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Thread: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

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    Senior Member stavroshamster's Avatar
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    More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Right, after all your kind advice about filters and tripods (neither of which I have actually bought yet - I'm still feeling a bit poor and can't decide where my priorities are), I'm after some advice on telephoto lenses (fixed aperture unless I can be persuaded otherwise) to complement my other lenses (in my sig below), and for use for motorsport and wildlife.

    Specifically, I'd like something which extends at least 200mm. I was looking at the Canon 70-200 F4L which I had a chance to try out recently (my dad bought one) and it seemed pretty good, and quite good VFM, but I've not had a chance to try anything else really.

    I'm not bothered about image stabilisation really - I don't do a lot of shooting inside, and severe problems with noise of my 7D don't really kick in until ISO3200 or higher, so I can crank it up a bit if necessary to compensate.

    Having said that, I was quite tempted by the look of the Sigma 70-200 f2.8 - which would give me the extra flexibility of a wider aperture. However, this lacks the weather-sealing I'd get from the Canon F4, and I've seen variable reviews about the image quality. And it's more expensive (and would be a bit of a budget stretcher!)

    I'm not that keen on getting another Tamron - my 17-50 has dust issues, has really loud AF, and after Bobster's experience with Intro2020 I'd prefer to avoid I think.

    So - what are people's experiences with these, and potentially similar, lenses? Any recommendations?

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    Thermoelectroceramicist redddraggon's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    From what I've heard the 70-200mm F/4 is one of the sharpest lenses you can get. I'd go for an L lens over a Sigma any day of the week. Unless you need the extra stop of the F/2.8 go for the Canon.

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    Photographer Bobster's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by redddraggon View Post
    I'd go for an L lens over a Sigma any day of the week.
    ive had my Sigma 70-200 2.8 compared with a canon 70-200 2.8L IS and found my lens was sharper, i've shot in rain and not experienced any problems with water.. if i wanted to take it out in a down poor, i'd get a weather jacket for my kit anyway.. but its survived rainy wedding days without a hickup

    stick a x2 tele on it and you've got yourself a 140-400mm 5.6

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    Get off my lawn... rox0r's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    I couldn't be happier with the f4 IS L, it's my 'go-to' lens. Lovely rich colours and sharp as a pin, gives me the giggles when I use it because I know so long as I frame the shot right, it'll take care of the rest every time.

    I went for the IS because I just don't take my tripod anywhere unless I know I need it. Being able to spin off shots P&S style is important to me, that and I don't have the steadiest hands in the world anyway. Of course on a nice sunny day it's of no use, but I didn't want to have a lens that was limited by availability of light. (Note, I said 'limited', not crippled...before any f4 owners commence bombardment)

    The f2.8 L wasn't a consideration because it's like carrying a cast iron drainpipe around and the cost is prohibitive. If you need f2.8, go for the Sigma and save a truckload of cash.

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    Hardcore Til I Die htid's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    200mm is pretty short when it comes to wildlife, especially if you're going to be taking birds. I have a Nikon 300mm with 1.4tc on a cropped body which makes it 630mm and that's about as short as I'd be happy with unless you're getting really close (which is unlikely!)

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    I agree with htid,200MM will not have enough reach for taking pictures of birds.

    Even on my APS-C dSLR body 300MM is about the minimum you can get away with unless you are quite close to the subject. However,I find that the Sigma 135-400MM I have is better suited for wildlife photography as the extra reach is noticeable.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 16-02-2011 at 12:54 AM.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    I've been looking at the new Sigma 120-300 f2.8 recently (not that I can afford it) with a 2x TC it will still autofocus on Canon bodies. 600mm at f5.6 on a 40D (1.6x crop) should be pretty good for wildlife including birds and dolphins off the coast near me. Would also be good for taking shots of my kids surfing

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    how about the new Canon 100-400 IS f4? comes with a built in x1.4 tele

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    Talking Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Funkstar View Post
    Would also be good for taking shots of my kids surfing
    but all the cool shots of surfing are taken in the water with a UWA and under water housing

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    Get off my lawn... rox0r's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobster View Post
    how about the new Canon 100-400 IS f4? comes with a built in x1.4 tele
    You mean the new 200-400 with built in selectable tele. I'd hazard a wild guess that that puppy will come with an immense pricetag

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    A mere 9k on launch is the estimate I've been hearing thrown about!

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    I reluctantly sold a 70-200 F4L, which I regretted almost as soon as I'd sold it. It's about 1kg lighter than my 70-200 F2.8L, which makes a telling difference when climbing hills in Scotland.

    Beautiful, beautiful lens. Supremely sharp, nice colour contrast and almost no distortion. I sold it because I felt it was surplus to requirements (I need the F2.8 lens for some of the events work I do), but I now wish I'd kept it because it wasn't until I got to Scotland that I remembered why I held onto it after getting the 70-200 F2.8 lens.

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by htid View Post
    A mere 9k on launch is the estimate I've been hearing thrown about!
    I wouldn't be surprised at that price tag, but I reckon it'll be available for about £5,500 to £6,000 after a while - street prices tend to be much lower than Canon's RRP. Look at the price of the Nikon 200-400, add a 1.4x teleconverter and a bit more and you'll be close to the price of the Canon 200-400 1.4x

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    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobster View Post
    how about the new Canon 100-400 IS f4? comes with a built in x1.4 tele
    But doesn't give me f2.8 at any point

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    Re: More advice required: This time it's telephoto lenses

    oh just be done with it and get Sigzilla then!

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