I did some reading up on using the DX mode vs a Tc 1.4 and other than the fact you basically reduce the pixel count to half ( or however you call this) with DX what benefits are there? I am very guilty of over cropping my images as I always find even with the 200-500 its never close enough. Doing that of course reduces sharpness. Your images are sharp to my eyes even if they are cropped, but I have to admit I would probably crop even more to get " closer". Would your advice be the same if I added the 1.4 TC?? Maybe one of these days Nikon will come up with f4 800mm which would be less than $3000. ( hey I can always dream) Can I ask you a favor and crop one of your shots to only show the bird and not the rest of the shot. Maybe that will cure my "illness"
By the way I think the BIF is great( at least to my eyes) Why are we photographers so hard on ourselves about the quality of our own images???
As usual it always nice to read your comments and posts.
I started off with an explanation for DX vs FX and when I started going cross eyed, I thought better to just give you a link. Go here, this is a well written article...
I am an FX guy. I used to have a DX camera, it was very nice, but I much prefer the full frame camera and the higher MP count. Both take excellent images and I do not believe one is better than the other, for me it is preference.
Now, regarding the images, I a certain standard I go by when I post images anywhere......
• I never post an image I consider to be a bad image. I only post the best.
Well, I consider photographer a creative art form. An artist will never show you a failed painting, he will whitewash the canvas and paint over it and do it again until it is right. Photography, in my mind, is absolutely the same. Why on earth would you post an out of focus image? Or an image where you take a portrait and part of the persons head is cut off?
Typically, I wouldn't post most of those images, including the Egret. But, because I am trying to show everyone what the 300mm Fresnel can do and because I only had it a very short period of time, this is the best I could muster for this brief review. The Egret image is blown out. The bird only passed once and I fired off a burst and that was the best of the lot. It was harsh sun and I had the camera on M, so I got what I got. The other images were all soft focus on the eye, so in my books, instantly garbage.
In bird photography, capture a crisp, in focus eye of the creature is everything. Then, proper lighting, pose, background, direction of light etc. all make up the evaluation process of whether or not the image is a keeper or a discard.
So, in regards to the Egret, the eye is basically borderline, leaning on soft. The tail and right upper wing are blown out... typically, this is deleted.
Further to this review, this lens is awesome, no doubt, but you need to use it in the proper light. In my opinion, it loses its crisp sharpness with subjects that are more distant. I was pushing this to the limit with these images. They are good, but pretty much at the end of the lenses reach, if you ask me. That crisp, fine detail, feather structure etc. is all missing.
There is no comparison to the detail I can get from an image from the 200-400 much less from my old Nikon 400mm!
Teleconverters only add to the weakness of the lens. They help you extend the range, but there is a price to pay in terms of IQ degradation, typically in terms of sharpness. It all comes down to how fussy you are and if you count pixels. I am very fussy.... Champagne taste on a bread and water salary.
Regarding the inexpensive, 800mm? Not in our lifetimes.
Regarding your request for a crop, pick and image and tell me how you want it cropped. Will try to comply so you can see what happens.
I am not a huge fan of cropping. I have a few standard sizes I like to go with and hope I can drop the image down to 40% to increase the sharpness of the image. The more you crop in, when the subject is small, the more the image degrades when you are done. I try very hard to avoid 100% crops or greater.
Thanks for the kind words!