Lens Help...Please

ShebaJoShebaJo Registered Users Posts: 179 Major grins
edited December 25, 2004 in Cameras
I have a 20D, want/need a good longer lens. I know which is the best, I know it is an investment, but money is a consideration. Shooting wildlife (deer, elk, eagles), variety of other subjects.
How important is IS vs no IS in the 70-200 2.8?
Is the 70-200 4 is a good place to start? Not highend, but it is L series....
How would the 70-200 4 vs the 2.8 (non IS) compare?
75-300, longer lens, but, might I be better off with at least the 70-200 4.0L?
Please tell me what your thoughts about the lenses I am considering.
70-200 2.8L IS USM...
70-200 2.8L USM...
70-200 4.0L USM...
75-300 4.0 IS USM (not L)

Where do you suggest I purchase from?



  • dakar92dakar92 Registered Users Posts: 29 Big grins
    edited December 18, 2004
    Most people would say that 200mm is too short for shooting wildlife and especially for shooting birds, and I would tend to agree. I have both the 70-200 2.8 IS and the 200 2.8L prime. For shooting wildlife, I think you would have the zoom at 200mm all the time, and I would therefore recommend the 200 2.8 prime. This lens is often overlooked, but it is optically fantastic and it is relatively small and light, especially compared to the 70-200 IS. Plus it's black which I like and it's much cheaper than the fast zooms and also cheaper than the 70-200 f/4.

    I'm getting close to purchasing a long lens for shooting birds and other animals and I'm going back and forth between the 300 f/4 and the 400 f/5.6, but I'm leaning towards the 400 because I always seem to want more reach. In the meantime, I've just ordered a 1.4x teleconverter to use with the 200 prime and 70-200 zoom. This may satisfy me for a while, but I know I'll get a longer prime soon.

    The usefulness of the IS depends on the type of shooting you'll do. If you always use a tripod, the IS won't help much. If you're trying to capture birds in flight, you'll want higher shutter speeds and the IS won't help. If you're only planning to take shots handheld and you'll go out to shoot even when it's not bright and sunny, then the IS could be the difference between getting a good shot and getting a blurred picture.

    As for the place to buy, you can't go wrong with B&H but there are other good shops out there too. However, there are plenty of bad ones so you should probably ask about a certain place before you make a purchase if you're not sure.

    I hope this helps.
  • mercphotomercphoto Registered Users Posts: 4,550 Major grins
    edited December 18, 2004
    75-300, longer lens, but, might I be better off with at least the 70-200 4.0L?

    Absolutely. The 70-200/4L with a 1.4TC is a much better image than the 75-300.
    Please tell me what your thoughts about the lenses I am considering.
    70-200 2.8L IS USM...
    70-200 2.8L USM...
    70-200 4.0L USM...

    Will you be shooting in low light? If so get the 2.8. Will you need high shutter speeds? If so get the 2.8. But I second the recommendation on the 200mm/2.8L prime. For wildelife you will never be at under 200mm.

    For that matter, consider one of the larger primes (300, 400). Or if you really want a zoom, the 100-400 L zoom.
    Bill Jurasz - Mercury Photography - Cedar Park, TX
    A former sports shooter
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  • HarrybHarryb Registered Users, Retired Mod Posts: 22,708 Major grins
    edited December 19, 2004
    Hey Sheilawave.gif

    If you want to shoot wildlife you are going to want a reach of at least 400mm. I would recommend a prime lens rather than a zoom. I shoot most of my wildlife shots with the Nikon 80-400mm zoom and I find that almost always I'm zoomed out to 400mm and rarely do I actually use the zoom feature.

    If you can't afford a 400mm prime (they get rather pricey) I would go for a 300mm and get tele-extenders to extend your reach.

    http://behret.smugmug.com/ NANPA member
    How many photographers does it take to change a light bulb? 50. One to change the bulb, and forty-nine to say, "I could have done that better!"
  • davevdavev Registered Users Posts: 3,118 Major grins
    edited December 19, 2004
    Maybe a Sigma lens is the answer.
    They make a 50-500 zoom (bigma) for around a $1000 USD.
    They also make an 80-400 OS (stabilized) lens for around $1000 USD.
    From what I've read, the 50-500 uses tele-converters with no problem.
    So 500mm with a 1.6 crop factor is 800mm, with a 1.4 convert, it's 1120mm.

    I don't own either one, but I have seen some great pics from the bigma.

    What's your price limit? It may help folks to give you info.

    I have the Canon 70-200L f4 and the Canon 75-300 IS.
    The 70-200 is sharper than the 75-300 IS, but I feel more confident using
    IS than I do without it. Go to a store, put them on your camera with an
    empty card and snap some pics. Good luck.


    Basking in the shadows of yesterday's triumphs'.
  • luckyrweluckyrwe Registered Users Posts: 952 Major grins
    edited December 25, 2004
    Where wildlife is concerned, a 200mm is the "normal" lens. You definitely want longer. You can use a 2x teleconverter with the 70-200, but you may wish to check out the 300/4IS or the 400/5.6, either cost about $1100.

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