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Author Topic: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced  (Read 56261 times)

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Announced
« Reply #60 on: February 08, 2011, 07:23:04 AM »
So how exactly does "switching off the teleconverter" work?  That's the part that has me most intrigued.  You can't remove it, but you can turn it off?

If you look at a larger image of the lens, you can see a 'bump' behind the lug for the lens carrying strap, right under the switch for the internal extender.  That switch appears to be a small lever, which I presume swings the lens elements for the internal 1.4x extender out of the optical path and into that 'bump' when the extender is 'off'. 

I got my number by taking the 100-400, and adding 50%; but looking at the pricing of f/4L primes in that range, your numbers look more realistic.

A constant f/4 zoom is a whole different beast than a variable (f/4.5-5.6) zoom like the 100-400mm.  As others have stated, this new Canon lens is most similar to the Nikon 200-400mm f/4, which is 15" long, nearly 8 pounds, and costs $6800.  The Canon has a built-in TC, and that expensive white paint, meaning it will come in at least $1K more than the Nikon counterpart.

In my opinion a better option is to have the 70-200mm with a 2x extender which pretty much gives you a 100-400mm, although obviously not as sharp and the length (which is the major point of this discussion) etc then it is 2 lenses in one.

Ah, but it's not really two lenses in one.  First off, even the new 2x III has a noticeable negative impact on IQ of the 70-200 II.  Second, adding a teleconverter to a lens in the field is actually much more difficult than simply switching lenses (which I guess is one big reason Canon built it in to the new zoom).  IMO, the better bet is a 70-200mm zoom paired with a longer prime lens.  If Canon were to release a 400mm f/5.6L IS for around $1700 or a 500mm f/5.6L IS for under $2300, that would be a big seller, I think, and a great complement to the 70-200mm II.
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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Announced
« Reply #60 on: February 08, 2011, 07:23:04 AM »

Isurus

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Announced
« Reply #61 on: February 08, 2011, 07:44:07 AM »
Thanks for the link to the larger pic.  You can easily see how it will work from that.

I agree with your thoughts on the 70-200mm f2.8 IS L II and a long prime being a good alternative to this (and maybe preferred for that matter).  It will be interesting to see how this lens actually performs optically, as well as how fast and accurate the auto focus is.  For me the biggest advantage of the 400mm f5.6 prime over the 100-400 is auto focus speed and accuracy, especially when tracking BIF. 


So how exactly does "switching off the teleconverter" work?  That's the part that has me most intrigued.  You can't remove it, but you can turn it off?

If you look at a larger image of the lens, you can see a 'bump' behind the lug for the lens carrying strap, right under the switch for the internal extender.  That switch appears to be a small lever, which I presume swings the lens elements for the internal 1.4x extender out of the optical path and into that 'bump' when the extender is 'off'. 

I got my number by taking the 100-400, and adding 50%; but looking at the pricing of f/4L primes in that range, your numbers look more realistic.

A constant f/4 zoom is a whole different beast than a variable (f/4.5-5.6) zoom like the 100-400mm.  As others have stated, this new Canon lens is most similar to the Nikon 200-400mm f/4, which is 15" long, nearly 8 pounds, and costs $6800.  The Canon has a built-in TC, and that expensive white paint, meaning it will come in at least $1K more than the Nikon counterpart.

In my opinion a better option is to have the 70-200mm with a 2x extender which pretty much gives you a 100-400mm, although obviously not as sharp and the length (which is the major point of this discussion) etc then it is 2 lenses in one.

Ah, but it's not really two lenses in one.  First off, even the new 2x III has a noticeable negative impact on IQ of the 70-200 II.  Second, adding a teleconverter to a lens in the field is actually much more difficult than simply switching lenses (which I guess is one big reason Canon built it in to the new zoom).  IMO, the better bet is a 70-200mm zoom paired with a longer prime lens.  If Canon were to release a 400mm f/5.6L IS for around $1700 or a 500mm f/5.6L IS for under $2300, that would be a big seller, I think, and a great complement to the 70-200mm II.

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #62 on: February 08, 2011, 09:00:33 AM »
looks like there's a big switch on the side to turn the extender on and off.

That isn't a "switch" per se. It is a lever to move the actual 1.4x tele-extender lens group into play. I'll bet this lens also offers really good close focusing, as without the extender group, it would be very nice gap between the "normal" rear element position and the lens mount.

Quote
Looks like everyone is concerned about price and size of this promising new comer...

