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Nikon 24-70mm Back in Stock

jail-clipart-1Stole Lens Returned

Woohoo! Happy to report that the thief that stole a couple of my lenses has been caught and spent a couple of months in jail. Finally my Nikon 24-70mm was returned and is now back in stock ready for hire.

Nikon 17-35mm f/2.8 review

Oz Lens Ambassador James Macree reviews the Nikon 17-35mm F2.8 Wide Angle Zoom

The 17-35mm f/2.8 AF-S is a high-performance wide-angle zoom for a much wider range of shooting styles, aimed at a professional shooter or serious enthusiasts.  I knew very little about this lens before I picked it up so this test is from the point of view of a true first time user.

Nikon 17-35mm Review

Straight out of the box this lens impressed me with its metal body

Nikon-AF-Nikkor-17-35mm-f2.8D-IF-ED

The Nikon 17-35mm f/2.8 certainly got some weight to it but without the bulk of the 14-24mm f/2.8, this is real nugget of a lens!

It certainly feels like it justified the extra spend over the base model Nikon wide-angle, the 16-35mm f/4 which uses a much more flimsy plastic construction. Without the show-off glass bulb on the front and a much more subtle profile, this lens doesn’t shout about its intentions, instead it slips under the radar looking more like a mid-range zoom lens.

One thing I really like about this lens is the old fashioned aperture ring at the base of the body, while this might mean little to most shooters on modern DSLR’s, I still dabble in a bit of old fashioned film photography on my ’79 Nikon FE and the ability to use this lens for that is definitely a benefit. I also like Nikon’s respect for its history by continuing to ensure that its modern professional lenses still work with any camera it has built in the last 50 odd years.

The controls of this lens are simple, well laid out and should be familiar to any Nikon shooter

The zoom ring rotates very smoothly and needs little effort to twist and yet has a nice weight to it for accuracy. Same can be said of the generous sized focus ring, something that can be important for accurate fine-tuning of focus when shooting in low-light off a tripod for instance.

The aperture ring will stay locked for most people on modern cameras.  The auto-focus can be overridden by the user while in automatic mode like most modern Nikon lenses.  Those looking for the VR switch won’t find one.

In use the lens performed flawlessly, the autofocus was fast and accurate, if a little noisy but I think we have become a little too used to the Nikon ‘Silent Wave’ focusing which is near silent on most lenses.

I’d certainly have to question your intentions if you’re worried about your camera not being silent! The f/2.8 aperture certainly came in handy, even when I wasn’t shooting wide-open, this allowed me to pull focus in very low light!

Nikon 17-35mm review

My images showed a little distortion around the edges at both ends of the zoom range

While the mid-range seemed to be pretty straight. The lens was super-sharp even at larger apertures, I noticed very little discernable difference between my images from the 14-24mm and this. They are definitely sharper than those from the 16-35mm f/4 I use as my day-to-day lens.

During the test I put this lens through its paces across several different sorts of shoots I would typically do, it came bushwalking with me, took happy snaps at a birthday, attended a car show and shot a ‘spur of the moment’ sunrise.

Each time I was thoroughly impressed at the no-fuss ‘just get it done’ style this lens brings with it, it’s size was never a problem, ergonomically it is spot on, all controls are right where you expect them to be under your fingertips, it took all of my standard 77mm filters, it didn’t flare in the sun unless I did something silly and pointed it right into the light and with a speed of f/2.8 there were no situations I had to leave a shot due to lack of light.

Lack of VR might be a point of consideration for you if you shoot from the hip often

But me at the car show, this never became an issue, when I arrived I simply set the camera to f/2.8, ISO 400 and got on with the job at hand without a problem, the fast shutter speeds did the trick without and stabilistation trickery.

I usually shoot these events fairly casually, one handed operation of the camera is important. I need the other one to sip my morning coffee and this lens didn’t let me down even in these ‘extreme’ circumstances.

Nikon 17-35mm review

I can’t really consider a situation where this lens couldn’t be used

It is excellent for landscapes and any other situation where a wide-angle is required. It’s minimum focus distance is roughly 30cm from the front of the lens which only increases its versatility and when you need to get in a little bit closer to something 35mm zoom is just enough to tighten up your frame.

I really enjoyed working with this lens, I’ve said enough about it being the quiet achiever already and this really suits me and my style.  It performed flawlessly in every situation I put it in and I rarely needed to re-take a shot to get how I wanted. That combined with that durable metal body and super-sharp image quality should earn this lens a place in just about every photographer’s kit. I am already looking at adding it to mine.

