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Rumors => Lenses => Topic started by: Moody Blues on July 05, 2012, 12:37:40 PM

Title: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Moody Blues on July 05, 2012, 12:37:40 PM
When the 200-400 lens becomes available I will be purchasing it or the 400 2.8 prime. The delima of which of these 2 lenses would be more effective is making me mad.

The versatility of the 200-400 with the built in ext will be excellent. To think, though, that with the 1.4X and 2X ext gives you 3 incredibly useful focal lengths is equally incredible.

Owning the 70-200 f/2.8 II and using both ext's on it often, I think that the 200 to 280mm range of the 200-400 would go unused much of the time.

I have owed the 600 f/4 300 f/2.8 and the 200 f/2. Of all of those lenses, the 300 f/2.8 was my favorite.

Has anyone else given this much thought?
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: untitled10 on July 05, 2012, 01:59:07 PM
With the 2x converter you would lose any usable auto focus
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Moody Blues on July 05, 2012, 02:10:08 PM
With the 2x converter you would lose any usable auto focus

Where do you find that info? Page 79 of the 1DX manual classifies the 400 f/2.8L II with 2X Ext in Group E giving the combination Cross Type AF across the 3X7 Center focus points and Some AF across the rest of the points.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: untitled10 on July 05, 2012, 02:16:33 PM
2x converter on the 200-400 sorry ^.^
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Moody Blues on July 05, 2012, 02:19:34 PM
2x converter on the 200-400 sorry ^.^

I should have asked rather than assumed... Yes, true.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: preppyak on July 05, 2012, 02:51:01 PM
Obviously it'll be impossible to say until it gets released (or at least spec'd in full), but the advantages the 200-400 have probably don't counter the 400 2.8. The big advantage of the 200-400 is obviously convenience, you can go from 200 to 560 without changing lenses, and likely with little optical compromise. But, the 400 prime allows you to create an 800 f/5.6 with the extenders you already have.

Both are probably gonna be around the same weight, relatively speaking (8ish lbs). Both are gonna cost about the same. If you're not gonna use the <300 end, then it seems like the 400 prime is the way to go. Especially since you could have it today, rather than wait who knows how long
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: robbymack on July 05, 2012, 03:07:54 PM
you lose light over the 200, 300, and 400 primes, but the 200-400 adds versatility to a fairly broad range from 200-560 which is really interesting and certainly the cause for strife to anyone who can afford it's price tag. 
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: neuroanatomist on July 05, 2012, 03:36:27 PM
Let me rephrase the original question:  "Help me decide between buying the 2013 Porsche Carrera S and the Honda Hybrid Self-Driving Hovercar."  Given Canon's recent track record of lens delays, we may actually see that hovercar before the 200-400mm lens.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: charlesa on July 05, 2012, 03:50:14 PM
Why not go for a 400 mm f/2.8 L IS prime? Their price should come down now that version II is out, and the 200-400 will cost way more, and can one really comment on its IQ and sharpness prior to anyone ever seen or tested on in the wild? If it has the image quality of the 70-200 mm f/2.8 II then it would be a stunner of a lens, but at what price?

I was recently stuck in the same conundrum, until I found a second hand 400 for sale, pristine condition, tried it on a 1D-X (including with a 2x TC III) and was blown away.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: TrumpetPower! on July 05, 2012, 04:42:53 PM
It's really going to depend on what you're shooting and how you're shooting it.

The 200-400 is going to be more of a general-purpose jack-of-all-trades type of lens. If you need to shoot at shorter than 400, and especially if you need to rapidly change focal lengths, that's the lens.

On the other hand, f/4 is slow, and f/5.6 (with the TC) is very slow. The 400 doesn't get as slow as f/5.6 until you put on the 2x, and then it's all the way to 800 mm. If you'll be shooting primarily at the long end of the 200-400 range, especially if you'll be using that teleconverter a lot, the 400 will easily be the winner.

In other words, go with the zoom if you're mostly looking for a lens that goes up to 400 mm, and especially if you'll only be shooting in good light. Go with the prime if you're mostly looking for a lens that starts at 400, and especially if you'll sometimes be shooting in questionable light.

