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Old 9th December 2012, 12:51   #11071
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Lightbulb Re: The DSLR Thread

I have a big question, and I thought what better place to get it answered, than this thread?

I will be going to Bharatpur from 26th Dec to 31st Dec. This will also include a trip to Taj Mahal. I have a Nikon D5000. Now 55-200mm lens which I have falls short of anything and everything in birding. Hence I have decided to rent a lens. To cut everything short, I have to make a choice out of the below 4 options:
  1. Nikon 70-300mm VR
  2. Nikon 300F4 prime + 1.4x teleconverter
  3. Nikon 300F4 prime
  4. Sigma 150-500mm with a borrowed Canon 550D body.
What would you guys suggest here? I am thinking of 150-500 with a Canon body, but I don't know how suitable is the 500mm end (too soft photos?) for taking photos of birds in flight as well as bird portraits?

The lenses, I have decided to rent from here - http://primesandzooms.com/.

Any other alternatives?

Last edited by W.A.G.7 : 9th December 2012 at 12:53.
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Old 9th December 2012, 14:02   #11072
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by W.A.G.7 View Post
I have to make a choice out of the below 4 options:
  1. Nikon 70-300mm VR
  2. Nikon 300F4 prime + 1.4x teleconverter
  3. Nikon 300F4 prime
  4. Sigma 150-500mm with a borrowed Canon 550D body.
What would you guys suggest here? I am thinking of 150-500 with a Canon body, but I don't know how suitable is the 500mm end (too soft photos?) for taking photos of birds in flight as well as bird portraits?

Any other alternatives?
How comfortable will you be using a Canon after having owned a Nikon? Fumbling will make you lose shots. My 1st choice is:

a) A DX camera, your D5K will do nicely, with the 300mm F/4 and 1.4X TC. I have seen this combo used by my relative and the results are really good. So you get an effective 630mm reach. That should suffice for most situations except close ups.

b) Canon with the Sigma 150-500 zoom provided you get to know your way around the functions and buttons. Don't expect too much from a super zoom.

c) 70-300 VR2 - cheapest option but the lens is lightweight compared to the 300mm F/4 and has great IQ.

If this is a once in a lifetime trip take something tried and tested and something that you are comfortable using.
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Old 9th December 2012, 14:49   #11073
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

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Originally Posted by rajismine View Post
My advise, don't do this much. Stars are the farthest subject anyways so simply put the lens in MF and infinity and click
Thanks. Which brings me to another question. How do you focus to infinity?

Btw, never tried the focus in AF then switch to manual focus composition trick. Will try it sometime soon.
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Old 9th December 2012, 15:11   #11074
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

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Originally Posted by mobike008 View Post
Thanks. Which brings me to another question. How do you focus to infinity?

Btw, never tried the focus in AF then switch to manual focus composition trick. Will try it sometime soon.
Simple. See you lens. Move it to MF. Now you can freely rotate the front ring of the lens. on one extreme, its the closes the lens can focus and on another extreme, its the infinity :-)

See your lenses and all will have the infinity mark
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Old 9th December 2012, 17:11   #11075
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Lightbulb Re: The DSLR Thread

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Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post
a) A DX camera, your D5K will do nicely, with the 300mm F/4 and 1.4X TC. I have seen this combo used by my relative and the results are really good. So you get an effective 630mm reach. That should suffice for most situations except close ups.

c) 70-300 VR2 - cheapest option but the lens is lightweight compared to the 300mm F/4 and has great IQ.

If this is a once in a lifetime trip take something tried and tested and something that you are comfortable using.
Thanks R2D2. As you said, Canon controls are opposite that of Nikon. But more than that my main concern is that I don't know what condition the Sigma piece I am renting; is in. And I am not to sure how fast the lens will be @ 500mm end.

Hence most probably I would go in for 300F4 (maybe without TC) or may be 70-300. I will rent a combination this coming weekend maybe and then putup my observations. Lets see.
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Old 9th December 2012, 17:58   #11076
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by W.A.G.7 View Post
I have a big question, and I thought what better place to get it answered, than this thread?

