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Old October 12th, 2012, 09:53 AM   #16
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Great thank for the quick response.
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Old October 12th, 2012, 03:11 PM   #17
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Someone mentioned poor AF with the Canon 2X. I am afraid I don't own any of the 5D options, but I wonder if the latest 5D3 would be better for AF with a 2X. I am basing this on my 1D bodies (1DsMK3 and 1DMK4) both of which have surprisingly good AF performanace with a Canon 1x and cheap after-market 2X converters mounted together with a 70-200mm f2.8 - and this was looking at the moon, so hardly a bright and contrasty scene.

I beleive the 5D3 has an excellent AF system, so I suspect would be as good as my 1D bodies in this respect.
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Old October 12th, 2012, 03:32 PM   #18
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

I find AF pretty good with the Canon 2X converter. I even use it on the Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 OS (latest image stabiliser version) and it works great for stills (although I use manual most of the time for video).

The Canon 300mm f/2.8 is a superb lens and slightly sharper than the f/4 IS L version, although I do like the lightweight and compactness of the smaller lens, plus close-focus semi- 'macro' of the f/4. The f/4 IS L is a bit slower than the 2.8 L version in auto-focus, and also much slower than the Sigma f/2.8.

I actually much prefer the Nikon Nikkor f/2.8 ED-IFN compared to the Canon 300mm f/2.8 L version, but in reality all provide sharp photos...and video is so much lower resolution than stills, that you would never spot the difference. So it all boils down to handling and light-gathering power.
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Old October 12th, 2012, 05:11 PM   #19
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Yeah, the 5D2 AF is a 2nd class citizen compared to the 1D line and the 5D3. Adding the 2x Extender II slowed things down to a crawl on the 5D2. The Mk III extenders are faster, and the 5D3 is much faster, so even though the extender will still slow things down, the overall speed is likely still very good.

I'd imagine that it depends on what you shoot. If it's smooth and at a distance, no problem. If it's unpredictable and close, every millisecond counts.

But yeah, on the 5D2 with the 2x II, AF became frustratingly slow at times.
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Old October 14th, 2012, 08:02 PM   #20
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

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Originally Posted by Paul Cronin View Post
Daniel appreciate the input.

You say the lens is sharp when shooting video. Do you use it for stills often? Next week I get a chance to use a buddies 300 f/4 so I should answer my own question but always nice to have owners input.
Paul,

Yes I find that the lens is sharp. It is much sharper than the Canon 70-200 2.8 L (version 1) that I also use.

It is also easy to hand hold in low light. Paired with my Canon 5DM3 it makes a great pair when shooting low light event coverage.
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Old October 14th, 2012, 11:30 PM   #21
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

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Jeff,

Thanks you for taking the time to response, that is the first hand input I am after.

My shooting is on the water boat to boat and in the helicopter shooting boats, just like most of my video. And even at times shooting surfing from the shore. A lot of time I can get away with the 70-200 but most of the time I feel the 300 would be perfect when the boats are big or when there is a fleet and you can't get close enough.

Your points about f2.8 vs f4 for me are spot on what I am dealing with on the water. I bet know one would know the difference if I shot with f4 or f2.8 since there is alway light and reflection only adds to the light. Also the 5D MKIII has a great useable ISO range.

Makes sense with the AF not working well with 1.4x. I live by manual focus with my video and have no problem doing that for long stills. Are you using the II or III in the 1.4x extender?

Off to make the donuts for the day. Thanks again Jeff your post has been very helpful.
Paul:

I have a 1.4x EF Extender II. Has anyone seen a significant improvement with the III?
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Old October 15th, 2012, 08:00 AM   #22
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

I had a chance to try the f/4 300 on the MKIII and thought it was great for stills. Did not try it on the C300 since my Movcam rig with rails comes this week.

As many have pointed out the MKIII is a huge step up in that ability to grab the quick focus over the MKII. Thanks Canon this is a huge help with the f/4 300 and I bet with extenders.

As for the extenders I have not had a chance to test any of them. If I was to just buy one it would be the 1.4x III. This is a extra 120mm and if I need longer then that I need longer glass. Also it should work well on the 70-200 which will fill a nice gap between the 200 and the 300. Sounds like I have made my decision.

I appreciate all the great input and advice from all of you. Thanks!
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Old October 15th, 2012, 08:15 AM   #23
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

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Originally Posted by Jeff Wisener View Post
I have a 1.4x EF Extender II. Has anyone seen a significant improvement with the III?
Jeff, I have that exact version as well. By the way, I found the Canon EF 2x II extender way too soft (even for video) as I've mentioned elsewhere on DVinfo.

Here is a very good review that often compares the III and II versions of the Canon EF 1.4x Extenders. It's on a well respected camera site (albeit one primarily aimed at photographers rather than us video folks):

Canon EF 1.4x III Extender Review

Hope this helps.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 08:27 AM   #24
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Thanks Andy that was a good read. I will go for the 1.4xIII.
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Old October 15th, 2012, 11:29 PM   #25
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

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Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
Jeff, I have that exact version as well. By the way, I found the Canon EF 2x II extender way too soft (even for video) as I've mentioned elsewhere on DVinfo.

Here is a very good review that often compares the III and II versions of the Canon EF 1.4x Extenders. It's on a well respected camera site (albeit one primarily aimed at photographers rather than us video folks):

Canon EF 1.4x III Extender Review

Hope this helps.
Thank you for the link. I thought this was interesting "At review time, the price differential between the still-available version II extenders and the version IIIs is rather high. If the prices were equal, there would be no question that the III is the extender version to get. But, saving money is one of the reasons to buy an extender instead of a lens with a longer native focal length. And I'm sure that not everyone can justify the cost difference to go with the 1.4x III over the 1.4x II".
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Old October 16th, 2012, 07:25 AM   #26
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Jeff I think for the $100 difference it is worth every penny.
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Old October 18th, 2012, 02:04 PM   #27
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Just received the EF 70-200 2.8L IS II. Wow, I forgot how nice this lens is to use and fantastic stabilization.

Next week the 300 and 1.4x which should work very well on the 70-200.

Nice to finally have a glass selection to start using the MKIII on some still jobs.
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Old November 19th, 2012, 08:51 AM   #28
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Just an update to this thread for the people who spent the time to help me.

I have purchased the 1.4x III extender and EF 300 mm f/4L. Both will show up in the next two days.

The 5D MKIII has been a fantastic for stills with my current glass: EF 14 f/2.8L, EF 24-105 f/4L IS, EF 70-200 f/2.8L II. Next on the list is the EF 8-15, and 17mm tilt and shift. Sure more will be needed but that will get me through the next few jobs.

Thank you all for the help.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 03:29 PM   #29
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Re: Canon EF 300mm L, f4 & f2,8

Gear arrived today and first test with the EF 300 f/4 IS and Extender 1.4x III on my 5D MKIII shows great promise. The zoom is very fast and the lens seems to be nice and sharp.

I did notice you do not want the lens switch on 1.5M distances with the extender, seems to get confused. With the switch on 2.5 is works great. This makes perfect sense to me. Also extender on the lens prior to lens on the camera is important.

Of course the lens with out the extender works fantastic and you save a stop. Surprised how small this lens is not much bigger then my 70-200 and feels lighter.

I think the MKIII focus is a very big help as we discussed.
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