Chances are, since you're seriously considering the 400, that's the lens for you.

Cheers,

b&
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Bob Howland on July 05, 2012, 04:57:14 PM
I own the 300 f/2.8 and use it regularly with both TCs to shoot field sports and motorsports, typically in daylight. The focal length flexibility of the 200-400 zoom is much more important to me than the lost of an f-stop.

However, if the $13,000 rumored price for the 200-400 is true and Nikon introduces the D400 that is rumored, I may buy the Nikon 200-400, a 1.4x TC and a D400 body for a couple thousand dollars less that the Canon lens alone.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Kernuak on July 05, 2012, 06:20:00 PM
I was able to try out the 200-400 at Focus on Imaging in March and it is very handholdable. In fact it felt very much like holding my 300 f/2.8. It probably is a little heavier, but it was well balanced (at least on the 1D MkIV it was coupled to). I would say it is going to be lighter than the 400 f/2.8 MkII, although I can't say that from any experience. Then it comes down to how much using a 1.4x or 2x extender slows the AF down on the prime, compared to the built in extender on the 200-400 and cost differential (if there is one).
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Mt Spokane Photography on July 05, 2012, 06:25:13 PM
Let me rephrase the original question:  "Help me decide between buying the 2013 Porsche Carrera S and the Honda Hybrid Self-Driving Hovercar."  Given Canon's recent track record of lens delays, we may actually see that hovercar before the 200-400mm lens.

I'll probably winn the lottery first, and I don't even enter it.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: bdunbar79 on July 05, 2012, 06:30:08 PM
Why not go for a 400 mm f/2.8 L IS prime? Their price should come down now that version II is out, and the 200-400 will cost way more, and can one really comment on its IQ and sharpness prior to anyone ever seen or tested on in the wild? If it has the image quality of the 70-200 mm f/2.8 II then it would be a stunner of a lens, but at what price?

I was recently stuck in the same conundrum, until I found a second hand 400 for sale, pristine condition, tried it on a 1D-X (including with a 2x TC III) and was blown away.

I agree.  I'm not so sure I really need the flexibility of the 200-400 range.  When I shoot specifically in that range, I have 300 f/2.8 and 400 f/2.8 each on a different camera.  If I go cautious I only bring the 300 and then crop if need be.  Indoor sports my two money lenses are the 135L and 200 f/2L.  I can use the 70-200L in indoor sports because that seems more of a flexible range to me.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: KitsVancouver on July 05, 2012, 08:45:57 PM
When the 200-400 lens becomes available I will be purchasing it or the 400 2.8 prime. The delima of which of these 2 lenses would be more effective is making me mad.

The versatility of the 200-400 with the built in ext will be excellent. To think, though, that with the 1.4X and 2X ext gives you 3 incredibly useful focal lengths is equally incredible.

Owning the 70-200 f/2.8 II and using both ext's on it often, I think that the 200 to 280mm range of the 200-400 would go unused much of the time.

I have owed the 600 f/4 300 f/2.8 and the 200 f/2. Of all of those lenses, the 300 f/2.8 was my favorite.

Has anyone else given this much thought?

Ever since the 200-400 was announced, I've given this a lot of thought.  I have young kids that will be going into field sports very soon so I've been planning on a big lens for a while. 

I personally don't think I will ever shoot longer than 400mm so for me, it's the 200-400 or the 400.  Since both are going to be in the same range, price doesn't play a factor for me. 

I'm leaning towards the 200-400 because of the versatility.  If the IQ difference is too great, however, I'll get the 400mm.  If there is very little difference, then I think I can lose the light/speed and go for the 200-400. 

I guess what I don't have experience or knowledge on is the difference in background blur between the two lenses.  That could play a role so I'd love to see someone shoot the 400mm at both 2.8 and 4.0 and post the photos. 
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: DavidRiesenberg on July 05, 2012, 09:08:36 PM
Check http://www.the-digital-picture.com/ (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/) for their review of the 400. They have an image comparing background blur.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Moody Blues on July 05, 2012, 09:55:02 PM

Ever since the 200-400 was announced, I've given this a lot of thought.  I have young kids that will be going into field sports very soon so I've been planning on a big lens for a while. 

