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Canon vs Nikon - entry level.

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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 00:24   #26
Apodidae49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by locustella View Post
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 (FX)
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) and probably without image stabilization. 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:
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/SLR-Camera-Lenses/ci/274/N/4288584247
(I don't know why, but this links doesn't work, is being redirected to a nonsense webpage)

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.

500 mm mirror lenses are cheapper, small and very light, but they have usually only one aperture, no autofocus, produce images with bagel-shaped unsharp elements and dark corners. But I can't find ones with Canon or Nikon mounts ...
Thank you for your input but much of my birding IS from hides and my budget is not that great!
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 00:35   #27
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(my budget is 0.000 from many years) 300, 500 and 600 mm reflex (mirror) lenses are cheaper, something like three times shorter than "classical" lenses and and very light, but they have usually only one fixed aperture, no autofocus, produce images with donut-shaped unsharp elements and dark corners. But I can't find ones with Canon or Nikon mounts ... Only Opteka and Bower mirror lenses with T-mount for many camera types (?), strangely cheap, even below $100, and 300 mm Rokinon and Samyang reflex lenses for Canon, also cheap, but not so much. Probably image quality is not ideal for such price, but I don't know. Many years ago Minolta (currently Sony) had mirror 500 mm, those times the only one mirror lens with AF. Here are example images taken about 18 years ago with that lens, without hide. Dark corners are visible in the second image, donut bokeh in two last images:
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 03:42   #28
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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.
The 35mm f/1.8 is a great lens for DX. Small light great IQ and fast. Great general purpose. If you don't really shoot wide angle (it is its own art), some people will just use a 35mm and either walk a few steps closer or a few steps back and skip the short zoom. Same idea as just using your iPhone for that same stuff.

The 18-105, while takes ok images (not great, but ok), is way too short for birds. Even from a hide. It also does not get very good reviews. Maybe you could at least get the 18-200 DX VR, if not the older 18-300 DX VR? Or the 55-300 DX VR?

I guess I keep stumbling on the premise that the upgrade to the DSLR is for bird photography, so I don't see why getting a DSLR but with an inappropriate lens is worth any money.

Let's throw some math at this. Let's say you have a 2' bird at 100'. Using a right triangle, 2 * tan-1 (1 / 100) = 7.16*. Looking at a FoV table (https://www.nikonians.org/reviews/fov-tables), you find that for DX a 180mm lens has a 7.4* FoV, so that's what you need to get a full-frame shot. If the bird is only 1' wide, then you have 3.6* and need 400mm on DX (not 400mm equivalent, but 400mm native). You could play around with the distance (100') and bird size (1' - 2', 4", etc.) to adjust to whatever your actual hide is like.

Another way to think about it is an 8x42 binocular will be about 7.5* - 8* field of view, so right around that 180mm (actual focal length) lens size on DX. If the birds you're looking at only fill about 1/2 the 8x binocular view, you probably want closer to 300mm actual (450mm equivalent) lenses. If they only fill about 1/4 of the binocular, you want 600mm actual.

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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 08:31   #29
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I find it really odd when people say things like '300mm is too short for bird photography'. Are the photos I posted earlier in this thread not 'bird photography'? They were all taken with a 300mm lens (none of them in a hide) in a wide range of conditions. There are birds in flight, small birds in bushes, birds in poor light, larger birds at a distance etc. These are the sort of pictures that are possible with a modern, fairly cheap 300mm zoom lens. Saying things like '300mm is too short for bird photography' is misinformation. It may not be your preference and I'm well aware that a longer lens will get you closer but to suggest that it's not possible to get pleasing photos with 300mm (and with this lens very easily) is simply not true.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 08:58   #30
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Originally Posted by marcsantacurz View Post
The 35mm f/1.8 is a great lens for DX. Small light great IQ and fast. Great general purpose. If you don't really shoot wide angle (it is its own art), some people will just use a 35mm and either walk a few steps closer or a few steps back and skip the short zoom. Same idea as just using your iPhone for that same stuff.

