70-200 F4 with or without IS

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by john_valjean, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. Hello,
    is it worth it to pay the extra $400 to get IS on this lens? it will be mainly used to take pictures of hockey players skating in a hockey ring, thanks ... Most likely I will be using 1/320 or faster shutter.
     
  2. At high shutter speeds, IS isn't as helpful for reducing blur from camera shake, but it can help with composing, since the image will bounce around less in the viewfinder. I have this lens as the non-IS version, and it's quite nice...but I got it because I wanted something lighter to complement my 70-200 f/2.8 IS when I didn't need IS or such a fast lens and didn't want the weight just to have the lens with me. If I'm going to be in a situation where I'll need IS, I'll bring the heavier lens, regardless. So that's a long way of saying go for the IS version. You can turn IS off if you don't need it, but you can't turn it on if you don't have it.
     
  3. You can turn IS off if you don't need it, but you can't turn it on if you don't have it.​
    +1
    Also, the IS version is optically superior to the non-IS.
     
  4. This may be a much more versatile lens than you give it credit. It's great for certain landscapes and as a portrait lens. If you put a 1.4X TC on it, then the IS will be useful, even at SS like 1/500-sec.
     
  5. The IS version is my walk around lens and the IS is invaluable. Worth every extra penny.
     
  6. I used to own both f/4 versions at the same time. In your case, no. You already have the f/2.8 version.
     
  7. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    is it worth it to pay the extra $400 to get IS on this lens?​
    Yes it is worth it.
    IME, there are only two circumstances when it isn’t:
    • when the non IS version has better IQ AND
    • one can say that always the use of the lens will not require IS.
    Your situation fits neither.
    it will be mainly used to take pictures of hockey players skating in a hockey ring,​
    i.e. not “always”.
    pictures of hockey players skating in a hockey ring, . . . most likely I will be using 1/320 or faster shutter.​
    On another matter:
    Assuming you still have the 550D, are you sure that you will have enough light in the Ice Hock Rink to pull shots at (for example): F/4 @ 1/320s @ iso ? ? 3200 ? ?
    And are you sure that 1/320s is a reasonable shutter speed to use as your template?
    I mention these points because based upon the general reference to “Ice Hockey” and my not knowing the exact details of the lighting available and the standard / age of the players - I am not convinced that any F/4 lens will provide all that you might expect, for this shooting scenario.
    ***
    @ Peter J:
    "In your case, no. You already have the f/2.8 version."​
    I don't understand your comment?
    WW
     
  8. The IS is not the most important advantage of the IS version. As Mark said, the IQ of the IS version is much better than it's non IS counterpart. Check out the photozone reviews on both.
     
  9. What Mark and others said. I occasionally used my son's non-IS 70~200/4, and it was a good lens, but I waited for the IS version and had no doubts about that choice.
     
  10. Depends greatly on the age of the players. I shot images of my sons playing from ages 7 through 18. When they were younger, an f4 lens was more than adequate with the slower speed of play. However, as they grew older, stronger and most importantly, faster; an f2.8 lens was invaluable.
    As you are well aware, the lighting in non-pro rinks is dismal at best. As they progress in their skills and the speed of the game increases, you will find that shutter speeds of anything less than 1/400 will not cut it. Therefore IS really doesn't come into play as it will not help freeze the action of the players. 90% of my successful shots were iso 1600, 1/400 at f2.8
    Hope this helps.
     
  11. I would suggest that it is not worth it - not for you and not for this.
    Given that you are a) shooting crop, b) shooting (mainly at higher speeds), and c) shooting in poor -> abyssmal light, a better choice may be a 70-200/2.8 if you can afford the extra scratch.
    First, the 'better IQ' is not something that will affect you much since a) you are shooting on a crop sensor platform and b) you are shooting fast action. There is no way in heck you are going to approach the 'ideal limits' of the lens, and you don't need to worry about the edges of the frame (where the older non-IS is weakest) - in a nutshell, you won't see the differences anyway (just like you'd not likely very often see the difference in acceleration between a Mustang BOSS 302 (444hp) and a plain old GT Premium (420hp)).
    Second, the IS is going to be completely irrelevant for most of your shooting. Yes, it makes the lens vastly more capable for general purpose stuff, but if you use it for that <10% of the time, then the extra scratch spent on it is very much wasted, because then 30% (when IS makes a difference) of that less than 10% of shooting is likely of marginal value at best.
    So IMO, despite the fact that the 70-200/4 IS is a better lens, your money will serve you better in the form of a 70-200/4 non-IS... however, I'd advise considering a 70-200/2.8 non-IS instead. The extra stop is going to make a tangible difference in your capability (especially given the lighting), and would help mediate the lack of IS (on the relatively rare occasion you need it). The additional cost for any 70-200/2.8 would be well worth it, especially given what you are shooting.
     
