What tele to get?

What tele lens to get?

  • Sigma 50-500mm HSM f4-6.3

    Votes: 4 9.1%
  • Sigma 150-500mm HSM f5-6.3 OS

    Votes: 16 36.4%
  • Tamron 200-500mm f5-6.3

    Votes: 4 9.1%
  • Other

    Votes: 20 45.5%

  • Total voters
    44
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Messages
674
Location
Springfield, OR
Ok so I think the telephoto lens I want is between these lenses. I am planning on getting a good tripod to support it. I already have the 70-300 vr so any of these will get me out to 500mm at f6.3.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
6,530
Location
Rockville, MD
300/2.8 AIS and a 1.4 or 1.7TC and good support. Manual focus and metering though. I'm not a particularly big fan of any of these super-duper zoom lenses, and especially f/6.3 ones. I'd rather go all manual focus and metering to afford better glass, even on a D90 body.
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Messages
674
Location
Springfield, OR
300/2.8 AIS and a 1.4 or 1.7TC and good support. Manual focus and metering though. I'm not a particularly big fan of any of these super-duper zoom lenses, and especially f/6.3 ones. I'd rather go all manual focus and metering to afford better glass, even on a D90 body.
Some people like it, but I prefer autofocus and metering. I guess it's personal preference. Maybe if it was a noct nikkor 1.2:wink:
 
Joined
Jun 23, 2007
Messages
54
Location
Los Angelus, California
300/2.8 AIS and a 1.4 or 1.7TC and good support. Manual focus and metering though. I'm not a particularly big fan of any of these super-duper zoom lenses, and especially f/6.3 ones. I'd rather go all manual focus and metering to afford better glass, even on a D90 body.
Way to go, i agree with you, Speed is important!
 
W

Wileec

Guest
I did some side by side testing and based on that and a whole ton of online research, I chose to go with the Tamron 200-500mm. At the longer focal lengths, I only shoot from a tripod, or some other reliable support. So, that said, the HSM of the Sigma lenses just added complexity I wouldn't be using, but would be paying for. In the online comparison threads I read, the Tamron seemed to be favored over the Sigmas and the Nikon 80-400 (which I did some test shots with, along with the Tamron). Also, I can't deny that the sample variety that many people talk about with Sigma lenses isn't something I wanted to wrangle with. I don't have a local supplier, so it might mean the time and expense of mailing lenses a time or three to get a decent sample. I don't have that kind of time, nor interested in loosing money that way, to get a lens that should ship new in excellent working condition. I've tested and double checked the AF of the Tamron at 500mm and each time it checks out exactly as it should be. All three of my Nikon primes benefited from AF fine tune adjustment, as all three were just a bit off.
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Messages
674
Location
Springfield, OR
I did some side by side testing and based on that and a whole ton of online research, I chose to go with the Tamron 200-500mm. At the longer focal lengths, I only shoot from a tripod, or some other reliable support. So, that said, the HSM of the Sigma lenses just added complexity I wouldn't be using, but would be paying for. In the online comparison threads I read, the Tamron seemed to be favored over the Sigmas and the Nikon 80-400 (which I did some test shots with, along with the Tamron). Also, I can't deny that the sample variety that many people talk about with Sigma lenses isn't something I wanted to wrangle with. I don't have a local supplier, so it might mean the time and expense of mailing lenses a time or three to get a decent sample. I don't have that kind of time, nor interested in loosing money that way, to get a lens that should ship new in excellent working condition. I've tested and double checked the AF of the Tamron at 500mm and each time it checks out exactly as it should be. All three of my Nikon primes benefited from AF fine tune adjustment, as all three were just a bit off.
I buy my equipment used, and the sigma is about the same price as the tamron. I haven't owned a tamron, but I've had a couple sigma lenses, and all of them have been good copies. I always make sure I get a good copy when I buy used. I was taking some shots with my 70-300 vr a few minutes ago, and there are times when you can't use a tripod (even though a tripod will get better results). So the OS would be an added benefit. But like you said before, VR can't replace a tripod.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
6,530
Location
Rockville, MD
Some people like it, but I prefer autofocus and metering. I guess it's personal preference.
So would just about everybody I think. :wink: The point is that if you can forego that stuff you get absolutely top-notch optics at one-fifth or even one-tenth what the modern AF and VR versions go for, and they're actually affordable. Not a whole lot more if anything than any of these lenses. Good luck with whatever you decide on.

Edit:

http://www.keh.com/OnLineStore/Prod...&BC=NK&BCC=1&CC=6&CCC=2&BCL=&GBC=&GCC=&KW=500

500mm f/4 P ED for $1599 BGN at KEH

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


yeah baby! :biggrin: Put a 1.4tc on that and you're at 700mm and still f/5.6.

