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10-14-2011, 07:37 PM   #46
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Performabce with Teleconverter

Here is a shot I took today with a Kenko 1.5x P/AF Teleconverter attached to the Sigma 500 APO DG EX and K5. It is of one of the Grass Tree flowers in my front yard at a range of just over 15 metres. In taking these shots, I have retained the +5 focus adjustment that I had set for the lens alone.

I have attached the original shot which has been resized to 1000 pixels across and then sharpened in Photoshop, and a crop of the tip of the flower - the crop has been unprocessed except to convert it to JPEG.

What I found when playing with the TC fitted is that autofocus is considerably slower, but it does autofocus. I suspect it couldn't handle a moving object unless the light was amazing. It is also likely to just miss focus, but careful technique can avoid this.

K5, TAv mode, 1/640th, f5.6, ISO 1250

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10-14-2011, 09:06 PM   #47
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And another shot with the Kenko 1.5x TC, this time of two Scaly Breasted Lorikeets on the same flower at a range of about 15 metres. A fairly dull day here as some storms build up, so challenging conditions which is just perfect for seeing what it will do when things are less than perfect.

K5, TAv mode, 1/500th, f5.6, ISO3200; crop, resize and sharpen in Photoshop (no noise reduction)
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10-14-2011, 09:28 PM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by AdrianM Quote
A fairly dull day here as some storms build up
I'm just over the border, and I'm hearing more of those storms right now, coming in from the west. Time to turn the computer off and unplug!

The Sigma and the 1.5 Kenko TC seem to work well together. I have the Kenko 1.4 Teleplus DG TC, which supports AF OK, but it doesn't seem the optical equal of the Kenko 1.5.
10-15-2011, 06:27 AM   #49
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I'm encouraged by your use of an 3rd party TC. With a lens this expensive I gave more weight to Sigma's admonition not to use anything but a Sigma TC. Can I give my Tamron 1.4x a try with confidence I'm not going to damage the lens?


Also, I was surprised by how short the hood is: the hood for my Tamron 300/2.8 is longer and that's a FF lens. Presumably, Sigma knows what it's doing but I may do some lengthening experiments.

10-15-2011, 12:47 PM   #50
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Does the sigma 1.4x tc work with the new 500? I was under the impression it is hsm and the tc has no connectors for hsm.
10-15-2011, 01:24 PM   #51
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The Sigma 500 is still screw focus. The nikon/canon are HSN. They did not upgrade to a HSN when they upgraded the lens. I am finding I prefer the sound of the screw to reassure me the focus is working and then locked in. Speed of focusing is much better than the sigma 50_500. A great improvement on the new sigma 500 is a very robust metal lens hood that has a thumb screw to secure it from being dislodged.
10-15-2011, 02:58 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bob from Aus Quote
A great improvement on the new sigma 500 is a very robust metal lens hood that has a thumb screw to secure it from being dislodged.
Yeah, I like that! I'm also glad it's not HSM.
10-15-2011, 08:15 PM   #53
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I had it...

Personally (for me), I couldn't believe how light it was - a 7lb, 500mm lens is wonderful. Compare that to the 5.5lb 300/2.8. I miss that lens a bit sometimes, but it's all good.

I mentioned elsewhere that I think it's a great lens, and it needs to be stopped down for better sharpness. At F5.6 it's pretty sharp, and very sharp at F6.3 and higher.

One sample at F5.6:


EXIF

Yes, the Nilgai was wondering what was in the blind/hide before I saw him. My sixth sense made my head swivel to the other opening in the blind and I got the shot...

Adrian: regarding your shots you've posted - are they all handheld?

Cheers,
Marc

10-15-2011, 09:11 PM   #54
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I had some nice weather early this morning and then it rained. I still have not put the 500mm on a tripod or monopod but I have a had a couple of place to rest an arm. The k5 has gone off to get the verdict, dead or repairable after its encounter with sprite. Either way insurance has promised to cover it. (AAMI). Using my K20 - shake reduction not as good and much less dynamic range. Took this from my car when it was raining qt 200ISO, 250sec and F4.5. This was the sharpest which is quite sharp and can be used all the way. Not cropped. This masked lapwing as you can see is nesting next to a path. Typical
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10-15-2011, 09:18 PM   #55
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Also a great egret taken with the K20 at 250sec @ F8 and hand held. JPG, 70% crop and a few tweaks in lightroom.
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10-15-2011, 11:58 PM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Langille Quote
... Adrian: regarding your shots you've posted - are they all handheld?

Cheers,
Marc
Marc, the Kingfisher was on a monopod, the rest were hand held.

cheers
10-17-2011, 05:21 AM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by dadipentak Quote
I'm encouraged by your use of an 3rd party TC. With a lens this expensive I gave more weight to Sigma's admonition not to use anything but a Sigma TC. Can I give my Tamron 1.4x a try with confidence I'm not going to damage the lens?


Also, I was surprised by how short the hood is: the hood for my Tamron 300/2.8 is longer and that's a FF lens. Presumably, Sigma knows what it's doing but I may do some lengthening experiments.
I have a Tamron 1.4x and as far as I can tell, it is identical to the Kenko 1.5x that I have been using. So, up to you, but I would risk it. I stopped using Sigma TCs when I had 2 of them break - they don't seem as strong in the mount as the Kenkos.
10-17-2011, 06:27 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by AdrianM Quote
I have a Tamron 1.4x and as far as I can tell, it is identical to the Kenko 1.5x that I have been using. So, up to you, but I would risk it. I stopped using Sigma TCs when I had 2 of them break - they don't seem as strong in the mount as the Kenkos.
Thanks for the response! I'd normally just chalk Sigma's caution up to marketing b.s. but with $5K at stake figured some caution was in order. Just to play it safe, I'll probably stick to MF with TCs. Speaking of which I should say that this is my first experience with an AF lens longer than 300mm and my reaction is mixed: it's kind of cool in certain situations but a limiter really would be helpful.
10-17-2011, 02:21 PM   #59
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dadipenatx, Interesting about your response with auto focus. I can't think when I would use manual focus unless it won't autofocus. With birds I find I have a bout 3 seconds to get it all right and if I can't get a shot in, there is a good chance I won't get anything. I found for myself that autofocus is better than I am. Do any of you guys know if they have changed the handle on the lens. I read somewhere that if it is on a gimble, because the handle is so far from the lens, the lens is unstable on the tripod. I think I read the older lens had a plastic hood.I very much like the metal hood.
10-17-2011, 03:34 PM   #60
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Well, Bob, I guess I just got used to MF since that's all I could afford in the serious telephoto range. I'm sure I'll learn to love AF but I'm glad I'm not addicted to it (yet.) I have the Manfrotto gimball head but haven't.mounted this lens on it: I can't see how there'd be a problem but I'll check it out tomorrow.
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