Telephoto Zoom for Z6

Joined
Jul 25, 2017
Messages
956
Location
Pittsburgh, PA
Real Name
Ian
Yup.
I think there are some on the various forums that think ALL of the consumer/non-pro lenses are JUNK.
Maybe they have a 50 inch monitor to look at the images.​
But for many of us, the consumer zooms, when used within their limits, work just fine.
As I tell my students, you don't NEED a $3,000 pro lens to make a 2x3 INCH picture in the yearbook.

It is about matching the photographers needs (not wants) to the gear.
  • If I am shooting a football game in broad daylight, I may want a pro 70-200/2.8, but I do NOT need it. A good consumer grade 70-300/4-5.6 would do just fine. There is PLENTY of sunlight for the slower lens.
  • If I were shooting at night under lights or in the high school gym, that is a totally different story. Then I would NEED the faster f/2.8 lens, in order to not be shooting at ISO 12800 or 25600.
    • Or a camera that has GOOD high ISO performance, in order to use the slow lenses.
    • I told my high school AD, at night and in the gym, it IS about having the right equipment, for the LOW light level.
While I generally agree with you, one area where a slower lens can’t compete, even in broad daylight, is the rendering. An f/5.6 lens will never look like an f/2.8 lens will in terms of isolating the subject.
 
Joined
May 11, 2006
Messages
42,076
Location
CHARLOTTE
Real Name
Randy
Yup.
I think there are some on the various forums that think ALL of the consumer/non-pro lenses are JUNK.
Maybe they have a 50 inch monitor to look at the images.​
But for many of us, the consumer zooms, when used within their limits, work just fine.
As I tell my students, you don't NEED a $3,000 pro lens to make a 2x3 INCH picture in the yearbook.

It is about matching the photographers needs (not wants) to the gear.
  • If I am shooting a football game in broad daylight, I may want a pro 70-200/2.8, but I do NOT need it. A good consumer grade 70-300/4-5.6 would do just fine. There is PLENTY of sunlight for the slower lens.
  • If I were shooting at night under lights or in the high school gym, that is a totally different story. Then I would NEED the faster f/2.8 lens, in order to not be shooting at ISO 12800 or 25600.
    • Or a camera that has GOOD high ISO performance, in order to use the slow lenses.
    • I told my high school AD, at night and in the gym, it IS about having the right equipment, for the LOW light level.
you forget a big reason to shoot sports at 2.8, the backgrounds. I shoot a lot of high school sports and I'm at 2.8 all the time, day and night games.
 
Joined
Jul 8, 2019
Messages
398
Location
SF Bay Area, California, USA
While I generally agree with you, one area where a slower lens can’t compete, even in broad daylight, is the rendering. An f/5.6 lens will never look like an f/2.8 lens will in terms of isolating the subject.
you forget a big reason to shoot sports at 2.8, the backgrounds. I shoot a lot of high school sports and I'm at 2.8 all the time, day and night games.
I agree with both of you for the way the image looks.

My point was, for me, the exposure is the #1 factor. If I can't get a decent exposure, I don't get a picture.
I do not need a f/2.8 lens during the day, I could easily use a f/5.6 lens.
But at night, I really want the f/2.8 lens, when the light level goes way down, and I am struggling for every stop of light.
For me, once I get a usable exposure, then DoF comes into play.
So, as you say, I can shoot wide open during the day, to get a shallower DoF.
Or close down, to get more DoF.

However, I have a counter argument to shallow DoF.
My yearbook staff (my client) does NOT want shallow DoF. They want ALL the players/students in focus, not just the one player/student. And for a high school yearbook, that makes sense. They want to see the faces of all the students. The reason is, we may shoot 300+ pics of a game, but only 5 will get into the yearbook. That means that not all the players on the team will be in the action pics. So getting as many sharp recognizable faces of the players and students in those few picture is more important to the staff than a blurry background.
And some pictures are "busy," because they wanted a picture with more players/students, to get pics of more students. This is because of the limited number of action pictures.

For some sports, like varsity football, the standard here is night games. Day games are rare, for us.
Unfortunately for the yearbook staff, the night games have to be shot WIDE open, so like it or not, a shallow DoF.

Contrary to the yearbook, when I shoot for the AD, I am not limited to just 5 pictures. So I can shoot shallow DoF and shots of only ONE player, because I post up to 100+ pictures.

So the real answer f/2.8 or f/5.6, is based on the purpose of the picture.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2012
Messages
210
Location
UK - Northwest
Joined
Dec 7, 2005
Messages
479
Location
MN, USA
As good as the 70-300 AF-P is, I decided to bite the bullet and also purchase the Nikon 300mm F4 PF with the TC-14E III to just give me that little bit more reach (at the same aperture). Pretty pleased with the initial efforts on the Z7:

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What is that 1st and 3rd bird? Ready to give up that EM1mkII yet? I loved shooting Olympus but between the 300PF, 50 1.8S, 24-70 2.8S, and the (seemingly to me) greater flexibility of the Z6 and Z7 RAW files, I just couldn't go back. But that EM1mkII is still one of my favorite all-time cameras (now supplanted by the Z6!)
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2012
Messages
210
Location
UK - Northwest
It's what we call in Europe a "Blue Tit" (Cyanistes caeruleus). Think you guys refer to the species as "chickadees" ?

TBH, I do still love my Olympus Gear (added an EM1X as well about 6 months ago) and that's a beaut, and I have far too many of Olympus pro lenses (including the fantastic 300mm F4 Pro). I've managed as well to pretty much address the noise issue of Micro Four Thirds by integrating Topaz Labs new "Denoise AI" into my PP process (absolutely love this software). For example, here's a grey heron shot at first light on a very overcast and moody morning on the EM1X @ ISO 4000.

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When the lens lineup of the Z series matures (I'm looking forward to the new Z 200-600 if it's as good as the new Sony version). Maybe then when I can replace all my Micro Four thirds focal lengths with Native Z versions, then I'll consider shooting only Nikon again (as I used to).
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2019
Messages
241
Location
North Springfield VA
Real Name
Bill Walderman
DIF with the Z6 + FTZ + AF-P 70-300 -- Max and Lucky, just for fun
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