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Old Sep 12, 2010, 6:10 PM   #1
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Default 1.4x vs 2x Canon Extender or save $$$

I have gotten a great feedback for the persons on here so here is the current quandary...

I have a Canon 5D MKII and for shooting wildlife I am using a Canon 70-200 2.8 and Canon 100-400 4.5-5.6

I am just not getting the distance I want at times. I am having to blow up and crop images to "create" the original photo I wanted to shoot. I feel as though I loose a lot within the shot doing this.

Well the way I see it I have a few options...

Canon 1.4x II
Canon 2x II

Canon 1.4x III
Canon 2x III

Obviously the III series hasnt been released but I am sure they will be very soon.

So the questions are... have you used both the 1.4x and 2x? Your thoughts and recommendations are welcomed.

Reading the specs of the III series, does it justify the $500 price tag?
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 6:25 PM   #2
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Do you want to shoot with AF, if so then they will only be any use on the 70-200 which sort of defeats the object when you have the 100-400 already. With the 100-400 you could get AF with a 1 series camera but I still find using f8 the AF isn't all that great so I don't bother. I would put the money to a longer lens or a crop body.
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 8:15 PM   #3
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Shooting AF is nice when its wildlife that might be gone at any moment or is really moving around.

I havent seen a compatibility chart for the III series yet so I dont want to rule out a possibility yet especially with this new microcomputer syncing the lens and camera.

The extender would also be useful shooting macros as it is supposed to be able to multiply the 180 Macro which would be exciting as there are no L lens with greater possibilities in the world of macro.

For the price and weight, a extender seems to be the way to go. I am not going to be buying an Fixed any times soon, nor could I justify the price in any other huge lens as I have 7 of them.

I am not going to buy both but I am leaning towards one of the two extenders being an Xmas present to myself. So it starts to come down to which is better and is more effective in the field... both will be $500 from my understanding.
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 8:21 PM   #4
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To clarify, I have seen this on compatibility with lenses, but nothing on AF
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Old Sep 12, 2010, 9:33 PM   #5
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The point is that with a 2X on a 70-200 mm f2.8 you are left with a 140-400mm f5.6 which has no real advantage over your 100-400mm lens. Add either tele-converter to your 100-400mm and kiss auto-focus goodbye. Either keep cropping with your 5D or else you could invest your $500 in a used 40D body with the 1.6 crop factor or if you are not comfortable with used you can get a new XSi body for $529 at Amazon.
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Old Sep 14, 2010, 6:05 PM   #6
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having shot both on both lenses I would recommend forgetting the 2X. The 1.4 works on both but is marginal in performance and I can say straight up that the 100-400 does not play nicely with any TC. One has to keep in mind that the TCs were designed for the 300 and up fast prime telephoto lenses and work their best with those. Shooting a 300 2.8 and a 400 2.8 with a 1.4 shows little IQ degradation, its obvious with the 2x but doable in a pinch. I used the 1.4 a lot on a 70-200 and at 200mm the image degradation was obvious. It worked well at the 150mm mark or 210mm but whats the point in that when you had 200mm without the TC. If I didnt already have them I would wait for a couple of reasons, Firstly let someone else find out if they are any good and secondly if you decide to get the older version the used cost will plummet as soon as the new version is released. As for pricing I have seen a few speculations but at this point thats all it is, speculation. We wont know what the cost is until the day of release. There is also speculation that the new 400 2.8 will top the price of the 800 5.6. Im finding a 50% increase in price on a high dollar item to be a bit over the top just as much as a 58% increase in the 1.4 and 2x TCs. Just not buying that as it sounds like a very stupid move. I would expect a 10-20% increase with 10 on the higher dollar items and 20 on the lower but to jack a $7K lens to over $11K sounds like financial suicide. Take for instance the last upgraded L lens, the 70-200. It had much more work into it with added UD and florite elements and gained an element where the larger ones are actually losing elements and getting lighter. The increase on the 70-200 was just shy of 18%.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 6:29 AM   #7
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One more point to keep in mind is that the setup you propose with or without a TC is not the desired rig for shooting wildlife. If you gander over to Naturescapes dot net a short lens there is a 400 2.8. Most are shooting with the 500 or 600 primes and a few with the 800 and are using 1D bodies for the focus and fast frame rates. You wont find any there using a 5DII and a 70-200. The 5DII is a great landscape and people shooting body but not for wildlife or sports and the 70-200 is a great go to lens for potraits and candid photos. As much as I hate to say it when it comes to long distance shooting you either have to get off the wallet or settle for less in the IQ department. There is always the cheaper alternative of the 300 f4 with a 1.4 TC that will get you out to 420mm but Im afraid you will still find that short in most instances when shooting wildlife.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 5:02 PM   #8
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all good points... after good consideration, Im not going to drop anything on a teleconverter.

I would rather crop a great shot than have no AF and take away so much light.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 6:25 PM   #9
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I would call that a good decision. I would be willing to wager that youll get better IQ out of a cropped image than either lens with a TC behind it with a 5DII.
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