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  1. #1
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    Nov. 5, 2000
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    Default Camera Lenses

    I am shopping for an additional zoom lens for my Nikon D5000. I am getting decent "at the farm" shots with a 55-200 lens but am wanting to go up. I have found a 70-300mm for around $150 and an 80-400mm for over 10x that price.

    The price on the 70-300mm sounds like it must be made pretty cheaply, but is the 80-400mm REALLY worth THAT much more?

    While I enjoy taking horse photos and seem to have a decent eye, I am an amateur and intend to remain such. I therefore have no desire to spent umpteen thousand $$$ on equipment.



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar. 21, 2011
    Location
    Austin, TX
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    Default

    I am a sometimes-pro photographer and have a 100-300mm lens and it is PERFECTLY adequate for almost every distance-shooting situation (jumpers) and too much for some (dressage tests). There would be no reason to spend that sort of money on the 80-400 IMO.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 29, 2004
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    Colorado
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    Default

    I think I just got a 55-300 Nikkor for my D80... maybe check that out?

    What kind of shots are you looking at to want to move up to a longer focal length??

    Will shutter speed play any factor in your decision on focal length?

    Recently, I found that the 300 wasn't long enough for what might have been consider a much more shorter focal length lens in wanting to take "close-up" of plants that were 20-30' away...

    Depends on what your needs are.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 23, 1999
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    Cypress, near Houston, Texas
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    Default

    The price of the lens is determined by many things, including the quality of the glass, how low/wide an appature setting it has and whether it has built in image stabilization, speed of its ability to autofocus, etc.

    If you will be shooting only in sunlight (which gives you the best photos by far and will allow you to shoot at high shutter speeds to stop action), then you don't need a low appature lens. A 4.0 or 5.6 will likely be fine. This alone will drastically reduce the price of the lens.

    The longer the lens the less stable it is without a tripod and the more likely you are to need stabilization to prevent blurring from shakey hands. Your camera will have some stabilization built in (so make sure it is turned on) and shooting at the highest possible shutter speed with reduce this problem as well.

    Finally, you can buy lenses to fit a Nikon that are made by someone other than Nikon. Tamron is a good one. This will save you lots of money as well.

    I find that a zoom that will go from anywhere between 70 to 100 and up to 300 will give you all the power you need for good shots. Find one by Tamron that has an appature of 3.6 to 4.0 as its lowest - going down to 2.8 becomes VERY EXPENSIVE and is only really needed it you are doing still shots in low light. A less like this can be had quite inexpensively.
    Visit Sonesta Farms website at www.sonestafarms.com or our FaceBook page at www.facebook.com/sonestafarms. Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
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    Feb. 23, 1999
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    Default

    Oh, the above was posted with the assumption that you will mostly be shooting horses. If you can be more specific about your needs, I can make other suggestions.
    Visit Sonesta Farms website at www.sonestafarms.com or our FaceBook page at www.facebook.com/sonestafarms. Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.



  6. #6
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    Nov. 2, 2001
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    Default

    but yeah, basically it depends on the make of the lens. And shooting with a high end camera, the better lenses are usually worth it.
    But a 300mm lens is pretty darn big for casual use. (I'd love to have a bigger one, but you really have to justify the price then!)
    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2007
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    Hollowed out volcano in the South Pacific.
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DownYonder View Post
    I am shopping for an additional zoom lens for my Nikon D5000. I am getting decent "at the farm" shots with a 55-200 lens but am wanting to go up. I have found a 70-300mm for around $150 and an 80-400mm for over 10x that price.

    The price on the 70-300mm sounds like it must be made pretty cheaply, but is the 80-400mm REALLY worth THAT much more?

    While I enjoy taking horse photos and seem to have a decent eye, I am an amateur and intend to remain such. I therefore have no desire to spent umpteen thousand $$$ on equipment.
    You won't get anything great out of budget-priced lenses. If you want better photos, you have to go mid-range or high-end. What is the general amount of money you are comfortable spending?
    Thus do we growl that our big toes have,
    at this moment, been thrown up from below!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2004
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    Charlotte
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    Default

    I spent my money on a Nikkor 55-200 lens. It's great quality (I think it was in the $250 range), and takes great pictures. Sure, there are things I can't do with it that I would like to, but if you're looking for basic "around the farm" shots, I wouldn't spend much more than that. It's very suitable for dressage and jumping as well.
    "Life is too short to be a slave to the whims of others." -- RugBug, COTH



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul. 20, 2007
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    Rising Sun, MD
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    Default

    You have to look at the aperture too. My most favoritest lens for shooting horses is a 70-200 2.8- but it set me back close to $1500 when I bought it.
    “While the rest of the species is descended from apes, redheads are descended from cats.” Mark Twain



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb. 23, 1999
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    Default

    tabula, I love mine, too, but really, how often does the average casual horse person need a 2.8 aperture lens?
    Visit Sonesta Farms website at www.sonestafarms.com or our FaceBook page at www.facebook.com/sonestafarms. Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.



  11. #11
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    Jul. 20, 2007
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sonesta View Post
    tabula, I love mine, too, but really, how often does the average casual horse person need a 2.8 aperture lens?
    Oh I agree- I was just saying that everyone tends to think that it's all about the zoom
    “While the rest of the species is descended from apes, redheads are descended from cats.” Mark Twain



  12. #12
    DownYonder is offline Schoolmaster Premium Member
    Original Poster
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    Default

    Thanks for all the info. I have been looking at Nikor and Tamron lenses, and have located a 70-300mm Tamron f/4-5.6 with some image stabilization. It may be a bit on the heavy side, and doesn't have a tripod mount, but it is affordable and I will continue to use a monopod for the camera body. My main concern is that it probably won't be too great in low lighting and I do occasionally shoot clinics at a covered arena that doesn't have great lighting, so will have to work around that issue. But the photos are mainly for friends, etc., and are not intended for professional use (although some of my shots have successfully been used as sales photos). I just can't justify spending in the thousands for a lens for occasional amateur use.



  13. #13
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    Feb. 23, 1999
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    Default

    When in the indoor, just use a flash. Most horses don't even notice.
    Visit Sonesta Farms website at www.sonestafarms.com or our FaceBook page at www.facebook.com/sonestafarms. Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.



  14. #14
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    Nov. 6, 2002
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    Henrico, NC 36 30'50.49" N 77 50'17.47" W
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  15. #15
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    Nov. 1, 1999
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    Shangri-LA
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    Default

    You can sometimes find good bargins on a refurbished Nikon lense at the Nikon website store.



  16. #16
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    Jan. 26, 2006
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    Fort Worth, Texas
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by js View Post
    You can sometimes find good bargins on a refurbished Nikon lense at the Nikon website store.
    or at thrift stores and some pawn shops

    My son found a Hasselblad fisheye at a thrift store for $25.00... he resold it for $2100.00



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