Voigtlander 17.5mm as a holiday lens

I was just back from a sketching trip in Spain, visiting Barcelona, Granada, Seville and Madrid.

For this trip, I was brought along the GH3, 12-35mm f/2.8 lens and the Voigtlander 17.5mm f/0.95.

If you can only bring one lens for holiday, I recommend the Panasonic 12-35mm. It shoots wide and can zoom to a respectable 70mm (equivalent). f/2.8 means you can shoot into late evenings and into lit nights.

I brought the 12-35mm lens because I wanted to shoot some video. In the end, it turned out I shot most of the video using the Voigtlander instead, which wasn't my preferred choice.

For me, there was no question as to which to bring for the second lens. f/0.95 means you can shoot into the night, even if it's soft wide open, you will still get the shot. In an earlier overseas trip to Bangkok, I brought the Olympus 17mm f/1.8 lens and felt it wasn't fast enough. So this time, I brought the fastest lens.

While I recommend the 12-35mm lens if you're intend on bringing just one lens, personally for me, for one lens, I would bring the Voigtlander just because the f/0.95 can shoot in all sorts of lighting condition. The only thing prefer over the Voigtlander 17.5mm is the Fujifilm X100 which is much lighter and compact.

So here are some shots from Spain, shot mainly with the 17.5mm and occasionally the 12-35mm.

This was with the 17.5mm. I managed to manual focus fast enough. It's not sharp, but it's a shot.

A panorama automatically stitched by Google Plus.

The Sagrada Familia queue circles the compound. Always book the tickets online.

Sagrada Familia has been under construction since 1882.

Interior of Sagrada Familia

Policemen at the park outside Sagrada Familia

Musicians at Park Guell terrace.

Alhambra in Granada

A flamenco dance inside a gypsy cave

This was stitched by Google Plus again using several vertical format photos

You never have to worry about ISO when shooting at night with a f/0.95 lens.

Santa Ana church in Seville

While I prefer the colours from Fujifilm X100, GH3 with the 17.5mm is pretty good too.

This is from the 17.5mm. Not that sharp but it's a very clean shot without noise.

This video is shot mostly with the 17.5mm lens. Ideally, the lens should be used with a tripod. Even though it's wide, handheld footage still has a tendency to be jerky depending on how stable your hands are. Again, ideally, it would be great to use this lens on a camera with inbuilt body stabilisation. 12-35mm is still the better lens for handheld video.

Some people like to bring zoom lens for holidays. Some like primes. I prefer primes because they are faster so they can shoot in all sorts of lighting conditions.

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