Longer Tele capability and FX V DX

Started May 24, 2013 | Discussions thread
PatMann
Contributing MemberPosts: 777
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Re: Longer Tele capability and FX V DX
In reply to Graham Sp, May 24, 2013

Extenders and zooms both make compromises, often significant compromises, in some aspect of image quality (resolution, distortion, vignetting, chromatic aberration, contrast) compared to quality prime lenses in the long telephoto range. DX is more demanding of lens resolution because of its higher pixel density, but with lenses designed for full frame use, DX is using only the highest quality center of the image circle, throwing away the most-distorted and softest parts of the image.

If you are seriously interested in highest image quality and tired of the marginal quality you are getting from these compromises you are currently making, I would first eliminate the extender + zoom combination from consideration completely. I would second eliminate 2x extenders except for the TC20eIII (with the lenses it works well with - which seems by some reports to include the latest 70-200 f/2.8 but no other zooms). If you are shooting in good light, and not shooting action that requires the highest shutter speeds and gets into higher ISOs as a result, DX should not be a major compromise compared to FX, and your budget will be less strained in the telephoto range. As soon as you move above 300mm, your costs for quality glass go up exponentially. If you move to FX and want the same angle you get with 300mm on DX, you are committing to at least a 400mm lens, at 2-3 times the cost of a 300mm lens of the same aperture.

I suggest that you work on your shooting discipline, support, and settings that maximize what you get from your current cameras, and saving money for the best prime lenses. Who knows, by the time you've saved up the $2500-3500 required, Nikon may have  brought a nice 400mm f/5.6 AF-S with exceptional image quality to market for your D600. They might even have produced a new formula 1.4x extender that makes a minimal compromise in image quality with optics matched to that lens.

For shorter focal lengths, I suggest the 70-200 f/4, rather than trying to make one lens do it all. It won't.

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Pat

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