Show Examples of Portraiture Using The 70-200mm f/2.8 VR II and TC's

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As the title suggests, I'm looking for sample portraits using a 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII and either the Nikon 1.4xII or 2.0xIII teleconverters.

I realize that I lose either 1 or 2 stops depending on the TC used and in either case, that's just fine. I have no problem with a 280mm FOV and f/4 or a 400mm FOV at f/5.6.

If anyone has both or has had the opportunity to compare, I'd be curious to know how they differ in terms of performance and IQ. I'm fine with minute changes that might occur but in the end the image still has to be sharp with good contrast and color.

From what I've seen, both TC's produce some stunning results but I know that we're looking at scaled and optimized jpg's online.

Any opinions? Suggestions? Is there a clear winner or are both TC's going to do the job nicely?
 
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Hey Robert!

For some reason we keep crossing paths, lol :biggrin:

I know you asked for TC-14E and TC-20EIII but what I got instead is the TC-17EII. I just received it yesterday and.... I'm actually very happy with it!

Here are two samples, both at 340mm wide open. Pardon the bad poses, portrait is not my forte :redface: Note- I softened them a bit, the SOOC shots are very sharp and not skin-friendly.

5723910605_6c486ab7db_z.jpg
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D7H_4218-Edit by JGI, on Flickr

5724468208_3b6e8dc262_z.jpg
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D7H_4224-Edit by JGI, on Flickr
 
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Thanks for the kind words, Robert. I chose the 1.7x because I felt that it's the best compromise between IQ and having enough reach. If I get the 1.4, sure the IQ is better, but I felt that 280 would not be enough reach. Likewise, the 2.0x will give me 400mm, but it also turns the lens into a 5.6, and f/8 if I stop down. I spent weeks reading about TC's and other people's experiences with it (I've never used one before) and I'm very happy that I got the 1.7, no regrets at all.

What's interesting is that when the TC is attached and there's not enough light, the AF slows down.. almost as slow as the 180 2.8. When there's a lot of light, the AF speed is fast just like a naked lens. When the TC is not attached, the lens' AF is fast regardless of the light condition.
 
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Not sure this is what you want.....

original.jpg
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D700 with 70-200VRII + TC20EIII @ 400mm f8
 
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Thanks for the kind words, Robert. I chose the 1.7x because I felt that it's the best compromise between IQ and having enough reach. If I get the 1.4, sure the IQ is better, but I felt that 280 would not be enough reach. Likewise, the 2.0x will give me 400mm, but it also turns the lens into a 5.6, and f/8 if I stop down. I spent weeks reading about TC's and other people's experiences with it (I've never used one before) and I'm very happy that I got the 1.7, no regrets at all.

What's interesting is that when the TC is attached and there's not enough light, the AF slows down.. almost as slow as the 180 2.8. When there's a lot of light, the AF speed is fast just like a naked lens. When the TC is not attached, the lens' AF is fast regardless of the light condition.

I wish there was a way to specify the amount of slowdown.

If you were to try to define it, would you consider it to be a very slight, but noticeable slow down? or is it significant and quite noticeable?

When the AF does slow down, does it in any way affect the accuracy or ability to acquire focus?
 
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If you were to try to define it, would you consider it to be a very slight, but noticeable slow down? or is it significant and quite noticeable?

It is noticeable. You know how when you put the lens cap on and let the 70-200 rack focus, you can't read the distance scale because it goes so fast, right? If you do this with the TC on, it slows down to a point where you CAN read the numbers as they scroll by. The more light you have, the faster it moves.

When the AF does slow down, does it in any way affect the accuracy or ability to acquire focus?

No, it's still accurate.. just slow.

The other thing that most people don't mention is the viewfinder brightness. With the TC-17 on, the VF is not as bright as a naked lens. Albeit not enough to be a distraction, it IS definitely noticeable.

On bokeh...
On full body portraits (with the TC on), at around 20 ft, it cannot fully erase the background like a, say 300/2.8 or 200/2. I was looking at (Jonathan F2's) full body shots with his 300/4 AFS and even that lens can isolate better than the TC-17 @ 340mm. BUT.. on tighter headshots (shoulder-to-head framing), it CAN erase the background completely, similar to an 85/1.4D rendition. Now that I have the TC, I realized that the 70-200 VRII + 1.7x, despite the longer FL, simply cannot hang with the naked 300/4 AFS as far as background rendition is concerned. The 300/4 is far superior in this regard. Now I understand why people own both lenses... TC is good to get reach quickly, but not a panacea.