The 18-105, while takes ok images (not great, but ok), is way too short for birds. Even from a hide. It also does not get very good reviews. Maybe you could at least get the 18-200 DX VR, if not the older 18-300 DX VR? Or the 55-300 DX VR?

I guess I keep stumbling on the premise that the upgrade to the DSLR is for bird photography, so I don't see why getting a DSLR but with an inappropriate lens is worth any money.

Let's throw some math at this. Let's say you have a 2' bird at 100'. Using a right triangle, 2 * tan-1 (1 / 100) = 7.16*. Looking at a FoV table (https://www.nikonians.org/reviews/fov-tables), you find that for DX a 180mm lens has a 7.4* FoV, so that's what you need to get a full-frame shot. If the bird is only 1' wide, then you have 3.6* and need 400mm on DX (not 400mm equivalent, but 400mm native). You could play around with the distance (100') and bird size (1' - 2', 4", etc.) to adjust to whatever your actual hide is like.

Another way to think about it is an 8x42 binocular will be about 7.5* - 8* field of view, so right around that 180mm (actual focal length) lens size on DX. If the birds you're looking at only fill about 1/2 the 8x binocular view, you probably want closer to 300mm actual (450mm equivalent) lenses. If they only fill about 1/4 of the binocular, you want 600mm actual.

Marc
You’re missing the point, which is the opportunity to get a decent DSLR for a good price (£350) with a good all-round lens, which then gives a bit of wriggle room to get a long lens for birding.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 14:05   #31
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They were all taken with a 300mm lens
But where they were taken ? Some species look exotic, maybe they have longer escape distance than most of European birds living outside of parks, zoos, highly populated areas ? And what you were wearing ?
To photograph a bird of size of sparrow with 300 mm lens, you have to get closer to a distance of 4.34 m (https://darekk.com/calculator/). Providing that length of the sparrow is 15 cm and it takes 50% of the 22.3 mm sensor length. This is not so easy.
In case of 400 and 600 mm it is 5.78 and 8.67 m respectively.

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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 14:24   #32
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But where they were taken ? Some species look exotic, maybe they have longer escape distance than most of European birds living outside of parks, zoos, highly populated areas ? And what you were wearing ?
To photograph a bird of size of sparrow with 300 mm lens, you have to get closer to a distance of 4.34 m (https://darekk.com/calculator/). Providing that length of the sparrow is 15 cm and it takes 50% of the 22.3 mm sensor length. This is not so easy.
In case of 400 and 600 mm it is 5.78 and 8.67 m respectively.
The first set were mostly taken within one mile of where I live in Scotland (except the tropicbird, which wasn't particularly close). The second set were taken in China, in a variety of conditions but mostly in less populated forest areas.

They were all photographed easily and straightforwardly with no special techniques and all as part of regular birding. I'd love to be able to tell you it's all down to hours of effort and great skill on my part but it isn't. It's just a good 300mm lens for bird photography.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 14:31   #33
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Many years ago I was using 75-300 mm Minolta zoom and it was rather impossible to approach anything wild.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 14:52   #34
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Of course the place where the photographer lives or will be shooting needs to be taken into consideration. Birds in tropical places and along heavy migrational routes that pass by or through urban areas are much more accustomed to people being close by and will not fly off as readily. Some tropical spots, the birds are downright apathetic towards people - where I live in Florida, I can routinely walk up to birds within arm's reach without them moving - and no behavioral changes - I can stand 5 feet from a heron or egret who will go on fishing and wading around without even looking up at me. So of course, 300mm is plenty for shooting all kinds of species - even 200mm is fine. I bought an extended kit travel zoom, 18-135mm, and tested it on my crop sensor body just to make sure the focus and IQ were solid, by taking it around the wetlands and shooting birds and birds in flight. So statements about a required focal length for birding need to be taken in a broad sense, based on where you shoot.

