in terms of used camera stores! I got a 9+ used 50mm f/1.4 AF-D lens for 15,000 YEN.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2006
7544 posts
1440 upvotes
Bring a power bar, some hotels don't have a lot of outlets and you can plug in a few things at once.
The Devil made me buy it - RFD. :twisted:
Jr. Member
Oct 20, 2009
171 posts
14 upvotes
Toronto
I found a little camera shop in Tokyo (can't remember in what district) where all they sold were vintage polaroids. It was amazing!

There's a large second-hand market district called Shimokitazawa in Tokyo. You'll find tons of vintage clothes, furniture, gadget stores there. It's a hidden gem from foreigners, but a well known place for the Japanese. Great place to shoot as well. There's awesome graffiti everywhere, and there's no shortage of restaurants.

[IMG]http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 3168_n.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 5487_n.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 0477_n.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 5992_n.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 9527_n.jpg[/IMG]

[IMG]http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos- ... 2682_n.jpg[/IMG]

If you look like a foreigner, you're going to be ignored if you're rowdy because they know foreigners don't possess that Japanese "je ne sais quoi" of mannerisms. Essentially, you can be you without worrying too much. Just don't go nuts, unless you're in a bar :)

PM me if you have any more questions :)
[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2006
439 posts
65 upvotes
Mississauga
Thanks for the tips so far!

bhrm wrote:
Aug 20th, 2012 2:13 pm
When travelling, simplify!

24mm is plenty wide, but if you enjoy landscapes, buildings etc then go wider!

Enjoy the trip and stay light.

The 50mm f1.8 is a no brainer, but you might find yourself using it more often. If you can, go for the 50mm f1.4. If you don't like it, just sell it after your trip. That's what I do for trips, I bought a 17-50 f2.8 (on Canon 7D) for my trip next month, selling it right after!
Never thought of that, buying a used lens and then reselling it after the trip....I actually might consider it lol. Definitely getting a 50mm for sure, haven't decided to get the 1.8 or 1.4, but leaning towards the 1.4

craftsman wrote:
Aug 21st, 2012 1:07 am
Because it's soooo crowded there, I took a superzoom 18-200mm along with a number of other lenses for my D7000. The superzoom is nice not only for the wide angle but for the telephoto capabilities so that you can isolate subject matter.

Where are you going in Japan? Normally, I don't recommend to people to shop for new camera equipment there as the prices are much more expensive but if you are looking for used stuff at EXCELLENT prices for the condition, Japan does have a few gems in terms of used camera stores! I got a 9+ used 50mm f/1.4 AF-D lens for 15,000 YEN.
I'm going to Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto for sure....and most likely more cities but those are the ones that we decided on for now. Since you mentioned it's so crowded, I was thinking of getting the 17-40 just for that, not sure if my 24-70 is wide enough in a crowded place. I'm going to look at other wide angle lenses that I can get that compliments my 24-70 better....17-40 overlaps with my lens too much but it's a fairly cheap wide angle lens so that's why I'm considering it.

hdom wrote:
Aug 21st, 2012 1:54 pm
Bring a power bar, some hotels don't have a lot of outlets and you can plug in a few things at once.
lol i might bring one if I can find a small one that doesn't take up much space in my suitcase.
Sr. Member
User avatar
Apr 26, 2003
901 posts
33 upvotes
Vancouver
I think your 24-70 will be fine.

craftsman's D7000 shooting at 18mm is tighter than your 5dm2 shooting at 24mm (18mm * 1.5 crop factor = 27mm)

Less decision making on whether to change your lens and more decision making on how to shoot. Keep it simple when traveling.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 2, 2007
5855 posts
352 upvotes
Toronto
Sell 24-70L, buy 24L.

