Any feedback on a NIKKOR 500mm F4.0 P ED-IF?

KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
edited August 2013 in Nikon DSLR cameras
Hi,

Here in Nuuk someone is offering a NIKKOR 500mm F4.0 P ED-IF for sale. He wants about USD1K for it, and I wonder if that is a good deal? I have the 80-400mm, but that of course is an entirely different beast. I am using my 80-400mm with the TC14E II, but I think the f/stop is around f/8 @ 500mm, so a 500mm f/4 would be a significant improvement.

And, pardon my ignorance, but how would this perform on my D800 in regards to focus? It is not an AF lens, but the D800 has the focusing capabilities does it not? I believe with a P lens, I have to focus manually, but I can use the >o< AF indicator in the viewfinder for aid. Also, it should have the chip that enables compatibility with my D800???
Post edited by Killerbob on

Comments

  • dissentdissent Posts: 1,290Member
    This guy has some nice things to say about the lens
    http://nikonglass.blogspot.com/2008/05/nikkor-mf-500mm-f4p.html
    - Ian . . . [D7000, D7100; Nikon glass: 35 f1.8, 85 f1.8, 70-300 VR, 105 f2.8 VR, 12-24 f4; 16-85 VR, 300 f4D, 14E-II TC, SB-400, SB-700 . . . and still plenty of ignorance]
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @Killerbob: What are you intentions for this lens, given its focal length? If it is for action shots, such as BIF or objects that are moving fast, I would be hesitant in getting such a lens in the 500mm focal length, that lacks AF. Your 80-400 will give you far better keepers than this one. Consider putting those funds toward a 300 2.8 or 400 2.8 :P
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @Killerbob: What are you intentions for this lens, given its focal length? If it is for action shots, such as BIF or objects that are moving fast, I would be hesitant in getting such a lens in the 500mm focal length, that lacks AF. Your 80-400 will give you far better keepers than this one. Consider putting those funds toward a 300 2.8 or 400 2.8 :P
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    It's as much for animal shoots, birds, reindeers, musk ox, whales, seals, etc., as it is for capturing faces at events. Not really into BIF, so the lack of AF does not worry me. I know that it has bugged me a few times that the 80-400mm is f/4.5-5.6, and one stop more with the TC14-II.

    The TC14-II will work on the 500mm, and I'll effectively have a 700mm f/5.6 lens. It has all the parts as well, the box, as well as the insert Pol filter. At USD1K I think it is a bargain.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,168Member
    Another option is to find a modified TC16A (has to be modified to work on modern DSLR's), which has the ability to sort of auto focus manual focus telephoto lenses.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    A bargain if you have a use for it. And for any action, I have shot thousands of moving vehicles with a manual focus, but it takes a lot of patience and practice. One eventually learns the same technique as the predictive focus AF lenses. You attain focus and wind the ring automatically.
    Msmoto, mod
  • kyoshinikonkyoshinikon Posts: 411Member
    If I were in your shoes Id get it... Great for action sports and full body sports portraits
    “To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.” - Bresson
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I just picked it up, and it works great on my D800. Forgot I had to fix the Aperture @ f/22, and lock the ring, but after doing that it works fine. It is possible to get tack sharp when focusing using the LV magnified:)

    One thing though, I guess Nikon Denmark was wrong when they said it would work with my TC-14II. It will not physically fit, and I guess that's a no-go. So, anyone know where I pick up a modified TC-16A?
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,168Member
    edited August 2013
    eBay is your best bet for finding a TC16A.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    edited August 2013
    I hate buying things of eBay - and most of the "merchants" will not ship to Greenland. I was more thinking real online shops?
    Post edited by Killerbob on
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,168Member
    It has been out of production for a long time, very unlikely to find it in a shop.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    OK, this is confusing me...

    There are plenty of merchants who all state that the modified TC16A will work on my D800/500mm P ED-IF combination, but on the web are also some who say it does not. Anyone here on NR who have tried the combi?
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    edited September 2013
    Hi Killerbob, I have not tried this specific combo, but the confusion may be because there are two different kinds of typical TC modifications.

