I’ve had Nikon AI 400mm f/3.5 for quite long time. It’s a good lens but I don’t use it quite often as it’s a manual focus lens and it’s difficult for me to focus manually . I’ve read that TC-16A teleconverter can be used to make a manual focus become a semi auto focus, i.e. you focus manually around the object and then when you press the AF button or shutter button halfway, the teleconverter will do auto focus to the object. The problem is, this teleconverter is not compatible with almost all Nikon digital camera, except the D2 series (D2H/s & D2X/s). The D2H & D2HS only have 4MP resolution, so I’m not interested. The D2X & D2XS are 12MP cameras but the second hand price was still high, even after D4 came out. But lucky me, last week I found one with a quite good price and no one bid it except myself 😀
So now I can use my 400mm lens as 640mm f/5.6 semi auto focus lens with my new D2X :D. It works quite good, but I think I need to do more practise as I have to focus manually first and then do the auto focus. Here are some of the test pictures:
PS: Actually TC-16A can be modified to be used with other camera but I’m not that handy to modify things. You can read how to do it in this website. You can also found in ebay the modified TC-16A, but I’m not confident to order through ebay. If you’re living in Switzerland and can do that modification, please contact me, I’m interested to use your service 😀
The modified TC-16A version would be even better as I can use it in my D700 or D800. The ISO of D2X is only up to ISO 800 and sometimes it’s not enough when the light is not that good.
UPDATE: Having a gimbal head is really helpful for handling big glass. I decided to get Wimberley Sidekick as it’s not that expensive as the full Wimberley head and at the moment I don’t have 500mm or 600mm yet (but who knows :D). The seagull pictures above were taken after I bought the Sidekick.