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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Whiskeyman's Avatar

    D500 Autofocus Performance

    D500 Autofocus Performance
    I spent most of yesterday at a water sking tournament in NW Florida, taking photos at the invitation of a friend who skis with the hosting organization.

    I used both my D500 and D750, and the Nikon 70-200mm E FL AF-S, Nikon 300mm AF-S G VR II and Nikon 500mm AF-S G VR lenses.

    Now I'm busy sorting out the 2300, or so, images from the outing.

    Back to the crux of this post. It was the first opportunity I've had to really test the autofocus performance of these cameras, and the D500 is clearly the better camera, by far. I had both cameras set so that the image had to be in-focus for the shutter to operate, and other than ISO, the other pertinent camera settings were the same between the two cameras. I switched camera/lens combinations, and often used both cameras on the same ski run, one being tripod mounted and the other hand held to enable a quick switch from one to the other.

    Well, the D500 was almost always able to keep up with the very dynamic (motion) subject, while the D750 struggled. In fact, the D500 most often tracked the subject long enough to fill the camera's buffer, while the D750 did so seldomly.

    I'm not saying that the D750 was bad, mind you, but that the D500 was so much better!

    It's performance was strong enough to make me consider purchasing another D500 body. I am not ready to do it immediately, but will seriously consider it instead of my plan to next purchase a D850. Then again, I might need to rent and test a D850 before I make the decision. It does take the thought of purchasing another D750 out of the equation.
    D500 Autofocus Performance-ski-watch-panorama-share-1.jpg

    All-in-all, I am even more impressed with this camera that I have been before.

    WM


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    Last edited by Whiskeyman; 07-03-2020 at 03:21 AM.
    Thanks/Like canuck257, hark, Marilynne, Hobbit, nickt, Woodyg3 Thanks/liked this post
     
    “If you want to be a better photographer, stand in front of more interesting stuff.” - Jim Richardson



  2. #2
    Senior Member

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Ugh, why did I read this?
    Been thinking hard about a d500 all month and trying to convince myself I don't need it. The $100 instant rebate ends tonight (6/28) at midnight. Awhile back a guy in the local facebook group posted pictures of a little brown bat in flight. Tack sharp. I asked him how he managed to get a bat in flight and he said he loves his d500 and the autofocus continues to impress him. He certainly missed a few but its hard to even find a bat in the viewfinder.
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    I must have a really good camera.

  3. #3
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Quote Originally Posted by nickt View Post
    Ugh, why did I read this?
    Been thinking hard about a d500 all month and trying to convince myself I don't need it. The $100 instant rebate ends tonight (6/28) at midnight. Awhile back a guy in the local facebook group posted pictures of a little brown bat in flight. Tack sharp. I asked him how he managed to get a bat in flight and he said he loves his d500 and the autofocus continues to impress him. He certainly missed a few but its hard to even find a bat in the viewfinder.
    Just a guess on my part, but with all those 153 AF points, the body should be able to hone in on the subject better than many other bodies. One problem I'm having with my D7200 is when I focus on a bird's face and the face is small. Sometimes the focus point extends to either side and picks up something in the background or foreground throwing the bird's face into soft focus.
    Thanks/Like nickt, Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Cindy
    Flickr
    and My 2020 Thread

    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Nero's Avatar

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    The D500 was designed for fast-action. I'd say that it's probably still better at it than most cameras that have been made since.
    Thanks/Like nickt, Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Nikon Z6 + FTZ Adapter
    Nikon 50mm F1.8 S
    Tamron 15-30mm f/2.8
    Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Macro



  5. #5
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    @nickt I've been wondering about the price. When looking at the camel web site, Amazon has had it listed at this price since June 2019.

    https://camelcamelcamel.com/product/B01A7Q0J3Y

    Over the past few days, even B&H listed the price as ending as of today, yet when I looked today, that disclaimer was removed. However, the price is still the same as it's been. So I'm not sure if it will go back up or not. Guess we'll find out this coming week.
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Cindy
    Flickr
    and My 2020 Thread

