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View Full Version : Tough lens choice



Daragh
03-27-2005, 07:36 AM
HI

I have a 20D and want a good zoom lens that is still portable. Ideally I would like 300mm or more. I was wondering which option you guys would recomend Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L USM with extenders or Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM.

I was able to borrow the 70-200 for the weekend and it is a great lens once I got used to the weight, but I am not able to borrow either extenders or the 100-400 so any help would be most welcome.

Daragh

Daragh
03-27-2005, 03:16 PM
Hi

Any one out there with anything to say on this query, I want to buy one or other lens on Tuesday as I am going away Wednesday and will get a chance to use it.

Thanx

Daragh

speaklightly
03-27-2005, 03:46 PM
daragh-

My husband and I use two Canon dSLR cameras, a 20D and a 350 XT.
We are currently using a Canon 28-135mm F3.5-5.6 IS lens and a Tokina 24-200mm 3.5-5.6 lens.

Both lenses give us great digital photos. You can see sample photos at:

www.digicamlady.smugmug.com/gallery/449518

Sarah Joyce

D70FAN
03-27-2005, 05:14 PM
HI

I have a 20D and want a good zoom lens that is still portable. Ideally I would like 300mm or more. I was wondering which option you guys would recomend Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L USM with extenders or Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM.

I was able to borrow the 70-200 for the weekend and it is a great lens once I got used to the weight, but I am not able to borrow either extenders or the 100-400 so any help would be most welcome.

Daragh

The best rated in the consumer 70-300 group is the Sigma 70-300 APO macro Super (~$199).

If you have the money then take a look at the Sigma 80-400 EX OS which is image stabilized (~$999). Or the 50-500 (not image stabilized) for about the same price.

These are all decent long zooms, and are at the top of their catagory in consumer lenses. Not necessarily fantastic per-se, but seem to work well.

From this point on the prices go into the $1500 to $10,000 zone.

TenD
03-27-2005, 06:01 PM
The 70-200 performs quite well with the 1.4x teleconverter, and the 100-400 performs quite well on it's own. They are both quite bulky, but worth the bulk IMO. The 70-200 f/4 is a little slower than the f/2.8 but is basically as sharp, and works as well with the teleconverter. If you're looking for smaller you may want to take a look at the Canon 70-300 DO. It might not be quite as sharp as the L glass but it holds it's own and is quite compact for such a range. Good luck with your search.

D70FAN
03-27-2005, 06:43 PM
The 70-200 performs quite well with the 1.4x teleconverter, and the 100-400 performs quite well on it's own. They are both quite bulky, but worth the bulk IMO. The 70-200 f/4 is a little slower than the f/2.8 but is basically as sharp, and works as well with the teleconverter. If you're looking for smaller you may want to take a look at the Canon 70-300 DO. It might not be quite as sharp as the L glass but it holds it's own and is quite compact for such a range. Good luck with your search.

The Canon 70-200 is a top performer in the 200mm group and runs about $579, the 100 to 400 USM L is around $1409 (rated best in class) with the Sigma 80-400 rated about 3 back for $997. Both with image stabilization.

TenD do you own all of these lenses? If so pretty nice collection.

TenD
03-27-2005, 07:06 PM
I have a friend who has the 70-200 f/4 and I have had the chance to use it on his rebel a bit, I have an 80-200 f/2.8L which is as good or better than the 70-200 f/2.8 and I have read a lot of reviews on the 70-200. Another friend used the 100-400 exclusively as his long zoom for, for lack of a better word "sports" photography(he actually jumps out of airplanes with it). I haven't used the DO, but from reviews it isn't as sharp as the L's but is quite compact.
My collection is 17-40 f/4L, 28-105 f/3.5-4.5, 50 f/1.8 MkI, 80-200 f/2.8L, 300 f/4L, and hopefully soon a 1.4x teleconverter, again which I have read a number of review on and heard it is much sharper than the 2x. I am interested in the Tamron 1.4x because from what I have seen it holds up quite well, so it's between the Canon and the Tamron for converters. I am also looking at a 28-70f/2.8L or Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 for a mid zoom walk around.

