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Old Aug 29, 2006, 10:04 PM   #1
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:?Greetings. I need any advice for the following. I have a Canon 20D. Good Camera. I am not pleased with my current telephoto len (Canon 75-300 USM). On a recent trip most pictures captured at 200-300 range were soft in focus or blurry even with a monopod. Most days were overcast. I need recommendations with the following factors.

1) Weight of the lens is a major factor. I will be hiking with my camera equipment. I need recommendations or experiences on lighter weight lens. Need lens capable of at least 300.

2) Sharpness of images at max range 200-300 in different outdoor lighting conditions.

3) Any experience with any IS lens?

4) I still wish to use the AF on my camera if possible.

Thank You,


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Old Aug 29, 2006, 11:43 PM   #2
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Sigma 70-300APO is very good and very cheap.
It's not at it's best at 250-300mm though I think it might still be quite a bit better than the older canon. Doesn't have IS either.
I've heard a lot of good stuff about the newish canon 70-300IS but it's a bit pricey. If I was going to cough up for that I might go a bit further and get a 100-300f4 but then that's probably not a hiking lens...
Your autofocus will always work unless you put a lens slower than f5.6 on it. There aren't any in common use so this generally means trying to use a slow lens with a teleconverter.
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Old Aug 30, 2006, 12:48 AM   #3
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There are a few - the new 70-300 IS is nice, and fairly light.

The 70-300 DO IS is small and compact and quite light. It's a lens that requires a bit of work to get very sharp pictures though, you need to process correctly.

If you want to cut yourself and you're not afraid of a bit of weight the Sigma 100-300 f4 is the sharpest thing around.
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Old Aug 30, 2006, 7:22 AM   #4
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For wildlife a 300mm is still a bit short IMO...

That leave you with the 100-400L IS and the Sigma 100-300 f/4 EX which you can use with a 1.4x teleconverter (i.e. 420mm and still AF @ f/5.6). It's up to you if you need IS or not, but the Sigma is so sharp that it even outscores the 100-400L with a TC on - Just check the measured MTF of the 100-400L @ 400mm vs the Sigma @ 300mm with 1/4:

... and then if you really want IS there the more affordable 80-400 OS version but without HSM:

Another option is the Bigma which can get you to 500mm:
... but the Tamron is sharper (and lighter) but also without HSM:

None of theses lenses are light I'm afraid since they are all made of metal...
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