I personally don't think I will ever shoot longer than 400mm so for me, it's the 200-400 or the 400.  Since both are going to be in the same range, price doesn't play a factor for me. 

I'm leaning towards the 200-400 because of the versatility.  If the IQ difference is too great, however, I'll get the 400mm.  If there is very little difference, then I think I can lose the light/speed and go for the 200-400. 

I guess what I don't have experience or knowledge on is the difference in background blur between the two lenses.  That could play a role so I'd love to see someone shoot the 400mm at both 2.8 and 4.0 and post the photos.

You and I are in the exact same boat... I too want to get a lens for my kids sports.

I don't know if I will get back into it, but I used to shoot some for the larger sportfishing mags and I used my 300 2.8 for jumping sailfish and marlin. I will say that the 200-400 would be an absolutely killer lens for that use since a fish can be 20-120 yds from a boat in a matter of seconds. Having the 200-400 on one body and the new 24-70 on another body would be a heavenly match.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: dlleno on July 05, 2012, 10:30:51 PM
IQ of the Canon 200-400 will be interesting to see.  For kicks and giggles, go out to the-digital-picture.com and compare the Canon 400 f/2.8 at 560mm/1.4x  and the Nikon 200-400 f/4 at 560mm/1.4x.   not a fair comparison, to be sure, but the Canon sure spanks!
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: FarQinell on July 06, 2012, 07:48:53 AM
When the 200-400 lens becomes available I will be purchasing it or the 400 2.8 prime. The delima of which of these 2 lenses would be more effective is making me mad.

The versatility of the 200-400 with the built in ext will be excellent. To think, though, that with the 1.4X and 2X ext gives you 3 incredibly useful focal lengths is equally incredible.

Has anyone else given this much thought?



It all depends whether the 200-400 is usefully very sharp at 560/5.6.

From the ISO 12233 test charts we know that the new 400/2.8 is very sharp at 560 - even at f4 or half a stop beyond - with the 1.4 TC and it is  much lighter than the previous model. It is also likely to be substantially cheaper than the 200-400.

Close call! We'll know in a few weeks!

If the 560/5.6 works we may see the next models of the big whites all fitted with built in TC - with stratospheric price tags!
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Mick on July 06, 2012, 12:53:10 PM
Same problem for me. I shoot motorsport and wildlife mostly. I  had to  sell the 500f4 and 300 f2.8 and  made a nice profit, sold some other gear and pared down what i own.

I studied my meta data and looked to see what i actually shoot at. What i discovered is, i used the 500 a lot, never used a converter for extra length, shot at f4 a lot mainly due to less than impressive high ISO performance from the 7D (bought a MK4) For the 300 i never used f2.8 a great deal, shot only motorsport with it, hand held, and on occassion used a 1x4 converter. So in looking for a new lens im after.....

A lens that covers 300 to 500, will be shot at f4 a lot but on occassion steped down a little, that i can attach a full frame 1DS3 to a MK4 or 7D also for extra length. The 200-400 fits the bill perfectly.

So id think what you take pics of, study the meta data, do you need that extra stop of light especially with the new cameras ISO performance, do you need a bit more bokeh, will your eye notice any slight differance in sharpness between the lens's at sizes you print, will you use converters. Lots of questions but for what i do, the new lens fits the bill perfectly. And i wont miss shots changing my lens. I can also bet my savings it will be pin sharp with the converter.

That said......if its to expensive ill buy a new 500 and a used 300 f4.

Mick
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: GMCPhotographics on July 09, 2012, 06:58:39 AM
Does anyone know the MFD for the new 200-400 f4 L IS? I can't see a spec anywhere that states it.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: ferdi on July 09, 2012, 11:36:55 AM
Does anyone know the MFD for the new 200-400 f4 L IS? I can't see a spec anywhere that states it.

Only 2 meter according to the focus limiter options.
To compare: 100-400 180cm, 300 f/4 150cm, 400 f/2.8 I 300cm, 400 f/2.8 II 270cm, 500 f/4 II 370cm.
Look like the 200-400 will have a pretty nice MM to go with that MFD.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Moody Blues on August 03, 2012, 12:36:07 PM
Is anyone here serious about buying the 200-400 if we see a release in the next few weeks?
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: canon816 on August 03, 2012, 07:17:53 PM
Is anyone here serious about buying the 200-400 if we see a release in the next few weeks?

