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Author Topic: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI  (Read 8958 times)

dirtcastle

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135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« on: August 30, 2012, 03:42:38 PM »
I have the Canon 135mm L. It's my longest focal length.

If I want to shoot at longer focal lengths, would it make more sense to get an extender for the 135mm... or get a lens that has/includes a native 200mm length? Image quality is important. And I don't mind changing lenses (I'm mostly a prime shooter anyway).

I'd like to avoid paying an extra $1000 for the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS I, when all I really want is that 200mm length. Or how about the Canon 200mm f/2.8 L? My concern with the 200mm f/2.8 L is the lack of IS. Of course, that's also an issue for the 135mm + extender (but extenders are cheap, and if the IQ is 90% of a non-extended lens, I could probably settle for that until I have more funds).

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135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« on: August 30, 2012, 03:42:38 PM »

7enderbender

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2012, 10:09:04 AM »
I chose the 135L and 200 2.8LII combo over the 70-200. I find the big zooms a little too cumbersome. The lack of IS I actually see as an advantage. I don't really need it and it's another thing that breaks.

The 200 2.8 must be one of the best bargains Canon has to offer.


Just to add to this. I looked up the cost of this. The teleconverter is about $450. The 200 prime you can get for about $780. The zoom is over $2000 - and you might still want to keep your 135L depending on your usage. I personally would never want to part with it even if I had one of the 70-200 zooms.
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Michael_pfh

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2012, 11:29:17 AM »
Generally I would recommend to get the 70-200 2.8L IS II since it's a great lens and the better choice compared to 135 2.0L + 1.4x.

However, since you are not keen on spending that much money I can assure you that the 135 2.0L takes the 1.4x II well and that the pics are very usable.

I have no experience with the 200 2.8L and hence cannot give any comment on that one...
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dirtcastle

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2012, 03:51:18 AM »
Thank you both for the input!

I will definitely be holding onto my 135mm f/2 L, even if I got a 70-200mm.  I'm tempted to acquire a 70-200mm, but both its size and its price leave me wanting. Plus, I'm definitely more of a short range and wide angle shooter. I don't shoot sports or birds or events.

I've also considered the 200mm f/2.8 L, but I'm a bit hesitant to go beyond 135mm without IS. If the 135mm f/2.8 L had IS, I would just start saving for it now. Maybe I'll rent the 200 f/2.8 L and see if the lack of IS is an issue for me.

AmbientLight

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2012, 05:02:19 AM »
I don't think IS is such a huge issue at 200mm, provided you shoot only in situations with sufficient light to use a fast enough shutter speed.

As long as you don't shoot sports you will probably shoot a 70-200mm lens at 200mm most of the time, because you will take that lens only in case you really need the long focal length. In this case purchasing a 200mm prime may be a good idea for you.

dr croubie

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2012, 05:05:00 AM »
For the price of a few days' rental of any lens, you could just get a Kenko 1.4x Teleconverter. There's numerous options, DG is older than DGX, Pro300 is the top-line (above mc7 and mc4). Second-hand (or grey-import) you could be paying $100-150 on ebay, if you don't like it you can always on-sell it for about the same and only be down a few dollars and postage.
The quality of them is really good, even Art morris seems to like them on his 1DX. Plus side is that they can be used on more lenses than the Canon TCs, i've got the pro300 DG on my 70-300L (the 135L takes canon TCs so it'll definitely have no problem with a Kenko).
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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2012, 07:02:22 AM »
I may be in minority here, but I like shooting Portraits with TC's since the depth of field is reduced by the TC's multiplier... e.g. if the DoF of the 135mm is 1.4 inches for a given length, you can slap on a 1.4x TC and reduce the DoF to 1 inch (1.4/1.4=1) and melt the background even more. This assumes similar framing.

I have my 1.4x TC on my 70-200 mk.ii and I love the compression and OOF blur it provides. There might be some loss of sharpness if you really pixel peep, but who wants to see facial pores...  ;)
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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2012, 07:02:22 AM »

kirillica

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2012, 08:22:53 AM »
I don't suggest 70-200 f2.8 is mark i version, because it's not so good at all

K-amps

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2012, 09:23:43 AM »
I don't suggest 70-200 f2.8 is mark i version, because it's not so good at all

+1
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DigitalDivide

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2012, 11:27:29 AM »
Did you consider the 70-200L f/4 IS?  It is an extremely sharp lens with very good IQ, and it has the IS to make up for the narrower max aperture.  Of course if you are trying to freeze motion IS will not help, but you did say you don't plan on using this lens to shoot birds or sports.  In that case the only disadvantage I see is the inability to get paper-thin DOF.

