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Thread: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

  1. #1

    Default Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Hi guys.. im a guy that is into wildlife photography.. i like to shoot animals n birds.
    and im in a dilemma now.. which lens will be more useful ?
    A) 70-400mm F4.5 -5.6 G SSM
    B) 70 - 200mm F2.8 G

    Apparently many have told me A...becos it has a better focal length. I know.. B will give me better IQ.. then my next question is the 200mm enough to shoot in a Zoo?
    Then also .. pls enlighten me what are the uses for 70 200..what are they best for..
    sorry im new to photography..

    Thanks !
    Last edited by TWmilkteaTW; 31st May 2011 at 01:31 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    i got the 80-200 f2.8 AFD, its more than enough for zoo and i'm happy with the result. here's the set for my recent visit to the zoo:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/ncinco/...7626301480464/

    but the problem is that its not enough for small birds, this is my dilemma... i find myself shooting birds these days and i get frustrated in not having enough reach. by the way, im a DX user (D90)

    i've heard people uses the 70-200 VR2 + Nikon 2x converter

  3. #3

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    It all depends on when you take the shots...if in bright daylight, the Sigma 150-500mm can do the job and if i remember correctly it can also work with Sigma`s own 2x TC.

    Just that pass the 250mm range, best to use a tripod in my opinion.
    Last edited by Reportage; 31st May 2011 at 02:09 AM.
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  4. #4
    Member fmeeran's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by Reportage View Post
    It all depends on when you take the shots...if in bright daylight, the Sigma 150-500mm can do the job and if i remember correctly it can also work with Sigma`s own 2x TC.

    Just that pass the 250mm range, best to use a tripod in my opinion.
    The Sigma 150-500 will give decent images at 500mm handheld and with OS on as long you have stopped down to at least f8.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    The 70-200 on a crop body is enough, for me at least.

    Because you can get pretty close to the animals.

  6. #6
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    I would say... go for the 70-200 f2.8. If you want more range, invest in a x2 TC or x1.4 TC, which is pretty good in zoo setting.

  7. #7
    Senior Member luckyorange's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    how about 70-300? haha or the 55-200 also enough, just that its bad in low light for 55-200
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Inferno View Post
    The 70-200 on a crop body is enough, for me at least.

    Because you can get pretty close to the animals.
    whats a crop body? u mean Full frame?

  9. #9

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by rhino123 View Post
    I would say... go for the 70-200 f2.8. If you want more range, invest in a x2 TC or x1.4 TC, which is pretty good in zoo setting.
    thought of.. because this way its cheaper rather than getting a new lens however im aware tat if i use a TC.. be it 1.4 or X2.. it will no longer be F2.8. it increase 1 if not 2 f/stops. N what irks me more is if i had TC on.. the AF no longer work for me on the lens.
    Sony user here.

  10. #10
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    whats a crop body? u mean Full frame?
    Crop body means APS-C body, which also means that there will be a crop factor to be taken as consideration. For Nikon, the crop factor is usually 1.5. This simply means that the range of the lens should multiply by this factor. (eg, 70-200mm was 105-300mm).

    For full frame camera, there will not be a crop factor in it and so 70-200mm lens would function as a 70-200mm lens.

  11. #11
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    thought of.. because this way its cheaper rather than getting a new lens however im aware tat if i use a TC.. be it 1.4 or X2.. it will no longer be F2.8. it increase 1 if not 2 f/stops. N what irks me more is if i had TC on.. the AF no longer work for me on the lens.
    Sony user here.
    I think AF should be able to work. From what I understand (sorry, I am a Canon user), you would need a starting aperture of f8 for the AF to work. Adding the 1.4 or 2x teleconverter would increase your aperture by 1 or 2 stop. The starting aperture will still not reach f8 if you are using the 70-200mm f2.8 lens.

