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Archive 2012 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L
  
 
tompfeiffer
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p.1 #1 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


My days shooting sports are over, I'm now officially an old hobbyist (for several years in fact) and am just coming back to photography after a 4 year absence. One of the first things I saw was this new 70-300L. In my bag, I have the old 75-300IS and a 100-400L and thinking maybe just dump those and lighten the bag. Has anyone else been thru that train of thought that could offer some advice.


Jul 24, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Monito
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p.1 #2 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


I find the 100-400 very easy in the bag because it collapses to a small size. I use it a lot, at all its focal lengths, including 100 and 400 and intermediate lengths. I have no interest in getting rid of it, but would like to add a 70-200 f/2.8 IS II after getting a few other lenses (16-35 II and 24-70 II).


Jul 24, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Imagemaster
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p.1 #3 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


You will love the 70-300L. It is lighter, better IS, and IMO gives better results. The 100-400 is better if you are shooting at 300-400mm most of the time. In good light, I would say the 70-300L with a 1.4x TC is about as good as the 100-400.





bare 70-300L

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    300mm    f/11.0    1/200s    1600 ISO    -0.7 EV  







70-300L with 1.4x TC

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    420mm    f/8.0    1/320s    1600 ISO    -0.7 EV  




Jul 24, 2012 at 02:42 PM
matanuska
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p.1 #4 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


I basically did the same thing. I actually consolidated and downsized by selling both my 70-200 and 100-400 for the 70-300. Quite happy with the results, though like everything else, it is a compromise.

On the upside the 70-300:
Is smaller and lighter than either of the other two I sold.
It's a twist zoom, not a push-pull like the 100-400 (personal preference)
Better IS and AF than the 100-400
Better IQ than the 100-400, comparable (to me at least) to the 70-200

On the downside, the 70-300:
Requires yet another different filter size
Gives up a bit on the long end, though hasn't bothered me much
Zoom and focus rings reversed - after a year I still grab the focus ring first. Also can be a pain as carrying the hood reversed covers the zoom ring.



Jul 24, 2012 at 04:06 PM
molson
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p.1 #5 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


The copy of the 70-300L I tested was noticeably less sharp than my 100-400L, at all apertures and focal lengths. I was pretty disappointed, after all the hype the 70-300L has received...


Jul 24, 2012 at 04:32 PM
trenchmonkey
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p.1 #6 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


I'd check out Socrate's stunning captures (N&W Forum) with the 70-300L...before passing judgment.


Jul 24, 2012 at 04:37 PM
tompfeiffer
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p.1 #7 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Spectacular images Tony!
I don't consider the 100-400 to be very bag friendly any more. I'll definitely hang on to the 70-200, but I'm thinking that might be the only "big" lens I need. besides the macro, which is pretty light. It seems like with most lenses there are sample differences and perhaps body issues, but I'm piqued by this small lens. It makes me smile when people complain it doesn't come with a tripod mount, but it's only like 5-6 inches long. Those guys need to lug around a 300 2.8 for a while.
I actually have some 67mm filters from an old 24-85mm I had years ago.
Thanks as always for the help!



Jul 24, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Jon_Doh
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p.1 #8 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Imagemaster wrote:
You will love the 70-300L. It is lighter, better IS, and IMO gives better results. The 100-400 is better if you are shooting at 300-400mm most of the time. In good light, I would say the 70-300L with a 1.4x TC is about as good as the 100-400.


Those images define sharp! Very impressive, thanks for sharing.



Jul 24, 2012 at 06:25 PM
Imagemaster
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p.1 #9 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


molson wrote:
The copy of the 70-300L I tested was noticeably less sharp than my 100-400L, at all apertures and focal lengths. I was pretty disappointed, after all the hype the 70-300L has received...


You obviously tested a dud. You only have to read the reviews on this site to see how great this lens is.



Jul 24, 2012 at 06:29 PM
Lars Johnsson
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p.1 #10 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


The 70-300L is a great zoom for it's price. One of the few lenses that Canon have released lately with a good price.


Jul 24, 2012 at 06:34 PM
 

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Pixel Perfect
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p.1 #11 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Alas for me I do mainly find my 100-400L in the 300-400mm range, so 70-300 holds little interest. If I bought this, I then need to buy a 400 f/5.6L, so less portability than just keeping the 100-400L. Other than IS and weight, I see little to get excited about. Now if it had of been a 70-300 f/4 that would be different. Sure much heavier and expensive, but would make a nice 100-420 f/5.6.

Anyway I'm hanging out for a new 100-400L, but it doesn't really matter at this stage as the current version is so good.



Jul 24, 2012 at 11:04 PM
skibum5
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p.1 #12 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


tompfeiffer wrote:
My days shooting sports are over, I'm now officially an old hobbyist (for several years in fact) and am just coming back to photography after a 4 year absence. One of the first things I saw was this new 70-300L. In my bag, I have the old 75-300IS and a 100-400L and thinking maybe just dump those and lighten the bag. Has anyone else been thru that train of thought that could offer some advice.


