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Subject: "Big glass small body?" Previous topic | Next topic
John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Fri 07-Sep-12 11:59 AM
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"Big glass small body?"



Just curious, if I decide to go for some large glass what considerations does one need to think of as for carrying, holding etc. my D3200 is very small and I worry that a very large lens hanging from the body would cause some damage over time? Do you keep some kind of bar attached to the lens and body at all times even hand held or do you use some kind of camera lens strap rather then the camera body strap to haul it around. I would be using this off had more then not. I am considering something like the Tamron 200-500. Need to do a bit more saving and research to get a grip on its quality compared to the other big names. I would prefer a big Nikkor but haven't seen it's price yet. Just assuming it is high, for the time being. Thanks Bertotti

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Subject Author Message Date ID
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
07th Sep 2012
1
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
08th Sep 2012
2
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
08th Sep 2012
3
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
08th Sep 2012
4
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? JackJohnson
08th Sep 2012
5
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
08th Sep 2012
6
          Reply message RE: Big glass small body? MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas
08th Sep 2012
7
               Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
08th Sep 2012
8
                    Reply message RE: Big glass small body? JackJohnson
09th Sep 2012
9
                         Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
09th Sep 2012
10
                         Reply message RE: Big glass small body? MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas
09th Sep 2012
11
                         Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
09th Sep 2012
12
                              Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
09th Sep 2012
13
                              Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
10th Sep 2012
14
                                   Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
10th Sep 2012
16
                              Reply message RE: Big glass small body? JackJohnson
10th Sep 2012
15
                              Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
10th Sep 2012
17
                                   Reply message RE: Big glass small body? jesse101 Silver Member
11th Sep 2012
18
                                        Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
12th Sep 2012
19
                                             Reply message RE: Big glass small body? jesse101 Silver Member
13th Sep 2012
20
                                             Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
13th Sep 2012
21
                              Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
24th Oct 2012
36
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? MotoMannequin Moderator Awarded for his extraordinary skills in landscape and wildlife photography
14th Sep 2012
22
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
14th Sep 2012
23
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? JackJohnson
26th Sep 2012
24
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
26th Sep 2012
25
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
26th Sep 2012
26
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
26th Sep 2012
27
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
26th Sep 2012
29
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
26th Sep 2012
28
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas
26th Sep 2012
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     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? liath
23rd Oct 2012
31
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Lighter
24th Oct 2012
32
Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
24th Oct 2012
33
     Reply message RE: Big glass small body? jesse101 Silver Member
24th Oct 2012
34
          Reply message RE: Big glass small body? John Bertotti Gold Member
24th Oct 2012
35
          Reply message RE: Big glass small body? Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography
25th Oct 2012
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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Fri 07-Sep-12 12:18 PM
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#1. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 0



Totally a non-problem. For one thing, the lens mount is the same from the bottom model to the top. So if the lens mount works on a D4 or D800, it's fine on a D40 or D3100. Next for a large lens, one doesn't hold the camera and let the lens cantilever out in space, you support the lens. That's why most larger lenses have a tripod socket right on the lens. After a while, the tail wags the dog!

> I am considering something like the Tamron 200-500.

Unless they've recently upgraded this lens, it won't AF on your camera. It also doesn't have VR or similar, making it relatively difficult to get quality results, at least for non-tripod users and especially users who are new to long lenses. It's a fine optic, but there's more to quality than optics.

> I would prefer a big Nikkor but haven't seen it's price yet.

The closest analogous Nikkor is the 80-400/f4-5.6 AF D VR, which also does not AF on your camera. It goes for about $1500 these days. It also has a reputation as a very slow focuser, even slower than the Tamron (which is also not quick).

Frankly Nikon isn't very competitive in this space. Consider the Sigma 150-500/f4.5-6.3 HSM OS, which does AF on all bodies, has a slightly better OS implementation (relative to the Nikkor's early VR) and which costs about $1000.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sat 08-Sep-12 01:54 AM
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#2. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 1



Thanks Brian, yeah was wondering, the D 3200 is such a small body I didn't know just what it would handle. I will check the sigma and recheck the Tamron because I thought it was redone to AF and vr now. Certainly would like auto focus with one good eye and it is only good up close, auto focus has been a dream for me. Thanks again, Bertotti.

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Sat 08-Sep-12 02:28 AM
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#3. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 2



> Tamron because I thought it was redone to AF and vr now.

The current Tamron USA web site doesn't say "internal motor" and it certainly makes no reference to VC (Tamron's equivalent to VR).

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sat 08-Sep-12 02:49 AM
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#4. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 3



I was mixing up lenses, ever look at an read about so many lenses that they all start to blur together? I have! Doh!

