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Thread: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    I am wanting to use my Nikon TC's with my big Sigma, and wondering if anybody here has modified their Nikon TC for use on other manufacturer or non-S lenses, or modified a non-S lens mount tab so the converter will mount?

    I have read that most folks grind the offending tab off the female converter mount, and this seems like an easy solution, though it voids warranty. It also allows stacking a 2x in front of a 1.4X or 1.7x, or stacking 2 2x's, which could be cool. The other option seems to adding (grinding) an S notch to the appropriate tab Sigma male mount for a cleaner final solution. Of course here a mistake is far more costly and requires a very steady hand, and why I suspect it isn't done as much.

    Anybody here done either and care to share results?

    And yes, my Dremel tool is waiting...
    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Well, I went ahead and decided to modify the 1.4x to start. One, I figured it's better to screw up a $300 converter than it is a $3000 lens. Two, I wanted to do the 1.4x anyway so I could stack the 2x in front of it.

    Conclusion: Simple answer is don't bother. Longer answer is that on the upside the process is easy and only takes a few minutes assuming you have a good screwdriver for the converter mount screws and a Dremel tool to remove the extra nub. The converter now mounts on my Sigma 120-300/2.8, but the AF hunts at the micro level and never locks on so it's all but useless for AF. Even then, in MF mode the results optically were less than impressive as well. You get to a sort of okay 420, but nothing near good enough to even bother modifying the 2x for. Finally, stacking the 1.4x+2x behind my 70-200, the results were again marginal at best -- IOW you get a marginally usable 540/8 that looks a bit smeary. So it appears I should probably try the Sigma dedicated converters for my Sigma lens. Or spring for a couple big Nikkors
    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Jack,

    From what I recall, I posted thoughts regarding using Nikon Af converters on Sigma lenses both recently and some time ago. In my recent post I stated I knew personally a photographer who grinded down the nibs on his Nikon AF-S teleconverters and tried them out on the 120-300 f2.8 lens, which was the pre OS model. They did work (I too shot with his lens and the NIkon converters). Apparently since Sigma is always using reverse engineering and doesn't pay royalties to Nikon and Tamron does, the abaility to Af with Nikon converters on Sigma lenses depends greatly on both the model and age of the lens. Unlike Nikon lenses, even various batches of the identical lens from Sigma often change. Not really different than when a Metz SCA flash works with one model of Nikon camera, but won't with successive generations.

    As far as optical quality, the Nikon converters had a slight edge compared to the Sigma's. This was especially true of using the new Nikon 2x, since it is head and shoulders above Sigma's own (2x). With the newer OS lens, all that often goes out the window.

    Lastly I had a very old post I believe on Getdpi, where I posted that often Nikon converters on some Sigma lenses simply hunt and never lock focus. Unfortunately it sounds like you already observed this.

    Sigma's 1.4x with many of their top lenses is "good" (sometimes a bit better), but their 2x is fair to average at best and often times not good at all and it's clearly no match for Nikon's 2x.

    P.S. Jack, I wish I had caught (read) your original post in here time, to suggest that maybe you'd want to rethink this. Anyhow, no real harm done to the converter or even it's resale, unless you also etched Guy's portrait in the rear glass of the converter with a fine diamond tip in your dremel?

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 2nd October 2012 at 17:43.

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Quote Originally Posted by D&A View Post
    Anyhow, no real harm done to the converter or even it's resale, unless you also etched Guy's portrait in the rear glass of the converter with a fine diamond tip in your dremel?
    No, no etching on the elements -- While I'm not the smartest guy in the room, I was at least smart enough to remove the mount flange from the converter BEFORE grinding on it
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Administrator, Instructor Guy Mancuso's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Get the Sigma 1.4 so I can use it on my 150 if I ever get the darn thing. Car repair costs today was just short of a heart attack. Killed my lens budget. Lol
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    Get the Sigma 1.4 so I can use it on my 150 if I ever get the darn thing. Car repair costs today was just short of a heart attack. Killed my lens budget. Lol
    Car repairs...tell me about it! If it only killed your Sigma 150 lens budget, consider yourself lucky. My last few (car repairs), killed the budget for camera bodies, lenses and a lot more and I sense I haven't seen the last of it. I know when I come back to this life a 2nd time around, I'm going to be a auto mechanic!

    Dave (D&A)
    Last edited by D&A; 2nd October 2012 at 21:06.

