Wildlife lens and body for birds (wildlife) - Z bodies

Joined
Jan 8, 2012
Messages
211
Location
UK - Northwest
Let me preface this by saying that at present I do most of my birding etc on a Micro Four Thirds system (so an EM1X and EM1 MK II and usually with the stellar Olympus 300mm F4 Pro - with or without the 1.4x TC, or if the light is good enough the Panasonic Leica 100-400 F4-6.3). This system is usually very good and has netted me some great images, but as I live in the UK, getting decent enough amounts of light at this time of the year is problematic to say the least. Typically I'm finding that even wide open @ F4, to even get a shutter speed of around 1/125" to 1/200" i'm up around ISO's of 3200-4500.

Now don't get me wrong, there's a lot I love about this system ( and I have extolled it's virtues many times), but at those heady ISO's no matter how good the system is (and it's very good), the images really start to break apart and loose the really fine details. I have therefore been contemplating for several months now perhaps selling off the EM1X and some of my bigger glass to fund the purchase of a longer lens for my Nikon Z system which I also have (I have both the Z6 and Z7). I've done a ton or research and the more I look, the more unsure I become.

My initial feeling was to put the Olympus system towards the new Nikon 500mm F5.6 PF (as it's no too dissimilar in size and weight to the Olympus unit), but at £3k plus, I need to make sure it's definitely right for me. My thoughts were although it wouldn't be as much reach as the current Olympus lens (600mm in 35mm equivalent or 840mm @ F5.6 with the TC), given the 45.4 MP of the Z7, it would give me amble cropping ability. But I've then read that the Z7 when cropped (albeit very good), isn't a match quality wise for something like a Nikon D500 which would obviously achieve 750mm equivalent using all of it's 20mp as it's already a 1.5x APS-C crop camera. I think buying a D500 and the 500mm PF would financially be a step too far for me at the moment, so wanted to ask if any of you are using the new 500 PF on the Z7 (or Z6 for that matter) and are shooting at fairly high ISO's (say 3200 upwards) and can comment on how well the lens and the Z bodies stands up to cropping in. It would have to be at the higher ISO's as up to about ISO 1600 I can achieve excellent to very good image quality on the EM1X combo and really excellent at 800 and below.

Thanks in advanced.
 
Joined
Dec 24, 2005
Messages
1,106
Location
Huntsville, Alabama
I am using it on the Z50, Z6 and the Z7 with and without the Nikon TC-14E III with great results. It also works great with the D500 and D5. Works well at high ISOs and cropping.
 
Joined
Dec 14, 2018
Messages
104
Let me preface this by saying that at present I do most of my birding etc on a Micro Four Thirds system (so an EM1X and EM1 MK II and usually with the stellar Olympus 300mm F4 Pro - with or without the 1.4x TC, or if the light is good enough the Panasonic Leica 100-400 F4-6.3). This system is usually very good and has netted me some great images, but as I live in the UK, getting decent enough amounts of light at this time of the year is problematic to say the least. Typically I'm finding that even wide open @ F4, to even get a shutter speed of around 1/125" to 1/200" i'm up around ISO's of 3200-4500.

Now don't get me wrong, there's a lot I love about this system ( and I have extolled it's virtues many times), but at those heady ISO's no matter how good the system is (and it's very good), the images really start to break apart and loose the really fine details. I have therefore been contemplating for several months now perhaps selling off the EM1X and some of my bigger glass to fund the purchase of a longer lens for my Nikon Z system which I also have (I have both the Z6 and Z7). I've done a ton or research and the more I look, the more unsure I become.

My initial feeling was to put the Olympus system towards the new Nikon 500mm F5.6 PF (as it's no too dissimilar in size and weight to the Olympus unit), but at £3k plus, I need to make sure it's definitely right for me. My thoughts were although it wouldn't be as much reach as the current Olympus lens (600mm in 35mm equivalent or 840mm @ F5.6 with the TC), given the 45.4 MP of the Z7, it would give me amble cropping ability. But I've then read that the Z7 when cropped (albeit very good), isn't a match quality wise for something like a Nikon D500 which would obviously achieve 750mm equivalent using all of it's 20mp as it's already a 1.5x APS-C crop camera. I think buying a D500 and the 500mm PF would financially be a step too far for me at the moment, so wanted to ask if any of you are using the new 500 PF on the Z7 (or Z6 for that matter) and are shooting at fairly high ISO's (say 3200 upwards) and can comment on how well the lens and the Z bodies stands up to cropping in. It would have to be at the higher ISO's as up to about ISO 1600 I can achieve excellent to very good image quality on the EM1X combo and really excellent at 800 and below.

Thanks in advanced.
This guy uses the z50 amongst others with the 500

https://www.flickr.com/photos/128329716@N05/with/49462746927/
 
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
6,115
Location
Upstate SC
The Z7 will offer better crop options (or shooting in crop mode), while you should get slightly better AF and higher iso performance with the Z6. I use a 500/4 AF-Sii that I picked up for $2200. While it’s heavier than the 500/5.6PF, it’s also a stop faster (although with the PFs VR, only the more notable subject isolation would be advantageous with the f4). It’s once you add a teleconvertor that the f5.6 may start to become a problem. The IBIS in the Z6 helps, but it definitely is not as effective as the optical stabilization in a lens.
 
Joined
Oct 24, 2017
Messages
1,266
Location
Dubois, Wyoming
Real Name
Bill
Not a Bird but here's a Z6 500pf shot at iso2500.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Nikon Cafe is a fan site and not associated with Nikon Corporation.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2005-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom