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Messages - Act444

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256
Lenses / Re: 70-300L on 5D Mark III
« on: May 28, 2012, 02:46:11 PM »
Quote
Yeah Act, I agree that the main thing here is the f/5.6 at 300mm, and it's quite capable of delivering great results though. I'm sad to hear that 70-200 f/2.8 II is a pain to carry around though - I was looking forward to maybe getting it sometime in the future, but since it's impossible to walk all day with it... Then it appears like I've just saved myself some $2500 worth of equipment :-)

Don't get me wrong- the 70-200 2.8 is an EXCELLENT lens and for what it does, there's nothing else like it. It is best for sporting events (if you are close) as well as autograph/book signings, which often take place indoors (and f5.6 just won't cut it- I hate using flash). It is extremely versatile and I like that. But, it is not a lens I would want to sling around my neck and walk around with all day long...even for the couple of hours I use it, it gets tiring. But it is worth it when you view the images afterward!

The 70-300L is the telephoto lens I use when it is not worth lugging the extra weight of the 70-200. Basically, outdoor events in good lighting and animal shots where the variable aperture isn't an issue. Plus, 100mm of extra reach is gained and for animal shots, it can make a BIG difference!
Well, I was hoping 5d mark III's ISO performance would allow me to use it indoors. We'll see about that :-)

I have a 60D so I typically will not shoot above ISO 3200. With the 5DIII you might be able to go up to 6400 comfortably- it seems that camera has REALLY good high ISO performance.

257
Lenses / Re: 70-300L on 5D Mark III
« on: May 28, 2012, 02:10:34 PM »
Is the 70-300mmL worth the extra dough over the standard 70-300mm? Thats the Question... 8)

I tried the regular 70-300 in-store before settling on the L version eventually. I didn't evaluate its image quality but there is a HUGE difference between the 2 in build quality. You really do get what you pay for.

The regular 70-300 felt like a camera toy in my hand- the 70-300L feels like a serious piece of professional photographic equipment. Ultimately it's about the IQ for me and I've heard that the regular 70-300 is pretty weak at the 300mm end, so that's why I went for the L version.

Best thing is to try both out (if you can), then weigh the pros and cons of each. The regular one IS lighter, and 1/3 the price, so if weight and/or budget is an issue that's probably the way to go. But if you demand the highest in IQ it's probably worth it to save up.

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...is the 70-200 II noticeably better than the 70-300L in image quality, and is the f2.8 worth the added bulk and weight.

depends on what you're shooting, and on what environment you will be shooting in. For me, the two lenses are interchangeable depending on what my telephoto needs are, exactly. Sports or indoors? f2.8 wins. Outdoors in daylight or animal photography? 70-300 with extra reach.

As for IQ, the 70-200 wins at the 70mm end, certainly. I'd even say the 70-200 at 70/2.8 outperforms the 70-300 at 70/4! At the 200mm end they seem to be quite close, though. I don't think you'd notice a difference in everyday shots...and in good light, the lighter weight of the 70-300 in that case is certainly appreciated. (Note that at 200mm the 70-300 has you at f5 minimum so it is nearly 2 stops slower here.)

258
Lenses / Re: 70-300L on 5D Mark III
« on: May 28, 2012, 01:35:16 PM »
Quote
Yeah Act, I agree that the main thing here is the f/5.6 at 300mm, and it's quite capable of delivering great results though. I'm sad to hear that 70-200 f/2.8 II is a pain to carry around though - I was looking forward to maybe getting it sometime in the future, but since it's impossible to walk all day with it... Then it appears like I've just saved myself some $2500 worth of equipment :-)

Don't get me wrong- the 70-200 2.8 is an EXCELLENT lens and for what it does, there's nothing else like it. It is best for sporting events (if you are close) as well as autograph/book signings, which often take place indoors (and f5.6 just won't cut it- I hate using flash). It is extremely versatile and I like that. But, it is not a lens I would want to sling around my neck and walk around with all day long...even for the couple of hours I use it, it gets tiring. But it is worth it when you view the images afterward!

The 70-300L is the telephoto lens I use when it is not worth lugging the extra weight of the 70-200. Basically, outdoor events in good lighting and animal shots where the variable aperture isn't an issue. Plus, 100mm of extra reach is gained and for animal shots, it can make a BIG difference!

259
Lenses / Re: 70-300L on 5D Mark III
« on: May 28, 2012, 12:03:22 PM »
I used to have the 70-200 f4: since I traded up to the f2.8 version I also got the 70-300.

The 70-300, although still big & white (and thus an attention-grabber) is MUCH easier to walk around with than the 70-200 2.8. I don't even mind hiking with it- it's probably at the limit of what I'm willing to carry around all day long on a camera.