Sorry for the long post :biggrin:
 
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It is noticeable. You know how when you put the lens cap on and let the 70-200 rack focus, you can't read the distance scale because it goes so fast, right? If you do this with the TC on, it slows down to a point where you CAN read the numbers as they scroll by. The more light you have, the faster it moves.



No, it's still accurate.. just slow.

The other thing that most people don't mention is the viewfinder brightness. With the TC-17 on, the VF is not as bright as a naked lens. Albeit not enough to be a distraction, it IS definitely noticeable.

On bokeh...
On full body portraits (with the TC on), at around 20 ft, it cannot fully erase the background like a, say 300/2.8 or 200/2. I was looking at (Jonathan F2's) full body shots with his 300/4 AFS and even that lens can isolate better than the TC-17 @ 340mm. BUT.. on tighter headshots (shoulder-to-head framing), it CAN erase the background completely, similar to an 85/1.4D rendition. Now that I have the TC, I realized that the 70-200 VRII + 1.7x, despite the longer FL, simply cannot hang with the naked 300/4 AFS as far as background rendition is concerned. The 300/4 is far superior in this regard. Now I understand why people own both lenses... TC is good to get reach quickly, but not a panacea.

Sorry for the long post :biggrin:

Thank you Joseph. That's great information and does give me reason to pause since my primary reason for wanting reach is to also have greater subject isolation. Hmmmmm.............
 
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If you're a sharpness junky, you would be better off with the 300 f4. It's super sharp wide open, plus great isolation.
 
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For portraiture, I don't think I'd use the 70-200 VR-II with a TC. The 300 f/4 AFS makes a much better closeup portraiture/macro lens because of it's excellent closeup focus. With the 300 f4 AFS you can get up much closer than the 70-200 VR-II.
 
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If you're a sharpness junky, you would be better off with the 300 f4. It's super sharp wide open, plus great isolation.

For portraiture, I don't think I'd use the 70-200 VR-II with a TC. The 300 f/4 AFS makes a much better closeup portraiture/macro lens because of it's excellent closeup focus. With the 300 f4 AFS you can get up much closer than the 70-200 VR-II.

Thanks Robert and Jonathan. I've been looking at the 300mm f/4 AF-S for the last hour or so.

I'm sure that no one has an answer to this, but is there any word or indication that a replacement 'G' version of the 300mm f/4 will be released?
 
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Thanks Robert and Jonathan. I've been looking at the 300mm f/4 AF-S for the last hour or so.

I'm sure that no one has an answer to this, but is there any word or indication that a replacement 'G' version of the 300mm f/4 will be released?

I'm sure it's in the pipeline. All Nikon has to do is add VR, nano-coating (for better TC usage and wide open performance) and replace the built-in hood with a removable one. My built in hood is already dinged up, so I'd prefer one I can replace!

As long as they keep the close-up focusing feature, that lens will be near perfect!

Here's a sample with the D3 & 300:
karma_portrait.jpg
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I would suspect paparazzi, birding or animal forums may have more examples. 70-200 is quite long for portraiture...in which we more likely won't be That far away from the subjects.
 
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I know that long portraiture is huge. Perhaps not so much around here but it's being done by more and more people every day. I love the 300mm focal length and consider it to be a fantastic for subject isolation, rendering of backgrounds and the compression achieved. It's simply delightful.

By classic portrait standards, we should all be using an 85mm or 135mm for portraiture but like so many things in photography, that's changed.
 
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I know what you mean, I love taking anything pass the 100mm mark. There's just a great feel and isolation to it that's hard to capture with anything less. I'm just trying to think how far away we have to be from subjects...maybe even need a radio. Haha.
 
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I know what you mean, I love taking anything pass the 100mm mark. There's just a great feel and isolation to it that's hard to capture with anything less. I'm just trying to think how far away we have to be from subjects...maybe even need a radio. Haha.

Yep, depending on the shot and composition you may have to be far back.

LOL, I have a set of 2 way radios for location shooting. :biggrin:
 
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