CLICK HERE to hire the Nikon 17-35mm f/2.8 lens

James MacreeAbout the Author

James Macree has been called everything from semi-professional photographer to weekend warrior, he’s been playing with cameras ever since he was a child and shoots a wide range of subjects from landscapes to motorsport. Whilst not a full time photographer, James spends most of his spare time with a DSLR in his hands. You can check out his work at LensFlarePhoto.com, where James regularly blogs and showcases his work.

 

Sigma 300mm F2.8 Review

Oz Lens Ambassador Lina Hayes reviews the Sigma 300mm F2.8 EX APO DG HSM (Canon Mount)

The Sigma 300mm f/2.8 (Canon mount) is a strong, nicely built lens that has a sleek, matte black finish.

The Sigma doesn’t look like your average zoom lens – it’s definitely one that will turn a few heads when you are out and about shooting!

One of the first and most important features of the Sigma 300mm f/2.8 is its fantastic compression and beautiful bokeh. The long focal length combined with a fast f/2.8 aperture makes for fun and creative shooting. Whether you are shooting up close or from a distance, this lens offers you a new perspective on whatever your scene or subject you’re shooting.

Take for example the image below, where I pointed the lens towards some waves crashing on the beach just after sunrise. At f/2.8, the lens creates incredible bokeh from the golden light shining onto the sea and sand. Bokehlicious!

Sigma 300mm f/2.8 test

Sigma 300mm f/2.8 is fast

The long focal length on the Sigma allows you to shoot from a distance

The long focal length on the Sigma allows you to shoot from a distance and gives you the advantage of being able to photograph subjects that would normally change their behavior or be scared away at a closer distance.

The autofocus on the Sigma 300mm f/2.8 is fast, however it can struggle to pull focus when shooting smaller moving objects (such as a bird or small animal). The lens itself is almost silent when focusing and it feels smooth as the focus adjusts itself. I was pleased with the sharpness of my images overall – if you do your job of focusing right, then your images from this lens will turn out sharp.

I did the majority of my testing with this lens on the beach. It was refreshing to have a lens that could capture scenes from far away for a change, meaning that I wouldn’t have to quickly run from one side of the beach to the other if there was something of interest that I wanted to shoot! This lens was a perfect companion for shooting waves and surfers. Having the foreground compressed also added some interest and context to my shots.

The Sigma 300mm struggles to pull focus on smaller objects

With the Sigma 300mm you can capture things without them knowing

Whilst this lens turns heads with its looks, the downside is that it can get very heavy after a period of time.

I did a lap of the beach before the muscles in my arm started to feel it! I would recommend picking a spot and using a tripod or monopod to take your shots. This lens would not necessarily be ideal for long walks or hiking due to its weight and size.

When looking through my images on Lightroom afterwards, the Sigma 300mm f/2.8 appears to show minimal distortion in its images. There is noticeable chromatic aberration and slight vignetting, which I corrected in post-processing. Apart from these minor issues, image quality is quite impressive. It’s also worth noting that Lightroom has a lens profile for this specific lens, so it’s easy to apply corrections when importing into Lightroom.

There a lot of people out there who don’t want to believe that third party lenses can be competitive and comparable to Canon and Nikon made lenses. I found the Sigma 300mm f/2.8 to be a competitive and high quality lens that would be a great option for a range of photographers, particularly those interested in shooting sports and wildlife. Try this lens out at a local sports game, car-racing event or just out and about on the beach and see what you think for yourself!

The Sigma 300mm focus works fast and quietly

The Sigma 300mm f/2.8 is great for capturing the action

 

Click Here to Rent the Sigma 300mm f/2.8

About the Author

Lina-Hayes-Bio-PhotoxLina Hayes is a professional photographer based in Sydney shooting predominately couples, families and landscapes.  Lina founded Wild at Heart Photography to document genuine and honest moments between couples and families. Lina loves to create stories with her photography by getting to know the people she works with and what matters to them most.

Check out Lina’s Landscape photography at linahayes.com or visit Wild at Heart Photography

Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 Review

Oz Lens Ambassador James Macree reviews the Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 lens

Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 review

If you shoot Landscapes or know your Nikon gear, I think it’s safe to say that you’ve probably heard of the Nikon 14-24mm lens.

For those that haven’t- this lens carries a pretty big reputation with it. Known as one of the “Holy Trinity” of Nikon glass along with the 24-70mm f/2.8G ED and the 70-200mm f/2.8 ED VR and hopefully I will be able to tell you all about each of these in time.

The reputation of the 14-24mm lens is so great, that I’ve even heard stories of devout Canon shooters getting adapters to run this on their 5DIII’s. But could it ever live up to this hype?