I know I am.

tomscott

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #63 on: February 08, 2011, 10:49:33 AM »
I do agree also, i was going to voice my opinion of a zoom and a prime. But i did explain the weight problem, i dont know if you have been out in a forrest or lake carrying both a large prime a tripod to mount it on, with a big zoom and a body, but it does add a fair amount of weight and can be awkward making sure all the kit is secure and by this time a shot could be missed. I dont think there is a perfect scenario, the 400 DO could solve this problem, lighter, smaller and used with a zoom. But they are very expensive and depends whether you like the Highlighted boeker.. i dont mind it myself, i did have the 70-300mm DO and i have to say it was one of my favorite lenses especially as it was so small! But i sold it to get a 70-200mm II i didn't feel the need to have the pair but wish i had kept it now, especially for travel photography.

Anyway, i live about a mile from lake Ullswater in the Lake District Cumbria, and i do alot of photography where i wade into the lake with lens attached to the tripod get a good base and wait. The birds then start to get used to you in their surroundings and come very close sometimes within 2-3ft. The nice thing about the zoom for me over a prime is compositionally its easier to frame and also they are alot easier to maneuver on the tripod without scaring birds away, also the tripod can be less bulky meaning moving creates less splashing and pain for me, especially after 6 or so hours of moving around. There are also steamers which cross the lake, and give large waves, having a bag attached can easily get the brunt of one of these waves which is why i generally only like to take one lens with me, means less likely for me to get the bag wet, also the primes are massive and heavy even to carry so in my situation having one lens would be much more preferable and being a zoom even better! Also if i lost one of the lenses though water damage it wouldn't be the end of the world whereas a 8k prime would literally kill me! but its the kind of photography i like and the risk to gear is worth it for the imagery. But not with those kind of monetary losses.
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Tim

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #64 on: February 08, 2011, 12:22:26 PM »

That isn't a "switch" per se. It is a lever to move the actual 1.4x tele-extender lens group into play. I'll bet this lens also offers really good close focusing, as without the extender group, it would be very nice gap between the "normal" rear element position and the lens mount.


That doesn't mean that it will necessarily have a reduced minimum object distance. A lot of video lenses with extenders still have MODs of 2-3 feet. Possibly the optics within built-in extenders differ from external extenders. But more likely, the lens is designed to form an image on the sensor from a longer mounting distance without the extender in place. That's what I really think is going on.

And my guess is $3999.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2011, 02:35:13 PM by Tim »

Pau

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #65 on: February 08, 2011, 02:43:39 PM »
Does anyone with good eyes dare to take a guess on the length of this lens based on its pictures? From there we might be able to estimate how much it weighs... and then maybe faint...

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #66 on: February 09, 2011, 01:44:24 PM »
I guess the closest thing to compare to is the Nikon 200-400 f/4 with a 1.4x extender added.

For the price that makes about $6500 + $500 = $7000

For the weight and size this makes

3.4kg + 0.2kg = 3.6 kg

366mm + 27mm = 393mm length

124mm diameter, given by the 400mm f/4 requirement. (The Canon 400mm f/4 DO is about the same diameter)
Obviously, f/4 goes down to f/5.6 with the extender in, as somebody already pointed out above.

These are just educated guesses. For the weight you loose a bit because there's two less lens mounts, but you gain a bit because of the mechanics to swing the extender in and out of the optical path

Note that the bulge for the extender is quite a bit further towards the front of the lens, compared to where it would be if it was the usual bolt-on extender. We can assume that the position has been optimized, so the performance should be better than an equivalent 200-400mm zoom with independent 1.4x extender. Plus you gain the ease of use of just flipping the extender in and out without having to dismount the lens, possibly in bad weather conditions.

This looks like a very nice piece of kit, even if the price will be comparable to the  500mm f/4 prime.

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #66 on: February 09, 2011, 01:44:24 PM »

Hulk

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #67 on: February 09, 2011, 06:12:36 PM »

Since I started out, I have used a crop sensor and I always want more reach, for wildlife and whatever I want to compose and I would rather not use the computer to crop too much. 

Just a precision : crop sensors don't give you more reach. They just crop the FF image that the lens delivers, and increase its dof.
A crop sensor only gives more reach if it has a higher pixel density than the FF sensor you compare it to, and you zoom into the image to crop it more.

To tell it differently, a future 45Mp 1Ds gives you exactly the same reach as a 7D whatever zoom factor you use on the picture. And any FF dslr gives you exactly the same reach as a 7D if you just crop the FF image by 1,6.

No big deal anyway.

Tim

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #68 on: February 09, 2011, 06:38:26 PM »
They just crop the FF image that the lens delivers, and increase its dof.

Depth of field remains the same. Angle of view changes because of the crop.

