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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 24 Apr 2013 (Wednesday) 11:45
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Lens for full frame & shooting birds...

 
DreDaze
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Apr 24, 2013 18:24 |  #16

a 7D isn't going to solve your problems alone...

first problem i see is your eagle shot was done at 218mm...zoom in to 420mm and you'd be doing better already...hell maybe even to the point you'd get away with just cropping a bit

I'd swap the 70-300L for a 100-400L...every little bit helps...and with the 5DIII firmware update that's going to happen soon using a TC will allow you to retain AF at f8...

a 70-300L with a 1.4TC on a FF= 420mm max....putting that 70-300L on a 7D which won't AF with the TC is going to be just 480mm...not a huge difference

either way you're going to want a lens that gives you 400mm+...and even then you have to actually work to get close to your subjects...it's not just that you have a long lens, and can't point it towards things that are miles away...


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Apr 25, 2013 01:00 |  #17

CyberDyneSystems wrote in post #15863429 (external link)
I came to a 5D3 specifically for birding. I came from a crop body with 10MP, ( 1D3 ) and clearly the 5D3 is out resolving that. As of now, I am shooting it almost exclusively with a 400mm f/5.6L no TC.

It's a superb birding combo!

Now your real problem.

No combination is going to get you good photos when the subject is a dot overhead.

go the the birding forum and look at what is being posted,. and take a look at the stickies at the top of the Bird discussion forum, there is a lot of good info on how to get close to birds.

This !!

I have 5D3 and 1D4 and I chose 5D3 as my weapon to shoot birds and my longest lens is only 300mm and don't have TC but still can get very good photos.

Stop blaming the body, 5D3 is powerful camera for birding and combine it with 400mm f5.6 and you will have superb combo. Plus, hopefully with new firmware it will AF when you add TC to 400mm


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Levina ­ de ­ Ruijter
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Apr 25, 2013 04:16 |  #18

CyberDyneSystems wrote in post #15863429 (external link)
No combination is going to get you good photos when the subject is a dot overhead.

This.

Observe the birds. Find ways to get closer.

I shot birds with a 5D classic and either a 300mm f/4 or 400mm f/5.6 for six months or so last year and it was great. Only reason I bought a 1D II N was the shutter lag of the old 5D (still a great camera!) which made me miss too many shots. So now I'm shooting birds with a 1D II N, waiting for the 5DIII price to drop to a point where I can justify the purchase. It's a terrific combo for bird photography.


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Edwin ­ Herdman
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Apr 25, 2013 06:00 |  #19

Another possibility: Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 OS paired with the EF Extender 2X III for a constant f/5.6 which remains pretty usable. However the newer version of this lens (which reportedly only gains a distance limiter switch, which should have been there from the beginning) is much more expensive than the 2011 release. Downside, aside from heft compared with 70-300mm options, is that the out of focus area quality is sometimes distracting. Still, a very nice lens overall and I've taken many good photos with it.

And indeed you need to get close to birds. It's the only way to get photos. I can be just a few meters away from a bird, using the full 600mm (for this particular lens + TC combo it's reportedly closer to 560mm, before figuring in the crop factor), and still have plenty of area bordering the bird.

My experience upgrading from a 500D to a 7D (both crop cameras) is not going to be very informative for the purpose of comparing the 5D3 with a 7D. I know a lot of people are flogging the "it's just a rumor" horse lately, but this would be a good time to get to grips with close birding technique, and within a few months you might have more future gear choices open to you ;) Personally, if I really wanted to take bird photos, I'm still not absolutely sure I'd quit the 5D3 for the 7D, though you can't typically make up lost detail from better high ISO handling, so I probably would. The 7D should have much better pixel density, and thus more use in good lighting, but oftentimes I'm shooting in shade where the 5D3 should have its own advantage. I guess it partly depends on how good you are with high ISO technique, whether you will be shooting in dark areas, and how many pixels you need.




  
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Inspeqtor
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Apr 25, 2013 07:40 |  #20

Levina de Ruijter wrote in post #15865128 (external link)
This.

Observe the birds. Find ways to get closer.

I shot birds with a 5D classic and either a 300mm f/4 or 400mm f/5.6 for six months or so last year and it was great. Only reason I bought a 1D II N was the shutter lag of the old 5D (still a great camera!) which made me miss too many shots. So now I'm shooting birds with a 1D II N, waiting for the 5DIII price to drop to a point where I can justify the purchase. It's a terrific combo for bird photography.