    Consider two aspects of the TC16A: the mechanical interface to your 500mm, and the electronic interface to your D800.

    1) Mechanically, the TC16A should mount your 500mm fine. However, electrically, it will not AF with your D800. So if you want AF, you will need a TC16A with modified electronics. Otherwise, it will still work in MF mode.

    2) The TC14 mentioned before has the opposite problem. Electrically, the TC14 is compatible with the D800, but mechanically, it will not fit the 500mm without modification. So in order for this combination to work, you need a TC14 with a slightly modified mount (basically a small metal tab just needs to be filed off). However, you will not be able to AF with this combination.
    Post edited by Ade on
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    Thanks for the explanation...

    I went ahead and ordered a modified TC16A from a reputable eBay merchant in Canada. This should work with my D800, give me limited AF, and of course effectively an 800mm f/5.6 lens:)

    All-in-all USD1'200.
  • PhotobugPhotobug Posts: 4,837Member
    Killerbob...keep us posted on how the modified TC16A works with this equipment.
    D750 & D7100 | 24-70 F2.8 G AF-S ED, 70-200 F2.8 AF VR, TC-14E III, TC-1.7EII, 35 F2 AF D, 50mm F1.8G, 105mm G AF-S VR | Backup & Wife's Gear: D5500 & Sony HX50V | 18-140 AF-S ED VR DX, 55-300 AF-S G VR DX |
    |SB-800, Amaran Halo LED Ring light | MB-D16 grip| Gitzo GT3541 + RRS BH-55LR, Gitzo GM2942 + Sirui L-10 | RRS gear | Lowepro, ThinkTank, & Hoodman gear | BosStrap | Vello Freewave Plus wireless Remote, Leica Lens Cleaning Cloth |
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I finally got the TC16A, and it works with the D800/500mm F4.0 P ED-IF combination. I now effectively have an 800mm lens:)

    Only thing was that I have to go into the Menu/Controls/f9 Customize command dials, and change the Aperture setting to OFF, i.e. Aperture ring. It seems this makes the aforementioned combination work, and it has no affect on my other lenses. So, basically I don't know what this does, but it seems to work with the 500mm.

    I would post some pictures, but the weather is lousy, rainy and stormy, and that'll have to wait...

    One question; the EXIF data says it is a 145mm lens, how do I go about changing that?
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,168Member
    I don't think you can, since it is not an AI/AI-S lens.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    The EXIF will always show 145mm even with AI/AI-S lenses. That's because the chip inside the TC-16A was modified to basically emulate an old 70-210 F4 set at 145mm. So the best one can do is to modify the TC-16A again to set it at the 210mm setting.

    But if the TC-16A and 500mm combo focuses OK (possibly with help with AF Fine Tune) then just leave it as is. You can always change the EXIF metadata in post-processing if you really want to.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    It's actually not that easy to change the EXIF metadata in post as I thought it would be. I am exclusively using Macs, and I only manged to find this small program named "Exif Editor" which does most of the work in a graphic interface. I'll want to change Lens Make, Lens, Lens Model, Focal Lenght, and Focal Lenght In 35mm Format. Aperture is recorded correctly. Of course this is only when I use the TC16A...

    The 500mm with the TC works though, AF and all, and I haven't figured out what the drawback is to having had to change the menu setting f9?
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,168Member
    Nothing, unless you go to use and AF-D/AF lens (not AF-S). When using those lenses with F9 changed you would have to manually change the aperture on the lens, unless you change the setting back.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • EmceeEmcee Posts: 48Member
    I was reading through this post and from what I read, a TC-16a will work with D800 in M mode and MF mode if not modified. Is that correct?

    I was trying to get some extra range for the blood moon (lunar eclipse) tonight.
    D800 | 14-24 2.8G, 28 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 58 1.4G, 85 1.4D, 24-85G VR
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