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Author Topic: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?  (Read 1786 times)

gshocked

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Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« on: March 03, 2014, 07:41:14 AM »
Hi all,

I'm keen in purchasing a prime Tele on a budget. I've been looking at the Canon 300mm f4L for sports but not sure if I should wait? Is there a rumored replacement coming out for this lens? I hopping the new one is weather sealed...

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Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« on: March 03, 2014, 07:41:14 AM »

danski0224

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2014, 08:14:29 AM »
If you need one now... :)

If you don't need one now... ;)

If you buy one and sell it later, the difference can be looked upon as a lens rental.
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2014, 09:21:38 AM »
If you mean the 300mm f/4L, it's already been replaced…by the 300mm f/4L IS.  That happened back in 1997.   ;)

The 300/4L IS is an old design, but primes aren't updated very often in today's zoom-preferring market, particularly at the 'consumer' level.  I'd expect we'll see an updated 100-400L before we see an updated 300/4L IS (and we may see pigs flying over snowbanks in hell before we see an updated 100-400L!).

You might consider a used 300/4L IS, or if you are shooting sports in daytime, the 70-300L offers better IQ at 300mm, although it's f/5.6.
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9VIII

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2014, 01:59:38 PM »
Some thoughts.

The 300f4 is bigger, but it has that sweet lens hood, and the maximum magnification is actually nice for getting flowers and other small things on the occasional nature walk, and f4 may be especially useful in sports since you're often scraping for every bit of light you can get with fast action.
The 70-300 will be easier to lug around (besides fiddling with the hood), has a very useful range of focal lengths (good for sidelines and end field), and is weather sealed.

I would chose based on lighting first, if you're often shooting at dusk that extra stop of light should come in handy, you can always throw a bag over your lens if it's raining, in which case you're probably going to want the extra light gathering that much more anyway.
If I wanted to do more than just sports and wildlife, I'd probably take the zoom.

I've read that the 300f4LIS and 400f5.6L are weather sealed except for the mount.
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1030847

Quote
The 300 f/4 L IS is a partially weather sealed lens. A lens mount gasket is not present, but the switches and focusing ring have moderate dust and moisture resistance. A front filter should be used for sealing purposes.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-300mm-f-4.0-L-IS-USM-Lens-Review.aspx
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mackguyver

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2014, 02:24:03 PM »
Some thoughts.

The 300f4 is bigger, but it has that sweet lens hood
I'll post my standard warning on all of the Canon built-in lens hood lens posts - it's all great and convenient until it's dented or otherwise damaged and Canon charges you $400+ to replace the hood.  I learned the hard way, twice.
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wickidwombat

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2014, 06:52:55 PM »
Some thoughts.

The 300f4 is bigger, but it has that sweet lens hood
I'll post my standard warning on all of the Canon built-in lens hood lens posts - it's all great and convenient until it's dented or otherwise damaged and Canon charges you $400+ to replace the hood.  I learned the hard way, twice.

ah i was wondering why they stopped doing this which i thought was a great invention!

anyway its a fantastic lens well balanced and very nice optically
the IS is very old noisy and clunky so don't think its broken when the IS makes a clunk sound when engaging
it even works ok with the 2x TC on 1D or 5Dmk3 bodies at f8 but its AF is very slow and will struggle to track anything
fast the focus limit switch helps

but honestly since getting the tamron 150-600 i am considering selling mine.... :o it wasnt a highly used lens for me anyway and often i would find 300 to short so was using a 1.4 or 2x tc with it

about the only thing the tamron doesnt have over this lens is f4 and the tamron is alot bigger and more bulky but its beats the pants off the 2x tc combo and its a zoom

on a 5D body the 300 f4L IS is a superbly well balanced lens and very easy to shoot with all day
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gshocked

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2014, 02:01:00 AM »
If you mean the 300mm f/4L, it's already been replaced…by the 300mm f/4L IS.  That happened back in 1997.   ;)

The 300/4L IS is an old design, but primes aren't updated very often in today's zoom-preferring market, particularly at the 'consumer' level.  I'd expect we'll see an updated 100-400L before we see an updated 300/4L IS (and we may see pigs flying over snowbanks in hell before we see an updated 100-400L!).

