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Cameras, Lenses and Accessories: Discuss Telephoto lens quandary...I currently have a Canon 5D and a Tamron AF28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di. I am looking for a telephoto and ...
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Old 17-07-2010, 00:47   #1 (permalink)
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Telephoto lens quandary

I currently have a Canon 5D and a Tamron AF28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di. I am looking for a telephoto and I am caught between a rock and a hard place. I'm looking at both the Canon EF 300mm F/4L IS USM with the 1.4x Mark II extender or the Canon EF 100-400mm F/4.5-5.6L IS USM, but must pick only one.

Has anyone out there compared or used these lenses? I enjoy photographing wildlife, sports, F1 races, and of course family action shots from a far to get the really interesting ones :o).

I would appreciate any feedback that I can receive on these two great lenses!

Thanks in advance.
Ed
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Old 17-07-2010, 02:27   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

I have the 100 -400mm and love it, never fails me, can get some wonderfully sharp pics fully extended and being a zoom you have much more flexibility than a fixed focal length, especially if you want to shoot sports!
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Old 17-07-2010, 08:40   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

Use both and prefer my Sigma 150-500 OS over the Canon 100-400 IS but love the Canon 300 f/4 IS with or without my Kenko 1.4x TC

I know I'd choose the 300mm but then I prefer the superior picture quality and love primes - but I'd probably have to recommend the 100-400 for the reasons that stupot gives, above
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Old 17-07-2010, 09:43   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

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Originally Posted by stupot View Post
I have the 100 -400mm and love it, never fails me, can get some wonderfully sharp pics fully extended and being a zoom you have much more flexibility than a fixed focal length, especially if you want to shoot sports!
I'd agree with Stupot except the 100-400 does fail me sometimes. If you have less than good light, forget it, and be prepared to use some high ISO. But for flexibility and in good light it's an excellent lens
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Old 17-07-2010, 10:43   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

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I'd agree with Stupot except the 100-400 does fail me sometimes. If you have less than good light, forget it, and be prepared to use some high ISO. But for flexibility and in good light it's an excellent lens
yes have to agree with the low light comment, so when i said it never fails me, it has made it a struggle on a couple of occasions. I recently took some indoor shots of a wedding from a balcony, hand held, no flash, aperture wide open, high ISO and just about managed to scrape through with some slightly noisy shots! However I Recently took some shots of a football match and i think i would of struggled with a prime, the pace of the game with subjects near and far a zoom was much needed! so i guess you have to think what will the lens be used for the most, I have heard some wonderful reviews of the 300mm f4 maybe go into a store (or even better borrow these 2) and see if you can try them both out!!
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Old 17-07-2010, 12:52   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

I do like the versatility of the tele-zooms over the primes but dislike the lack of picture quality on the high end. Relating to shooting at "high ISO" are we talking above 1000? How does the 100-400 fair in medium to overcast days? I have thought about a physical comparison inline with what stupot suggested. Not many shops carry both lenses though so renting is at a premium ($300+) - but it might be worth it.

I will also have to take a look at what Markulous recommended.

Thanks for your insight.
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Old 17-07-2010, 22:59   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Telephoto lens quandary

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I will also have to take a look at what Markulous recommended.
Just a quick followup on what I stated: the Sigma 150-500mm OS really needs to be @ f/8 or less to get the best from it (but then the Canon 100-400mm is not great @ f/5.6) - I'll up the ISO if necessary (but will always go for the low ISO slow shutter attempt first - if there's time!). I found the 350D was not great above ISO100, the 30D above ISO400 and the 7D I tend to not above ISO800 - but've managed some perfectly useable shots up to ISO3200
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