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Old Jul 24, 2007, 11:26 PM   #1
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Hey Everyone,

This is my first post here, and I must admit I am a bit of a newbie to the world of DSLR's. I just recently upgraded to a canon rebel xt (I got it for a steal on craiglist) from a canon powershot pro1. I have to say, I am hooked!

I just recently purchased a Canon EF 28-105 3.5-4.5 USM on ebay as a second lens to the standard wide angle ef-s 28-55mm kit lens, and I am now searching for my next lens purchase - a telephoto.

I've done a bit of homework and concluded a few things: 1.) Stick with canon, they are guranteed to work and tend to have an edge over 3rd party manufacturers like Sigma and Tamron. 2.)Take careful consideration into whether or not you want Image Stability 3.) Try and get a lens that has a low f/stop... especially for a telephoto lens.

I am a college student and so I am looking for a telephoto that is meant for begginers and amatures. I am not interested in purchasing 1,000 to 6,500 dollar lens. I have therefore set my sights on the following two lenses:

<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Canon-70-300mm-4-5-6-Lens-Cameras/dp/B0007Y794O/ref=pd_bbs_1/002-1613268-6339239?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=11853362 19&sr=8-1">Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM</a>

and

<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Canon-70-200mm-Telephoto-Zoom-Cameras/dp/B000053HH5/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-1613268-6339239?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=11853365 52&sr=1-1">Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM</a>

I am not going to be purchasing these quite yet. I want to enjoy my new lens as well as save money for these. I am hoping to pick them up AFTER christmas, when prices start to drop after the holidays. I know they are both good lenses, but I am not sure what the pros and cons are to either one and the reviews that I read on BHphoto and Amazon all have their biases.

I will say that I dont go to too many indoor sporting events so I am not too worried about shooting in those settings. I am considering the IS lens for two reasons 1.) Resale Value 2.) Evening and Night time shots.
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Old Jul 26, 2007, 11:03 AM   #2
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I'm looking for similar things. Though I guess I will have to spend likt $500+ to get a telephoto lense huh?

I was out for a walk and if I had a nice telephoto lense I had Osprey posing for me and with the kit lense it doesn't get anywhere close to them


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Old Jul 26, 2007, 12:10 PM   #3
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The Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM is a consumer grade lens with an expensive IS system. more than half the cost of that lens is for the IS system.

The 70-200 f/4 L is a pro grade lens optically and mecahnically.

Genuine Canon are NOT guarantied to work I know a fellow sending their genuine canon 24-70L in for service for the fourth time in a row. It has a bad soft focus issue the seems to be not uncommon.
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Old Jul 30, 2007, 6:38 PM   #4
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Well I own several Sigmas and know that alot of the 3rd party lenses are just as good or better than Canons non L glass,I own the 100-300 f4 Sigma and it is as sharp as L glass.Now the 2 lenses you have posted are good lenses and either is would be good for you.You have to figure is the 200 long enough for you or do you want to give up the f4 for IS?

I personally love longer but also like bigger glass.I would say if your shooting birds or sports go for the 300 as it usually is a bit brighter shooting those(unless you are shooting late in the day or at night) and the longer reach will help you out for most sports.
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Old Jul 31, 2007, 9:32 AM   #5
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I just bought the EF 70-300 IS NEW lens and i find it to be a great lens and optically, it is sharp at all arpetures, but on the 3rd party lenses everybody has their opinions i have the sigma 17-70 lens and bought it because of the reviews, one of my friends just bought the canon 17-85 IS lens and his is sharper and has better color than mine, when the reviews say the sigma is alot better ya right, well good luck
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Old Jul 31, 2007, 1:26 PM   #6
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I went to BHphoto today and tested out both lenses. I forgot to bring my CF card in so I dont have any test photos to show. I will say however that I decided against the 70-300mm lens. It's entirely made of plastic, the zoom feels flimsy, and the IQ is not that much better than the 70-200 L series lens.

The gentleman helping me wasn't really that great of a salesman. He offered no advice, no selling points, no persuasion. I left empty handed with my money in my hand. I felt as though the 200mm was selling me short of distance, and that the f/4.0 just wouldn't do me justice - not that an f/4.5 on the 300mm IS would do me justice either.

I'm not sure if trying to purchase the 200mm l series 2.8/f is better. The thing about it is I am not sure what I will primarilly be taking telephoto zoom pictures with, and I feel safer having spent my money on a bigger aperature because it gives me flexibility.