A 50mm lens with 6 inches DOF is a 50mm lens with 6 inches DOF, no matter if you put it on a 1Ds or an HV40. A lens is a lens is a lens. Depth-of-field is controlled by optics. Angle of view is the ONLY thing that changes between imaging formats. The difference is that on a FF sensor, more objects are now in view in the frame that are closer and farther away (blurrier objects appear in the frame), creating a higher contrast between the blurriest objects and the sharpest objects, which appears to create a shallower DOF when the DOF never changed.

studio1972

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #69 on: February 09, 2011, 07:00:58 PM »
They just crop the FF image that the lens delivers, and increase its dof.

Depth of field remains the same. Angle of view changes because of the crop.

A 50mm lens with 6 inches DOF is a 50mm lens with 6 inches DOF, no matter if you put it on a 1Ds or an HV40. A lens is a lens is a lens. Depth-of-field is controlled by optics. Angle of view is the ONLY thing that changes between imaging formats. The difference is that on a FF sensor, more objects are now in view in the frame that are closer and farther away (blurrier objects appear in the frame), creating a higher contrast between the blurriest objects and the sharpest objects, which appears to create a shallower DOF when the DOF never changed.

Actually you're both wrong. If the 2 images were viewed at 100% on screen then the DOF would be the same, as stated, assuming the pixel density is the same. However, if the images were printed or scaled to the same size, say 12 x 8, then the DOF would be less on the cropped image as the lack of focus would be amplified by zooming into the image. DOF is very dependant on the medium on which the image is displayed.
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Hulk

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #70 on: February 09, 2011, 07:34:23 PM »
Interesting discussion about dof.

Dof is a factor of focal length, aperture, focus distance and sensor size. If you change only sensor size, you change dof, even with equal pixel density.

See there for more details : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Depth_of_field

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #71 on: February 10, 2011, 07:46:03 AM »
Sounds like there are a lot of people trapped within the Circle of Confusion surrounding DoF.   ::)

To put it into practical terms, yes, sensor size affects DoF.  The effect can be phrased differently, though.  The common viewpoint is that a larger sensor means shallower DoF - that's true if and only if you're talking about a shot with the same framing, i.e. to compensate for the narrower angle of view with a crop sensor, you move further from the subject to maintain framing, so the increased subject distance means deeper DoF with the crop sensor (and the perspective is different, too, but that's another discussion).   However, if you keep the camera-to-subject distance constant, the DoF with the crop sensor is actually shallower than with a FF sensor, because the CoC of a crop sensor is smaller.
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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L Review up on The Digital Picture
« Reply #72 on: February 10, 2011, 01:22:45 PM »
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-200-400mm-f-4-L-IS-USM-Extender-1.4x-Lens-Review.aspx

Just a thoughtful analysis of what the lens is likely to be, nothing firm or certain, but from a lens expert.

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L Review up on The Digital Picture
« Reply #72 on: February 10, 2011, 01:22:45 PM »

Hulk

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS Development Announced
« Reply #73 on: February 10, 2011, 04:13:42 PM »
Sounds like there are a lot of people trapped within the Circle of Confusion surrounding DoF.   ::)

To put it into practical terms, yes, sensor size affects DoF.  The effect can be phrased differently, though.  The common viewpoint is that a larger sensor means shallower DoF - that's true if and only if you're talking about a shot with the same framing, i.e. to compensate for the narrower angle of view with a crop sensor, you move further from the subject to maintain framing, so the increased subject distance means deeper DoF with the crop sensor (and the perspective is different, too, but that's another discussion).   However, if you keep the camera-to-subject distance constant, the DoF with the crop sensor is actually shallower than with a FF sensor, because the CoC of a crop sensor is smaller.

Agree with your first statement, but not completely with the second. If you stay at the same distance, but use a different focal length to get the same image, the smaller sensor will have deeper dof and less blur. That's common field experience I think.

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L Review up on The Digital Picture
« Reply #74 on: February 10, 2011, 09:57:55 PM »
+$1200 for an extender doesn't seem like an educated guess to me. I love Bryan's site. And I read his guessview earlier, but I got to say that Canon would be much better off if they really want to sell these in volume not going stratospheric with the price. <$6800 would make this a competitive lens. The Nikon equivalent lens was selling for 6k not long ago.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-200-400mm-f-4-L-IS-USM-Extender-1.4x-Lens-Review.aspx

Just a thoughtful analysis of what the lens is likely to be, nothing firm or certain, but from a lens expert.

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Re: Canon EF 200-400 f/4L Review up on The Digital Picture
« Reply #74 on: February 10, 2011, 09:57:55 PM »