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JackJohnson   US  Registered since 04th Jan 2012 Sat 08-Sep-12 03:10 AM
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#5. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 1



>The closest analogous Nikkor is the 80-400/f4-5.6 AF D VR,
>which also does not AF on your camera. It goes for about
>$1500 these days. It also has a reputation as a very slow
>focuser, even slower than the Tamron (which is also not
>quick).


What about the Nikkor 200-400mmm f/4?

http://www.nikonusa.com/Nikon-Products/Product-Archive/Camera-Lenses/2146/AF-S-VR-Zoom-NIKKOR-200-400mm-f%252F4G-IF-ED.html

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sat 08-Sep-12 03:55 AM
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#6. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 5
Sat 08-Sep-12 01:43 PM by John Bertotti


Love it but it is way beyond my budget.


Edit to add 1500 isn't to bad when I googled it said on the Nikon site it was about 5k. Maybe I looked at the wrong lens. I will recheck and look at some retailers. MSRP is never the same as reality. Thanks!

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MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas   US  Nikonian since 24th Dec 2007 Sat 08-Sep-12 03:52 PM
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#7. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 6



Hi John,

While the Nikkor AF 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D ED VR retails for about $1500.00 for a Grey Market lens and $1679.00 for one imported by Nikon USA, the fact remains that the lens will not Autofocus on your D3200 since it has a screwdriver type AF drive that requires a focusing motor in the camera body to drive.

The 200-400mm f/4G ED IF AF-S VR II retails for $6,749.00 new and even the discontinued VR versions are selling for about $4000.00 to $5000.00 used.

As Brian mentioned above, the Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 DG APO OS HSM is priced at $1069.00 brand new and it is fully supported by the D3200.
Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!

Best Regards,
Marty

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sat 08-Sep-12 08:01 PM
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#8. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 7
Mon 10-Sep-12 08:36 AM by John Bertotti


Yea the price I saw was for that vr nikkor used. I'll have to look into the sigma much closer. I'm sure I'll find some pictures taken with it around here somewhere.
Thanks!

Edited to correct br to vr.

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JackJohnson   US  Registered since 04th Jan 2012 Sun 09-Sep-12 02:07 AM
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#9. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 8



Hi,

The 200-400mm f/4 is very expensive. But, one of the alternatives you mentioned appeared to be a good idea, the 80-400/f4-5.6 AF D VR.

I've owned non-Nikon lenses but I learned it's better to wait until you can save enough to get the Nikkor lens.

Also, have you considered upgrading your body to a D7000 which costs about $999? That will solve your problem with the the 80-400/f4-5.6 AF D VR or any other screw-type auto focus lens.

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sun 09-Sep-12 02:20 AM
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#10. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 9



I'm addicted to the high Rez of the 24 mp D3200! I have to be much more careful now like when I was using my Richo kr30 or Pentax k1000, oh so long ago now. I will say if they come out with a pro type DX body with the rez of mine I will probably jump on it. Come on D7200 or D8000! Hey I can dream right!

As for the expensive vr2 Nikkor, I can't see my self saving for it. I do more family and portrait type shooting then wildlife, although I have more fun with wildlife and kids sports. I should look into a bigger prime then my 35 mm but should and wills aren't always the same thing for me! Hahhaha maybe someplace around here has a sigma from rent to see if it would work for me. Thanks!

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MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas   US  Nikonian since 24th Dec 2007 Sun 09-Sep-12 03:32 AM
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#11. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 10



Hi John,


>maybe someplace around here has a sigma from rent to see if it
>would work for me.

Check www.lensrentals.com and www.borrowlenses.com
Both have excellent service, so you can't go wrong with either one.
Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!

Best Regards,
Marty

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Sun 09-Sep-12 11:26 AM
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#12. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 9



> I've owned non-Nikon lenses but I learned it's better to wait until you can save enough to get the Nikkor lens.

Obviously that works for you, but it's a pretty limiting viewpoint. As a trivial example, consider the Zeiss 25/f2 or 100/f2 - think those are worse than the equivalent Nikkors? Even for other vendors, there are plenty of counterexamples. The 80-400 is a great example. Compared to the Sigma 150-500, it's 100mm shorter, focuses at probably less than half the speed, costs $600 more, and the Nikkor does not outperform the third party lens optically. In addition to not having as good a VR implementation, and not able to AF on most of the current cameras. The suggestion to upgrade the camera to preserve AF adds at least $600 to the already excessive price. It makes no sense other than to have Nikon on the lens cap. Would I recommend the 150-500 to a sports pro? No. But in that case, I wouldn't recommend the 80-400VR, either.

