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Author Topic: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I  (Read 9690 times)

charlesa

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400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« on: July 01, 2012, 05:16:13 PM »
Would like to enquire whether a 5 year old 400 mm f/2.8 L make I (not II) which is in excellent condition is a good deal at 4000 euro, and what is its performance with a 2x TC III on a 1DX, whether images are still sharp.

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400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« on: July 01, 2012, 05:16:13 PM »

bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2012, 06:07:50 PM »
I'd have to think that it's worth it.  That is still a very, very good lens if in excellent condition. 

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-400mm-f-2.8-L-IS-USM-Lens-Review.aspx
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Kernuak

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2012, 06:09:41 PM »
Would like to enquire whether a 5 year old 400 mm f/2.8 L make I (not II) which is in excellent condition is a good deal at 4000 euro, and what is its performance with a 2x TC III on a 1DX, whether images are still sharp.
That sounds very cheap to me, the cheapest 300 f/2.8 I've seen secondhand in the UK in the last few months was 3300. I can only compare with my 300 f/3.8 with a 2x extender. I've only used the combination a few times, the IQ is definitely reduced, but there is still some sharpness there. It ultimately depends on usage. For prints it should be fine, but I wouldn't want to try using the images commecially (from my 7D anyway). That said, I have never got around to microadjusting and the 1D X IQ should be better also.
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bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2012, 06:30:51 PM »
I don't know the IQ between version I and version II, but if you played it right, you could actually buy the 300 v1 and 400 v1 together for about $9k, vs. both newest versions for $20k.  Somehow that has to be worth it, if you can afford it.  Saving $11k for possibly marginal savings of IQ?
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Bombsight

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2012, 07:40:51 PM »
That is what I'm shooting with.... 400 f2.8 w/2x II .... its sharp!

Search flickr .... there is a "group" with really sharp shots there.

bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2012, 08:43:11 PM »
That is what I'm shooting with.... 400 f2.8 w/2x II .... its sharp!

Search flickr .... there is a "group" with really sharp shots there.

Well I'm doing football this fall and I can tell you two things for sure:  1.  I am going to have a 400mm f/2.8L IS lens and 2.  I'm NOT going to pay $11,400 for one.  Those two things are assured.
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eli72

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2012, 09:42:52 PM »
One thing that you may want to check into is the compatibility of the 400 f2.8 MkI and the 2x MkIII converter. Unless I am reading the 2x MkIII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/8/0300004658/01/extender-ef-2x-iii-en.pdf) wrong, it says "Using an Extender with this lens may result in incorrect autofocus." The 2x MkII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/0/0300003490/01/extenderef2xii-en.pdf) contains no such warning.

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2012, 09:42:52 PM »

bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2012, 11:45:02 PM »
One thing that you may want to check into is the compatibility of the 400 f2.8 MkI and the 2x MkIII converter. Unless I am reading the 2x MkIII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/8/0300004658/01/extender-ef-2x-iii-en.pdf) wrong, it says "Using an Extender with this lens may result in incorrect autofocus." The 2x MkII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/0/0300003490/01/extenderef2xii-en.pdf) contains no such warning.

eli72,

You are absolutely correct in the information you posted.  Thanks.
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TrumpetPower!

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2012, 12:07:34 AM »
First, I have to ask: is this with or without IS? There've been lots of versions of the 400 f/2.8 over the years, and not all have had IS. That's mostly of interest to know whether or not the price is fair.

That writ, even the oldest ones had phenomenal image quality. Of course, it's evolved from phenomenal to magical over the years, but you're certainly not going to be disappointed nor missing out by going with an older model.

What the latest version primarily brought, aside from the higher price tag, is a significantly reduced weight. You can actually hand-hold the new version, though not for a long time. Not so with any other 400 f/2.8, period (unless you're Arnold Schwarzenegger). While you wouldn't want to get the new version with the thought of hand-holding it, it makes a huge difference when hauling it all over the place.

