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View Poll Results: Am I the only photogr in the world shooting an infrared DSLR w/super-telephoto lenses

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  • Yes. So far no one else is doing it.

    9 90.00%
  • No. I know of other photographers shooting IR with longer than 200mm

    1 10.00%
  • No. I know of other photographers shooting IR with longer than 400mm

    0 0%
  • No. I know of other photographers shooting IR with longer than 600mm

    0 0%
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Thread: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

  1. #1
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    Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    I am brand new to this forum and after reading some of the threads I am convinced that I can consider this group an authority on the topic of experimental and unusual styles of artistic expression.

    My question is:
    Do any of you know of any photographer (other than myself) that shoots the majority of his/her work in the infrared spectrum with lenses longer than 300mm?

    As far as I know I am the only one. For years I have seen wildlife photographers dabble with an extra body that they have converted but even when experimenting they very rarely venture toward the 100-200mm range and then retreat back to wide angle lenses or back to the visual spectrum.

    I can understand why. It isn't easy. So far it seems that I am the only photographer in the world doing it. Does anyone disagree?

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    maybe guys for the tv documentories? im guessing the focus shift issues become more pronouced at the longer focal lengths?

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Since this is the Medium Format Systems and Digital Backs forum, you mean to say you're using an IR medium format system or IRcapable MFDB with longer focal lengths?

    Phase Achromatic or Leaf full spectrum with filters?

    There are quite a few with converted IR cameras, but not too many I know of with the coveted Phase Achromatic. I enjoyed my brief testing of it on a Cambo WRS, tethered with the Surface Pro.

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Quote Originally Posted by pingu666 View Post
    maybe guys for the tv documentories? im guessing the focus shift issues become more pronouced at the longer focal lengths?
    I appreciate your response. I have am actually seeing a lot more IR HD video from documentarians lately. I think it is great but what I do looks and feels quite different. I should have mentioned the "DSLR" (I use Nikon full frame cameras) aspect in my question because video is relatively easy because the capture doesn't include the interruption by the mirror ending the video when it goes up.

    Please remember my question is not meant to be a competition of who has to work harder to capture the image. I am only asking if any of you know anyone else using IR converted DSLRs to capture wildlife with focal lengths 300mm to 1200mm. I am also aware that you guys are medium format shooters but, like I said, you are photographers that think outside the box and are willing to do something difficult in an effort to achieve a superior result. That is why I am humbly asking for your feedback.

    My gallery has a few examples if you are interested.

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Richard Mosse's 'The Enclave' was shot on 8x10" IR film, in the Congo. It's not wildlife, but certainly is Art Photography, shot on a 300mm lens, I'd imagine.

    http://aperture.org/shop/the-enclave...rd-mosse-books

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Quote Originally Posted by In a Different Light View Post
    I appreciate your response. I have am actually seeing a lot more IR HD video from documentarians lately. I think it is great but what I do looks and feels quite different. I should have mentioned the "DSLR" (I use Nikon full frame cameras) aspect in my question because video is relatively easy because the capture doesn't include the interruption by the mirror ending the video when it goes up.
    Wrong forum and format?

    Use live view, ditch Nikon and switch to Sony to remove any difficulties associated with shooting in IR. There are no difficulties.

    I am shooting in Ultraviolet (think 7 stops less than visible) and even with telephoto lenses.

    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    ditch Nikon and switch to Sony to remove any difficulties associated with shooting in IR.
    Just curious - what are the difficulties with Nikon and why is Sony better?
    Is this a mirror/no-mirror thing?

    Ray

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Live view /EVF and real metering. Two reasons.

    It appears that Nikon's live view implementation has caught up to yesteryear's Sony's. Still, why strap along a viewer to the LCD while an EVF can be used which actually works better for the invisible spectrum (UV and IR) than for the visible.
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    No experience with Nikon however I do with Canon. I had a 1DsII converted to capture 665nm infrared a couple years ago and thought "okay"; keeping the camera for about a year and selling it. Then along came Sony. My first Sony was a NEX-7 converted to 665nm IR . The great thing about shooting IR with a mirrorless camera is what you see is what the sensor sees so there's no surprises (you must be capturing with a custom white balance in camera). I've since sold the NEX-7 after replacing it with a 7r. I first had the 7r converted to capture 665nm and using various filters on the lenses also captured 720 and 830, all along seeing exactly what the sensor was seeing at the time of capture.