How about the 8/3.5 Sigma? It's clearly outperformed by the closest equivalent Nikkor, yet I'd still recommend it. Strongly. Why? The Nikkor is the 8/f2.8 AIS, which is not only sharper but is also a half-stop faster. But it's discontinued, hard to find, while the Sigma is trivially available. When you do locate one of the Nikkors, it's triple the price. Did I mention that the Nikkor is FOUR times the weight and FIVE times the volume in the bag? In addition to being an AF lens compared to manual focus and non-cpu? For most of us, a fisheye - let alone a circular fisheye - is not the lens that should consume an additional $1500.

Let's take a look at the Sigma 120-300/f2.8 HSM OS. No, it's not the optical equal of the Nikkor 300/f2.8 AFS VR-II. But it's about $1500 less money, weighs about the same, delivers professional-quality optics - and oh by the way, it's a zoom. The closest equivalent Nikkor... doesn't really exist.

The Nikkor 200/f4 AFD Micro-Nikkor is acknowledged to be pretty much the best macro available in Nikon F mount other than the Coastal Optics 60/f4 (oops, sorry, another third party lens, although it happens to be the reference standard). Yet I'd be pretty surprised if I give you 50 24x36" prints and you could do much better than 50% distinguishing the 200/f4 from, say, the Tamron 180/f3.5 Macro.

I'm not a Sigma fanboy, even though I own not one Sigma but five. By a wide majority, most of my lenses are Nikkors, and I certainly like them. But having owned 50+ lenses and used probably another 30+ over the years, my experience tells me that it's best to evaluate each lens and even each situation individually.

Here's a series of images I posted a few months ago:

Which of the following come from third party lenses?





















Which of these ten came from a third party lens?

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Sun 09-Sep-12 12:00 PM
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#13. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 12



Wow that vice and tools pic on the stump is most excellent! I'm biased I love tools and stumps. Actually those are all great shots! Thanks hope you post you lenes at some point. Later Bertotti

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Mon 10-Sep-12 03:56 AM
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#14. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 13



Quotes from my previous threads on this topic:

No, they aren't all from 3rd party lenses. The point is stronger than that. In fact, #2 is the 105/f2.8 Micro Nikkor, #4 is the 80-200/f2.8 AFS Nikkor, and #9 is the 70-200/f2.8 AFS VR-I Nikkor, all pro-grade Nikon lenses. None of these are regarded as poor, mediocre or even merely good. They're all excellent, in the typical Internet opinion. Yet I don't think any of the 3rd party shots here look out of place mixed in with the pro Nikkors.

All of the shots are from different lenses, some Sigmas and some Tamrons. I don't own any Zeiss so I didn't include one, and I couldn't find one of my Tokina lenses when I did the post or I'd have included one of those too. Admittedly nearly all of these are pro-level Sigmas or SP-level Tamrons, but indeed not all of them are. I didn't just pick a few of the best. I have thousands of files from 3rd party lenses, and in fact with only a couple of exceptions I picked ones I had not previously shown here. (And "thousands" is not an exaggeration. I have something like 8000 from the Sigma 50-500 alone, at least 4500 from the Tamron 500/f8, and in the vicinity of 2500 from the Tamron 90/f2.8.)


and

Key:

1. Sigma 50-500f/4-6.3 EX HSM (the non-OS version).
2. Nikon 105/f2.8 AFD Micro-Nikkor
3. Tamron 90/f2.8 AFD Macro
4. Nikon 80-200/f2.8 AFS
5. Sigma 15/f2.8 AFD rectangular fisheye
6. Tamron 500/f8 SP Adaptall-2 Reflex
7. Sigma 10-20/f4-5.6 EX HSM DX
8. Sigma 8/f4 AFD circular fisheye
9. Nikon 70-200/f28 AFS VR-I
10. Sigma 12-24/f4-5.6 EX HSM Mark I

Why did I pick these? The 3rd party ones are simply ones that I've owned, and most of them I still own.

The point of this is that the third party lenses are capable of some pretty good results, and with the three professional Nikon lenses thrown in there, they definitely do not look out of place. If we look at all of these files at 100%, can we tell the difference? Oh sure. But mostly not because of the lenses - these were shot on a variety of bodies, and that makes much more of a difference than the lenses in these cases. Some of the comparisons, for example #2 and #3, are so close that on the same sensor I pretty much can't tell them apart from the pixels, and to the degree that I would pick one, it'd be #3 rather than #2. Others, such as #5 vs the Nikon equivalent are visually identical even at 100%, or so close as to be inspecting pixels solely for the purpose of distinguishing the lenses.

_____
Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member

My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!

  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Mon 10-Sep-12 08:34 AM
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#16. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 14



Thanks for this response. Bein new to Nikon I figured using Nikon with Nikon would be the best. I see that that isn't exactly the case. The sigma looks more promising then ever. Later Bertotti

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JackJohnson   US  Registered since 04th Jan 2012 Mon 10-Sep-12 04:44 AM
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#15. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 12



BLW,

I don't need to own 50 lenses to realize that there is no absolute best lens manufacturer. Many companies make quality lens.

