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Old 20th of October 2005 (Thu)   #1
slicendice
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Default Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

I guess the bottom line is that the 100-400 is going to be better, being L and all that.....but I was wondering if anyone had any experience with both of these lenses? The 100-400 obviously costs a lot more than the 70-300....is the difference in image quality proportionally the same too?

I have had a bonus of sorts from work and whilst it would cover the cost of a 100-400, it is still (by my standards anyway!) a LOT of money to lay down on a lens. I guess my question really stems from the "sensible" part of my brain that mutters "can you really justify spending that much on a lens?!?". (Admittedly it is not a part of my brain that does get over-worked!)

Comments/thoughts appreciated....!

(I guess I should mention that by 70-300 I mean the new DO IS 70-300!)
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Old 20th of October 2005 (Thu)   #2
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Well if you wait a couple of days I will be able to answer that question for you. I am replacing my 70-300 DO with a 100-400. My reason for doing this is because I am interested in shooting wildlife and 300 is too short so I wanted the extra mm's. I was very very happy with the image quality of the DO even at 300mm so I am very keen to see how the two lenses compare in the overlapping focal lengths. My 100-400 should arrive for the weekend so watch this space and I'll post some example shots.
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Old 20th of October 2005 (Thu)   #3
slicendice
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Thanks nitsch....I look forwards to seeing the results from your neeeew 100-400!!
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Old 22nd of October 2005 (Sat)   #4
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Hi Slicendice, I had written a fairly long post for you but I messed something up in IE and lost it all!!!

Seeing as it's late I haven't the energy to write it all again so here is a summary which hopefully tells you all you need to know!

The DO wins hands down on portablity, the 100-400 is quite a chunky beast - I definately notice the extra size/weight in my backpack.

Build quality - nothing to choose between the two, both are beautifully made and very solid with metal bodies.

Image quality - at 400mm the 100-400 is fractionally sharper than the DO is at 300mm, there is hardly anything in it though, both are very good. The 100-400 gets a bit sharper as you back away from 400mm so it has the edge over the DO in the overlapping focal lengths. The DO has the advantage of going to 70mm on the wide end - 70mm versus 100mm doesn't sound much but it can be useful.

IS - The DO has second gen IS which is noticeabley more effective than the 1st gen IS on the 100-400 (it still works well though and is worth having).

Focusing - Both focus very quickly, quietly and accurately however the 100-400 seems to hunt more than the DO in low light.

Zoooom - I actually really like the 'controversial' push pull zoom on the 100-400, it works really well and is the ideal mechanism for a lens with this focal length. The zoom ring on the 70-300 is very heavy - you really feel like you are shifting some serious chunks of glass about!

I am already in love with the 100-400 after just 24 hours but I think it is going to have a slightly longer learning curve than any other lens I have previously owned to get the best out of it. I got the 100-400 purely for the extra length as I want to do more wildlife shooting. The DO has gone to a new home but I really wanted to be able to keep it too.

Both lenses are great, the 100-400 has the optical edge but you pay the price in size and weight. I would say on balance if you don't need the extra mm's above 300mm then definately go for the 70-300 DO it's just far more practical for everyday use, only get the 100-400 if you need that extra range. Remember that all of this is just my opinion and is based on just the one copy of each lens that I have owned, if you try them both for yourself you may decide differently so I would recommend you do this before making your decision.

Hope this helps!
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Old 25th of October 2005 (Tue)   #5
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Thanks Nick....some v helpful information there!I shall have to check my plastic and see how generous it feels...!

If you have any pics from your new 100-400 I'd love to see
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Old 25th of October 2005 (Tue)   #6
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

No worries Slicendice, glad some of it was useful.

There's some of my first shots with the 100-400 here : http://www.photography-on-the.net/fo...d.php?t=107515 .
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Old 25th of October 2005 (Tue)   #7
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

My next lens with be a 100-400 L can not wait. X mas is coming
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Old 25th of October 2005 (Tue)   #8
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

It's not just that the lens is an L, and that's why its better, Canon has done a really horrible job with the 70,75-300 focal length. Although people do like the 70-300 DO because its light. Its about the only one from those like 5 lens that people really like.

But if you need that 200-400 focal length badly, go for the 100-400. If you think you'll do a lot of under 200, you should go with the Sigma 70-200 2.8, Canon 70-200 2.8, Canon 70-200 f/4
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Old 26th of October 2005 (Wed)   #9
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Quote:
Originally Posted by nitsch
No worries Slicendice, glad some of it was useful.

There's some of my first shots with the 100-400 here : http://www.photography-on-the.net/fo...d.php?t=107515 .
WOW!! Now that is one sweet lens!!

Oh dear....I feel some imminent credit card melt-down heading this way!
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Old 26th of October 2005 (Wed)   #10
ron chappel
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Default Re: Canon 70-300 vs Canon 100-400

Quote:
Originally Posted by nitsch
Hi Slicendice, I had written a fairly long post for you but I messed something up in IE and lost it all!!!
Man i feel for you!Isn't it one of lifes most irritating moments?
Thanks for the review!
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