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Help needed for a better zoom lens (2 Viewers)

Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Hello,
I am in need of your help, at the end of this month, I am getting a better zoom lens, my camera is the Canon80D the zoom lens I have now is the Canon 70-300mm I am unsure of my price range as of yet, but I guessing 700-800.00 can you tell me the lens you use for backyard photography and birds in flight, I appreciate all of your help...
 

marcsantacurz

Well-known member
Do you mind buying used? If so, that's the best route for a budget price range. Here's the list in my order of preference, but the top few you might only get used in that price range.

1) Tamron 150-600 G2 (not the original non-G2), about $1200 new
2) Sigma 150-600 Contemporary (or just "C"), about $900 new
3) Sigma or Tamron 100-400 ($600, $700 respectively)
4) Canon 400mm f/5.6 ($1200 new) -- this is a non-IS lens, but if you keep the shutter speed around 1/800 or higher, you should be fine hand held. I think you can get quite the deal on this used and its very light for a long lens.

The 400mm f/5.6 is around $700-$800 used on ebay. It might be the best price to image quality deal. But it is not a zoom.

In the 100-400 range, I'm not sure if the Sigma or Tammy is better. I have not used either of them.

I personally use the Tammy 150-600 G2 on Nikon and really like it, though nowadays I'm mostly shooting the 500mm f/5.6, which is both out of the price range and Nikon only.

400mm is not going to be a big step up from 300mm, in terms of field of view. But I think both those modern 100-400 might be better IQ than the lower-end 70-300 (non-IS). On your crop sensor the 300mm is 480mm and the 400 is 640mm. But a 600mm is 960mm -- that's a good birding field of view.

These lenses might be 1.5x - 2x as heavy as your lens, maybe more. You will want a good shoulder sling strap. I highly recommend the Black Rapids Sports sling strap. It is also important to attach the strap to the lens, not the camera body to avoid damaging the lens mount.

There are some older model Sigma 100-500 (or 150-500? I don't remember) that are a fair bit less expensive and pretty good IQ, but they will be much heavier than the 150-600s.

Marc
 

Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Hello Marc,
Thanks so much for replying to me, as you know my lens is the Canon 70-300mm it has IS which for a new lens I would like it to have IS, Because I am used to having it, which lens would you recommend that has IS?
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Hello Marc,
Thanks so much for replying to me, as you know my lens is the Canon 70-300mm it has IS which for a new lens I would like it to have IS, Because I am used to having it, which lens would you recommend that has IS?
Bonnie, There is 'IS' on all the lenses Marc mentioned (they just go by other names such as VC, OS, etc) , except perhaps surprisingly the Canon 400 f5.6L. The Canon lens is light enough, and the quickest of the bunch (just - by 1/2 a stop) that you will mostly get away without it - as Marc said, above 1/800th sec (mostly I think you will be 1/1200th sec or more to isolate subject movements - wingtip, rapidly turning heads etc).

Out of the Siggy and Tammy 100-400's, I have read that the Siggy holds a slight sharpness edge at 400mm, whilst the Tammy holds a slight sharpness edge at all other shorter focal lengths.

There was a Tammy G2 150-600 for sale here on BF for about ~$650 odd IIRC .....
https://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=381885





Chosun :gh:
 
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Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Bonnie, it depends ! :cat:

I have the Nikon D7200 and Tamron G2 150-600 f5-f6.3 which I just about always shoot hand held and carry around on a sling (it really helps). It's about as much weight as I want to carry, and there are the odd occasions where I'm looking for even more reach.

I think it's very much going to come down to personal preference. ie. How much weight and size do you want to handle is probably the most important factor, and what sort of shooting do you want to do and at what distances on what subjects? What sort of light will that be in? Bright only? Or all sorts of light including lower light where a stabilization system will help? Sometimes what sort of a deal you can find also comes into it.

Broadly, I think it comes down to more reach more size vs less reach less size. The extra mm have their unavoidable cost. Either way you would probably want to put the rig on a Black Rapid Sports sling or similar for maximum enjoyment walking around. Then of course you have to weigh up (literally) how much time you will spend shooting on a tripod or other fixed rest.

I think you choose your preferred compromise and either go 600mm or 400mm. Budget is either going to be there or there abouts. Beyond your budget, the Canon 100-400L IS II (the MKII version) is well worth considering stretching to. It's hard to go past the L glass for quality. Additionally, because this is a high quality L lens, it also takes the 1.4xTC reasonably well which would give you a 140-560mm f6.3 - f8 and a weight for the lens and TC combined of ~1.8kg (~4lb) , so that's something to consider as well.

The Tamron G2 150-600 is great fun. Make sure it's the G2 version. If you think it's heavy, then pick up the ~2 lb heavier Sigma 150-600 Sports (6&1/2lbs!) for comparison and then come back to the Tammy ...... it will seem light in comparison ! :cat:

Of the 400's, the Sigma 100-400 f5-f6.3 OS is a good versatile lens that is right within your budget. The Canon 400 f5.6L might also be an option. Both of these are around ~2 lbs lighter than the Tammy, though less reach.