Would have to do some research. Not sure if it's AI or not, but if I'm not mistaken I thought the "P" on these things means metering coupling? So you'd have metering on your D90 if that's the case.

More on this lens here: http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/companies/nikon/nikkoresources/telephotos/500mm.htm

Not surprisingly there's a photo of a small bird used as an example. Yes, the "P" means you'll get matrix metering coupling. :wink:
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2008
Messages
674
Location
Springfield, OR
So would just about everybody I think. :wink: The point is that if you can forego that stuff you get absolutely top-notch optics at one-fifth or even one-tenth what the modern AF and VR versions go for, and they're actually affordable. Not a whole lot more if anything than any of these lenses. Good luck with whatever you decide on.

Edit:

http://www.keh.com/OnLineStore/Prod...&BC=NK&BCC=1&CC=6&CCC=2&BCL=&GBC=&GCC=&KW=500

500mm f/4 P ED for $1599 BGN at KEH

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


yeah baby! :biggrin: Put a 1.4tc on that and you're at 700mm and still f/5.6.

Would have to do some research. Not sure if it's AI or not, but if I'm not mistaken I thought the "P" on these things means metering coupling? So you'd have metering on your D90 if that's the case.

More on this lens here: http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/companies/nikon/nikkoresources/telephotos/500mm.htm

Not surprisingly there's a photo of a small bird used as an example. Yes, the "P" means you'll get matrix metering coupling. :wink:
This looks nice! I good live without AF if I had metering and f4 at 500mm! I saw this before, but I didn't realize it could meter. It is actually out of my budget, but it might be worth it to wait.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
6,530
Location
Rockville, MD
This looks nice! I good live without AF if I had metering and f4 at 500mm! I saw this before, but I didn't realize it could meter. It is actually out of my budget, but it might be worth it to wait.
Sell your 70-300vr, 11-16 temporarily, combine it with any other money, and anything else you might have handy that's worth something (your soul, blood plasma :biggrin: ) and this can be yours. :tongue:
 
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
544
Location
Winter Haven, Florida
I will agree with Wileec 100%, as I did the same as he, research wise. Personally, I believe the Tamron is the better of the three, and I will put my 200-500mm up against either of the Sigmas (same photographer). There are other lenses that are better, but at far greater cost. If you have the money, go for it. I am quite happy with my Tamron and it has served me well. I like the idea of the zoom to vary the FL. One can always use the foot zoom, but that's worse than shooting without a tripod.

Also, I shoot exclusively with a tripod, and the only place I haven't used a tripod is in a boat - perhaps I could have tried, but opted to use a 70-300mm (non VR) handheld (and it hurt).

Best wishes on your choice.
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
6,530
Location
Rockville, MD
I'm selling my 11-16 temporarily, but I'm keeping my 70-300 vr-I can't part with it looking over some shots I took today.
Could I get by with a sturdy monopod with this lens?
That's the spirit! :biggrin: You won't have ANY trouble selling it because it's still a highly sought after item and back-ordered in a lot of places. You could also "downgrade" to a lower end body like a D40/D50. I sold my old D80 and shot with just a d40 for awhile to generate the funds I needed to buy a 70-200vr at the time - LOL.

I have no clue what sort of support you might need or could get by with on that beast. I'm guessing a GOOD monopod would do it, but ask in the birding forum. I bet there's somebody there that has shot with the thing before. :wink:
 
W

Wileec

Guest
Before selling focal lengths that I want to have (a poor short term and long term option), I would encourage you to do some real research. With all due respect, the NikonCafe is only one source and not as many people here as some other places. DPreview, Imaging-Resource, and FredMiranda are three of the sites that I found helpful. There were some others (Amazon, B&H, Adorama), and I didn't know about this forum at that time, but it's my opinion there aren't that many people here, so it's too small a pond of users to look to for these kinds of decisions. No offense to anyone here - it's the scientist in me that seeks enough of a sample of shooters to form an opinion.

A monopod can work, and a good one is certainly less than a good tripod, but it all depends on your technique. I've had a harder time trying to make use of a monopod for the longer shots, and sometimes I even use a cable release - I wouldn't have enough hands to handle lens/camera and monopod and remote release.

I would suggest you borrow one, first - you may be surprised at how little movement compromises an image. Unless you have money to burn, read carefully and be smart about your choices. Every lens has pros and caveats, so choose knowing what you want to capture - with a long term plan in mind.
 
Joined
Mar 23, 2008
Messages
3,125
Location
Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A.
Good post. I wouldn't sell any focal length just to buy a different one, either.

And a monopod gets old very fast when you're out shooting wildlife, and small birds! You will find yourself in a lot of situations where you need to wait for some action to happen. In that case, being able to let go of your rig and resting it on a sturdy tripod is important.

Cheers

Mike
 

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