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Author Topic: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP  (Read 2779 times)

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EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« on: June 24, 2013, 09:23:44 AM »

From The Digital Picture

Bryan has completed his full review of the Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x (we’re still working on ours). As expected, the review is a glowing one as this lens performs unbelievably well for a zoom.


Says Bryan:

“If the f/4 max aperture is not an issue for you, the Canon EF 200-400mm f/4 L IS USM Ext 1.4x Lens, by virtue of its focal length range, can replace several other lenses in your kit. It will deliver stunning image quality and should stand up to professional use. I’m still integrating this lens into my kit, but … I have been using it for almost everything I shoot since it arrived. I expected awesomeness and the 200-400 L delivered it.”


Read the full review 


Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x $11,799 USD



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EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« on: June 24, 2013, 09:23:44 AM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2013, 09:35:13 AM »
A stellar lens, certainly.

One interesting (and concerning!) note from the review: "Canon does not advise shifting the extender into place until IS turns off and all memory card writing ceases. The Canon rep I talked to strongly advised against doing this and suggested that a service visit may be required of a lens that has been used in this way. Apparently electronics are at the root of the potential problem. Since the entire fly-by shown above lasted less than 4 seconds, the horse would have been gone before the card writing completed."  Since it takes a brief but noticeable time for IS to shut off, and a card write after a burst can take several seconds, I could see this being an issue when shooting with the lens. 

Be careful, folks!  Also, if true it could be a real hassle for lens rental businesses... 
« Last Edit: June 24, 2013, 09:36:53 AM by neuroanatomist »
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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2013, 10:14:08 AM »
Its funny how much is raved about this undoubtly fine lens.

Compare the price of a 300 4.0 and 300 2.8 or (50-)500 5.6 and 500 4.0. Its about a factor 5 at least.

if one stop of aperture doesnt matter, then no fast primes would be sold. for me, i would hardly trade one stop of light for a 2x zoom, better pair a 300 2.8 with a 2nd body with a 70-200 2.8, or trade another stop (if trade 1 why not trade 2) for even mor flexibility and weight and price (100-400).

400 4.0 vs 300 2.8 may look like less reach, but one stop ISO to compensate for the less opening reduces detail as well and may compensate for some cropping.

pj1974

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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2013, 10:46:36 AM »
A stellar lens, certainly.

One interesting (and concerning!) note from the review: "Canon does not advise shifting the extender into place until IS turns off and all memory card writing ceases. The Canon rep I talked to strongly advised against doing this and suggested that a service visit may be required of a lens that has been used in this way. Apparently electronics are at the root of the potential problem. Since the entire fly-by shown above lasted less than 4 seconds, the horse would have been gone before the card writing completed."  Since it takes a brief but noticeable time for IS to shut off, and a card write after a burst can take several seconds, I could see this being an issue when shooting with the lens. 

Be careful, folks!  Also, if true it could be a real hassle for lens rental businesses...

I've also just read Bryan's review of this lens on TDP - as usual, a finely written, detailed analysis!  What a super zoom! (Just when we've had the 'super moon'- I would have loved to take a photo of the moon this morning here in Adelaide, South Australia-  the moon was spectacular on my drive to work).

Neuro, I had the exact same thoughts as you.. and 'Woah.... that could cause some issues'!  Maybe that was part of the reason this lens has taken so long to come to market? (Canon were trying to work at overcoming this issue, potentially with electronics... but it didn't work?!)

The image quality of the 200-400mm f/4 1.4x L lens is superb - almost matching primes in many occasions. Certainly a lens I would love to use.. but doubt I'll be buying any time!  In the right hands, many great photos will be taken with these lenses, I'm sure!

Regards

Paul
I'm not a brand-fanatic. What I do appreciate is using my 7D and 350D cameras along with a host of lenses & many accessories to capture quality photos, and share with friends.

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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2013, 11:26:41 AM »
Having just returned from a 2 week safari almost exclusively using this lens, I can report that I had zero issues.  I was not aware of needing to wait for all memory card writing to stop and, therefore, may have inadvertenly shifted the extender into or out of place while memory card writing was occuring. 

The lens performed splendedly.  I could not have hoped for more.  I'm still sorting through about 4,000 photos and am VERY pleased with the performance and versatility of this lens.

LuCoOc

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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2013, 11:31:16 AM »
Excellent review. If I can ever convince myself to buy a big white, this will most likely be the one!
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expatinasia

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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2013, 09:16:21 PM »
Excellent review as always from TDP (though on this occasion he could do with self-editing it slightly in places).

His summary is also what I expected, and confirms what CPS told me when I asked whether I should stick with the 400 f/2.8 ii or get this new one.
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Re: EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x Review from TDP
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2013, 09:16:21 PM »