Sony 70-300G or 70-400mm

Started Jan 12, 2010 | Discussions thread
Robsphoto Senior Member • Posts: 1,219
Re: Sony 70-300G or 70-400G for hand held pics?

FEM2008 wrote:
Hi Rob,

Please note Walt's reply to your post. I agree with Walt's explanation.

I don't have big hands or arms so my "body tripod" is not that steady, but by using good holding techniques, I get pretty good support and get rid of big camera movements. However, I still get these little movements that cause the camera to shake or twitch slightly. That is where the extra wight helps. With the added inertia, it makes it harder to move the camera. The weight really helps dampen vibrations caused by shutter and mirror slap as well. The shutter even sounds more muffled with the 70-400G (likewise with the 70-200G).

With that said, I tried to do BIF shooting a couple of times with it and I did get tired pretty quickly. I probably need to start lifting weights again! A mono-pod also works great for good light photography.

I mentioned this before on this forum, so please excuse my repeating this. I noticed that SSS works very well with the 70-400G, but at lower shutter speeds (mainly

Robsphoto wrote:

FEM2008 wrote:

It is heavier to carry around, as soon you'll find out. The 70-300G is a much nicer (weight wise) as a walk-around lens. >

By the way, I do recommend a wide and sturdy neck-strap with this lens. Don't skimp here.

One advantage I found to the weight is that I get much steadier and sharper pictures hand held than with the 70-300G.

That's interesting, I own the 70-300G, and although I can hand-hold it reasonably well at 300mm, I really need to use a tripod for best results above 200mm. The 70-300G costs $1700 in New Zealand and weighs 760G. The 70-400G costs $2800 and is nearly double the weight at 1.5kg.

So, do you mind explaining, please, why you can get steadier hand-held pictures with the 70-400G when it's twice as heavy as the 70-300G?

Incidentally, I like the look of the 300mm f/2.8 Sony SAL 300F28G, but it weighs 2.31kg and costs $15,000! Has anyone tried this one out?

Examples of the outstanding resolution of cropped images from the Sony A900

Thanks very much Walt and FEM2008 for your "inertia" explanation. I see that a similar explanation is also given here:

In my case, I chose the much lighter 70-300G lens (760 grams), because I imagined that I couldn't properly hand-hold the 70-400G lens (1500 grams) at 400mm. However, if you decide to carry a tripod with you when you go hiking etc., you may be happy to carry the lighter 300G lens!

I find it difficult to get a steady image when holding 8x binoculars, perhaps they are not heavy enough? But, I will investigate ways of making my 70-300G lens a lot heavier, perhaps some strategically placed lead weights would do the trick? But seriously, though, it seems the 1.5kg weight of the 70-400G hasn't been a major issue with owners, as evidenced by many of the positive comments here:

Examples of the outstanding resolution of cropped images from the Sony A900

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