shooting wildlife

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by a_spaceman, Nov 18, 2008.

  1. a_spaceman

    a_spaceman TPF Noob!

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    hi all!
    i've often wanted to try shooting some wildlife, hence wanted to buy a lens with a good focal lenght. i want one more than ever since yesterday i found myself alond with two beautiful deers and found how my 50mm lens was inadequate for the job.
    so the (simple) questions are: what focal lenghts would you raccomend? would a 2x tele converter do the job?
    i ask because a tele converter would be likely to be much cheaper than a lens and -if i am not wrong- would allow me to keep the fast f/1.7 of my 50mm lens. but then again, would a 100mm do the job?
    in a word, help!
    thanks in advance
     
  2. davebmck

    davebmck TPF Noob!

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    I would suggest at least 300mm for wildlife, 400 is better. As for the teleconverter, that will extend your focal length, but you will lose two stops of light with the 2x converter.
     
  3. chrisburke

    chrisburke TPF Noob!

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    i recall recently a thread about the exact same topic... i dont know what the answer is, cause i'm not into wild life... but if you do a search, you should find it..
     
  4. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    How much do you want to spend?
     
  5. a_spaceman

    a_spaceman TPF Noob!

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    thanks chris, i'll take a look!
    spending wise, i'd like to stay in the 20£ range. i know it's nothing but there are quite a few lenses going for that cheap for my minolta srt. at the moment i guess i'm not looking for the highest quality but more for the chance to work with one.
     
  6. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    £20?
    I think you must mean £200 at the very least ;)

    As for wildlife you could get a cheap 70-300mm (such as the sigma 70-300mm APO macro) which would fit into such a budget. That sort of lens would be a good starting point and would give you the 300mm range.
    However it won't give you good quality at 300mm, it will go softer - also when I used my lens (though not the APO edition which does deliver better results) I noted that quality does drop off quite quickly as the subject gets further away from the lens.

    Like I said its a good place to start from and will give you a good introduction to wildlife photography. From there the next upgrade would depend - I am not sure which format you are shooting on but most have access to a 300mm f4 lens which would give you far better long distance quality.

    As for teleconverters they magnify the image and also any errors in the lens itself - so they tend to only work well on really good glass (canon for example only make teleconverters which fit their L series of lenses). A 1.4 is a solid purchase, offering increased range, at a cost of (generally) very little quality and only one stop of light - 2* teleconverters offer greater range gains, but quality is noticably affected and you lose 2 stops of light - a trickier beast to use and I would say only to be used on very strong lenses.
     
  7. a_spaceman

    a_spaceman TPF Noob!

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    thanks for the suggestions!
    but what about the focus if i got a tele converter? i mean, on my 50mm the focus goes from 50cm to 10mt then to infinity. would these parameters be the same with a 2x converter or would they change?
     
  8. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    A teleconverter will adjust the minimum focus distance though I can't recall if it increases or decreases it - you will however retain infinity focus. The only way I know of for being able to remove your infinity focus is using an extension tube (or bellows) with a lens which would remove infinity focus and also reduce min-focusing distance (used with lenses for macro work since a reduced min focusing distance means the subject will be bigger in the frame - get it big enough (1:1) and you get macro).
     

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