Airplane Pictures home

Home » Forums » Aviation photography » Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mk II or Canon 100-400mm IS mk II?

Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 IS mk II or Canon 100-400mm IS mk II?

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 10 March 2018 - 22:13 CET

Hello everyone

So I'm currently thinking of getting a new lens. I currently own the Canon 70-300 IS USM L, which I'm very satified with. But I'm thinking of getting a new one.

I have the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS USM mk II in mind. Mainly for the bright aperture. I was going to use that mostly for when I'm going spotting in bad weather.

On second thought I'm thinking about the Canon 100-400mm L IS USM mk. II because it's (in my opinion) the best lens from canon. All in all superb.

I thought that I rarely go spotting in bad weather and the 70-300 L is very good but the 100-400 just has the touch more extra sharpness and the 400mm. And from what I saw from a friend, it also perfoms great in bad conditions.

The price for both lenses is affordable for me so that's no problem.

Thanks everyone for helping :)

Boytronic 

Full member
Joined in March 2015
Posts: 78
Posted 10 March 2018 - 23:15 CET

Hi Adrian,

Here's the situation; as long you use L lenses you're on the top. 70-200 especially mark II (which I own) is the Canon's flagship lens. Probably the best there is (although Nikon users will crucify me for saying that). Even when you use it with 1.4 or 2.0 extender you're still gonna have perfect sharpness and speed that no other lens can achieve. I am speaking from my own experience.

Although 100-400 is cheaper and it is not f2.8 you get exactly the same result as with 70-200 with 2.0 ext and the same aperture. I would recommend to go with 100-400 because you have 100mm wide enough if you catching a big bird from near distance and a fine close up if you need it. 70-200 (GO FOR mark II !!!) is almost 2 times more expensive but extenders are cheaper so you get the the same results ( because 70-200 is far better) when speaking about focal distance. 70-300 although is a L lens is 1 step down in quality from 100-400.

About the bad weather and iso, noise and all that....it is all about the camera body you use, sensor and stuff and finally the skill of editing and removing that unwanted problems. F2.8will not help you have main object all sharp because it is all about basic knowledge about aperture. Sometimes it is justified depending what kind of composition you are trying to achieve but 98% of times f2.8 is not needed for spotting IMO.

If you want to save money GO for 100-400mm, it is a perfect lens for spotting,get Canon ext and you're on top!

If you have a full frame pro body you'll get the results you are looking for, (even with 7D although it's 1.4 crop) some 600$ bodies won't! Developing your editing skills can help you getting PERFECT pics. All in all very simple but believe me - as I owned and own a lot of lenses (from photo to film lenses) I know the stuff. Investing an extra buck is always a winner.

Best of luck!

Boytronic

Jetzguy 

Member
Joined in July 2016
Posts: 118
Posted 11 March 2018 - 01:07 CET

Nice info Boytronic.

Karol Trojanowski 

News admin
Joined in June 2016
Posts: 63
Posted 11 March 2018 - 12:28 CET

generally, both lenses, 70-200L IS II and 100-400L IS II, offer similar (great) sharpness from corner to corner. The difference is maximum aperture and focal lengths. While 70-200 gives you a nice, wide 2,8 value, 100-400 offers quite slow value from 4,5 to even 5,6 on the longer end, but much longer focal lengths. Of course, you can attach a 2,0x extender to 70-200 to gain a 400mm, but you won't have such a quality as with 100-400L II.

Both lenses are equipped with excellent image stabilization, so you can easily take photos on about 1/80 with focal length of 400mm (100-400L II or 70-200L II with extender 2x) so it will help you somehow in poor light conditions.

I personally use 100-400L II with 6D Mark II (full frame), and I'm thinking about buying also 70-200L II just to have more flexibility, especially with extender 1,4x.

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 11 March 2018 - 12:50 CET

Thanks Boytronic and Karol for the information.

I will think a bit more of it which one I will buy. Allthough I don't really want to buy extenders because they're very expensive where I live so I will most likely go with the 100-400 mk II.

But as I said my decision is not definite yet.

Thanks you 2 for your help :)

Take care,

Adrian

Boytronic 

Full member
Joined in March 2015
Posts: 78
Posted 11 March 2018 - 21:15 CET

Karol,

nicely copy/paste technical someone's else observation and technical data on both lenses taken from the net to show off, but as a teenager (as you introduce yourself in the profile info) you simply didn't have enough time to experience all what I was explaining no matter how keen you are on spotting or in photography whatsoever.

