a D800 test for Wildlife

D800 Tests Birds on the Arch
So I now have a D800, but there is always a steep learning curve with any new camera, some sensors take more work then others.  Once I have the development of a particular RAW file sorted I create an Adobe Lightroom preset.

For now I am using my D200 development settings and these look pretty good but I will continue to develop my processing style and work flow.

On Saturday I did my first real test with the D800.  Up to now I have been shooting my wife in low light in the evening, not a real test.  This Saturday I dug out my tripod and my 70-200mm f/2.8 and spent some of the morning photographing garden birds.  I had spent some of my time earlier in the week customising my settings so this was my first real test.

The results were not good, I had some inconsistent settings with my memory banks and thus the results were very inconsistent.  So Saturday night I read up on settings that other photographers were used and reset the camera.

This sunny Sunday morning I again got out my tripod and this time got my 300mm f/2.8.  I shot from the kitchen dinner area through the glass of the french doors.

This time I was very impressed with the results.

I had set the ISO to auto with a cap of 3200 ISO, and a minimum shutter speed of 1/800 of a second.  Occasionally I changed the settings to 2 x focal length which with a 300mm lens meant the camera would not the shutter speed drop below 1/600 and stopped down the lens a little to f/5.5 – f-8, for stationary birds.

I also played with the focus modes; I many used group 21 points but occasional 3D focus settings which tended to shoot to the closest subject.

We are very lucky where we live, I have installed quite a few bird feeders but we also have a couple of Yew trees that the black birds love.

Anyway here are the results for you to see. You may note my labels say D200, this is because my Lightroom preset labelled them that way.

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