Back to the original topic, I'd throw out a few other possibilities if you're looking for a somewhat budget birding kit but want larger sensors and interchangeable lenses...you might shop around a bit for Pentax DSLR or Sony DSLR/SLT kits used or new...both mounts are not as popular as Canon and Nikon, but that also often renders them cheaper when buying used. The sensors are mostly Sony-made, just as in Nikon cameras, and are solid performers, and both kits have lenses available from 300mm to 500mm primes and zooms up to 500mm or 600mm. Hitting the budget should be possible with either kit. If you're going to be wanting to do bird-in-flight photography, you'd want to probably avoid Pentax - not that they can't do it, just that they're not known as the best AF-C cameras...older Sony models will be OK, newer ones much better.

You might also consider some of the newer mirrorless camera systems - same APS-C sensors, generally small and light bodies, and though lens selection is more limited and often more expensive, it would still be possible to hit around the same price range with older bodies. Continuous and standard focus on most new systems are quite fast and can match entry DSLRs, sometimes even better than some entry DSLRs due to the mirrorless' on-sensor PDAF focusing systems that have dozens to hundreds more focus points to work with on tracking. Sony's A6000, A6300, and A6500 are APS-C sensor bodies all with good focus tracking, Fuji's X-T2 should be cheaper now that the X-T3 debuted and will do pretty well with continuous focus, and a few M4:3 sensor bodies, notably Olympus' EM series that have on-sensor PDAF, will be capable. Some of these bodies can also work pretty well with adapted lenses - notably the Sony A6300 and 6500 mate quite well to Sigma's MC11 Canon-EOS mount adapters to use Canon's lens collection with pretty solid focus, and the LA-EA3 adapter to use some of Sony Alpha-mount lenses pretty well...giving some cheaper options to get reach when you need it.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 16:11   #35
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I find it really odd when people say things like '300mm is too short for bird photography'. Are the photos I posted earlier in this thread not 'bird photography'? They were all taken with a 300mm lens (none of them in a hide) in a wide range of conditions. There are birds in flight, small birds in bushes, birds in poor light, larger birds at a distance etc. These are the sort of pictures that are possible with a modern, fairly cheap 300mm zoom lens. Saying things like '300mm is too short for bird photography' is misinformation. It may not be your preference and I'm well aware that a longer lens will get you closer but to suggest that it's not possible to get pleasing photos with 300mm (and with this lens very easily) is simply not true.
You are correct that a 300mm can take great bird photos. Back in the day, I was even doing some on my d90 + 55-200mm. I am basing my recommendations on the OP's original post in a different thread (https://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=367955) where he says

Quote:
Up to now I have been using a LUMIX FZ72 Megazoom for my (non too-serious) birding forays but the small sensor and massive 60x zoom donít make comfortable bedfellows.

If I buy a DSLR, like an Eos 200D, and add a EF 75-300 zoom will I be able to get pictures that will crop for decent results?

Iím not in the market for a 500mm that costs thousands but I would like to be able to get some nice studies from crops as well as do some good all-round photography.
The FZ72 is a 20 - 1200mm equivalent camera. He says that the small sensor is a problem at high zoom, not that high zoom is a problem. So, I read that as he wants the reach but with better quality. So while I agree that you can do bird photography with 300mm, I did not think that would address the underlying need.

A 300mm lens on a Canon 1.6x is 480mm. You would need another 2.5x crop to get to 1200. That would make the 200d (or other 24MP) into a 9.6 MP (say 3098x3098). That's passable if you won't enlarge too much. Screen viewing should be ok. I, personally, find raw files crop better than jpeg at that amount mostly because of the in-camera noise reduction. And you'll need to keep the ISO pretty low or the ISO artifacts will become an issue at that magnification. I suspect handheld or monopod, even with VR, will not give a large percentage of truly sharp images at a 2.5x crop but you will get some.