I will be going to Bharatpur from 26th Dec to 31st Dec. This will also include a trip to Taj Mahal. I have a Nikon D5000. Now 55-200mm lens which I have falls short of anything and everything in birding. Hence I have decided to rent a lens. To cut everything short, I have to make a choice out of the below 4 options:
  1. Nikon 70-300mm VR
  2. Nikon 300F4 prime + 1.4x teleconverter
  3. Nikon 300F4 prime
  4. Sigma 150-500mm with a borrowed Canon 550D body.
What would you guys suggest here? I am thinking of 150-500 with a Canon body, but I don't know how suitable is the 500mm end (too soft photos?) for taking photos of birds in flight as well as bird portraits?

The lenses, I have decided to rent from here - http://primesandzooms.com/.

Any other alternatives?
For birding a prime is a better option compared to zooms, as most of the time you will need the maximum telephoto range. So go for the 300/F4 + 1.4TC. Please note this is not a VR lense, hence you will need high ISO fast shots.
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Old 9th December 2012, 18:58   #11077
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Default The monster is here

Guys,

A dream come true for me. A dream that started over 30 years ago as a school kid when I ogled at those mind blowing photographs (and the tempting camera/lens advertisements) in Nat Geo magazine. I wanted to develop photography as a serious hobby thereafter. It took me a very long time, more than half a life time.

Introducing Sentinel Prime, the Nikon 600mm F/4 VR II. Big brother of Optimus Prime, my 300mm F/2.8 VR II. BTW I was watching Transformers - Dark of the Moon yesterday. What a coincidence.

This thing is a BEAST! I've never held a lens this big. You can fit a pro D3/D4 FX camera into the outer lens hood and the front element is 6.53" across.
Face on it looks menacing like the unblinking eye of a Giant Squid. Sentinel came in a beautiful aluminum box with faux leather finish.

This lens requires some serious support equipment. Forget hand holding it for any length of time unless you're built like Schwarzenegger. Plan to use my Gitzo Systematic tripods and a beautiful Gitzo hydrostatic ballhead made specifically for super telephotos. On the wish list is a Wimberley gimbal head. That will have to wait as this lens costs, well, quite a bit.
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Old 9th December 2012, 19:21   #11078
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Quote:
Originally Posted by W.A.G.7
I have a big question, and I thought what better place to get it answered, than this thread?

I will be going to Bharatpur from 26th Dec to 31st Dec. This will also include a trip to Taj Mahal. I have a Nikon D5000. Now 55-200mm lens which I have falls short of anything and everything in birding. Hence I have decided to rent a lens. To cut everything short, I have to make a choice out of the below 4 options:
[*]Nikon 70-300mm VR[*]Nikon 300F4 prime + 1.4x teleconverter[*]Nikon 300F4 prime[*]Sigma 150-500mm with a borrowed Canon 550D body.

What would you guys suggest here? I am thinking of 150-500 with a Canon body, but I don't know how suitable is the 500mm end (too soft photos?) for taking photos of birds in flight as well as bird portraits?

The lenses, I have decided to rent from here - http://primesandzooms.com/.

Any other alternatives?
Hi ,

As the common saying goes , every lens is always lil short of reach for birding. I recently upgraded from 70-300 vr to 300mm f4 with 1.4 tc. I have posted the pics taken with this combo in my travelogue section .

I would suggest you to go ahead and pick the 300f 4. The only limitation is non vr however this is not a bulky lens that you cannot hand hold. It gives you a 420mm reach with the tc and a 600mm crop factor.
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Old 9th December 2012, 19:49   #11079
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Quote:
Originally Posted by W.A.G.7 View Post
Hence most probably I would go in for 300F4 (maybe without TC) or may be 70-300. I will rent a combination this coming weekend maybe and then putup my observations. Lets see.
If I were you I'd take a tried and tested combination. That's the 300mm and TC for birds and wildlife from a distance. You can use the 70-300 for wide and normal focal length shots. Have fun on your trip! :-)
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Old 9th December 2012, 20:33   #11080
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post

