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Author Topic: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?  (Read 12434 times)

tomscott

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #15 on: May 31, 2012, 07:46:33 AM »
Just remember than converters make the AF slower.

Better off getting the 100-400 than the 300mm F4 and buying a 1.4x to stick to it most of the time.

The 100-400mm is cheaper than a 300mm +1.4x, more versatile and will be quicker to focus at 400mm the extra 20mm will not make any difference.
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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #15 on: May 31, 2012, 07:46:33 AM »

Forceflow

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #16 on: May 31, 2012, 08:48:38 AM »
Does the Sigma 120-300 take the Canon teleconverters? I like the look of this lens. Right now, my Canon 300 f4 IS lives on my 7D as the equipment I use for maximum reach. I also use the 1.4 II TC when I need more reach. It's pretty good, especially with good light. This is one of the cheapest ways to get this type of reach and still maintain decent quality. 420mm at 5.6 in a decent size package.

There is also the Sigma 150-500 to consider.

I hope you like the weight of it as well! It comes to 2950g or 104oz. One of the reasons why I chose against it. I find the 100-400 already on the heavy side. (And that one doesn't even weigh half)
Else it is indeed supposed to be a very good lens. And it is compatible with Sigma converters so I would assume it also takes Canon converters. (I see no reason why it shouldn't)
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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #17 on: May 31, 2012, 10:27:41 AM »
Does the Sigma 120-300 take the Canon teleconverters? I like the look of this lens. Right now, my Canon 300 f4 IS lives on my 7D as the equipment I use for maximum reach. I also use the 1.4 II TC when I need more reach. It's pretty good, especially with good light. This is one of the cheapest ways to get this type of reach and still maintain decent quality. 420mm at 5.6 in a decent size package.

There is also the Sigma 150-500 to consider.

I tried the 120-300 OS with a Canon III x2 on a 5d MkIII. Works OK and gives you up to 600mm f5.6 ...

the Sigma 150-500 is no comparison to the 120-300 ... It feels kind of toy lens against the former. the 120-300 F2.8 OS (new one!!!) can rival the Canon 70-200mm f2.8 IS II in sharpness if you get a good copy ... There are several reviews online that confirm this.   
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K-amps

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #18 on: May 31, 2012, 11:35:41 AM »
Here is another thought... 

Consider a 2x mk.iii TC and use it on your 70-200mk.ii

I do the same and I rarely take out my 100-400L, but use the 70-200mk.ii + 2x mk.iii combo for most trips. The IQ is very comparable to the standalone 100-400L even though in absolute terms one could argue for the other. I find the combo has more gradiation in shadows, while the 100-400L has more contrast (both at 400mm), contrast is fixable in PP. I AFMA'ed my 70-200mkii + 2xmk.iii combo and it is very close in sharpness to the 100-400L. But if one splits hairs, one could call the 100-400L sharper in a controlled test... but in the field I doubt you will see the difference most of the time... the difference is probably more of academic in nature.

This will cost you less than $500 plus you can use the 2x on other lenses too.
« Last Edit: May 31, 2012, 11:46:58 AM by K-amps »
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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #19 on: May 31, 2012, 12:29:42 PM »
The simplest, cheapest and most effective option is a 7D.

It will multiply any lens by 1.6 with no loss of aperture speed and better quality than any teleconverter. Cheaper than many of the options being suggested here.
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Razor2012

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #20 on: May 31, 2012, 12:35:36 PM »
Here is another thought... 

Consider a 2x mk.iii TC and use it on your 70-200mk.ii

I do the same and I rarely take out my 100-400L, but use the 70-200mk.ii + 2x mk.iii combo for most trips. The IQ is very comparable to the standalone 100-400L even though in absolute terms one could argue for the other. I find the combo has more gradiation in shadows, while the 100-400L has more contrast (both at 400mm), contrast is fixable in PP. I AFMA'ed my 70-200mkii + 2xmk.iii combo and it is very close in sharpness to the 100-400L. But if one splits hairs, one could call the 100-400L sharper in a controlled test... but in the field I doubt you will see the difference most of the time... the difference is probably more of academic in nature.

This will cost you less than $500 plus you can use the 2x on other lenses too.

I'm actually considering getting the 2xIII also.  I thought I'd never go more than 1.4x on the 70-200 2.8II, but after hearing that people were getting pretty good results with the 2x, I have now changed my mind.  This is good because it makes more sense to have 400mm rather than just 280, even though you are losing a cpl of stops.
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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #21 on: May 31, 2012, 06:37:02 PM »
The simplest, cheapest and most effective option is a 7D.

It will multiply any lens by 1.6 with no loss of aperture speed and better quality than any teleconverter. Cheaper than many of the options being suggested here.
someone else suggested the same to me just the other day!

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #21 on: May 31, 2012, 06:37:02 PM »

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #22 on: May 31, 2012, 10:23:25 PM »
The simplest, cheapest and most effective option is a 7D.

It will multiply any lens by 1.6 with no loss of aperture speed and better quality than any teleconverter. Cheaper than many of the options being suggested here.
someone else suggested the same to me just the other day!

