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Author Topic: Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6  (Read 4897 times)

flyangler

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« on: September 02, 2007, 07:20:13 pm »

I was hoping someone might have experience with this lens for shooting sporting events? I'm looking at it as an option because I'm shooting both relatively static and moving objects
(jogging pace at most) over distances of between 10 and 50 metres and there is no way of knowing where the good stuff will happen next.

My other option I'm considering is the 70-200 2.8 (non IS) with a teleconverter. Using a 30D. Or maybe the 70-200 f4 with IS and teleconverter.

Light is typical of outdoors - sometimes sunny, sometime slightly overcast - being able to shoot in anything else is a bonus.

I'd appreciate any feedback on the lens that anyone could give.

Thanks,

Mark
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MikeMike

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2007, 01:19:55 am »

If your doing sports I don't recommend the 70-200 F/4 with a teleconverter because I'm sure it'll be quit slow for sports unless its a very bright sunny day. I own the 2.8 and it's a great lens and highly recommend. I've played with the 100-400 but never owned it so can't help you on that one  .


Mike
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DiaAzul

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2007, 02:28:30 am »

Although I don't shoot a lot of sport I would encourage you to look at the lens that gives you the widest aperture possible - not so much for lighting, but to ensure that you use the auto-focus to its full extent. I suggest you read the manual for your camera and understand fully the trade off between autofocus performance and maximum lens aperture. You will find that best performance on the autofocus is with lens rated at f/2.8 (perhaps f5.6) and that you loose functionality as the aperture size gets smaller. You also need to account for the stop loss that occurs with the teleconverter in your calculations.

Second aspect of the 100-400mm you need to consider is its push-pull zoom design, either you love it or you hate it. Personally, I find it OK when I have the time to fiddle with the locking ring, however, in a hurry it can be a bit of a nuisance and never has the correct aesthetic characteristic for me when I need it. That could be practice, but it is something that is important to people on a person by person basis. You also need to take into account that the IS on the 100-400 is a much earlier generation compared with the other lenses you mention and is less effective at eliminating vibration.

I wouldn't say the 100-400 is a complete no-no, however, in situations that you describe I would tend to go myself for the 70-200/2.8 plus a 1.4 teleconverter.
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David Plummer    http://photo.tanzo.org/

flyangler

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2007, 02:43:50 am »

Thanks David and Mike,

I agree with your comments (and those of two pro-photographers I just spoke to) that the 70-200 2.8 with a 1.4 TC is the way to go for me. Thanks for taking the time to give me your thoughts.

It seems lens compromise is almost never worthwhile. I'm glad I was set straight before I bought it.

Mark
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mahleu

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budjames

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #5 on: September 03, 2007, 04:51:38 am »

I own both the Canon 100-400 f4.5/5.6 L IS and 70-200 f2.8 L IS lenses. I've used both on my 1Ds Mk II and 20D bodies to shoot my kids' sports (swimming, baseball, softball, etc.). I've also used the 70-200 with a 1.4X extender.

I find that the 100-400 is an adequate lens for this application. Turning up the ISO to 800 still provides relatively noise-free images on my 1Ds but allows me to capture the action with a faster shutter speed. The IS feature is also a big help as I don't use a tripod or monopod on the sidelines.

The 70-200 is a much sharper lens, but too short for most outdoor field sports. With the 1.4x extender, it's a little better, but the extender degrades the sharpness enough that I just settle on the 100-400 lens most of the time.

A redesign of the Canon 100-400 is long overdue. The push-pull zoom is outdated and at f4.5/5.6, the lens is a bit slow. Unfortunately, this is currently the only option in the Canon "L" series lens line up for this zoom range.

Bud James
North Wales, PA
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Bud James
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wakeboy

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2007, 06:51:12 pm »

i use this lens for sports and get many great shots on it, using a 350d and a markIIn this lens needs light to work well, so for water sports its great (which is what i shoot) it is also very manageable in size and can be hand held easyily with the right shutter speed. Indoor sport is not really an option, but for everything else its great, the price and versertility of this lens are also unbeatable. The auto focus on a 1d is as fast as is needed and if it is not in focus, dont blame the lend blame the user or the back ground... i use it all the time. This lens has made some shots which have been double page spreads etc, so i cant complain, plus at 400 mmm yet goes in a backpack.... youtried a 400mm 2.8?    Anyway, cant recommend it enough, this lens pays bills for me....
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gunnar1

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2007, 11:45:41 pm »

I own a 100-400 and a 70-200 2.8. My primary use for the 100-400 is for outdoor sport, mostly bike racing and soccer. With the reasonably small aperture at the long end, the 5.6 certainly needs more light than the 2.8 but the 2.8 with the 1.4tc loses a stop too. I will second the opinion that you lose the sharpness that is inherent in the 100-400 by using the tc on the 70-200. When I first bought my 70-200, I considered selling the 100-400 to help pay for it but have long been glad that I didn't do that.

The 100-400 isn't great for all situations but sounds like a good choice for your application.

Richard
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Nill Toulme

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Canon 100-400mm f4.5-5.6
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2007, 10:25:47 am »

My two cents would be that for daylight sport shooting the 100-400 is a better option than the 70-200 f/2.8L IS with 1.4x.  The 70-200 by itself is certainly superior to the 100-400, but I consider it to be borderline unusable with the 1.4x (and completely unusable with the 2x) because of the extender's deleterious effects on both IQ and AF performance.

So, if you can live with the reach of the 70-200 on the 1.6x, fine.  But if you know you're going to need more than that and you know you'll be shooting in decent light, I'd go with the 100-400.

That said, it's perhaps worth adding that the 70-200 is a much more useful all-round lens for other things including portraits and indoor stage work.

Nill
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