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Author Topic: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?  (Read 10687 times)

Morlin

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Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« on: November 14, 2013, 04:21:02 PM »
Getting more and more sure about that I will empty my account in a couple of month for a 600mm.
I don´t have any gear at all to use with a "great white" so for you who use them or another one of the big ones what do you recommend.

What I know I need is:

Gimbal head = Any suggestions? Thinking of getting a Wimberley because so many are using them and seems satisfied.

Tripod = Thinking of Gitzo GT3542XLS. I know that it´s long but might be useful. Any other suggestions?

Replacement foot / "Arca Swiss plate" = Not sure if I need it. Do you recommend it? Pros and cons?

Quick release clamp = Have no idea if that is useful.

Camo-cover for the lens. = Lens coat or any other brand you recommend?

"Leg warmers" for tripod = Lens coat or any other brand you recommend?

A long list and I guess some might have better ideas than me of what I need. RRS is too expensive when it comes to tripods so even if they are better than Gitzo I think I will be satisfied with a less expensive tripod than RRS.

I have no friends that uses lenses like this so there is no one I can ask for advise. Only times I have seen these lenses is on fairs and those are too crowded to get advises from sales people.

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Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« on: November 14, 2013, 04:21:02 PM »

mackguyver

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2013, 04:39:19 PM »
I'd add insurance to that list, if you don't have it already. 

A smaller bag to carry the lens is also nice to have - LightWare, Tamron, and others sell soft bags/cases that are more convenient than the huge Canon hard case.

Also, I have the RRS foot replacement for my 300 2.8 and it's convenient because it takes up less room, the plate can't get loose or twist, etc.

I didn't care for the Lenscoat, personally, but they graciously refunded my money.  I just found it too conspicuous (read: redneck) for use anywhere other than the woods, and the covers over the controls were really annoying.  Sure, you can cut them out, but for $90+ it just didn't seem right.  Obviously they sell a lot of covers, so I'm probably in the minority here.

Also, both extenders, if you don't own them already, and possibly the 25mm extension tube if you shoot close subjects.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2013, 04:45:15 PM by mackguyver »
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East Wind Photography

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2013, 04:44:55 PM »
Get the full wimberly not the sidekick.  Get the biggest carbon fiber tripod you can afford.  Lenscoats really don't do much but a dark colored one will help heat your lens in cold weather.  And it should be removed in the summer so that it does not overheat.  There is a reason it is white and not black.

Add a 1.4xiii extender.  It will work with a 2xiii but at f8.

Morlin

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2013, 04:50:32 PM »
Insurance is allready checked so I will sign that one when I purchase the lens.

I have the TC 2x mkiii and thinking of getting the 1,4. The 1,4 seems better for the image quality.

Some kind of camouflage cover is important for me and the lens will only be used for wild life photography in the woods but I understand your point.

The RRS foot plate seems really good. Do they fit in any gimbal head or do I need some kind of "quick release kind of thing"?

Never thought of extension tubes but a great advise.

Will look around a lot for a good bag also. I know that Lowepro has one that some people recommend.

This will get expensive! But it´s my only interest so. I sold my motorbike recently to be able to afford a great white instead =) It was a hard separation but I guess and hope I will enjoy having a 600mm.

candc

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2013, 06:31:23 PM »
i would suggest a bean bag rest. i got one from gander mountain that is meant for a rifle shooters stock in the back, not the big one for the front. its great for shooting out of a car, it will perch on the window upside down or you can use it right side up over the hood or on the roof. works great and its only about 15 bucks.

don't forget to get a donkey or a pack mule whichever is available in your area you will need it but you and the donkey will be smiling for sure, that's a  great great lens, i have been thinking about getting one too.

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2013, 06:55:36 PM »
I bought mine used from a guy going to the 800.  I already had a heavy tripod, one that would bring the lens up to eye level and more without raising the center column.
The guy bought a Sprinter camper van with a pop up or open up roof so he could stand in the camper with his camera and lens mounted and shoot from the van.(Yes, the van was camouflaged)  So don't forget to add $150 - 500K for one of those!  A complete editing suite, internet, and generator were added, of course.
 