I am very surprised at your shutter lag comment about the 5D classic. I was not aware of this. I know all P&S cameras have shutter lag which is why I switched back to the DSLR (I own an older Canon Rebel SLR film version body).


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bobbyz
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Apr 25, 2013 08:24 |  #21

400mm f5.6 and 1.4xTC once AF at f8 is available. And learn to get closer.:)


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garbidz
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Apr 25, 2013 12:04 |  #22

I was stunned by the quality the 100-400 IS zoom delivers on 5D II.
Every lens is too short for the bird or too long for you unless you make the real effort, learn to know your subject and your equipment and wait. And wait. And gt cold and wet and wait some more.

There is no such thing that would turn you to an instant bird photographer.
But as I learned during the couple of days, a FF camera with the 100-400 gives you a lot of quality pixels to crop from.


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Levina ­ de ­ Ruijter
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Apr 25, 2013 12:21 |  #23

Inspeqtor wrote in post #15865403 (external link)
I am very surprised at your shutter lag comment about the 5D classic. I was not aware of this.

Why would you be surprised? The 5D is an old camera. It has great IQ but shutter is slow and the outer AF points become useless in low light. So I switched to a 1D II N and my keeper rate went up. :)


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CyberDyneSystems
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Apr 25, 2013 14:07 |  #24

1D series speeds are all amazing, including shutter timing.

The MkII is one of the best bodies for birding ever made. The AF could be set up perfectly for birds in flight.
I don't shoot it as much now, but I still have mine. It helped me out of a lot tough situations when the 1D3 would fall flat on it's face.

the 5D3 is the first body I've shot that has AF which beats the 1DII


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Apr 25, 2013 14:27 |  #25

I use a Sigma 150-500 OS on my 5D3 almost exclusively for wildlife (including birding) and aviation. It's a fantastic quality lens for the price and you'd have to spend a lot more to get a much better lens. Don't think about changing the body, the 5D3 is fantastic for wildlife shooting if you put the right glass on it.


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Tom ­ Reichner
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Apr 25, 2013 15:05 |  #26

Tom Reichner wrote in post #15862509 (external link)
Pete,

If you don't want to shell out the $ for a new supertelephoto, then I think you would benefit enormously from having a 1.6 crop body.

I shoot wildlife with both a full frame 5D and a 1.6 crop 50D, and the 50D gets just about 100% of my bird in flight opportunities.

CyberDyneSystems wrote in post #15863429 (external link)
You ABSOLUTELY should not be talked into considering a different camera for the question you pose!
This is just silliness.

Jake & Pete,

I certainly did not mean to be silly when I suggested that Pete would benefit from a 1.6 crop body. My recommendation was in earnest, and based on a lot of personal experience using both a full frame body and a crop body for bird photography.

However, my experience is with the 5D classic, so I have not enjoyed the greater number of pixels that the 5D2/5D3 have. I do not believe that the 5D3 comes anywhere close to the pixel density of a 50D, 60D, or 7D. But Jake recommends the 5D3 over any of these bodies, and he really knows his stuff, so I defer to him.

I just wanted to defend what I wrote earlier. Any time someone calls my comments "silliness", I feel a need to respond and defend what I had said, and point out that the recommendation was based on a of of experience, not just conjecture.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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CyberDyneSystems
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Apr 25, 2013 15:48 |  #27

Sorry Tom, and thanks for your clarification.

Honestly, I was not replying to you, but clearly my statement would be taken the same way by anyone that had made the same recommendation.

My feeling regarding the suggestion being silly, was based on a few factors, 1st the OPs question being asked.
"Lens for Full frame and shooting birds"
Posted in the EF lens forum.

I think we all (myself included) can get off base when we reply to that sort of question by completely flipping the paradigm, and suggesting that rather than find what was being looked for, suggest a totally different approach. There is merit in this sort of reply. I don't deny that, but at times, it feels a little heavy handed. A little too gear centric as well. EG: The same day I replied to this thread, I had just replied to a thread where someone was trying to find a lighter weight set up do to medical condition / pain, and was being told as a solution to buy a grip and that weight to the load.. ???
I believe that it may be that this is where my "silliness" comment truly came from.

Pixel density is a big advantage for birding. No question. Especially when cost of lenses is what it is. I would not deny it's importance. I do however contend that it is not the only thing one need to look at, and that it is not a magic bullet. (I don't imply that you said it was)

Part of the different view point may be due to differing experiences.