On the plus side, the f/4 lens is much lighter and more compact than any of the 70-200L f/2.8 lenses, and is much less expensive than the mark II.  If you could manage without it you could get the non-IS version of the f/4 for about the same price as the 200 f/2.8.  I have no experience with the non-IS version, but I understand it is slightly less sharp than the IS model.

DigitalDivide

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2012, 12:03:43 PM »
I may be in minority here, but I like shooting Portraits with TC's since the depth of field is reduced by the TC's multiplier... e.g. if the DoF of the 135mm is 1.4 inches for a given length, you can slap on a 1.4x TC and reduce the DoF to 1 inch (1.4/1.4=1) and melt the background even more. This assumes similar framing.


I don't think this is correct. If you put a 1.4 TC on a 135mm f/2 lens it will behave exactly like a 189mm lens at f/2.8 (135mm x 1.4 = 189mm).  To get the same framing you will need to stand 1.4 times as far away from your subject.  So for example, if the subject distance is 100 inches with the 135mm at f/2.8, you will get a DOF of about 2.2 inches on FF.  Adding the 1.4 TC means you need to step backwards to 140 inches from your subject to get the same framing.  The DOF at 140 inches with a 189 mm f/2.8 lens is - 2.2 inches. :)

But...with the 135mm lens you still have the option of shooting wide open at f/2.0.  At 100 inches you'll now get a DOF of 1.6 inches, considerably narrower than you were able to get using the TC with the same framing.

I used the DOF calculator at http://www.outsight.com/hyperfocal.html for these calculations.

Halfrack

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2012, 12:41:05 PM »
+1 on the 200/2.8 - it's an amazing lens that does wonders, still kicking myself for selling mine.  There are other options, but it really comes down to what are you trying to accomplish.
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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2012, 12:41:14 PM »
I may be in minority here, but I like shooting Portraits with TC's since the depth of field is reduced by the TC's multiplier... e.g. if the DoF of the 135mm is 1.4 inches for a given length, you can slap on a 1.4x TC and reduce the DoF to 1 inch (1.4/1.4=1) and melt the background even more. This assumes similar framing.


I don't think this is correct. If you put a 1.4 TC on a 135mm f/2 lens it will behave exactly like a 189mm lens at f/2.8 (135mm x 1.4 = 189mm).  To get the same framing you will need to stand 1.4 times as far away from your subject.  So for example, if the subject distance is 100 inches with the 135mm at f/2.8, you will get a DOF of about 2.2 inches on FF.  Adding the 1.4 TC means you need to step backwards to 140 inches from your subject to get the same framing.  The DOF at 140 inches with a 189 mm f/2.8 lens is - 2.2 inches. :)

But...with the 135mm lens you still have the option of shooting wide open at f/2.0.  At 100 inches you'll now get a DOF of 1.6 inches, considerably narrower than you were able to get using the TC with the same framing.

I used the DOF calculator at http://www.outsight.com/hyperfocal.html for these calculations.


From my unscientific tests... it seems that OOF blur is always more with the TC since you need to stand further back.

Also I am not 100% sure you can use standard DoF calculators for TC calculations (Maybe I am wrong again).

You are right though, for the same framing I will need to step further back , but the DoF will not be 2.2 inches as in this case, but maybe 2.2/1.4 = 1.57inches?

For the most Part adding a 1.4x TC does add a stop of light, but no one has been able to convince me that the aperture (which determines DoF) magically closes down by adding a TC. Ye sthe system overall will lose a stop of light and "act" like a f/2.8 so that the camera can compensate for lower light transmitted, but the Aperture will stay wide open.

I need to do some tests on my own to prove or disprove this, but at the moment, I am not convinced that standard DoF calculators work correctly with TC's...

This is not scientific but I came across this... why is Kenko claiming the DoF will be lower pls. see their description: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/674567-REG/Kenko_PRO3002XDGXC_Teleplus_PRO_300_DG.html

Will anyone back me on this? I am out on a thin limb here... Neuro!!   :P
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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2012, 12:41:14 PM »

Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2012, 01:41:15 PM »
M5 135mmL is my most used lens, its wonderful.  But, it does not like extenders a 1.4X is OK, but the 70-200mm f/2.8 MK II is much better, and it likes extenders.

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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2012, 01:50:00 PM »
If you put a 1.4 TC on a 135mm f/2 lens it will behave exactly like a 189mm lens at f/2.8 (135mm x 1.4 = 189mm).

^^ That is 100% correct.  But...

I hear there's such a thing as teleconverter goggles, which are much like beer goggles, except that instead of making members of whatever gender you're attracted to more attractive, they make your lens have more OOF blur. 

Ok, that's a lie.   :P
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Re: 135mm + 1.4 extender _VS_ 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mkI
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2012, 01:50:00 PM »