Nikon 500mm F4 VR, tripods and pics

Started Feb 18, 2014 | Discussions thread
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Dr Bob
Dr Bob Senior Member • Posts: 1,319
Nikon 500mm F4 VR, tripods and pics


Thanks to all the advice from here, I ordered my 500mm F4 and finally got out shooting today after a few days of adjusting the AF fine tune on the bare lens and the 1.4TC.

Question: everyone has said you need a Gitzo series 5 tripod to get the best sharp shots. I currently have a Manfroto 055 pro which is only rated at 8Kgs. I thought it would be far from useful but thought I would give it a go before I splashed out another £1000. From the testing I did on the bare lens, I found I could get good sharp shots at 1/1600 down to 1/500 with VR off, and then down to 1/100 with VR on. Bearing in mind, this is the first time I have shot with this type of lens (and hence I can only get better) I wont invest in a new tripod just yet. At what shutter speed will the series 5 tripods start to show benefit?

A few shots from the first day out. Mostly very common birds round this way apart from the last one. All done with the 1.4TC and lens wide open.

Blackheaded Gull - cropped around 40%

Great Crested Grebes - just starting to do their courtship display - another couple of weeks before the full routine.

Great Tit - almost a 100% crop

Mute swan

Long Tailed Duck - very rare in these parts

He's just eaten the bird!

 Dr Bob's gear list:Dr Bob's gear list
Nikon D800E Nikon D600 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 500mm f/4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 28mm f/1.8G +1 more
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