A Bit More About the New “Big White” Lenses Coming from Canon [CR3]

Canon Rumors Guy

Canon EOS 40D
Canon Rumors Premium
Jul 20, 2010
Canon will be announcing two new “big white” lenses ahead of Photokina in September. While we do not know the exact focal length of which lenses are coming, we now know that they are version III lenses, so that means two of the EF 300 f/2.8L IS II, EF 400 f/2.8L IS II, EF 500 f/4L IS II and EF 600 f/4L IS II are going to see an update very soon.
The last iterations of these lenses were announced in pairs. The first available lenses were the EF 300 f/2.8L IS II and the EF 400 f/2.8L IS II and then 5 months later, the EF 500mm f/4L IS II and EF 600 f/4L IS II were officially announced. Although, the latter two lenses received a development announcement at the same that the EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II and EF 400 f/2.8L IS II were officially announced...

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Re: A Bit More About the New \

YuengLinger said:
Waiting to learn more about the FF mirrorless mount.

I don't see what bearing that has on this. If they're version III lenses, they are EF (that's how the numbering goes). Which means Canon is expecting EF to have another good few years left (which should surprise nobody).
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Apr 23, 2018
Re: A Bit More About the New \

YuengLinger said:
Waiting to learn more about the FF mirrorless mount.

well, as much as I expect Canon FF MILCs to come with a new native mount: *even I* think we are a few years away from seeing Canon super-teles with native EF-X mount. Those brand-new 2018 EF versions of big whites will (hopefully) be fully prepared for firmware upgrades to work well on future Canon [EF-X] cameras.
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Re: A Bit More About the New \

ethanz said:
I'm guessing the updates will be similar to the 70-200. Not much to wow people with, but still a good update.

Having been a lurker for some time now, I am about 90% convinced that the EF mount that will remain. However, the refreshes will likely bring new technology that improves AF speed on mirrorless. This will be possible via the introduction of new focusing motors as well as an upgraded electronic interface between lens and camera. Due to better focus data negotiation between the 'mover' and the 'brain', faster as well as more accurate focus acquisition and tracking will be achieved. In addition to these mirrorless prep upgrades, I would expect the same lens coating technology to make its way to THE standard pro sports lens series. While one might scoff at coatings (hey what, it's only a new coat of polish?!), it can (as most readers of this site already know) make a massive difference. The fact that the formula to the coatings are kept as secret as they are, reveals the amount of work that has gone into Canon's R&D in this area.

[EDIT: I first gained a proper appreciation for Canon's work when I watched Roberto Abraham's (University of Toronto) presentation on the early results of Dragonfly - a telescope made up of bundles of EF 400 f/2.8L IS II lenses - 48 to be precise! The optics challenge is brilliantly described for those that have the interest to learn: https://youtu.be/EUr1mxanYmc. More information on the equipment can be found here: http://www.dunlap.utoronto.ca/instrumentation/dragonfly/]

Either way, I can also imagine Canon having tried out integrating carbon fiber into its barrel design. While it is true that the material is stiffer and could thus better protect the lenses during a fall, at a certain point, catastrophic failure can occur in the form of cracking which is quite difficult to repair. During the development cycle of its 787, Boeing and its contractors had to spend a large amount on research into the repair procedures and characteristics of fixed fuselages. Of course, metal alloy construction is better established in the industry and is cheaper. My hunch is that once set up, carbon fiber laminating machines are actually cheaper to operate than metal alloys but please correct me if I am wrong. Then again, I always see many pros working from monopods for hour long games so maybe weight reduction is indeed a nice to have but not a must have... Let us see in a few weeks' time :D
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Desperately seeking birds
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Aug 16, 2012
Re: A Bit More About the New \

Cryve said:
The most important improvement would be weight and size reduction.

Other improvments could be:

Better weight balance
Custom button on the lens
Built in teleconverter
better coatings

Built in teleconverter increases weight and size.
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Re: A Bit More About the New \

I'd really like to see Canon's Diffractive Optics technology start to become more mainstream in their fast super-telephoto primes. The early DO models suffered from some weird bokeh artifacts (onions), but that's mostly come under control with the latest 400mm f/4 DO IS II.

I guess the million dollar question is - has Canon advanced their DO manufacturing processes to make the cutting and polishing of large elements (needed in the 400mm f/2.8 & 600mm f/4) economically feasible? I think it's a fair argument that, as niche as the fast super-telephoto prime market is, there's a greater potential to gain market share by halving the size and dropping the weight by 60% for these great whites with the adoption of DO technology. More so I would say than any other single improvement (advanced coatings, improved IS, new paint... et cetera).

What would be really awesome is a 28-300mm F/3.5-5.6L DO IS. It's demand is a bit sparse, with the current model being a push/pull zoom. But trimming some fat and shrinking the volume of the current model with diffractive optics would make it my all-time favorite everyday lens.
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Apr 15, 2015
Re: A Bit More About the New \

If this is true, that's way less exciting :(

Launch the 600 DO and take my money!!

I can't imagine they would launch new a 600 III before they at least giving more information about the 600 DO, right? I'm waiting to buy a 600, but I wouldn't buy a 600 III without seeing the 600 DO first.

I'm struggling to see how they would even have a 600 DO and a 600 III in the same lineup as it is? The 400 DO works, because there isn't another 400 f/4 in the lineup. If both a 600 III and 600 DO were both f/4, I can't see why people would ever buy the III version. the 400 DO II has proved that image quality of DO lenses has come far enough that they can be compared to the other big whites, and that is a lens that is now a few years old. I know there might be a higher cost for a DO lens? Maybe? But once you get to prices in that range, people are buying them as serious tools and the cost is slightly less important.

If these are just new 300s and 400s it's going to be as exciting as that new 70-200 f/2.8 was :(
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Sep 4, 2012
Eastern Shore
Re: A Bit More About the New \

wtlloyd said:
This is pretty much exactly what I said in the previous lens thread. A refresh ala the 70-200 f/2.8 IS L. Nothing more.
If this rumor is true, then there must be something more to these lenses than we are being told. As has been mentioned, there may be a faster communication protocol being implemented to be compatible with future cameras, or better AF motors to improve on focus speed or accuracy. Maybe somethings else? But optics improvements alone dont’t seem to be worth the effort when consumers are asking for other lenses.
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