Canon 100-400 L doesn't like filters

Started Jul 24, 2011 | Discussions thread
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tsp1965 New Member • Posts: 6
Canon 100-400 L doesn't like filters


I've had a Canon 100-400 L for a year or so and love except that it goes all soft-focus on me as soon as I put a filter on it. No filter, it's pin sharp. Put even a Hoya Pro 1 UV filter on it and the results are dreadful, literally unusable. The first filter I put on it was one I bought on eBay and it turned out to be a fake, so I thought a genuine one would fix the problem, but it doesn't.

I can't find any reference on the web to others having this problem - has anyone here had it?

Yes, I can not use filters, but with a $1500 lens I want something on there to prevent accidental damage.

The photography I do is mainly airshows and motor sports. A couple of weeks back I went to the British Grand Prix. On day one I had it set to stabiliser mode 2 and with a filter and the results were awful. For day two, having looked at my shots, I took the filter off and turned off the stabiliser and everything was good. I thought it must have been the stabiliser, but this weekend I went to a classic event and all my pics were soft, but I had put the filter back on.

I have attached a sample bad image. As you can see, it is a weird effect, almost like soft focus (rather than motion blur) and every shot is affected. It is worst when the cars are coming towards you - photos panning sideways on are not so bad. If it was technique I'd expect some good and some bad, but as I have been successfully doing shots like these for years, I don't think technique is to blame.

It is very strange, can anyone offer guidance please?



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