Christmas came early for at least one photographer.......
December 08, 2016 • Leave a Comment
When we are children, our hoilday wish list is often simple and sometimes inexpensive, such as the little boy who wanted only his "two front teeth" for Christmas.
For photographers, it can be more complicated--and expensive. I will get into my personal wish list in my next post, but for now let me note that the photographer in me already got a big present--a Nikon 200 to 500mm zoom lens.
As you know, I take lots of sailing and action shots. I have been using my Nikon 70 to 200mm zoom, with a Nikon 1.4 teleconverter. The results have been good, but I was just not getting the reach I wanted. My best shots were taken on the water, with the closer to the subject the better. Getting close is, however, not always possible without interfearing with a race--which is not a good idea as it gets you yelled at by skippers and possibly banned by race officials!
I knew I needed more reach a while ago and this spring, when I booked a place on a boat watching the America's Cup races in New York harbor, I decided to rent the 200-500mm lens. The day had horrid weather, but the lens was great. I was not overwhelmed by its weight, but I was impressed by its phenomenal clarity and image quality (iq).
By this past autumn I decided it was time to get the lens. I looked at other manufacturers and models, but I still liked my original choice best. After watching a lot of fall sailing and getting mediocre results because of lack of reach, I decided to take the plunge. In this I was aided by Nikon's refurbishment program, where one can get a practically new lens at a significant discount. Then Black Friday sales were announced with a 10% savings offered and a lens was available. I made the purchase.
Although I used the lens only a few times, I am very pleased with results. It is tack sharp, fast, with superfast autofocus--perfect for catching that speeding sailboat and the occasional bird. The aperture is fixed at 5.6, but that doesn't seem to matter. It is also comparable with my teleconverter, but I have yet to use that combination for more than a few shots. The results, shown above, of the Turkey Bowl Regatta held at Toms River Yacht Club a few weeks ago, speak for themselves.
With this lens, I should have all the glass I need for a while---at least until a periodic episode of GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) kicks in. Well, there is always next year's holidays....!
Keywords: 200-500mm zoom, Black Friday, Christmas, New York harbor, Nikkor, Nikon, Toms River Yacht Club, Turkey Bowl Regatta, gear, holidays, photographer, refurbished, sailing and action shots, teleconverter, telephoto, zoom
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