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Author Topic: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II  (Read 4523 times)

christianronnel

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EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« on: January 19, 2013, 12:37:44 AM »
I'm looking for an excellent lens for use in fast sports and portraits.  I'm considering between these 3 lenses.  It's really hard to find comparisons of these lenses let alone individual reviews.  So I'm depending on the professional photographers here whom have used any of these lenses.

EF 200 mm F/1.8 L USM - used on Ebay - US$3200-4000 (but they look like they've been driven over by a truck)
EF 200mm f/2L IS USM - New on Amazon - $6000
EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM II - New on Amazon - $6800

There's about $2000 gap in prices in between these lenses.  But price is not the deciding factor.  I care about being able to use the lens wide open so it needs to be super sharp at the widest aperture.  The IS is also not a big deal since I'll be shooting upwards of 1/200.  I would like to use extenders (stacked if possible), how much loss in IQ is sacrificed for reach.

As of now I'm considering 200f1.8 but it's tough to find one in good condition.  It seems practical in terms of range, 280mm F2.5 or 400mm F3.5 or 560mm F5.6 (stacked is doable).  The images I've seen so far are just amazingly sharp and the bokeh is simply stunning.  I can't reproduce it with my 70-200 f2.8 v2 even if I try my best.

What are your experiences with the any of the lenses?  Which one is a more practical - range, portability, focusing speed, AI servo performance, Image quality at widest aperture, bokeh quality?

Thank you very much for your time,
Christian
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EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« on: January 19, 2013, 12:37:44 AM »

bdunbar79

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2013, 12:58:07 AM »
The 200 f/2L is going to be much better IMO than the f/1.8 version.  The 1.8 is a legendary lens yes, but any one of them you'd find is going to be pretty old and the f/2 version is better at f/2.  For best 200 lens, the 200 f/2L is arguably the best prime lens period that Canon currently makes.  It is very sharp wide open and focuses sufficiently fast in sports.  It also makes for a unique portrait lens.  I own it and love it but unfortunately I don't use it that much right now, which is really sad.

The 300 f/2.8L II lens is ridiculously sharp.  The advantage here is that you get longer focal length, and pretty much would beat hands down the 200L with an extender.  It focuses faster than the 200 in sports. 

Do you know which focal length would be more useful to you?
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christianronnel

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2013, 01:16:53 AM »
I originally saved up for the 300mm because I need something longer than the 70-200.  A friend told me that he sold his 300/2.8 to get a used 200/1.8.  He showed me some images and they are very convincing.  He also told me that the IQ wasn't reduced much when attaching an extender.
http://christopherwood.smugmug.com/photos/i-dzJMGwF/0/XL/i-dzJMGwF-XL.jpg

But he's one person, I'm curious what other pros would prefer.  Unfortunately I have to choose one.
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bdunbar79

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2013, 01:21:46 AM »
He's right, it wasn't reduced much, but it is reduced.  The 300 f/2.8L II IS if you need the focal length is going to be the best of the 3 lenses you listed.  Unfortunately, it's the most expensive, but I suppose there is reason for that.  It is a tough decision.
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sanj

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2013, 02:08:02 AM »
Be warned IS is important at 1/200 if shooting hand held!

Michael_pfh

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2013, 02:30:24 AM »
Service and availability of spare parts could be one reason not not go for the 200 1.8L, lack of IS another.

You should think carefully if you really need the F2.0 at 200mm, otherwise you might be better off with the 300 F2.8L IS II + 70-200 F2.8L IS II.

However, although I do certainly not need F2.0 at 200mm I will one day get the 200 F2.0L...
« Last Edit: January 19, 2013, 02:34:23 AM by Michael_pfh »
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dolina

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2013, 02:43:20 AM »
I've used the following

EF 200 mm F/1.8 L USM
- Canon will not service this anymore due to lack of parts
EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM II
- pretty solid lens. would go for it if I didn't have the previous version
- slighly lighter than the previous version

I own the following

EF 200mm f/2L IS USM
- Canon will still service
- lighter
- shorter focusing distance
- has 5 stops of IS
EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM

If I would have only one lens I'd go with EF 200mm f/2L IS USM and use extenders to get 280/2.8 and 400/4
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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2013, 02:43:20 AM »

Skulker

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2013, 03:45:58 AM »
I have the new 300 f2.8, the way i would put it is that I seldom if ever blame the lens for problems with my shots.  ;) I use it with extenders, but only ever one at a time.


