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Folks: it's not OK to take other people's photos to edit and re-post. Just like we don't correct each other's spelling and grammar, we don't take it upon ourselves to decide that someone's photo needs correction. In addition, as has been emphasized before, you need to respect copyright.

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Think of ISO as just a third exposure tool that you have to balance with the other two to get the correct exposure. If you use a higher ISO, your photo will be brighter so you’ll have to adjust either the aperture or shutter speed (if you’re in a manual mode). The higher the ISO, typically you can use faster shutter speeds as you’ll have more room to darken the exposure (high iso). The downside is that a higher ISO increases more grain, or noise into the photo. Better cameras can handle higher ISOs without an issue, while lower end models and point and shoots struggle with grain once you get past ISO 800 or 1000. It’s a fine balance between having a high enough ISO to where your shutter speed and aperture is good enough but to where your photo is still good quality(without noise).

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12 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

and by not understanding why I'd want any aperture other than the max the camera is capable of (in my case, F2.4). 

A wide open aperture of f/2.4 is a very desirable feature, especially in low light situations or when a really fast shutter speed is desired. There are some draw backs though, depth of field being very shallow at f/2.4 being the main thing. Using guesstimates for a close approximation, shooting at 400mm with f/2.4 at a distance of 25 feet will give you a focal plain of approximately 1 inch, anything on either side of that inch will be out of focus, or less than perfectly sharp. At f/8 your focal plane expands to about 2.5 inches. For comparison, F/2.4, 400mm at 100 feet distance gives you about 16 inches of focal plane, which should be plenty for an individual bird but might leave the majority of a flock of birds out of focus. As nice as F/2.4 can be, it isn't the best setting for everything. The link below allows you to select camera model, focal length, f/#, and focal distance to calculate the depth of field which may be helpful in determining approximates for certain situations.

https://dofmaster.com/dofjs.html

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1 minute ago, lonestranger said:

There are some draw backs though, depth of field being very shallow at f/2.4 being the main thing. Using guesstimates for a close approximation, shooting at 400mm with f/2.4 at a distance of 25 feet will give you a focal plain of approximately 1 inch, anything on either side of that inch will be out of focus, or less than perfectly sharp.

Gawds, I never knew depth of field had anything to do with the size of the area in focus!  I understood that stuff farther away in distance would be blurry, but I didn't know it had any effect on stuff to either side but at the same range.  It sounds like I don't understand depth of field or the affects of aperture size at all!

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If you’re trying to take a closeup portrait, f/2.8 won’t be good, as the whole bird may not be in focus. If you’re trying to take more of a habitat shot, you’ll need a smaller aperture (bigger number) so more of the background/habitat is in focus. Also, at least in some lenses, if you stop down to a smaller aperture a little (on mine my max is 6.3, I normally stop down to 7.1 or 8), the photos will have some increased sharpness overall. This isn’t true for all lenses though.

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3 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Gawds, I never knew depth of field had anything to do with the size of the area in focus!  I understood that stuff farther away in distance would be blurry, but I didn't know it had any effect on stuff to either side but at the same range.  It sounds like I don't understand depth of field or the affects of aperture size at all!

A good lesson for depth of field is getting down low and shooting an object at ground level. You can actually see the focal plane form a line across the ground and see it change size as you adjust the aperture.

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8 minutes ago, IKLland said:

If you’re trying to take a closeup portrait, f/2.8 won’t be good, as the whole bird may not be in focus.

Sounds like I don't know how close 'close-up' is either.  This would explain why shots of adjacent birds at a feeder can be out of focus over even an inch or two difference in range.  I didn't realize the equipment is that sensitive!

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18 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Gawds, I never knew depth of field had anything to do with the size of the area in focus!  I understood that stuff farther away in distance would be blurry, but I didn't know it had any effect on stuff to either side but at the same range.  It sounds like I don't understand depth of field or the affects of aperture size at all!

I may have used the wrong words when I said "either side". I meant in front of or behind the focal plane, the focal plane is the same across the image from side to side. Sorry if my wording confused you.

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1 minute ago, lonestranger said:

I may have used the wrong words when I said "either side". I meant in front of or behind the focal plane, the focal plane is the same across the image from side to side. Sorry if my wording confused you.

Okay, I feel better now!  I'm still trying to get around the notion than even an inch or two in range makes a difference.

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3 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

Okay, I feel better now!  I'm still trying to get around the notion than even an inch or two in range makes a difference.

You'll also have to wrap your head around the fact that zooming in or out is another variable in the depth of field calculations that needs considering. 

Are we having fun yet? 😁

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11 minutes ago, lonestranger said:

You'll also have to wrap your head around the fact that zooming in or out is another variable in the depth of field calculations that needs considering. 

That's easy; it's still that grasping that a matter of an inch or two can make as much of a difference as I'm getting sometimes.  A while ago I played with taking the same shot at different stops but the subject was a few hundred feet away, about what I considered the max I could expect to get a useful image.  I never tried it at 25 feet or so.

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23 minutes ago, blackburnian said:

Nice, I shoot with the R7 as well (same with @IKLland and @Connor Cochrane

If you have any questions let me know, I’ve had it for 1.5 years now. What lens do you use? 

Thanks! I've got the Sigma 100-600 Contemporary but so far I've actually mostly been using an older Canon 400mm f/5.6 along with 1.4 converter. I seem to get better auto-focus performance this way & I've always really liked this lens too. Add the in camera stabilization & I like it even better. I'm sure I'm losing a little sharpness with the converter & also a little focal length compared to the Sigma but so far I don't mind. It's also quite a bit lighter then the Sigma which helps since I shoot mostly handheld. I tried using the settings for the Sigma Duade Paton recommended in the video @IKLland told me about & it does help but so far it seems the other combo does work a bit better. I'll keep experimenting though. My ultimate goal is to get the new Canon 200-800 👍. Thanks again though, if I got questions it's good to have a place to go.

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19 hours ago, stitch58 said:

Thanks! I've got the Sigma 100-600 Contemporary but so far I've actually mostly been using an older Canon 400mm f/5.6 along with 1.4 converter. I seem to get better auto-focus performance this way & I've always really liked this lens too. Add the in camera stabilization & I like it even better. I'm sure I'm losing a little sharpness with the converter & also a little focal length compared to the Sigma but so far I don't mind. It's also quite a bit lighter then the Sigma which helps since I shoot mostly handheld. I tried using the settings for the Sigma Duade Paton recommended in the video @IKLland told me about & it does help but so far it seems the other combo does work a bit better. I'll keep experimenting though. My ultimate goal is to get the new Canon 200-800 👍. Thanks again though, if I got questions it's good to have a place to go.

I only used my Sigma for a couple of weeks before I decided I needed to get a Canon lens to pair with my R5 (focus was sllloooowwww).  I loved my 400mm f/5.6.  I'm sure even with the converter the pics are going to be better than the Sigma.  

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