Canon EF 70-200mm F/4.0 L USM

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by GreenSlime89, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. GreenSlime89

    GreenSlime89 TPF Noob!

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    I saw this in Jessops today, I was fully aware of it when I was looking at the Sigma 70-200mm F/2.8 EX DG HSM Macro but I sure as hell didn't know about this L lens!
    I am now torn between these two lenses. On one hand the Canon lens is cheaper and lighter. It's got great image quality. An aperture of F/4 throughout. Very little lens distortion.
    But the Sigma has an aperture of F/2.8. Cheap for a F/2.8 telephoto. The lens collar included.
    They both have great reviews but I'm now looking to get the Canon lens as I can afford it sooner and it's still got great IQ.
    I could probably afford it by April or May of next year, possibly sooner. If I go for the Sigma, I would have to wait about two months more. I'm desperate for another lens as I've only got a 50mm F/1.8 (a great lens, but I'm getting bored with the same focal length all the time) I want to get into wildlife photography and when I'm holiday I want to have a lens where I can take shots without people knowing about it. (I'm not a pervert but I asked people if I could take there photo and they don't look natural)

    Can you help me decide what to go for?
     
  2. Don Simon

    Don Simon TPF Noob!

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    I am not a Canon user, but I was looking for the same Sigma, and out of curiosity I tried both the Sigma and Canon 70-200 f/2.8s. The Canon certainly feels a higher build quality overall, but that is not to say that the Sigma feels poorly built at all - it's solid and feels like you are easily getting your money's worth. I did also look at another Sigma which was several years old and had obviously been used a lot in those years, and operationally it was still almost perfect, with the one exception of the zoom ring being not quite as smooth as when new. If the Canon f/4 is as well built as their f/2.8 then I am fairly sure doubt the Canon will withstand more drops or knocks than the Sigma - but then just how poorly do you plan to treat your expensive lens?

    In terms of image quality, the Sigma is excellent and entirely useable wide-open. The Canon f/4 may be a bit better but is of course that bit slower, so you'd need to consider your priorities there.

    One concern is lens compatibility, future Canon bodies may not be compatible with the Sigma, whereas this should be guaranteed and presumably tested with the Canon lens. On the other hand a Sigma lens can be 're-chipped'; I seem to remember them offering this service free for flashes at one point; while it surely won't be free for the lens I doubt it would be hugely expensive either. Anyway this is a potential problem rather than a certainty.

    Personally I think if you feel the need for the extra speed then the Sigma would be the way to go. I ordered one for that reason. On the other hand if you are happy with f/4 then the Canon would seem the obvious choice, being cheaper and lighter - a much more sensible option for carrying around all day - and of course the reassurance of buying 'own-brand'. You already said you are leaning towards the Canon so you might as well stick with that; after all it will keep its value very well so if you decide it's too slow you could trade it in without losing much.
     
  3. keith204

    keith204 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have the Sigma 2.8 70-200 DG EX HSM Macro. When I purchased this lens, I wasn't sure if I would utilize the 2.8 much, but it ends up, that I can't do without it. You'd be surprised what the larger aperture can allow you to do in low light situations.

    The build quality is better than any lens I own (doen't say much) but it feels VERY solid. The image is crisp and clear. Excellent image quality.

    I like the black.. doesn't stand out too much.

    Now, I haven't compared the two. So I can't speak for the Canon. However, I can say that the Sigma quality (image and physical) seems GREAT, and also the larger aperture is GREAT.
     
  4. Becky

    Becky TPF Noob!

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    I have the Canon, its a typical high quality L lens which produces great results but depending on subject you may prefer a faster f2.8 lens. This is not a great lens in low light and wont be great as a serious wildlife lens where you may want a faster lens with closer range, further to that IS would be a significant benefit... there is an IS version also. I personally plan to upgrade to the IS version or more likely the f2.8 IS version at some point. Saying that, if you don't need f2.8, or IS, the 70-200mm f4 could be a good and affordable choice.
     
  5. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    I have the f4 and love it. I've used it for out door sports, a bit of nature, and mainly portraits. It has been serving me extremely well
     
  6. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The Canon 70-200mm f4L (IS or non-IS) is a wonderfully sharp lens and very compact. This is a good walk around lens. Its main advantage over the Canon 70-200mm f2.8L as well as the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 is its size and weight. The Canon 70-200mm f4L is practically half the weight 2/3rds the size. The f2.8 zooms (1310g and 1380g) are pretty darn heavy if you plan on packing them for long periods of time.... not enjoyable at all if it sits at home or on your aching back.

    If low-light is your concern, you are far better off with a fast prime with a max aperture of f1.4 or f1.8 (even a wide angle 35mm f2 is pretty darn easy to hand hold in low loight). The advantage is the fast aperture, compact size, and relatively low prices. You can pack both the 70-200 f4L (non-IS) AND 50mm f1.4 (I prefer 35mm on full frame) for about the same cost as the sigma.

    I like shooting low light.... f2.8 in a telephoto zoom is still pretty darn limiting.
     
  7. soylentgreen

    soylentgreen TPF Noob!

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    I haven't ventured to other brands, so I can't help you with the Sigma. I am sure they make quality products since I see many other photographers in the club use them. The Canon 70-200 f/4 L is an excellent lens for the price you pay for it. I owned one and absolutley loved it. As a nature photo lens, it was indispensible. Especially for one that wants excellent image quality, but does not have the money for the higher quality primes and zooms. It's light enough that you can still handhold static shots down to 1/30; and even 1/15, with no problems. Something I can attest that I cannot do with my current 70-200 f/2.8 IS with the IS turned off! Freakin' lens is a cinder block! Anyway, a monopod will help steady shots in this area. Somewhat cumbersome at times, but you get use to it.
     
  8. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Hehehee.... lol... nicely said and too the point. Can I quote you on the other thread also talking about the same topic?
     
  9. soylentgreen

    soylentgreen TPF Noob!

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    Sure. Why not. Don't get me wrong, it's a great lens. But for $1700 you figure they could shave some wieght off by using titanium or carbon fiber. Just a suggestion. Good news is that after a day of shooting with it, I do not need to go to the gym. :)
     
  10. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    the 70-200 f/4 is an incredible peice of glass. If Nikon made an AF-S 70-200 f/4 VR, i'd get rid of my 80-200 f/2.8 and get the f/4 in an instant. The size would be smaller, I don't usually shoot at f/2.8 with it anyway, and the focusing would be much quicker and silent.

    Last studio portrait session I had, when my 80-200 clicked into the AF, my subject thought I broke my gear and it made him nervous because it's so loud. not good.
     
  11. S2K1

    S2K1 TPF Noob!

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    I've used this lens for a couple of months with my 30D and I love it. It's light enough that I can hand-hold it and still get great shots without the IS. Sometimes I wish I would've gone to the f/2.8L, but the f/4L works fine in 90% of the situations I would use this lens for.
     

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