Rainy day here in New Hampshire, but the UPS driver was nice enough to drop off a EF 500 f/4 II.
And...very first photo:
Rainy day here in New Hampshire, but the UPS driver was nice enough to drop off a EF 500 f/4 II.
And...very first photo:
Thanks....
As for next task, I am thinking I take a lot of pictures
As for "best bodies"....I think you are dead on. I did not summarize, but looking through the EOLs, everyone had 2-3 bodies. It interested me that some of their glass was old, but all the bodies were new. I'll try to dig it up, but I did see a reasonable attempt to evaluate the "best" wildlife body. I didn't feel the need to dwell as the conclusion was the 5DIV.
But, ultimately, I am seeing 1DXIIs, 5DsRs, 5DIVs, and 7DIIs in a lot of the kits from pro wildlife photographers. As for myself, I think I'll either rent or buy a second body about the time I do something pretty major and will not want to be changing lenses. But, for now, a one body system has been working just fine for me.
Thanks Stephen. That is exactly what I did for years. There are a lot of pictures to take out there and only a few need specific lenses like a super tele. It is a fun hobby and it is good that there are a lot of ways to evolve and grow.
Jonathan Huyer
www.huyerperspectives.com
Thanks Joel and Jonathan!
I think BillW is also still using the 500 Mk1. Safe to say, between the three of you, I've seen a lot of great images on the forum taken with that lens.
So, I promised some analysis, again for those interested. Most of this start with some basic geometry (doesn't mean I didn't mess it up, but in the 9th grade I would have nailed it). But imagining two right angle triangles formed by the direct line in the frame center and a second line that goes to the frame edge that intersect at the focal point, you create two similar triangles. Using geometry and the similarities of these triangles, I created the following formula in excel:
Horizontal size of subject = tan((2*atan(18 mm/focal length in mm))/2)*distance to subject *2
Vertical size of subject = tan((2*atan(12 mm/focal length in mm))/2)*distance to subject *2
So you can place with this data in a lot of ways, one, as soon as you know the size of the horizontal and vertical subject at a given distance, you can calculate the pixels per inch (ppi) of that subject for different resolution sensors. I hear different resolutions that are desired, but typically 300 ppi for high quality is a good standard for resolving details and then the human eye can resolve 75 to 150 ppi depending on the distance.
For example, for my 5DIV:
Another way of looking at this is, this is what "20% more reach" is actually buying you. For small birds where you want to resolve as much detail as possible (300 ppi), a 500 mm lens you need to be 26 ft or closer and a 600 mm lens, 31 ft or closer. And 20% of 26 ft is 5.2 ft...so the math is working.
My bird feeder is ~30 ft away from one of my vantage spots and ~20 ft from another, so this actually worked in slight favor of the 600 f/4 II.
But, lenses are not as advertised. Bryan at the bottom of his spec page for each lens lists the distance to target and size of the targets. Well, rework the formulas and solve for the focal length and you get this table:
EDIT. I updated this from the original table. It dawned on me that Bryan measures subject to camera sensor, which includes both the distance from sensor to focal point and focal point to subject. This new table backs out the sensor to focal point (ie. focal length) from Bryan's distance for the above formulas.
I am entertained that Bryan is measuring things down to the mm, but those calculated focal lengths for the 500 f/4 II and 600 f/4 II seem about right as manufacturers have a tendency to round up. For consistency, look at the effect of the 1.4xTC, it is somewhere between 1.36 and 1.37x for everything but the 100-400 II (not sure why). I think Bryan is being very consistent in his set up so these numbers mean something at least relatively. Another calibration point for me is that you can look at the pics taken with the 150-600S @600 and the 400 DO II @ 560 on page 3 of this thread, and the 400 DO is only very slightly wider framing. That is consistent with 532mm vs 542 mm above. Of course, I could photograph a ruler or something at a known distance and look at the PPI and figure this out, but this is looking good enough for me.
Big takeaways:
- The 500 II lens and 600 II lenses are actually 490 and 585 mm, respectively.
- Each lens is a bit less than advertised, but the 100-400 II with TC is suffering the worst.
- The 1.4xTC is actually about 1.365x
- Despite all this, the 600 mm is still essentially 20% more reach.
So, using these calculated focal lengths, I wanted to see the range of each lens for different subjects.
Instead of PPI, I thought about filling different percentages of the frame with this table. Essentially, using cropping to zoom as we often do. I tend to not like to drop below a subject filling up 1/3 of the vertical frame. Less than that and the IQ really takes a hit, IMO. Then, you do not want to fill the entire frame with a subject, as that is just a bad picture/composition. So, I picked 30-80% of the vertical frame. And, of course, my subject heights are approximate. I just wanted to ballpark, but I did make an effort to find different real subject heights.
A few things that interested me
- Optical zooms are remarkably versatile, as we all know....but
- Zooming by cropping with a prime can be almost as effective as an optical zoom. Of course, final IQ comes into play here especially if you want to make a big print you will want to minimize cropping, but with sharper lenses and higher resolutions cameras...this gets interesting. As an example, the 100-400L for a 10 ft high standing bear covers distances of 52 ft to 700 ft. The 400 DO II: distance of 204 ft to 739 ft.
- Again, here is your "20% reach" for the 500 and 600 mm lenses. Again, for a 10 ft high standing bear, the 500 f/4 II will cover distances from 255 ft to 931 ft. The 600 f/4 II: 305 ft to 1,111 ft. Different, yes. And I am sure some will appreciate the real world difference. But staring at this and wondering about my usage, I did wonder if I'd prefer having the shorter end instead of the longer. Granted, if I have a second body with a 70-200 II on it, if a walking bear at 250 ft suddenly stands, I can switch lenses. Anyway, like I said, the 500/600 are more alike than different, in my current opinion.
- In addition to bokeh, I then the reach of the 600 mm is likely most acutely felt for small birds.
- BTW, resolving fine details with 300 ppi disappears pretty rapidly....I need a 220 MP sensor!
- Finally, notice how 80% for the 100-400 II @ 100 is 3 ft, 400 DO is 10 ft, 500 f/4 II is 13 ft, and 600 f/4 II is 15 ft? The MFD for each lens is 3.2 ft, 10.8 ft, 12.3 ft, and 14.8 ft? Coincidence????
So, there you go. I wanted to share some of the calcs I did in coming to this decision. So far there haven't been a lot of birds at my feeder and I fly out for a trip tomorrow. But I am liking the addition of the 500 f/4 II to my kit.
Thanks,
Brant
Last edited by Kayaker72; 06-28-2018 at 11:26 PM.
It will surprise you with a 2X converter as well but you may need AF micro adjustment to really the get the most from it.
Terrific analysis... and obviously the sign of someone who has full-blown "L-Disease" (BTW you're in great company here). I bought the 500 primarily for bears (in case you hadn't already guessed). On our latest trip, one guy had a 600 and he missed a few shots due to having too much reach and as such he couldn't keep the whole bear in the frame. My rule of thumb is about 30 metres for a full-frame shot with the 500, and your table seems to bear that out (pun intended).
Jonathan Huyer
www.huyerperspectives.com
Well done. Now to do the calc w/ the 5dSr . Just kidding.
When Brant and I did some shooting w/ the 400 and a 2x I found it too long on several occasions. Found the caterpillars where moving too fast.
If you see me with a wrench, call 911
Thanks Everyone.
Back home this week. So far birds haven't been too cooperative. I have rattled off these:
But this chipmunk was fun...
Thanks for viewing! Brant
Last edited by Kayaker72; 06-28-2018 at 11:35 PM.