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AF-S Nikkor 200-500mm f5.6E ED VR (1 Viewer)

Neil

Well-known member
This is what an Australian Pelican looks like as it passes over my head. Equivalent of 400 mm.
Neil.

Nikon D7200 and Nikon 200-500/5.6mm
 

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MalR

Well-known member
Excellent pics, Neil. I know you have also used the 300mm f4 PF lens with the 1.4 TC, which is what I use on the D7200. I would be interested in your opinion on how the 200-500 compares to that set-up.

Malcolm
 

Neil

Well-known member
Excellent pics, Neil. I know you have also used the 300mm f4 PF lens with the 1.4 TC, which is what I use on the D7200. I would be interested in your opinion on how the 200-500 compares to that set-up.

Malcolm

The 300/4 PF is a lot lighter so for walking around it's easier to handle. The range of the zoom is it's advantage. It's useful when shooting from hides when you have a mix of large and small birds. The 300/4 is a little faster when shooting birds in flight.
I haven't used the 300/4 since I got the 200-500/5.6. I like the extra reach and flexibility and don't see much quality difference. I do use if mostly on a tripod though.
Neil.
 

MalR

Well-known member
The 300/4 PF is a lot lighter so for walking around it's easier to handle. The range of the zoom is it's advantage. It's useful when shooting from hides when you have a mix of large and small birds. The 300/4 is a little faster when shooting birds in flight.
I haven't used the 300/4 since I got the 200-500/5.6. I like the extra reach and flexibility and don't see much quality difference. I do use if mostly on a tripod though.
Neil.

Thanks for that.:t: I am tempted by the zoom for those occasions when I know I won't be walking too far. As you say, it offers a lot of flexibility. Thanks again.

Malcolm
 

opticoholic

Well-known member
Hello,
If some of you are trying to decide between the Nikon 200-500mm and other affordable hand-holdable Nikon options, you might find Brad Hill's blog entries interesting. See the November 20, 2015 entry comparing the Nikon 200-500mm f5.6E, Sigma Sport 150-600mm f5-6.3 and the Nikkor 80-400mm f4.5-5.6. Of course Brad is only 1 reviewer evaluating 1 sample of each lens, and he is perhaps more of a big animal photographer than a bird photographer, but he does write some of the most detailed hands-on comparisons you will find. He also has entries commenting on the new 300mm f/4E PF and more expensive latest 400/500/600mm options.

http://www.naturalart.ca/voice/blog.html

Dave
 
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Paul Tavares

Well-known member
Hello,
If some of you are trying to decide between the Nikon 200-500mm and other affordable hand-holdable Nikon options, you might find Brad Hill's blog entries interesting. See the November 20, 2015 entry comparing the Nikon 200-500mm f5.6E, Sigma Sport 150-600mm f5-6.3 and the Nikkor 80-400mm f4.5-5.6. Of course Brad is only 1 reviewer evaluating 1 sample of each lens, and he is perhaps more of a big animal photographer than a bird photographer, but he does write some of the most detailed hands-on comparisons you will find. He also has entries commenting on the new 300mm f/4E PF and more expensive latest 400/500/600mm options.

http://www.naturalart.ca/voice/blog.html

Dave

Dave, thanks for posting the link for the test of the three lenses. I use the Nikkor 80-400mm with a D5500 and have not really been happy with the VR performance. I was using the Normal mode. After reading the review of the VR performance I decided to try the Active mode. Much better and a noticeable improvement. The D5500 also has a neat implementation of minimum shutter speed when using aperture priority. It's a sliding scale with five positions. With the Active mode I've been able to slide the minimum shutter speed to the minimum slider position and still get better performance than I was getting before with the Normal VR and the shutter speed in the middle or maximum slider position.

Paul
 

opticoholic

Well-known member
Hi Paul,
I think the D5500 lacks the AF fine tune function, but if you ever upgrade your body, you might find AF fine-tuning can help improve your results a little bit; it did for me. I was rather surprised that both my D7100 and my D7200 benefited from the AF fine tune feature on both lenses I use. Not always noticeable, but I think it definitely increases the success rate a little for me.

Dave
 

Neil

Well-known member
Hi Paul,
I think the D5500 lacks the AF fine tune function, but if you ever upgrade your body, you might find AF fine-tuning can help improve your results a little bit; it did for me. I was rather surprised that both my D7100 and my D7200 benefited from the AF fine tune feature on both lenses I use. Not always noticeable, but I think it definitely increases the success rate a little for me.

Dave

Dave,
I noticed yesterday shooting the 200-500/5.6 on the D7200 that the area of sharp focus seemed mostly to be just behind the bird, but also just including the bird at f8. How much adjustment did you need to do?
Neil.
 

Neil

Well-known member
I took the 200-500/5.6 out to the mudflats yesterday for the first time. It gave me some nice reach on the D7200 , although still not enough for a Peregrine chasing gulls at about 500 metres. I used it without the lens hood as I was in the hide and didn't want the front of the lens protruding.
Seemed to do a good job but not quite as fast getting on birds in flight as my 500/4 and 300/4. Nice to have the zoom though.
Neil.

Hong Kong
11th December 2015
 

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opticoholic

Well-known member
Dave,
I noticed yesterday shooting the 200-500/5.6 on the D7200 that the area of sharp focus seemed mostly to be just behind the bird, but also just including the bird at f8. How much adjustment did you need to do?
Neil.

