The Pond was kind this morning (5/7)

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I went down to the duck pond this morning early. Not much action at all compared to yesterday, but wouldn't you know it, I actually got some pretty decent shots. (I also met new member Chris Knight, and got together with an old friend, Fred Fitch....;-)).

In any case, the few good shot opportunities turned into good images for a change. Here are just a few examples. All shot with the D2H / 300mm F2.8.

Honker coming in for a landing:
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Here he is after a wide swing around the pond:
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Looking at me like 'what you staring at':
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And finally, a couple of a Mallard, very early in the session:
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Thanks for looking.
 
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Gale said:
Well you were right on the money this morning Frank


Excellent.
Gale,

Thanks. I forgot to mention that the Goose shots were taken while I was on the phone with Janie (she's down in Orlando visiting her mom). I said, 'hold on, there are some geese coming in', and snapped off about 12 - 15 perfect (for me at least) shots.

Maybe I need to have her call more often. :lol:
 
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Frank...

The next time I have targets flying in...is it allright if I call you? :)

Great shooting man! The only thing that I could shoot here today would be wind blown rain :(
 
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Wow! Nice shots. Especially like the wingtips on the water on both Mallard shots. Is your 300 f2.8 the AFS version? I just found a used 300 f2.8 AF for about the price of a new 300 f4 AFS. Just wondering if the quality is on par with yours or the f4.
 
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Kevin Scott said:
Wow! Nice shots. Especially like the wingtips on the water on both Mallard shots. Is your 300 f2.8 the AFS version? I just found a used 300 f2.8 AF for about the price of a new 300 f4 AFS. Just wondering if the quality is on par with yours or the f4.
Scott,

Mine is an AF-S II. If you can get one for the price of the 300 f4, then you should jump on it. That said, the 300 f4 is a heck of a good lens. Just look at some of the pictures posted here using that lens (Backdoctor for example).
 
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Flew said:
Scott,

Mine is an AF-S II. If you can get one for the price of the 300 f4, then you should jump on it. That said, the 300 f4 is a heck of a good lens. Just look at some of the pictures posted here using that lens (Backdoctor for example).
I've seen Harris' photos and I really like the quality of the 300 f4. Just not sure if I should go longer... like 400 or 500. Tradeoff is they'd be manual focus (to save $).
 
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Johnnymg said:
Frank

Those are awesome!!

Can you tell us a few details of the PP please. I'm curious how you got such good pics!!! :)

Thanks
JohnG
John,

I use the Ron Reznick process in Capture to process the RAW (.nef) files, then do a pass through PS CS to touch up levels, crop, resize, add my border and signature, and then I do one final very light sharpening pass (something like 100, 0.25, 0 to 120, 0.25, 0 depending on the shot).

Hope that helps.
 
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Kevin Scott said:
I've seen Harris' photos and I really like the quality of the 300 f4. Just not sure if I should go longer... like 400 or 500. Tradeoff is they'd be manual focus (to save $).
Kevin,

It depends on what you are going to be shooting. If stationary subjects, the a long MF lens might be just the ticket. If you are planning on shooting action though, such as flying birds, then I would stick with an AF-S style lens. These are good for static subjects also, and you can always add a TC to get out past 400mm. I can shoot 300 2.8, 420 4.0, 510 4.8 and 600 5.6 with the 300 2.8 and the 1.4, 1.7, and 2.0 TC's.
 
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Sorry for another question, but, is it reasonable to expect similar sharpness, like your samples above, once a 1.4x is added? I know a 2x would probably degrade considerably and I know nothing of the 1.7x.
 
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Keep practicing son, you'll master it someday! ;c)

Really nice work Frank, but aren't the last two Mallards a repeat?
 
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Kevin Scott said:
Sorry for another question, but, is it reasonable to expect similar sharpness, like your samples above, once a 1.4x is added? I know a 2x would probably degrade considerably and I know nothing of the 1.7x.
Kevin,

I don't mind at all. I think that the 300 2.8 with the 1.4 TC is very sharp. It is actually my favorite combination. I was just frustrated with my lack of results from yesterday (missed a bunch of good shots because I just didn't get on the bird quickly and solidly enough), so I took the TC off and shot wide open.

With the 1.7 TC, the lens is still pretty sharp, although I think not quite as sharp as wide open and with the 1.4. It is noticeably softer with the 2.0, but some of that is probably due to lens shake, not optics. I have gotten some pretty decent flight shots with the 300 and the 2.0. It is very, very hard to locate and lock on a bird at that focal length though, at least for me.
 
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Re: Keep practicing son, you'll master it someday! ;c)

Steve S said:
Really nice work Frank, but aren't the last two Mallards a repeat?
Steve,

Looks a little like one, but no, just a damn fast camera. 8).

Look at the color of the water on the two shots.

Thanks,
 
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hillrg said:
Really good stuff Frank. No nits what-so-ever! You sure are nailing the exposures :)
Coming from you Rory, that is a real compliment. 8)

Actually, next to getting the blasted things locked on and in focus, exposure has been my biggest problem. I was actually impressed myself with the shots I got this morning. :lol:

Probably go back to my old ways tomorrow. :?
 
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Those came out good Frank. Were you in A priority mode? And what aperature were you using?

I got a few decent ones, but not that good. I'll try to get mine up tonight or tomorrow.

I enjoyed meeting you and Fred this morning. Now, if we could only convince the Almighty to change the 'golden hour' and bird activity peak to about 2 in the afternoon.
 
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cknight said:
Those came out good Frank. Were you in A priority mode? And what aperature were you using?

I got a few decent ones, but not that good. I'll try to get mine up tonight or tomorrow.

I enjoyed meeting you and Fred this morning. Now, if we could only convince the Almighty to change the 'golden hour' and bird activity peak to about 2 in the afternoon.
Chris,

It was very nice meeting you too. I'll be back out there in the morning at about the same time if you are interested. I've got to get the shutter finger in shape for Merritt. 8)

Yes, I was shooting A mode. I was at f/7.1 for the Goose shots. Don't recall on the Mallard, but it was earlier so I was probably at about 5.6 or so.

I actually like getting out there early, before all the crowds show up. See you in the morning? :lol:
 
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