D70FAN
03-28-2005, 06:02 AM
I have a friend who has the 70-200 f/4 and I have had the chance to use it on his rebel a bit, I have an 80-200 f/2.8L which is as good or better than the 70-200 f/2.8 and I have read a lot of reviews on the 70-200. Another friend used the 100-400 exclusively as his long zoom for, for lack of a better word "sports" photography(he actually jumps out of airplanes with it). I haven't used the DO, but from reviews it isn't as sharp as the L's but is quite compact.
My collection is 17-40 f/4L, 28-105 f/3.5-4.5, 50 f/1.8 MkI, 80-200 f/2.8L, 300 f/4L, and hopefully soon a 1.4x teleconverter, again which I have read a number of review on and heard it is much sharper than the 2x. I am interested in the Tamron 1.4x because from what I have seen it holds up quite well, so it's between the Canon and the Tamron for converters. I am also looking at a 28-70f/2.8L or Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 for a mid zoom walk around.

Thanks. If we need input on these lenses it's nice to know that we have someone who has actually used them.

gary_hendricks
03-28-2005, 06:36 AM
I think both lenses will give ya great results.

24Peter
03-28-2005, 08:04 AM
Hi all - I'm getting closer to buying a Rebel XT and am considering an all around zoom. Any thoughts on this lens:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=productlist&A=details&Q=&sku=363593&is=REG

Daragh
03-28-2005, 09:18 AM
Hi

Sarah, some great photos on your site.

George, I have the Sigma 70-300 APO, it is a great lens and very portable, but I find the colours a bit off and it is too slow. I did check out the Sigma 80-400 but just did not like it, the zoom was very sticky on the three models the shop had and I found it v slow to focus on 20D.

Right now I am coming down in favour of the 2.8 L 70-200 IS, I can get the converter(s) later. I will let you know tomorrow which I bought, by then I might favour to 4.5-5.6 L 100-400 IS :confused: They are both the same price here 2000 ($2575). The Sigma 80-400 is great value at 1200 ($1550) pity about the sticky zoom and focus speed, it is a very sharp lens.

Thanx for all the suggestions.

Daragh

TenD
03-28-2005, 05:06 PM
I haven't used the modern versions, but back about 10 years ago I had owned both the Sigma 28-200 aspherical and the Tamron 28-200. Both were slow to focus, and soft, with the Sigma being just slightly better. The build quality was decent in both of them. I traded the Tamron for the Sigma, then sold the Sigma and bought the much better Canon 28-105. I will eventually sell the Canon for either a 28-70 f/2.8L or Tamron 28-75 f/2.8.

GlennD
03-29-2005, 08:02 AM
I had the Canon 70-200 IS and did not keep it. It's a monster, both very large and very heavy. The performace is good but is the very slight difference in picture quality really worth the expense and effort in packing it around?

I compared it to my Canon 75-300 IS II and to be honest I had to use a high powered loupe to see any difference at all. I sold the 75-300 just before receiveing the 70-200IS and really regret selling it. Yes the IS was a bit clunky but it's performance was worth every penny and and when comparing 13 x 19 prints, it very hard it see any difference at all between the two lenses.

Ya, you can say its an "L" and "it's white" but I've been in photography since 1947 and impressing someone is not as important and "bang for the buck". If you don't mind the bulk I'm sure you'll be happy with the 70-200 IS but remember "L" lenses bounce just as high as "NON L" lenses. Look at the finished results and judge for your self. As for the f/2.8 speed. with todays wonderful sensors, using high ISO speeds produces very acceptable results and under exposing full stop is easy to correct in Photoshop.

Glenn

speaklightly
03-29-2005, 09:23 AM
23peter-

I have tried both the Tamron 18-200mm and the Tokina 24-200mm. I felt that the Tokina 24-200mm was the better of the two lenses.

Sarah Joyce

eagle17
03-29-2005, 11:39 AM
I have used the 100-400 and loved it in fact I have just made enough cash to purchase an 80-400 to play with and see if it can compete I will post my comments in the lenses area of the site.

as for the 70-200 i have the f4L and it is a very nice lens one of my favorites I can even say. I plan to do many direct comparisons to the 80-400 lens infact.

