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| p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · A few post Costa Rica trip gear opinions/suggestions.... |
I thought I'd post a few thoughts on what worked and didn't work for my CR trip. Also a few new thoughts on the AF systems between 5D4, 1DX and 1DX2.
Here is what I took and a few thoughts on each piece of gear:
1)100-400II: An absolute must have IMO for CR. I used this for frogs, for hummingbird multi flash and for following the smaller hummingbirds that stick to the hedges of flowers (like volcano, snowcap and black-bellied). The main advantage of this lens was the MFD and resulting MM. Just blows everything else out of the water. If I had to go with only one lens this would be it with the 1.4TC as needed.
2) 400DOII: This lens was best for field birding around certain gardens and lodges when I couldn't get close to birds like tanagers and other things. Mostly used with 1.4 or 2.0TC for reach but also used in one of the multi flash setups where I could move back enough for 400mm. But 100-400II would have done that just as well. Probably out of my 3 lenses the one I'd leave behind if I had to narrow it down to only 2 lenses.
3) 600II: For me an essential lens, I regretted not bringing it to Ecuador back in 2015 and I was so glad to have it for Quetzals especially as it was 5:30AM and dark and I needed about 600-800mm of reach and f/4 sure helped at 600mm. I also used this for field birding and walking trails to get maximum reach on smaller, more shy birds.
If I had to only take 2 lenses it would be 600 and 100-400II. I was still happy with bringing all 3 but could easily have worked with just those 2. I would have missed the 600 a lot but would have missed more things without the 100-400Ii than without the 600.
As far as anything I wish I had brought, the only thing may have been a 100 or 180 macro for the frogs but the 100-400II with TC and extension tube did just fine, probably as much MM as the macro lens would have provided at the suitable working distances from the frogs. I also brought a 24-70/4 and used it for maybe 15mins over 13 days. iPhone was fun for slow motion video of the hummers around feeders and simple shots of the lodges, rooms, people etc.
And finally a little about the bodies....this is where I really was surprised at how much of a difference the 1DX2 pulled ahead of the other two in lower light focus and consistency of getting focus on lower contrast targets. It got to the point that I didn't use my 1DX and my 5D4 I just used for the multi-flash as it had more pixels and you couldn't really shoot high FPS as the flashes would start dropping. 7FPS of the 5D4 was great for that scenario. The 1DX2 though just outperformed the other two in a big way. I ended up shooting it all the time. I'd have the 1DX on another lens just in case but whatever lens I thought would be the right focal length for the current target I'd switch the 1DX2 over to it and not just leave one camera on one lens all day. I hadn't noticed this drastic AF difference back at home in better light but in this type of jungle, early morning, cloud forest type light the 1DX2 was significantly better.
So those are my thoughts after the trip. If anyone has any questions feel free to ask.