February 21, 2018, 08:40:32 AM

Author Topic: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS  (Read 2706 times)

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We all remember the 2015 Canon EXPO, and that glorious looking prototype for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS on display. What Canon didn’t tell us is when it was going to be added to the EF lens lineup.

There have been mentions that “this is the year” a few times over the last couple of years, and we have been guilty of writing that a couple of times.

We have been asking a lot over the last few months about the prospects of the EF 600mm f/4 DO IS coming in 2018, and we’re sad to say, the prospects don’t look good. We’re told that an official announcement isn’t expected this year.

There is always a possibility of a development announcement at Photokina, but I don’t believe we’ve ever heard about a development announcement from Canon before they do the announcing.

« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 05:43:42 PM by Canon Rumors »
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tiggy@mac.com

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2018, 12:27:18 PM »
Speculations as to why a working lens seen in 2015 isn't released when it's apparently the most desired lens in the world:
1) DO IQ is a step back from the f/4.0 L II
2) Cost of its manufacture causes it to be less profitable than the L II, and the market can't bear higher cost
3) There is new tech Canon is developing that it wants to pair with it
4) Canon anticipates crazy demand, and it's growing fluorite crystals as fast as it can, but doesn't anticipate having enough for more than a year

Of the above reasons, #2 seems most likely, as the other three don't seem quite good enough reasons to hold back.

xps

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2018, 12:28:37 PM »
I wonder what we will see at Photokina.
I was sure, the 600mm DO BR would have been the "eyecatcher" and star of the Canon show.
So, another invention will take its place.
 ;D We can dream of an FF MLS or an 5DSR II... Or Or or
(I hope nor just am 7DIII)

If the 600 DO BR is as good as the 400mm DO II, it might be as sharp as the original 600 II.
I owned the 400 DO I and was not pleased. But used the II for some weeks before I decided to buy the 300mm II (for more narrow shots). And I saw the big step upwards.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2018, 12:32:03 PM by xps »

NancyP

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2018, 12:39:43 PM »
I have been curious about this lens for a while - still haven't bought a Big White, still using my "toy lens" 400 f/5.6L, now wondering if I should break down and get the 500II.

tiggy@mac.com

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2018, 12:47:38 PM »
I have been curious about this lens for a while - still haven't bought a Big White, still using my "toy lens" 400 f/5.6L, now wondering if I should break down and get the 500II.

That is precisely what I did. Loving it.

Talys

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2018, 01:45:44 PM »

2) Cost of its manufacture causes it to be less profitable than the L II, and the market can't bear higher cost


I don't think so.  The demand would be so high that if image quality were even slightly below the current 600/4, Canon could charge a ridiculous price and still have constrained supplies.

aceflibble

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2018, 01:48:07 PM »
I have been curious about this lens for a while - still haven't bought a Big White, still using my "toy lens" 400 f/5.6L, now wondering if I should break down and get the 500II.
Even with the diffractive optic formula, a 600mm f/4 is going to be big, and while DO keeps the outside size down a little, it doesn't particularly help with the weight.

Going from the 400mm f/5.6 to the 500mm f/4 is already quite a jump in handling. Going up again to 600mm f/4 DO should be, if the other DO lenses are anything to go by, at least another +30% weight and +20% size over the 500mm, if not more.

As someone who uses the "big whites" often for work but also still keeps the 400mm f/5.6 to hand for hobby shooting, I feel it's important to stress that these lenses aren't a flat, linear upgrade path. It's not as simple as 600 4 > 500 4 > 400 5.6 and none of them are a replacement for the other. If the 500mm is the one you've been wanting, stick with getting the 500. Wanting the 500 but buying a 600 is like wanting a 50mm but buying an 85; it's that kind of jump in framing, as well as size.

Wait and get the 600mm if you shoot from a tripod already. That jump in bulk and the significantly higher difficulty in framing anything which isn't perfectly motionless won't matter on a tripod, so sure, go for the biggest. Also go for the 600mm if you want to always have the tightest framing and flattest perspective possible; 500 to 600 may only be 100mm on paper but in practice it feels like you're working with two thirds the view.
Get the 500mm if you want to be able to shoot handheld, even if only occasionally. Doesn't matter how big and strong you may be, 600mm wears you down quickly; 500mm is far easier. It's also easier to transport, and a DO version of the 600mm is unlikely to change that distinction. The field of view is also much better if you need any kind of versatility. For what it's worth, BBC production keeps many copies of the 500mm f/4L IS II on hand, but only two 600mm f/4s are kept in-house and if more are needed they're rented, purely because the 500mm framing is so much more useful for broadcast.

Keep hold of the 400mm 5.6 regardless of what else you buy, 'cause I promise you, even if you had the 600m f/4 DO, 500mm f/4 II, 400mm f/4 DO, and the 200-400, there will still be times where you'll be very thankful for the ease of the 400 5.6.