Only a lb lighter than the Tammy 600, but near twice the cost, the Canon 100-400L IS II is going to offer the best quality of the lot. It's an investment piece, and only you can decide if the small improvement in image is worth twice the expense. If you ever upgrade bodies to the 90D, mythical and long awaited 7D III, or some future Canon body, at least you will have the comfort of full compatibility.

I think the best way to try and sort all of this out is to try and get the rig in the hand and see how you like the feel of it. One of them will speak to you. The 600's could take a few weeks to feel entirely comfortable handling and pointing them, but I'm happy with mine for BIF even. Shooting a 600 is pretty groovy :hippy:

Good luck ! :)




Chosun :gh:
 
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Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Hello Chosun
I am not getting a different camera body, sticking with the canon 80d so now need to decide on lens to get, I do want a better lens for birds in flight, so you think I should get a 600mm? which one is best for my canon80d?
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Hello Chosun
I am not getting a different camera body, sticking with the canon 80d so now need to decide on lens to get, I do want a better lens for birds in flight, so you think I should get a 600mm? which one is best for my canon80d?
Bonnie,

They all perform similarly - the question is how much lens do you want to handle. Reach is reach, but weight is weight too. It's no good having 600mm reach if you are having absolutely no fun using it. Conversely it is no fun being able to carry something light but rueing that it is too short a focal length every time you go to use it. Only you will be able to decide. Really best to try them, swing them around and see how you like it.

600mm I like the Tamron G2 150-600 f5-f6.3. Make sure it's the newer G2 version.

400mm the Sigma 100-400 f5-f6.3 is well within your budget.

Unless you really love the weight of the 600mm Tammy G2, I would try and go for the Canon 100-400 f4.5-f5.6L IS II. You could also look at getting the matching 1.4xTC III as well. [The other benefit of this lens is that it has the shortest close focus distance too so you'll be able to get ~ .3 something to about 0.5 macro]. Perhaps you could help fund these by selling your 70-300 ?

Ultimately it's going to be up to you which one you like best. :cat:





Chosun :gh:
 
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Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Hello, I do not think anyone would buy my 70-300 would they? and looks like the canon 100-400 and the extender is way way way out of my price range, so think it will be the tamron 150-600, where online would you suggest is best place to buy the tamron 150-600?
 

marcsantacurz

Well-known member
Hello, I do not think anyone would buy my 70-300 would they? and looks like the canon 100-400 and the extender is way way way out of my price range, so think it will be the tamron 150-600, where online would you suggest is best place to buy the tamron 150-600?

You can always list the lens here on BirdForum in the sales forum or ebay or craigslist. I usually try craigslist first as it is cash and avoids all sales fees. people will buy it, but you need to price it right.

I didn't mention the Canon 100-400 II. That is a fantastic lens, but not in your budget.

The Tammy 150-600 G2 is 4.4 lb. The Sigma 100-400 is 2.6 lb. Add in your camera weight 1.6 lb, so 6lb vs 4.2 lb. Try getting some soup cans or something and stack up that weight and carry it around. that will give you an estimate of what you would be carrying. A good sling strap is needed for the 6lb, and I'd personally use it for the 4.2lb too.

As Chosun said, it's reach versus weight versus budget. You can't have all three to your benefit.

If you want low weight and a good dedicated birding lens, I think the Canon 400/5.6 is the way to go. You usually are not shooting at low enough shutter speeds that IS makes any difference (it usually does not work above 1/1000th or so, give or take depending on camera, lens, etc.).

For a general walk-around lens, the 100-400 is more practical.

For a more functional dedicated birding lens, the 150-600 (Tammy G2 or Sigma C) is the best in your price range. They have IS, so you could shoot at lower shutter speed for perched birds hand held. and the zoom range is pretty practical for a long lens. The image quality, especially for a crop camera that only uses the center of the lens, will be very good.

Marc
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Hello, I do not think anyone would buy my 70-300 would they? and looks like the canon 100-400 and the extender is way way way out of my price range, so think it will be the tamron 150-600, where online would you suggest is best place to buy the tamron 150-600?
They would if it was the L version, otherwise probably not worth selling it. For the Tamron G2 150-600 Canon fit:
I've always had good dealings with Adorama https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&...FjABegQIAhAB&usg=AOvVaw0z1CfX2Ka1_izgk9GsB-7m
Or BHPhoto https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bh...-5-6-3-di-vc-usd-g2/ci/32390/N/3624916181/amp

Make sure the tap-in console comes with the lens, or you get it. I would also get one of the good Black Rapid slings too. :t:





Chosun :gh:
 

Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Marc, you say the tamron weighs more then the sigma
Choson, you say the sigma weighs more then the tamron
you both say I should get the 100-400 its way out of my price range, and looking at price of tamron lens 1,299.00 ouch, now I do not know what to do..which lens to get
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Marc, you say the tamron weighs more then the sigma
Choson, you say the sigma weighs more then the tamron
you both say I should get the 100-400 its way out of my price range, and looking at price of tamron lens 1,299.00 ouch, now I do not know what to do..which lens to get
Bonnie, there's several models of Sigma 600 zooms (3 now) which is what I was talking about. There's:
Sigma 150-600 C 1.93kg
Sigma 150-600 S 2.86kg
Sigma 60-600 S 2.7kg.
Compare those to the Tamron G2 150-600 2kg

The Sigma 100-400 is 1.16kg

If the Canon 100-400 II is way out of the price range then so be it.

