• Andrew JK Tan

Nikon Z 6 - Adrenaline Rush photography with the Nikkor 500mm f/5.6E PF


PACU JAWI i.e. "Bull Race" is held yearly at the Tanah Datar Regency in West Sumatra. This race originated as a post rice harvest entertainment & celebration for the villagers & had been taking place for centuries. Now it is a very popular tourist event and takes place multiple times a year.

Extremely popular with photographers from all over the world , this was my 3rd visit to photography PACU JAWI. The first in 2013 , second in 2015 and this latest was on 10th Aug 2019.

Two reasons why I revisited PACU JAWI is

1. to create more action content with Nikon Z 6 (1st time with a mirrorless camera)

2. to put my Nikkor 500mm f/5.6E ED VR PF through it's paces with fast paced action

This blog would only be focused on shots captured with the Nikkor 500mm PF. All shots were captured in a single 3 hour session........read on.

ISO1250 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

Camera Combo Setup (Nikon Z 6 + Nikkor 500mm PF)

1. 12 FPS burst mode

2. RAW (12 bits to ensure 12 FPS is reached)

3. AF-C settings

- priority set to release

- blocked shot response set to 2

- Dynamic Area AF

4. Diffraction Compensation ON

5. Mechanical Shutter

6. IBIS ON

7. Nikkor 500mm VR ON

8. Camera Mode - MANUAL

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

Combo Experience

1. No issues with AF tracking

2. Weight & Handling was perfect (hand-holding for 2.5 hrs +) , overall handling wonderful

3. 1.4K+ shots with a single battery

4. EVF (electronic viewfinder) was clear , no lag , no blackout

5. Images were crisp , extremely sharp with superb clarity & details.

6. Buffer performance was sufficient for me (with my way of shooting)

Overall , I was extremely happy with the Nikon Z 6 , I did not miss my D4 or D850 at all. However what I liked most was my Nikkor 500mm PF prime telephoto which was just amazing in terms of performance especially with the qualify of images it produces. The clarity & contrast was just outstanding !

Yes , it is extremely difficult to get a hold of the Nikkor 500m PF but if you can ..... , my advice is do not hesitate , BUY IT immediately !

ISO1000 f14.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

Biting The Tail Shots

This moment is one of those key ones that should be captured.

You can see the moment though the viewfinder as the jockey puts his head down slightly. This action normally happens during the first third of the race.

ISO1250 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

The SPLITs

This dramatic action is another of those gem of a moment that should be captured. It's easy to see as the jockey starts off immediately in this position.

This is an extremely difficult position for the jockey to hang-on to especially when the bulls drift further from each other during the run , the photographer only has seconds to capture the action before the jockey gives up. Do continue shooting until the jockey releases his hold and falls into the the mud.

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

The Chaotic Splashes

One of my main goals during the session , it was NOT an easy thing to capture with luck playing the largest part on the quality of the images produced. For these chaotic images to work , as a minimum the viewer should be able to see at least a hint of the action.

ISO1000 f13.0 1/800s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f14.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f14.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

Remaining Highlights

Here are a couple more highlights captured with the Z 6/500mm PF combo.

Yes, I did do panning shots but that was done with the Nikkor 70-300mm AFP lens ...... enjoy !

ISO1250 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO640 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

ISO800 f13.0 1/1000s RAW Hand-Held

Till the next blog , happy photography.

Cheers,

Andrew

#NikonZ6 #Z6 #nikkor500mmPF #Nikkot500mmPF #PacuJawi #BullRacing