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2018, 01:48:07 PM »

hne

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2018, 02:29:21 PM »
Speculations as to why a working lens seen in 2015 isn't released when it's apparently the most desired lens in the world:
1) DO IQ is a step back from the f/4.0 L II
2) Cost of its manufacture causes it to be less profitable than the L II, and the market can't bear higher cost
3) There is new tech Canon is developing that it wants to pair with it
4) Canon anticipates crazy demand, and it's growing fluorite crystals as fast as it can, but doesn't anticipate having enough for more than a year

Of the above reasons, #2 seems most likely, as the other three don't seem quite good enough reasons to hold back.

How about #5: A working prototype was hand built and shown to the world as soon as the first plans for setting up a production line were on paper, but getting that line running for the humongous DO lens proved harder than anticipated.

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tiggy@mac.com

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2018, 03:22:16 PM »

I think this #5 might be the most likely. Especially if they were building out a new production line in a new facility (they've been doing that sort of thing). The lens might be pushed back along with the inevitable construction/tooling delays. This is also the most optimistic suggestion, as it implies that there is effort to get it going as soon as possible, versus one of the reasons where Canon concluded it wasn't in its interests to release.

Speculations as to why a working lens seen in 2015 isn't released when it's apparently the most desired lens in the world:
1) DO IQ is a step back from the f/4.0 L II
2) Cost of its manufacture causes it to be less profitable than the L II, and the market can't bear higher cost
3) There is new tech Canon is developing that it wants to pair with it
4) Canon anticipates crazy demand, and it's growing fluorite crystals as fast as it can, but doesn't anticipate having enough for more than a year

Of the above reasons, #2 seems most likely, as the other three don't seem quite good enough reasons to hold back.

How about #5: A working prototype was hand built and shown to the world as soon as the first plans for setting up a production line were on paper, but getting that line running for the humongous DO lens proved harder than anticipated.

Last 2% often take 50% of the time.

Graphic.Artifacts

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2018, 04:21:59 PM »
Cool. That thing was going to crush the resale value of my 600 II and I’m not sure how much real benefit it was going to bring relative to likely compromises in IQ.

BeenThere

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2018, 04:35:55 PM »
Has anyone spotted any new lenses at the Olympics?  👀

FramerMCB

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2018, 05:43:30 PM »
Has anyone spotted any new lenses at the Olympics?  👀

A new Sony OSS 400mm - all taped over on it's body so one can't see any markings, switches, etc. A fuzzy picture of it mounted on a tripod with a Sony A99 or A9 attached to it and over the shoulder of a photographer has been posted at DPReview...    :P
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Talys

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 07:22:59 PM »
Has anyone spotted any new lenses at the Olympics?  👀

A new Sony OSS 400mm - all taped over on it's body so one can't see any markings, switches, etc. A fuzzy picture of it mounted on a tripod with a Sony A99 or A9 attached to it and over the shoulder of a photographer has been posted at DPReview...    :P

400 f2.8, on top of that.  Impressive!

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 07:22:59 PM »

Phil995511

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #13 on: February 15, 2018, 03:35:22 AM »
It is regrettable that this goal announced for the first time as to be disopnible in 2017 is still not officially announced !!

Using extremely heavy lenses like the current range of 500mm to 800mm, on tripod, is indeed not to everyone's taste.

Animal photography enthusiasts during trekking and journalistic photographers need lighter material than we are currently offered.

I think a 600mm DO would be a great success with the public.. Many women and men photographers told me that they are very interested in such an acquisition

I'm happy with my CANON EF 400mm F/4 DO IS II USM, but using it at 800mm F8 with a focal doubler creates light exposure difficulties in many cases. A focal length of 600mm is the "minimum" for use in wildlife photography.

So I look forward to the release of this 600mm DO hoping it arrives before 2050 ...Canon disappoints me unfortunately once again.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 03:48:06 AM by Phil995511 »
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AlanF

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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2018, 06:53:11 AM »

A focal length of 600mm is the "minimum" for use in wildlife photography.


It depends on the wild life you are shooting and the body. I see you use a 5DIV. On a crop or 5DSR you get the similar resolution with 400mm as a 500-600mm on 5DIV. Last year on a Puffin shoot I used a 400mm on a 5DIV and got shot after shot of Puffins in flight close by but the guys with larger lenses on tripods didn't get any because they had a narrower field of view and couldn't turn their lenses fast enough. For me, but not necessarily for everyone, the 400/560/800mm is the best compromise of weight, hand holding, and size for taking on small planes etc.

I see quite a few 500mm f/4 being used in hides, and a bird guide I know uses one with a Manfrotto monopod, and I would quite like one for occasions when there was little walking and for perched birds. I leave the 600mms to young neuro who has the strength.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 06:56:26 AM by AlanF »
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Re: We're Going to be Waiting a While Longer for the Canon EF 600mm f/4 DO IS
« Reply #14 on: February 15, 2018, 06:53:11 AM »