Which telephoto lens for taking birds?

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
John Sheehy Forum Pro • Posts: 24,337
Re: Which telephoto lens for taking birds?

Mark B. wrote:

adonetok wrote:

I have a Canon 90D camera and want to take photos for birds.

Which telephoto lens is good to buy?

Canon or Sigma?

Do I need a big number like 500mm above?

On an APS-C body, bare min would be 400mm. Canon 100-400 f/4-5.6 L II has gotten extremely good reviews. You can save some money & weight with the Sigma & Tamron alternatives, but 1) they are a tad slower (smaller max aperture)

The 150-600 zooms have a larger aperture at 600mm/6.3 = ~93mm. The 400/6.3 ones, of course, have a slightly smaller aperture than 400/5.6.

The numbers "5.6", "6.3", "8", etc, are not apertures. There has to be a focal length to divide by those numbers, and the result is the aperture. Those numbers alone are relevant to AF ability and exposure, especially phase-detect AF, but exposure is not directly related to subject capture quality, which actually depends on the actual aperture or entrance pupil. An 800mm f/5.6 lens would give a lot less subject noise than a 300mm f/4 lens, from the same distance and with the same shutter speed (and less diffraction, and more background blur).

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