Friday, October 19, 2007

Summer In October! and More Info. on DSLRs

The weather has been unusually warm throughout most of October with the last several days hitting the low 80s (Fahrenheit). It is even uncomfortable to the deer as this panting young buck demonstrates. At least it is raining today after about a month and a half without any significant precipitation.

Buck Panting-Canon 40-D 500mmF4

Doe and Fawn Nursing-Canon 40-D 500mmF4 with 1.4 Extender

I successfully captured another nursing scene, this time using the 500mmF4 with 1.4 extender attached which is equal to a 700mm lens. On a Canon Digital SLR such as the 10-D through the 40-D and the digital Rebels this actually results in an effective focal length of 1120mm. These cameras have a 1.6 crop factor.

When one goes higher up the scale into models such as the 5D and the higher end professional DSLRS you are back to the lenses performing as they did on a film camera.,with full frame sensors. For that reason many professional wildlife photographers actually prefer cameras in the first group as they give them more effective range. If one wants better coverage of wide shots however then it is best to have a full frame sensor such as the second group of cameras offers. Most manufacturers have found a way around this by making special wide-angle zoom lenses that offer increased angle of view for the cameras in the first class.

Which will win out? Who knows! At this point many think that at some time the full frame sensor will dominate, but they are going to have to come down in price substantially for this to happen, and then one will lose the "crop factor" of the 1.6 sensor.
I am really getting technical now, but one position maintains that a full frame sensor camera with a high mega-pixel rating can be cropped in imaging programs to give the same size as the 1.6 crop factor cameras straight from the sensor and still equal or better their image quality. I don't know as I do not own a full frame DSLR, or know anyone who does so that I can make a
personal judgment.

As a side note, the picture of the panting buck is severely cropped and it maintains its quality well. So it is hard to find a definitive answer on this subject. The major criteria for being able to crop a photo to this extent are 1. Good Lighting 2. Shoot with a premium quality lens 3. Shoot with a fixed power lens also known as a "prime", but the better quality zooms such as the 70-200mm L will also do very well. 3. Only crop images that are in perfect focus.


lv2scpbk said...

Nice shots and I liked reading about the cameras. I'm trying to decide on what kind of camera to purchase.

Kerri said...

Amazing shots!

Chad Oneil Myers said...

You're posting great stuff, Willard. Good and informative commentary along with great images as well. Keep it up!

By the way, I'm in the middle of watching your favorite movie..."Gettysburg". Seems to be very character and dialog driven supposed to "action". The one leader (can't think of his name right now) seems to have a little bit of "comedy relief" to him, that's made him my favorite character in the film. I'm sure that was on purpose by the film makers.

Old Wom Tigley said...

The pictures are stunning, the Panting Buck is my favourite.

I'm a bit lost on the issues of lences, but the cropping I can understand.
Though I don't fully understand all the info.. the fact is I still read it, and I then look into it on a Search Engine... slowly what you are saying is getting there where I'm concerned.. so thanks for doing it.

Anonymous said...

I have two digital rebels one is the xt and the newer is the xti. And I need to know what to use to pump up my 70-200 zoom lens. f4. with IS. I don't want to buy something that will not work but 200mm is just not really good enough for some shots.

I really like your shots today.

I think I have read your post three times and still can't imagine what I need so that's why I asked.

Willard said...

I'll give it some more thought and write a post on the subject either this evening or tomorrow, but the bottom line is there is really no one outstanding lens that will do it all and all of those L lenses, especially the big primes, are outrageously expensive. One of my favorites is the 500mmF4, but it is too powerful in many cases.
Actually one body with a 70-200mm lens and another mounted on a 500mm on a tripod is about an ideal setup for wandering the country side, but the price for all of that is scary.

Anonymous said...

I got the 70-200mm IS (White) lens at f4. I can't really afford the 500mm f4 but thought there was something like an extender or something I could screen on what I got an improve that one somewhat? I don't know.