In one of my early responses, I suggest taking the existing FZ72 and shooting it as if you only have 450mm (equivalent) of reach. See what it is like. Or maybe assume that you can crop another 1.5x off a DSLR and shoot it as if you only have 675mm of reach. I'd try to decide what reach I'm comfortable with given where and what I shoot and back into a DSLR combo that way rather than trying to find a deal first.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 16:57   #36
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Digiscoping allows easy photographing without a hide. This is why it was invented - because lenses are too week for bird photography in most of cases. A kit lens + telescope corresponds to lens with focal length larger than 1000 mm. But quality of such images is poor.
Many years ago almost only 300 mm lenses were used.
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A 300mm lens on a Canon 1.6x is 480mm. (...)
Today with small APS sensor like 22.3x14.9 mm they give same angle as 484 mm lens for 24x36 mm film, 4oo mm corresponds to 645 mm, 500 mm to 807 mm, 600 mm to 968 mm.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 17:27   #37
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A 300mm lens on a Canon 1.6x is 480mm. You would need another 2.5x crop to get to 1200. That would make the 200d (or other 24MP) into a 9.6 MP (say 3098x3098). That's passable if you won't enlarge too much. Screen viewing should be ok.
That was an incorrect calculation. Crop is a linear factor and MP is a square area. A 2.5x image crop is a 6.26x reduction in area (MP), so a 24MP camera becomes 3.84 MP camera. That is getty low, even for screen viewing. On a camera with an AA filter, it will be hard, I think, to get a really sharp photo at that much crop.

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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 18:29   #38
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I find it really odd when people say things like '300mm is too short for bird photography'. Are the photos I posted earlier in this thread not 'bird photography'? They were all taken with a 300mm lens (none of them in a hide) in a wide range of conditions. There are birds in flight, small birds in bushes, birds in poor light, larger birds at a distance etc. These are the sort of pictures that are possible with a modern, fairly cheap 300mm zoom lens. Saying things like '300mm is too short for bird photography' is misinformation. It may not be your preference and I'm well aware that a longer lens will get you closer but to suggest that it's not possible to get pleasing photos with 300mm (and with this lens very easily) is simply not true.
Completely agree
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 18:59   #39
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Originally Posted by marcsantacurz View Post
The FZ72 is a 20 - 1200mm equivalent camera. He says that the small sensor is a problem at high zoom, not that high zoom is a problem. So, I read that as he wants the reach but with better quality. So while I agree that you can do bird photography with 300mm, I did not think that would address the underlying need.
Agreed. The OP should take a longer walk with a DSLR + 70-300 lens and see whether this is really the goal: tiny birds in the viewfinder, shutter noise, heavy in comparison to the FZ72, no macro capability... there are real trade-offs. - I can recommend the Nikon V2 as a lightweight alternative.
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 19:55   #40
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Agreed. The OP should take a longer walk with a DSLR + 70-300 lens and see whether this is really the goal: tiny birds in the viewfinder, shutter noise, heavy in comparison to the FZ72, no macro capability... there are real trade-offs. - I can recommend the Nikon V2 as a lightweight alternative.
The DSLR/70-300 combinations mentioned on this thread are well under a kilo in weight combined, so not that much more than most superzooms (and less than some). About as much as a 42mm pair of binoculars, in fact. The 70-300 mentioned also has pretty much silent focusing so is a relatively quiet set up, even with some shutter noise from the camera. It also seems to take nice close-ups:
https://img.photographyblog.com/revi...g_ed_vr_66.jpg
Maybe not such real trade offs?
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Old Wednesday 3rd October 2018, 20:43   #41
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The DSLR/70-300 combinations mentioned on this thread are well under a kilo in weight combined, so not that much more than most superzooms (and less than some). About as much as a 42mm pair of binoculars, in fact. The 70-300 mentioned also has pretty much silent focusing so is a relatively quiet set up, even with some shutter noise from the camera. [...] Maybe not such real trade offs?
I had already agreed in an earlier post that the Nikkor 70-300 AF-P DX lens is a very nice, sharp and cheap lens. In particular as it works on the FT1 with a V2.

