Telephoto lens for use in Kenya

Started Apr 12, 2013 | Discussions thread
OP mfouks Regular Member • Posts: 408
Re: Telephoto lens for use in Kenya

Thanks Richard.  I can't believe how much equipment you took:). I think that the 7100 with the 80-400 would be a good choice.  Still thinking about a 300 f2.8 with teleconverter as the latter works really well for birds.  If funds were unlimited getting both would be even better and perhaps leaving the 70-200 at home.  I got the 70-200 2.8 just before the 4.0 version came out, otherwise I would have gone for the newer, lighter version.  I know that weight might not be a huge issue as I will be in the van most of the time but there is still travelling with all of the weight on planes etc.


Richard300 wrote:

Hi Marsha

I was in Kenya (and Tanzania) a few years ago.  I would say that the combination that will get the most use will be the D800 paired up with the 70-200 without tc.  For the longer stuff, I used a 300 f4 with a 1.4 tc (I was shooting Canon at the time so had IS).  I am in a similar situation with an upcoming trip to India and I will probably go with the new 80-400 instead of one of the 300s.  If the 300 f4 had VR, it would be my first choice but we have to work with the offerings we have : )  The one thing I will say is that the biggest challenge you will face for subjects at further distances are haze and sand.  These two factors can really do a number on the results.  You need to experience it to believe it, as you will.  Personally, I believe that two bodies are a must for Africa. Heck, I sometimes travel with 3 as the enclosed picture demonstrates.  The picture was taken last summer in Madagascar.  D800, D700, D300s paired with 24-70, 14-24 and 70-200.  My version of bling : )  One thing is for sure.  You are in for an amazing experience.  Make sure to bring along a little bit of patience and a sense of humor and you will have a great time with more photo opportunities than one can imagine.

To recap, my suggestion for a second body would be a d7100 and I would pair it with (in order of personal preference) 80-400, 300 f4, 300 2.8).  I will say that the weight is not that much of an issue as most of the time we were taking pictures from a vehicle and could rest the equipment that was not in use on a seat.


mfouks wrote:

I am going on a photo safari in Africa (Kenya)  in September and I was thinking that I would get an additional backup camera.  I am currently using a D800.  My telephoto lens at the moment is a 70-200 f2.8 with a 2X extender.  I am going to get a backup camera (probably the D600 or 7200) which I have enquired about on the D800 forum.

I am looking for help in deciding  what telephoto lens to either invest in or rent.  I am looking for something not too heavy (will be using beanbags not a  tripod) as I am very concerned about holding and travelling with a heavy lens although I guess the beanbags will help.  So I am considering the 300 f2.8 lens or the new 80-400 lens that has just come out.  I have rented the 300 f2.8 for another trip and found it to be about as heavy as I can handle.  I also used the 1.4 and the 2X teleconverter with it.  Am I correct that the image quality will be much better using the 300 2.8 lens with teleconverters  as opposed to the new 80-400 lens?  I was thinking that one camera would be used with the 70-200 and the other would be used with the longer lens.

Any comments/ideas would be very much appreciated.



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