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Another Canon What Gear Question

russellsnr Avatar
russellsnr 18 263 England
10 May 2020 1:25PM
Hi, OK the question is this!!
I have the Canon 100-400mm MK l version (pump out pump in) and the Canon 400mm, great lens to walk around with; I intend to purchase another lens to replace this one and the 100-400mm to use on either my 7D MK ll or again trade up to a 5D MK IV. My lens options are (1) a new 100-400mm MK ll and use my 1.4 MK ll Extender to give me 580mm approx at F8 or (2) a used 500mm or 600mm F4 IS.
Looking at reviews and user experiences with the Canon 5D MK lV the noise capabilities of this camera would allow a much higher ISO option to compensate for the lack of light at F8 with an extender on the 100-400mm MK ll.
The cost? A used 500mm or 600mm would be around the £2500 to £3500 and a new 5D MK lV along with a 100-400mm MK ll can be had for around £3500.
If I was to go for a 500mm or 600mm I would also have to go down the 5D MK lV route.
This is what is going round in my head so throw it out there for advice.
Many Thanks, Russ.
Dave_Canon Avatar
Dave_Canon 17 2.2k United Kingdom
10 May 2020 3:01PM
I can certainly confirm that the 5D4 is low noise but I do not have a lens longer than 200mm myself but do have a 1.4X Extender. I do not walk around with my 70-200mm normally and only use it where essential as it is so heavy (e.g. motor sports, Nature).

justin c Avatar
justin c 19 5.2k 36 England
10 May 2020 3:29PM
I think a lot depends on what you're most likely to be photographing.
For general wildlife, i.e. mammals, birds etc then the Canon 500mm f4 is hard to beat with a 1.4X extender.
If you wished to just specialize in birds I would go for the Canon 600mm f4 with a 1.4X extender.

Yes, the lenses are big and quite heavy, but if you're reasonably fit and strong then carrying them, even over quite long distances, needn't be an issue. Heavy compared to a 100-400mm but you soon get used to it and the more you carry it the easier it becomes.

I used (and still own) the Canon 100-400mm for many, many years as my longest focal length for wildlife photography before eventually buying a 500mm f4. I certainly wouldn't ever want to be without the 500mm and combined with an extender, it opens up many more possibilities than with the limited reach of a 400mm.
If you intend to do a lot of wildlife photography then go for as much focal length as possible.

Having both a 1.6 crop factor and a full frame camera is ideal if you can swing the budget.
I still use a 5D II and the original 7D and wouldn't be without either. I probably use them both equally, but definately appreciate the low light capabilities of the 5DII as I tend to shoot a lot at dawn and dusk.

I've no experience with the upgraded camera bodies and to be honest the ones I have do everything I need. As long as I can print up to A2 then I'm happy. Not saying that I wouldn't want the latest, greatest camera. But it would certainly be a case of want, rather than need.

Good luck with your decision.
pink Avatar
pink Plus
20 7.4k 11 England
11 May 2020 10:12AM
I have the 5D4 and the 7D2, I use the 7D mainly for motorsports.
I also have the new 100-400 and for a general walkabout lens it is superb, you will be blown away by the quality over the old model (which I sold) the close focus distance is amazing and I seldom use my 70-200 as a result.
I also have an old 500mm f4 which is also an amazing lens considering its age, I use it on both bodies but mainly the 5D4, for me its a considered decision before going out as I cannot manage to carry all options, the 500mm does not get used a lot but I would not be without it, I also use an old 1.4x convertor and I'm hard pushed to notice any quality drop off.
The only downside of the 100-400 is the f5.6 aperture at 400mm, add a convertor and its f8 which is getting a bit slow, yes you can push the ISO but quality will suffer above 1600/3200.
Good luck with what you decide upon.
russellsnr Avatar
russellsnr 18 263 England
11 May 2020 10:44AM
Hi, Many thanks for the replies. Ian, must admit I am very disappointed with the ISO on the 7D MK ll seems to start to suffer over ISO 800 and above 1600 really not good. With the 5D MK IV from what I have read that at 3200 it still plays well so I suppose in part what you loose on the swings you gain on the roundabout with ISO. Really getting drawn toward 5D MK Iv and the 100-400mm MK II, that lens seems to be light weight and with IS so again the IS would give you maybe 1 to 1 1/2 stop latitude at the slower shutter speeds?
Thanks again, Russ.


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