Being an admin means nothing. Nor above or less among others .

Please allow me to be on this issue more into the matter than you and most of you youngsters (beginners).

I will assure you that you get even better results with 70-200 with ext than 100-400. What you claim is simply not true. I will repeat my self and say that getting 100-400mm L Canon lens is a best buy for spotting for several reasons but the most important is the knowledge and experience. And I am seriously thinking of getting one for myself although I don't need it even if it's more comfortable for reasons mentioned above in my first post. But not better!

You see, I grew up on film (you weren't born then) so within 36 frames there wasn't much space for mistakes. A very expensive hobby back then!

So, saying that you'll get 700-200 for more flexibility means that you are not familiar with the matter of photography.

You can get what ever lens you want but experienced photographer will dominate over you even with worse equipment simply because of the experience and knowledge.

The problem with you youngsters is that you think by watching Youtube tutorials and using your camera for a year or two is enough to "sell brains". It take years and years.

AP (and Lr & Ps) allows a lot of creativity to cover up your lack of knowledge and that's fine but I assure you that knowledge comes first and the right equipment follow.

I always say what's on my mind so no hard feelings! Your observation is subjective, my objective.

Boytronic

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 11 March 2018 - 22:28 CET

Hi Boytronic,

Thank you again for your quite informative reply.

I am not quite sure if this message is entirely towards me but you see, despite my young age I am quite familiar with photography. I didn't buy an L lens for nothing. I also didn't buy myself a Canon 80D for nothing. I still keep my 700D for a secondary cam.

I'm also quite familiar with the limits of my camera (maximum ISO, minimum shutter, etc. for good pictures) so I'm not quite new to this topic.

As I said before my decision is not 100% settled yet. Also said before is that the 2x extender from canon would cost me another 500 swiss francs and I'm not the richest person, hence I'm 16 and not really earning much money so buying the 70-200 + the 2x extender would financially put me in quite a serious situation.

Thanks again for your reply though

Adrian

Boytronic 

Full member
Joined in March 2015
Posts: 78
Posted 11 March 2018 - 22:33 CET

No Adrian, I addressed to Karol as a reply to my post from his point of view..nothing to do with you at all...just go for 100-400mm,you can't miss!

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 11 March 2018 - 22:33 CET

Alright then. Thank you again.

Karol Trojanowski 

News admin
Joined in June 2016
Posts: 63
Posted 11 March 2018 - 22:50 CET

Boytronic I suggest not to judge anyone so quickly. I haven't read any internet opinions in the matter of these two lenses, and I'm not a thief, so I'm not copying anything.

Yes, I'm a teenager, but I've had both 100-400L II and 70-200L II in my hands in last 2 years, and I wrote my own observations.

Of course, 70-200L II is sharper than 100-400L but FIRST GENERATION with push pull system (I also had this lens). But it performs really similar to 100-400L SECOND GENERATION, which I actually have.

Another thing is, that sharpness depend really from the particular copy of the lens. Maybe you've forgotten that?

And the last thing I want to write about, is your arrogance. I respect your life's experience in photography, but I really "love" people who state "I'm older, I'm better". Please, have a bit of self-critisizm, and understand, that someone even much younger, can have a lot of experience.

I'm not writing that to irritate you, because that's not a point. But I'm really disappointed and sad that you don't respect my own observations and experience in photography. Yes, I don't know everything, yes I've made mistakes, but everything I wrote, it was only from my personal experience.

And I'm not writing that as an admin, but as a aviation and photography lover, as we all here.

Ricardo Hebmüller 

Full member
Joined in August 2014
Posts: 82
Posted 13 March 2018 - 01:25 CET

After Boytronic have mastered this subject (and I truly agree with him when he states that a person with a less expensive gear may obtain much better results based on his knowledge and experience - something we see every single day here in this website) I would like to add just one or two points to the discussion.

I have a Canon 100-400mm II lens and I am extremely happy with it, it was a really a great purchase. I used it first with a Canon 70D and later when I ran for a camera upgrade and chose the Canon 7d II (I was targeting the full frame 5d IV, but the plus USD 1.600 price difference made me reconsider...). I do not have the 70-200mm lens.

