January 29, 2015, 07:29:43 AM

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Messages - AlanF

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16
Lenses / Re: Canon 100-400II: actual mm's
« on: January 20, 2015, 02:55:57 PM »
Mario
I am also a chemist, and came up with a figure of 380mm at about 20m by comparing with the 300mm/2.8 plus 1.4 or 2xTCs, assuming they are correct. Remember also that there is a slight pincushion at 400mm.

17
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens Review
« on: January 20, 2015, 02:49:28 PM »
That is what I call scientific testing! Note they use DxO analyser. SLRgear was my first go-to site and, as you say, still the most reliable.

18
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens Review
« on: January 20, 2015, 11:53:41 AM »
SLRGear just posted their review.

http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php?product=1747

Thanks for the heads up. It is very interesting that the actual tests of the sharpness differ from what you would expect from Canon's MTF charts: both the 400/2.8 II and the 300/2.8 II are sharper in the "blur tests". On the other hand, ePhotozine has MTF charts with the 400mm DO much sharper than the 300mm f/2.8 II.

19
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens Review
« on: January 19, 2015, 09:49:45 AM »
I really don't understand the whole concept of 400/4 DO II and why anyone would actualy buy it. It's probably my fault.

And now...

400/4 DO IS II - 2100g
300/2.8L IS II - 2350g
400/2.8L IS II - 3850g

300/2.8 has improved. A LOT. It's lighter, (all II gen lenses got lighter) it's even better optically than before and also has a shorter minimum focusing distance (2m from previous 2.5m). THAT is improvement.
Meanwhile 400/4 DO got heavier. The previous 600g difference is now only 250g. Minimum focusing distance is 3.3m. Yes, it got better, much better optically. But we already had superb lenses. What we don't have is light lenses. The primary goal of DO should be to reduce weight and size. Image quality only comes second, no matter how strange that could sound to you. The first generation wasn't sold for it's image quality either.
Or maybe is it cheap? It's not.

In my opinion, the 400 DO beeing 2100g is a big FAIL. It does not stand up to the 300/2.8 (+1.4X) at all.
Hi,
    Why big fail?? EF 400mm F4 DO IS II is still smaller, lighter and sharper than EF 300mm F2.8L IS II... basically, the EF 400mm F4 DO IS II is for those who need the smallest, lightest and sharpest 400mm lens out there.

   Have a nice day.

I agree with weixing and very much disagree with riker.  The new 400 DO lens may be only 250g lighter than the 300 II but if 250g isn't much for you, the weight difference between the older 400 DO and the new is only 160 g.
For me the size is actually more important than the weight (which is light enough for me). The new 400 DO is really small compared to most L Tele Primes and thats whats so interesting about this lens.

The spoiler is the 100-400 "for those who need the smallest, lightest and sharpest 400mm lens". It is just so much smaller and lighter - you have to use the big lens hood on the 400 DO or the 300mm/2.8 to protect the front lens, and it adds size and weight just where you don't want it. The 100-400 has only a small, light hood, and I haven't yet used it, preferring to have a clear filter for protection (the filter has no effect on IQ). And it is so sharp, although not as much as the DO, but good enough.  Having said that, I have no difficulty hand holding the 300/2.8 for long periods but it so large for packing to take on trips.

20
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 18, 2015, 03:44:03 PM »
I identified the island and the visitors centre on Google Earth, got their co-ordinates and calculate the distance to be 243 m. From that and the size of the image, I calculate the target was 1m x 1.3m. The lines in the lettering are only a couple of pixels wide with the 800mm lens.

21
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 18, 2015, 01:05:17 PM »
I am going to eat some of my words. Yesterday, at the end of some miserable attempts to photograph birds at a reserve, I stopped off at the visitor centre where you could see a Swarovski target that had been placed for an exhibition and had been left behind, a 100 or so  metres away. Here is a shot of the target with 420mm on the 5DIII, to get a feel for the scene. Next, is an unsharpened crop from RAW of the target with the 100-400mm on the 7DII at 400mm f/5.6 (the crop is close to 400 px wide at 100%). Below that is at f/8 and 560mm (about 560 px wide). At the bottom it's at 800mm f/11 using live view (close to 800 px wide). On going from 400mm to 500mm, there is a little improvement in resolution. But, on going to 800mm, it becomes much clearer and you can even read the numbers in the circle. I was so flabbergasted on getting home, that I checked my focus just in case live view was better than AF - it wasn't. It is just that you need to get to 800mm to resolve the fine details, and below that they are merged (below the Nyqvist limit).

So, the 100-400mm II takes the 2xTCIII very well, and the 7DII focusses really well in live view at f/11. I can't wait to photo the moon with the 7DII/800mm, and I am drooling at the thought of a 400 DO II with a 2xTC!

22
Lenses / Re: Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens Review
« on: January 18, 2015, 12:39:29 PM »
It is a superb lens - pity it is so expensive.

AlanF, just curious, I know you own the 300 f/2.8. Since the new 400 DO II is only $300 more expensive, do you feel the 300mm is "so expensive," as well? In other words, how do you rate the relative value of these two lenses, given their fairly large differences in focal length, aperture and weight--but relatively small difference in cost?