Neil,
I do not own the 200-500. I was commenting in general about the possible need for AF fine tuning with all Nikon telephotos, because I have found it necessary to apply a positive +12 or +8 on my 300 f/4D + 1.4TC and 500 f/4 VR lenses, respectively. I recently decided to start using the FocusTune software and focus target and I like the way it works. It is really tedious to gather all the frames in a consistent way for all the lenses I use, with and without teleconverters, etc. After all that work I really appreciate the software to help me evaluate the results. Of course, with a zoom lens, the best AF adjustment might vary with focal length (even more gathering of frames) but for bird photography, I would prioritize the long end of the zoom range.

Dave
 

Mevcrna

Member
Fine tune

Dave, thanks for posting the link for the test of the three lenses. I use the Nikkor 80-400mm with a D5500 and have not really been happy with the VR performance. I was using the Normal mode. After reading the review of the VR performance I decided to try the Active mode. Much better and a noticeable improvement. The D5500 also has a neat implementation of minimum shutter speed when using aperture priority. It's a sliding scale with five positions. With the Active mode I've been able to slide the minimum shutter speed to the minimum slider position and still get better performance than I was getting before with the Normal VR and the shutter speed in the middle or maximum slider position.

Paul

I haven't used it yet, but the sigma with it fine tuning dock may have the advantage here.
Mike
 

capdegat

Well-known member
I've just returned from Florida trip with 200-500 lens received 3 days before I went .
Two things to say :
1 very happy with lens
2 anybody who can't get good shots in Florida doesn't know how to use a camera .They actually walk up to you or sit waiting for their pic to be taken !
 

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Neil

Well-known member
I've just returned from Florida trip with 200-500 lens received 3 days before I went .
Two things to say :
1 very happy with lens
2 anybody who can't get good shots in Florida doesn't know how to use a camera .They actually walk up to you or sit waiting for their pic to be taken !

Lovely images. Looks like you had good light too. I love Florida in the Spring too. It is like the birds ignore the people.
Neil.
 

bcl05

Well-known member
I've had mine for 2 weeks. I'm very happy so far. All taken with a d7200.
 

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IanMcG

Well-known member
I have been putting off for some time getting into DSLR, previously sticking with digiscoping or high zoom bridge cameras more recently. I had convinced myself that I would be steering toward the Sigma 150-600 Contemporary (probably with a Nikon D7200, which I don't yet own). Having read the many well-informed opinions and excellent pictures on this forum I have had to think again. Does anyone have any thoughts either way?
 

capdegat

Well-known member
Ian
read photography life for full reviews of competing lenses. Sigma sports wins but is more expensive and heavier followed by nikon and the others trail behind.I had a tamron but cant disagree that my nikon is better
 

flanken

C-GU11
I have been putting off for some time getting into DSLR, previously sticking with digiscoping or high zoom bridge cameras more recently. I had convinced myself that I would be steering toward the Sigma 150-600 Contemporary (probably with a Nikon D7200, which I don't yet own). Having read the many well-informed opinions and excellent pictures on this forum I have had to think again. Does anyone have any thoughts either way?

My opinion would be to go with a good copy of the Sigma 150-600mm Contemporary. Having tried them all, both Sigma 150-600s and the Nikon 200-500 are superb lenses, although I suspect there is a fair bit of sample variation among all of them, which may explain why there isn't a lot of consistency across the various online reviews.

I rented both the Sigma Contemporary and the Nikon 200-500, and compared them side-by-side a couple of months ago; the Nikon was a little better in the corners (especially full-frame corners), and had a more stable in-viewfinder VR image, but the Sigma was equally sharp in the center, lighter, cheaper, had more reach, and was customizable using the USB dock. I wound up buying a new Sigma Contemporary, and was pleasantly surprised to find that the one I bought had sharper corners than the one I rented.

Later, I rented a Sigma 150-600 Sport and compared it to my Contemporary, and found image quality and AF speed virtually indistinguishable. The Sport is a lot heavier, and has a more robust build, but the Contemporary also feels very well-made. Both have very effective image stabilization, and I'm able to get consistently sharp shots down to 1/160s at 600mm handheld.

So I'm pretty satisfied with the Sigma 150-600 Contemporary as my long lens of choice, but they are all very good telephoto lenses, and definitely better than the telephoto zooms that came before them (e.g., the Sigma 50-500 OS).

Here are some comparison images I shot with the Sigma 150-600 C and the Nikon 200-500 when I rented them; as the filenames reflect, these were on both a D810 and a D5500 (which has a very similar sensor to the D7200), and also compared to my other telephoto lenses, the 500mm f/4D AF-S II and the 300mm f/4E PF VR:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B4M7Ie_2T_HgZ0tBcjg3eUozd0E
 

IanMcG

Well-known member
Flanken, thanks very much for your reply, very useful info to consider and thank you too
Les - I will certainly read the reviews that you suggest.
 

capdegat

Well-known member
I've resisted the ff call for quite a bit .A couple of pics from d810 ( nos 21 and 24 only with this body ) with 200-500. only received yesterday and I have to say I should have got one sooner ! Lens seems a better fit with d810 than I expected.
 

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