Neuro might tell you if RRS is planning to offer one. ;)
 
 
http://www.sprinter-rv.com/2012/09/11/pimped-out-sprinter-conversion-for-pro-photography/
 
http://www.sportsmobile.com/3_photographers.html

wtlloyd

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2013, 07:10:06 PM »
Wimberley kinda messed up on ver 2 of their gymbal..you can't adjust the "drag" like you could on ver 1. Mongoose 3.5 is a popular had now especially with the new lighter super t
'tele lenses. I really prefer dropping the lens down on tele he saddle ( the clamp is built in by the way). These things matter at 5 am and below freezing. Another reason to use the lens wrap ; the lens is no warmer than ambient and you'll be wearing little better than liners if you expect to feel your camera controls. Lows pro makes a pretty good bag for big glass. Oh, and don't let  the lens hang from the camera mount such as when you have the strap around your neck. Definite tail wags dog situation. The lens comes with a strap for a r3ason.
 Sorry for typos ( phone)
« Last Edit: November 14, 2013, 07:12:26 PM by wtlloyd »

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2013, 07:10:06 PM »

candc

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2013, 07:40:04 PM »
I bought mine used from a guy going to the 800.  I already had a heavy tripod, one that would bring the lens up to eye level and more without raising the center column.
The guy bought a Sprinter camper van with a pop up or open up roof so he could stand in the camper with his camera and lens mounted and shoot from the van.(Yes, the van was camouflaged)  So don't forget to add $150 - 500K for one of those!  A complete editing suite, internet, and generator were added, of course.
 
Neuro might tell you if RRS is planning to offer one. ;)
 
 
http://www.sprinter-rv.com/2012/09/11/pimped-out-sprinter-conversion-for-pro-photography/
 
http://www.sportsmobile.com/3_photographers.html


You can get a donkey for 35 bucks around here but that van is way better, I would get that instead!

danski0224

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2013, 08:06:02 PM »
Lenses like that should only be purchased in pairs, I'll take the extra one and hold it for safekeeping....

Custom Brackets has a nice gimbal.
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2013, 08:53:14 PM »
Here's what I use with my 600 II:

  • Tripod: Carbon fiber, get one one without a center column and make sure it's tall enough given your height for eye level viewing (the viewfinder will be 8-9" above the tripod platform), but allow for extra height to set up on an incline or/and pointing the lens upward (VF gets lower) without needing to stoop.  I'd go with Gitzo or Really Right Stuff, personally I have the RRS TVC-33 (I'm 5'7" on a good day). Get three leg sections if that will be tall enough and the collapsed length isn't too long, else four leg sections (not significantly less stable than three with these excellent brands, but takes longer to set up).
  • Gimbal head: The Wimberley II is the most popular, and works well.  I prefer the side mount design, and I have the RRS PG-02 LLR.  That style allows you to easily reach under the lens to access the MF and focus preset rings.  There are other brands, Wimberley has a side mount gimbal (different from the Sidekick) and there's the 4th Gen Mongoose.  I'd stay away from those - when used with a 600, the non-RRS side mounts require a low profile replacement lens foot, and such a foot cannot be used as a handle to carry the lens. The RRS gimbal is adjustable laterally, and I like that it comes apart into two pieces for easier transport.  Also, the PG designation is pano-gimbal - adding a multipurpose rail converts the gimbal into a full multirow pano head for standard lenses.   
  • Leveling base: A tripod accessory that makes using a gimbal much easier (not needed for a ballhead, but does allow proper single row panning with a ballhead).  Basically, it spares you from fiddling with the legs to get the platform level; a tilted platform for the gimbal means a tilted pan if you're tracking a horizontally-moving subject.  I have the RRS leveling base with clamp, and I have dovetails on my gimbal head and my RRS BH-55 LR ballhead, so I can easily swap them out.   
  • Replacement foot: More compact than the Canon foot with a lens plate, and you need one or the other to attach to the clamp on the gimbal head (the quick release clamp you asked about comes with the heads).  The other issue with the Canon foot is balance with a gripped/1-series body and 2x TC. The RRS LCF-53 is the way to go there, for the reasons listed in this linked post 
  • Monopod and tilt head: A tripod is great if you're not moving around much, but if you're hiking with frequent stops to shoot, a monopod is better.  I use my monopod more than the tripod in the warmer months of the year, the tripod more in winter (eagle nests, etc.).  I have the RRS MC-34 and MH-02 Pro tilt head. 
  • Canon 52mm drop-in CPL: Really the only option if you want a polarizer, which is great if you're shooting near water, etc.
  • Backpack: I have the Lowepro Lens Trekker 600 AW II, works great, holds the 600 with body and 2x TC mounted.  It's too long for airline carryon, the Lowepro Flipside 500 AW would work for that (bare lens), but I'd rather pack the hood in checked luggage and carry the lens on in my Storm im2500 hard case. 
  • Carry strap: I use a Blackrapid Sport-L to transfer the weight of the lens to my shoulder when walking. The Sport-L is designed so the lens hangs on the left side of your body (so you can raise it to your eye with the left hand and press the shutter with your right.  I have a Kirk 1" clamp on the strap that attaches to the foot. 
  • Rain cover: I have the one from Lenscoat, works well.  Provides better camo coverage than the neoprene sleeves when shooting from a tripod, even in dry weather. 