    The only downside I see was that, by adding a TC would generally degrade your IQ, especially the x2 TC which would make your pic abit on the soft side.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    Hi guys.. im a guy that is into wildlife photography.. i like to shoot animals n birds.
    and im in a dilemma now.. which lens will be more useful ?
    A) 70-400mm F4.5 -5.6 G SSM
    B) 70 - 200mm F2.8 G
    I own both. The 70-200 is GREAT for portraits, but at the zoo, the 70-400 is better. For general wildlife, the 70-400 is better. Fantastic image quality too, it's the best lens in that range from any maker.


    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    whats a crop body? u mean Full frame?
    This can be answered by google... But basically, the Sony A850 and A900 are the 2 full frame Sony cameras. If you don't know, you are almost certainly o na crop body.


    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    thought of.. because this way its cheaper rather than getting a new lens however im aware tat if i use a TC.. be it 1.4 or X2.. it will no longer be F2.8. it increase 1 if not 2 f/stops. N what irks me more is if i had TC on.. the AF no longer work for me on the lens.
    Sony user here.
    The AF will work fine with the 70-200, but it will be SLOW. Just get the 70-400, it's about 1800 in HK. You can find it second-hand here too.
    Alpha

  13. #13

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Yea.. so the 70 400 is definitely better/more useful for wildlife shooting huh.. since they are usually far from u. Because if i were to get the 70 400m then i dont see the point of getting the 70 200..vise visa.

    Can owners of 70 200 tell me what are these lens good for? as in for shooting what n under what kinda environment it will be useful?
    Thanks !

  14. #14

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rashkae View Post
    I own both. The 70-200 is GREAT for portraits, but at the zoo, the 70-400 is better. For general wildlife, the 70-400 is better. Fantastic image quality too, it's the best lens in that range from any maker.




    This can be answered by google... But basically, the Sony A850 and A900 are the 2 full frame Sony cameras. If you don't know, you are almost certainly o na crop body.




    The AF will work fine with the 70-200, but it will be SLOW. Just get the 70-400, it's about 1800 in HK. You can find it second-hand here too.
    wow thanks for your input its useful.. yea definitely gonna get them in HK.. its almost 30-40% cheaper than SG.. After purchase i have to bring my stuff to the Sony center to exchange for the " Tourists warranty" right?

  15. #15
    Moderator rhino123's Avatar
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    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rashkae View Post
    For general wildlife, the 70-400 is better. Fantastic image quality too, it's the best lens in that range from any maker.
    Er... Rashkae, I think Sony is the ONLY maker for the 70-400mm range lens.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by rhino123 View Post
    Er... Rashkae, I think Sony is the ONLY maker for the 70-400mm range lens.
    Still makes it the best, right?
    Alpha

  17. #17

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Quote Originally Posted by TWmilkteaTW View Post
    Can owners of 70 200 tell me what are these lens good for? as in for shooting what n under what kinda environment it will be useful?
    Thanks !
    Low-light events... I used it for F1, the concerts there, catwalk shoots, etc.
    Alpha

  18. #18

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Too bad you didn't join the outing over the weekend. I could have let you try both lenses.
    Alpha

  19. #19

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Most animals in the Singapore zoo don't need a very long lens to reach them. Usually the animals with water barrier are a bit further (eg. Tiger, Lion, primates). These are the ones where a 300mm or 400m reach will be useful. 400mm can be overkill in many cases, its often only taking the face area (or even partial face) of some animals. Most animals are outdoors so the 70-400/4.5-5.6 will be good enough and versatile (provided image quality is acceptable to you). The only bad point will be slow aperture and with that, slow shutter speeds, while needing to maintain 1/300 or 1/400 to reduce the chance of camera shake. Yes, I know there is SR on the camera, but imo, its not a cureall and the basic guidelines still apply.

    Bring a shorter lens like a 50mm or 35mm or closer stuff. Lots of plants and flowers to take photos of as well. There is also the reptile and 'fragile forest' enclosures where a shorter/faster lens will be helpful.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Which lens is better for Zoo shooting?

    Thanks for the replies. They are really useful. If anyone would wish to add more advice or their professionalism pls feel free to.
    ^^ appreciate much.

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