    I've since had the 7r re-converted to capture full spectrum and using various filters I'm able to capture 590, 720 and 830 as well as full color and full spectrum. I've had no problems using the EVF or the LCD and actually prefer the EVF. The biggest bonus to using a mirrorless camera for IR is (again) the fact that you see what the sensor sees and can help plan your shot.

    I've done limited wildlife with the 7r using a 70-200 and will be using a 150-500 later. I'll admit that most wildlife shots I've taken are all in the 830nm range. I've also begun to rely more and more on my Phase DF/IQ160 and 240LS with 2x extender for my more serious wildlife capture in Jackson Hole WY.

    Somewhat hesitant as to the nature of the original question. Is the OP capturing in medium format with a back converted to IR or is he capturing in 35mm? In re-reading #4 it's clearer now that he capture in 35mm and is seeking general information. Based on capturing with both a 1DsII DSLR and the 7r mirrorless I'd say hands down I prefer the mirrorless.
    Don Libby
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Dear Don,

    I just got back from Yellowstone where I photographed only in IR with my Nikon D800s which are all converted to 720nm.

    The main reason I don't shoot mirrorless is because I can't afford to miss the moment due to lag time. Are the Sony cameras actually fast enough that there is no delay? With Nikon there is about a quarter of a second delay.

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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    I recently returned from shooting gorillas and elephants at the San Diego Wildlife Park. I'll admit not true "wildlife" and not quite like shooting elk, buffalo and moose in Jackson Hole however it allowed me to see the potential. I used the Sony A7r converted to capture full spectrum and used various filters to capture a combination of color and black & white using a FE70-200. I normally don't use "burst" as I also normally shoot medium format however I did try it here. All in all I'm very please with the number of keepers from this experiment. I also used a combination of auto-focus and manual. In the end it's about how well you know the equipment being used and not being afraid to step outside the box. I haven't done anything with a DSLR in years but feel based on previous experience the 7r is just as fast and capable as what the 1dsII and III were.

    don
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Hi again Don,

    Since you actually own and have used the Sony A7r I am wondering if I could pester you further on the question of lag time. If I only want to capture one image of a wild animal in any situation on my D800 (converted to IR) one way to make sure that I have absolute focus is to already be in Live View (Still Frame mode-not video) and then shoot. I will only get one image because the mirror goes up and the camera won't respond to anything until the image processes in about 10-15 secs. This is an excruciatingly long time to wait in the heat of the moment during a fight etc. While in Yellowstone I did this at the first clash between fighting Bison during the rut. When the camera became available for the second frame the whole fight had happened already and I was left with one frame only.

    Furthermore there is a lag time of around 1/4sec when viewing through Live View as opposed to the optical viewfinder so I find that the moment of truth has already passed so the trick in the early days was to shoot in advance of what you believed was "going to be" the moment of truth. You can imagine how often I got it wrong.

    So here is my question: Is the lag time of the electronic viewfinder on the A7r something to compensate for or is it faster than the Nikon's Live View?

    On a separate note: If I use the Nikon-Sony adapter for my 600mm F4 VR lens will any of the VR or AF functions transfer?

  13. #13
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Whatever the lag time is on the 7r is way less than several seconds. I have the review function don to the briefest of time and would eliminate it all together if I could. That said, I really haven't encountered a huge amount of lag from the time I close the shutter until I close it again. I remember shooting burst of 3 and remember them going off damn near instantly. Once again I have no experience with anything Nikon.

    Regarding using any adaptor for your Nikon glass - I simply don't have an answer I can offer from direct experience.

    I'd suggest trying this out at a local dealer or renting in order to see if it'll work for you.

    Don
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    Re: Super-telephotos and Infrared wildlife photography

    Quote Originally Posted by In a Different Light View Post
    So here is my question: Is the lag time of the electronic viewfinder on the A7r something to compensate for or is it faster than the Nikon's Live View?

    On a separate note: If I use the Nikon-Sony adapter for my 600mm F4 VR lens will any of the VR or AF functions transfer?
    Waay faster than Nikon's "liveview" (which is not all that live). Your best bet is with Canon (IS will work with a proper adapter) as Nikon's VR works only with Nikons, also no AF.

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