Hope that helps...
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candc

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2013, 09:26:22 PM »
+1 on the black rapid sport l. With a heavy tele you attach to the foot and it hangs level on your left side. You stabilize it with your left hand while walking  and your right hand is free. You also have the option of a sling bag on your right side which is the way most are meant to be carried

takesome1

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2013, 09:27:43 PM »
You have been given some good suggestions. I use the Wimberely II and Gitzo's best legs and it works great.

I didn't see this suggestion, the Wimberley F-1 Telephoto Flash Bracket. It is one I use when mounting a flash.
You will need a remote cord to connect from the top of the cameras to the flash.
It puts the flash closer to the front of the lens.
It gets the flash up above the camera.
It is sturdy enough you can actually use it to hold the lens and body with when you hand hold.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/240877-REG/Wimberley_F_1_Telephoto_Combo.html


neuroanatomist

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2013, 09:49:33 PM »
You have been given some good suggestions. I use the Wimberely II and Gitzo's best legs and it works great.

I didn't see this suggestion, the Wimberley F-1 Telephoto Flash Bracket. It is one I use when mounting a flash.
You will need a remote cord to connect from the top of the cameras to the flash.
It puts the flash closer to the front of the lens.
It gets the flash up above the camera.
It is sturdy enough you can actually use it to hold the lens and body with when you hand hold.

I use the RRS B91-QR with an FA-QREX2 extender for a flash.  I started with an OC-E3 cord, now I use an ST-E3-RT to trigger the 600EX-RT for a wireless solution. 

If you'll be using a flash with the 600 II, I'd get a Better Beamer for it.  Be careful in sunlight, the Better Beamer is also called the Better Burner because it can melt holes in your flash or camera body if the sun is at the right (wrong!) angle...
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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2013, 09:49:33 PM »

candc

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2013, 09:56:02 PM »
Looks like we lost morlin, I guess he is overseas dreaming about his new 600, sigh. oh well, doesn't stop us from yammering.

East Wind Photography

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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2013, 11:08:36 PM »
Here's what I use with my 600 II:

  • Backpack: I have the Lowepro Lens Trekker 600 AW II, works great, holds the 600 with body and 2x TC mounted.  It's too long for airline carryon, the Lowepro Flipside 500 AW would work for that (bare lens), but I'd rather pack the hood in checked luggage and carry the lens on in my Storm im2500 hard case. 


I have the same case and is the best I've found for carrying it around or hiking.  I've found that if you remove the camera body and carry that in your coat or vest pocket you can squeeze the 600 AW II under the seat.  It's not an easy maneuver but you can get it there.  Put your rolling gear case up in the overhead.  :)


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Re: Things to get when you purchase a 600mm?
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2013, 11:08:36 PM »