For air shows, I typically rent a lens if I can (see my post about renting lenses in Poland and why I did not do it then). With my cropped sensor Nikon D300, 200 mm is not enough for a decent close-ups on flying aircraft, but anything above 300 mm works really well. For AirVenture this year, I got Sigma 50-500 mm. Well, not me exactly, my husband ordered it for me. I tried this lens in winter and had a greta fun photographing birds. But it was in bird blind, and most importantly- on a tripod. When I saw it and lifted it this time, I was sure I will not be able to shoot handholding with this lens. One thing to remember about shooting airplanes is that it is all about movement of the prop, so the shutter speed is almost always at 250 ar less. So I couldn’t even count on help of the shutter speed, only the vibration reduction and holding steady. But I did surprising good. As one of extreme examples, the image on today’s blog was taken at 500 mm focal length. But most of them where in the 300-400 mm range.
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