When you pull it out of the box it certainly makes a solid impression, it’s very weighty and larger than the images of it would suggest. This lens is much the same size as many telephoto lenses, something I wasn’t expecting the first time I tried it, being used to wide angle lenses that were of a much shorter, stubbier profile.

The metal body and weighty focus and zoom rings though give a very good feeling and the whole affair feels very special and even a little professional, particularly with that big bubble of glass up front. Initially I was very worried about bashing this on things in the field, but the built in plastic lens hood seem to do a good job of protecting it and the weight of it seems to bring with it a degree of caution to your movements as you lug it about, this ain’t no 28mm pancake lens for you to sneak about with over your shoulder.

Nikon 14-24mm review

This lens backed up its reputation the moment I pulled it out of the bag and I’d be really nit picking to fault it at much.

The Nikon 14-24mm lens is easily the sharpest I’ve used. On my Nikon D700 and shot a small aperture, this lens produces details that are as sharp as my 12MP sensor is as capable of rendering. In other words- details go down to pixel level and surely on a higher megapixel body this is even better as the details will be sharp even when blown up on a massive scale.

The sharpness does not even degrade as you near the edge of the very wide field of view, as they would on say a cheaper lens (for instance my staple lens, the Nikon 16-35mm f/4) and nor is there any real distortion to speak of, something of a miracle on something this wide. My images displayed little to no aberrations and I didn’t end up using any sort of lens correction whatsoever on the images I produced.

The Nikon 14-24mm lens can open up to f/2.8 and this will open up a world of ultra-wide angle possibilities you probably didn’t know existed, you can shoot hand held in low light and get away with it. It’s still super sharp at this aperture too, something which I found quite disconcerting, I was often left wondering why I was bothering to wind up the aperture and sit it on a tripod- however, I was soon reminded why when I got home. Hand-held cheating at f/2.8 will still result on a shorter depth of field and I managed to leave a few foregrounds looking a little soft! So don’t go breaking the rules just because you can!

One minor gripe I have had with this lens each time I use it is that it’s large surface area is quite susceptible to attracting dust and other matter that I would have to clone out later, but hey even Superman has Kryptonite right?

Nikon 14-24mm f2.8 review

The Nikon 14-24mm lens is going to be just about perfect for anything you would normally consider using an ultra wide-angle lens for…

Including landscapes, architecture, interiors and perhaps even to capture groups of people in cramped situations.

There are two things that might limit you in some circumstances;

1. The 14-24mm does not take standard screw-in filters and to my knowledge only Lee Filters produce an adapter for its filters to fit over this lens’s large bulbous from element. If this is not an option for you then this may rule out long exposure photography or even the use of a polariser.

2. The 14-24mm lens does lack VR which is going to mean it’s not a great high-speed lens for any sort of shooting whilst moving about, although its large aperture does go some way towards improving its speed- if you are looking for fast glass to shoot sport, on the street or portraits, there are probably better options.

I would not recommend this lens for travel as it is large, heavy and I imagine the glass bulb would be an expensive repair if damaged!

Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 review

I know many photographers who count this lens as the favourite one in the bag.

lens performances incredibly well and its reputation is well deserved, it really is that good. However, it’s incredible performance doesn’t come cheap and nor is it a great all-rounder, but if you know what you want and the Nikon 14-24mm fits your budget, it is definitely going to give you that wow factor that you’re looking for.

CLICK HERE to hire the Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 lens

James MacreeAbout the Author

James Macree has been called everything from semi-professional photographer to weekend warrior, he’s been playing with cameras ever since he was a child and shoots a wide range of subjects from landscapes to motorsport. Whilst not a full time photographer, James spends most of his spare time with a DSLR in his hands. You can check out his work at LensFlarePhoto.com, where James regularly blogs and showcases his work.

Canon 50mm f1.2 Review

Oz Lens Ambassador Lina Hayes reviews the Canon 50mm f1.2 lens

Canon 50mm f1.2 review

As soon as you hold this lens, you feel like a professional

Prior to hiring the Canon 50mm F/1.2, I had only heard a few select things about it from other photographers, and overall I had my doubts about what the Canon 50mm F/1.2 could really offer over the Canon 50mm F/1.4 that I already owned. As soon as you hold this lens, you feel like a professional. It feels solid, tough and the ergonomics make it feel like a high quality product. If someone gets in your way during a shoot, you could take them out with this piece of equipment!