I have the 7d, and use it with all those lenses.  Its great as long as light is bright, but as it gets darker, its worthless while my 5D MK II and MK III keep right on going.  A 1.4 or 2X TC with the 70-200mm MK II really loses ability to focus except in good light, while the 100-400mmL keeps on going.
 
There are lots of choices, and every one is a compromise, so pick your poison.

drjlo

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #23 on: June 01, 2012, 04:39:46 AM »
The simplest, cheapest and most effective option is a 7D.

It will multiply any lens by 1.6 with no loss of aperture speed and better quality than any teleconverter. Cheaper than many of the options being suggested here.

Well, if I were to do that, I would buy a 7D after the rumored 7D MkII is launched and price of 7D goes down.  If 7D II retains the same tired 18MP sensor as widely believed, that is..  Actually, I already have a 550D that already shares the same darn sensor, so the need is not that pressing. 

Of course, on some nights, I still have strange thoughts of buying a D800 as my "backup." :o

drjlo

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #24 on: June 01, 2012, 04:28:27 PM »
After doing lots of research, I've failed to get excited about the illusive good, affordable 400 f/4 lens.  It's curious why Canon has not updated the aging 300 f/4 L IS (only 2 stops) and 400 f/5.6L, and those are not exactly cheap, either.

I just ordered the Kenko 2x DGX TC, as the IQ of my Kenko 1.4x DGX is stellar, and I will make do with the 2x TC on my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 MkII until something more exciting looms ahead..

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #25 on: June 01, 2012, 04:45:35 PM »
After doing lots of research, I've failed to get excited about the illusive good, affordable 400 f/4 lens.  It's curious why Canon has not updated the aging 300 f/4 L IS (only 2 stops) and 400 f/5.6L, and those are not exactly cheap, either.

I just ordered the Kenko 2x DGX TC, as the IQ of my Kenko 1.4x DGX is stellar, and I will make do with the 2x TC on my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 MkII until something more exciting looms ahead..

I hope it works for you, however i don't know if it will stand up to the anon 2x Mk.iii and hence comparisons with the 100-400L might fall shot with the kenko. On the plus side... it will fir almost all EF lenses where as the Canon does not.
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drjlo

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #26 on: June 01, 2012, 04:53:24 PM »
After doing lots of research, I've failed to get excited about the illusive good, affordable 400 f/4 lens.  It's curious why Canon has not updated the aging 300 f/4 L IS (only 2 stops) and 400 f/5.6L, and those are not exactly cheap, either.

I just ordered the Kenko 2x DGX TC, as the IQ of my Kenko 1.4x DGX is stellar, and I will make do with the 2x TC on my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 MkII until something more exciting looms ahead..

I hope it works for you, however i don't know if it will stand up to the canon 2x Mk.iii and hence comparisons with the 100-400L might fall shot with the kenko. On the plus side... it will fir almost all EF lenses where as the Canon does not.

The clincher was I could order the Kenko 2x for $180 new from eBay.  Can't argue with that, and pretty much every user report I've read says Kenko 2x is indistinguishable from Canon 2x MkII, so even if Canon MkIII is a little better, who knows..

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #27 on: June 01, 2012, 05:04:29 PM »
After doing lots of research, I've failed to get excited about the illusive good, affordable 400 f/4 lens.  It's curious why Canon has not updated the aging 300 f/4 L IS (only 2 stops) and 400 f/5.6L, and those are not exactly cheap, either.

That is one reason to wait for the 100-400L replacement.  Even if it is priced at 2500, it will still be less costly than the 300 f/4 and the 400 f/5.6 combined, and should deliver better IQ too.

With the 100-400 ending at 400mm at f/5.6, it doesn't make sense to have a 400mm f/5.6 prime.  Perhaps Canon should introduce a 400mm f/4 prime instead.  Will it be expensive -- absolutely, but a lot less than the +10k 500mm or 600mm primes and only a stop slower with an 1.4x.

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #27 on: June 01, 2012, 05:04:29 PM »

drjlo

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #28 on: June 01, 2012, 05:47:16 PM »

With the 100-400 ending at 400mm at f/5.6, it doesn't make sense to have a 400mm f/5.6 prime.  Perhaps Canon should introduce a 400mm f/4 prime instead.  Will it be expensive -- absolutely, but a lot less than the +10k 500mm or 600mm primes and only a stop slower with an 1.4x.

I sure hope 100-400 MkII comes along, but honestly, waiting for these rumored Canon lenses is becoming very tiring. 

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #29 on: June 01, 2012, 06:47:28 PM »
I do have 100-400mm, 300mm (non-IS) and 1.4EF II.

Believe it or not I found that the 300+1.4 combination at f/7.1 was sharper than the 100-400 at f/8.0 !!!
(both on a tripod)

Maybe it's because it is the non-IS 300mm version I do not know.
Also it was not an extensive test (I was taking pictures and happened to have both of them).
The 100-400 is generally satisfactory but the 300 + 1.4 was better!
The 100-400 provides versatility but when time is available (tripod, static subjects) then I will prefer the other combination.

Now where is my cheap 400mm f/4.0 lens?

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Re: 400mm f/4. Anything good and "affordable"?
« Reply #29 on: June 01, 2012, 06:47:28 PM »