I am hoping to use these telephotos indoors once in a while - not frequently. I sat down and compiled a list of what I was hoping to use my telephoto lens for and here it is:

Outdoor walks
Pictures of friends outdoor tennis, soccer, and ultimate frisbee games
Infrequent indoor basketball games (small gym, well lit).
Infrequent auditorium pictures - my college had newt gingrich visit last year, it would have been awesome to get some good shots of him. The stage is well lit, whereas the audience is not.

Would the 200mm 4.0 L series do me justice. Even if I use a tripod indoors and get as close to the light as possible? Should I opt for something like the canon 200mm 2.8 or the Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro HSM lens? More advice/suggestions is certainly welcomed.
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Old Jul 31, 2007, 3:32 PM   #7
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The 70-200 f/4 L and 70-200 f/2.8 L are both very high quality pro level optics.

The f/2.8 is about double the cost of the f/4 so that is a big consideration if cash is an issue :-) (I am assuming the non IS version of both lenses)

Next consideration the f/4 can use the 1.4x TeleConverter and maintain AutoFocus
the f/2.8 can use either the 1.4x or 2x TeleConverters.

Then there is the weight factor
the f/2.8 weighs in at 46.4 oz and the f/4 is 25 oz

You have to be a bit careful, the heavyweight lenses can pull the face off an all polycarbon camera if not handled well.

My 300 f/2.8 weighs in at 91.7 oz. and I quickly learned it is not a joy to wander around with for long periods of time.

I think you are going in the right direction working out what you want to do with the lens before deciding on the one to purchase!
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Old Jul 31, 2007, 8:54 PM   #8
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PeterP wrote:
Quote:
The 70-200 f/4 L and 70-200 f/2.8 L are both very high quality pro level optics.

The f/2.8 is about double the cost of the f/4 so that is a big consideration if cash is an issue :-) (I am assuming the non IS version of both lenses)

Next consideration the f/4 can use the 1.4x TeleConverter and maintain AutoFocus
the f/2.8 can use either the 1.4x or 2x TeleConverters.

Then there is the weight factor
the f/2.8 weighs in at 46.4 oz and the f/4 is 25 oz

You have to be a bit careful, the heavyweight lenses can pull the face off an all polycarbon camera if not handled well.

My 300 f/2.8 weighs in at 91.7 oz. and I quickly learned it is not a joy to wander around with for long periods of time.

I think you are going in the right direction working out what you want to do with the lens before deciding on the one to purchase!
Cash is unfortunately an issue. I would LOVE the flexibility of a 2.8 full way through lens, but I am not sure I can afford it.

I saw the 3.5-4.5 70-300mm IS lens - I kind of wish canon made a non-is US version. I imagine, with the right price (say 800 bucks) that would be an extremly popular lens.

I think I have a game plan, either tomorrow or thursday I am going back to BHphoto to ask for a second demo (early in the morning). This time between the 70-200mm f/4.0 and the sigma 70-200 2.8 (800 bucks, seems to be almost as good as the L series and I bet the differences wont be too noticable to my amature eyes). Based on that test and price I will make a decision and then spend the rest of the day shop hopping to see what deals I can make. BH is great, but if I want to see how well I do in a NY original/tourist shop - perhaps being a native will make them lower the price a little. If not I will return to BH and make my purchase.

I know I initially said around christmas time but I just got a long overdue paycheck that I'd like to cash in on. I'll post my purchase (or cowardliness) results later on.
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Old Jul 31, 2007, 10:23 PM   #9
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while you are there try the 100-300 f4 sigma.I have it and love it.The f2.8 would be great but I havent had too many time that I needed it,except inside and you will need more than f2.8 for inside.It is a bit more money but it is a great lens that is super sharp.My favorite store in NYC is B&H and I am surprized the salesman didnt help more,most know what they are talking about.Good Luck.
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Old Aug 1, 2007, 8:08 AM   #10
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I agree with Striderxl if you're already contemplating an f/4:

1. The Sigma 100-300 F/4 EX is one of the sharpest lens in Sigma line up (and will cost less than a 70-200 f/2.8 + 1.4x extender), and of course it's going to be sharper than any zoom with an extender combo!

2. When combined with a 1.4x this 100-300 f/4 can hold its own against some of the best 400 L's as well...
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