Thoughts on new 80-400 vs great super teles (even Canon side)?

Started Apr 19, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Thoughts on new 80-400 vs great super teles (even Canon side)?
Apr 19, 2013

This is a strange academic question for folks who have used some very good to great telephotos and the new Nikon 80-400 - how does the new 80-400 VR at 400mm compare to those lenses? The comparison can be arbitrary - based on what you remember - and can be roughly on a grade scale 1-10 with the new 80-400 arbitrarily graded as say 7. Or the comparison could be very subjective - lots of words.

So some lenses I would like as comparison purposes (parenthesis will mention why the comparison may be useful):

1) Nikon 500mm f/4 AF-S whichever version you may have used (because 400 and 500 are close - and 500 is "comparatively" light super tele - particularly the AF-S II version with no VR around 3400 g)

2) Nikon 200-400 f/4 whichever version you may have used (because both can go to 400mm - and people do justify the new 80-400 by saying at least its way cheaper & lighter than 200-400 - but don't mention whether the 200-400 is significantly better)

3) Nikon 300 f/2.8 VR (say II) + TC 1.4 (because its 420mm equivalent which is nearly same view as 400mm and one of the "lighter" exotic options)

4) Canon 400mm f/4 DO IS (this is an interesting comparison because weight wise the Canon 400mm f/4.0 DO IS is just 1.94 kg vs 1.59 kg for the new 80-400mm)

5) Canon 400mm f/5.6L  (again this is an interesting comparison because weight wise the Canon 400mm f/5.6 is just 1.25 kg vs 1.59 kg for the new 80-400mm; because Canon 400mm f/5.6L is very well regarded even compared to exotic telephoto lenses - and because you could get a Canon 7D + 400mm f/5.6L for the price of the new 80-400mm)

Not included above is Nikon 300mm f/4 AF-S + 1.4 teleconverter - mainly because many folks have already talked about this comparison. Most of the comparisons above are ignoring the price difference (except the last one - Canon 500mm f/5.6L)

You can also add the older Canon 500mm f/4.5L or Sigma 500mm f/4.5 to the mix if you prefer.

Again this is an academic question - not too much practical considerations.

 whoosh1's gear list:whoosh1's gear list
Nikon D800E Nikon D810 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm F4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8G ED Nikon AF-S Nikkor 50mm f/1.4G +13 more
Canon EOS 7D
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