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Archive 2013 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?
  
 
jtmiv
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p.1 #1 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


Dear Board,

I am seriously considering purchasing a 70-200Lf4 as they are on sale right now.

I will be using the lens on a 20D for outdoor photos while fishing and traveling and I am wondering if IS is worth the $ 500.00 premium.

If I purchase the lens I will have to order it as there are no camera stores reasonably close to me that stock any of the "L" series lenses. In order to make a more informed purchase decision I'd appreciate hearing the opinions of folks who have experience with these lenses as I am on the fence regarding the value of IS on this particular lens.

Thank you,

Tim Murphy



Jan 19, 2013 at 02:50 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #2 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


IS will be very useful if you use shutter speeds below about 1/200 sec when you're at the long end of the focal length range. Even more so if you add an Extender to the mix.


Jan 19, 2013 at 03:01 PM
snow14
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p.1 #3 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


At F4 only the answer is yes.


Jan 19, 2013 at 03:13 PM
OldCodger73
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p.1 #4 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


If the $500 isn't a deal killer I'd say go for the IS version. That lens is also reputed to be sharper than the non-IS version.

At one time I had the non-IS version and found that I really had to keep the speed up. I eventually sold it and bought a 100-400L as it had IS and the focal length worked better for me.

Jim, a question. Since the 20D is a 1.6 crop camera, should the minimum speed be 1/320 instead of 1/200? I've always puzzled over this.



Jan 19, 2013 at 03:22 PM
mabidally
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p.1 #5 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


IS will significantly improve stability when hand holding resulting in more keepers and sharper images. Suggest you go with the IS unless your going to be always shooting off a sturdy tripod.


Jan 19, 2013 at 03:24 PM
ej1001
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p.1 #6 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


It really depends on your shooting style. I personally opted for the non-is version, and it worked very well for me. You are just limited to how steady you can hold the camera and keeping the shutter speed high enough. If you are shooting mainly outside while travelling, I don't see any problems except for very late dusk and dawn, and even then I found a way to sturdy my camera... you can get a lot of sandbags and tripods for $500.

I have since traded my 70-200 F4L to a 200L 2.8 II (about the same price as the non-is) for a faster aperture due to shooting nighttime football and other sports that need a faster shutter speed (and IS wouldn't help me there anyway).

Good luck with your decision, the IS and non IS versions are both great lenses... and dont be afraid to buy used... the price is even better!

Erik



Jan 19, 2013 at 03:29 PM
gome1122
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p.1 #7 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


If you plan on using it with a tripod or monopod, no. If you plan to use it for sports, you will have a fast shutter speed and don,t need IS, so no for sports. But if it is for an everyday, you could get it. It's not necessarily needed though. I use my 70-200 f/4 non IS on a 7D effectively making it a 320mm in full frame terms. I shoot a lot of stuff with it at the 200mm end and I find that I don't really need the IS. Go try out the lens and see if you think you need it. t's a pretty light lens to me and I find that I can stabilize it well by hand.


Jan 19, 2013 at 03:42 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #8 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


OldCodger73 wrote:
...Jim, a question. Since the 20D is a 1.6 crop camera, should the minimum speed be 1/320 instead of 1/200? I've always puzzled over this.


Yeah, probably, but it depends on lots of other stuff too, especially magnification. The basic premise is based on acceptable sharpness at a constant print size; 8"x12", I believe (from a set viewing distance). If you pixel peep, an even higher shutter speed is probably appropriate. If you look at the full image content on a computer monitor (much lower mag.), then you could probably get away with a slower shutter speed.

Of course, an even more important factor is technique. Some people can hold a camera a lot steadier than other people.



Jan 19, 2013 at 03:46 PM
StillFingerz
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p.1 #9 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


If a monopod or tripod are regularly used then IS is not really required.
If you are hand-holding most of your shots then without a doubt spend the extra $500 on IS.

The 70-200 f4L IS has been my go to lens since 07 and having IS is fantastic. Hand holding is what I enjoy most and this lens is light weight, tack sharp, AF is quite fast and the contrast/colors it can produce are great...yes, I like the lens Adding a 1.4x II or III T/C to this lens works well and IS can really help in this case.