Introducing Sentinel Prime, the Nikon 600mm F/4 VR II. Big brother of Optimus Prime, my 300mm F/2.8 VR II. BTW I was watching Transformers - Dark of the Moon yesterday. What a coincidence.
Congrats on the new addition. Do we now get to see some pictures shot with the awesome kit you have?
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Old 9th December 2012, 20:40   #11081
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R2d2 that is a monster. Congrats, any pics taken using this?
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Old 9th December 2012, 21:02   #11082
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by amolpol View Post
Congrats on the new addition. Do we now get to see some pictures shot with the awesome kit you have?
Thanks Amol. This has been in the wings for a long time. No, I haven't even taken a single pic with this lens. It will happen in the coming days.

I'm looking for some tips from you given your pretty extensive experience with super telephotos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by govigov View Post
R2d2 that is a monster. Congrats, any pics taken using this?
Thanks govigov. Yes it is a monster and takes a lot of getting used to. Comparing the other lenses in my collection to this one is like comparing a car to a Volvo twin axle bus.
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Old 9th December 2012, 22:19   #11083
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post
Guys,

A dream come true for me. A dream that started over 30 years ago as a school kid when I ogled at those mind blowing photographs (and the tempting camera/lens advertisements) in Nat Geo magazine. I wanted to develop photography as a serious hobby thereafter. It took me a very long time, more than half a life time.

Introducing Sentinel Prime, the Nikon 600mm F/4 VR II. Big brother of Optimus Prime, my 300mm F/2.8 VR II. BTW I was watching Transformers - Dark of the Moon yesterday. What a coincidence.

This thing is a BEAST! I've never held a lens this big. You can fit a pro D3/D4 FX camera into the outer lens hood and the front element is 6.53" across.
Face on it looks menacing like the unblinking eye of a Giant Squid. Sentinel came in a beautiful aluminum box with faux leather finish.

This lens requires some serious support equipment. Forget hand holding it for any length of time unless you're built like Schwarzenegger. Plan to use my Gitzo Systematic tripods and a beautiful Gitzo hydrostatic ballhead made specifically for super telephotos. On the wish list is a Wimberley gimbal head. That will have to wait as this lens costs, well, quite a bit.
Congratulations. Its a bazooka isn't it. I can imagine you being stopped at security checks to verify if you are not a terrorist

Looking forward to see some nice reviews and some master pieces from you
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Old 9th December 2012, 23:46   #11084
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Question Re: The DSLR Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aroy View Post
So go for the 300/F4 + 1.4TC.
Quote:
Originally Posted by aravind84 View Post
Hi , As the common saying goes , every lens is always lil short of reach for birding. I recently upgraded from 70-300 vr to 300mm f4 with 1.4 tc.
Quote:
Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post
If I were you I'd take a tried and tested combination. That's the 300mm and TC for birds and wildlife from a distance. You can use the 70-300 for wide and normal focal length shots. Have fun on your trip! :-)
Guys, thanks a lot for the suggestions. As put down above, for birding even 800mm+ is not enough, but somewhere I need to pull the financial plug I have also decided to go in for the 300F4 + 1.4Xtc combo, since there are many plus points for this particular lens. I will post a travelogue here when I return.

Quote:
Originally Posted by R2D2 View Post
Introducing Sentinel Prime, the Nikon 600mm F/4 VR II. Big brother of Optimus Prime, my 300mm F/2.8 VR II.
Congrats! That's a huge lens! Since we are in Pune, can we meet up sometime? I want to see the lens in person
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Old 10th December 2012, 09:09   #11085
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Default Re: The DSLR Thread

I recently ordered SB 400 from Flipkart, which was delivered yesterday. While checking it out, I took about 30 to 40 shots with the flash, direct as well as bounce mode. And then the batteries died (I had inserted a fresh pair of batteries). So it literally ate through the batteries. If I were to use it for any function, I am afraid I shall have to carry spare batteries which will be heavier than the camera equipment.

Can I use rechargeable batteries with this flash with the same/better performance? Which type of rechargeable batteries would be good? Should I go with a two-cell charger or a four-cell one? Any specific brands which are better?
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