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Canon vs Nikon - entry level.

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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 16:02   #1
Apodidae49
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Canon vs Nikon - entry level.

Following on from my thread about an entry level DSLR on the Canon Forum Iíd like to pose this question to you camera buffs about the merits of these 2 outfits.

Canon 200D with 18-55 and 70-300 zooms

Nikon D5300 with 18-55 and 70-300 zooms

As outfits they are (nominally) £599 the Canon and £799 the Nikon.

Bloke working the optics at RSPB Conwy reckons itís a no brainer and to go for the Nikon. What do you photographic birders think?
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 16:22   #2
Andrew Whitehouse
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Over recent months I've been using this Nikon 70-300mm AFP lens:
https://www.wexphotovideo.com/nikon-...-lens-1605302/
It's quite cheap and very light but produces some really pleasing results. It's very sharp and, at least on a D500, is very quick to focus. Reviews for this lens all seem to be extremely positive. I don't know if Canon have anything that produces as good a result at the same price range but if you go the Nikon route, I'd say this is the lens to get.

Here are some sample shots, which are all taken with a D500 (probably the best camera for this lens but a bit pricy).
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 16:37   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Whitehouse View Post
Over recent months I've been using this Nikon 70-300mm AFP lens:
https://www.wexphotovideo.com/nikon-...-lens-1605302/
It's quite cheap and very light but produces some really pleasing results. It's very sharp and, at least on a D500, is very quick to focus. Reviews for this lens all seem to be extremely positive. I don't know if Canon have anything that produces as good a result at the same price range but if you go the Nikon route, I'd say this is the lens to get.

Here are some sample shots, which are all taken with a D500 (probably the best camera for this lens but a bit pricy).
Those are great photos Andrew. Thatís the sort of input I was hoping for. The bloke at RSPB also said to get a DX camera as that increases the focal length of your zoom lenses. True or gobbledygook?
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 16:44   #4
Andrew Whitehouse
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Originally Posted by Apodidae49 View Post
Those are great photos Andrew. Thatís the sort of input I was hoping for. The bloke at RSPB also said to get a DX camera as that increases the focal length of your zoom lenses. True or gobbledygook?
Yes, it's true. At the lower end of the price range it's only DX cameras in any case.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 16:48   #5
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A couple of other notes on the lens I mention. The first is that it's not compatible with older cameras (but I think it should work okay with the D5300). The second is that you need to get the VR (vibraton reduction) version. There's a non-VR version, which is a bit cheaper, but it's worth paying a bit extra for the VR because it will be sharper and better in lower light conditions.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:00   #6
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Once again, thanks Andrew. Just researching and the D5300 is DX and the two lenses provided with it (18-55 and 70-300) are the VR versions. So £799 for the outfit looks to be a decent price, and that’s from John Lewis.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:03   #7
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Originally Posted by Andrew Whitehouse View Post
Over recent months I've been using this Nikon 70-300mm AFP lens:
https://www.wexphotovideo.com/nikon-...-lens-1605302/
It's quite cheap and very light but produces some really pleasing results. It's very sharp and, at least on a D500, is very quick to focus.
Nice photos, and a good suggestion. It's worth noting that this lens also cooperates nicely on a Nikon V2 with the FT1 adapter. Due to the smaller sensor, this is an 810mm equivalent. I've seen offers for this lens as low as Euro 150 or so.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:09   #8
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When I got back into photography after a break from film, I went with a Nikon d90 + 18-55 + 55-200 and found changing lenses in the field a real hassle. If you can go for a Nikon with the 18-300 f/3.5-6.3 DX VR, it would be a really nice kit. There's also an older 18-300 f/3.5-5.6 (the older is faster at 5.6 but heavier) that is very good too. There's a Tamron 18-400, but I've not heard good things about it, so I'd stay away.

Having said all that, the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3 DX VR AF-P lens is very light, inexpensive, and is supposed to have a fast auto-focus. I've not used it. If you don't mind swapping lenses, or will be using this most all the time, it's probably a great choice for wildlife. Because it is a DX (not full-frame) lens, it's a good weight match to the d5000s.

Canon does not have anything like this and their 70-300 lenses are full frame so will be a fair bit heavier (losing any advantage of the tiny SL2/200d). I think many Canon shooters go with the 18-135 STM plus a long lens, as the 18-135 is a very good walk-around lens that won't leave you short like the 18-55.