I've not used the non-IS version, but recently upgraded from the 100 f2.8 non-L macro to the L version that has IS. Hand holding even at 100mm with IS is simply wonderful.

One last thought, if that extra $500 will get you that fast prime or macro lens you want/need to complete your kit...it's a tougher call when funds are tight. Whatever 70-200 f4L you get you won't be disappointed.

Jerry



Jan 19, 2013 at 04:09 PM
jtmiv
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p.1 #10 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


Dear Board,

I'd like to thank you all for your thoughts and opinions.

As the prototypical hard headed Irishman it should come as no surprise that I am vehemently opposed to change, but by the same token I will grudgingly admit defeat when the admission is warranted.

IS it is!

Regards,

Tim Murphy




Jan 19, 2013 at 04:33 PM
 

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Don Clary
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p.1 #11 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


There is an old rule from the film days, that the minimum hand held shutter speed should be 1/focal length. For 200mm, no lower than 1/200 second.

I print very large and am a fanatic about image sharpness. I try to never let shutter speed be lower than 4 times focal length. If I'm using a lens such as 70-200 f4L IS, which as rated as 4 stop IS, rather than use as low as 1/12 second (4 stops), I try to keep it at 1/50 or higher (two stops).

For years, I owned a 200 f2.8L, and fought with myself about trading it in for the 70-200 f4L IS. I loved the f2.8 aperture but wanted IS. I don't shoot night sports, where f2.8 is better, and IS won't help subject motion.

I bought the 70-200 f4L IS, and tested both on a solid tripod in full bright sunlight. They were about equal in sharpness. Then I shot the 200 f2.8L handheld at 1/800 second side by side with the 70-200 f4L IS at 1/200 second. The zoom was clearly sharper at extreme high enlargement (50% pixels). I also consider myself no better or worse than other photographers about hand held steadiness.

I now have a 500 f4L IS, 300 f4L IS, 70-200 f4L IS, 100f2.8L IS macro, and have been watching 35mm f2L IS, 28mm f2.8L IS, and 24mm f4L IS.

My suggestion is do what ever it takes to afford the 70-200 f4L IS. The IS is worth every penny of its cost in image quality.

PS I shot the Taj Mahal in 1978 using a 2 1/4" by 3 1/4" medium format camera, 150mm lens, tripod mounted (tripods were allowed back then).

I reshot the same frontal view Taj Mahal in 2007, using a Canon 5D, and Canon 50mm f1.4. I shot it hand held, at 1/3200 sec. The later digital picture was MUCH sharper. There simply was no comparison!



Jan 19, 2013 at 04:44 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #12 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


I have used both lenses quite a bit, and I still own both the non-IS and the IS versions of the f/4 70-200mm lens.

The way I look at it, the IS feature is valuable and worth the higher lens cost unless:

1. the cost is prohibitive for you, in which case sacrificing the IS feature to get the lens at all likely is a good trade-off, or...

2. you will always shoot at high shutter speeds in excellent light, or...

3. you will always work from the tripod.

I mostly do shoot from the tripod, but there are enough occasions when I end up shooting hand held that the IS feature has been well worth it for me.

Dan

jtmiv wrote:
Dear Board,

I am seriously considering purchasing a 70-200Lf4 as they are on sale right now.

I will be using the lens on a 20D for outdoor photos while fishing and traveling and I am wondering if IS is worth the $ 500.00 premium.

If I purchase the lens I will have to order it as there are no camera stores reasonably close to me that stock any of the "L" series lenses. In order to make a more informed purchase decision I'd appreciate hearing the opinions of folks who have experience with these lenses as I am on the fence regarding the
...Show more



Jan 19, 2013 at 04:55 PM
jorgegarcia
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p.1 #13 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


for the money, why not consider the sigma 70-200 with os.


Jan 19, 2013 at 07:56 PM
Ralph Conway
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p.1 #14 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


YES.