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Note to Jack - the D800 comes with one heck of a built in teleconverter that has no image quality degradation other than resolution. (which let's face it, you've got bucket loads of anyway).

    Here's the trick - Shooting Menu -> Image Area -> Choose Image Area -> DX

    Voila. 16MP of super sharp undistorted pixels not affected by f-stop brightness dropoff etc etc. Just sayin' ...
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

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    Likes 2 Member(s) liked this post

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    Subscriber & Workshop Member GrahamWelland's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    You've already spent the $3000 to get the D800 in the first place so nett cost is zero

    Of course if Nikon ever come out with a 24mp or 36mp DX camera then that might be the alternative. I actually used this approach back in my "shooting eagles with a 600VR" days and just bought a D300s as my 'teleconverter'. Lot's of pixels on target for an 'affordable' price and better quality than any of the available teleconverters could achieve.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Senior Subscriber Member Steen's Avatar
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    Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?


    Or how about 10 million tiny pixels (Nikon V1) using only the center part of the optical image circle ?

    Huge Nikon 1 V1 price drop | Nikon Rumors

    Imagine an affordable 300mm f/4 with a 2.7x crop factor without reduced aperture brightness, providing an effective angle of view of an 810mm tele lens.

    I guess it depends on what you are going to use it for.

    Terry had the V1 and may still have it. And Uwe as well.

    They may know how it works on long F-mount lenses with the FT-1 adapter ?

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    Super Duper
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrahamWelland View Post
    You've already spent the $3000 to get the D800 in the first place so nett cost is zero

    Of course if Nikon ever come out with a 24mp or 36mp DX camera then that might be the alternative. I actually used this approach back in my "shooting eagles with a 600VR" days and just bought a D300s as my 'teleconverter'. Lot's of pixels on target for an 'affordable' price and better quality than any of the available teleconverters could achieve.
    Well since Jack mentioned something about stacking teleconverters with his 120-300 f2.8, I say first go for Graham's idea of built in teleconverter by using a APS sensor DSLR like the D300, but then on top of this use a real 1.4x teleconverter on the lens. That should eliminate the idea of "stacking", and also allow you to capture the beak of a small bird 1/4 mile away. Substitute a 600 f4 with the same set-up, and one can determine if surface of moon is really made of green cheese LOL!

    Dave (D&A)

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    I've done the mod on a tc-20e iii and it worked like a charm. It was done mainly to use on older manual focus lenses, and performed quite well on my 200mm f2 and an old 600mm f4.

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    If you need a 35mm pce, try it on your 24 pce
    just saying it is worth a try and it my main motivation.
    At least there is NO issue with AF hunting.
    -bob

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    Subscriber Member tashley's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    I bought mine in the UK 'ready modified' from my dealer, who charges a small amount to do it in-house. I thought it might be useful to take it along when travelling to extend the range of my Zeiss Makro Planar 100mm but the results are a little ho-hum... I haven't tried it on anything else other than the 70-200, on which it seems pretty fair...

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Quote Originally Posted by tashley View Post
    I bought mine in the UK 'ready modified' from my dealer, who charges a small amount to do it in-house. I thought it might be useful to take it along when travelling to extend the range of my Zeiss Makro Planar 100mm but the results are a little ho-hum... I haven't tried it on anything else other than the 70-200, on which it seems pretty fair...
    Yes, the Nikon 1.4x converter is pretty OK on the current 70-200 f2.8 Nikon, but really shines on certain Nikon single focal length lenses, where its quite simply superb, all things considered.

    Dave (D&A)

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    FWIW, I just tried it on my 85PC and it's STELLAR! Gives you a 120 PC that focuses to about 1/2 life size. THis alone may make it worth modifying the 2x as well..
    Jack
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    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    FWIW, I just tried it on my 85PC and it's STELLAR! Gives you a 120 PC that focuses to about 1/2 life size. THis alone may make it worth modifying the 2x as well..
    It should also be pretty good on the 24 pce I think.
    -bob

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Can you guys enlighten me how to do this conversion?
    A couple of pics would be nice what I have to shave off?
    Cheers,
    Willem.

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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?


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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Nikon Teleconverter Notch Mod?

    Hi Rethmeier,

    Most important thing is to make sure you have a good-fitting screwdriver with a large enough handle to get the screws loose -- that's the most difficult part of the procedure. If you lift the mount off carefully, you will not foul the washer stack underneath. Finally, on my conversion, the grinding left a small burr that took some extra care to remove, so just be aware of that too!
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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