As for the body, the d5500 is about the same thing and price as the d5300 but a bit lighter and adds touch screen. The d5600 (current model) is about the same weight as the d5500 and adds bluetooth/NFC, which isn't much. The d5300-d5600 all have the same autofocusing mechanism. So, if a few oz of weight matters try the d5500 instead, otherwise they are all the same photos. The SL2 is a new Canon (2018 I think) and also a very light body (a fraction lighter than the d5600). It takes great photos too.

Personally, when I'm out shooting birds I bring a Tamron 150-600g2 ($1300) plus my iPhone. No short zoom. You can probably find the last generation of the 150-600s (Tamron or Sigma) in the $650-800 range and the current set in maybe $1000 used. The tammy is really worth the $1300, IMO (I've not tried the Sigma). If you want to shoot birds, I'd try to find a way to get to at least 400mm native if not 600mm native.

To sum it up, if the main point is to shoot birds, I'd try to get the Tammy or Sigma 150-600 and either Nikon or Canon, as you please. A canon SL2 (200d) + 18-135 + 150-600 would be great, for example (or the d5x00 + 18-55 + 150-600). If you cannot swing the 150-600, I think the Nikon d5x00 + 18-300 or 18-55 + 70-300 AF-P is good too. What I find helps me is to make a spreadsheet with all the weights and prices on it, so I can balance cost and weight and reach.

Hope that all helps! I think there will be little quality difference in the photos between canon and nikon bodies, it is all about the lens combos and their weights and minimizing the need to swap lenses.

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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:28   #9
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Thanks for that very comprehensive reply Marc. My budget is a bit limited so a long lens may be out for the foreseeable future. The Nikon has a bigger sensor than the Canon and my hope is to get good crops from the 300mm. I’m not really bothered about a touchscreen and they both have fold-out screens so that’s good.

I’m veering toward the Nikon, based on this thread but there’s a way to go yet.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:34   #10
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Here are a few more sample photos with the 70-300 AFP/ D500 combination. Some of these are quite low light shots and, although the lens is only f6.3 at 300mm, it seems to produce quite usable results at low shutter speeds. The first photo was at ISO 2000 and 1/50. The second at ISO 1600 and 1/320. The third at ISO 400 and 1/125.

It's also good for flight shots.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 17:54   #11
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More excellent photos Andrew! Barring similar results by a Canon user it looks like the Nikon is a good choice.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 19:24   #12
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Exclamation

Apo, can your budget stretch to a Nikon D7200 ? It has a 1.3x in-camera crop available as well which means you can pretty much double the focal length of the lens you put on it. i.e. 400mm becomes ~800mm (35mm eq) , and 600mm becomes ~ 1200mm (35mm eq).
The sensor is top notch still. You'd be hard pressed to find better IQ and AF for the money, and I feel you'd be much happier with the results.

If you're looking to do mostly bird photography you want all the focal length you can get. I'd recommend the Tamron 150-600 G2.

You could even look to get this outfit 2nd hand if you need to save a bit still. Or you could substitute the Tamron 150-600 G1 or Sigma 150-600 C.

If you are looking for more of an all round lens, then consider the Tamron 18-400.

I think you'll eventually end up at outfits like this, so it's probably better to skip the interim steps and save yourself on a depreciation hit. The D7200 is widely available 2nd hand, and there are no issues that I know of. If you buy a lens 2nd hand, you should ask yourself why someone would sell it, as there is unit to unit variation with image quality at that level. Generally, if people get a gem they will hang on to it. Check them carefully and the images they have produced to date.




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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 20:00   #13
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Originally Posted by Apodidae49 View Post
Those are great photos Andrew. Thatís the sort of input I was hoping for. The bloke at RSPB also said to get a DX camera as that increases the focal length of your zoom lenses. True or gobbledygook?
A slight technical point here. The DX camera has a smaller sensor so it only looks through the central part of a lens. The focal length of the lens does not change, only your view through it is smaller. A 300 f/4, for example, stays a 300 f/4 even if you only see through a smaller part of it. That is why people usually say "35mm-equivalent" or just "equivalent" meaning that a DX sensor sees the same field-of-view as, say, a 450mm lens on a 35mm camera as a Nikon DX does through a 300mm lens.

What this means is the depth-of-field will be larger on a DX for the same equivalent view. A 35mm lens on the DX will have the same field-of-view as a 50mm lens (really 52mm) on an FX, but will have the larger depth-of-field that a 35mm has over a 50mm.

