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| p.1 #17 · Which did you pick: 70-200/2.8 or f/4 IS? |
This question is strictly for those who bought the 70-200/4 IS or the f/2.8 non-IS. Assuming both were available when you purchased, why did you pick the smaller, slower lens with the IS over the larger f/2.8 lens without IS? Or vice-versa? Both cost pretty much the same amount, and I eventually hope to purchase one of the two as I establish a Canon kit. I personally would lean more toward the f/2.8 lens without the IS, especially as higher ISOs become common, and achieve much the same as what the IS can achieve. (Of course you could also use that same argument in favor of the f/4 IS.) Note, this question is not about the f/4 non-IS version or the f/2.8 IS versions. Strictly the f/4 with IS and the f/2.8 without IS. Do you agree with or regret your decision years later?
I originally added a 70-200 2.8 non-IS to my 100-300L (shortly later the 70-300 IS instead) to get the speed for shooting indoor and night time sports and for more blur during daytime sports.
Later when I stopped shooting indoor sports I decided to sell off the 2.8 non-IS and 70-300 IS for the 70-200 f/4 IS. The 300 2.8 IS was my main outdoor sports lens and I could get buy with the as a f/4 IS for wide angle field sports lens since I wasn't shooting for a serious paper or anything at that point. The f/4 IS was a lot more compact and lighter than the 2.8 non-IS so it was a nice travel/run around all day lens, jsut small enough to fit in cargo pants pocket to be stashed away and not be a bother. The 2.8 forget stashing that in a pocket and it was a drag to run around with it all day long hour after hour and have it taking up half the table when you stop to eat, etc.
The f/4 IS performed a bit better optically over the entire range and it was a range that with a FF body now on hand was fit to make it serve as a primary walk around lens, so a tiny little bonus there to get better image quality for what would be my single most used lens. The IS was very nice for all the times when going to the tripod was too much of a pain too annoying to others one was with etc. and quite useful for all the non-sports stuff. While larger and heavier than the 70-300 IS it AF sooo much more reliably, a huge plus an dit had slightly better image quality at the wider end and better at the longer end. With a TC it had almost the same reach and actually did better f/5.6 280mm than the 70-300 IS (although a tiny bit worse f/8 280mm). Swapping a TC on and off was a major pain and one that often I ended up not bothering with. And by selling the 2.8 non-IS and 70-300 IS and getting the f/4 IS I actually ended up with a bit of $$ back in pocket at the end of it too which never hurts (although a few years later it was to go back away when swapped this one for the 70-300L).
And just recently I switched to the 70-300L since I get a bit better quality near 70mm and a trace better near 200mm and much better above 200mm and not too much worse over the rest of the range other than around the middle of the 70-200 range and don't have to mess with a pain in the neck, slow, tricky TC swap on and off game. I do lose f/4 200mm which is a bit of a shame (less BG blur, doesn't work as well with extension tubes when using AF, etc.) and the non-constant f/4 70-200 makes it even worse yet for action (although for something like visiting a stadium, no press pass, the f/4-f/5.6 variable aperture 70-300 is better than beign stuck 70-200 or having constant f/5.6 the whole way), I mostly try to use the 300 2.8 for much of that. The pluses outweigh the minuses for my situation. If I ever did truly serious action shooting again I'd probably have to grab a 70-200 2.8 anyway.
AF is the same between the f/4IS and and 70-300L other than super dark conditions and the sad and surprising lack of a focus distance limited on the 70-300L, the IS is as good or better on the 7-300L.