Birding with a 500mm F4 or 600mm F4

Started Feb 1, 2014 | Discussions thread
Brandon birder Veteran Member • Posts: 4,179
Re: The key goals / factors here for Andy…

dwa1 wrote:

The key goals / factors here for Andy (in his desire to get more reach) are the need for fast shutter speeds (for wildlife), high ISO / low noise performance in very low light conditions. It’s not just an “occasional” very low light situation that he wants to address. The low light situations are the “norm” and not the exception.

For those of us that live in areas where we get frequent photo ops in beautiful sunny weather (for me that is during the spring, summer and fall in the n.e. USA), it's sometimes difficult for us to "see the light" from Andy’s perspective. After experiencing so many cloudy, rainy, dreary days here lately and reading this ongoing thread, I can better understand his direction / decisions regarding FX, DX and V2 / FT-1.

Based on everything that he presented to us, I agree with his direction. In his typical low light situations, in addition to good glass, he needs the best high ISO / low noise performance body to keep the shutter speeds up, all the while maintaining excellent IQ. I agree with his assessment and his decision to buy the D800E over the D7100. At the current time FX still rules the high ISO world over DX. Although the D7100 is very good, it cannot touch the latest FX bodies (with regard to high ISO / low noise performance). Hence the need for faster, bigger, longer FL glass and the D800E rather than using DX or CX with shorter focal length lenses.

Given all of the key factors and goals, this makes perfect sense (especially since he has the financial opportunity to purchase the gear).

Good luck with the “500mm vs. 600mm” decision Andy.


btw / fwiw… I shoot wildlife (mostly in bright light). I just bought a D7100 to pair with my D300 in my 2-body shooting rigs.

I agree. Like Andy I live in the UK but use a D800 and 500mm f4vr +/- TC's in the winter and the D7100 and 80-400afsvr from mid Spring into Mid Autumn.  Must say looking forward to travelling light soon.

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