As for IQ, compared to the 70-200 f4 I think it holds its own pretty well. The extra 100mm, although not really that much TBH, CAN make a difference in the appropriate situations. I think the 70-300 is weaker at the wide-end though- specifically wide open at f4 it can be soft. But it shines at the most important setting: 300mm at f5.6. No need to stop down at the long end to get sharp shots!

260
EOS Bodies / Re: Canon EOS 70D & EOS 7D Mark II Speculation [CR1]
« on: May 21, 2012, 02:14:04 PM »
Normally don't comment on rumors but just want to say I'd rather Canon stick with 18MP but make improvements in DR and high ISO performance than increase MP count at the expense of those two highly important items. 18MP is honestly enough for me, and seems to already be pushing certain lenses to the edge of their performance capabilities, so...

261
Lenses / Re: varying aperture zoom lenses
« on: May 18, 2012, 07:30:40 PM »
Amen.

The ONE exception I've since allowed is the 70-300 f4-5.6 L, and that's because of what I'm using it for (outdoor concerts & events, animal & bird shots around the immediate area)- and I'm almost always using f5.6-f11 for these shots anyway.

262
Canon General / Re: Suggestions on new Canon DSLR -- thinking 60D
« on: May 18, 2012, 11:04:15 AM »
Hi,

First of all, welcome!

Two and a half years ago, I was in the same exact position you were, just starting out with a DSLR, frustrated with the awful, red-eye-laden shots my P&S was taking in indoor, low-light situations. There was definitely a learning curve once I did get my DSLR (I started out with a Rebel T2i)- my initial shots weren't much better than my P&S shots, kept getting blurry/OOF shots and wasn't really sure why it was happening. Long story short, to take full advantage of the new features and additional control I now had, I had to read up all on the basics of photography, talk to people, and practice- learn through trial and error. You'll find out that things as small as the way you hold the camera, your stance, etc. can affect the quality of pictures you get. Until good technique is achieved, it really doesn't matter what lens you start out with- the photos will likely look the same.

What I did was I got my T2i/kit lens combo, used that to get comfortable with the camera, learn it, etc. As soon as I was ready to do some serious work with it though, I immediately ditched the kit lens and went for something better (the 24-105 f4). You can go ahead and start out with the 60D and 18-135 if you want- but I think you'll find that as you improve, you'll want a better quality lens. The T3i/60D/7D/5DIII are truly high-megapixel beasts that demand high-quality lenses if you ever want to see their full potential. If you want to jump right in, you might want to think about a cheaper body (a Rebel series) and use the money saved to get something like the 15-85mm lens (praised highly by many people here). When it comes to picture quality, the lens is really what's most important. You'll get higher quality shots with a Rebel and a 15-85 or 50mm than you would with a 60D or 7D with 18-135 or 18-200.

Kind of long, but hope this helps.

263
Lenses / Re: 70-200: 2.8L vs 4L IS?
« on: May 18, 2012, 12:46:25 AM »
I had the f4 IS. I since traded it in for the 2.8 IS II (since I was really pushing the ISO limit indoors with f4) and absolutely love it. Since you mentioned you don't do sports, you probably don't need the extra stop of the 2.8- instead, IS will come in handy (and would probably be much more useful than the extra stop to you). I think the IS version has better image quality, too.

264
Lenses / Re: 24-105mm f/4 L IS on a crop camera
« on: May 17, 2012, 11:44:42 AM »
I use 24-105 as a walkaround on the 60D. Great range, but most importantly, it's constant aperture (I don't like variable aperture general zoom lenses) and it has weather sealing, also unlike the consumer zooms. Not to mention I think it's a better long-term investment as well. I don't think the 15-85 was out yet at the time I got mine, but if I had to choose between the two I would get the 24-105 again because of the above mentioned benefits. I find I use the long end much more frequently than the wide end, anyway- and the only time I find 24mm too long is in crowded indoor spaces. But I have the 17-55 for that.

I guess it depends on one's needs though. Photographers who do more landscape work may prefer the wide 15mm end of the 15-85. I happen to prefer the extra reach I get on the 85-105mm end and it's not often I wish I had something wider while walking about, but that's just my personal style.

265
Lenses / Re: EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 HELP
« on: May 15, 2012, 08:54:11 PM »
I got this lens last year after using a Tamron 17-50 2.8 VC. It's THE social event lens- wide enough for those group shots, and 2.8 lets in enough light indoors if it's bright enough. IS works WONDERS in dark events since you can handhold posed shots down to 1/15s! The only caveat is that 55mm isn't always enough reach to snap candids since once you get close enough, you're noticed.

Great lens, only wish it were weather sealed so it wouldn't be prone to dust and other stuff getting in it. Good performance throughout the range, sharp at 2.8 and actually doesn't improve that much upon stopping it down. This was unlike the Tamron which was INCREDIBLY soft (almost useless) at 2.8, but boy, once you hit 5.6- if you got a well-focused shot, WOW.

