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Author Topic: Second body for Safari  (Read 2320 times)
Giedo
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« on: January 27, 2006, 05:08:55 AM »
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I want to rent a second body to shoot with besides my current 20D for a Safarishoot in Tanzania.
I'll bring the following lenses:
300 mm L F4 (non IS) + 1.4 TC
100 - 400 mm L
17 - 85 mm IS
90 mm Tamron macro

It is essential that I can shoot intuitively, so I'm not considering a complete different camera. For example a 1D or 1 Ds have differnt knobs & settings that I'm not familiar with.  So I'm considering renting another 20D or a 5D for the trip.
I heard the 5D has a similar setup as the 20D and I would love to shoot full frame for a while, but then my lenses might not be ideal. I still have a 28 - 135 mm IS that I could use for the 5D.
I want the long lenses dedicated for the 20D because of the reach (crop factor) so my other camera would be for wide angle and macro.

Any thoughts?

Tia, Giedo
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Giedo
borzynd
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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2006, 08:09:43 AM »
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With the lenses you are bringing, the 5D may be the better choice.  Here are my two main reasons.  Based on a quick handling of the camera and my use of the 20D, the 5D felt very similar to the 20D.  You probably do not want to be using a completely unfamilar camera for a trip like this.  The second reason is that you have some focal length duplication with the 100-400 and the 300 and 1.4x.  Using a second full frame body will give a lot more flexibility compositionally. Use the 300 and 1.4x converter with the 20D and the 100-400 with the 5D and I think you will get the best of both lenses.  This is more a personal preference, as if all other things are equal, flexibility tends to be more of a priority for me.

Other pros and cons:  The 5D is not the 20D, so there will be some learning involved.  Larger file sizes for the 5D, so memory may be an issue.  No cropping factor for the 5D, so your wide angle zoom will be more useful than with another 20D, as a wide angle.  Larger prints from the 5D, if that is a priority.  You may like the 5D so much that you run out and buy one after the trip (Hey, we all know that Canon needs the $3,200 far more that you do    ).

I hope this helps.
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Giedo
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« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2006, 08:32:49 AM »
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thanks borzynd,

I'm afraid indeed that I get hooked to a camera like that!
Why though use the 100 - 400 with the 5D? I thought to combine the best lenses with the best camera (tests show that the 300 mm f4 non IS with tc still is a lot sharper then the 100 - 400 zoom).
See here on photozone and here, 100 -400 test on photozone. I also read somewhere on Lum landscape that the 100 - 400 doesn't perform as good on a FF sensor. I think it was Michael himself stating that in his lens overview. So it might be better to use the 300 mm + tc on a 5D with the choices that are available to me.
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Giedo
borzynd
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« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2006, 01:36:52 PM »
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"I'm afraid indeed that I get hooked to a camera like that!
Why though use the 100 - 400 with the 5D? "

Basically, more for slightly irrational reasons than anything else.  I'd rather have the fixed focal length for the long lens (672mm as lens, converter and 20D) and the zoom for shorter focal lengths, but that is how I prefer to work.

The argument on lens quality, especially the 100-400 being as variable in build quality as it seems to be, should be carefully considered.  

You can always switch bodies if you anticipate the need to do so.

As I said above, *for me*, I would prefer the flexibility offered by the 5D as full frame body, rather than having a second 20D.

Dan Borzynski
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AJSJones
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« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2006, 02:09:24 PM »
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Note that the 17-85 will not fit the 5D since it is an EF-S lens.  In any case, you'd want to use the 5D for landscape and the 20D for longer shots 1) because landscapes need more pixels and 2) the 20D has much finer pixel-pitch and is preferred for shots where the suibject isn't as large in the frame as you'd like.  The key here is the pixels captured per height of distant object, not the crop factor per se.....

The 24-105 would be a good choice for the 5D for the wider angle or bigger animal shots.  The 28-135IS is not a bad lens, but subject to the variability in consumer zooms - some copies are good, others not.  You'll probably be able to stop down a bit and not have to crank up the ISO much, so if you like your copy and budget is an issue, go with it.  Otherwise you'll need a new lens for wide-angle on the 5D - 24 on a FF camera is pretty wide!

The 100-400 does seem to have variability : there was a recent thread at FredMiranda where many people who own it agreed it does not deserve the bad reputation it has at 400, although I've seen frequent comments , such as Michael's in his review, that say the opposite to varying degrees.  Have you compared you 100-400 at 400 with your 300 4 +1.4x for image quality (as you define that)?  Unless it's substantially better, I'd say the IS on the 100-400 would be a deciding factor if you are going to be shooting from a typical safari vehicle which is not a very steady platform!  The 300/4 is  better than the 100-400 at 300 (but worse at other FLs!) but has a nice short close-focus distance (if it's like the IS version) and would be a good "macro" option on the 5D - if you are limited in weight/kit to replace the Tamron.  Otherwise you could leave the 300 behind.

You know what your kit/weight/budget limits are, so I hope these thoughts help a little
Andy
« Last Edit: January 27, 2006, 02:11:00 PM by AJSJones » Logged
Giedo
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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2006, 03:31:38 PM »
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Dan, your way of working makes sense to me. I'll give it a thought.
Andy, I will be shooting from a vehicle but using bean bags, which provide more than sufficient support to shoot without IS. For quick out of hand shots and moving subjects with IS in mode 2, the 100 - 400 is certainly better...
And I didn't test the two lenses yet, but I certainly will soon. The tests from photozone did this comparison and in favor of the prime with tc.

Thanks again and regards,
Giedo
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Giedo
AJSJones
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« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2006, 07:35:46 PM »
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Quote
Andy, I will be shooting from a vehicle but using bean bags, which provide more than sufficient support to shoot without IS. [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=56944\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Sounds like you're on the right track.  My comment was mainly to the thought that the vehicle itself tends to move as the occupants move around and the tyres and suspension have some give - so even clamping to the vehicle doesn't guarantee stability.   Our safari vehicles were quite wobbly.   If you can keep the other occupants "stabilized" (whatever mode works for them   ) then you'll be fine.

Have fun
Andy
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