I also have the 18-125 but am quicly finding its limitations when recently blowing up some of my "money" shots to 20x30in.

If you have the money I would say the 100-400 is the safest bet... otherwise do like I am doing and go try out an 80-400 and 100-400 at the local camera store then decide. (if you can find a store with either of those in stock at the same time...

Daragh
03-29-2005, 02:52 PM
Well I finally settled on the 70-200. I will get the 1.4 extender sometime. I am looking forward to some good weather to give it a decent try out, I'll let you know how I get on, Thanx for all the advise. If it performs as well as the 24-70 2.8, I will be pleased.

GlennD If it was available in black I'd buy it!

Daragh

vjack
08-03-2005, 09:10 AM
The 100-400 generates excellent reviews. Of course, so does the Sigma 50-500mm and the Tamron 200-500mm for a lot less money but without IS.

TheObiJuan
08-03-2005, 09:24 AM
Hi

Sarah, some great photos on your site.

George, I have the Sigma 70-300 APO, it is a great lens and very portable, but I find the colours a bit off and it is too slow. I did check out the Sigma 80-400 but just did not like it, the zoom was very sticky on the three models the shop had and I found it v slow to focus on 20D.

Right now I am coming down in favour of the 2.8 L 70-200 IS, I can get the converter(s) later. I will let you know tomorrow which I bought, by then I might favour to 4.5-5.6 L 100-400 IS :confused: They are both the same price here 2000 ($2575). The Sigma 80-400 is great value at 1200 ($1550) pity about the sticky zoom and focus speed, it is a very sharp lens.

Thanx for all the suggestions.

Daragh

Oh my, you are paying so much for those lenses. Does Ireland put a big duty on them, or what?

Rhys
08-03-2005, 10:03 AM
Oh my, you are paying so much for those lenses. Does Ireland put a big duty on them, or what?

I know Ireland puts a whopping tax on cars just so the country remains green and pleasant. Perhaps they also tax cameras.

An interesting note: digital still cameras are not subjected to any tax on import into britain other than VAT (17.5%).

cwphoto
08-03-2005, 11:59 PM
I had the Canon 70-200 IS and did not keep it. It's a monster, both very large and very heavy. The performace is good but is the very slight difference in picture quality really worth the expense and effort in packing it around?

I compared it to my Canon 75-300 IS II and to be honest I had to use a high powered loupe to see any difference at all. I sold the 75-300 just before receiveing the 70-200IS and really regret selling it. Yes the IS was a bit clunky but it's performance was worth every penny and and when comparing 13 x 19 prints, it very hard it see any difference at all between the two lenses.

Ya, you can say its an "L" and "it's white" but I've been in photography since 1947 and impressing someone is not as important and "bang for the buck". If you don't mind the bulk I'm sure you'll be happy with the 70-200 IS but remember "L" lenses bounce just as high as "NON L" lenses. Look at the finished results and judge for your self. As for the f/2.8 speed. with todays wonderful sensors, using high ISO speeds produces very acceptable results and under exposing full stop is easy to correct in Photoshop.

Glenn

You're overlooking DOF advantages with the 70-200. I used to have a 75-300 and my copy wasn't even close to being comparable in sharpness to either of the 70-200 Ls I have had.

You had a poor 70-200 IMO if there was no difference under a loupe.

24Peter
08-04-2005, 07:49 AM
if there was no difference under a loupe.

Pardon my ignorance, but was is a "loupe"? :)

cdifoto
08-04-2005, 07:52 AM
Pardon my ignorance, but was is a "loupe"? :)

A loupe is a magnifying glass for photography. Here's a pic of a fancy loupe:

http://www.lecirque.fr/images/loupe-leica.jpg

24Peter
08-04-2005, 07:59 AM
Oh, but of course. I knew that. :o But when I try to use it on my compact flash card to see my images all I get is the tiny writing on the back of the card... :rolleyes: