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A Couple BIF Captured From This Weekend

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by jfenton, Jul 14, 2008.

  1. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    I believe all but one were captured with just the 500 and no TC.

    All were shot, AFC, 51pt, NearUniWB preset:

    Osprey female with stick:

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    Osprey male with bluefish...

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    Willet in flight....

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    Tern in front of dunes grass....

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    Bonaparte's gull in front of surf....

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  2. Excellent Jim. I like the willet best simply because I know how fast they move. But the gull's wing in the water is something else too.
  3. waleedy


    Aug 2, 2007
    Stunning .. !
  4. AviSys


    Mar 31, 2008
    Placitas, NM
    Beautiful, Jim.

    Jim, this may sound stupid, but is it possible the bokeh of a lens could contribute to AF problems? Some lenses (and/or lenses with extenders) tend to create background images with waves and/or lines, particularly with grass or limbs, which might confuse AF systems. Smooth bokeh wouldn't?

    Yeah, dumb . . . well, maybe . . . ?

    Maybe there's more than one reason to select a long lens with good bokeh?
  5. The Willet and Tern shots are spectacular!
  6. KG72

    KG72 Guest

    Great pics. Love the one with the gull dipping the tip of its wing into the water.
  7. Triggaaar


    Jun 15, 2008
    I'd be happy with those :wink:
  8. rgordin


    Jun 3, 2008
    Washington, DC
    Ditto on both - great pics and love the last one of the gull.
  9. lmatney


    Oct 25, 2007
    Goodyear, AZ
    Wow Jim. I'm glad the new D300s seem to be working well for you.
  10. MMarz


    Sep 15, 2007
    Long Island, NY
    I love the Gull !!!

    After a recent post in another thread, and following my day today...I was going to reach out to you to ask about your results with 51 pt.

    I may not have given 51pt a decent chance because my results today, in difficult conditions (though not BiF's) would support 51 pt.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 16, 2008
  11. Roger T

    Roger T Guest

    Jim, Mike and all who are following this thread.

    I was doing some manual reading last night and ran across the section

    A4: Focus Tracking with Lock On

    There are 4 settings in here, Long, Normal, Short and Off.

    I am really curious as to if this would effect focus lock on your BIF pics.

    What settings are you currently using for A4??

    What brought this to mind is someone was shooting surfers, and had to go to the short setting because of the drops of water from the waves and board.

  12. MMarz


    Sep 15, 2007
    Long Island, NY
    Roger, CS A4 is intended to allow focus to hold lock should a secondary subject pass between the primary subject and the camera.

    As the option names would hint to, it is a period of time that the AF system will ignore the secondary subject before attempting acquire it.

    Unofficially, the delay time is...

    Off = .3 seconds
    Short = .5 seconds
    Normal = 1.0 seconds
    Long = 1.5 - 2.0 seconds

    (Taken from Jason Odell's article on the CAM 2000 AF System & Digital Darryl's Understanding the CAM2000 System, from Nikonians.org, middle of the article..)

    The situation is the boss as far as which setting, and when...

    Many birders rely on Short or Normal for perched birds..this prevents another bird passing by or a wind blown leaf from being considered the primary target. These same photogs will likely go to A4 Off if they are capturing the same bird as it launches from a perch, and certainly when in flight. I am pretty sure Jim keeps it set to Off for nearly all of his inflight shots.

    Also, consider that if you are tracking a subject coming towards you...a bird, a boat, person, plane or surfer...it's the same as a secondary target entering the viewfinder since what [I believe] the AF system is doing is tracking the distance to the primary subject. If that distance changes drastically (either because a second potential target enters the viewfinder or because the subject is coming right at you), AF will hold lock if A4 is set to anything other than Off.

    For your surfers...Yes, I would start with Short.. You are typically tracking a surfer across the wave face, not directly at you. And you are correct, the splashes and surf will be a competing with your primary for focus lock. Off would probably be a nightmare and Long wouldn't allow you to track the surfer.

    I shot a competitive swim meet last night.. CS A4 set to Short and, oddly enough for me, 51pt. I should say I was amazed at the percentage of in-focus images given all the splashing and that I shot down the lane with swimmers coming to and away from me, although not all that quickly relative to a bird on the wing.
  13. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    I Shoot SHORT All of the Time

    It in no way, shape or form affects the initial acquisition speed and I have confirmed this with Nikon.
  14. Thanks Jim,
    I always look forward to your post.The gull shot is unreal!
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