If you didn't notice, I was offering a potential solution based on my personal experience without the benefit of owning 50 lenses. My original comment mentioned the Nikkor 200-400mm f/4 which is too expensive for the OP. The OP mentioned that he would prefer a Nikkor lens. Did you even read the previous posts?

I've owned a Sigma lens, and it wasn't the same quality as the equivalent Nikkor lens. I've owned a Velbon tripod. It's not the same quality as a Gitzo, there is no comparison.

Neither of those comparisons signifies that you can't take good photos with any brand of equipment.

You mentioned Zeiss. I don't understand your logic. First, you mention expensive manual focus lenses and then you mention "the already excessive price" of the 80-400. ???

Anything I write in this forum is based on my experiences. I offered the OP an alternative to consider while he makes a decision. Only the OP knows his long-term photographic goals. There is no right or wrong answer based on the original statement.

I'm not sure why you responded the way you did but it serves no purpose. As I already mentioned, it's possible to take good photos with any make of gear.

That's what's important.



  

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Mon 10-Sep-12 08:46 AM
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#17. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 15



I appreciate the input and suggestions! I also like it when people post more information then I seem to have asked. BLW has responded to several of my newb posts, I can't answer to why anyone responds as they do but from a novices point of view it is very helpful when people really elaborate but I appreciate all responses from the concise ones to the longer ones it all helps thanks! Bertotti

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jesse101 Silver Member  Great Falls, US  Nikonian since 28th Dec 2011 Tue 11-Sep-12 09:31 PM
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#18. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 17
Tue 11-Sep-12 09:45 PM by jesse101


I too have not owned a lot of lenses, but the few that i currently own, to include a Tamron, i would agree that there is great glass outside of Nikon. My new Tamron has been great so far, (28-75mm 2.8) Im actually dead impressed with this lens. Many have mentioned that the Nikkor 50mm prime lens can do what this lens does and it wasnt worth purchasing, i would have to gracefully disagree. Now can the Nikon 24-75mm out perform this Tamron? i am sure it can, but it also triples in cost (to be conservative). I am extremely happy with this lens. here are some recent photos that i have taken with this lens and my D3100, granted i still need to get use to this lens coupled to my 3100, but i have to admit, its probably the best lens i currently own (55-300, 18-55, 50mm).

http://www.flickr.com/photos/73141335@N06/7959452182/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/73141335@N06/7935161168/

Again, my experience using such lenses is a fraction to what you guys have used, but i am still impressed with this lens, or i could simply be blinded by not having the experience. either way, i still feel i made the right choice considering the amount of gear i was able to purchase instead of just purchasing one lens.

Now do i wish to own the Nikon 24-75 2.8? yes! lol i would like to own one to just simply compare to the Tamron..keep reading reviews for comparisons, but curiosity takes over.

My Gallery:

http://jessemartinez.zenfolio.com

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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Wed 12-Sep-12 09:41 PM
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#19. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 18



Jesse, I'm very hard on lenses with regard to reviews. That being said, while there are some obvious clinkers out there, much of the time, the difference between similar lenses of the top manufacturers is nitpicking. Yet, although it's nitpicking, the differences are real. But then again, whether or not the differences are important to any particular photographer is a matter of degree, how it affects the photographer's work and style of work, and budget justification, etc. Moreover, characteristics of lenses which are important to me, may be, and often are, different for others.

I know when I'm giving advice on lenses, I'll characterize the differences I've found and let each individual judge from there.

Now that I've said all that, I've found, with some exceptions, that you can't go wrong purchasing Nikkor lenses, yet I do own some Sigma lenses myself and use a Sigma 15mm f/2.8 EX DG AF Diagonal Fisheye as my sole lens of that type.

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

-----------------------------
Visit my Travel Photography Blog and my Galleries.

  

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jesse101 Silver Member  Great Falls, US  Nikonian since 28th Dec 2011 Thu 13-Sep-12 03:12 AM
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#20. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 19



that makes sense. and like i said, i have minimal experience in comparison to most of you, which is why i would come on here and ask for advice when looking for a specific lens or something similar. But i can see "nitpicking" actually being crucial, especially when purchasing something long term.

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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Thu 13-Sep-12 03:27 AM
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#21. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 20



"But i can see "nitpicking" actually being crucial, especially when purchasing something long term," or something as expensive as some lenses.

I went through lots of research, and lots of discussion here at Nikonians myself, for example, before plunging the bucks for the Nikkor 500mm f/4 VRII I purchased a while back.

Ned
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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Wed 24-Oct-12 01:25 PM
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#36. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 12



Brian I am still enjoying #2, I can see it printed on a tin with a caption something like,

"Heaven it's all in you're point of view"

A little off topic but at some point next year we need to talk, I can see just that in a work shop I will be building.

