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Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎05-30-2018

Re: Lens for Polar Bear

HAHA I will. Do you think tripod is necessary? if so which one should I have?
Now I have Manfrotto befree.
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 2,502
Registered: ‎02-17-2016

Re: Lens for Polar Bear

Autofocus will work fine on a relatively slow moving bear. A tripod might be too cumbersome for a moving bear. which is why we suggested monopods or gimbal/monopod above.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 6,546
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Lens for Polar Bear


@jacky8087 wrote:
HAHA I will. Do you think tripod is necessary? if so which one should I have?
Now I have Manfrotto befree.

Not enough tripod for shooting wildlife with a super telepphoto lens, IMHO.  It could work if you do not raise the center column.  That lens and camera combo would be top heavy with the center column fully extended.  It will almost certainly topple once you start moving the camera/lens [ 6D & 150-600 ] around. 

 

A tripod is good for when you are relatively stationary, and not moving around much.  Not unless you will be setting yourself up in a blind somewhere, use a monopod and high quality tilt head.  A ball head won’t work well on a monopod, and you pan by turning the monopod.  I recommend the Kirk MPA-2 head because of its’ strength and friction control.

One additional thing to consider are the elements.  Take along at least two rain/weather covers, a primary and a backup.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 4,529
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Lens for Polar Bear


@Waddizzle wrote:

@jacky8087 wrote:
HAHA I will. Do you think tripod is necessary? if so which one should I have?
Now I have Manfrotto befree.

Not enough tripod for shooting wildlife with a super telepphoto lens, IMHO.  It could work if you do not raise the center column.  That lens and camera combo would be top heavy with the center column fully extended.  It will almost certainly topple once you start moving the camera/lens [ 6D & 150-600 ] around. ...


Waddizzle often makes the (perfectly valid) point that raising a tripod's center column raises the center of gravity of the camera/tripod assembly and makes it less stable. But that effect can be compensated for by hanging a weight, such as a bag of sand, from the bottom end of the center column. (Most center columns have a hook or ring to facilitate that.) The weight, if it's heavy enough, lowers the COG back to where it should be to restore the necessary stability.

Bob
Boston, Massachusetts USA
Honored Contributor
Posts: 6,546
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Lens for Polar Bear


@RobertTheFat wrote:

@Waddizzle wrote:

@jacky8087 wrote:
HAHA I will. Do you think tripod is necessary? if so which one should I have?
Now I have Manfrotto befree.

Not enough tripod for shooting wildlife with a super telepphoto lens, IMHO.  It could work if you do not raise the center column.  That lens and camera combo would be top heavy with the center column fully extended.  It will almost certainly topple once you start moving the camera/lens [ 6D & 150-600 ] around. ...


Waddizzle often makes the (perfectly valid) point that raising a tripod's center column raises the center of gravity of the camera/tripod assembly and makes it less stable. But that effect can be compensated for by hanging a weight, such as a bag of sand, from the bottom end of the center column. (Most center columns have a hook or ring to facilitate that.) The weight, if it's heavy enough, lowers the COG back to where it should be to restore the necessary stability.


Yes, a sand bag could stabilize it, but who wants to lug a bag sand around. Not me.  A monopod is a great tool when you are on the move, especially with a big 150-600.  Yeah, those lenses can be handheld, but for how long?  Having support helps.

 

Besides, the real problem with the “BeFree” travel tripod is that it is only rated at 8.8 pounds load capacity.  No doubt, the head itself plays a large role in coming up with that figure.  In any case, 8.8 pounds is far too light for the camera lens combo.  The head lacks friction control, which is a must have feature with a ball head.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 9,578
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Lens for Polar Bear

[ Edited ]

"Do you think tripod is necessary?"

 

Personally I would not take one.  I might take my monopod. Some cruise lines do not allow tripods so check with yours if you decide to take one.  Monopods are almost always approved.

