telephoto- ive narrowed it down

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by alexlang, Oct 24, 2004.

  1. alexlang

    alexlang TPF Noob!

    Sep 2, 2004
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    ok so after doing tons and tons of research on telephotos these are the four final contenders:

    Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
    Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM
    Tokina AT-X 80-200mm f/2.8
    Tokina AT-X 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6

    Im looking to use this lens for a lot of different things (considering my only other lens is a 50mm prime) including sports, wildlife, and some portrait (not studio).

    All of these lenses hae their pros and cons but PLEASE give me some advice
    I will be going to try them out soon but i wont be able to take any pictures with them

    Any advice is appreciated

  2. andycurtis

    andycurtis TPF Noob!

    Oct 25, 2004
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    Netherlands or Wyoming
    I have no personal experience with any of those lenses, but I have a Nikon 70-300 f4-5.6 and I can honestly say that the long end is MUCH too slow to handhold with slow film. If you've got a digital SLR, then it's not a problem to shoot at ISO 400 or 800, but trying to shoot slides at ISO 100 just doesn't work. I suppose the IS feature of the Canon lens would help though.

    Unless you've got a nice tripod, you're going to need a shutter speed of around 1/250 to get consistantly sharp photos at 300mm (faster on a smaller digital sensor). It's hard to get these kind of speeds at f5.6. And shooting sports, you're going to need an even faster shutter speed.

    I've heard good things about the Canon 70-200 f4.0L. That is certainly the lens I'd go for given the opportunity.
  3. MCTuomey

    MCTuomey TPF Noob!

    Oct 10, 2004
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    I recently *trialed* two 70-200mm lens, the Canon L f2.8 USM IS and the Sigma EX f2.8 HSM. I've also shot a number of rolls through the Canon 75-300mm f4-5.6 HSM. I shoot mostly youth sports, esp soccer. I don't have experience with the Tokina lenses you mention.

    Generally, if you will be shooting in variable light conditions, you will appreciate an f2.8 for its light-gathering benefit: faster shutter speeds to freeze your subject and faster AF. Also, a f2.8's bokeh is somewhat better than a f4.

    At about the same price, I'd take the Sigma EX f2.8 over the Canon L f4. Yes, this is heresy. You lose very little to nothing on optical quality with the Sigma and gain the important f-stop. You also have the option of the $175 Sigma 1.4 TC to get out to 280mm at f4, a nice thought given that 200mm is actually short for field sports.

    The reviews show that the Tokina f2.8 is good glass as well, just not rated quite as high as the Sigma EX in its class of zooms. Whether this is significant, I don't know from experience. But the equivalent Canon L f2.8 is about $400 more than the Sigma EX f2.8 - with IS the gap is nearly $1,000. Great lens, yes, but not incrementally justified IMO.

    FWIW, I bought the Sigma myself and love it so far. But I'm all amateur, of course.

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