It is not only about reach and IQ, also about money and preferences. I've had two repairs of broken shutters (Š Euro 150). It can save money to use an electronic shutter. You are right about the weight of the 70-300 set-up. I meant the 150-600 teles, none of which is significantly below 2kg.
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Old Thursday 4th October 2018, 10:43   #42
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So, after loads of advice and on-line research I’ve discovered that trying to get a used d7200 is akin to finding rocking-horse dung, nigh on impossible, and anyway it looks to be out of my budget range. The latest idea is a d5600 and a 70-300mm DX VR ED from a really good camera shop in Chester (or from Amazon).

Anyone with anything positive/negative to say about the d5600 please feel free. The argument about 300mm for birding is about played out and I’m with Andrew Whitehouse in that respect. Nothing to stop me going for a long Tamron lens at a future date.

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Old Thursday 4th October 2018, 21:17   #43
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Thanks everyone for your input. I’ve placed an order for a D5600 with an 18-55 kit lens and a 70-300 DX VR ED lens. Both are new and costing me a few quid less than the John Lewis kit at £799 which included the same 2 lenses but with a D5300 body. I’m pleased with the price and also with the amount of advice I’ve been given on the forum. I could have probably got the same kit with a used D7200 for around another 50-60 quid but getting hold of a used D7200 isn’t that easy.

I intend to get the latest SanDisk Extreme UHC SD card that boasts 300mb transfer speed just to keep the outfit motoring along nicely.

I’ll be back when I need advice about how to use the flipping things properly!
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Old Thursday 4th October 2018, 22:10   #44
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I intend to get the latest SanDisk Extreme UHC SD card that boasts 300mb transfer speed just to keep the outfit motoring along nicely.
I hope you'll enjoy your camera. But I believe the D5600 uses UHS-I cards. While faster cards are downwards compatible, an UHS-I card like the Sandisk Extreme Pro with a write speed of 90MB/s or so should suffice.
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Old Thursday 4th October 2018, 22:55   #45
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I hope you'll enjoy your camera. But I believe the D5600 uses UHS-I cards. While faster cards are downwards compatible, an UHS-I card like the Sandisk Extreme Pro with a write speed of 90MB/s or so should suffice.
Thanks, thatís saved me around £40. Itís twice as fast as the current one I have in my LUMIX.
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Old Friday 5th October 2018, 00:41   #46
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You should get great autofocus performance with the newest d5600 plus those AF-P lenses. These newer cameras also let you shoot at pretty high ISO with ok results. I'm sure you'll get a lot of great results!

You will want to google the settings to use for wildlife or bird photography. Thinks like autofocus mode, spot vs area selection, picture control, sharpening, etc. The main downside w/ the 5000 series vs the 7000 series is the lack of the U1+U2 preset control, so on the d5600 you'll need to go into the menus to change things. You could maybe try the "sports" scene mode to get started for birds (I don't use these scene modes much except the "lo key" one like twice a year).

Post some images in the gallery or a new post when you get the chance, I'm sure we'd like to know how it works out for you.
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Old Monday 8th October 2018, 08:42   #47
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Camera and lens on their way, ordered lens hoods for each lens and a UV filter for both and got the SanDisk Extreme 95mb card for it. Currently watching a crop of Lowepro Slingshot AW 202’s on eBay to keep everything in one place. In the interest of general photography, I’m thinking of getting a spare battery and the DX 10-20 VR lens.

I have a future eye on the Tamron 150-600. I presume that Tamron have built some kind of image stabilisation/vibration reduction into a lens that long?
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Old Monday 8th October 2018, 09:02   #48
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Originally Posted by Apodidae49 View Post
.....I have a future eye on the Tamron 150-600. I presume that Tamron have built some kind of image stabilisation/vibration reduction into a lens that long?
Yep, but make sure you get the G2 model - well worth it




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Old Monday 8th October 2018, 09:15   #49
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Originally Posted by Chosun Juan View Post
Yep, but make sure you get the G2 model - well worth it




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Thanks Chosun, Iíll bear that in mind.
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Old Monday 8th October 2018, 09:27   #50
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Also, as DX means that zooms have a +X crop factor I suppose this also applies to the bottom end of the zoom and a 10-20 DX becomes, say, a 15-30 on the camera?
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