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Archive 2012 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4
  
 
Rahul Kaw
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


I have a 70-200 II lens which I use for taking wildlife shots (birds mostly right now). It is a great lens to use however lacks reach. To extend the reach been thinking of buying 1.4x III extender & was almost about to buy it then came across a post about 300mm lens. Price differential is almost 3x so from that perspective it is an easy decision.
Question I have is 280mm long enough reach? I know it can be subjective but nonetheless would like to hear what you all think.


Thank you



Aug 07, 2012 at 07:15 PM
StarNut
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


IMO, 300mm isn't enough for birds, even big ones, except in very unusual circumstances.

But if you don't have the funds for a supertelephoto, the 70-200 II takes very, very well to extenders. I am quite happy to use that lens with the 2xIII when circumstances prevent me from having my long lens.



Aug 07, 2012 at 08:01 PM
StillFingerz
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


Hi Rahul,

I use a 1.4x II with both my 70-200 and 300 f4L IS lenses, you do take a small hit in IQ and AF speed. With my crop bodies when using center point AF BIFing is possible, it's not easy, but I don't have funds for a 500mm or longer telephoto.

A 300 + 1.4x combo (420mm) has decent reach on a crop body, you get a field of view equivalent to 670mm or so. Before getting my 300, other than zoos, the beach/pier and/or smallish ponds, I found the 70-200 + 1.4x a bit limiting, usually requiring a lot of cropping for a decent image. Even with the 300 combo there are times when I'd really like a 400 or longer, for the extra reach and faster AF. Using a 1.4x is a usable compromise.

My usual kit at kids soccer games and BIFing is a gripped 40D and a 300 with 1.4x II and a 50D with a 10-22 (a 50 f1.4, 100 mac and 70-200 are around also.) I'm looking at the 400 f5.6L, will probably rent it first before buying! I really wish Canon would update the 400 with IS or even better make a 500 f5.6L IS

There's also the 100-400 f4-5.6L IS you might consider, it's push pull design is not a fav of mine but the images I've seen are quite sharp and it's range of focal lengths are certainly convenient!

Jerry

Here's a BIP (bird on pole) from earlier this year, 40D, 300 f4L IS with 1.4x...converted to B&W via Lightroom v3.6...it was a cold overcast afternoon!








Aug 07, 2012 at 09:17 PM
surf monkey
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


Go with a 400f5.6.
Better IQ than either the 300f4 IS with/without extender.
Better IQ than the 70-200s with 2x extender.
Also better AF than any of those combos.

Like others have said, you need the reach.



Aug 07, 2012 at 10:00 PM
abqnmusa
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


Rahul Kaw,

+1 for the 400mm F5.6 (as Surf Monkey suggested)

400 F5.6 will be very nice for wildlife on your 7D
excellent IQ, fast focusing



Aug 07, 2012 at 10:17 PM
 

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Gochugogi
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


I use the Extender 1.4X with the 300 4L USM and IQ is excellent, just barely degraded from the nude lens. Sure AF is slightly slower but it is still very fast. I don't shoot birds much but it's really too short a rig for serious birding outside a zoo or gulls. Works great for sunsets, bikes and surfers!


Aug 07, 2012 at 10:20 PM
StarNut
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


Adding to my previous response, I certainly agree that it is likely that a lens like the 400/5.6 will be a better tool at that focal length than the 70-200 II with the 2xIII.

I was thinking that, if you like your 70-200 for other uses (and it is a spectacular lens, IMO), adding the 1.4xIII and 2xIII would keep the wonderful 70-200, and give you the flexibility of the longer focal lengths. But if you're not concerned about anything but wildlife photography, get the best prime you can afford.

As a data point, here's a photo taken with my Canon 7D, wearing a 70-200 f/2.8 IS II, with a 2xIII extender. This was taken in heavy overcast/foggy conditions, wide open at ISO 1600, hand held (don't forget the great IS that lens has) on top of a tiny boat bobbing on rough water, from a long way away. It's not a great photo, but it's a keeper by my standards (especially given the conditions), and it was taken under circumstances that required that I leave my long lens home. This is 60% of full size.








Aug 07, 2012 at 10:27 PM
StillFingerz
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


That's a super shot StarNut...from a boat no less! I keep seeing images from the 7D and I'm impressed, a 5D3 is in my sights, think I'll follow the 7D a bit closer, wait for it's eventual update...then re-evaluate


Aug 07, 2012 at 10:43 PM
eric_m
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


How often do you need 300mm? How often do you need more?

If your answer is an occasional need for 300, then the extender might do just the trick.

If your answer is you constantly shoot between 70 and 300, then I'd look at the 70-300L. It focuses much faster on my 1D4 than my 300/4 IS. I sold the 300/4 IS since I wasn't using it very often.

If you need more than 300, then do you want IS? Unless you can spare a few grand, your choices are the 70-200/2.8 with 2x or 300/4 with 1.4x.

If you can spare a few grand, the 300/2.8 takes the 1.4x really well. Or look at the 400/4 IS. I was never happy with the 300/4 + 2x, but the 300/2.8 with 2x performs well.

When you ask if 280mm is long enough, take your photos and crop them to 140%. Are you happy?



Aug 07, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Bullseye5d2
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · 1.4x III or 300mm f/4


I have 70-200mm f2.8L II IS and extender 1.4x II

1.4x Version II, from what I researched before buying an extender, doesn't make much difference in IQ than version III, so if you plan to use it with the 70-200 I would recommend the mk II rather than mk III (the 2.0 extender is another story, and the newer super telephotos are another story as well)


However, since you're hesitating between 280mm reach and 300mm reach for 3x the price, I would get the 280mm solution, cost-wise.

If 280mm isn't enough reach, is an extra 20mm going to make that much a difference? For bird shots you would require at least 400mm IMO.

So your dilemma should really be either 2x extender or 400mm lens... (that is if you want to take bird shots)




Aug 08, 2012 at 12:35 AM





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