Even though we ARE Nikon lovers,we are NOT affiliated with Nikon Corp. in any way.

English German French

Sign up Login
Home Forums Articles Galleries Recent Photos Contest Help Search News Workshops Shop Upgrade Membership Recommended
members
All members Wiki Contests Vouchers Apps Newsletter THE NIKONIAN™ Magazines Podcasts Fundraising

Is a GT5540 too big?

KnightPhoto

Alberta, CA
4967 posts

Click to send email to this author Click to send private message to this author
KnightPhoto Gold Member Nikonian since 18th Dec 2006
Thu 10-Apr-08 03:31 AM | edited Thu 10-Apr-08 03:40 AM by KnightPhoto

Someone possessed my body and ordered a 500 VR (am still not sure how this happened )! This will be my birding lens on my D300.

So now I need some advice on support options. I'll provide some general parameters and am interested in advice:
- one thought is buy the biggest meanest legs able to support any eventual 600 or 800mm. Also the 500 VR is not cheap, so I am of a mind to obtain commensurate legs that do not compromise. I have the most understanding of wives to allow me the 500mm, but realistically an even bigger lens would be MANY years away.
- if I need portability for birding I'm almost certain to go monopod, beanbag, and handheld. In fact my goal at the moment is these will be my primary methods with the 500mm (I go out regularly with a buddy and this is his main methodology with his 500mm IS). Of course I may adjust these thoughts based on my results in the field.
- no experience at these exotic lengths but aspire to both 700mm and especially 850mm work from the tripod and yes I own and will certainly try the TC20E at 1000mm.
- planning on the Markins M-20 (and Sidekick at a later date?) but also having some second thoughts about a Wimberley 2 or equivalent for the 500 and then just buy my friends used BH-3 for HDR.
- I have heard that John Shaw considers the GT35xx series as the start point for macro. I aspire to a used 200mm f4, but not right yet due to about to blow through major $$$.
- I also aspire to become an HDR photographer from wide-angle on up.
- I would consider adding a smaller tripod as a second addition for mobility for general HDR or airplane travel a couple years down the road but right now I had better stick to 1 tripod (prefer to stay married ).
- cannot for the life of me figure out whether to get the D300 body L-bracket or the MB-D10 bracket but that is a side issue I guess to the central tripod leg question.
- I am 5'11" in reasonable health. Probably most tripod work would be within 1 mile of the car or if further then I'd really take my time and making a day of it, otherwise I will go monopod.
- PhotoProShop has the 5540LS for what appears to be reasonable price when compared with the GT35xx series (i.e. it is only a $100-200 boost for the 55xx series). So is the decision really just about how tough it may be to lug the big legs and buck it up a little in order to obtain the best possible macro and birding support? I don't know much about the fine points here and not sure why most people seem to get the 35xx series?

Any help, advice and experiences appreciated!

Steve K, Nikonian in Edmonton
My Nikonians gallery
'A camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.' -- Dorothea Lange

Subject
ID
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
1
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
2
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
3
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
4
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
5
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
6
     Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
7
     Reply message RE: 200-400, LP-47 vs. Wimberley AP-553
17
     Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
8
          Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
9
               Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
10
               Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
11
                    Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
12
                         Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
13
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
14
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
15
     Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
16
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
18
Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
19
     Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
20
          Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 & Jobu welding
21
          Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
22
          Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
23
          Reply message RE: Is a GT5540 too big?
24

G