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MotoMannequin Moderator Awarded for his extraordinary skills in landscape and wildlife photography   Livermore, CA, US  Nikonian since 11th Jan 2006 Fri 14-Sep-12 12:03 AM
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#22. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 0
Fri 14-Sep-12 12:03 AM by MotoMannequin


Let me add a few things:

Brian (blw) is correct that the lens mount is basically the same strength across the line, so the size of your camera really has no bearing, BUT that leaves off the important point that you don't want the mount to support a large lens on any camera body.

When using the lens, you support it by left hand under the lens. If carrying by a strap, you should use a strap attached to the lens foot, so the lens mount therefore supports the weight of the camera body only, not the lens. Ditto for working on a tripod, the lens foot is locked into the tripod, and the mount supports the weight of the camera body, not the lens.

As to your comment about "waiting for Nikon" let me tell you a little story...

I waited for years for Nikon to update their slow-to-focus 80-400 VR. This lens seemed overdue in late 2006, when Nikon introduced the 70-300VR. I bought that 70-300 VR in Spring 2007, thinking it would be a temporary stopgap until the new 80-400 came out. You read that right, the 80-400 replacement was considered overdue 6 years ago. I shot with the 70-300 for a few years until Sigma introduced their OS/HSM 150-500. I bought this lens in 2009 and decided waiting for Nikon, enough is enough. Both my 150-500 and 70-300 were stolen in a house break-in in late 2010. Once I got insurance payoff, in December 2010, I went back to waiting for Nikon mode, until some time in 2011 I said enough is enough again, and bought another copy of the Sigma 150-500. Had I decided to wait for Nikon, here in late 2012 I'd still be waiting.

So, is it worth waiting for Nikon to make an affordable super-tele? Only if you don't mind never taking pictures, ever again then you should be happy waiting.

Nikon doesn't deserve your or anybody's business in this price bracket.

Yes I'm a little bitter about it.

Thanks to Sigma for covering us here.

Larry - a Bay Area Nikonian
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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Fri 14-Sep-12 02:36 PM
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#23. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 22



Larry, I've always found that waiting for Nikon is very problematical, even when you're on the NPS list. And if you're waiting for an unannounced lens, unless it's a desirable but not particularly needed lens, it's virtually useless to wait, as there is no telling when, as, and if the lens will be coming out.

I would love an 80-400 replacement lens too. It's a great range for me. While my D4 has given the 80-400 a new lease on life by getting the lens to focus a whole lot faster with almost no hunting (hence the speed), it's still a far cry from an AFS version, plus I'd like to see better optical performance at the long end.

Unfortunately, this lens like many others awaiting replacement over the years has kept getting pushed back, for a variety of reasons about which we can only speculate. There was a new patent filing for the lens in 2010. Everyone thought it would be soon coming, but, as we know, it's still a no show. By the way, this June, Nikon filed a new patent for an 80-400 lens, so possibly, it's going to finally come out somewhat soon.

I fully understand when folks get angry and upset with Nikon when they release a new product, but don't anticipate the demand accurately, and force those who placed orders to wait, and wait, and wait. That's really grossly unfair. The D4 is an example of that. It took about 7 months for Nikon USA to fulfill everyone's pre-order. Not good!

On the other hand, while I get upset over problems like the D4, I don't get upset by a lack of lens replacement for any particular lens which Nikon never said was being replaced. There just aren't guarantees about the life cycle and replacement of any Nikon product. There's a lot we don't know about replacement factors: design, materials, manufacturing, demand. To me personally, I don't believe Nikon owes us anything in the way of equipment, based on our perception of their product line, even when we're right, as they get to make those decisions.

When they can't produce what they announced (D4), or when they don't make good on defects (D800), that's another story and I'm ready to hold Nikon's feet to the fire over those kind of problems.

Best regards,

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

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JackJohnson   US  Registered since 04th Jan 2012 Wed 26-Sep-12 03:46 AM
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#24. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 0



Hi,

Here's something else to consider especially for those who recommended Sigma lenses.

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/09/lensrentals-repair-data-january-july-2012

Good luck.

  

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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Wed 26-Sep-12 09:00 AM
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#25. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 24



It's interesting that you cite that particular page about Sigma. Yes, it says that the two least reliable lenses that Lens Rentals has are Sigmas. The worst offender - the Sigma 120-300/f2.8 HSM OS - is almost 10x less reliable than the standard. Sounds horrible, right? It also shows two Nikkors in the five least reliable, and they aren't much ahead of one of the Sigmas. And one of them is the vaunted 70-200 VR-II. Roger also noted in the review I think the other trend that’s very obvious is that large, f/2.8 zoom lenses are likely to have issues. He said that without constraining to brand, since Nikon, Canon, Sigma and Sony (at least) were on that list.

