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Author Topic: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS  (Read 9183 times)

VitorMachado

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IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« on: April 12, 2013, 09:21:59 AM »
Well, title says it all. I've never shot with an IS telephoto lens and I was wondering if that should affect my next purchase? I don't do video whatsoever and I try to shoot handheld when possible (although I will 'pod it when necessary). The couple stops of Aperture seem to be quite a difference but I'm willing to compromise if the IS makes that much of a difference. As you all probably know, these lenses are within the same price range so the money isn't a factor. Thanks in advance!

* Most of my photography are static objects but I do like to shoot moving animals occasionally.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2013, 09:44:55 AM by VitorMachado »
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IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« on: April 12, 2013, 09:21:59 AM »

robbymack

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2013, 09:28:44 AM »
Personally I'd rather have IS and not need it than need it and not have it. For me the advantage of IS is a steady viewfinder which even when using high shutter speeds helps you keep focus on target. You honestly can't really go wrong with either of the two lenses above.

Random Orbits

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2013, 09:56:14 AM »
For static subjects, IS is more useful.  It will allow you to decrease ISO/shutter speed and achieve better IQ.  If you were shooting sports or moving animals more, then you'd want to to shoot at higher shutter speeds, where IS would make less of a difference.

RLPhoto

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2013, 10:10:17 AM »
I survived without IS for a while. I don't need it with my 24LII or my 50L, but my 135L seriously needs IS. If your shooting action though, IS is irrelevant but lens speed is more important.

neuroanatomist

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2013, 10:19:29 AM »
If you need f/2.8 for shutter speed or DoF, get the f/2.8.  Else get the f/4 IS.

Or pay more and get the f/2.8L IS II.  :)
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michi

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2013, 10:22:20 AM »
All good advice here. I think I would rather have IS than 2.8.  Yes, when shooting action, 2.8 is better than IS at 4.0 to stop the action.  But once you stop down, that advantage is gone.  So, unless you mostly shoot action wide open, I think the f4 IS would be the better more versatile option.  Oh, and also lighter and smaller.

yablonsky

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2013, 11:27:24 AM »
Definitely the f/4 with IS. Since this is a tele lens, you really need it. I once switched off the IS of my 300 f/4 and wondered why the landscape was shaking so badly. The longer the reach the more IS you need. Or a tripod.
The 70-200 f/4 IS is a great lens. It costs half of the 2.8 and has half of the weight. Which is important if you hike.
Image quality, sharpness and contrast is great. I can really recommend that one.
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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2013, 11:27:24 AM »

dcren123

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2013, 11:43:43 AM »
I agree with everyone else, get the IS version, be it f2.8 or f4 ;)

with the 2.8 non-IS unless you're shooting with high shutter speed, you'll need a tripod to keep the lens steady, and since you mention you try to shoot handheld when possible, IS is a must (especially since the 2.8 is so heavy). Also, f4 is only one stop slower than the f2.8. You could try renting both first and trying them out.

IMHO The F4L with IS is just that much more convenient than the 2.8 non-IS variant.
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sdsr

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #8 on: April 12, 2013, 11:45:51 AM »
If you will always be using the lens in bright light and have a steady hand, you probably don't need IS at all.  But if, like me, you will often want to use it in lower light, and if you're not trying to freeze action or minimize depth of focus, you may find, as I do, that f/4 + IS yields better results than f/2.8 without it.  Even though I seem to have a pretty steady hand (I've taken taken some sharp photos in very low light with the 135L and 200 f/2.8 L at very slow shutter speeds), I'm still not as good as IS and I would rather not worry about it.

distant.star

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #9 on: April 12, 2013, 11:52:08 AM »
.
While I can't speak to those lenses specifically, I use the f/4.0 without IS (Roger at Lens Rentals says it's sharper than the IS version, for what that's worth). Anyway, I've found that unless it's a bright sunny day, I leave it home. Either that or get it on a tripod.

For good light, it's excellent, but I really suffer the lack of IS.
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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #10 on: April 12, 2013, 12:39:00 PM »
I've had multiple copies of all three versions of the f/2.8, and the IS version of the f/4. 
Use of the non IS version was not a issue for me, but I knew to keep my shutter speeds up to 1/200 sec, usually 1/400 if I could.  It is a wonderful lens, and used prices make it better.  Since it does not have IS, its simpler and seems to be more reliable.
Obviously, IS is more forgiving of my sloppy practices, but after learning the best settings for no IS at 200mm, it worked very well.
 
Here is a handheld shot with the f/2.8 non IS and a 1.4X TC.  Its a near 100% crop.  Wide open aperture and 1/320 sec.  280mm equiv.  I found the lens locally for $300.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Pi

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2013, 12:12:37 AM »
IS is pretty much mandatory at this FL. An additional bonus is to shoot at ISO 100 most of the time.

The IS of the 70-200/4 IS is phenomenal. The best I have ever used.

Botts

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2013, 03:51:52 PM »
Well, title says it all. I've never shot with an IS telephoto lens and I was wondering if that should affect my next purchase? I don't do video whatsoever and I try to shoot handheld when possible (although I will 'pod it when necessary). The couple stops of Aperture seem to be quite a difference but I'm willing to compromise if the IS makes that much of a difference. As you all probably know, these lenses are within the same price range so the money isn't a factor. Thanks in advance!

* Most of my photography are static objects but I do like to shoot moving animals occasionally.

I went through a similar decision last year.

I shoot handheld whenever possible.  I shoot mostly static objects with my camera, sometimes I shoot moving animals.

For me, on a static subject, the IS made a bigger difference than the extra stop in terms of sharpness.  I went with the 70-200/4 IS.

This was with the 70-200/4 IS on a 6D at 1600 ISO, f/4, 1/125s.

IMG_2250 by BrianBotterill, on Flickr
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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2013, 03:51:52 PM »

DCM1024

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2013, 07:18:13 PM »
I haven't missed IS on my 135L, even in low light. For 200mm, I feel I would definitely need either IS or a tripod. The length of the lens comes into play here (at least for me). I love my 70-200 F4 IS.

risc32

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2013, 08:05:35 PM »
I don't see how this can go down any other way. You either care more about shooting things that don't move(get the f4IS) or things that do move(get one of the 2.8 options). For shooting stationary things IS will more than make up for the 1 stop of speed loss. Or just pony up more money for a larger heavier 2.8IS. BTW- I consider the heavier 2.8 easier to hold steady than the lighter f4's. depending on how you work, you might care about filter sizes. Or not...

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Re: IS mandatory? 70-200 f/4 IS vs. f/2.8 Non-IS
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2013, 08:05:35 PM »