Safari: MFT good enough?

Started Nov 9, 2012 | Discussions thread
safaridon
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Re: Safari: MFT good enough?
In reply to Ann Chaikin, Nov 13, 2012

Ann Chaikin wrote:

Thanks for the tip. We have beanbags but will consider a monopod too. Our bags are empty. Will fill when we get to Africa with edible beans and then give them away at the end of the trip.

Just a few observations regarding the suggestion of relying on beanbags and monopods.  In a typical safari vehicle you will be standing upright thru a hatch with your elbows about roof height and hence very awkward to stoop low enough to see out your camera on a bean bag.  The monopod may be better for that but still takes time to set or move about.  I personally find bracing my elbows on the rooftop to form a steady platform to get a shot on a moments notice and one must be able to swivel around quickly to be able to take shots anywhere 360 degrees or you will miss opportunities because you are on the wrong side!   I know many animals like lions resting in the heat of the day etc are very stationary and everyone gets pictures of them but often the best pictures of animals are those showing some sudden action and one must be very alert and quick to not miss the opportunity.

I know many say it is the photographer which makes the picture but that does not refer as much to the camera settings etc but rather to the quick reflexes to compose and take the shot in the first place.  In most cases with the excellent auto programs let the camera do that after setting the appropriate maximum ISO levels and just concentrate on taking the pictures first and foremost or you will miss the potential shot of a lifetime. Some cameras with shutter half pressed start taking pictures continously onto the cameras builtin memory so that you can go back a second or two after you have taken a shot and retrieve others even before you snapped your picture.

Naturally if you have limited use of either tripods, monopods, or bean bags settling for a slightly lower focal length telephoto will give you sharper pictures even if not as high magnification.  Others have commented that with m4/3 300mm (600mm equivalent range) is about as far as you can go unless rock solid stationary for birding etc.

Just my two bits

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