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Author Topic: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x  (Read 10278 times)

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Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« on: November 13, 2013, 11:11:29 AM »
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Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« on: November 13, 2013, 11:11:29 AM »

Chosenbydestiny

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2013, 11:25:41 AM »
The link is broken, I think.
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mackguyver

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2013, 01:02:29 PM »
The link is broken, I think.
Try this one:
http://www.canonrumors.com/reviews/review-canon-ef-200-400-f4l-is-1-4x/

I found it to be another interesting review, sort of like the one he did for the 300mm.  Obviously Justin isn't the core user of this type of lens, so that gives his review a different angle than one from a sports or wildlife shooter.
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Jackson_Bill

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2013, 01:24:24 PM »
I agree with Justin's comment about not everything having to be an up-tight on the nose shot and there are times when my 500 is too big. But on the other hand, the MTF chart doesn't compare to the 400 2.8 II.

JVLphoto

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2013, 01:25:15 PM »
The link is broken, I think.
Try this one:
http://www.canonrumors.com/reviews/review-canon-ef-200-400-f4l-is-1-4x/

I found it to be another interesting review, sort of like the one he did for the 300mm.  Obviously Justin isn't the core user of this type of lens, so that gives his review a different angle than one from a sports or wildlife shooter.

True story, and thanks, I did find more use for this since I had my experience with the 300 and when it comes to certain quantitative needs, anyone who can *afford* a $13,000 lens just kind of needs to know if it will get the job done well. A resounding hell yeah.

JVLphoto

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2013, 01:26:57 PM »
I agree with Justin's comment about not everything having to be an up-tight on the nose shot and there are times when my 500 is too big. But on the other hand, the MTF chart doesn't compare to the 400 2.8 II.

Totally, but comparing a prime to a zoom rarely works in the favour of the zoom does it?  ;)

Eldar

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2013, 01:53:00 PM »
Having played with this lens now for a few weeks and seen what kind of results it is producing, it is clear that you have to be a serious pixel peeper to find anything to put your finger on. I had the 400 f2.8L IS II, which I sold when I bought this one, and it is a phenomenal lens. It might be that AF was a fraction of a second faster and the images a fraction sharper, but in a blind test, I don´t believe I could tell them apart. The quality, as far as I can tell, is pretty consistent from 200 all the way to 560 and I love its versatility. Yes, it´s rather big and heavy, but if you struggle with a 600mm f4L w. extender for a while, it is actually quite handy ;)

I am using a monopod and a flag bandoleer (used to be a boy scout) when I handhold and that is a brilliant solution. It takes away all weight (and tremble) issues. I´ll post images of this setup when I get the time to shoot some.

The only question I have had is a bokeh phenomena, where some bubbles in a lake looked strange (you´ll find it here: http://www.canonrumors.com/forum/index.php?topic=17632.msg325965#msg325965 )
A lot of you guys have much more expertise than me in judging this, so comments would be appreciated.
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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2013, 01:53:00 PM »

Jackson_Bill

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2013, 02:32:47 PM »
...
I am using a monopod and a flag bandoleer (used to be a boy scout) when I handhold and that is a brilliant solution. It takes away all weight (and tremble) issues. I´ll post images of this setup when I get the time to shoot some.

So you tie (or clip, maybe?) the monopod off to a strap you wear across your chest? That sounds like a really slick idea - I'll look forward to your post of the setup.

neuroanatomist

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #8 on: November 13, 2013, 02:42:33 PM »
...
I am using a monopod and a flag bandoleer (used to be a boy scout) when I handhold and that is a brilliant solution. It takes away all weight (and tremble) issues. I´ll post images of this setup when I get the time to shoot some.

So you tie (or clip, maybe?) the monopod off to a strap you wear across your chest? That sounds like a really slick idea - I'll look forward to your post of the setup.

Manfrotto makes a monopod belt pouch - at first glance, you might wonder how it holds the monopod while you walk…then you realize, it's not intended to hold the monopod while not in use (incidentally, I use a Maxpedition universal flashlight/baton sheath for that), it's a pocket for the base/foot of the retracted monopod to rest in, while you're actually shooting with the camera+lens supported by the belt.
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Eldar

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2013, 03:03:42 PM »
Here are a couple of images with the 1DX and the 600 f4L IS II.

Just get in touch with a flag producer. They should have it. An easier option would be to just have the cup on your belt. But I believe I get better weight distribution with the shoulder straps. I can walk around with this for a long time without having any trouble. To shoot overhead I only have to adjust the monopod. The RRS tilt head is essential though.

I have experimented with straps from the lens to the shoulder straps, to keep it stable while I operate a second body, but that has not been really successful yet.
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mackguyver

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2013, 03:46:24 PM »
True story, and thanks, I did find more use for this since I had my experience with the 300 and when it comes to certain quantitative needs, anyone who can *afford* a $13,000 lens just kind of needs to know if it will get the job done well. A resounding hell yeah.
I'm sure the zoom is a lot more versatile, but I went with the 300 2.8 IS II over the 200-400 because I didn't feel that changing extenders was as big an inconvenience as the size & weight of the zoom.  Portability and the ability to hand hold, which I do 99% of the time with the 300 was more important to me.  Also, I already had the extenders and the cost difference was too much to ignore.  Then again, my income isn't solely dependent on my photography and missing a shot will hurt my pride more than my wallet.  I'm sure the zoom is a phenomenal lens and if you're considering it over a combination of primes, it's certainly a better deal as you said in your article.

Keep up the great work on the reviews - as I said, I really like your take on lenses being so different than just about every other reviewer. 
« Last Edit: November 13, 2013, 07:46:31 PM by mackguyver »
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Jackson_Bill

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2013, 06:20:38 PM »
Thanks to both Neuro and Eldar!

winglet

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2013, 09:00:27 AM »
I enjoyed the review, thanks! I've got this lens on order and am pretty excited to use it.

A direct comparison is really hard to do, given so many variables. It can't really even be compared straight across to the primes, in that they're used so differently. Having said that though, the mention of it replacing several focal lengths and the associated cost savings neglects the fact too, that in order to have the use of more than one focal length you would also need to own (and carry!) at least one other body. To go from switching bodies to twisting the zoom, at these focal lengths...such luxury. With the price to match, unfortunately.

But I think it will be absolutely perfect for my main uses: air shows, outdoor sports, and large wildlife. And I can't wait for the horse racing season here in Dubai!
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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2013, 09:00:27 AM »

JVLphoto

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2013, 09:01:49 AM »
I enjoyed the review, thanks! I've got this lens on order and am pretty excited to use it.

A direct comparison is really hard to do, given so many variables. It can't really even be compared straight across to the primes, in that they're used so differently. Having said that though, the mention of it replacing several focal lengths and the associated cost savings neglects the fact too, that in order to have the use of more than one focal length you would also need to own (and carry!) at least one other body. To go from switching bodies to twisting the zoom, at these focal lengths...such luxury. With the price to match, unfortunately.

But I think it will be absolutely perfect for my main uses: air shows, outdoor sports, and large wildlife. And I can't wait for the horse racing season here in Dubai!

And I'm looking forward to seeing your photos!

revup67

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2013, 03:16:16 PM »
In this article the author (Justin VanLeeuwen) states in sentence 3: 

"...as well as the 8-15mm f/3.5 L Fisheye zoom which was unheard of.."

I believe this should be F4, not F 3.5. Anyone know of a 3.5?

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Re: Review - Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS 1.4x
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2013, 03:16:16 PM »