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Telephoto Lenses with focal lengths longer than 60mm.

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  #1  
Old 23rd April 2010
chrism_scotland chrism_scotland is offline
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Lenses for Aviation Photography

I'm looking to get myself a new DSLR after having to get rid of my E620 and then A700 in January.

I'm looking for some advice on lenses, my main type of photography is landscapes / buildings but I also have a passion for planes!!

Now to begin with I'm lucky that I live close to Edinburgh Airport and work next to Heathrow so I'm thinking about commercial jets taking off / landing rather than military jets or airshows but I was wondering what lenses in the Olympus range would offer a decent good value telephoto to give me some nice plane shots?
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Old 23rd April 2010
j.baker j.baker is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

It depends on how much you can afford.


For plane shotsL
The 70-300 with a good body (E620,E30) gives to good reach and it fairly cheap.

A getter solution would be 50-200mm with an EC14 or an EC-20. with an E30

You will need a lot of light to use Ec-20 or up the ISO to 800-1600.

You can also mount some cameras to various spotter scopes.

For buildings and landscapes.

14-44, 14-54, 12-60 and maybe the 9-18 or 7-14. The standard kits lens are cheap but very good. However I would go for a second hand 14-54 or if you can afford it the 12-60mm.

It all comes down to money
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Old 23rd April 2010
chrism_scotland chrism_scotland is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Thanks John, I was keen on Nikon but I thought the In Body IS on my old E620 was incredible, and I would miss this on a Nikon.

I liked the 14-54 I had for my E620 but I did find it a little heavy for the body at times so considering an E30 to replace it or more likely another E620 but this time with a grip,

I would love a 7-14mm lens I've heard its one of the best there is for wide angle but the 1200+ price tag is a wee bit much

9 - 18mm though I would really like!
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Old 23rd April 2010
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Greytop Greytop is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Chris,

Thinking of your aircraft photography, another possibility is the very nice Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 in 4/3 mount, a fair bit cheaper than a 50-200 but optically quality wise extremely close to it.
I've never owned one but know of several users who highly rate the lens. Another plus is that it's a constant f/2.8 throughout the zoom range but of course it's not dust or weather sealed like 50-200.

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  #5  
Old 23rd April 2010
Jim Ford Jim Ford is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

The 7-14mm is indispensable for aircraft in museums (I'll post some images). Also for buildings like this:



(I hadn't noticed it was sloping when I first put it in the gallery!)

Jim
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Old 23rd April 2010
j.baker j.baker is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

If you go for the sigma 70-200 check it before you buy it.

I ordered one two weeks ago (from Amazon), and I found that it was very very soft when used @f2.8. I had to stop it down to F4 or higher to get it sharp. When I took an image of a bright coloured object (flower) @ f2.8 the colour would appear to bleed out.

There are various posts on the QA @ sigma.
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  #7  
Old 23rd April 2010
Sharon
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

I use a 70-300mm with my E-30. I'm getting the 50-200 for my birthday so that I can take it to RIAT. Not sure I can afford the EC14 though! Ah well, there's always Christmas presents!

One of the best pictures I got of a plane was with my 40-150. I was sitting on a wall watching the Kemble Airshow from the cheap seats....otherwise known as a field near my house A Eurofighter flew overhead, so low that the sound nearly knocked me off the wall. Try taking a picture, covering your ears and holding onto a wall at the same time LOL. My ears were ringing for days after!

Sharon
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Old 23rd April 2010
Jim Ford Jim Ford is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharon View Post
My ears were ringing for days after!
Hmm, that always used to be reckoned as a sign of permanent ear damage!

Jim
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  #9  
Old 23rd April 2010
Sharon
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

I think they are OK. I've been to louder rock concerts!
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  #10  
Old 23rd April 2010
Jim Ford Jim Ford is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharon View Post
I think they are OK. I've been to louder rock concerts!
Take care of your ears! When I used to do target shooting regularly, the shooting magazines always warned that (as I said above), if you get ringing in the ears or pain from a loud noise, _permanent_ damage has been caused - no ifs or buts. The insidious bit about it is that problems don't usually show until later in life - as in my case with tinnitus.

There was an item in 'The One Show' during the week about tinnitus and the resident doctor said that lots of youngsters will inevitably get tinnitus later in life from listening to loud music through their mp3 players.

Jim
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  #11  
Old 23rd April 2010
Sharon
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Perhaps I'll get some earplugs for the Air Tattoo then I only use an ipod dock so I'm safe with the Mp3 thing
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  #12  
Old 1st July 2010
tonton1962
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Quote:
Originally Posted by j.baker View Post
If you go for the sigma 70-200 check it before you buy it.

I ordered one two weeks ago (from Amazon), and I found that it was very very soft when used @f2.8. I had to stop it down to F4 or higher to get it sharp. When I took an image of a bright coloured object (flower) @ f2.8 the colour would appear to bleed out.

There are various posts on the QA @ sigma.
Is this lens a 140-400 in 35mm, in other words the same range as the 50-200?
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  #13  
Old 4th July 2010
tonton1962
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Just came back from the airshow in Beauvechain, Belgium. Incredible weather, blue skies, etc. My experience with the E3 and 70-300 however has been very disappointing. Of the 300 pictures I took of various propeller and jet aircraft only 3 are sharp and correctly focused. All the other ones are blurry. My settings were C-AF and auto focus was set on the central AF point. All my shots started with focusing on the airplane, and then pressing the shutter for 5 or more consecutive shots. My IS was on 1 meaning horizontal and vertical stabilization, and the shutter speed was always +500, which should be more than enough.
I can only conclude that this lens is not suited for this type of photography. Which is perfectly reasonable considering its low price! Static shots however one can achieve wonderful pictures indeed.
Just my 5 cents worth of experience today.
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  #14  
Old 4th July 2010
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DerekC DerekC is offline
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

IS1 is not suitable for aviation photography as I expect most of your shots would be panning. The IS will try and correct this hence the blurred shots. The 70-300 is not the fastest to focus so I wouldn't expect to get all 5 frames in focus.
E-3 70-300 can do good aviation photos Tornado GR4 RAF Waddington air show 2008

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  #15  
Old 5th July 2010
tonton1962
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Re: Lenses for Aviation Photography

Hi Derek. Yes the IS 1 could be part of the problem and also that I fired off too many shots at once I guess. The irony of it is that i had misread the documentation and changed my IS to 1 (was on 2). Pity I can't do it over again hehe. Thanks for the info.
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