Conflicted - 500mm II, 600mm II or 200-400 w/1.4x

Started Jun 18, 2013 | Discussions thread
ForumParentFirstPreviousNextNext unread
Flat view
David M. Anglin
Regular MemberPosts: 474Gear list
Like?
Conflicted - 500mm II, 600mm II or 200-400 w/1.4x
Jun 18, 2013

I am retiring this year and have plans to purchase one of the big white lenses.  I am NOT a birder, will mainly use the lens for wildlife in Yellowstone, Smokey Mountain National Park and African Safaris. At the cost, I can only justify one of the lenses and want the optimal solution.  I know all of these lenses provide a great tool for my photography but I would like to hear some other options.

My current gear:

EOS 5d MIII

17-40 f4 L

24-70 f2.8 L II

70-200 f2.8 L IS II

100-400 f4.5 - 5.6 L IS

300 f4 L IS

50mm, 85mm, 100mm non L primes

New gear I will add or update

EOS 7d MII when available (sold my old 7d in anticipation)

100-400 f4?-5.6 L if updated as rumored - sell my old 100-400.

Big White thoughts

500mm f4 L IS II - I have used the I version of this lens in Yellowstone and loved the weight/versatility/results.  It also worked great with the 1.4x TC.  I love the fact this lens at 7lbs is 1 1/2 lbs lighter than the I version.  This was the lens of choice for me until a pro friend suggested that I look at the 600mm II and the 200-400 was announced.

600mm f4 L IS II I had the I version of this lens and it was a beast.  I kept it about two years and sold it  after a hauling it around Yellowstone.  The new version at 8.65 pounds sounds great (close to the old 500 I version) but it is still 1.5 pounds heavier than the new 500 II.  I love the additional reach but worry that the additional weight will get old.

200mm- 400mm f4-5.6 L w/1.4x.  I love the versatility of this lens but feel it would be too short on a full frame body even with the 1.4x extender.  This lens would give you new creativity options with the ability to zoom and flip to the TC.  I understand the resolution is very good with the TC, but feel it would be a waste to try stacking another TC to get more reach.  I have the 100-400 and will upgrade to the new version if I don't purchase the 200-400.  I expect a new 100-400 would be significantly improved over the original and the only downside would be having to add the 1.4 when needed.

I know all of the lenses would be great, but I am curious if other have been done this path and would appreciate the basis for their choice.  I am leaning towards the 500 II with an upgrade to the 100-400 when available.

Thanks for comments.

 David M. Anglin's gear list:David M. Anglin's gear list
Canon PowerShot G15 Canon EOS-1D X Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Canon Extender EF 1.4x III Canon Extender EF 2x III +2 more
Canon EOS 5D Canon EOS 7D
If you believe there are incorrect tags, please send us this post using our feedback form.
ForumParentFirstPreviousNextNext unread
Flat view
Post (hide subjects)Posted by
ForumParentFirstPreviousNextNext unread
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark post MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow