A lotus flower in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. I had to shoot this across the pond, and it was a good thing I brought along a teleconverter, the Nikkor TC-17E II, it gives an additional reach of 1.7x. Teleconverters are mounted in between your lens and body, and they are good when you need a cheaper solution for gaining a longer reach. For Nikon, there are currently 3 kinds of teleconverters, TC-14, TC-17, and TC-20 – giving 1.4x, 1.7x and 2.0x respectively. Be aware that the maximum aperture also decreases accordingly, and also degrades the sharpness of the lens wide open. Example: a 2.8 lens becomes a 4 with a TC-14. With the shot below, my 105mm 2.8 becomes an effective 180mm 4.8 (105mm x 1.7). For the TC-17, it’s good enough wide open, but I usually stop it down a bit. The TC-14 is the sharpest of the 3 teleconverters but I chose the TC-17 because it gives me the much added reach without compromising much on the performance of the lens. My experience also tells me that teleconverter performs better on prime lenses than on zoom lenses. I seldom mount my teleconverter to the Nikkor AFS 70-200mm 2.8 VRII unless it’s really needed, but on a Nikkor AFS 200mm 2 VR, this is where exactly it’s designed for, making it a 340mm 3.4 lens! I don’t even hesitate shooting it wide open. It’s like having two lenses in one, cool isn’t it?
Note: A caveat is teleconverters are not compatible to all lenses, and it can damage your lens, so please check first if they are compatible before trying to mount them together.
Photographer’s note: F/7.1, 1/160, ISO 800, Nikon D3, Nikkor AFS 105mm 2.8 VR, Nikkor TC-17E II
Feel free to interact with my blog articles, either by adding a comment below this article, or drop me an email. Thanks for reading! Keep clickin’ -Kindest, Dave