Between 300mm f4, 70-200mm f2.8 and 80-400mm which one would you choose and why?

Started 5 months ago | Discussions thread
OP Dibyendu Majumdar Contributing Member • Posts: 766
Re: My Thoughts on the 3 lenses

Windancer wrote:

Dibyendu Majumdar wrote:

I am thinking of:

  • 300mm f4 PF.
  • 70-200mm f2.8 FL.
  • 80-400mm f4.5-5.6 AFS.

As someone who has owned all of them at one point or another I agree with the very early posts, really depends what you will be shooting. All are very sharp lenses and are worth having.

I have replaced my 300/4 with A 300/2.8, i still have my 70-200/2.8 but since I have gotten rid of my 80-400.

I have considered older 300mm f2.8 - even manual versions. Problem is I think these lenses get heavily used and knocked about so I can't trust used equipment when it comes to pricey lenses. And new ones I cannot justify buying.

First off the 300/4 is a super lens but it has it's restrictions. For birding the 300 is too short and the F4 really doesn't cut it. Even my huge 300/2.8 is too short although works much better with a 2x TC. I do use the 70-200/2.8 a lot mainly for the reason you mentioned "Speed" and is a very sharp lens. I would never get rid of it.

Yes that is why I thought 70-200 is best compromise. It is fast and super optically. So I can potentially get longer reach just by cropping to DX format anyway.  I understand that TC combo (1.4x III) however makes it worse than the 80-400 or 300mm prime.

The 80-400 is a fine lens but older, somewhat slower and something I personally don't like a variable aperture. Just me though....

Once again it all comes down to what you want it for. As I said 300 is a little short IMO for birding, the 80-200 does have some speed for shooting larger mammals, landscapes etc. The 80-400 is longer but slower. It all comes down to what you want to do with it.

Just my thoughts......

Thank you for sharing.

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