You're set.
M-e-X-x wrote:
Nov 27th, 2011 7:22 am
Booty call AND you get gas money? Sweet!
My HEATWARE
100% Positive
Sr. Member
User avatar
Feb 6, 2008
998 posts
33 upvotes
Yea sell your 24-70 to me for cheap and get that 24L.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Feb 25, 2007
1726 posts
21 upvotes
Toronto
Your 24-70 is plenty for your first time trip ...enjoy your trip.
Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people. :idea:
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
10720 posts
4283 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
|Naruto| wrote:
Aug 21st, 2012 3:14 pm
I'm going to Tokyo, Osaka, and Kyoto for sure....and most likely more cities but those are the ones that we decided on for now. Since you mentioned it's so crowded, I was thinking of getting the 17-40 just for that, not sure if my 24-70 is wide enough in a crowded place. I'm going to look at other wide angle lenses that I can get that compliments my 24-70 better....17-40 overlaps with my lens too much but it's a fairly cheap wide angle lens so that's why I'm considering it.
Actually, it's not that crowded so don't worry too much about getting wide. As you can see from my shots that I posted, shots can be had at larger focal lengths! If you want to see more, you can check out a sample of my collection - http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/japan2011.

Get a JR Rail pass before you go as it will give you unlimited travel anywhere JR goes. You can only get the pass when you are outside of the Japan.

You'll spend most of you time in Kyoto as there is much more to see there (and the surrounding area) than Tokyo.

As for used camera goods, check out Fujiya in Toyko (which where I got my 50mm f/1.4 - they had 6 others instock!) - http://www.timeout.jp/en/tokyo/venue/2294/Fujiya-Camera. They even have their inventory online - http://www.fujiya-camera.co.jp/2010chuko_zaiko.phtml <- it's in Japanese however but with a little poking around you can find what you need.... :) For example, since you are a Canon fan, I just checked the price of the 16-35mm f/2.8L USM (they have 5 in stock) which ranged from 68,250 YEN to 89,250 YEN (which is approx $850 to $1100 CND). Keep in mind that even the "AB" quality lenses are in almost like new condition.
Member
Aug 10, 2004
463 posts
62 upvotes
Toronto
I'm actually going to Tokyo around the same time as OP. Great thread and thanks for all the info everyone!

I'll be bringing my T2i and I too am debating on what lenses to bring. The lens that pretty much stays on my camera now is my 24-105. I'm thinking about bringing that and looking to buy a used 10-22 for wide shots. Just debating whether or not I need to bring the 50mm 1.8 as well.. seems like a lot to carry with me already!
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
10720 posts
4283 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
jc427 wrote:
Aug 22nd, 2012 10:45 am
I'm actually going to Tokyo around the same time as OP. Great thread and thanks for all the info everyone!

I'll be bringing my T2i and I too am debating on what lenses to bring. The lens that pretty much stays on my camera now is my 24-105. I'm thinking about bringing that and looking to buy a used 10-22 for wide shots. Just debating whether or not I need to bring the 50mm 1.8 as well.. seems like a lot to carry with me already!
If you are going to say in Tokyo, get a good understanding of the subway system and how to get from point A to point B. There are multiple lines/companies/passes that you can get. Once you get used to the system, it's not too bad to get around... the problem is getting used to it in the first place!

Have a look at Fujiya (which I posted a link for) for used equipment.
[OP]
Member
Dec 10, 2006
439 posts
65 upvotes
Mississauga
craftsman wrote:
Aug 22nd, 2012 12:23 am
Actually, it's not that crowded so don't worry too much about getting wide. As you can see from my shots that I posted, shots can be had at larger focal lengths! If you want to see more, you can check out a sample of my collection - http://rlouie.zenfolio.com/japan2011.

Get a JR Rail pass before you go as it will give you unlimited travel anywhere JR goes. You can only get the pass when you are outside of the Japan.

You'll spend most of you time in Kyoto as there is much more to see there (and the surrounding area) than Tokyo.

As for used camera goods, check out Fujiya in Toyko (which where I got my 50mm f/1.4 - they had 6 others instock!) - http://www.timeout.jp/en/tokyo/venue/2294/Fujiya-Camera. They even have their inventory online - http://www.fujiya-camera.co.jp/2010chuko_zaiko.phtml <- it's in Japanese however but with a little poking around you can find what you need.... :) For example, since you are a Canon fan, I just checked the price of the 16-35mm f/2.8L USM (they have 5 in stock) which ranged from 68,250 YEN to 89,250 YEN (which is approx $850 to $1100 CND). Keep in mind that even the "AB" quality lenses are in almost like new condition.
Thanks Craftsman, this was very useful information! I'll definitely pay a visit to Fujiya just to check out their used stock. If I can get a great deal on a lens I want, that will make this trip even better haha.

Sounds like the 24-70 is good enough for the trip...allows me to save some money too lol. I really appreciate the feedback from everyone!

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