Pointers By Paul's Photo
My Favorite Lens
Photographers all have a favorite lens, a favorite tool that captures our favorite pictures and creates the look and feel we desire. A painter has a favorite brush, a chef has a favorite knife, we photographers have a go-to lens. All of the lenses in my bag are great but one lens rises above the rest in versatility, performance and quality.
My NIKON Z 400mm 2.8 TC is THAT lens. Why? It captures more of my award- winning photos than any other lens in my kit. A 400mm 2.8 is a magical lens! The Canon RF, Nikon Z and Sony GM 400mm 2.8’s are all amazing and highly recommended! Yes, they are as much money as my mom & dad’s first house but 100% worth every penny to capture your photos with versatility, performance and quality.
Versatility of the 400mm 2.8 makes her a powerfully lens for sports, wildlife, portraits and scenery photography, especially when combined with the 1.4 Tele-Extender (built-in to the Nikon, accessory for Canon and Sony). You can easily choose 400mm 2.8 or 560mm 4 with virtually no loss in picture quality, size or weight! Most think of 400mm as a sports lens. True, it’s awesome for sports and action! The focus speed, low-light capability and beautiful bokeh (out of focus background) are legendary. Baseball, Football, Soccer, Surfing and Track are prime targets for the 400mm 2.8 on the sidelines.
In the jeep on safari or in the tundra buggy or at the marsh 400mm 2.8 is a sweet lens for birds and mammals. Elephants, Lions and Polar Bears all look amazing at 400 or 560mm! Small birds in the backyard or at the shore are captured while perched or flying. The modern 400mm 2.8’s are small enough to hand-hold or photograph effectively on a monopod or tripod.
Surprisingly the 400mm 2.8 is a fantastic scenery and landscape lens with amazing compression and reach. Compression is the ability to squeeze foreground and background together and flatten distances and create beauty in two dimensions. Reach to pull faraway objects closer and create fantastic photos of subjects miles from the camera the fill the frame.
Yes, 400mm 2.8 is also a superb lens for portraits of people and animals. The 8.5 foot minimum focus distance gets a stunning close-up without getting in their face! Faces look appealing and the backgrounds are creamy soft… that’s the look and feel we want in our photos!
Performance is a prime reason for loving the 400mm 2.8. Lightning fast auto focus (on the modern Canon RF, Nikon Z and Sony GM) offers unique abilities to capture action in sports and wildlife photography. Pin-point accuracy in focus is imperative for superb portrait and landscape photography. Bright 2.8 aperture and superior optics provides crisp, clear and detailed photos in low-light and mixed light conditions. Whether it’s sunrise on the savannah or a dimly lit gym 400mm 2.8 will produce amazing photos with crisp- contrast and deep shadow detail.
Quality photos with crisp details, bright colors and fine gradation are the hallmark of a 400mm 2.8. The new NIKON Z 400mm 2.8 TC is clearly the sharpest lens in my bag and maybe the finest quality lens I have ever used!
Yes, a 400mm 2.8 is not for every photographer. If you can afford $10,000 plus and carry a 5 pound lens you will be rewarded with exemplary pictures. You will enjoy versatility, performance and quality beyond expectations. You will have the opportunity to create stunning sports, wildlife, scenery and portrait photos… and whatever you can imagine!