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Author Topic: Canon EF400 / 4 DO IS examples searched  (Read 2582 times)
Robert-Peter Westphal
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« on: September 27, 2013, 03:45:09 AM »
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Hello,

I'm considering to buy a EF 400 / 4 DO IS lens for wildlife photography. To be sure that I'll make no mistake, I would like to ask you for example of images shot with this lens.  I appreciate every picture shot with this lens, but I'm interested especially in images shot with both convertesr on the 5D Mk. II (IIII) or 7D.

Many thanks in advance !

Robert
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stever
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« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2013, 09:10:26 AM »
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if you're in the united states, i'd suggest you rent one from lensrentals.com.  I rented one for two wildlife trips a couple years ago primarily for use with the 40d and 1.4x (II).  I was disappointed with performance using the converter - the 1.4xIII is a better converter but I don't know if it will improve the DO.

I ended up buying a 400 5.6 which is sharper with and without the converter - unfortunately, without IS it's use is restricted.  the converter requires CD focusing with liveview and is strictly limited to tripod.  except in full light it's pretty much a tripod lens and I mostly use the 100-400 on 5D3 or 7D after all this.

my bottom line is that I don't think the 400 DO is worth the money.  I think the 300 f2.8 with the 2xIII is a better option, but the weight and expense are a problem

i'm just going to wait for the new 100-400 and/or 400 f5.6 IS
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NancyP
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« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2013, 04:39:17 PM »
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I myself am hoping for a better ISO performance and autofocus at f/8 from the next Canon high end APS-C ("7D2"). I enjoy my 400mm f/5.6L on my Canon 60D. Maybe above all, I ought to be working on my noise reduction method in post-processing.....
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Ellis Vener
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« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2013, 09:36:07 AM »
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I used one several years ago with a 1d Mark III to photograph an American Le Mans Series and Mazda series races  at Laguna Seca. Not nature and that camera body doesn't have Canon's latest (and vastly improved) autofocus of the EOS 1D X  but  here are my thoughts about the lens

Around a bright specular highlight reflection it wasn't uncommon to also record a circular rainbow chromatic aberration.
Autofocus was very good but not quite as stellar as the EF 300mm f/2.8L, 400mm f/2.8L or 500mm f/4L I also had access too. when the cars moving at a diagonal or across the field of view, not problems, but it had keeping up with cars coming more or less straight towards me.  By that i mean the focus would be a little behind where I thought it should be. This wasn't a back focusing issue,  it was an AF predictive tracking issue. Mind you I'm talking about race cars moving at around 200mph.
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Ellis Vener
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Robert DeCandido PhD
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« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2013, 10:38:30 AM »
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Hi - I used one for a full season of shooting migratory birds in flight in Thailand. The camera was the 1Ds3 (year was 2009). I sometimes used it with the 1.4x TC (version two).

It is an OK lens without the TC...with the TC AF slows and image is not as good.

I highly (highly) suggest purchasing a used 500mm F4 Canon lens (version one) for about $5500 or so...it is a much much better lens in every way...and takes the 1.4x TC very well...and you can easily hand-hold the 500mm F4 (of you have a place to rest the lens)

The 500 F4 Can (version one) is the way to go on this...I have been down the road you are considering and have been much happier with the 500 F4 than the 400 DO...

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Robert-Peter Westphal
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« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2013, 03:19:36 PM »
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Hello,

many thanks for your interesting answers ! But, I still would like to see some examples. Because the weight of this lens is that low, I could imagine that this is the right lens for me for hiking to distant location for wildlife- and landscape photography. The weight of the 500 / 4 IS I is nealry the double weight of the 400 / 4.

Robert
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JeanMichel
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« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2013, 03:33:00 PM »
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Hi,
Maybe this link will be useful: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/reviews/lenses/400-do.shtml
Jean-Michel
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NancyP
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« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2013, 03:36:38 PM »
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Again, what is your expectation concerning image quality, amount of noise acceptable, etc? As an amateur bird photographer, I don't NEED the ultimate image quality, and might be much happier boosting the ISO and hiking with my 1.25 kg Canon 400mm f/5.6L if I am also carrying another 25 to 30 pounds of camera, tripod/head, camping gear, food, water on a longer distance multi day hike. If I hoped to sell images, I guess that I would just suck it up and take a 4 kg faster longer lens instead.
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Robert DeCandido PhD
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« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2013, 04:49:51 PM »
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If you want to go with a sharp 400mm lens and IS...I would get the new Nikon 100-400 with VR. I used it for a few days this past summer and was very impressed (body was the Nikon 7100 - also very very good...much better than Canon 7D).

Anyway, in this portfolio (scroll halfway down the page) are many birds in flight images:

http://photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=714849

Here is one with the 400 DO and Canon 5D Mark II: http://photo.net/photodb/photo?photo_id=10177501

since 2009 (my first year here), I have replaced all the other 400 F4 DO images with photos taken with the 500 F4 and now the 800 F5.6. Next year I might move to the new 600 F4 (version II) because of the greater flexibility...that extra f-stop and the ability to add a TC (and not lose focus speed/image quality - many are writing this in their reviews) is intriguing...

The extra reach of the 500 F4 (and even the additional weight ) is worth it...image quality is better. (This is also tough to see in a 72dpi jpeg on the web). However, it does depend on what you are shooting for: newspaper? Then any lens is fine...for large prints? then the difference between the two lenses is important...For most (99%) people, they could not see a difference between the images produced by either lens. And if the truth be told, if you have a good image - no one is going to say the color or sharpness or whatever is keeping them from appreciating that image...people see the content (as well as the overall color or tone)...so if the same image is not taken with the two lenses and placed side by side - I doubt most people would ever know...

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DaveCurtis
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« Reply #9 on: October 05, 2013, 10:06:47 PM »
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I have been shooting wildlife for several years with the 400mm DO and highly recommend it. I have used it with 1DS3 and now the 5D3. When weight is an issue this lens is a great choice. Great AF and very sharp and most importantly for me the lens is hand-holdable.
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Robert DeCandido PhD
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« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2013, 03:27:26 PM »
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Here is exactly what you need... from the FM (Fred Miranda) forum (Canon section):

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1245644
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dbolt
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« Reply #11 on: October 07, 2013, 08:21:29 AM »
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I've had mine for several years and like it a lot.  Before buying a lens to carry while birding (plus binocs and usually a spotting scope on tripod), I considered weight, sharpness and IS.  The f5.6, 400 and f2.8, 300 were sharpest.  f5.6 didn't have IS.  So, the D0 won out because it was certainly sharp enough, fast enough, long enough, light enough, and had IS.  Sometimes I have second thoughts about not getting the f5.6, but that is mainly due to the cost difference.  I'm happy with the trade-offs.
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Doug Bolt
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Robert-Peter Westphal
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« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2013, 02:46:55 AM »
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Hello all !

Many thanks for all your very interesting answers ! To be honest, I'm still confused about this topic and I think I will try to get one on loan for a personal testing. There are so many opinions on this lens, and especially the combination with TC divides the user in two, so I think I will have to make my own experience with this lens.

Best wishes Robert
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