B&H has a decent write up on this: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/explora...ng-crop-factor

On other poster mentioned that the d7200 has a 1.3 crop. I'm not sure it's worth doing this in-camera as you can always crop afterwards. I don't think the camera does anything special except crop -- maybe it would affect how the jpeg compression smushes your image, I'd be interested in hearing about that. You'd probably do better by shooting lossless raw and cropping & adjusting in post rather than use the camera's jpeg engine if you're going to crop. Actually, I'm not sure if the d5300 can shoot lossless compressed raw. I know it can do compressed 12-bit or 14-bit, but not sure if it is lossless.

Again, the 1.3x crop mode works just like (and multiplied to) the DX 1.5 crop. It does not change the lens focal length, only limits how much of the lens you look through. 300mm x 1.5 x 1.3 = 585mm equivalent.

Note that Canon has a 1.6x crop, not 1.5x like Nikon DX.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 20:36   #14
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Quote:
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...... One other poster mentioned that the d7200 has a 1.3 crop. I'm not sure it's worth doing this in-camera as you can always crop afterwards. I don't think the camera does anything special except crop -- maybe it would affect how the jpeg compression smushes your image, I'd be interested in hearing about that. You'd probably do better by shooting lossless raw and cropping & adjusting in post rather than use the camera's jpeg engine if you're going to crop. Actually, I'm not sure if the d5300 can shoot lossless compressed raw. I know it can do compressed 12-bit or 14-bit, but not sure if it is lossless.

Again, the 1.3x crop mode works just like (and multiplied to) the DX 1.5 crop. It does not change the lens focal length, only limits how much of the lens you look through. 300mm x 1.5 x 1.3 = 585mm equivalent.

Note that Canon has a 1.6x crop, not 1.5x like Nikon DX.
The way that the 1.3x in-camera crop works in the Nikon D7200 is that it only records that cropped image (whether in RAW or Jpeg) - so effectively your magnification ends up at 1.5x1.3=1.95◊. When you look through the viewfinder there is a border placed around that cropped area, and importantly the AF only tries to function in that area. The resolution is correspondingly reduced from 24MP to ~15.4MP.

This greatly helps in reducing file size and let's you record more images on a memory card. 99.9% of the time you are just throwing away empty sky or background, so it's very worthwhile. It also eeks an extra fps out of the camera, taking the maximum continuous focus speed up to 7fps. Again handy. I almost always shoot in 1.3x crop mode and I'm using a Tamron 150-600 G2 ..... you can never have enough reach ! In practice where possible I try and shoot at ~560mm (~1100mm eq) and f7.1 for better IQ.

The D7200 has one of the best sensors going.

It is well worth the extra expenditure. By far the best bang for your buck camera.

As you and I have both recommended, pair it with the Tamron 150-600 G2 - by far the best birding bang for your buck lens.

Only if really constrained by budget etc would I go with the shorter Tamron or Sigma 100-400's , or as I said if you want an all rounder, the 18-400. Like you, I tend to operate with the D7200 + Tamron 150-600 G2 for birds or landscape portraits, and if I need wider than that I just pull out the mobile phone.




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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 21:15   #15
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Do you have something like borrowlenses.com in the UK? You can, for example, rent the d5300 + 70-300 AF-P DX VR for a week for $85 with damage waiver (or $61 for 3 days). Or the d7200 w/ same lens for $110.

Or, as I mentioned in other thread, just shoot your FZ72 at, say, 450mm equivalent for a week and see what it's like. Maybe with a crop on a DX you'd get a 600mm - 800mm equivalent on a 300mm native lens. Just shoot at that equivalent on your FZ72 and don't crop. The pixels might be better on a DSLR, but the FoV will be the same.

If it's not enough for your shooting, then you need to budget for something like the Tammy 150-600. The tammy will consistently crop down to, maybe, 1500-2000 equivalent with support (monopod) and good lighting. With a tripod, cable release, and a d500, I've cropped it down to about 3500mm equivalent (https://www.birdforum.net/gallery/sh...p/photo/609245) or with a d850 down to about 3000mm equivalent (https://www.birdforum.net/gallery/sh...p/photo/610884).

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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 21:22   #16
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For the OP the critical issue with the 150-600 (in addition to cost) is whether they want to carry around a 2kg lens. Not everyone wants to do that, particularly if they also carry around a scope and tripod as many birders do.

I agree that the D7200 is a good camera, although I like the D500 more for bird photography. Second hand copies of either might be worth looking into.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 21:41   #17
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For the OP the critical issue with the 150-600 (in addition to cost) is whether they want to carry around a 2kg lens. Not everyone wants to do that, particularly if they also carry around a scope and tripod as many birders do.

