Please help me to select a telephoto zoom lense for nikon d60

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by indunilpd, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. indunilpd macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    I'm willing to buy a nikon d 60 and I need to select a good telephoto zoom lense for it.

    My interest is to take good quality photos of birds/other wild animals in which I may need a lense with a good zoom power.

    I tried to buy nikon coolpix p 90 but I heard that image quality is poor.
    (But it had a 24x optical zoom power)

    Will I be able to have the same zoom power or more with a nikon d60 + a zoom lense?
    If so which lense shouol I buy?

    I heard about sigma 70 - 300mm zoom lense but I dont know exactly about it.
    Will I really need a tripod with this lense?

    Is there any other lense with same zoom power and antishake property for similar price.

    Where I can buy good digital SLR from Colombo, Sri Lanka.

    I would be grateful if someone could help me.

    Thanks.
    Bye.
     
  2. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #2
    Birding is one of the most expensive types of photography. To get good pictures of large birds, you need at least 300mm, and that's if the birds are relatively tame and approachable, or if you can get into a blind that's well-positioned. For smaller birds, you need 400-1200mm. If you are shooting under canopy, or just after dawn or just before sunset when birds and wildlife are most active then you need f/2.8 lenses costing thousands of dollars. Just after that, you can get away with f/4 lenses costing a couple of thousand dollars. If you are shooting somewhere that has your subjects in relatively bright daylight (like a zoo,) then you can try slower lenses- but you must manage your expectations accordingly.

    Magnification factors are not a useful metric for DSLR lenses (or any lenses actually) a Sigma 10-20mm lens is a 2x zoom, so is a Nikon 200-400mm lens- they're completely different animals though.

    Telephoto lenses magnify shake, so tripods are the best method of shooting long telephotos. Electronic image stabilization may sometimes substitute for a tripod, but most people who are picky about image quality still shoot from a tripod.

    I think the Sigma 50-500 has HSM now, so it should autofocus on the D60, that would be your best bet if you have bright light and a relatively low budget.
     
  3. indunilpd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #3
    Thanks for helping,but another question....

    Hi

    Thanks for helping,
    Your anwer was really helpful.

    But I need to know that how far I can zoom with a sigma 70 - 300mm macro lense?

    Can it be used for telephoto zooming?

    Is there a sigma 70 - 300mm lense that used only for telephoto zooming?

    Can you please send me some telephotos taken with sigma 70-300mm lense?
    My e mail addres is indunilpd@yahoo.com

    Thanks
    Bye
     
  4. jvalente macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2009
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #4
    I don't understand what you're saying here. Any lens past about 85mm can be considered a tele lens. 70-300 is comparitively a massive telephoto. Professional bird photographers use Nikon D3's and huge lenses, usually with a big constant aperture, so they can freeze action and shoot 9 frames a second. With a d60, attaching a lens worth over 4 times the price of your body will seem a bit silly. Buy a 55-200mm VR lens, and get used to that. They sell for $200 us.
     
  5. jampat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2008
    #5
    Can anyone find the webpage with shots of the same scene at focal lengths from <16mm to 400mm? It may help this guy out, but I can't find it right now.
     
  6. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #6
    You have picked the most expensive genre of photography. The lens that you'd need will have a four digit price tag.

    And yes you will need a good tripod and the tripod will need a high quality ball head. The combined tripod and head will not be cheap.

    For this subject the D60 SLR body is not the best choice. I'd move up to one the Nikon bodies that have an internal focus motor (even if that is a used D50.) Then you can use any Nikon lens and not be limited to only those that have their own in-lens motors. In the long run the more expensive body (You should get at least the D80) will save you hundreds in the price of a lens.

    You might want to learn to walk before you learn to run and start with easier subjects. But if your goal is birds, plan ahead with a body that has the in-body motor and save for the big, long and FAST lens you will need.
     
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #7
    Lenses have two numbers that matter. One is the focal length. the one you like is 300mm. The other spec that matters is the maximum aperture. The sigma goes to f/5.6 you'd be better off with a lens that goes to f/2.8

    What can you see with a 300mm lens. Well, how close are you and how big is the subject. Here is how to mathematically figure it out.

    The CCD sensor is 24mm wide. Draw a line on paper 24mm long. The lens is 300mm long so place a dot 300mm from the 24mm line. Draw a triangle with the dot at the top and 24mm line as the base. The angle at the tip is the angle of view for a 300mm lens.

    Some examples: Lets say your subject is 240mm wide and 160mm tall. (that is rather large for a bird) and you want it to fill the frame. With a 300mm lens you would need to be three meters from the subject. (that is hard to do if the subject is a wild bird) So you settle on the subject being 1/2 the frame size, then you could do that at 6 meters distance.

    You will quickly find you need a 600mm lens so you can double your camera to bird distance to a more reasonable 12 meters. But what if you want a close up image of a small a humming bird? This is where it gets expensive or you start thinking about remotely triggered cameras. or building a "blind" and waiting for hours. or that 1,200mm lens and a massive tripod.

