Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11

Started May 20, 2012 | Discussions
garyknrd
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Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
May 20, 2012

A quick test between the mark 1 vs mark 11 300mm f2.8 lens.

All shot with the Canon 7d then 100% cropped. Tripod, mirror lock up, 2 sec. Best of three of each. this is with and without the 1.4 x 11 T.C. not the 111.

Conclusion. If you only need center sharpness only, it is not worth it at all in my eyes. If using FF or filling the frame with BiF or whatever then the 11 is worth it.
Actually I see no difference? But I will leave it up to you.

I did this for two reasons. First I wanted to know how it compared against my current copy of the 300 IS. Second I wanted to check if it was worth the upgrade to the new 500. I have the funds but really wasn't sure it it was a good trade.

As of this test. I tell you now. I WILL NOT MOVE TO THE new 500 for birding. My 500 is so sharp it is amazing.

The new 300mm lens with the 1.4 and the better edge sharpness is a greeeeeat lens for birding and BiF. Equal to the 500 in sharpness in my opinion. But the trade for long lens just for weight for me is not worth it.

My opinion only. But all my shots with the 500 are mainly tripod with the occasional hand held BIF shots. And 1.5lbs. Is not going to kill me.

Take a look if you want. I will leave them up for a few days.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/avianphotos

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Apewithacamera
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For many decades the Canon 300mm has maintained a solid reputation
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

for being optically excellent.
Camera Canon EOS-1D Mark IV
Exposure 0.001 sec (1/1250)
Aperture f/2.8
Focal Length 300 mm

My 300 2.8 IS is a bit heavier and has just a couple stops less IS ability vs the newest 300mm and that is about all IMO. I've no plans to sell mine to upgrade.

Thanks for doing the test.

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mmullen
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

garyknrd wrote:

A quick test between the mark 1 vs mark 11 300mm f2.8 lens.
All shot with the Canon 7d then 100% cropped. Tripod, mirror lock up, 2 sec.

300mm f/2.8 IS II looks like it has more contrast and better sharpness. Worth it? That depends upon individual needs and wants.

I did this for two reasons. First I wanted to know how it compared against my current copy of the 300 IS. Second I wanted to check if it was worth the upgrade to the new 500.

I fail to see how the performance of the new 300mm f/2.8 IS II has anything to do with the yet to be released 500mm f/4 IS II??

BTW, it looks like you may have missed focus slightly with the TC shots of the 300 II.

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Mike Mullen

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garyknrd
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to mmullen, May 20, 2012

Apewithacamera, that is beautiful...

Just a quick informal test for me. I think everyone has there own needs for sure.

For birding and using center most of the time. I am not convinced. I looked at the MFD charts for both, and I think both lenses pretty much follow the curve. just as a side note, these were not sharpened in any way. When sharpened they are just reet. Unreal optics on both really.

These lenses were redesigned for FF shooters for sports. In my opinion. Not for birders.

So, the new supertele's in the 5-6 8 are out for me anyway.

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Powerdoc
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

The 300 2,8 LIS is already a stellar lens. According to the MTF curves, the edges of the new one is better, but I really don't care (note also, that the old one, is already very good in the corners, compared to most lenses).

the L2 is lighter, have a faster AF, and a more efficient IS, but I will keep my 300. For maximum sharpness I have to stop it down one time, and the results are very, very good.
Thanks for your test.
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JohnnyRX7
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

the only problem with the older one is when Canon decides to not service them anymore..
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garyknrd
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to Powerdoc, May 20, 2012

I find the exact same thing with mine. I always took mine to 4.5-5.6 for just tack sharp.I like the new one and will keep it. It just performs better. And the images just seem to pop a little more. But it is not any sharper in my opinion. The 7D is my preferred camera, so I think if you use the crop sensor it is a verrrrry hard sell. But everyone has there own opinion. I know i thought it was going to blow the old one out of the water. This one I bought did not for sure, optically anyway.

When I get back to the States I am going to do more testing for corners and if it need adj. I will bring it back to Asia to have it serviced. I live here most of the year. So easy for me.

Powerdoc wrote:

The 300 2,8 LIS is already a stellar lens. According to the MTF curves, the edges of the new one is better, but I really don't care (note also, that the old one, is already very good in the corners, compared to most lenses).

the L2 is lighter, have a faster AF, and a more efficient IS, but I will keep my 300. For maximum sharpness I have to stop it down one time, and the results are very, very good.
Thanks for your test.
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garyknrd
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

Just as a side note:

I live in Asia about 9 months a year and travel here quite a bit birding. I have met many Japanese people here that actually prefer the older lenses. And I mean the pre-IS. I talked to one extremely good photographer from Japan the other day and asked him what he thought. He just looked at me and said in Japan the 300 and the 300 IS are very famous lenses. LOL He was also using some older big glass. Some of the older folks here use Manual focus allot also. It is kinda neat to watch. Quite a bit over my head. And mix equipment also. One fellow I shot with one day was using an old 500mm 4.5. And it was extremely sharp. He was shooting birds Manual focus on another body, I don't remember the name but not Canon. Also in Japan you can get your gear calibrated and cleaned free he said. It is part of ownership.
Anyway a little trivia,

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Paul B Jones
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to garyknrd, May 20, 2012

Interesting info Gary, amazing Cardinal shot Ape.

The newer Canon IS, which I believe is on the 800 too, seems to provide more sharpness in the field under tricky conditions than the earlier version, but that is just my strong impression, no scientific testing by me.
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garyknrd
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Re: Center test 300 f2.8 1 vs. 300 f2.8 11
In reply to Paul B Jones, May 20, 2012

I think so Paul. The new one is much better than the vs l. IMO. I love the #3 mode. Amazing lens for sure.

Paul B Jones wrote:

Interesting info Gary, amazing Cardinal shot Ape.

The newer Canon IS, which I believe is on the 800 too, seems to provide more sharpness in the field under tricky conditions than the earlier version, but that is just my strong impression, no scientific testing by me.
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/paulbjones/

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