I agree that the D7200 is a good camera, although I like the D500 more for bird photography. Second hand copies of either might be worth looking into.
I totally agree about weight. I carry the tammy + d850 + monopod on a Black Rapids sling strap and an 8x33 bino on the vortex harness. Sometimes I have a full-size flash (godox v860ii + better beamer) on there too. That works out ok for me, but a spotting scope bigger than a Nikon ed50 would probably break the proverbial camel's back.

In a separate thread from the OP, I also suggested looking at the RX10m4 or P1000. The OP is coming from the FZ72 (20 - 1200 equivalent), so that is why I'm concerned the reach of an APS-C with 300mm will be an issue. I'm not sure you can get consistent 4x crops from a d5300 + 70-300 AF-P DX VR.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 22:03   #18
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I totally agree about weight. I carry the tammy + d850 + monopod on a Black Rapids sling strap and an 8x33 bino on the vortex harness. Sometimes I have a full-size flash (godox v860ii + better beamer) on there too. That works out ok for me, but a spotting scope bigger than a Nikon ed50 would probably break the proverbial camel's back.

In a separate thread from the OP, I also suggested looking at the RX10m4 or P1000. The OP is coming from the FZ72 (20 - 1200 equivalent), so that is why I'm concerned the reach of an APS-C with 300mm will be an issue. I'm not sure you can get consistent 4x crops from a d5300 + 70-300 AF-P DX VR.
The reach is the weakest point on a 70-300mm but it depends a bit on the sort of situations you shoot in, as well as the IQ you're happy with. I've taken reasonable record shots at a fair distance with it. I have a Canon SX50 but it rarely gives better shots than the D500/70-300 combination even with more distant birds. The IQ and potential for cropping is much worse on the SX50.
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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 22:29   #19
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For the OP the critical issue with the 150-600 (in addition to cost) is whether they want to carry around a 2kg lens. Not everyone wants to do that, particularly if they also carry around a scope and tripod as many birders do.

I agree that the D7200 is a good camera, although I like the D500 more for bird photography. Second hand copies of either might be worth looking into.
For the OP, I think the D7200 would be a far better camera. Higher resolution, better low ISO DR, and it will still offer 7fps and great AF (a big step up over the bodies initially considered). I agree, there is no doubt that the D500 is a fantastic camera with 10fps, and sensational AF ...... but it's twice the cost of the D7200, and a little larger and heavier too. I think if the budget is to be stretched or increased, then there will be more bang for the buck in longer glass, once the D7200 level of body is reached.

I carry my 150-600 around on a Black Rapid sling. Very comfortable , makes the load light and unobtrusive over a day, and it's well balanced. It is super quick to bring the camera to the eye and to take snap shots with. It's also handy for bracing with, allowing steadier shots.

Typically I will carry 8x42 binoculars slung around the neck, D7200 and 150-600 G2 on the sling, and with a mobile phone in a pocket. I don't use a tripod or scope.

If ever I can't id or even see birds (chicks hiding etc) with the bins - I just take a picture at full zoom (matches a 24x scope) and look at it on the screen - zooming in further if necessary. I find this works pretty well.




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Old Monday 1st October 2018, 23:52   #20
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Some pertinent info and reviews:

Nikon D7200, 675 grams, ~ £650
https://www.ephotozine.com/article/n...0-review-27218

Tamron 100-400 f4.5-6.3 di VC ,1115 grams, ~ £600
https://www.ephotozine.com/article/t...s-review-31750

Also the Sigma 100-400 f5-6.3 , 1160grams, ~ £650
https://www.ephotozine.com/article/s...s-review-31050

Tamron SP 150-600 f5-6.3 G2 , 1990 grams, ~ £900
https://www.ephotozine.com/article/t...2-review-30082

P.S. I'm sure you might be able to find new prices a bit lower than that, but only you can decide if they're reliable and safe to deal with .....



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Old Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 08:49   #21
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Here are some reviews for the 70-300mm AF-P, which I mentioned earlier. It weighs 400 grams and is available at around £339.

https://www.photographyblog.com/revi...g_ed_vr_review
https://kenrockwell.com/nikon/70-300mm-vr-afp.htm
https://www.ephotozine.com/article/n...r-review-30569
https://photographylife.com/reviews/...0mm-dx-vr-af-p

I don't have a problem with the idea that a bigger and more expensive lens is going to give better results in most situations (though I wonder if all are as sharp or quick to focus as this lens). However, this is really a different type of lens that is so small it's almost imperceptible to carry. Even if one were to graduate to a big lens, I think you'd hang on to this lens for when you want something lighter and smaller that can still give very good results. In my experience it's a significant step up from other cheapish 300mm zoom lenses. The IQ, focus speed (it hardly hunts at all) and sharpness are much better than anything similar that I've ever used. it's also pretty much at its best wide open at 300mm.

