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Author Topic: Need opinions on telephoto choice  (Read 5168 times)

AlanF

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2012, 11:50:03 AM »
At the risk of being repetitive, it all depends what you want the lens for. If you want to sit in a bird hide with a hefty tripod, then the longer the lens the better - the 500 is excellent and the 600 even better (especially if you have a porter to carry it) and it will beat out the smaller lenses with extenders  - I'd love to have one of them with a 1.4 TC. If you want to stroll around with a relatively light lens with a good zoom range, the 100-400mm L IS is a great lens, provided you get a good copy. If you want to walk around with a camera slung over your shoulder or a heavier weight in your hand that is till manageable for opportunistic photos or sitting in a hide, then it is the 300. So, it's horses for courses. If you are rich enough, by them all. The 100-400mm is a good start to see what range you really want.
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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2012, 11:50:03 AM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2012, 12:06:58 PM »
The 500mm MkII is a lovely lens, but it weighs 1.4 lb more than the 300, which makes it too heavy for hand holding.
I'd say that's definitely a personal call - I've heard lots of people say that any dSLR is 'too heavy'.  My 1D X + 600mm f/4L IS II totals up to less than half weight of the toddler that I carry around in my left arm for reasonable lengths of time.  The shots in this post were all handheld with the 1D X and 600 II.  The last one was with the 1.4xIII extender and was shot as I was almost back to the trailhead after a ~3 mile hike with the lens slung over my shoulder (I had a monopod hanging from my belt, but I didn't need it).  The 500mm MkI weighs approximately the same as the 600mm MkII, and I would not hesitate to get the 500 MkI as a handholding bird lens (if I didn't already have the 600 II, that is ;) ).
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AlanF

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #17 on: October 13, 2012, 04:25:41 AM »
Agreed for you youngsters - my grandchildren are far older than your toddlers! The choice is there according to your needs. If you are strong, the 500 is unbeatable for portability and quality. If you are my age, then the smaller is more comfortable. 
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kirispupis

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2012, 11:44:12 AM »
Thank you everyone for the replies.  After considering the replies here as well as other info available I decided the 500 I would be the best choice - not only for the additional reach but because the price is better.  Unfortunately after hearing positive responses towards the idea of a 300/2.8 II, the budget was not approved.

My budget for a telephoto is now around $3k so the only chance I see right now of improving my telephoto story is if Canon announces a new 100-400 at the end of this month.  Otherwise I will have to stick with the 70-200/2.8 II + 2x III and put the funds towards something else (somewhat complicated - but after this December I lose most of my budget whether I use it or not).
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PackLight

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2012, 12:02:57 PM »
Thank you everyone for the replies.  After considering the replies here as well as other info available I decided the 500 I would be the best choice - not only for the additional reach but because the price is better.  Unfortunately after hearing positive responses towards the idea of a 300/2.8 II, the budget was not approved.

My budget for a telephoto is now around $3k so the only chance I see right now of improving my telephoto story is if Canon announces a new 100-400 at the end of this month.  Otherwise I will have to stick with the 70-200/2.8 II + 2x III and put the funds towards something else (somewhat complicated - but after this December I lose most of my budget whether I use it or not).

My next option after the 300mm f/2.8 II would be the 300mm f/2.8 I version. You might be able to get one in the middle 3k's.

SwissBear

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2012, 12:23:18 PM »
how about the sigma 300-800? takes pictures i heard, but at what quality i cant say...
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kirispupis

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2012, 01:27:52 PM »
The 300-800 isn't really a possibility.  It is $8k - more than the 300/2.8 II, has no IS, is blown away by even the I version of the Canon teles and Sigma has a horrible reputation for quality - especially in their telephotos.

The 300/2.8 version I is a possibility, but at this point I am taking a different direction.  My wife will likely not approve the budget for that lens because she knows me too well.  She knows it will only be a temporary stopgap until I can afford something better whereas if she approves of the expense she won't want to hear about another telephoto for a very long time.

The other argument from my wife's perspective (and she has a point here) is she already agreed to let me buy a 600/4 II if the novel I just finished makes enough to pay for it.  Therefore her opinion is that I am cheating by asking for a telephoto now - even if it is a much cheaper one.

I will likely invest the money into improving my drop photography solution instead, where I can have a much bigger impact given the budget.
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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2012, 01:27:52 PM »

johnf3f

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #22 on: October 24, 2012, 08:56:40 PM »
New (today!) to this forum so here is my 2p for what it's worth.
My long lenses are a 600 F4 L IS Mk1 and a 300 F2.8 L IS Mk1. The 600 is a bit of a monster and handholding it is a cause hilarity amongst my friends! However for bird photography the longer the better!
Very recently I purchased a used 300 F2.8 IS Mk1 and have been doing a little birding to try it out. I have yet to try the bare lens, as it is too short for this sort of thing, so have been using mainly with a 2 x Mk3 extender.
I have tried to attach a couple of unedited images - hope they come out!

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Re: Need opinions on telephoto choice
« Reply #22 on: October 24, 2012, 08:56:40 PM »