For kids growing history the IS is fundamental over any IQ or extra reach. For portraits or landscapes IQ is more important.
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Honestly does may sound a wee bit ridiculous but I believe it is because Canon entry level (and well all DSLR's) are manufactured in Japan, whereas Nikon crop sensor cameras a manufactured in Thailand (I know many people that got Canon over Nikon for this very reason).Agree, Made in Japan is a terrific selling tool. But it is a very important parameter for determining the value of an object on the second hand market too so people are right to be attracted to this label.
Anyone have any idea if there will be a Macro 100 2.8L II ? I am more interested in getting the new optics that come with the II than the IS. Canon seems to be slowly making II versions of the L series. Just my guessing that is.My opinion is : don't buy canon 2.8/100L Macro, this first class lens doesn't function on nikon's bodies ...
So... if compact travel gear is ur top priority, go for the 24-105+70-300 option.
If you want a balance btwn size and picture quality, try the 24-105+70-200(f/4) option
If reach is your biggest concern, the 24-105+100-400 would be the best.
If you really have to make room for sports/fast action shots, the 24-105+70-200(f/ 2.8L) is probably the best choice (though be warned... your back will start hurting soon).