wanted:opinions on ef.2.0x III teleconverter


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Jun 10, 2013
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hey guys, wanted to know if anyone has or has used either of the canon teleconverters. there both $499. either the 1.4x ef extender or the ef 2.0x III teleconverter. im using a 60d and the lense id be using it with is the EF 70-200mm F/2.8 II USM.
i was at delmar the other day and couldnt get close to where i wanted to shoot from so, would like opinions on either of these two extenders
The 70-200mm f2.8 IS L MII is an outstanding zoom lens and one of the handful that can take a 2*teleconverter and preform to a good standard. Many others zooms (even the previous version of the 70-200mm f2.8 IS L) simply take too much of an image quality hit with a 2*TC to be worth using it on for anything beyond a record shot.

The performance of the 70-200mm f2.8 IS L MII plus a 2*TC MII is about in line with a Canon 100-400mm IS L lens (the latter lens does have the edge in side by side un-edited test shots, however its only a very slight lead and after editing its very hard to impossible to tell results apart).
You will see the image quality take a hit, however if you stop down to around f7.1 or f8 you'll get a very usable level of image quality from the combo (remember the lens will already be a 140-400mm f5.6 lens so that is only one stop down from wide open). It's a combo I use myself and its a great setup for giving you some good quality reach all from a single lens.

The 1.4TC works fantastically well and honestly even on the previous version of the lens you could hardly tell from the image quality that the 1.4TC is attached and the MII its even harder.

So the 1.4TC can work without any problems at all, giving you a nice boost to range whilst hardly affecting the image quality. The 2*TC will give you a noticeable drop, but the resulting photos are still very usable and up to a high standard. For a cheap way to make the 70-200mm MII into a more versatile lens its a great option if you need the range.

The only real full weakness is that the maximum aperture is f5.6 with the 2*TC and the maximum ideal aperture is around f7.1-f8. Now at 400mm that isn't uncommon to use those apertures even when one has access to wider aperture lenses like the 400mm f2.8 since depth of field is an important consideration - however it clearly leaves you with less options in lower light conditions.

Note that the MIII teleconverters are a general improvement over the MII, however it is not a night and day difference and much of the improvement is in the corners; something that you'll notice a bit less with a crop sensor camera since much of those corner zones are already cropped off in the shot. So MII or MIII teleconverters will work great.
OVER: almost sounds like you think the 1.4 might be plenty, and would have less unedited issues then the 2.0..there the same price so cost doesnt matter..would that be an accurate assessment?
Think about what a 1.4x converter actually yields: it gives you a top end of 280mm. With a one-f/stop light loss, and an image quality loss.

ALL of the other focal lengths also suffer a one-stop light loss, and somewhat degraded image quality.

You get a 98-280mm zoom range with the 1.4x added. But the thing is...98mm with the TC on there is one stop slower, and also image-degraded, as compared to 98mm with the bare lens.

When you actually have a 1.4x TC on a 70-200, you are gaining NOTHING, and losing a lot, over the majority of the zoom's entire range. Every single zoom setting from 70mm to 143mm on the lens is BETTER, and faster, without the teleconverter on the lens.
Ahh but Derrel you don't add a teleconverter for the short end, you add it for the long end - I've personally found the 1.4TC works well on the 200mm as you can see the difference between 200mm and 280mm and when you want that little bit more its worth it; whilst still being able to zoom back to very usable shorter focal lengths.

That said 280mm is nothing like the 400mm that the 2*TC gives you. If you need that range then the 2*TC is what you need; every test I've seen shows that you get superior image quality using a teleconverter instead of cropping to get the same image. That said that assumes a good exposure; the loss of 2 stops of light can be a problem; but on the flipside getting those stops back with a high quality lens (ergo a 400mm f2.8) is very expensive (and also very heavy!)
That's my point...the 1.4x teleconverter is in the way and a detriment MOST of the time...you need to REMOVE it all the freaking time. That's why a 1.4x teleconverter (I own two 1.4x AF-s models) is seldom ever used with a zoom lens....it's not as good as my 300/4 or 300/2.8, and it impairs every single focal length and loses aperture over the vast majority of the 70-200's range.

And the additional length of 280mm versus 200mm is paltry...might just as well CROP in-camera with a modern, high-MP sensor, and get a better image, with better optical performance, and no loss of lens aperture.

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