  12. "The IS is not the most important advantage of the IS version. As Mark said, the IQ of the IS version is much better than it's non IS counterpart. Check out the photozone reviews on both."
    I own both, and they are both excellent performers - each with its individual pluses and minuses. Image quality is not a differentiating factor here. The question simply comes down to the value of IS in your own shooting and, indeed, the only significant difference between the two lenses, aside from price, is the IS feature.
     
  13. I shoot with 70-200L f4 without IS and I see how great IS works in EF 100-400L IS. Photos from 100-400IS are sharper than 70-2004L in the same conditions. Yes, its worth every penny but if You do a lot of photos inside I would think about used lens EF 70-200 f2.8. You can get it in similar price. If you have money don`t hesitate take IS version, if not- take canon 70-200L f4 You`ll be happy too.
     
  14. I agree with Marcus. If you want to pay about half of the IS version then get the non-IS. For moving players the IS gives you nothing. I have the IS version but could easily manage with the non-IS version. Of course it is nice to have the IS, but for what you need and if you want to save then get the non-IS. With the difference you could probably buy a nice s/h 200mm f2.8 which you might find useful.
     
  15. You know I would put up a picture I took with a 70-200 2.8L lens that is over twelve years old. However, I would have to downsize the picture in PS and then lose resolution and then post it on this forum. It's a pain when I can come right out of my on site files in DP with any size pictures that I have posted in my DP file and post them immediately at sharp resolution. I can post much faster on FB than I can here. I will say I have shot several thousand swim meet pictures with this lens. I shot a meet at Phillips-Exeter Academy last weekend and the best I could do without High Speed Sync flash was 1/500 at 2.8 at ISO 1600 and 3200 in the best light. 1/250th is ok if you want arm blur to demonstate motion and speed but keepers aren't that great. I have done a good bit of high school hockey and I found lighting in a lot of places to be at about the above intensity or worse. 2.8 is not great for sports because focus DOF is so damn critical that anyone not directly in focus is out of focus. I much prefer sunlight but PE was indoors and dark as was BU recently. I got usable pictures and posted them where they were supposed to go but its a compromise. At PE I wound up using High Speed Sync flash at 1/800 to stop motion and get a little DOF and to fill-in swimming faces against strong backlight. I am really much happier with higher shutter speeds. I don't use IS for sports. I have it on my 100-400 but that lens is for good light. I have a NEX 5N with IS to shoot heads at meets. It works very well and it ain't so damn heavy. I don't think f4 is enough for some sports.
     
  16. I use many old lenses without any such thing as IS, VR, etc.
    But I'd never buy a new telephoto without the feature.
    IS helps for shorter lenses too, of course, but for longer lenses it's worth every extra penny.
     
  17. I don't understand your comment? [William W]​
    Please ignore that last sentence in my comment. I thought the OP had the f/2.8 IS version.
     
  18. Thank you all for the valuable feedback you have provided. I am using a 60D crop sensor camera. Currently I am using my 70-300mm IS lens and I have been lucky with enough light in the arena where my kids play. They are Mites so they are not super fast on the ice yet. I still have to do some post processing on the ones I keep and print.

    I will have to think about it more since there is some serious cash involved in this, F4 vs F2.8 vs F4 IS. Thank you again since now I have the technical feedback to make my decision.
     
  19. I had the f4 IS and sold it when I bought the 2.8IS, I regret it, it is a great lens and the IS was phenomenal, I would definitely get the IS. That said, if you are only going to use the lens for sports it is probably not worth the extra $400. I hear the IS has better IQ but I doubt you would notice it on action photos.
     
  20. Another note, yes the 2.8 non IS would be even better for indoor sports, the thing is a brick (probably weighs more than the f4 and 60D combined) but handles well on a 60D, IMO the Rebel's are a bit light for the 2.8.
     