You are left with a chalk and cheese choice of 600mm vs 400mm. One is nearly twice the weight of the other. It's going to be entirely up to you to work out how much you want to cart around and handle.

The 600mm doubles your current 300mm focal length. The 400mm offers only a 33% bigger image than your current - imagine that - it's not much.

If $1299 of the Tammy G2 is an ouch, then you could get the Sigma 150-600 C for $899 currently. A little bit behind the Tammy, but jump on it ! https://www.adorama.com/sg150600ccaa.html






Chosun :gh:
 

Chosun Juan

Given to Fly
Australia - Aboriginal
Chosun
can you post a link for the 100-400 without the converter? just want to see exactly how much it costs
The Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM ...... ?

$2049 ? https://www.google.com.au/amp/s/www..._9524b002_ef_100_400mm_f_4_5_5_6l_is.html/amp

Maybe someone in the US can post a better deal from a reputable source that they trust. I gotta go for the arvo .....

$1839? Is this New USA Warranted product? Everything included? Anyone know these guys? Are they legit? https://www.walmart.com/ip/Canon-EF...9071712&wl6=75440118036&wl7=2840&wl8=&veh=sem

$1596? Is this New USA Warranted product? Everything included? Anyone know these guys? Are they legit?
https://www.abesofmaine.com/Canon_E...MIpJWx5LGs5QIVyBaPCh0YJQO_EAAYASAAEgKfb_D_BwE

Over to the locals :)




Chosun :gh:
 
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marcsantacurz

Well-known member
For the Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM:

$2049 new from B&H
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1092632-REG/canon_9524b002_ef_100_400mm_f_4_5_5_6l_is.html

$1680 used from B&H
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/used/1092632/canon_9524b002_ef_100_400mm_f_4_5_5_6l_is.html

Looks like $1200 - $1400 buy now on ebay. Auction might go for $1100?

Ken Rockwell has a review here: https://kenrockwell.com/canon/lenses/100-400mm-ii.htm. He calls this lens "the world's best telephoto zoom" (at least back in 2014 when he ranked it). He finds it very sharp and a great lens. He even used it with a 1.4x TC and says it is still very sharp, but at f/8 only the center focus points work on the 5diii and 7dii. I'm not sure how the 80d would autofocus at f/8.

Chosun listed all the weights. The confusion is there are two Sigma 150-600. The Contemporary ("C") does not have all the weather sealings and supposedly has a less powerful AF motor. The Sport ("S") is much heavier, is fully weather sealed and has a beefier motor and a larger objective lens (though same max aperture). I have not used either, but from reviews people do not think the S is any sharper than the C.

The question becomes, if you need 900mm or more focal length for birds, which of these are better:
- 100-400 + 1.4x TC and no crop at f/8 (896mm equivalent field of view)
- 100-400 and 1.4x linear crop at f/5.6
- 400mm f/5.6 same numbers as 100-400
- 150-600 at 600mm f/6.3 and no crop (960mm equivalent field of view)

Without having used those lenses for a real comparison, I think trying to use a (100-)400mm f/5.6 with a 1.4xTC at f/8 would not be good for BIF and only good for static shots in very good lighting. So I think that is out.

The Tamron + Sigma 100-400 f/6.3 would definitely be out with a TC. You're at f/9.

Between the Tamon or Sigma 100-400 f/6.3 plus crop vs a 150-600 f/6.3, I think the 150-600 will be better.

Between the older 400mm f/5.6 w/ 1.4x crop and the 150-600 f/6.3 at native 600, I'd assume the 150-600 would have an edge, but I have not done that comparison. They might be very close. I'm sure someone on the Internet has done that comparison. Try this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FDtvBDXaEnk. She reports a low focus hit rate with the Tammy G2, which is not my experience on Nikon d500 or d850. She preferred the 400mm f/5.6.

Between the newer 100-400 f/5.6L IS II w/ 1.4x crop and the 150-600 f/6.3 at native 600, I don't know which would look better. The Canon L glass is likely better even with cropping and it has a 1/3 stop ISO advantage so that is cleaner images to start with. But it is expensive.

Marc
 

Bonnie Miller

Bonnie Loves Nature
Thanks, I think I will get the sigma 150-600 C, if I was to get the tamron, I will have to wait 1-2 more months to save more money, I honestly do no want to wait
 

coopershawk

Well-known member
That looks like a good price but I would be extremely skeptical purchasing from that site. It does not look like a legitimate store. Most of the pages don't direct to anywhere except the home page, and the contact address is just a random house in California (use google street view to see). They are also not listed in Sigma's authorized dealer page, so even if it isn't a scam, it would be a grey market lens, meaning that Sigma would likely not service it if it were to malfunction.
 

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