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Author Topic: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM  (Read 46481 times)

Gilbo65

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #45 on: May 31, 2016, 12:30:50 PM »
There are times I think of selling my EF400 - just on the basis of age and lack of technology in the form of IS. I have IS on most of my lens, and i think it has a real advantage and sometimes a "placebo effect" too..

Had a day out in a nature reserve yesterday, and was mobile. The 400mm f/5.6 was the lens in use, and i'm always shocked at the results in terms of clarity.

Was framing a static shot in a dark pool, when a kingfisher came in. 1/400 isn't ideal for a hand-held shot of such a subject, but got a high percentage of keepers.

Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) through the gap. by gilbo65, on Flickr

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #45 on: May 31, 2016, 12:30:50 PM »

adamfilip

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #46 on: July 09, 2016, 12:12:36 AM »
Great lens.

nc0b

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #47 on: July 09, 2016, 02:57:23 AM »
In respect to using the 1.4X TC III, I am quite happy with it on a 100-400mm II and a 5DsR.  On the other hand, there is noticeable chromatic aberration with the TC and the 400mm f/5.6 and the 5DsR.  If I am shooting BIF I don't add the TC with the prime and always set the focus limit to 8.5 meters.  For general usage, wild life in particular, the extra reach of the zoom and TC is a reasonable trade off.
5DsR, 6D, 60D & 40D. 400 f/5.6, 100-400 IS II, 70-200 f/2.8 IS II & f/4 IS, 85 f/1.8, 50 f/2.5, 24-105 f/4, 15-85 f/4-5.6 & 16-35 f/4.

mb66energy

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #48 on: July 09, 2016, 04:20:04 AM »
The amazing thing is that the 22 year old EF 400 f/5.6L holds its own with 7 elements/6 groups/2 special elements (ED)/1.25 kg versus the 1 year old EF 100-400 v.II L IS with 21 elements/16 groups/2 special elements (1 fluorite, 1 ED)/1.59 kg.

The 7 elements/6 groups are one reason why this lens performs very well in the IQ land: very high "reproduction fidelity" without "tricks" resulting in great texture reproduction. Think about a 5.6/400 with IS (e.g. only two additional elements for that) with updated coatings and perhaps glass mixtures ...
Most used tools: EOS 200D + EF-S 60mm + 4.0 / 70-200 IS AND/OR EOS 5D i  + 4.0 70-200 IS + 2.8 100 Macro

Don Haines

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #49 on: July 09, 2016, 08:21:27 AM »
The amazing thing is that the 22 year old EF 400 f/5.6L holds its own with 7 elements/6 groups/2 special elements (ED)/1.25 kg versus the 1 year old EF 100-400 v.II L IS with 21 elements/16 groups/2 special elements (1 fluorite, 1 ED)/1.59 kg.

The 7 elements/6 groups are one reason why this lens performs very well in the IQ land: very high "reproduction fidelity" without "tricks" resulting in great texture reproduction. Think about a 5.6/400 with IS (e.g. only two additional elements for that) with updated coatings and perhaps glass mixtures ...
When designing a zoom lens, compromises have to be made with the design in order to cover the zoom range. The wider the range, the more compromises.... That's why most high quality zoom lenses have a 3X zoom ratio or less, make it bigger and you make it unacceptably softer.

With a prime lens, they design for one focal length and that allows them to build a sharper lens. It also means that there is no zoom mechanism, and that means simpler and more accurate alignment. With a long lens, that also means that the light is not bent as sharply, and that also makes the design easier.

The result is, that given the same level of materials, design, and machining, that a prime lens will always be optically superior to a zoom lens. The 100-400 is a great lens, but it does not approach the insane levels of sharpness of the version 2 "big white" primes, and that's the level one would expect an updated 400F5.6 to achieve.
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Click

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #50 on: July 09, 2016, 09:19:22 AM »
Great lens.

Very nice pictures. I especially like the 3rd one.

Badri

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #51 on: July 09, 2016, 11:23:29 AM »
This is a super sharp lens! Used it for just one wildlife trip and came back with more memorable pics that I did in the past 10. Much sharper than the 100-400 V1 and a bit sharper than the V2 too. Not able to post pics here at this moment ( maybe because I'm a newbie)
« Last Edit: July 09, 2016, 11:36:51 AM by Badri »

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #51 on: July 09, 2016, 11:23:29 AM »

AdamBotond

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #52 on: July 09, 2016, 02:43:42 PM »
Well said, truly wonderful lens. If you are on a tight budget, or just need a lightweight super telephoto, this is the best lens in my opinion. This is my wildlife telephoto to go to. While it not too fast at 5.6, it has a fairly nice bokeh, it is dead sharp wide open from corner to corner with minimal CA. Stoppping down makes it even sharper, though you don't have to do so to gain more sharpness as it is tack sharp wide open already. Its advantage due to weight isnt't really appreciated until you take a faster, bigger alternative (400 2.8, 500 4, etc) to the field for longer period.

Sure, it lacks IS, but I can live with that. Serious wildlife photographers use tripods and faster shutter speeds to stop motion anyway, so lacking IS is not deal breaker most of the time, not for me at least.  On the other hand, I don't really see Canon upgrading this lens as they offer so many alternatives (at much higher price).

Here's a roe deer at 5.6 with a 100% crop, plus some other deer pics. Can't get much sharper than that. Highly recommended.
Canon EOS 1D X, Canon EF 16-35 F4 L IS USM, Canon EF 24-70 F2.8 L USM, Canon 70-200 F4 L IS USM, Canon EF 100 F2.8 L IS USM Macro, Canon EF 400 F5.6 L USM, Canon EF 400 F4 DO IS II USM, Canon Extender EF 2X III, Canon Speedlite 600 EX RT (2x)

Don Haines

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #53 on: July 09, 2016, 04:01:00 PM »
This is a super sharp lens! Used it for just one wildlife trip and came back with more memorable pics that I did in the past 10. Much sharper than the 100-400 V1 and a bit sharper than the V2 too. Not able to post pics here at this moment ( maybe because I'm a newbie)
Welcome to the forum!

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« Last Edit: July 09, 2016, 04:03:08 PM by Don Haines »
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markg

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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #54 on: July 10, 2016, 04:19:15 PM »
F35B Hovering @RIAT 2016 - Canon 7D + 400m f5.6


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Re: Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM
« Reply #54 on: July 10, 2016, 04:19:15 PM »