    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  6. #6
    Senior Member

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Quote Originally Posted by hark View Post
    @nickt I've been wondering about the price. When looking at the camel web site, Amazon has had it listed at this price since June 2019.

    https://camelcamelcamel.com/product/B01A7Q0J3Y

    Over the past few days, even B&H listed the price as ending as of today, yet when I looked today, that disclaimer was removed. However, the price is still the same as it's been. So I'm not sure if it will go back up or not. Guess we'll find out this coming week.
    Thanks, interesting. Good catch checking Camel to see the price history. B&H had the end date and time either last night or this morning, I forget. I checked it again when I saw Whiskeyman's post, and as you saw too, the end date was gone. Allen's still has the end date but they are a smaller shop and might not have the web team like b&h. Adorama has the end date today. The d500 wasn't even showing up on my Adorama search earlier but now its there available for backorder.
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    I must have a really good camera.

  7. #7
    Senior Member

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Quote Originally Posted by Whiskeyman View Post
    In fact, the D500 most often tracked the subject long enough to fill the camera's buffer.
    I have to assume you were only using an SD card, right? With a XQD card I run into the 200 frame shutter limit long before I fill the buffer (I can go 300+ images before I get buffer lag on the D500).
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Jake
    (formerly backdoorhippie)

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Danno's Avatar

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    That is what the D500 was designed to do. If I did that kind of photography I would be hard pressed not to have a D500. I have just seen too many amazing captures with the camera. I can see where you mght want two.

    I am pleased with my Z6 for what I like to shoot.
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Dan~~Kentucky

    "The natural man must know in order to believe; The spiritual man must believe in order to know. " ~ Aiden Wilson Tozer ~ "The Dwelling Place of God"

    Nikon Z 6 Nikon D7200 w/Grip, Nikon D700 w/Grip, AF-S Nikkor 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR, Nikon 14-24 f/2.8, Nikkor 50mm/1.8G, Tamron 28-75, Tamron 70-200 F/2.8
    Yongnuo Speedlight YN568EX, Vanguard ALTA Pro 264AB Tripod, Vanguard
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    https://www.dailywalkinthelight.com

  9. #9
    Staff
    Super Mod
    hark's Avatar

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Quote Originally Posted by nickt View Post
    Thanks, interesting. Good catch checking Camel to see the price history. B&H had the end date and time either last night or this morning, I forget. I checked it again when I saw Whiskeyman's post, and as you saw too, the end date was gone. Allen's still has the end date but they are a smaller shop and might not have the web team like b&h. Adorama has the end date today. The d500 wasn't even showing up on my Adorama search earlier but now its there available for backorder.
    Interesting that Allen's doesn't offer it with the $100 savings, but B&H, Adorama, and Amazon all do.
    Thanks/Like Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    Cindy
    Flickr
    and My 2020 Thread

    Where the Spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art
    -- Leonardo da Vinci



  10. #10
    Senior Member

    Re: D500 Autofocus Performance

    Quote Originally Posted by hark View Post
    Interesting that Allen's doesn't offer it with the $100 savings, but B&H, Adorama, and Amazon all do.
    Yeh, I saw that. NikonUSA site shows it 'on sale' at the lower price. Maybe Allen's not paying attention. $120 sales tax if I buy it in NY. Its not a done deal, I'm still working the want vs need, lol.
    I saw something I really like though. I'm fully on board with bbf now. I use it for everything. Almost always single point though, so I thought I'd have to get quick with changing area modes to get good use from that focus system. But I read that I can also program the joystick button for bbf and use a different area mode for that button. So I would be able to instantly choose single point or 153 points depending on which bb I use.
    Thanks/Like hark, Whiskeyman Thanks/liked this post
     
    I must have a really good camera.





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