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1.4 canon converter and 70-200 2.8 IS lens combo

Jeff Bingham , Sep 16, 2007; 12:11 p.m.

Hi All, I haven't seen this posted, has anyone used the combo of the Canon 1.4 converter and Canon 70-200 2.8 IS? I'm shooting with a Canon 30D and will be getting a 5D shortly. I'm interested in IQ, have you seen much loss in IQ quality? I normally shoot in raw and convert post process. Thank you in advance for your imput.

Jeff Bingham

Responses


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Mendel Leisk , Sep 16, 2007; 12:46 p.m.

I appreciate you want first-hand opinion, but anyway, if you haven't found this already, here a comparison test:

(link)

Mark Nagel , Sep 16, 2007; 12:52 p.m.

This has been posted many many times, and the consensus is OK IQ. I have this combo and never use it because the loss of quality. The 100-400mm is sharper than the 70-200+1.4x, and all primes (300 and 400) are sharper with the 1.4x on them. The teleconverters just aren't that great on the zooms. I hate to say it, but a Tamron 28-300 was sharper at 300mm than the 70-200is+1.4x, not by much, but thats just to say the quality loss.

m

Mark Nagel , Sep 16, 2007; 12:54 p.m.

Forgot to add, if you don't have a 1.4X, put the money towards a 300 f/4 or 400 f/5.6. You'll be happier.

m

Steve Dunn , Sep 16, 2007; 12:59 p.m.

I use that lens with Canon's 1.4x II (in case you're considering buying a used mark I, the glass is identical between them; the only differences are weather sealing and improved anti-glare measures). I haven't done formal testing with it so I can't totally answer your question. But I did some testing with that TC and another lens I used to own (the 300/4L IS USM) and discovered that pictures looked much better if I stopped down a stop. Comparing the lens wide open with and without the TC, the TC photos had quite a bit less snap; stopping down one stop fixed that.

Based on that, I never shoot wide open with the 70-200+1.4x; if the prime lens needed to be stopped down with the TC, I'm sure the zoom will, too.

On the 300, the TC noticeably increased chromatic aberration, too. The lens on its own had relatively little CA; it was visible at 100% or more magnification but not obtrusive. With the TC, CA increased enough that I felt it needed to be fixed on each picture (which is easy enough to do in software; it's just an extra step). Again, I haven't really tested this with the 70-200+TC but anecdotally I do notice more CA when using the TC.

Having said that, I'm happy with this combination, shooting RAW on my 20D. I have no doubt that IQ is lower with the TC; it's impossible for a TC not to cost you at least a little IQ. But IQ is good enough for me, and while I don't shoot professionally, I'm sure the IQ is good enough for professional use.

Jon Austin , Sep 16, 2007; 01:27 p.m.

My experience and opinion largely mirror Steve Dunn's.

While adding a TC (more glass) by definition has to degrade IQ to some measurable degree, I've used my 1.4x TC II with both 70-200/4 (non-IS) and 70-200/2.8 IS, and for the most part, I can't tell which images were taken with / without the TC.

There are so many other variables that impact IQ, I think you'd have to do a direct A/B comparison (i.e., taking sequential shots of same subject with same exposure settings, with TC on and off).

Alan Myers , Sep 16, 2007; 02:45 p.m.

Hi,

Like most of the other responders, I use 1.4X II with 70-200/2.8 I.S. without major problems.

The combo gives pretty good image quality. Not perfect, but decent. And yes, closed down a stop or two is better than wide open. I carry the set a lot, when I simply don't want to or can't carry around larger lenses for various reasons.

My 300/2.8 I.S. blows the zoom/TC combo away, in terms of IQ (it had better!). But, it's not always a practical lens to carry around and use.

I avoid using the 2X II and 70-200 together. I'm not satidfied with the IQ of this particular combo. (However, please note: IMHO, the 2X works very well with 300 and 500mm primes.)

Jeff Bingham , Sep 16, 2007; 05:06 p.m.

Hi, Thanks for all you answers and options. I wasn't sure since recently switching to EF autofocus lens. My main concern is extra weight hiking through the badlands,but likely will pickup the converter for those rare situations that present themselves. Mark, things change, so answers that were valid a year ago may not apply now with rapid technology and design changes. Thanks all, and happy shooting! Jeff

Mark Nagel , Sep 16, 2007; 09:11 p.m.

Brian, my point wasn't to search, although doesn't hurt, it was that it has been posted and replied to so many times and the hundreds of responses seem to say good with primes, OK with zooms. The lens and Tc haven't changed over the past year or two so the results should be the same.

I personally don't like the combo, unless stopped down to f/8-f/11. I find it very soft. On my 300/2.8is either the 1.4 or 2.o are sharp wide open. I had my 1.4x for a couple years and didn't use it until I got my 300mm. Too disappointed with it on my 70-200/2.8is and /or 100-400is so it sat at home.

m

Mark Nagel , Sep 16, 2007; 09:12 p.m.

Sorry meant Jeff above

m


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