If I could pinpoint a negative spot it would be the weight (1,600 kg, which I consider quite heavy) so many times I use it with a monopod. This lens also fits well with the Canon 1,4X III extender. There is no chance you regret buying one.

Best regards,

Ricardo.

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 13 March 2018 - 17:43 CET

Hi Ricardo

Thank you for adding this info, allthough the weight doesn't really bother me much. I once had the chance to try out the 100-400 II of my friend and I found it to be not very hard to handhold for a few shots and to keep it around your neck.

But I suppose that's personal preference :)

I really don't want to buy extenders because I mostly spot in ZRH where 400mm are more than enough and 100 on the close end is (in some situations) already too tight. So if I'd buy a 1.4x extender for the 100-400 I wouldn't really get much use of it.

Thanks again for your added commen. Appreciate the help :)

Greetings,

Adrian

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 18 March 2018 - 14:04 CET

Hello again

I have looked at some reviews of the 100-400mm IS mk II and in a few it said that the 100-400 does have a little issue with focus breathing. I'm not sure if that really is a big problem for planespotting because it said that it's a true 400mm at like 60ft + so I thought that it wouldn't be a problem for spotting.

On the other side the 70-200 2.8 mk II doesn't really have that problem.

I still think it won't be a problem for spotting but I just want to make sure if it really isn't.

Thanks and regards,

Adrian

Boytronic 

Full member
Joined in March 2015
Posts: 78
Posted 18 March 2018 - 19:29 CET

Adrian,

Reading a lot of reviews (which are done by pros and bring measured stuff you’ll never need and notice) can cause confusion. If that’s the case that lens wouldn’t be in Canon L series.

It is a perfect glass and buying it means you have the perfect tele lens not only for spotting!

Pros around the world use it and bring perfect shots that you can see everywhere on daily basis.

As I said before, I will get one for myself but I still don’t need it especially when 700-200 with 2x ext brings the same result.

All photos you see here on AP have sharpness added in Lr or Ps so don’t bother yourself with that “focus breathe”. I personally don’t believe there is any. As long as you have steady hand your pics will turn out sharp. The tragedy is to see a lot of pics here on AP taken with top bodies and top lenses with below average quality and yet there are so many fantastic and sharp shots taken with middle class gear. It is all about knowledge but fortunately (or unfortunately) being creative in Lr& Ps can help you make your pics even more attractive as we all do it after all.

6 months ago my 700-200 fell down from the table and I broke my filter ring and all my focus went to hell. I took it to Canon service where they did calibration and now works better than when it was brand new (I bought mine in NY – not Canon USA made but Canon made in Japan!). Sometimes some lenses come with a small factory fault and if you get one you’ll surely be unsatisfied and say it is not a good lens.

My final conclusion; go for it dude, it is a great glass, you can’t miss!

And if you still have doubts you can always take it to Canon service to have focus calibrated again, it costs some bucks but you’ll sleep well.

Boytronic

Adrian Duna 

Member
Joined in March 2017
Posts: 29
Posted 18 March 2018 - 20:13 CET

Thank you very much for this info. I think my decision is now pretty much final for the 100-400.

Maybe I will go to the shop and recalibrate the focusing but i don't know yet.

I think my question is now answered :)

Thanks again,

Adrian

Karol Trojanowski 

News admin
Joined in June 2016
Posts: 63
Posted 18 March 2018 - 23:31 CET

I'm wondering how focus breathing can affect the sharpness of the photo.

Maybe I'm wrong, but focus breathing means that if you take a photo of subject that is quite close to the camera, it will be smaller in the frame especially on higher focal lengths, in comparison with photo taken with lens which doesn't have a focus breathing effect.

So it wouldn't be far from truth to said, that lens that suffers from focus breathing gives you a shorter "real" focal lengths, but only in case of photos with close focus point (below 10 meters, for example). As generally the distance between camera and the plane is much bigger than that, it won't affect your photos Adrian, for sure.

Just no doubt, 100-400L II is a great lens, and if you are able to pay some extra money for it, you won't regret buying it.

Jump to the top

Log in to post in the forum.

Terms and Conditions | About | FAQ | Photo Use | Privacy Policy | Online 927 (33 members)
© 2006-2018 Airplane-Pictures.net | E-mail us: Team@Airplane-Pictures.net
All photos are copyright © to their respective photographers and may not be used without permission.