It's also worth observing one thing that Roger didn't explicitly call out, which is that there are roughly 15 Sigma lenses that LR offers that did not make the list of unreliable gear, for one reason or another. (There were also something on the order of 25 Nikkors.)

In the same article it's worth looking at the repair incidence details - where Nikon is cited as being the highest cost as well as having a turnaround time almost three times that of Sigma's and approaching 9x that of Tamron's. Note the comments on Tamron's highly user-favorable repair policy, and about Sigma's dramatic improvement in repair management over the past five yeare. And also the fact that LR simply won't use Tokina's warranty/repair service, since it was so bad in the past.

I encourage everyone to read the article. There are multiple explanations as to what the data means and does not mean. Roger Cicala is a very even-handed guy.

_____
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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Wed 26-Sep-12 10:23 AM
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#26. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 25



Brian, based on my long term experience with Nikon (I've been shooting with Nikon equipment for 49 years.), and my experience with them in the last 5-10 years, as well as my experience in the last 5-10 years with Sigma, I'd have to say that Roger Cicala's article, at least with regard to Nikon and Sigma is on target. Several friends' experience with Tokina would seem to validate his comments about them as well.

I also agree with Cicala when he said, "A given lens would have a far lower repair rate owned by someone who uses it on weekends, takes good care of it, and doesn’t ship it around the country." When I did more event work and had to ship my equipment in Pelican cases by FedEx and UPS, it saw the repair shop with some regularity. Now that shipping my equipment is rare, and it normally comes with me when I travel and is carefully taken care of by me directly during transit, repairs are almost rare.

In conjunction with the above statement he also said, "These are heavily used, frequently shipped lenses." That must be taken into account when you are looking at the numbers absolutely, as opposed to looking at the numbers as trends, and digging deeper to see what the problems with the lenses have been, which he ably details. When I've seen people use lenses they've rented, I see them treat those lenses with far less care than their own.

For example, I was in the Sinai Desert last fall for an extended period of time. I was traveling in a small group and one of the group had rented a couple of lenses for the trip. One day when the winds were fairly high, I covered my camera/lenses with a Think Tank Hydrophobia to keep the sand from constantly blowing onto my equipment. Based on how dirty I was from the sand hitting me for hours, I believe that was a smart move. The lens renter also had a TT hydrophobia with him, and used it when it was pouring when we were in Haifa. I suggested he might want to follow my lead in the Sinai, as the D700 he was using was his, but he declined indicating the lens was a rental. I don't think his example is an aberration.

In particular, I agree with Cicala concerning Nikon USA and their repair centers. Their charges and their turn around rate are generally abysmal even for NPS members. I continue to be upset that Nikon won't sell parts to 3rd party repair shops for out of warranty work. I had a great shop near me which turned around my equipment in 1-3 days if they had the parts in stock.

One final note, Cicala mentioned the problem with the foot of the Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 VR II. I don't know how many here have encountered the problem. I certainly did, early on. I had it replaced. I had used it solely in my monopod, not my tripod at that point. Since I use RRS gear, I decided to replace the foot with a RRS foot. I've never had a bent foot since.

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Wed 26-Sep-12 11:11 AM
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#27. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 26



I have never understood why people would treat someone else's heat with so little regard, one reason I am so cautious about who I lend stuff to!

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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Wed 26-Sep-12 03:37 PM
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#29. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 27



I have my opinion on why, but that's for another thread.

As to borrowing my equipment, there are only two people to whom I now lend equipment, as I've been burnt twice by "good" friends, who did pick up the repair tab, but who were careless, which got them in trouble. Fortunately, I only lent out lenses of which I had a duplicate, and a second backup camera. Now I'll only lend equipment to my daughter in law whose landscapes are pure artistry, and my younger son, whose street portraits are often breath-taking. While neither are professionals, both could easily be pros and both have had one person shows several times. Moreover, they treat my equipment like it's their own.

Ned
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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Wed 26-Sep-12 12:33 PM
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#28. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 26



I have a lot of time for Roger's opinions - or, should I say, his comments, since most of what he provides is not an opinion but data. And he has little tolerance for what he calls "fanboys." Of any stripe.

I'm not real happy with Nikon's repair either. Just look at their policies: all equipment is assumed to be grey market until you prove otherwise. Which means that they won't touch it until you provide proof - even though they are in possession of the list of serial numbers that they themselves imported into the US. I am borderline paranoid / OCD when it comes to Nikon receipts, so I personally can provide that stuff on an instantaneous basis even if I am out of the country (all of those receipts, with serial numbers) are scanned and on my phone/tablet/laptop and the original is accessible to me via the Internet - I did say I was OCD about this). But most folks aren't, despite the fact that I'd guess that well over 95% of what Nikon receive is within their bounds.

