180-400 is $12,399

Started 6 months ago | Discussions thread
BirdieMaker Regular Member • Posts: 470
Re: 180-400 is $12,399

Leonard Shepherd wrote:

BirdieMaker wrote:

If you are fortunate enough to have £/$ 25,000 left, $13,000 for a camera lens remains a big chunk of the disposable income.

If you shoot professionally, this is a business expense and a write off.

I agree - but presuming a pro make 12.5% net of travel costs (to get to events) and library commission they have to earn an extra $100,000 to pay for it.

Some pros will prefer a 400 f2.8 for its probable much faster AF speed and f2.8 option when 400mm is the right focal length and a converter when a narrower angle of view is preferred.

Sports pro shooters tend to have a 400 f2.8 anyway and may not be prepared to pay the significant entry price for having an internal converter on a likely slower focus zoom.

The 180-400 makes some sense when compared to the cost of both a 400 f2.8 and 600 f4 prime, assuming the AF speed is significantly faster than the 200-400 or fast AF speed is not important.

I shoot professionally for a wire so I'm speaking from direct experience. I shoot along people from other agencies, media outlets, leagues, teams, etc... For an amateur, this is an expensive toy. From a professional perspective, it's an expensive tool. A D5 or 1Dx2 is the same as is a 400 or 600 prime. You just need them and make them pay for themselves; some do it faster than others. Unfortunately, there is a price barrier to be competitive in sports photography today. If you can't do it, someone else will.

I don't think this is primarily a replacement for a 400/2.8, but a replacement for the current 200-400 or a new tool for some. Both of thew Nikon 200-400/4 versions have issues with focus at longer distances. With only the MTF graph to go off of, this lens is incredible and it's probably safe to say doesn't have any of the distance issues. It's a different tool for different jobs. I think you'll see a lot of these used at the Olympics next month too.

I see a lot of 200-400s at NFL day games. I've seen a few at night MLB games too. It's a tradeoff of a stop of light for having the 200 to 400 range, which covers a gap desirable on how one shoots, and leaves other options for a second or third body. Competition is tight, and any advantage to getting a shot is highly desirable.

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