Thank you for your useful comments regarding the new Nikkor 200-500 mm
I agree wholeheartedly with everything you wrote.
In recent times I have virtually replaced all my birding lenses and now have
what I consider is the ultimate combination - these lenses (and cameras) are so
good that I doubt very much whether I will ever have to buy any more gear in my
lifetime. The most important issue in future in future will be being there. Two
very, very important words.
I traded in the latest version of the 80-400 on the new 200-500 and in a word,
brilliant, I can even handhold it the VR is so good and in my copy, the
autofocus is spot on at 500 mm.
As you probably know from my website, I do a lot of photography of small bush
birds - most of the Australian ones are there already. However, as you noted,
quickly homing in on a small subject with a 500 mm lens is not easy - that
fraction of a second dithering often means getting the picture or not. Enter
the new Nikkor 300mm f/4 PF lens - one of the best lenses Nikon have ever made
and some say equal in quality to their legendary 300 mm f/2.8.
Last year we spent a lot of time on Eyre Peninsula chasing Blue-breasted
Fairy-Wrens. All that time, I used the 300 f/4 PF, often with a 1.4 extender, a
very LIGHT and manoeuvrable combination. It even works well with the 1.7x
extender (= 510 mm). I also had the big 500 f/4 lens with me, but where did it
remain? in its bag. I find that big lens too heavy to hand hold, so it has to
go on a tripod. If you are travelling in a car, often the time it takes to set
up on a tripod is crucial. The outcome of all this is that I have put the 500
f/4 VR up for sale, mainly because the new 200-500 is so much easier to handle,
and even hand hold.
I should qualify my earlier statement - I do know of one item I'll buy as soon
as it becomes available and that is the newly announced D500 camera.
And so it goes on. My wife Pam says to me " I hope you aren't thinking of
buying any more cameras" - and for the moment, I agree.
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