I'm just about to buy some new lenses to accompany my shiny new Nikon D500 in a month on a safari trip. In the past, I've used a Sigma 150-500mm (bought 2009 – see here) with a Nikon D90, and although this was a great combination for a beginner, I'd like to take my photography to the next level of upcoming travel
With that in mind, I'd like to spend about £ 3k on one or more new lenses, with or without a teleconverter.
It is important to me to have a range of at least 500mm to get close-ups when I'm unable to get closer to the subject. Likewise, I need a shorter range for the subjects to which I can position myself directly.
In addition, 95% of my pictures are taken in a vehicle (without doors). Image stabilization is therefore very important, although in my opinion this would be one of my drawbacks if it were necessary.
Since most photos are taken in morning and evening game drives in lower light conditions, a larger aperture would be an advantage, possibly indispensable.
- picture quality
- 100-500mm range
- Large aperture (minimum 5.6 in my view)
- Subdued image stabilization
On this basis I consider the following combination:
Nikon f / 5.6 200-500 mm (see here) – This will give me the 500mm range and good stabilization, but obviously the aperture is not ideal.
Nikon f / 4G 70-200mm (see here) – This gives me a better aperture while affecting range. It also has a stabilization.
Nikon TC 14E teleconverter (see here) – This converter is fully compatible with the second lens and partially compatible with the first, which will hopefully allow me to extend my reach beyond 500mm, but more importantly, I have the chance to use the f / 4G optimal use up to 280 mm
As much as I would like to spend more on a combination of main glasses, I just can not afford it. The question is, however, if I would buy a main lens better than the above combination.
In my opinion, the zoom range on a safari is very important, as you never know how near / far your subject will be, not to mention that it moves a lot.
When I go down Zoom Street, is the above combination a good one, based on my listed priorities, or are there any alternative lenses that better meet my needs?
Note: I can not rent lenses because my trip takes 3-4 weeks. I'll probably be driving later in the year, so leasing does not save much money in the long run