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Author Topic: OPINIONS on 28-300mm L Canon  (Read 2769 times)
DonWeston
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« on: September 23, 2005, 09:38:36 AM »
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I know this is one heavy mother of a lens, pardon my language, but am looking for a top quality do it all lens, for family trips to Disney etc. Also if I go to zoos and similar. Already have 17-40, 70-200/4L and 24-60/2.8, with 50 and 105mm macros. There are times when changing lenses is not desirable, does this lens come close to the zooms I already have in quality? Is it significantly better than the 70-300 Do IS, which I was interested in until I read the negative reports, Mike's use and report not withstanding, even some of his shots at least on the monitor do not look too sharp, too bad would love to have the lighter load. Anyway, how is this big lens???
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Jonathan Wienke
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« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2005, 11:22:24 AM »
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The 28-300 is not as good as the L glass you have, but is far better than the consumer-grade coke bottles. If you're not happy with the 70-300 DO, you may not like the 28-300. But that's the price you pay for the convenience of the focal range.
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DonWeston
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« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2005, 02:36:12 PM »
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any other suggestions, or choices?? use the 70-200/4 L with a 1.4 ext, or 300mm L IS, or 100-400mmL , or trade up to a 70-200IS L and use a 2x or 1.4?Huh TIA, Don
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jani
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« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2005, 07:23:28 PM »
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Quote
any other suggestions, or choices?? use the 70-200/4 L with a 1.4 ext, or 300mm L IS, or 100-400mmL , or trade up to a 70-200IS L and use a 2x or 1.4?Huh TIA, Don
Since you already have the 70-200 f/4L, I'd suggest that you get the 1.4x Extender II.

It will place stringent demands on your technique (f/5.6 as maximum aperture, and you'll need really short exposures), but it adds some of the flexibility you want.

However, it takes a few seconds to mount and unmount it.

I use the 70-200 f/2.8L IS with and without the 1.4x Extender II, and while it's lovely to work with, it's also pretty hefty, so I don't exactly consider it a walk-around combination.

But take another look at the 70-300 DO IS. If Michael can take usable shots with it, it should be possible for others, too.
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Jan
DonWeston
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« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2005, 03:48:21 PM »
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Thanks Jani, I am sort of leaning this way for now in the short term anyway. Adding the 1.4x converter is cheap and lightweight solution for me. The 70-300 DO gets universally mediocre reviews by users on Fred Miranda's site, even later models seem not to have improved, and for what it costs, there does not seem to be much of a used market or demand. I would be the last one to disagree with Michael, but he could have just gotten a better sample then many out there. It is really too bad, and I will wait and see for now, maybe the newer 70-300 IS USM will get better reviews, if it does Canon may have to come out with an updated DO model for me to rethink its purchase. While I prefer prime lenses for working in more controlled locations or from the car, zooms have a place and time too. I am a bit disappointed John feels so poorly about the 100-400L and may end up with a 300-400 prime in this range eventually, but if I go on a safari in the future even that may have to be rethought. Truth be it known of all the lenses I own currently, only the 50mm and 105mm macros and 70-200/4L do I feel are currently sufficently sharp. The 17-40 has more inconsistent results, seem to work well in front lit scenes but not so good in shade etc, probably due to lower contrast issues. Once I decide on the 5D vs 1DII, I will probably add a 20 or 24mm prime lens, and just settle for a 20[or24], 50mm, 105, and 70-200 kit and hope that down the road Canon updates some its lineup.
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kenstrain
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« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2005, 02:57:11 AM »
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Don,
the 70-300 DO has good and bad points.  I have seen great results from 2 of them (my own, and a friend's, - plus Michael's less directly).  As you have seen, it attracts mixed reviews.  I believe there are 4 main causes for the "poor" ones -  
1) it lacks resolution compared to some heavier lenses when tested for resolution at 200-300mm  around f5.6
2) its point spread function is different from most lenses, so it requires different sharpening for best results - I guess many miss that, or do not understand the difference between sharpness and resolution
3) it is fast to use, and therefore, easy to make mistakes (focus, shake): a heavier lens would be more often used on a tripod
4) probably there is the usual production spread, damage etc. that leads to some poor examples.
On the last point, because every example I have seen results from gives pretty good quality, I find it hard to believe there are "special" ones.  I guess mine and my friend's are just as good as Michael's.  Of course there will be poor ones, when there are so many tolerances involved, each of which can make performance worse if out of spec. It is, however, very unlikely that errors come together in such a way as to produce an unusually good example.

Why do I bother to say this?
My DO has revolutionised my photography, adding a new dimension, on returning from photographic outings, I often find that ~70% of images have been taken with it.

I would have said that for zoo trips etc., in places where it sounds that light will often be plentiful, the DO is OK. Depends a bit what else you want it for.  (I always use my 70-200 f4 with a tripod, sometimes I use the DO handheld, what freedom!)  
The 70-200 f4 with 1.4x (which I have) is a touch better at f5.6 than the DO, but if handheld you can set the DO to f8, similar sharpness, and still have less shake, if you can tolerate the extra depth of field.  
Have fun either way.
Ken
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DonWeston
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« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2005, 07:28:16 AM »
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Ken - thanks, you have made some good points and real life ones to boot. I got back about a month ago from an Alaskan trip and was very pleased with my 70-200/4L but wished it was longer at times. I find often that its images do not need as much sharpening as some other lenses. If this is all that separates the two lenses and some or all of the difference can be made up for in PP then it would be worth another look, alone for its size and range. I am concerned that for the money I might get a "poorer" sample cause so many have not been so happy with its results. Can so many not truly know how to optomize their results? Or learn after their "investment"? When ever I am able to I shoot the 70-200 on a tripod, it is optimal, but there are times that this is either not possible or undesirable, and the DO would make things better. There is NO perfect lens or situation and having a lens of the DO's configuration and specs would be a plus. I guess if I need another fstop, with the digital world and Canon's in particular, one can always bump ISO and stop down another stop. With the IS this can be a better option. Thanks, I wish one of the local stores had a sample in stock, may have to go into NYC and check it out, Don
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Yakim Peled
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« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2005, 03:40:51 AM »
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If I was "looking for a top quality do it all lens" I'd get this one. Then again, I am not..... :-)
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Happy shooting,
Yakim.
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