You might consider a used 300/4L IS, or if you are shooting sports in daytime, the 70-300L offers better IQ at 300mm, although it's f/5.6.


Hi,

Yes I'm looking at the 300mm f4L IS.

AND thanks to Macguyver: that's crazy expensive to get the hood replaced... I've always thought you can take it off..

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2014, 02:01:00 AM »

StudentOfLight

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2014, 05:04:34 AM »
You might consider a used 300/4L IS, or if you are shooting sports in daytime, the 70-300L offers better IQ at 300mm, although it's f/5.6.

I'm intrigued by your comment. What do you mean by better IQ? If you shoot at both at 300mm f/5.6 then the prime has: Sharper corner detail, Less Distortion, Less CA, Less Vignette.
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=738&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=4&API=0&LensComp=111&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=2

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gshocked

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2014, 06:03:46 AM »
You might consider a used 300/4L IS, or if you are shooting sports in daytime, the 70-300L offers better IQ at 300mm, although it's f/5.6.

I'm intrigued by your comment. What do you mean by better IQ? If you shoot at both at 300mm f/5.6 then the prime has: Sharper corner detail, Less Distortion, Less CA, Less Vignette.
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=738&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=4&API=0&LensComp=111&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=2


+1

I would have expected the 300mm f4L IS to have better IQ?

wickidwombat

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2014, 07:41:59 AM »
You might consider a used 300/4L IS, or if you are shooting sports in daytime, the 70-300L offers better IQ at 300mm, although it's f/5.6.

I'm intrigued by your comment. What do you mean by better IQ? If you shoot at both at 300mm f/5.6 then the prime has: Sharper corner detail, Less Distortion, Less CA, Less Vignette.
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=738&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=4&API=0&LensComp=111&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=2


+1

I would have expected the 300mm f4L IS to have better IQ?


its an older lens so coatings are not as good as the new generation that said it is still a great lens even wide open at f4 so it still has a full stop advantage on the 70-300 plus with a 1.4 tc you get 420mm f5.6 with IS or the 2x tc 600 f8 on a 1D or 5Dmk3 but the AF is quite slow using the 2x TC
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chas1113

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2014, 09:41:13 PM »
My 300 f/4 L IS is as sharp at f/4 as my 70-300L wide open at f/5.6. Coatings or not, age or not, the 300 f/4 is a terrific lens for the money. I use the 70-300 on full frame and the 300 on a crop body with a TC when I am reach limited. Great combo together. Stop the zoom down to f/8 and it equals the 300/4 at f/5.6. Both lenses are keepers for me. The prime has better OOF than the zoom (especially with busy backgrounds), but otherwise the contrast/clarity/color of the two are pretty much comparable.
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mjbehnke

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2014, 08:29:14 PM »
Dumb question. If I buy the 2x convertor for my 300L f4 IS, it will become f8. Will a 60D center focus work or only the 5d3 and 1dx?

Thjanks in advance!
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expatinasia

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2014, 12:12:19 AM »
Doesn't something funny happen when you attach this lens to a tripod (maybe monopod too)? I seem to recall reading that it does not AF when attached or something.

I might be wrong though.
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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2014, 12:12:19 AM »

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2014, 12:38:24 AM »
Doesn't something funny happen when you attach this lens to a tripod (maybe monopod too)? I seem to recall reading that it does not AF when attached or something.

I might be wrong though.

Works great on a Tripod.  The older design IS is not tripod sensing, so unless you have a cheap tripod and are getting a lot of movement, the IS being turned on while the lens is on a tripod can be a problem.

expatinasia

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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2014, 12:42:44 AM »
Doesn't something funny happen when you attach this lens to a tripod (maybe monopod too)? I seem to recall reading that it does not AF when attached or something.

I might be wrong though.

Works great on a Tripod.  The older design IS is not tripod sensing, so unless you have a cheap tripod and are getting a lot of movement, the IS being turned on while the lens is on a tripod can be a problem.

Thanks, you are right.

It was on TDP I read this: "Keep in mind that the version of IS on this lens needs to be turned off when tripod-mounted. Not doing so may cause the image stabilizer to act erratically."
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Re: Canon 300mm f4 L lens: buy now or wait?
« Reply #14 on: March 18, 2014, 12:42:44 AM »