Compare that with Sigma's behavior. In at least three cases that I know of (one of mine, two of a Nikonian pro), actual Sigma grey market lenses were serviced without comment under warranty. In my own case, I even provided the receipt clearly showing that it was a grey market import! OK, small sample size, but I have a much bigger sample size with Nikon repairs (that should say something right there!) and certainly I have much more hassle with Nikon on that front.

And I'll emphasize what Roger said about Tamron: they guarantee repair within 3 days, or they replace it. Hey Nikon, are you listening? Yeah, you, the guys who keep my stuff for a month when it has to go back. Now I have to admit that I simply did not know this about Tamron's repair policy. Why? Because I've never had a Tamron need a repair. In 29 years. Certainly that is a smaller sample than I have with Sigma (only 7 years) or Nikon (also 29 years, but over much more equipment), but 0-for-decades can't be a really bad indication, either. Notice that Roger doesn't even give Tamron repair cost data - since he's never paid for any.

As far as Roger's list goes, here's how I'd use it:

- I'd avoid the first-generation Sigma 120-300 HSM OS. If I needed that lens, I'd go for either the previous non-OS version with a later serial number, or the latest edition of the OS model to which he referred. As an aside, reading Roger's earlier commentary on reliability data, the 120-300 was unreliable years ago, became reliable, and now has suffered another setback.

- I'd take the 70-200 VR-II under advisement, and in particular I'd do to it as I have done with my VR-I and replace the foot. (In my case I have a Kirk foot, but RRS is equivalent and surely both are better than the problematic Nikon one.)

- If I had the 50-500 OS (#2 on Roger's list, or next-to-last if you care to interpret it that way), I'd go out of my way to treat it carefully.

And for a Nikon owner, that's about all I'd do. I wouldn't avoid the 50-500 OS - there isn't a mass movement away from the 70-200 VR-II, and the Bigma is only 7% more problematic. (The average failure across all of LR's gear is 155 weeks, the Bigma is 43 and the VR-II is 53, which are 27% of average and 34% of average, respectively.)

_____
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blw Moderator Awarded for his high level of expertise in various areas   Richmond, US  Nikonian since 18th Jun 2004 Wed 26-Sep-12 11:07 PM
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#30. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 24



> Here's something else to consider especially for those who recommended Sigma lenses.

Jack didn't refer to the earlier 2011 data, but that previous article can be found here. And here's an excerpt from that article:

Fanboys love to misuse the list above, and one of the common things I’ve seen is,“Brand X has the most (or least) lenses on Lensrentals’ high repair rate list.”

And here's another one:

During the year I will see this data pop up on various forums, often for the purposes of bashing Sigma lenses. Those who do that are painting with too broad of a brush. Yes, Sigma supertelephoto zooms have reliability problems. The current versions fail, the previous versions failed. But what nobody seems to notice is that the other Sigma lenses NEVER end up on this list. From a reliability standpoint the Sigma wide zooms and primes are extremely reliable.

Now I didn't make this up, and I didn't put words in Roger's mouth. Those are the words of the cited author.

_____
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liath   US  Registered since 26th Sep 2012 Tue 23-Oct-12 11:10 PM
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#31. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 30
Tue 23-Oct-12 11:15 PM by liath


.............In the name of responding to the original question!!

I recently picked up a used Sigma 400mm, I will reaffirm that trying to carry it strapped around my neck attached to my D90 was a no-go. But easily resolved with padded holster that fits the lens and body nicely. For short forays, I carry lens and body attached to a monopod; great for small birds and insects.

  

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Lighter   Calcutta, IN  Registered since 16th Feb 2012 Wed 24-Oct-12 05:51 AM
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#32. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 0
Wed 24-Oct-12 05:55 AM by Lighter


In response to the original question of the OP......

May I suggest that you try a good prime lens from Nikkor and with that a 1.4x Nikkor TC?
I had a long discussion about this in this forum as well as other fora. And at the end I settled for Nikkor AF-S 300mm f/4 IF-ED lens. It's not pricey, not very big but tremendous optical quality. I have tried this lens wide open and than also the optical quality remains the same. With it, if you attach a 1.4x Nikkor TC, that would give you 420mm reach (about 630mm on your Dx body). The combo will be f/5.6, but still you can use it wide open without any loss of IQ.

On VR: IMHO, rather a hyped feature. If you are using Shutter speed > 1/500, you should always turn the VR off, otherwise you are going to have a detrimental effect on IQ as well as focusing capability. I am not saying it is an useless feature, rather far from that, though it is not as essential as some might tend to believe.

