Vivitar 400/5.6 Test Shot

Vivitar 400/5.6 Test Shot

I have a Vivitar 400mm f/5.6 in my stable. The 400mm is not a focal length I use a lot, but it has its place for long shots, particularly of wildlife of both four- and two-footed varieties. The shot was handheld (braced against the door) from my back door. The birds were in a tree about 80–100 feet away. They are sharp enough, but not the kind of razor-sharp image I’d like.

I’ll have to put this lens on a tripod and reshoot. I don’t know if it’s inherent in the design, the focal length, or is a reflection of poor camera technique.

4 thoughts on “Vivitar 400/5.6 Test Shot”

  1. I’m sure you remember that shutter speed=1/focal length for freehand. Otherwise solid support is a must. Unless of course you think it could be the slight tremor we have developed with age. Nah, must be the lens.

  2. Oh yeah, that rule of thumb. I use it as a guide all the time. In this case, I think the shutter speed was shorter than 1/1,250th. I also braced against the door frame, took a deep breath, half out, then s-q-u-e-e-z-e-d the trigger. I figure photography is no different than rifle fire in so many ways.

    I’ll mount the lens on a tripod, just to confirm. I also have a Konica Hexanon 400mm f/5.6 that was just cleaned and repaired to retrieve. I’ll put the Vivitar against that lens. I also expect to have a Nikkor 400mm at some time, when I can find a decent sample at a decent price. I have to research those first, but I suspect there is a ED-IF model that is the one to have. It probably costs the same as a small car. :/

  3. No, don’t squeeze, PRESS TO THE REAR. Squeezing is for Charmin, and now we both know how old we are Mr, Whipple.

    1. “Mr. Whipple!?!” 🙂 Squeeze, press, it all works for me. I say “squeeze” but I “PRESS” the trigger. 🙂 I haven’t shot low-left in a long time.

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