Canon 50mm f1.2 review

Much faster and more accurate than I expected

The focusing on this lens surprised me, being much faster and more accurate than I expected – I definitely preferred its performance in this area to my Canon 50mm f/1.4. It is important to note that when using the lens at 1.4 and 1.2 in particular, you need to be very aware and careful of your focus as your depth of field is VERY shallow.

The joys of f/1.2? Magical bokeh! If you’re looking for dreamy bokeh backgrounds, then this is the lens for you! Fantastic for making your subject stand out and taking your photos to the next level. In particular, the lens really starts to shine once the light drops, allowing you to fit in a few more stops of exposure while keeping the shutter at an appropriate speed to capture what you’re after.

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It wasn’t until after I finished using this lens that I realised how quiet the Auto Focus had been the whole time – just like they say with some things, if you don’t notice it, then it must be doing it’s job right.

Looking back through my images on my computer in detail, the images had great contrast and clarity, giving them that little bit of extra ‘pop’ before I’d even started to post process them. There is some distortion with this lens, so when importing into Lightroom, I made sure I fixed that slight distortion. Overall, this lens puts out fantastic image quality.

Canon 50mm f1.2 review

If you are looking for a lens that goes a long way in terms of application, this is the one.

The Canon 50mm f/1.2 can be applied to a variety of situations –portraits, couple shoots, weddings, nature and anything else where your aim is to make your subject stand out.

It’s valuable to keep in mind that it may not be practical to use this lens at it’s widest aperture all the time, particularly with anything that moves, as you risk the shot being out of focus. In addition to this, your photos can get very soft at wider aperture and it can become tricky to get the focus sharp every time. But in low light, f/1.2 is great when trying to squeeze in a few more stops of exposure.

Canon 50mm f1.2 review

The first shoot I used this lens for was an Engagement session, and I couldn’t get enough of it. I had this lens on my camera for about 90% of the time for this shoot, finding that I could use it for all the different spots we went to and in all sorts of lighting situations. I’m always looking to bring out emotion and create depth in my photo sessions, and this lens definitely aided me in achieving that.

I also gave this lens a test run during a newborn session. It was super quiet when focusing, which was very useful in this situation when trying to keep noise to a minimal level. The versatility of the lens really stood out during the session – I was able to be up close and shoot details, and if I wanted to capture the whole scene in front of me I simply took a few steps back for a wider angle. Once again, the f/1.2 really came in handy whilst shooting indoors where there was limited light sources at times.

Canon 50mm f1.2 review

There is a lot to love with this lens – it’s fast, tough and accurate.

It goes that extra mile in terms of clarity and quality, and overall is a fantastic lens for a variety of purposes. I have no doubt that any weekend photographer will find a good use for it. Hire the 50mm f/1.2 and make your own judgment on whether it’s the right lens for you!

Click Here to hire the Canon 50mm f/1.2 Lens

Lina HayesAbout the Author

Lina Hayes is a professional photographer based in Sydney shooting predominately couples, families and landscapes.  Lina founded Wild at Heart Photography to document genuine and honest moments between couples and families. Lina loves to create stories with her photography by getting to know the people she works with and what matters to them most.

Check out Lina’s Landscape photography at linahayes.com or visit Wild at Heart Photography

happy_xmas

Pay for 4, Play for 12

I am excited about Christmas, it’s one of my favourite times of the year. 

Not only do we get to spend some time with the people that mean the most to us, we also usually get a few days R&R as well.

I don’t know about you, but over Christmas I spend a fair bit of that time out taking photos and enjoying my passion of photography.

It has been a big year for me, and one of the highlights was launching Oz Lens Rental, and I wanted to say a big thank you to you for being a part of it!

Pay for 4, Play for 12
To celebrate, I am going to give you 8 days free hire on anything in our store when you pay for 4 days, so thats 12 DAYS! for just 4 days hire….

Okay, so whats the catch?
I have worked out that if I send you your favourite lens or camera on Christmas Eve, and you get it back to me on the 5th January, you will have 12 days to play, and a lot of these are public holidays where you can enjoy yourself! The only catch is you have to pre order for these dates… that’s it!

Here’s how you redeem this offer?
Simple, all you have to do is Pre-Book your favourite gear before 5pm this Thursday the 18th December.

Choose the 29th of December as the Start Date and the 2nd of January as your return Date, this will show 4 days hire in your cart (don’t worry, I will be sending your gear on the 24th December and you don’t have to return it until the 5th January). If the gear is not available for this period (dates will be greyed out) it means someone else has beat you to it!

CLICK HERE to Book your favourite gear NOW

Cheers and Merry Christmas!