If you are using a fast lens like the one I mentioned above the following benefit you can get:
1. Pretty high Shutter speed even at moderate light, enough to handhold the lens.
2. The contrast and resolution will be far superior than the zoom lenses mentioned here.
3. Even if you crop and then upsize, there would be much less loss of quality.

Regarding Sigma 150-500, I would not suggest it. It is very slow and the IQ really drops after 400mm even if you stop it down to f/8. Throughout the zoom range, the lens could not satisfy me with the aperture wide open. If you are inclined to Super Zooms, I would suggest Nikkor 200-400. If you do not have that budget then Sigma 50-500 would be a much better choice over 150-500.

And at the end, there would be no problem whatsoever with a big lens on a small body of yours.

Hope this helps.

http://500px.com/sriroyc
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sroyc/
My gear: D90, AF-S 300 f4, AF-S 18-55 VR, Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Macro

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Wed 24-Oct-12 12:55 PM
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#33. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 32
Wed 24-Oct-12 01:01 PM by John Bertotti


I still haven't decided what I will do. I love wide photography. But really want something that will get me close to th kids in their school functions and fast enough for their ball games and sports. Here are my thoughts. Since their programs are always in a gym and sports so far outside I figured if I only want one lens for this then the 70-200vrii would do the trick. Fairly fast and from what I have read good for the indoor shots as well. Then new body, we are talking next year. I love my D3200 and won't get rid of it but a bit better high iOS for indoors would be nice and some of the extra controls, built in intervals meter, bracketing, HDR, etc would be a big fun plus. What I need is to capture my kids they are growing so fast, what I want is landscapes, skyscapes, and maybe even some night skies. But my immediate concern is kids because those opportunities will not last forever. So unless someone has a better suggestion I think it will be the 70-200 vrii. I haven't even picked up a flash I planned on, sb910, I was thinking for the gym stuff the faster 70-200 would be more beneficial. Would that big flash help me much in a gym. I do have the DX 55-200 now? Thanks everyone! Happy Halloween! Yea I'm still a bit early but what the heck!



Edited to add, a bit more reach then 200 would still be nice but my above thoughts seemed like a solid compromise. The 3200 pics do give me some crop room. 300 would be nice but the speed of the 70-200vrii seemed good to me. Anymore thoughts welcome. Heck feel like I'm on a teeter totter bouncing back and forth! Rather annoying actually, so many choices! But at least I narrowed it down to prioritize my kids events first. Around the house and such what I have works great. The 55-200 is ok but better in the gym and faster on the field would be most excellent. Maybe I shouldn't try to combine those to goal.

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jesse101 Silver Member  Great Falls, US  Nikonian since 28th Dec 2011 Wed 24-Oct-12 01:14 PM
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#34. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 33



I recently purchased my 910 and have used it for 2 retirement ceremonies so far, both in terrrrrible lighting conditions, much worst than a school gym. The 910 worked well, however it killed batteries like an old lady at walmart going through a pack of cigs. My 700 doesnt have the same range, but def held its battery power much longer.

I also took pics with that gary fong light diffuser, so i had to up the EV by .3 which very well could have been the culprit, but i had to do the same when shooting with my 700, so battery life is my only gripe, and i can see myself purchasing a battery pack here in the near future instead of relying on rechargable AA's for my 910.

On a side note, i was able to get closer to my subjects over than your setup you will potentially have at the gym, so i am not even sure if the 910 is even an option, as i have yet to use it at an indoor school gym.

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John Bertotti Gold Member  Garretson, US  Nikonian since 01st Jul 2012 Wed 24-Oct-12 01:19 PM
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#35. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 34



"On a side note, i was able to get closer to my subjects over than your setup you will potentially have at the gym, so i am not even sure if the 910 is even an option, as i have yet to use it at an indoor school gym."


That one bit about getting closer is the reason I choose to put it off, but with a program tomorrow I am wondering again of the merit of it but buying it would put the lens off a few months. Not sure I'm willing to do that.

Thanks Bertotti

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Ned_L Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge in various areas, especially Travel Photography   Philadelphia, US  Charter Member Thu 25-Oct-12 01:11 AM
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#37. "RE: Big glass small body?"
In response to Reply # 34



Jesse, more light power, and it's actually a significant difference, uses more electrical power, so less battery life, at full power.

34 m/111.5 ft. (at ISO 100, 35mm zoom head position, in FX format, standard illumination pattern, 20°C/68°F) for the SB-910 vs. 28 m/92 ft. (at ISO 100, 35mm zoom head position, in FX format, standard illumination pattern, 20°C/68°F) for the SB-700.

It's a 21% increase in guide number, but remember, light works by the inverse square law, so it's a lot more power to get that increase.

I use the SD-9 High Performance Battery Pack with my SB-910. It makes a huge difference in performance and battery life.

Ned
A Nikonians Team Member

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