700mm vs. 500mm handheld or to crop or not to crop

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Greyser
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700mm vs. 500mm handheld or to crop or not to crop
4 months ago

I use TC with my K-3+Sigma 500/4.5 combo very rarely. Maybe because I was not really impressed when I tried it on K-5 before.

Two shots below are not a real comparison, but kind of a summary of my yesterday experience. In both situations I kept SR on hoping that according to MightyMike recent findings 500mm SR would work fine with real 700mm set up. However, the number of keepers from 700mm obviously was lower. Both images were shot at approximately the same conditions. I did PP on both images similarly and crop them to my taste. To my surprise the final crops kept approximately the same 1.4x factor size wise difference as is dictated by TC. The crop from 500mm to me looks a bit sharper and details more pronounced (having also other samples in mind). However, the best output from 700mm is very decent. If you are not looking for the largest print ever or not dealing with very distant target, the unique cropping from 24MP sensor would be more easy choice in terms of combo hand holding. Both shots were taken at f/7.1. AF worked fine with TC. Regardless the fact that I uploaded slightly larger images, they both lost some crispness during downsizing. Anyway, please click on them to see larger more detailed pics.

K-3+Sigma 500/4.5+Sigma 1.4x EX DG TC. I believe that my other two 1.4x TCs: Tamron Pz-AF and older Sigma EX non-DG would behave similarly.

K-3+Sigma 500/4.5 cropped approx. 1.4x more aggressively than the image #1

What do you think?

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