From what I read it think the 200f2 is better, but that's with out extenders.  With extenders I doubt the advantage will remain. If you stack extenders you are getting well away from the outstanding IQ of the bare lens.

You say the 70-200 2.8 f2.8 mk2 is not good enough,  ::) again it's a lens I seldom blame if I'm unhappy with one of my images.

If you seek ultimate IQ go for a prime, or to meet all you focal length needs several primes. My advice would be to have a very good think about your expectations and needs. Then try hiring the lenses you are considering to see if it works for you.

And finally, most people find IS usually helps, and it certainly will at 560mm and 1/200. But I have known combinations were it always made the shots soft.

If you debate with a fool onlookers can find it VERY difficult to tell the difference.

AudioGlenn

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2013, 05:44:36 AM »
1st time I've ever read someone say that the 70-200 didn't deliver.  I'd seriously consider my approach to shooting/post production if I were you.  No offense...really.  It's an outstanding lens....Unless yours needs service.  I'd contact Canon Service if it doesn't wow you. 

As for the forum topic, I'd say go for the 300 2.8 II to add to your existing focal lengths and get the extenders as you need them.
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GuyF

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2013, 05:52:41 AM »
You say it's for use with fast sports and portraits - what sort of fast sport? Motor sport or basket ball? Indoors or not?

Whilst I haven't tried any of the lenses you are considering (I've got the 300mm f2.8 IS mk1), I can assure you the mk2 would be stunning if it's even just a slight improvement over the mk1. That said, I can't imagine using it for portraits - it would be too bulky and would place you a bit too far away from the subject in terms of interaction with them. If you have the sort of money to buy the mk2 I'd suggest you get the Sigma 85mm f1.4 too as it is superb for portraits.

I doubt anyone would regret getting the 300mm but a shorter lens may be better depending on the type of sport.

dolina

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2013, 06:30:43 AM »
I have both 70-200/2.8 IS and 70-200/2.8 IS II and I always go for the EF 200mm f/2L IS USM because it "is" that awesome.
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RMC33

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #11 on: January 20, 2013, 04:35:28 PM »
I have the 200 F/2 (Just got it and all giddy still) and the 70-200 Mk1/2. I will be getting rid of my Mk1 70-200 due to the sheer quality of this lens. I use mine primarily for skiing (mainly Park and half pipe) due to the fact that I can still ski with it and get the length I want with TC's, with minimal image quality loss on the MK3 TC's. It works great on a crop frame too, but as the reviews have stated it looks better on a FF. I rented it for three months and had to buy it when the rental was up because it was such a good piece of glass.

One more little bit: If you get a 200 f/2 and have a 5d MKIII read this first http://www.canonrumors.com/2012/03/5d-mark-iii-lens-combination-issues/
« Last Edit: January 20, 2013, 05:42:10 PM by RMC33 »

christianronnel

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2013, 12:00:27 AM »
First of all, thanks to everyone who replied.  I'm almost convinced to get the 300mm.  Secondly, what I meant by not being able to reproduce the look of the 200mm f1.8 for portraits using the 70-200.  I never said the 70-200 is a bad lens.  On the contrary I use it for all my paid gigs. 

I'm just starting and definitely have tons of learning to do.  I shoot local running and cycling races and now getting into wedding.  For sports, I need the extra reach hence the choice between getting a dedicated 300mm or using tele converters.  My consideration for portraiture was purely for the artistic effect that I saw from the 200mm f1.8.

For those of you who suggested i should reconsider other approaches to shooting with the 70-200, thanks!  I did exactly that and I found something called the Brenizer Method - http://www.ryanbrenizer.com/category/brenizer-method/  I'm going to try that method out before deciding on the lens to buy.