Some numbers to consider:
The 5D3 will put 14MP on the same "1.3x crop" as my 1D MkIII did with only 10MP and my 1DII did with only 8.5MP.
That to me, and to many 1D shooters, which were the majority of birders for some years, is a huge step up in pixel density.

The 7D puts 18MP on the same crop as the 5D3 puts only 9MP.
Tom is absolutely correct, thsi is DOUBLE the pixels on target at the same field of view.

So half the pixels compared to the 7D,.. but still more cropped to 1.6 than my long soldiering 1D MkII had for it's full field of view.

So yes, the 5D3 needs a longer lens to do a similar job re pixels on target compared with the 7D,.

But, I also know that 9MP is enough to print good solid 17" x 24" prints and sell them in an art gallery. I've done it with less (cropped 8.5MP images)

Anyway, I am sorry my choice of words ruffled feathers.


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Tom ­ Reichner
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Apr 25, 2013 15:54 |  #28

CyberDyneSystems wrote in post #15866986 (external link)
Sorry Tom, and thanks for your clarification.

Honestly, I was not replying to you, but clearly my statement would be taken the same way by anyone that had made the same recommendation.

My feeling regarding the suggestion being silly, was based on a few factors, 1st the OPs question being asked.
"Lens for Full frame and shooting birds"
Posted in the EF lens forum.

I think we all (myself included) can get off base when we reply to that sort of question by completely flipping the paradigm, and suggesting that rather than find what was being looked for, suggest a totally different approach. There is merit in this sort of reply. I don't deny that, but at times, it feels a little heavy handed. A little too gear centric as well. EG: The same day I replied to this thread, I had just replied to a thread where someone was trying to find a lighter weight set up do to medical condition / pain, and was being told as a solution to buy a grip and that weight to the load.. ???
I believe that it may be that this is where my "silliness" comment truly came from.

Jake,
see the bold above:
I completely understand what you are saying here, and I agree with you. However, in this thread, the OP asked the following in the very first post:

Stillwater Gold wrote in post #15862379 (external link)
I thought about picking up a 7D instead of the lens and I'd only be spending another $50.00 for the body verses the lens. Thoughts?

In light of that, it did not seem that any recommendations concerning a 1.6 crop body were "flipping the paradigm". The OP actually asked for our thoughts on the issue, and we gave them.

Anyway, it's all good. Sorry that my feathers ruffle so easily.

Also, I would like to thank you for doing the math, and giving us the pixel density figures. That is extremely helpful, especially in situations when one cannot get close enough to frame the subject as desired, and must crop to achieve the desired result. In fact, the only reason I haven't bought a 1D3 is because of its sub-par pixel density. If only the 1D4 were so affordable!


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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Pepe ­ Guitarra
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Apr 25, 2013 17:54 |  #29

kbar7285 wrote in post #15863381 (external link)
Based on the picutures in your thread, I can tell you that you definitely need to be closer.
I wouldn't take that shot with my 600 MK II and 1.4 ext. (840 mm)

Even with my super-tele, shots like that will lack detail and sharpness. I will, however, recommend the 400 5.6 with a 7 d. It's a very sharp combination. I had both 'till I made the move to the "big lenses"

Al

Ditto


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Apr 26, 2013 00:20 as a reply to  @ Pepe Guitarra's post |  #30

There are two ways to answer your question.
Literally, or with thought for overall cost, practicality etc
One example you posted was at 420mm, 1/250 sec.
So that would, for me, mean around 1/10 or less chance of getting a real sharp shot on a flying bird, just due to camera shake and panning error at that shutter speed.
Assuming that is just an example, and you're hoping to achieve higher shutter speeds normally, it will still take a perfectly focused (with steady camera) shot even with the very best lens to allow large cropping and a good final result.
So, yes, you really want an 800, maybe with TC (and huge tripod, gimble head etc)

I think if you do find you are doing a lot of photography where you really want every last bit of reach, 400 5.6 on the 5D3 is best option, and if you become even more obsessed, 7D pixel density / sensor size would be worthwhile (with 400 5.6)
But that's if you decide to specialize in super long, and you'll be beg/borrow/stealing a super tele in that case.

oops - A74A4157 was the pic I was looking at - 217mm. So panning on a bird I'd probably be at 1 out of 3 keeper at 1/250.


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