    Witha d60 and a 300mm lens you will be able to soot images of some birds. seaguls are somewhattame and will let you get near, you might get some acceptable seagull shots. Smaller or less tame birds will be much harder and I'm have to say the d60/300mm f/5.6 combo would be unsuited for most wild birds but could work for the easy cases.
     
  8. NinjaMonkey macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    Maryland
    #8
    Get the D60 two lens kit with the 18-55VR and 55-200mm VR lenses. This is a pretty cheap solution that'll allow you to take much better pictures than what you can get with a point and shoot.

    Like others have said bird/wildlife photography can be expensive, more expensive than I bet you want to shell out for if you have a limited knowledge of photography.
     
  9. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    #9
    I'm not sure I agree with this. I don't think there are (any or at least many) long telephotos worth buying that aren't AF-S. The only one coming to mind is the 80-400VR which even has had building rumors of being replaced within the next few months. Not to mention the subpar AF performance you will get with a non AF-S lens, something that can be important when birding.

    Secondly, everyone here seems to be assuming he's out for National Geographic photos. Yes, a good birding setup costs well over $10,000 including a supertelephoto (500mm+ lens) with a high quality matching tripod, teleconverters, powerful flash, etc. However, to get started something a lot more modest like a 70-300 will get him started, he can learn the techniques and get some usable results (300mm on his D60 is 450mm, a respectable length for entry level bird shooting) and later if he really dedicates himself to it he can work his way to the bazooka setups.

    Ruahrc
     
  10. leandroc76 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    #10
    Check out the Sigma 50-500 mm.

    It's relatively cheap.:eek:

    I have it, I can get away with shooting birds from 50 yards away! You definitely need a tripod. The sweet spot for my lens is f/9 to f/11. Your going to need a lot of light around 4-5PM in the summer when the sun is about 30 -35 degrees from the horizon. The sun cast yellow and this lens seems to accentuate the warm tones so WB accordingly.
     
  11. epicwelshman macrumors 6502a

    epicwelshman

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2006
    Location:
    Nassau, Bahamas
    #11
    That little thing? Please. What he needs is THIS... the Sigma 200-500mm f2.8. Perfect for the D60.
     
  12. indunilpd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #12
    Thanks a lot for helping me.






     
  13. indunilpd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #13

    Hi

    Thanks a lot for helping me,

    I thought of buying a nikon coolpix p 90 which has a 24x optical zoom and 12.1Mp rather than trying for a digital SLR and a zoom lense which will cost more than 1000$.

    nikon p 90 will only cost nearly 500 $ and I think it will help me for taking photos of birds.
    How will be the picture quality?......................

    Later i' ll go for a nikon d 90 which will support most of the lenses.

    If any one can help me, please contact me - indunilpd@yahoo.com

    Thanks
    Bye.
     
  14. indunilpd thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2009
    #14
    how about nikon coolpix p 90 for birding

    Hi

    Thanks a lot for helping me,

    I thought of buying a nikon coolpix p 90 which has a 24x optical zoom and 12.1Mp rather than trying for a digital SLR and a zoom lense which will cost more than 1000$.

    nikon p 90 will only cost nearly 500 $ and I think it will help me for taking photos of birds.
    How will be the picture quality?......................

    Later i' ll go for a nikon d 90 which will support most of the lenses.

    If any one can help me, please contact me - indunilpd@yahoo.com

    Thanks
    Bye.
    :)
     
  15. kallisti macrumors 65816

    kallisti

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    #15
    P90

    Just looked at the specs on the P90. Fairly impressive on paper. Crazy optical zoom range (26-624 in 35mm terms). f/2.8-5.0. 15 fps. 10.9mm diagonal sensor size (DX format sensors are 29mm and full frame is 43mm). 12.1 megapixel.

    From the reviews I've seen on the internet, the image quality seems subpar (cnet, cameralabs; sample pics available with both reviews). I don't have personal experience using it though. No clue if the image quality would be acceptable to you or not.

    In the end it will boil down to several factors:

    (1) How important is image quality to you? What are you planning on doing with the images? Family/friends? Posting on the internet? Framing and hanging on a wall? Selling?

    (2) How much money are you willing to spend?

    (3) How important is convenience? How much gear are you willing to lug around?
     
  16. iTiki macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2007
    Location:
    Maui, Hawaii
    #16
    For less than $1000. you can get a D40 and the 70-300 VR. I would take this many times over before spending $500 for a glorified P&S. You can build on the D40 with just about any lens over time and upgrade the body down the road after you have gone through DSLR learning curve. D40 is a steal right now.
     
  17. georgemann macrumors regular

    georgemann

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    Location:
    Seattle, Washington & Siem Reap, Cambodia
    #17
    I think this is pretty good advice, for a novice photographer intent on shooting wildlife, I would just substitute the D3000 or D5000 for the D40.

    George

    Nikon Digital Photographer - http://nikondp.com
     

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