I need a lens for wild life

Discussion in 'Nature' started by ahmed_a|1, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. Im going to shoot wild life im using d600 with prim lenses and 24-70 . Im looking for telephoto lens and I cant afford the 70-200 .. any
    of u used the 70-300 do u advice me to buy one .
    Im using now .
    24-70 2.8
    105 2.8
    50 g1.4
    85 g 1.8
  2. The limit of "can't afford the 70-200" isn't specific enough. There are 2, one costing about $2400US and the other $1400US. Perhaps you would make this a bit easier by estimating what you CAN afford. Also, when you say wildlife, do you mean large mammals (elephants, giraffes, etc), small mammals (squirrels, etc), large birds, small birds, birds in flight? The kinds of animals make a difference to what may be recommended.
  3. Well to be honest I cant afford any of the 70-200 lenses . Flying bird mostly
  4. My budget 1000 $
  5. May I suggest a 2nd hand AF-S 300mm f/4. I can use this handheld on FX to chase and pan for 'on the wing' exposures and this lens couples very well with TC 1.4 EII and TC 1.7EII and most likely the newer TC 2.0EII.
    For your stated budget this is a compromise but def. attainable second hand and at a pinch maybe a new one might be very close to $1000 nowerdays........
  6. Another way to go about it would be to get a used copy of one of the sigma apo zooms reaching 400 or 500mm at the long end, or a new tamron 70-300 USD. The sigmas have a reputation of being more variable from one copy to the next, so you would definitely want to test those thoroughly before buying (or get one that comes with a solid return/refund policy). The tamron 70-300 gets excellent reviews all around and would cost a lot less than your budget limit, just make sure to get the new version (with USD) not the previous one.
  7. If you are really wanting to do widlife, I'd suggest replacing the D600 with a D7100 for starters, and then buying a used Nikon 30mm f4 and a used TC-14e. That will give you a better autofocus system and more "reach", and a better quality lens than you will be able to afford if you keep the D600.
    Kent in SD
  8. Most of my shooting are portrait im thinking of wild life becoz im going to Australia only for two weeks and I need the
    iso performance in d600 still have the d7000 for extra reach.. is it better to switch from fx to dx body ?!
  9. just wondering - why do you need the iso performance of the d600 in particular? Is the trip primarily for portraits/indoors/low light shooting and you hope for wildlife opportunities in between, for example do you expect to go look for wildlife before sunrise/after sunset mostly? Assuming the outdoor light intensity and dependability will be similar to here in southern california, as long as the sun is up you won't need isos above 1600 for good wildlife shots.
  10. You do get the 1.5X advantage with DX.
    So much depends on the nature of the nature, so to speak. Fast moving birds and the like need good autofocus capabilities, although people did photograph them before AF was invented.
    It's going to be hard to find any long lens with that capability, zoom especially, in your price range.
    For more stationary targets like a sitting kangaroo, an older manual focus mirror lens (e.g. 500mm) would be super if you can find one with an AI or later mount. The Reflex-Nikkor 500mm f/8 often sells for around $200. Ditto for the Sigma Mirror 600mm f/8 lens in a Nikon mount. There are also some very fine AI and AIS manual focus regular prime telephotos.
    If you go to any MF lens, you will need to practice a lot before you go so you're not learning as you are trying to shoot. Learning such arts as quick manual focus and things like pre-focus need to be worked on, just as the sports photographers did back in the day.
  11. I'm not a wildlife shooter, but I've been reasonably happy with my 70-300 (VR) and D300 when trying to catch the odd bird in flight. The lens is not at its absolute best wide open at 300 mm, though, and I suppose that's where you may be a lot of the time when shooting wildlife. A used 300 f/4 would probably be a better bet if you're really going for it. As a general purpose telephoto zoom with a useful range for occational wildlife snaps, I think the 70-300 is fine.
  12. Today's cameras are just not designed for MF. I tried it with my full-frame camera and 1,000mm lens (a 500mm and a 2.0x TC). I took several hundred images and they looked to be in focus in the VF, but only a few were critically focused. I take thousands of AF images each month and get a very high rate of sharp images, so it's not my lack of experience. VF in modern cameras are just not designed with AF in mind.
    I've shot with high pixel density crop sensors, full-frame high density sensors and full-frame low density sensors. The most important factor for wildlife is the AF system's accuracy, consistency and speed. Of the three bodies I'm thinking of, the lowest pixel-density resulted in the most keepers, because it got the most pix critically in focus. I suspect that the d7000 will have the best AF performance of the two you're considering, not because it has denser pixels, but because it has an AF system designed with action shooting in mind.
    Focus accuracy is, by far, the most important factor in achieving high keeper rates and pixel density has little to do with it, except in its influence on high ISO performance. Acceptable noise performance at ISO 1600 is enough to serve you well for wildlife and bird shooting.
  13. 300 f/4 for wildlife on a reasonable budget. When that's not enough reach, accept the idea of a crop. You can do better with mega-money, but this is an excellent way to start.
  14. One more vote for the 300 F/4. It is a great lens. On your D7000 it will be a joy to use.
  15. Thanks guys ill try to find second hand 300 f4 thanks for ur help
  16. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Take a look at the Sigma 150-500. It's a decent lens, a bit on the slow side but close to your limit and it will give you some reach. You really need a solid tripod and head that may push you yet another $1000, but a good tripod is a solid investment.
  17. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    I do disagree with David's point though. I do use a manual lens, a 600mm f5.6 Pentax lens with my various Pentax bodies, and it works great. I used to use an even older Takumar 500mm f4.5 (a real steal by the way, you can get them under $700 and, while I maybe wrong, they do work on Nikon bodies with proper adaptors M42-Nikon). Again a tripod is essential.
  18. U r right douglas ..Im using Manfrotto 055CXPRO3 with manfrotto head .. I like it
  19. If you are coming half way around the world for only two weeks, and you want to come home with a collection of
    Australian animal shots, I would suggest that (unless you have a very specialised trip planned to some specific places)
    you will get the best images shooting in zoos and wildlife parks. That said, you could get very good shots with a 70-300,
    and it may be more versatile than a long prime and easier to tote than a bigger zoom.
  20. I think you may be rather optimistic if, on a short visit, you expect to find a range of size of birds, nicely lit and standing out from the background, and at the right distance to fill much of the image through your chosen lens. Geoff's suggestion is the only realistic option.
  21. If I was going on a 2 week trip and thought I needed a different focal length lens that I think I want to use after I get back, I'd rent one for the trip and see if that's the lens I really need to buy.

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