Check out the Tamron G2. It will work beautifully with your camera. It will be totally handholdable.  You might want to practice a bit before you go so it isn't a learn on the fly situation.   You should be shooting in reasonable lighting conditions.  Unless you try some dusk or dawn shots the SS and AF should be of no concern.

A close friend of mine just got back from Africa.  He took the Siggy S on a 1Dx Mk II and did not take a tripod.  His shots are fantastic.

 

You are gone too long to rent so forget that idea.  But you might want to take one of the better Powershot P&S cameras.  I always take one. I have a G1x.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV, along with, a lot of other stuff.
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎05-30-2018

Re: Lens for Polar Bear

Many Thanks for all your suggestions. I think I will get the Tamron G2 and monopod with a gimbal.
Honored Contributor
Posts: 6,546
Registered: ‎08-13-2015

Re: Lens for Polar Bear


@jacky8087 wrote:
Many Thanks for all your suggestions. I think I will get the Tamron G2 and monopod with a gimbal.

Personally, I have never used a gimbal, so my experience with them is observation and logic. Stick to a tilt head llike the Kirk MPA-2 with a monopod.  I do not think polar bears will be taking flight, nor moving very quickly.

 

Gimbals tend to run large, and require a stable platform to properly balance, something which a monopod many not give you.  Because of the way they need to be balanced, I would think that a gimbal would work better with a prime, than a variable length zoom.  As the length of a zoom changes, so does its’ CoG, Center of Gravity, which changes how well it balances.  You could balance it fully extended, and lock it down, though.

 

BTW, that is a pretty good choice of lens.  Get in some practice with it.  You probably want to use it mostly at f/8 aperture.

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"I don't rent software. I use Photoshop CS6, ACR 9.8 and Lightroom 6.8 ."
VIP
Posts: 9,578
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Lens for Polar Bear

"I think I will get the Tamron G2 and monopod with a gimbal."

 

You don't really need any head on a monopod.  You can get a ball head but it isn't necessary.  Just bolt the monopod to the lens.  Less is more sometimes.

 

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV, along with, a lot of other stuff.
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,611
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Lens for Polar Bear


@ebiggs1 wrote:

"I think I will get the Tamron G2 and monopod with a gimbal."

 

You don't really need any head on a monopod.  You can get a ball head but it isn't necessary.  Just bolt the monopod to the lens.  Less is more sometimes.

 


I agree... since it's a monopod, you can tilt it as needed.  If you want to do some extreme tilting... then maybe a ballhead would be an nice addition.

 

A gimbal head is going to be big and take up a bit of space when packing for travel.  

 

The benefit of a gimbal is that when used with a tripod, you can adjust the gimbal to neutrally balance the camera at it's center of mass.  You do this, using arca-swiss type rails to slide the camera forward or backward to balance it (camera + lens).  Once you find that  balance point, the platform of the gimbal can be raised or lowered to find that balance point as well.  Now you've balanced it front to back and top to bottom.    At THIS point, you can point the camera anywhere you want and you don't have to snug down the axes ... the camera will just stay wherever you point it.  This allows the photographer to treat the camera "like a tailgunner" ... say you were shooting birds in flight.  You want stability but you don't want to have to lock it down because that would prevent you from tracking the subjects.  That's the major benefit of a gimbal.  You can "let go" and it'll just stay there.  Obviously you cannot just "let go" of a monopod (it would fall over and crash).  A gimbal doesn't offer the same benefit on a monopod.

 

When you're on a monopod without a head, you can also swivel or tilt as needed ... just not as extreme on the "tilt" side of things.  e.g. to point "striaght overhead" would require that you lay the monopod down on the ground.  That's the limitation.  But as you're unlikely to need to point to anything nearly overhead, that's usually not an issue.  If you want to be able to tilt it up or down to more extremes without having to lean the monopod so much, you can add a ballhead to it (I use a ballhead that has a "tension" know in addition to the brake knob.  This allows me to apply some friction so I can push it around without needing to lock it in place and it still gives me support.

 

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
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