Telephoto solution needed

Started Dec 4, 2012 | Discussions thread
Schnapper Contributing Member • Posts: 993
Re: Telephoto solution needed

Martin Muehlemann wrote:

I am looking for a solution to get beyond 400mm

Currently I am having the 70-200L II with Extender 2x. This gives me 400mm. Unfortunately, at airshows, I mostly require more than this. 500+ would be nice to have. The solution must be fast focusing and reach a decent level of sharpness, comparable to the one from my current combo. Max 2500 bucks.

I am considering the following lenses

400L 5.6 with extender 1.4x
Sigma 50-500 OS HSM
Sigma 120-300 with extender 2x

Which one would you go with? What alternatives would you consider?




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Canon EOS 5D III | EF 24-70L II | EF 70-200L IS II USM | EF 1.4x II | EF 2x II |Speedlite 270EX

The 400/5.6 won't autofocus with anything but a 1D series unless you tape the pins (or get a non-reporting extender), as the 5D, 7D, and lower series cameras only AF with lenses with reported maximum aperture of f/5.6 or larger (unless you are using contrast detect AF, which wouldn't be characterized as "fast focusing" by most people). I think I remember reading a thread where someone said that they could get AF at f8 with stacked teleconverters on their 70-200/2.8 (I think when they're stacked, only the teleconverter that is closest to the lens is reported to the camera when it comes to aperture and focal length reporting), but it wasn't great.

The Sigma 120-300 with 2X probably is your best bet if you want to get to 600 mm, but I have no idea what the IQ looks like with that lens, especially with a 2X extender, or how fast it would focus.

Another option to get you slighly past where you are is a 300/4 with 1.4x extender, but that only gets you to 420mm so

Actually, your best bet is probably to supplement your 5D III with a 7D (I'm always looking for an excuse to get more gear) and use it with the 70-200/2.8 IS II with 2x teleconverter. As the sensel density of the 7D is greater than the 5D III, it will give you more "effective reach" by cropping some for you (if you were to crop the images from your 5D III to the APS-C size sensor you'd have less pixels remaining in your cropped image than you'd have with a 7D).

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