Ben

A note from Albert about our Lens Rental

If you’re thinking of renting camera gear, then definitely check out Oz Lens Rental. It was an absolute pleasure renting gear from them. Every step was very easy, from setting up an account, to returning the gear after. It’s a great way to try expensive gear, before you lay down your hard earned cash and make that big purchase. My hire gear came on time, perfectly packaged, and even came with a handful of mentos sweets. Great job Oz Lens Rentals. Give them a go. You won’t be disappointed. Highly recommended.

Albert Chetcuti

Thanks Albert for sending in your message of thanks! It makes us happy when you’re happy!

Cheers,

Ben

 

Lens Rental is the way to ‘Try Before you Buy’

Why lens rental is a great option before you buy any gear

I myself have been involved in photography for many years, and I know how expensive this hobby can become. Trying to keep up with the latest developments in Camera and Lens technology is not the cheapest excersize, and with a million and one conflicting reviews on just about every camera and lens on the market, it can be hard for you to make a decision as to what Lens to buy, or, whether upgrading to the latest camera is the best possible decision for you right now.

A lot will depend on your own shooting style, and this is one of the biggest challenges with just about any type of photography. The lens that I think is perfect for portraits, you may think is absolute rubbish, and vice versa.

Plus, with the introduction of the mirror-less cameras like the Fuji X-T1, the Sony A7r, the Panasonic Lumix and the likes, you’re left wondering if you should stick with your hefty DSLR or should you switch to a much smaller, lighter and cheaper camera setup.

Unfortunately, no one can give you ‘the answer’. You need to decide for yourself, you can however, make the decision a little easier by using a Lens Rental service such as Oz Lens Rental, you can then rent lenses and cameras to try out. Taking them through their paces and working out whether or not it is for you.

Canon Macro Lens RentalRecently, one of our customers rented the Canon 180mm Macro lens. It is a fine lens, and if you were into shooting small bugs or dangerous slimy slithering creatures, this lens could be for you. However, it’s a large investment for a lens that has limited purposes, although, it is also know to be great for portraits it’s unlikely this is the best money can buy for this purpose.

The feedback is clear, this is the best way to try out a lens before investing any $$.

I hired the 180mm Macro for the weekend – and I have to say, I was super impressed not only with the lens, but how easy the rental process was with Oz lens rental. Ordering online was easy, delivery straight to my door – the lens was carefully packed and well presented. 100% coming back to you guys for my next rental..Figured out its the best way to try a lens out before I invest serious $$ in buying one  Thanks Guys

By renting the lens first, you get to give it a test in your own time, your own environment, and then you can spend as much time as you like with your images to evaluate if the lens is worth you investing in it before making the plunge to buy it.

Lens Rental is also the perfect choice if you decide you like the lens, but cannot warrant the outlay to own it, but still want to be able to enjoy shooting with it from time to time.

If you’re keen on trying something new out Oz Lens Rental is more than happy to help! If we don’t seem to have what you’re after in stock, let us know, and we may just order it for you!

Even though we’re based in Sydney, we’re happy to ship Australia Wide.

Cheers,
Ben

Lens and Camera Rental Australia

Nikon D810 for Hire

The Nikon D810 is now in stock and ready for you to rent!

Nikon d810 RentalOz Lens Rental now has the new Nikon D810 in stock. If you looking for somewhere to hire a D810 then look no further.

The Nikon D810 is a new revolution in DSLR and is now available for you to try yourself. If your thinking about buying a D810 may you would like to try before you buy!

CLICK HERE for D810 rental Pricess

Hire the Fuji X-T1Fuji XT1 and 18-135mm Lens rental in Sydney

Here at Oz Lens Rental we love hearing from our happy customers. Jason wanted to rent the Fuji XT1 and the new Fuji 18-135mm WR Lens for the weekend. Luckily it was WR because last weekend in Sydney was WET! 

We’re chuffed Jason left us this message!

Hi Ben, wanted to say thanks for the prompt service and ease of transaction. I’ve been wanting to try out the Fuji XT-1 for a while. There’s a lot of talk about it being a real SLR replacement so I really wanted to get my hands on one in the field rather than in a store. Very interesting piece of kit. It’s actually a photographer’s camera with a stack of manual controls and NO “full auto” button.  Very interesting approach Fuji have taken here. I would never have known how they had positioned it without actually taking it out to get properly acquainted with it. Love the idea of being able to properly play with things I am looking to buy before committing. And thanks for making it easy. Good luck with the business, I’ll definitely be back and I reckon you’re on to a winner. Cheers, Jason.

Thanks Jason. When you’re happy… we’re happy!