(It's also even better optically and has better IS, but that's just gilding the lilly. The older versions were as close to perfection in those regards as makes no difference.)

But people have been shooting with lead-baloon 400 f/2.8s for as long as there have been 400 f/2.8s, so it's not like it's something that can't be dealt with. The new version is absolutely worth the extra money, but that value is meaningless unless the money is in the budget to consider it as an option in the first place.

Cheers,

b&

bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2012, 12:17:08 AM »
It's the Mark I, with IS.  The previous version prior to the Mark II.  5999 vs. 11,400 is a no brainer.  I shoot with a monopod, so I don't need to hand-hold it.  But thanks for your insight.  Always good to see another perspective.
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pwp

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2012, 12:22:42 AM »
At five years old it's going to have IS. But check first. Just remember that until just a few months ago when the 400 f/2.8 II shipped, the 400 f/2.8 MkI was the holy grail of 400mm glass in the Canon Universe. It's a truly fabulous lens. The major benefit of the MkII is a radical weight loss. The MkI is a substantial 11.83lb / 5,370g vs the MkII at a svelte 8.48lb / 3,850g is a whole lot more manageable. But for the price I'd be jumping on it, subject to being in reasonable condition. If the lens does not work for you, you won't lose a penny re-selling it.

PW

TexPhoto

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2012, 12:33:34 AM »
One thing that you may want to check into is the compatibility of the 400 f2.8 MkI and the 2x MkIII converter. Unless I am reading the 2x MkIII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/8/0300004658/01/extender-ef-2x-iii-en.pdf) wrong, it says "Using an Extender with this lens may result in incorrect autofocus." The 2x MkII manual (http://gdlp01.c-wss.com/gds/0/0300003490/01/extenderef2xii-en.pdf) contains no such warning.

eli72,

You are absolutely correct in the information you posted.  Thanks.

I have The Mark I IS lens and extender III (1.4X and 2X).  They work great together.

Note, there was a Mark I and Mark II version of this lens before the IS versions.  I assume your talking about the mark I IS lens because you said 5 years old...  Also, The "Mark I" is only called that because the mark II is called/labeled a Mark II.  The Mark I does not say Mark I on it. 
« Last Edit: July 02, 2012, 12:36:43 AM by TexPhoto »

bdunbar79

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2012, 12:37:23 AM »
Cool.  There were some problems with some lenses, hence the warning.  It doesn't mean it WON'T autofocus correctly, it says it MIGHT NOT autofocus correctly.  I'm glad that yours works b/c it's a heck of a lot cheaper using an extender than buying the new 600mm lens  :P
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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2012, 12:37:23 AM »

briansquibb

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2012, 01:29:49 AM »
I bought a used 400 f/2.8 IS to use on my 7D (now 1D4). It is as good as you get. I have even used it for shows (from the back), shooting wide open - an amazing experience.

It is heavy to use handheld but with care it is possible.

With extenders a tripod/monopod is (realistically) needed. I use a Manfrotto 055PROB with Manfrotto 393 gimbal from 200mm upwards

mb66energy

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2012, 03:34:20 AM »
This is a link to the lens comparison tool of the-digital-picture.com - old 2.8 400 vs new one with 2x TC mk iii :

http://the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=327&Camera=453&Sample=0FLI=4&API=2&LensComp=741&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=2&APIComp=0

You can play with parameters like TCs and aperture

These formalized tests are not always the best method to compare two lenses but these reflect my experience with my lenses (just a 5.6 400 in the super tele land) very well.

Best - Michael
TOOLS: EF-S 10-22 | 60 || EF 2.8/24 | 2.8/40* | 2.8 100 Macro* |2.0/100 | 4.0/70-200* | 5.6/400* || 2 x 40D | 600D | EOS M  [* most used lenses]

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Re: 400 mm f/2.8 L Mk I
« Reply #14 on: July 02, 2012, 03:34:20 AM »