Are the lens support packages worth it?

Title really says it all....

I have the Nikon 70-200mm, the 80-400, the 200mm and a 500mm, and as I was just looking at RRS "porn", I like to see if anyone has any experience with their long lens support packages, CB-YS-QR-Pkg or CB-YS-Pkg?

Comments

  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    I use the CB-YS on the 400 / 2.8 (usually with tc-20eIII) and on the 200-400 /4 VR (series 1). It slightly improves the 400 / 2.8 which is so sharp that any improvement in support is noticeable.

    The CB-YS has totally transformed the 200-400 / 4. This lens was destined for ebay before I tried the RRS long lens support.

    I have not tried it with the 80-400 or 200-500 because I rarely use those lenses on tripods.

    If you are using the 500 / 4 you should try this. Lenses on a single support can develop high frequency vibration nodes which are too fast for VR and can degrade an image even at 1/2000th.

    ... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    When using the RRS long lens support solution, I guess the setup would be the kit "under" the 500mm, and onto a tri/mono-pod, which effectively would eliminate the vibrations?

    I can also imagine it would help on the 200mm, which is also susceptible to vibrations, in part due to the weight of the lens and the collar placed at the end of the lens...
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I got the long lens kit, and it is a big mofo. Usual RRS, i.e. high quality and very effective. It supports my 500mm, the 200mm, and the 80-400mm without any issues. Is it effective? The verdict is still out...
  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    Killerbob I'm thinking about getting that kit for my 80-400mm. Would like to know what you think about it on the 80-400mm (with and without). My lens is on a D800.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I just took a few shots of the kit with the 80-400mm. It looks very stable, and I hope it gives that little edge when having to slow down to get the shot...







    As you can see there is not much space between the battery grip and the kit, and I had to remove the RRS L-frame to fit it...

  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    edited January 2016
    I guess I do not understand how all this works. Is the lens support set up used for static subjects?

    If the subject is moving, as is almost always the case when I am using anything above 100mm, the two factors which IMO would contribute to sharpness would be the relative movement of camera to subject and how well the VR system is working. Of course the shutter speed being above 1/640 second of greater would also tend to make the crispness better.

    Thus, i need educating on what the purpose of the lens support system is actually doing.

    I use the 400/2.8, 70-200/2.8, both with and without TC-14EII, and TC-20EIII.

    Oh, yes, the one exception is when I am shooting moon shots or the sun's surface...i.e., the relative motion is very small. Maybe this is when the support system could be useful.
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    Msmoto, mod
  • picturetedpictureted Posts: 153Member
    I haven't gotten the extra support for my 200-500VR (just the regular Kirk collar), but for landscapes it might be useful.
    pictureted at flickr
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    @msmoto:

    I use the RRS long lens support system extensively on the 200-400 / 4 VR1, and the 400/2.8 VR1 with and without tc-20eIII. All on a series 3, 3 leg gitzo with no column, leveling base, and an RRS full gimbal head.

    The long lens support mounts on top of the gimbal head which I use for wildlife, mostly birds. The gimbal head was locked down with shutter speeds of 1/1000 and 1/2000 sec for these tests.

    The causation of high frequency micro vibrations around a single mount point is speculative, but the results are real and repeatable.

    On the 400/2.8 VR1 there is a slight, but noticeable improvement using the RRS long lens support, particularly with tc-20eIII, even at 1/2000. I have paid a lot for smaller improvements then I saw with this support.

    Above 1/1000 sec. VR was not helpful and occasionally degraded results.

    Above 1/1000, the long lens support with VR off gave the highest proportion of keepers.

    On the 200-400 / 4 VR1, the improvement is dramatic, moving this lens from an ebay candidate, to one I now use. I mostly use this at f4 for stagelight theater work.

    These are shot at lower shutter speeds (usually aperture priority at ISO 3200 in the 1/100 to 1/500 range) on the loose gimbal head with VR on.

    I was first clued to this by Thom Hogan (may he write long and prosper) who might have a better explanation.

    Since you use the 400/2.8 VR1 with tc-20eIII (I bought this combo based on your advice... thank you), it moght be helpful.

    It's setup is a PITA.

    Regards ... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    Thanks Harold, but I am thinking the actual mechanics of why this would improve the image is still confusing. At 1/1000 or above I usually turn off the VR.

    At image sizes of 20" x 30" I cannot imagine an improvement in sharpness on most of my images...

    I used to use a gimbal for the cars/bikes/etc., but now do it like virtually all the pros with only a monopod as the tripod setup is to cumbersome. I suspect the addition of a lens stabilizing device would add more weight than I am willing to carry around.

    Having said all this, when i have tested long lenses, I have used two tripods, one on the lens mount, one on the camera tripod mount, as the multiple ground points IMO does diminish any vibrations, IMO.
    Msmoto, mod
  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    Thanks for the info Killerbob and haroldp. Does it stop the up down bounce you see through the eye piece caused by the shutter (D800). I'm going to think about this one. I don't have a battery grip so that should help with clearance from camera L-bracket to the rail.
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    I agree about the size / weight addition. I only use this support system when I will be tripod mounted and stationary for some time, which is true of my birding at Conowingo Dam, and in theaters with the 200-400 / 4 VR1.

    On the 200-400 / 4 VR1, the problem is so pronounced that the 2 point support system is not optional for me if tripod mounted. It is actually better hand held with VR ( I think the hands dampen the vibrations).

    On the 400/2.8 / tc-20eIII, Use it on tripods. I rarely hand hold (or monopod) this lens, and am now using the 200-500 on those missions where I need reach and mobility.

    I do use the 2 point support when testing or focus fine tuning these lenses.
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • bigeaterbigeater Posts: 36Member
    There is also this awesome thing from Manfrotto...but obviously you can't change the framing once you've locked everything down.

    image
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    I have this manfrotto support and have tried it. You are correct that it is immobile when locked down.

    It also does not help the 200-400/4 because it appears that the vibration is in the lens barrel.

    I think Kirk has a much simpler tripod ring / foot that incorporates 2 pint support

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/980491-REG/kirk_nc_80_400gn_lens_collar_for_nikkor.html

    ... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    I must say that of the aforementioned solutions, the RRS is still the only one I like. It works on various lenses, it is easy to drag along, and it is adjustable.

    Tomorrow I'll know how I can get it to work with my new 200mm f/2 II...
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 1,176Member
    edited February 2016
    If you want total stability The Manfrotto 400 Head takes some beating Built like a tank weighs like a tank
    msfro
    Post edited by paulr on
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    edited February 2016
    Eventhough it is a tank, it will still display the issues of microvibrations, because there is only one point of attachment to the camera/lens. The only way this is countered is by having at least two points of solid contact to the camera/lens.
    Post edited by Killerbob on
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 732Member
    Update

    The long lens support does not work with the 200mm f/2:( I had hoped I could jiggy it so it would fit, but alas...

    Perhaps if I figured out how to turn the lens clamp so it would fit on the camera, i.e. the L-Frame.
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 1,176Member
    edited March 2016
    Finding old bits from old collections to support long lenses using a rubber mouted "Y " fitting and a Edeikrone Follow through Focus adjuster for fine tuning manual focus.

    Has no effect on directional movement.

    Stability Vibration test

    Post edited by paulr on
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
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