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  Reviews by: willis  

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Canon EOS 1D Mark III

Review Date: May 7, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: AF speed and accuracy, image quality, high ISO quality, viewfinder, solidity, ergonomics, highly configurable, general responsiveness.
Heavy and costly (bought post sub-mirror fix and latest firmware installed so no AF/tracking issues).

Coming from a 5D, I have been very satisfied with IQ. Fractionally less resolution but even better colour and high ISO. I get the impression DR is a bit wider.
General feel and responsiveness is on a whole new level and AF speed and accuracy is spectacular. Burst rate is faintly ridiculous! I've had no tracking problems since the latest firmware was installed and nothing I could really distinguish from user error even before the update. It just feels very high quality, does the job and inspires confidence that it can handle whatever you throw at it. Highly recommended.

Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS USM

Review Date: Apr 4, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness, compactness, weight, very fast focus even with 1.4 extender, image quality with extenders.
Price, but you get what you pay for. Lower contrast than fluorite superteles.

This was really the only option for me as a hand holdable wildlife lens. The 300 2.8 with extenders seems much heavier because of its weight distribution. It's very sharp contrary to internet rumour, a good performer even with my sigma 2x extender, with a 1.4x it's difficult to tell if an extender was used. Images do need a slight boost in contrast at times but otherwise its perfect for my needs and I'd not swap it for any other canon lens of similar price.

Canon EOS 5D

Review Date: Aug 18, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Beautiful files, compact compared to 1 series, low noise, now a relative bargain.
Not a sports camera. Loss of reach for birding/wildlife.

All I need in a camera. Great to use a 24-70 as its meant to be. AF is certainly better than the 30D but focus tracking isnt great despite the extra AF points. Build is perfectly ok though I can understand that some early adopters who paid full price might be a bit disappointed that feel is similar to the old 10D. Only 3 FPS so not the best for sports. Full frame is a disadvantage for bird photography.
Overall it feels like a mature product and although there may be additions I'd like to see there are no important deficiencies for my purposes.Not the best in all areas but in many ways the best all rounder and especially strong where it counts most-image quality.

Sigma 120-300mm f2.8 EX DG HSM

Review Date: Jul 27, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Range, versatility, fast and sharp wide open, rapid AF, gorgeous bokeh, well built, good value, excellent with sigma 1.4X and & 2x TCs.
Heavy (hand holdable but not much fun for prolonged periods), no IS, no focus range limiter. Very expensive front filter (105mm).

I bought this with a little trepidation as all my other lenses are Canon. Its now my sharpest lens. Excellent for sports as I hoped but what I didn't expect is the quality with a 2x TC. It needs a tripod but it's a great wildlife lens. From reading other reviews I seem to have a very good copy. I have nothing but praise for it.
While its fairly expensive its cheap compared to canon alternatives (and Canon don't make anything truly comparable).

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM

Review Date: Apr 11, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Zoom range, size, superb IS, FTM, non-rotating front element, AF speed, NO CA, sharp wide open at 300mm!
Pretty expensive for a slowish lens, nothing else.

I bought this for its size and hand-holdability and expected mediocre image quality. I have been extremely pleased with its performance. As good as my 100-400L. Don't know whether Canon have modified it or I've been lucky to get a good one but I certainly don't recognize the criticisms made by many reviewers. I would highly recommend it (I use it on a 5D).


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