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Thread: Birdie shots

  1. #21
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    Thanks for your golden words
    Is bino a need for birding? What do I look out for to buy one?
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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  2. #22
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    For birding, length is never enough. Therefore the best choice is still the 600mm F4. Even for myself most of the time i find 500mm with 1.4xTC is not enough, worst as i am using full frame body rather than a 1.5 crop body.

    Why most birders using 600mm F4? Reason is the speed response of the lens is very fast. Birds are fast moving.

    The image captured is very sharp and of high quality, even crop 50% from the photo image you will still find detail on the birds' feathers. Even under low light, these lens are still about to perform very very well and the image comes out very good also.

    As how to look for birds, listen to their call and watch out for movement in the trees and bushes. Do not go near them, they will definitely fly off as they are scare of us. That is one of the reason when 600mm is prefer, we can take photos of them at a distance from them so that we do not scare them off.

    If you keep wondering why birders using 600mm lens, you might want to think what kind of camera body are they using?

  3. #23
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    But most of us would need to "cut" off limbs, quarrel with wives for months before we can buy such lens... Getting that bigma is already a half year savings.... You need like 10 bigma (or more?) before you can afford a 600mm F/4... How to afford?
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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  4. #24
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    I had nvr doubt that 600mm with 1.4x extender is not enough
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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  5. #25

    Default Re: Birdie shots

    To me birding other than equipment and knowledge you need 2 other things:

    1. Patience - you never know what and where they will appear exactly
    2. Luck - you can wait whole day and nothing special appears
    3. Perserverance - you may have to revisit the same place many times before you find the bird you have aimed for.

    I am just a casual shooter, using 300mm + 1.4x on 500D definitely not enough but I managed to capture not too lousy shots.
    My dream is the 300-800 f5.6 sigmonster since I shoot sports once in a while also whereby a zoom is useful. Oh well...no $$ how? Dream lor...

  6. #26
    Senior Member madmartian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    Thanks for your golden words
    Is bino a need for birding? What do I look out for to buy one?
    My words are not golden. To some is rubbish....................

    Some birders use bino to spot for birds, to see what species they are, before moving in. I guess it beats looking through the VF

    Birding is a very very expensive hobby. If you are not serious about it or don't have much time to shoot birds, I advice you not to invest in expensive lenses. The long lens is not the only thing you have to invest in. Many accesories are needed & they are not cheap
    Take the shot!

  7. #27
    Member fmeeran's Avatar
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    But most of us would need to "cut" off limbs, quarrel with wives for months before we can buy such lens... Getting that bigma is already a half year savings.... You need like 10 bigma (or more?) before you can afford a 600mm F/4... How to afford?
    The bigma is a very reasonable compromise when you don't like to cut off limbs.
    The problem with it is that it is not especially a fast lens, and as the birds mostly like being in shaded places, this becomes a bit of a problem.
    On the other hand the bigma 50-500 and it's cousin 150-500 are the cheapest way to get to 500mm with optical stabilization. They are also quite manageable handheld. The image quality is certainly not as good as the Nikon prime lenses or the legendary 200-400mm, but on the other hand these are a whole lot cheaper and quite a bit lighter than most of them.

    I would also suggest visiting places with high overlook from which you can shoot (bridge, hill, nearby HDB, viewing tower, etc). That would give you a more horizontal viewpoint. Beside waterbodies is also a good place to go.
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  8. #28
    Senior Member yyD70S's Avatar
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    This is a very good thread with a lot of good advices. I, too, am trying birding and am really strggling to get anything; to say the least.

  9. #29
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    Thank you fmeeran and madmartian. Like what gundamseed bro said, luck is a huge factor, most of my best bird shots are unexpected chance encounter. I just had one yesterday that features a sleeping sparrow broad day light. Will share with you guys when I get home.
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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  10. #30
    Senior Member UncleFai's Avatar
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    Like what gundamseed bro said, luck is a huge factor...
    With my limited gear of a D90 + Tammy 18-270mm and a Kenko 2x TC, here are some shots I managed to make. IQ is much to be desired of... and the focus hunting and over-exposure drove me crazy... but they motivate me to look into investing a Sigma 150-500 (Today's 4D will determine that...)

    A kingfisher chilling out on a street light...





    A yellow-napped oriole...



    A pretty pigeon...


  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai

    Today's 4D will determine that...
    sigh... Have to wait for next week...

  12. #32
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    Haha.. The good news is DD-electronic has start adjusting some lens prices downwards. The bigma is one of them. You might get a better price next week.
    Equipment: D800|D700|11-16|28-75|105 Micro VR|50 F1.4G|85 F1.8G
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  13. #33

    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by Cowseye View Post
    Thanks for your golden words
    Is bino a need for birding? What do I look out for to buy one?
    Yes, you should bring a bino, preferably Swarovski, Zeiss or Leica make. Otherwise, Nikon would be fine too.

  14. #34

    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by Reno View Post
    For birding, length is never enough. Therefore the best choice is still the 600mm F4.
    How is the 18k 800mm?

  15. #35
    Senior Member UncleFai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by An drew

    How is the 18k 800mm?
    Costly and heavy.

  16. #36
    Senior Member ovaltinemilo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by UncleFai View Post
    With my limited gear of a D90 + Tammy 18-270mm and a Kenko 2x TC, here are some shots I managed to make. IQ is much to be desired of... and the focus hunting and over-exposure drove me crazy... but they motivate me to look into investing a Sigma 150-500 (Today's 4D will determine that...)

    Hi UncleFai, see that you do have interest in birdie shots. Coming from a low budget shooter like me, I think at least a 600mm(35mm eqv) is suitable for birding. The best of course are the longest and fastest glasses but I can't afford them for sure since I'm doing it for pleasure. I tried a AF 80-200mm f2.8 with 2x TC and it results slightly better than your combo, but still not very good...have tried 70-300mm f5.6 but it wasn't close enuff for impact. A popular combo would be Nikkor AFS 300mm f4 + 1.4 TC which might cost more than the bigma or 80-400mm VR. Just to share what are the combis I have thot of which might suit your wallet.
    Last edited by ovaltinemilo; 5th April 2011 at 11:56 AM.
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  17. #37
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Quote Originally Posted by An drew View Post
    How is the 18k 800mm?
    Pro and con....

    Pro:
    Lighter than 600mm, longer reach.

    Con:
    min focusing distance is longer than 600mm, therefore cannot focus if subject too near to you. Also you have stand at the back of those using 600mm or 500mm, therefore they might block your view.

    Cannot focus with 1.4xTC unless you using a pro body ( this i heard pple say one, i not sure). Bokeh lose out to 600mm F4. Some people mention that 600mm + 1.4xTC is still sharper than 800mm F5.6.

    so take your pick.

  18. #38
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    somebody selling a nikon mount tamron 200-500mm F5.6 - F6.3 lens in BnS... pretty good decent lens and cheap. All you need is a proper ballhead and tripod to match that lens.

  19. #39
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    I am thinking of saving up for the Sigma 300-800mm.

  20. #40
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    Default Re: Birdie shots

    Not sure if that guy is still selling or sold this Sigmonster (300-800mm).

    There's one piece going ard in the BnS - Nikon section

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