I have the 200 F/2 (Just got it and all giddy still) and the 70-200 Mk1/2. I will be getting rid of my Mk1 70-200 due to the sheer quality of this lens. I use mine primarily for skiing (mainly Park and half pipe) due to the fact that I can still ski with it and get the length I want with TC's, with minimal image quality loss on the MK3 TC's. It works great on a crop frame too, but as the reviews have stated it looks better on a FF. I rented it for three months and had to buy it when the rental was up because it was such a good piece of glass.

One more little bit: If you get a 200 f/2 and have a 5d MKIII read this first http://www.canonrumors.com/2012/03/5d-mark-iii-lens-combination-issues/
Thanks for the recommendation and the warning.  I'll be aware of the issue in my considerations.
Don't take life too seriously; no one makes it out alive anyway

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2013, 12:00:27 AM »

RMC33

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #13 on: January 21, 2013, 12:17:47 AM »
First of all, thanks to everyone who replied.  I'm almost convinced to get the 300mm.  Secondly, what I meant by not being able to reproduce the look of the 200mm f1.8 for portraits using the 70-200.  I never said the 70-200 is a bad lens.  On the contrary I use it for all my paid gigs. 

I'm just starting and definitely have tons of learning to do.  I shoot local running and cycling races and now getting into wedding.  For sports, I need the extra reach hence the choice between getting a dedicated 300mm or using tele converters.  My consideration for portraiture was purely for the artistic effect that I saw from the 200mm f1.8.

For those of you who suggested i should reconsider other approaches to shooting with the 70-200, thanks!  I did exactly that and I found something called the Brenizer Method - http://www.ryanbrenizer.com/category/brenizer-method/  I'm going to try that method out before deciding on the lens to buy.


I have the 200 F/2 (Just got it and all giddy still) and the 70-200 Mk1/2. I will be getting rid of my Mk1 70-200 due to the sheer quality of this lens. I use mine primarily for skiing (mainly Park and half pipe) due to the fact that I can still ski with it and get the length I want with TC's, with minimal image quality loss on the MK3 TC's. It works great on a crop frame too, but as the reviews have stated it looks better on a FF. I rented it for three months and had to buy it when the rental was up because it was such a good piece of glass.

One more little bit: If you get a 200 f/2 and have a 5d MKIII read this first http://www.canonrumors.com/2012/03/5d-mark-iii-lens-combination-issues/
Thanks for the recommendation and the warning.  I'll be aware of the issue in my considerations.

No problem. I tested it out when I got it (I was lucky) and it had been serviced. I should have said I just bought it as I have had it for the last 3 months now.

On the note of running and cycling. I can see this lens being WONDERFUL in a turn or corner especially if you can get a little bit above the action since your in a bit tighter quarters. If you ever get into shooting Kayaking this one is a golden beauty as well.

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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2013, 12:48:59 AM »
I cant comment on the 200 f/1.8, but I do own & use both the 200f/2 & the 300f/2.8 V2, both are amazing Lenses, both sharp, fast to focus & reasonably similar now (with the weight reduction in the 300 v2) in weight.

Of the Lenses I own (the above 2 plus the 400f/2.8 V2 & 600f/4 V2), the 300f/2.8 V2 lens is my most used Long Lens (Focal Length 200 and above), I'm continually amazed by it's sharpness & although I prefer to shoot this Lens on a Monopod, it's very hand holdable as well, as is the 200f/2. I shoot both on the 1Dx, 1DMKIV & 5DMKIII.

Only issue I have had with these Lenses has been the ridiculous requirement to have to send both Lenses (As well as the 400 & 600) back to Canon Singapore to have the Firmware upgraded, no noticeable difference with the 300/400/600 since upgrading but now the 200 works on the 5DMk3 without the Grinding noise during focus hunt it had prior to the firmware upgrade.

Either Lens is going to work for you I'm sure, my pick though would be the 300f/2.8 L V2, in my opinion the best Lens I own, bar none.


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Re: EF200mm f1.8L vs EF200mm f2L IS vs EF300mm f2.8L IS II
« Reply #14 on: January 21, 2013, 12:48:59 AM »