Ok, there might be a little hyperbole here, but someone on dpreview asked why people were buying a D3. I answered that it made my 200-400 f/4 into an f/2 (based on the assumption and approximation that ISO 1600 on the D3 is at least as good as ISO 400 on my D2x). I was then challenged by someone who said that while the f/2 equivalency may be close for exposure, an f/4 lens doesn't match an f/2 in depth-of-field.
That's correct, of course, but I then rolled out the old DOF calculator and discovered that if I shoot a subject 100' away with the 200mm f/2 at f/2 with my D2x, the DOF is about six feet. If I shoot the same subject at the same distance with my 200-400mm (at 300mm) at f/4, the DOF is about eight feet, which is pretty close over a 100' distance.
The 200mm f/2 is a lens I've always lusted over. In all honesty, I know that my 200-400 just couldn't match it regardless of which body it's attached to, but it still feels good to know that the D3 + 200-400mm combination can come pretty close to the exposure and DOF characteristics the 200 f/2 would have on my D2x.
#1. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 0MelT Registered since 06th Jul 2002Tue 25-Sep-07 06:57 PM
On the other hand, my 200-400/4 is simply a 200-400/4 on a FX body where it is a 300-600/4 on a DX body .
I still lust for the 200/2 regardless if it is hung on my D2X or perhaps a future purchased D3. This is the one lens on my wish list and will stay on there . The 600/4 may creep back on my list once I get a D3.
#2. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 1lowdrag Registered since 06th Aug 2007Wed 26-Sep-07 05:12 AM
And there you've hit the nail on the head. I've got used to using the 200/400 on a D2X and am worried about losing the length on an FF body. I simply am not strong enough to carry a 600mm all day and so the only way out is a TC. So, we go up to FF and get better ISO, then we have to add a TC to get the lens back to where it was before - result is a stalemate perhaps? You'll tell me, you lot being far more erudite and technical. Whatever, it seems that we'll be losing DOF.
#4. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 3dgh3 Registered since 29th Jan 2007Wed 26-Sep-07 03:56 PM
Actually, I don't think using a TC just gets you back to where you started. I'm shooting a 200-400 with a 2X TC now, and it's pretty manageable, with the VR, and still subjects. It will shoot down to 1/30 or so pretty well. Realistically, tracking moving subjects at 800mm is pretty much out of the question, anyway. But, my point is that if I can get to 3200 ISO, then I'm more than going to make up for doubling my f-stop with the TC, in comparison to 400 ISO with my D200.
Life is short, death is long, there is no perfection in life, only in death; perfect stillness. Enjoy life!
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#6. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 5MelT Registered since 06th Jul 2002Wed 26-Sep-07 10:20 PM
>..but then: the D3 also makes your 200 f/2 an f/1....having
>gained 2 stops!
Huh? Is there a joke in there somewhere that I am missing?
#7. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 6J_Krol Registered since 01st Apr 2002Thu 27-Sep-07 03:39 PM
Yes, there is, but may be, you have to dig.
Thing is, and there goes my joke..., that if the D3 turns the 200-400 f/4 into an f/2 because it's better in handling noise, then the smae thing happens to the 200 f/2. The D3 would turn it into an f/1.
Well, sort of, just like the 200-400 f/4, sort of.
And yes, I know about DOF changes and things like that. But if the D3 does this to the OP's 200-400 f/4, it will do the same thing with all other lenses.
Well, I thought it was a good joke..
"You don't need eyes to see...you need vision" (Maxi Jazz)
#8. "RE: No" | In response to Reply # 0
- for starters f2 gives a much brighter viewfinder and possibly the fastest AF speed any Nikon lens to date compared to f4 on the zoom.
Using both lenses at 200mm only 1 lens gives f2 and f2.8 exposure and depth of field options.
Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.
#10. "RE: F2 200" | In response to Reply # 8Neilus Registered since 15th May 2007Sat 29-Mar-08 04:39 AM
Hi, love the debate about the D3 /D300. I have a F2 200mm and just love it. I currently have a D200 and about to upgrade to a D3 / D300 and would like some advice if could spare it. I have herd many things about both camera's and like your debate cannot decide between the two. I also have a 1.4 teleconverter and a 2.0. I find the 2.0 very soft and not much use.
One of my questions is Does the D300 use software to smooth images out after 400ISO. I have taken a few shots with the D300 and at 800ISO looks smooth and clean. I have had other tell me when you go to print the images are soft.
Reading the reviews on B&H on the D3, every one is impressed and couldn't be happier.(except one guy who has had three D3 camera's and it wont format his cards.???)
Just a bit of back ground on what I shoot, (motor sport, weddings portraits, events)
Gear I have ( D70!! Ahhhh, D200, AFS f2 200VR, AF80 - 200mm 2.8,
10.5 Fisheye DX 2.8, 17-55mm DX 2.8, 50mm 1.4, Tele 1.4 and 2.0, SB 600 flash and very Soon SB 800.
Is it worth going to a D3? I would need another wide angle lens...
Thanks very much for your time!
#11. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 0
>I simply am not strong enough to carry a 600mm all day
>and so the only way out is a TC. So, we go up to FF and
>get better ISO, then we have to add a TC to get the
>lens back to where it was before.
The D300 is Nikon's 1.5x teleconverter for the D3.
#12. "RE: 200-400+d3=200f/2???" | In response to Reply # 11dgberg Registered since 25th Aug 2007Sat 29-Mar-08 10:31 AM | edited Sun 30-Mar-08 08:29 AM by dgberg
I stayed with the D300 and D2Xs as the FX D3 will just not cut it for long range photography. With D300 and attached 200-400 f/4 vr plus the 1.4tc I am short at least 90% of the time. I never have enough focal length. You guys that are shooting the 200,300 and 400 lenses. What are you doing,shooting at a zoo
I will get a D3X if it is about 24mp FX and 12mp DX.
But what a rig that will be. D3X with the 14-24 for landscapes and shoot in Dx format with a 600 f/4 vr for wildlife. I better get too saving as those 3 pieces will be at least $17,000. Ouch!