Jan 19, 2013 at 08:05 PM
jcolwell
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p.1 #15 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


jorgegarcia wrote:
for the money, why not consider the sigma 70-200 with os.


At 1.43 kg and 198 mm long, the Sigma is almost twice the weight of the f/4L IS (0.76kg), and an inch longer (172mm). Don't get me wrong, I use the f/2.8L IS II myself, but one of the main positive attributes of the EF 70-200/4L IS is its small size and light weight. It also has fantastic IQ, of course.



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:22 PM
StarNut
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p.1 #16 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


"Worth it" is a function of, among other things, how important it is to your shooting style, and how much money you have.

If you're rich, so that $500 isn't terribly important, it's worth it.

If you shoot on a tripod, always, it's not worth it, regardless of your wealth.

For most of us in the middle, we have to evaluate how we are going to use the lens, and what we'll be giving up to get IS.

Only you can decide for you.

I decided "yes" for me, and am very glad I did. IS always is useful for me, especially the more modern IS.

Mark



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:24 PM
jtmiv
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p.1 #17 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


jcolwell wrote:
At 1.43 kg and 198 mm long, the Sigma is almost twice the weight of the f/4L IS (0.76kg), and an inch longer (172mm). Don't get me wrong, I use the f/2.8L IS II myself, but one of the main positive attributes of the EF 70-200/4L IS is its small size and light weight. It also has fantastic IQ, of course.


Dear jcolwell,

What you wrote is the key for me and how I plan to use the lens. If I had friends or family members that participated in indoor sports I'd definitely be looking more closely at 70-200f2.8's.

But I'm going to be using the lens to take pictures of friends along streams and lakes while they fish. I like the idea of something lighter and based on what I read here I'm sure the 70-200f4 IS will more than suit my needs.

Regards,

Tim Murphy



Jan 19, 2013 at 10:10 PM
rabbitmountain
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p.1 #18 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


I have owned the 70-200/4IS for a couple of years and it has served me extremely well. I really benefited from IS for travel photography. IS is a very useful feature on this lens and you can take sharp images at 1/30s @200mm as long as your subject sits still (which your fishing friends might actually do). The fact that it only weighs 750 grams adds to the fun.

The only reason I upgraded to the 70-200/2.8ISmkII is that I needed the f/2.8 and the mkII version actually lets me take professional sharp images wide open. I sold the f/4IS for 750 Euros, only 110 Euros less than what I paid for it 5 years earlier. So it holds its value too.

So go ahead and order the IS version. You won't be disappointed.



Jan 19, 2013 at 10:29 PM
mikeinctown
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p.1 #19 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


If you buy used, the IS version can be regularly had in near mint or mint condition for $900 or less. The non IS versions are normally about $550. At those price points I'd pick the IS version.

Also, when I joined CPS they sent me a catalog and a nice EF book. Looking through the books I can tell you that some serious redesign went into the 2.8v2 and the 4.0IS over the old 2.8 and non IS 4.0. They are completely different lenses and from what I hear a lot sharper than the older and non IS counterparts.



Jan 19, 2013 at 11:09 PM
jtmiv
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p.1 #20 · 70-200f4L, is IS worth an additional $ 500.00?


mikeinctown wrote:
If you buy used, the IS version can be regularly had in near mint or mint condition for $900 or less. The non IS versions are normally about $550. At those price points I'd pick the IS version.

Also, when I joined CPS they sent me a catalog and a nice EF book. Looking through the books I can tell you that some serious redesign went into the 2.8v2 and the 4.0IS over the old 2.8 and non IS 4.0. They are completely different lenses and from what I hear a lot sharper than the older and non IS counterparts.
...Show more

Dear mike,

Those prices are what I am seeing now too.

As an FYI though the new 70-200f4 non-IS is on sale at Best Buy for $ 559.00 in case anyone else viewing this thread is interested. The IS version is on sale for $ 1099.00 as well, but the $ 540.00 difference prompted me to ask for opinions.

I may wind up buying used because I'd like to add some other equipment to my bag and my tax refund will only be so big.

Regards,

Tim Murphy



Jan 19, 2013 at 11:32 PM
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