  21. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    @ Peter J - thanks.
    @ John Valjean - good luck with the choice.
    WW
     
  22. You could keep the zoom you have and add the relatively small and affordable EF 200/2.8L.
     
  23. I have the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and the 70-200 F4 IS. I shoot quite a bit of hockey and use the non IS F2.8 lens.. It is
    possible to shoot with the F4 lens but the F2.8 helps a lot as most arenas are quite dark. In my opinion you do not need
    IS for hockey. I bought the F4 IS lens later and it is a great lens. My primary reason for buying it was the fact is was half
    the weight and quite a bit smaller than the F2.8 lens. For general use the IS is useful and I believe that the IQ of the F4
    IS lens is better than that of the F4 non IS lens although I have never shot the latter lens. For sports use I would suggest
    the F2.8 lens - without IS it is a similar price to the F4 IS. For general use the F4 IS is perhaps more versatile. In terms
    of IQ the f2.8 non IS is better than the MK I F2.8 IS but not as good as the current MkII lens. The F2.8 and F4 IS have
    very similar image quality although the F2.8 lens can produce better Bokah
     
  24. I have the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and the 70-200 F4 IS. I shoot quite a bit of hockey and use the non IS F2.8 lens.. It is
    possible to shoot with the F4 lens but the F2.8 helps a lot as most arenas are quite dark. In my opinion you do not need
    IS for hockey. I bought the F4 IS lens later and it is a great lens. My primary reason for buying it was the fact is was half
    the weight and quite a bit smaller than the F2.8 lens. For general use the IS is useful and I believe that the IQ of the F4
    IS lens is better than that of the F4 non IS lens although I have never shot the latter lens. For sports use I would suggest
    the F2.8 lens - without IS it is a similar price to the F4 IS. For general use the F4 IS is perhaps more versatile. In terms
    of IQ the f2.8 non IS is better than the MK I F2.8 IS but not as good as the current MkII lens. The F2.8 and F4 IS have
    very similar image quality although the F2.8 lens can produce better Bokah
     
  25. I have the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and the 70-200 F4 IS. I shoot quite a bit of hockey and use the non IS F2.8 lens.. It is
    possible to shoot with the F4 lens but the F2.8 helps a lot as most arenas are quite dark. In my opinion you do not need
    IS for hockey. I bought the F4 IS lens later and it is a great lens. My primary reason for buying it was the fact is was half
    the weight and quite a bit smaller than the F2.8 lens. For general use the IS is useful and I believe that the IQ of the F4
    IS lens is better than that of the F4 non IS lens although I have never shot the latter lens. For sports use I would suggest
    the F2.8 lens - without IS it is a similar price to the F4 IS. For general use the F4 IS is perhaps more versatile. In terms
    of IQ the f2.8 non IS is better than the MK I F2.8 IS but not as good as the current MkII lens. The F2.8 and F4 IS have
    very similar image quality although the F2.8 lens can produce better Bokah
     
  26. I have the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and the 70-200 F4 IS. I shoot quite a bit of hockey and use the non IS F2.8 lens.. It is
    possible to shoot with the F4 lens but the F2.8 helps a lot as most arenas are quite dark. In my opinion you do not need
    IS for hockey. I bought the F4 IS lens later and it is a great lens. My primary reason for buying it was the fact is was half
    the weight and quite a bit smaller than the F2.8 lens. For general use the IS is useful and I believe that the IQ of the F4
    IS lens is better than that of the F4 non IS lens although I have never shot the latter lens. For sports use I would suggest
    the F2.8 lens - without IS it is a similar price to the F4 IS. For general use the F4 IS is perhaps more versatile. In terms
    of IQ the f2.8 non IS is better than the MK I F2.8 IS but not as good as the current MkII lens. The F2.8 and F4 IS have
    very similar image quality although the F2.8 lens can produce better Bokah
     
  27. I have the 70-200 f2.8 non IS and the 70-200 F4 IS. I shoot quite a bit of hockey and use the non IS F2.8 lens.. It is
    possible to shoot with the F4 lens but the F2.8 helps a lot as most arenas are quite dark. In my opinion you do not need
    IS for hockey. I bought the F4 IS lens later and it is a great lens. My primary reason for buying it was the fact is was half
    the weight and quite a bit smaller than the F2.8 lens. For general use the IS is useful and I believe that the IQ of the F4
    IS lens is better than that of the F4 non IS lens although I have never shot the latter lens. For sports use I would suggest
    the F2.8 lens - without IS it is a similar price to the F4 IS. For general use the F4 IS is perhaps more versatile. In terms
    of IQ the f2.8 non IS is better than the MK I F2.8 IS but not as good as the current MkII lens. The F2.8 and F4 IS have
    very similar image quality although the F2.8 lens can produce better Bokah
     
  28. If you need zoom for the task then there's no arguing, but consider that the EF 135mm F/2 L will give you 4x shorter exposures or a two stops cleaner ISO setting.
     
  29. Hello all,
    just for the sake of closing the topic and helping someone else with the same question. I ended up buying the 70-200 F4L IS. I know it is more money but long term it is a better buy at least for me. Again, thanks for all your responses and help.
     
  30. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Hello John . . . it is not often we get to know the outcome and your reply is most welcome by all, I am sure.
    Enjoy your new lens.
    WW
     

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