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Old Nov 20, 2005, 9:40 AM   #1
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Hello.One of my big intress is bird watching. Now i want to take some pictures when i´m out and watching. What should be my best lens choice for my purposes? I cant spend tousends of ¢ for the lens. I use a Nikon D70s.I m sorry for my poor english. [img]/forums/images/emoticons/laughing-smiley-002.gif[/img]
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Old Nov 21, 2005, 8:29 AM   #2
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IMO the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 EX is super fast for this kind of actions - It just bang into focus:
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Old Nov 22, 2005, 7:11 PM   #3
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Get the Nikkor 80-400VR. Light enough for han holding. This picture was taken from my car hand holding the camera (D50). The 80-400VR will log on the focus when you pointed to flying birds. Taking flying birds pictures with this llens was very easy.

I take pictures of birds with this lens nearly every day and like it. I never use tripod for this lens. Also leave my binocular at home and use this D5o + 80-400VR to watch birds.:idea:
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Old Nov 23, 2005, 10:10 AM   #4
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I agree with NHL...the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 EX is one hell of a lens and they're the only ones that make one. But the 80-400 VRNikkor is a great option as well. If you wanted that one, then I'd get the Sigma EX version and save a little cash. They are essentially the same lens both 80-400 f/4.5-5.6 with VR or OS (optical stabilization). The Sigma runs around $970 and the Nikkor runs around $1430, but has a $200 mail in rebate offer currently available.

Going with the 80-400 options will be lighter and have a larger zoom range, but at the cost of a bit of speed. With the 120-300, you can use it as a 120-300 f/2.8 (180-450), a 168-420 f/4 with a 1.4xTC (252-630), and a 240-600 f/5.6 with a 2x TC (360-900) which is pretty impressive. Also, the VR won't help you stop action. If a bird is sitting on a branch or something, then that's fine, it will help you get a steady shot, but if that bird takes off and flies away, the VR is no help in getting the shot there.

400mm is also not quite large enough for superb birding. I'm not saying it won't work, but being to get closer with out getting closer is a definite plus. Depth of field will be more flattering with a longer, faster lens as well. You will have great bokeh and a faster lens will be more useful when wildlife are more active which is at dusk and dawn.

It might sound like I'm not for the 80-400 at all, but that's not true, it's a wonderful lens and has it's niche, but for birding and especially if you can afford it, the 120-300 is a better choice in my opinion.

Good luck with your choice...either way you'll be able to get great shots. :-)
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