The 70-300L is pretty awesome (and look at TDP's flare test where it does the best out of 70-200 f/4 IS or not, 70-300 IS non-L and Tamron 70-300VC). That said, if you need 400mm the 100-400mm will for sure deliver more detail to you, 100mm is way to much to make up for and it's not exactly like the 100-400L is terrible. Even the 300 2.8 IS can't be upscaled to match the 100-400L (although the 300 2.8 will do better if you add at 1.4x TC ).

It is sharp even at 300mm wide open edge to edge on FF. It performs, at all focal lengths, noticeably better than any 24-105 I've ever tried (not that that is a fair test, necessarily).



Edited on Jul 25, 2012 at 01:01 AM · View previous versions



Jul 25, 2012 at 12:53 AM
skibum5
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p.1 #13 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Lars Johnsson wrote:
The 70-300L is a great zoom for it's price. One of the few lenses that Canon have released lately with a good price.




It was so derided for price (especially since they didn't even include the tripod collar) for the first year that hardly anyone had even tried it or gave it a chance. It's only over the last year that it managed to slowly shake that off and go from a laughed at joke to one of the more respected lens releases.



Jul 25, 2012 at 12:55 AM
wesley lee
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p.1 #14 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Imagemaster wrote:
You will love the 70-300L. It is lighter, better IS, and IMO gives better results. The 100-400 is better if you are shooting at 300-400mm most of the time. In good light, I would say the 70-300L with a 1.4x TC is about as good as the 100-400.


Impressive! What 1.4x TC are you using? I know it's not Canon's. since they wont fit.




Jul 25, 2012 at 03:06 AM
Imagemaster
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p.1 #15 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


wesley lee wrote:
Impressive! What 1.4x TC are you using? I know it's not Canon's. since they wont fit.


Thanks, it is a Kenko DGX, which some say is sharper than the Canon.

First shot of the Purple Martin is a heavy crop.






#1

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    420mm    f/8.0    1/1600s    800 ISO    +1.0 EV  







#2 - Spotted Towhee

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    420mm    f/8.0    1/320s    1600 ISO    -0.3 EV  







#3 - Rufous Hummingbird

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    420mm    f/11.0    1/3200s    1600 ISO    -0.7 EV  







#4 - Black-headed Grosbeak

  Canon EOS-1D Mark IV    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    309mm    f/8.0    1/200s    1600 ISO    -0.7 EV  




Jul 25, 2012 at 03:53 AM
CW100
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p.1 #16 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


tompfeiffer wrote:
My days shooting sports are over, I'm now officially an old hobbyist (for several years in fact) and am just coming back to photography after a 4 year absence. One of the first things I saw was this new 70-300L. In my bag, I have the old 75-300IS and a 100-400L and thinking maybe just dump those and lighten the bag. Has anyone else been thru that train of thought that could offer some advice.


that makes sense if you're not shooting much between 300 - 400mm



Jul 25, 2012 at 10:55 AM
twistedlim
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p.1 #17 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


I did the same thing since I have moved out of the sports relm. Moving from the 70-200 2.8IS (thought I would never give it up) to the 70-300L. I had no intention of this until I tried the 70-300. I do not regret my decision at all.




  Canon EOS 5D Mark III    EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens    300mm    f/5.6    1/320s    1600 ISO    0.0 EV  




Jul 25, 2012 at 11:23 AM
Ferrophot
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p.1 #18 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


I have a 100-400L. Have not tried a 70-300L but I accept that it is superior to my 100-400 except in that 300 - 400mm range. And that's my problem. I only use the 100-400 for wildlife. 50% of that time I'm out at 400mm and wishing for more. As it stands now if I bought a 70-300L I'd need to keep the 100-400. With a 70-200 in the bag it's not a proposition for me.
I'd like to hear more about the 70-300 and the converter and what others think of this vs the 100-400L. Gorgeous shots from the 70-300, I can see why people like it. If I were starting now I think I'd go with the 70-300L and converter.



Jul 25, 2012 at 01:51 PM
howard
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p.1 #19 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Imagemaster wrote:
Thanks, it is a Kenko DGX, which some say is sharper than the Canon.

First shot of the Purple Martin is a heavy crop.



These are impressive images! What is your secret of getting such nearly noise-free images at high ISO?

Thanks,
Howard



Jul 25, 2012 at 02:00 PM
molson
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p.1 #20 · Thoughts on 100-400 vs 70-300L


Imagemaster wrote:
You obviously tested a dud. You only have to read the reviews on this site to see how great this lens is.



Well, the objective tests at SLRGear.com are pretty much in line with my observations, so at least Canon's duds are consistent.

One thing I've learned over the years is to not put too much stock in fanboy forum group "reviews" where all the people who have bought a particular piece of gear take turns trying to convince each other they made a great decision, because inevitably most of those people will have that same piece of gear up for sale a few months later.



Jul 25, 2012 at 02:27 PM
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