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Tools & Techniques for Nature, Outdoors, Wildlife & Underwater Videography.

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Old July 9th, 2011, 11:45 PM   #16
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Location: Southport, England
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Re: Wildlife with EX3 and Nikon 80-200

Thanks Steve, I did realise that the EX3 was better than the XLH1 (or XDCAM EX is better than HDV). I stick a nanoFlash on my XLH1 which compensates a bit though I hate all those cables!

I was interested in your opinion of the Nikon 80-400, which if good on an EX3 should be good on a XLH1 albeit with a 50% almost higher crop factor.

I miss tape and I miss editing in iMovie(06) instead of FCP7. I sometimes wonder whether we really had reached the limits of tape with HDV or the manufacturers just wanted to push SS.
Interesting to read on the GH2 forum about some Polish geezer who's managed to tweak AVCHD to produce 100mbps.

Pity Canon won't make a interchangeable lens version of the XF305, with a nice big long super-telephoto option based on their Broadcast lenses.

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Old July 11th, 2011, 03:58 PM   #17
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Re: Wildlife with EX3 and Nikon 80-200

I haven't used the Nikon 80-400 on an XLH1, and haven't really paid attention to the "softness" issues you read about at 400mm. I generally use it at full 400mm to good effect. It is definitely a cheaper piece of equipment than the Canon 100-400, lighter weight. I prefer Canon's push-pull zoom to the Nikon's twist one. I don't notice any difference in light collecting ability. I shot the Canon mostly at f 5.6 to f 8 and do the same with the Nikon. The Nikon manual iris ring took some getting used to after the Canon setup, but that said, it allows you to turn it and stop between clicks, not just at the designated values (5.6, 8, 11 etc).
This gives very fine control over exposure. One other advantage to the XLH1 is the fact that on the EX3 the only way to adjust shutter speed is to scroll through the viewfinder until you hit the shutter speed, push the button, then scroll again to get what you want. Not great when you are in a hurry.
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Old September 24th, 2011, 10:36 AM   #18
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Re: Wildlife with EX3 and Nikon 80-200

I've used a 80-200 Nikon and a 100-300 and 50-500 Sigma on a Sony EX3 for a couple of years. While the image can be very good at times (usually when in the F4-8 range and in the middle of the focal lengths), I finally splurged and bought a real 2/3 video lens (Canon 17x7 with 2x) and I'm happy I did.

The image quality is much, much better throughout all iris settings/zoom lengths. Plus, I have the auto features available (e.g., iris) which is nice when the animal is moving (e.g., from prairie into the forest). And the lens, coupled with the EX3, is incredible in low light. Another advantage is the capability to go from wide to extreme tele without changing lens. Also, I can use a remote zoom and focus controller so I'm not having to touch the lens to adjust these settings while filming.

Yes, a 2/3rds lens is a lot of money but the combination of improved image quality plus all the other benefits makes it worthwhile. You can sometimes pick up a used version, or the Fuji equivalent, for under $10k. My 2-cents worth.
Sony EX3, EX1, FX7, CX7, HC3, Vegas 8.0
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Old September 28th, 2011, 03:44 PM   #19
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Re: Wildlife with EX3 and Nikon 80-200

I used the Nikon 80-400 for both still photography and for use on a JVC 700. It's sharp out to about 350 then softens, and it's slow. If you have a 80-200 F2.8, which is a great lens, you can also put Nikon 1.4 converter on it for more magnification. You'll lose about one stop of light but gain another .4 of magnification and still have sharpness out to 420mm, better than a 80-400 past 350. Several Mfgs made 1.4 converters for Nikon but only buy a Nikon brand. Just a thought.
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Old September 29th, 2011, 10:57 AM   #20
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Re: Wildlife with EX3 and Nikon 80-200

I fully agree with Mike, except that a 80-200 with 1.4 converter brings it to 280 and not to 420 (that's what you get with a 300 and 1.4 converter)
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