I normally use a 300mm f4 PF but have been using this while that lens has been fixed. I've been surprised at how little I miss it. It's an excellent, inexpensive lens for anyone starting out with DSLR wildlife photography. You can learn a lot about what a DSLR brings over a superzoom and about how to use the lens and camera. You get this in a package that's not much bigger or more expensive than a decent superzoom.
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Old Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 09:52   #22
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I think, for my budget, the Nikon outfit is getting more attractive daily and I can always get a long lens later. I’ll have a chat with the blokes at In Focus, Martin Mere as at least one of them is a Nikon man and are they are generally very good at dispensing advice. The advice I have received here is spot-on though, and keep it coming.
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Old Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 17:48   #23
marcsantacurz
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Originally Posted by Apodidae49 View Post
I think, for my budget, the Nikon outfit is getting more attractive daily and I can always get a long lens later. Iíll have a chat with the blokes at In Focus, Martin Mere as at least one of them is a Nikon man and are they are generally very good at dispensing advice. The advice I have received here is spot-on though, and keep it coming.
Something else I mentioned in a different camera thread for 800 GBP is the d7100. It's almost the same thing as the d7200, but with a smaller buffer and not as nice top display. Like the 7200, there's no AA filter and can shoot 7 fps in 1.3 crop. But you could likely get a used one for under 500 GBP. Need to watch the shutter count and all the other things buying used, but it could be a good deal.

In any case, the d5300 + 70-300 DX AF-P would be a decent starter, but will be very short compared to your Panasonic. I'd try to get a 400mm or 600mm native plus a used d7100 or d7200, if the reason for all this is shooting birds.

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Old Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 21:31   #24
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How does a used D5100 with a 18-105 zoom and a 35mm f1.8 with a Lowepro Slingshot bag and a Sun Sniper sling for £350 sound?

Your input will be much appreciated.
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Old Tuesday 2nd October 2018, 23:33   #25
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300 mm is far too low focal length for bird photography, especially without hide.

Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM | Sports (Canon EOS)
http://www.opticallimits.com/canon_e...sports?start=1

and mentined above

Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di VC USD (Canon EOS)
http://www.opticallimits.com/canon_e...f563vc?start=1

have suspiciously and strangely high MTF resolution. Much higher than

Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 USM L IS
http://www.opticallimits.com/canon_e...4556ff?start=1

Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 USM L IS II
http://www.opticallimits.com/canon_e...556is2?start=1

Nikkor AF 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6 D ED VR
http://www.opticallimits.com/nikon_f...00vrff?start=1

But if that is true, Sigma would be the best one, however very heavy (2860 g). Minimal focus distances for Sigma and Tamron are a little longer then for Canon and Nikon original lenses, but maximum magnification 1:5 seems to be good enough for birds, frogs (?). In case of Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 USM L IS II it is only 0.98m (1:3.2). Such lens would be good to photograph the Eurasian penduline building nest by a photographer sitting on a branch very close to the nest. So Sigma's 2.6 m in some cases would be to long distance ?
And zooms up to 400 mm are more lighter and handy then those up to 600 mm.

Original Canon and Nikon lenses are much more expensive.

You can compute relation between focal length and distance here:
https://darekk.com/calculator/bird-s...nce-calculator

Actually even 1000 mm would be to little in most of cases to photograph birds without a hide.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Edited next day:

Resolution on the website opticallimits.com is measured in line widths per picture height (LW/PH), in all 5 cases for the full frame.
But different sensors were used.

Canon EOS:
1) 50 mp:
Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG HSM OS SPORTS
Tamron SP 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Di USD VC

2) 21 mp:
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 USM L IS
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 USM L IS II

3) Nikon FX:
Nikkor AF 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6 D ED VR

So these results (1-3) are not comparable despite same dimensions of a sensor, because at least 3 different sensor systems were used ...
According to www.dxomark.com the rank for sharpness is: Canon > Nikon > Tamron, but Nikon and Canon/Tamron were tested on different cameras..

I was using www.opticallimits.com/ (= www.photozone.de) tests results sometimes before digital era ...

Last edited by locustella : Wednesday 3rd October 2018 at 13:16.
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