Absolutely.  I do a ton of shooting from a Kayak with 300mm f2.8.  I carry a second body and a TC for shorter and longer focal distances.  I would LOVE to have that versatility all in one lens and not have to swap bodies or lenses while rocking in a boat. 

I have said it before:  I would sell my 300f2.8 and 600f4 to fund this lens if the IQ is comparable at 300mm and 560mm.  The only thing that would hold me back is if the IQ doesn't deliver....
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Robic on August 12, 2012, 06:40:35 AM
Brace of Canon 200-400 f4L lenses in use at the London 2012 Olympics

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30686359@N02/7764782698/#in/photostream (http://www.flickr.com/photos/30686359@N02/7764782698/#in/photostream)
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: bdunbar79 on August 12, 2012, 10:32:46 AM
Is anyone here serious about buying the 200-400 if we see a release in the next few weeks?

Absolutely.  I do a ton of shooting from a Kayak with 300mm f2.8.  I carry a second body and a TC for shorter and longer focal distances.  I would LOVE to have that versatility all in one lens and not have to swap bodies or lenses while rocking in a boat. 

I have said it before:  I would sell my 300f2.8 and 600f4 to fund this lens if the IQ is comparable at 300mm and 560mm.  The only thing that would hold me back is if the IQ doesn't deliver....

Well when I'm shooting sports I have to bring 200, 300, and 400 primes.  Heck yes I'd buy one or two! :)
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: neuroanatomist on August 12, 2012, 10:35:03 AM
Relative to supertele lenses in the same range, the 200-400 is a nice size.  But, 560mm f/5.6 won't be enough for me on FF (although it probably would work on APS-H) - for the 1D X, I think the 600/4 II would suit me better.  I'd be unlikely to carry both a 600 and a 200-400, but I'm looking forward to a replacement 100-400 for that range.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: KitsVancouver on August 12, 2012, 12:13:47 PM
Is anyone here serious about buying the 200-400 if we see a release in the next few weeks?
I'm going to get either the 200-400 or the 400 2.8. I'm just a dad wanting to take photos so I don't think I can justify buying more than one big lens. If the IQ is as good as the 70-200 MK II then it will be enough for me to overlook the loss of speed from 2.8.

I'm worried about the QC a tad too as Canon has had many problems with new product launches lately so I might wait a year before buying.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: bdunbar79 on August 12, 2012, 12:24:06 PM
Is anyone here serious about buying the 200-400 if we see a release in the next few weeks?
I'm going to get either the 200-400 or the 400 2.8. I'm just a dad wanting to take photos so I don't think I can justify buying more than one big lens. If the IQ is as good as the 70-200 MK II then it will be enough for me to overlook the loss of speed from 2.8.

I'm worried about the QC a tad too as Canon has had many problems with new product launches lately so I might wait a year before buying.

Exactly.  I don't think I can realistically replace my 300 2.8 and 400 2.8 though.  In sports I need the AF sensor sensitivity as well as the wider than f/4 aperture.  It would be an interesting lens though, for well-lit, outdoor sports.  And, if you are a dad wanting to take photos, it would be an excellent alternative to the 100-400L zoom lens.  We'll see what the price is.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: bdunbar79 on August 12, 2012, 12:26:27 PM
When the 200-400 lens becomes available I will be purchasing it or the 400 2.8 prime. The delima of which of these 2 lenses would be more effective is making me mad.

The versatility of the 200-400 with the built in ext will be excellent. To think, though, that with the 1.4X and 2X ext gives you 3 incredibly useful focal lengths is equally incredible.

Owning the 70-200 f/2.8 II and using both ext's on it often, I think that the 200 to 280mm range of the 200-400 would go unused much of the time.

I have owed the 600 f/4 300 f/2.8 and the 200 f/2. Of all of those lenses, the 300 f/2.8 was my favorite.

Has anyone else given this much thought?