I'm looking to step up from the 400L f/5.6 primarily because I want IS, and I'd certainly appreciate that extra stop. I could get the new 100-400L II, but since my lighter and more compact 70-300L is my go-to travel lens, I think the 100-400 would remain parked at 400. For these reasons, price aside, the new 400DO II is awfully appealing.

Finally, CR claimed the 400 DO's were going to start shipping on Dec 18th, but I've yet to see one show up anywhere online for sale. B&H shows two "user reviews," but Adorama and Amazon show none. LensRentals says you can pre-reserve one, so they don't have one yet, either. When Canon originally announced the lens, it was supposed to start shipping in Nov 2014, but thus far seems like vaporware. Has anyone heard anything about Canon's actual ship date?

Sorry, I missed this post and apologise for the delay in answering. The price for the 400 DO II at Wex in the UK is £6999, that for the 300mm/2.8 II is discounted to £4899. So, there is a huge price differential here.

Even if the price were the same, it would be a difficult choice. Firstly, the weights are pretty close, 2350g vs 2100g, and they are both amazingly sharp. Secondly, you have to balance how much you would like 300mm at f/2.8 vs 400mm at f/4. Thirdly, I would guess that my most used combination would be either the 400+1.4xTC or the 300+2xTC, with little too choose between them. However, I have been playing around with the 100-400 II plus 2xTC using live view at f/11 on the 7DII, and am very impressed with 800mm!

Having the 100-400 II does confuse the issue even more. I would dearly like to have the DO as well, but it would be difficult to justify for a second-rate amateur like me.

23
Snowy owl. 60mm and f8 handheld.... and yes, the lens does work at -20C.....

The real question is, why are you working at -20C?  ;D
And how at 60mm? Does the lens thermally contract?

24
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 16, 2015, 05:09:46 PM »
This review concurs with what I have been arguing.

http://kentjarrett.com/tag/canon-100-400-is-mark-ii/

"I was asked after I did this test to also shoot the Canon 7D mark ii with the 100-400 mark ii with the teleconverter.  I found this setup to be very shaky as I tried to track and shoot Eagles free hand.  This combo needs to be shot from the tripod,"

25
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 16, 2015, 04:41:11 AM »
Isaac, they are beautiful shots - well done. Unfortunately, there has been nothing near me recently of real interest or sufficiently close. If you can fill much of the frame, then all of these lenses will give spectacular results. The better the lens, the smaller the subject you can get good photos of.

26
Lenses / Re: My first results with the Canon 100-400 II
« on: January 15, 2015, 05:09:01 PM »
The blue tit is really good. Is it a 100% crop or have you reduced it in size?

27
Lenses / Re: EF 100-400mm ii vs. EF 200-400 with 1.4 TC
« on: January 15, 2015, 05:00:51 PM »
My vote is for the 100-400 unless Mac buys me the 200-400 and carries it for me.

28
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 15, 2015, 04:42:04 PM »
Sorry this isn't the 7DII, but here are birds in flight taken with the 100-400mm + 1.4xTC III at f/8 on the 5DIII. They are all 100% crops (1 pixel - 1 pixel from original) with minimal processing. I am quite happy using just the single point focus at f/8. The lens focusses fast and well, and I find the 560mm on FF about right for me. (I don't take only iso12233 charts.) These are at least as good as what I took with the Tamron also at f/8, and I think the AF is better on the 100-400. Leaving the TC on the 100-400 gives 140-560, which is close to the range of the Tamron.

29
Lenses / Re: canon 7D2 with 100-400 ii lens with 1.4 Extender for birds
« on: January 15, 2015, 02:48:30 PM »
...............
The Tamron has deteriorated somewhat vs the sharper 300 series.


What a lens - the 300 f/2.8 II!
Still, I see you added the zoom (100-400II) to your collection. Is that because of the zoom? What is the benefit for you in the field?

The intentions was and still is to have a much lighter and smaller telephoto lens of high quality for when I go travelling abroad or want to have a less conspicuous camera/lens. I assumed that I would still use the incredible 300/2.8 + 2xTC for my usual birding near to home. The unexpected bonus has been that my wife has fallen for the 7DII/100-400mm II and we now go out together with my carrying the 5DIII/300x2 and her the zoom. The zoom capability is a bonus. I think taking both cameras and lenses on a safari would be perfect combination.

30
ePhotozine has just posted a review.
http://www.ephotozine.com/article/sigma-150-600mm-f-5-6-3-dg-os-hsm-sports-lens-review-26786

The MTFs are consistent with those reported by lenstip.It beats out the Tamron wide open at 150 and 300mm, but is very similar at the crucial 600mm - see also the review of the Tamron

http://www.ephotozine.com/article/tamron-sp-150-600mm-f-5-6-3-di-vc-usd-lens-review-23866

at f/8, there is nothing between them at any f. Again, the reviewer complains about the weight.

Here are the MTFs from the ePhotozine site, which is doing brilliantly for rapid reviewing (sigma = upper, tamron lower).

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