266
Last year when I shot a similar event, I used my 60D and the 17-55 2.8 (and 580ex II flash). That was all I needed...

From your setup, seems like the 24-105 and flash should be sufficient. Event photography is not that easy as I found out! Lighting is the most important issue to try to nail down.

267
The difference between 200mm and 300mm seemed rather trivial when I first experimented at the camera store (seriously, it's like the equivalent of taking a small step forward)...but out in the field, it actually CAN make a difference. And the farther away your subject is, of course, the more difference you will notice.

I chose the 70-300L over the 100-400 due to its higher image quality and lighter weight (win-win for me). I assumed I could possibly even crop the 300mm image to approximate 400mm and still get equivalent quality to what I would have gotten with the 100-400 at 400.

But YMMV. I would try both and see. Basically, your choice will be between extra reach (100-400) and lighter weight (70-300). Also, remember the wide end as well. 70 vs 100 is quite a difference if you need to pull back.

Are you shooting 1.6x or full-frame? When maximum reach is needed, it is REALLY nice to have the 1.6x factor that an APS-C camera gives you.

268
Lenses / Re: Seeking lens in the 85-100mm range
« on: May 09, 2012, 02:33:55 PM »
Yeah...I guess I can see how since I've always used a "crop" camera. Have no desire of going FF any time soon since I prefer the extra reach I get with the 1.6x camera, particularly with a telephoto like the 70-300 where 300 gives you pretty good reach in a compact package.

I try to avoid changing lenses "in the field", so I usually determine what it is I wish to shoot, then pick the appropriate lens before I go out. This means I usually pick zoom lenses since it means more flexibility, but fixed focals do have their advantages too, as I'm finding out.

269
Depends...and it has varied over the years :)

Now, I use mostly Av mode to have control over DOF (especially with fast lenses), or when shooting sports, Custom mode (which I configure for manual exposure, auto ISO, AI servo and * to focus). Occasionally I will use Tv mode when using the 70-200 indoors so I can take full advantage of the IS function to handhold slower shutter speeds.

270
Lenses / Re: Seeking lens in the 85-100mm range
« on: May 07, 2012, 11:45:14 PM »
Interesting. Good to know!

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  It did seem that on my t2i the 100 2.0 would once in a while be just a smidgen front- focusing as I sometimes would get a little sharper on large aperture shots using Live View focusing.

I used to have a T2i before I "upgraded" to the 60D which I now love. I think that camera had a serious front-focusing problem- it seemed any fast lens I used/tried with it seemed to be off a bit- very inconsistent as it would front-focus in one shot, be fine the next, then exhibit slight backfocus in the 3rd. Maybe it was just my camera rather than the T2i model, but I find the 60D to be notably better in terms of focus accuracy (not perfect though).

I couldn't tell for sure, but I thought there may have been a SLIGHT back-focus with the 100 2 with the camera I tested it on at the store (also a 60D).

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The 24-105 kit lens that came with the 5D Mk 3, however was off at the long end.  Even with AFMA  applied to that lens, at 100 it has nowhere near the IQ as the two 100 primes.

I have the 24-105 as well, and it definitely appears that the 100L can resolve more detail off buildings than the 24-105L can at 100 (I have not done a side-by-side comparison, but I was amazed at the quality from the former lens). But the 24-105 has been a fine lens for me. Maybe I have a good "copy" (or whatnot), but I have been pleased with it. For me, it is a great walk-around "compromise" lens. Good range, decent reach at 105 (too short for animal photos however), constant f4 aperture beats the 3.5-5.6 you typically get from consumer all-purpose zoom lenses, good IQ that you don't get from the 18-55 kit lens, and most importantly, it has IS. If I know what I'm going to shoot I usually go for a more specific lens, but hard-pressed to find a better all-around than this one.

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The 100 2.0 is faster to focus than the 100 2.8L macro, probably due to the lesser total focus range.  It is also very quiet focusing.    I think you may have hit on a possible explanation for your initial impression of the lens' sharpness - using a pretty high shutter speed (1/250 or more) is what I found I needed to be sure to 'take the shake out' using handheld, which is more than the rule of thumb would say you needed for this lens; ie 1/160th  on a crop sensor camera.

Ah, that makes sense. I went back and looked at the EXIF info from my test shots with that lens. Most were taken at 1/160s (which I would think would be fast enough, but apparently not). For sports I'd likely be going much higher than that anyway. Occasional meet & greets should they come up, though- might have an issue getting a steady image. I suppose flash + high ISO would be needed to compensate.

The 100L does have a switch on it to limit its focus range should you need to use it for general photo shooting (such as a portrait session, perhaps)...tested this out today and the focus is much faster, much more responsive like this. Left on "full", sometimes it can hunt through the entire range and slow down the process dramatically.

Again, thanks for your feedback, greatly appreciated!

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