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Artborghi’s Reportage on La Dolce Vita: a Tour in Rome with D800 and 16-35mm f/4 for Easter 2013

By Artborghi @artborghi

What better occasion than a trip to Rome to test the 16-35mm f/4G, or was it the other way round ? Click on each post picture to open a flickr.com artborghi set either on Rome or on Ancient Roman locations or Vatican City. For technical specifications and tricks, just read further below
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The city of Rome perfectly fits in 16 mm: click here for more pictures on the “Dolce Vita” in Rome

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The huge floor mosaics of Ostia Antica need wide angles to be captured: click here for more pictures on Roman ruins

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Saint Peter is the biggest church in the word: a perfect playground for wide zooms. Click here for more pictures shot in the Vatican City of the new Pope Francesco

- None of these pictures is straight out of the camera. Every shot went through lens correction to adjust the barrel distortion at 16mm. Above 20 mm the corrections are minimal. Gladly the lens correction can be set to automatic in Light Room or equivalent software.

- Despite the high Nikkor 16-35mm quality, with a wide angle often skies are bright and grounds are dark. Go for D-lighting auto correction with JPG otherwise adjust NEF format in Light Room or equivalent: 1 to 2 steps up for shadows, the opposite for lights, more blacks, less whites. A bit of contrast enhancement will not damage the picture.

- I mostly used the 35mm end: filling up pictures with a 16 mm is not easy, unless you lean down to have interesting fields / terrain textures. People should stay away unless you like long skinny figures.

- Without the D800 artificial horizon (tilt sensor) most of my wide angle pictures would have been far from straight.

- Flares? Only few by night lights. No flare fiest like reported with the 14-24 mm (even from back lights!).

- Polarizer? Possible to mount (in contrast to the 14-24mm) and really necessary for cloudy skies: I am glad the same polarizer fits also my 70-200 mm

- Trevi fountain water-drops on the lens? Remove them immediately, they cause huge spots, much more visible than on a 50 mm. Keep wide lens (more) clean (than usual).

- The 16-35 mm stabilizer (VR) is really good: I could catch flowing waters and sharp stones from Trevi fountains at evening with f/4 and 1/8 secs with a hand held D800! Yes, I am proud of it.

- The hood came to be very useful to avoid bumping the lens onto unfriendly surfaces: it’s not easy to quantify distances through a 16 mm

Last but not least, walking in Rome all day long with a bag filled with D800, 70-200 mm and 50 mm lenses made the weight of the 16-35 mm insignificant.

If you read all down until here, click here to watch the whole picture collections on Rome on our artborghi channel on flickr.com.


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