The 200-400 f/4L zoom lens cannot REPLACE the 300 2.8 and 400 2.8 primes.  For most sports shooters, f/4 isn't going to cut it and I've experienced this myself, especially night football where all you have are stadium lights. You also need access to all of the AF sensors in the 1DX and/or 1D Mark IV.  All other purposes, yes, it's a great lens and would alleviate the need to buy a 300 and 400 prime perhaps.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: charlesa on August 12, 2012, 03:16:22 PM
When the 200-400 lens becomes available I will be purchasing it or the 400 2.8 prime. The delima of which of these 2 lenses would be more effective is making me mad.

The versatility of the 200-400 with the built in ext will be excellent. To think, though, that with the 1.4X and 2X ext gives you 3 incredibly useful focal lengths is equally incredible.

Owning the 70-200 f/2.8 II and using both ext's on it often, I think that the 200 to 280mm range of the 200-400 would go unused much of the time.

I have owed the 600 f/4 300 f/2.8 and the 200 f/2. Of all of those lenses, the 300 f/2.8 was my favorite.

Has anyone else given this much thought?

The 200-400 f/4L zoom lens cannot REPLACE the 300 2.8 and 400 2.8 primes.  For most sports shooters, f/4 isn't going to cut it and I've experienced this myself, especially night football where all you have are stadium lights. You also need access to all of the AF sensors in the 1DX and/or 1D Mark IV.  All other purposes, yes, it's a great lens and would alleviate the need to buy a 300 and 400 prime perhaps.

Although in theory I agree, it provides useful versatility. I am just back from shooting a waterpolo match, and although the 400 f/2.8 on a 1DX performed like a beaut, not having the second body with the 70-200 or the fisheye made me lose quite a number of shots (second body is being serviced). Just saying, 200-400 is useful versatility wise.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: dolina on October 07, 2012, 11:44:10 AM
I'd go with 200-400 for the following reasons
- zoom range of 200-400 and 280-560
- convenience of a built-in extender
- price is reported to be lower than a 400
- if you want one super tele this would be it

I'd go with the 400 for the following reasons
- f/2.8 for when I need more light or more background/subject seperation
- weight as it is reported to be lighter than the 200-400
- physical length is more often a problem in shipping than physical width
- if you have more than one white prime this would be it

Dimension comparison between the 400, 200-400, 500, 600 and 800.

(http://asset2.cbsistatic.com/cnwk.1d/i/tim/2012/09/18/20120918_Canon_superteles_001_610x361.jpg)

400's 13.5-inch
200-400's 14.5-inch?
500's 15.1-inch

Reported to be heavier than the 400 (3850g). So does this mean the 200-400 is lighter than the 600 (3920g)?

MFD is below

(http://asset2.cbsistatic.com/cnwk.1d/i/tim/2012/09/18/20120917_Canon_200-400mm_004_620x381.jpg)
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: kirispupis on October 07, 2012, 09:40:16 PM
It depends on what you are shooting, but for most purposes the 200-400 will be much better.  The reason is the magic fairies, the production of which explains why we have not seen the lens announced yet.

It is said for wildlife photographer the fairies will fly out of the lens and enchant the wildlife to stay still and in a good pose for your photo.  Similarly for sports photos they will cause something interesting to happen exactly when the shutter fires.

Some of you may doubt this, but all of the production copies of the 200-400 I have seen clearly had fairies.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: PackLight on October 07, 2012, 11:05:24 PM
So the intent and options in this thread are;

Wait for a lens that doesn't exist yet. Debate how great it will be compared to one of Canon's premier lens.

Or buy the great 400mm F/2.8.

I think I would go with the lens that you can actually take pictures with.
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: Positron on October 07, 2012, 11:32:18 PM
What's PF (on the AF/MF switch)?
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: neuroanatomist on October 07, 2012, 11:33:29 PM
What's PF (on the AF/MF switch)?

Power focus. It's a video thing.  :P
Title: Re: Owning the Canon 200-400 f/4L Vs 400 f/2.8L II
Post by: vkiran on October 07, 2012, 11:37:55 PM
I'd go with the 400 2.8. I shoot wildlife & birds and loathe the loss of sharpness a non prime with or without extender would bring. If reach is the thing 400, 500 and 600 primes are the best.