E Lens on D500 with (non-E) TC1.4 II Between....Occasional Weird Noise

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by mike_halliwell, Jun 5, 2020.

  1. Well, it's not strictly a Non-E TC, but you'll see where I'm going....;)

    OK, Left Field question.. shades of fridge door light scenario!

    Does the aperture actuator lever actually move when you've fitted (and fired) an E lens to a D500?

    Reason I ask is that I put the (non-E) TC 1.4 II between the E only nikon 200-500mm and my D500. Occasionally, like twice in 20 frames, it made a very worrying metallic ping/clang like the lever slipped off something or over-ran it.

    The lens aperture stopped down OK to f11 for the shot.

    There had been an occasional drop out of AF, but I put that down to the 5.6 aperture + 1EV loss for the TC.

    Interestingly Auto Area AF is disabled with the above combo. It just isn't available as you move through the menu.
  2. Mike pinged me about this offline, so I did an experiment last night. My D90, which doesn't know about E lenses but does know my 200-500 is f/5.6, makes a clonk on depth-of-field preview - at f/5.6, so the aperture shouldn't actually be moving. I deduce that it's moving the aperture lever. It's harder to tell on a D8x0 body, because they know about the E aperture and will actually stop down the lens. The D90 doesn't make a clonk when given a Petzval lens that has no AI coupling, so presumably on a non-AI lens it might not activate the aperture lever? At least on DoF preview.

    If there's no aperture lever on the lens, I'd kind of expect an aperture lever in the teleconverter to be flapping around loosely anyway.
  3. Actually, I'm going to repeat that experiment, because I need a break from conference calls.

    Nikkor 200-500 E-aperture lens
    DoF preview goes thunk. No viewfinder effect, and the mirror doesn't black out on DoF preview release. Either the aperture lever is moving or the mechanism attached to it (which is why a D90 can't change the aperture dynamically in DoF preview) is. I don't think there's a body that can dynamically change aperture in DoF preview but not use E aperture (check a D2x?)
    D850: DoF preview is completely silent at f/5.6, and very quiet at smaller apertures. If the mechanical aperture lever is moving, it's doing it inaudibly. The viewfinder doesn't glitch.

    Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 G lens
    DoF preview goes thunk even at f/1.8. You can't adjust the aperture at all while in DoF preview mode. The viewfinder blacks out very briefly when you release DoF preview as the mechanism resets.
    D850: DoF preview goes thunk very quietly even at f/1.8. You can change the aperture while in DoF preview mode, and it's reflected dynamically. There's no glitch from the viewfinder when you leave DoF preview.

    Nikkor 300mm f/4 AF-S (non-G) lens
    DoF preview goes thunk, even at f/4. You can't adjust the aperture in DoF preview. The camera refuses to DoF preview or expose at anything but f/32 (F-EE). Viewfinder glitch on leaving DoF preview (with the lens set to f/32), same as the G lens.
    D850: With the camera controlling the aperture, same as the G lens. With the lens aperture ring controlling the aperture, no lock-out, and the aperture lever feels as though it's fully released and sprung against the lens aperture stop (rather than trying to mirror the behaviour using the aperture ring) - there are smooth steps between stops. Also the aperture change is slightly less rattly with DoF preview on. No viewfinder glitch.

    Nikon-E 50mm f/1.8 (AI-S) lens:
    "F--". The DoF preview button does nothing but lock out the shutter release. The shutter release does work just fine, and the aperture set on the lens works for shutter release.
    D850: Correct aperture (if the non-CPU data is right). DoF preview works and allows dynamic changes, and goes clonk quietly even at f/1.8. No viewfinder glitches.

    Petzval 58mm f/1.9 (non-AI, also no aperture lever) lens:
    D90: Like the 50mm E-series. "F--". DoF preview just locks out the shutter release, doesn't go clonk or glitch on release. Shutter release works fine.
    D850: The camera thinks it has the E-series attached, at full aperture. DoF preview goes clonk quietly, although it doesn't do anything because there's no aperture lever for it to connect to. No viewfinder glitches.

    I don't own any non-AI lenses that actually have an aperture lever (whether or not they'd clear the D90's EE post sensor switch, which I think isn't the modern kind that can't get crunched), but I suspect they'd work like the AI-S lens except that the D850 would think they were at full aperture.

    I'm actually mildly curious what the Df would do. I believe it lacks the D8x0's dynamic aperture lever, so you may be able to set the aperture while in DoF preview mode, but you wouldn't see the effect until you released it and re-applied. I'd kind of expect a viewfinder glitch when you do so, although that my be unique to the D90.

    My conclusion is that the D850 won't move the aperture lever when an E lens is connected. I don't know whether the D500 has the same "dynamic aperture update" thing (or whether all E-aware bodies can do this so long as the lens has an E-aperture); the D700 didn't, and I believe the D3, D4 and D5 series do.

    That was educational. Back to work.
    mike_halliwell likes this.
  4. I wondered whether when AF briefly dropped out, it was caused by loss of comms. I was a very bright day and I only remember seeing the >< rangefinder marks in the VF when I didn't hear/see the AF working.

    Obviously it's quite a heavy lens to use handheld on a well used D500... but with the TC sandwiched between the two, I wonder if there was enough play to briefly lose a contact?

    Yes, I agree, but maybe if E confirmation is briefly lost...?

    However, I can't quite see how a brief loss of comms could mean the actuator and the lever etc could make such a clang. I wonder if it did try to move the lever on the TC and then retract, with the lever moving back under it's own return spring?
  5. I could believe that - as you say, if the camera lever moved but there was no pressure on a lens aperture lever, the teleconverter's lever would be free to flap.

    I've not noticed any weird noises from my TC14 mk2 when used on a 200-500 (one reason I got the 200-500 rather than a 150-600 was so that I had an f/5.6 option that would still get me f/8 through a teleconverter, although the image quality suffers a bit). On its own in a bag the TC's aperture lever does rattle, which worried me when I first got one (Canon's ones don't have a mechanical aperture lever, so they're just lumps of metal with some pass-through wires).

    I trust you're not holding the lens cantilevered off the front of the mount (which would require a lot of wrist strength or faith in your tripod). I assume anything big enough to have a foot is basically supporting the camera rather than the other way around anyway, and a D500 isn't much weight or leverage to hang off a lens mount.
  6. Try it at 420mm and f11/13, auto ISO and 1/320 for stationary butterflies. VR on obviously!

    Well, my left hand is under the zoom ring, right hand is on/around the D500 grip. Tripod foot and ring are off.

    Occasionally need to manually turn the AF to nearest focus as the motor won't. Thumb and little finger can just reach back.
  7. For the moon, even f/11 wasn't too bad at 500x1.4, but we're well into the diffraction range of a modern dSLR then; I often knock down to f/8 for the bare lens at the long end, but reluctantly. The problem with 420mm and f/11 is that it'll basically be telling me I should have got a Sigma sport (not that the 60-600 was available when I got my Nikkor, and the 150-600 isn't exactly small and cheap). The 500mm PF is on my wish list, but it's twice the price of the Sigma, and I'm still unsure whether it's twice as good (but it might be worth it for portability).

    Phew. So no great torque on the mount, then?

    Honestly I often just leave the foot (and a QR plate) on mine, and I have an L-plate on the camera. I often leave the foot pointing up, where it's a good handle but is out of the way for normal lens support. I'm tempted to weld a small umbrella onto an Arca clamp so I can use it as a sunshade/rain proofing for the lens/body when I'm out and about. Product idea, anyone?

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