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Friday, August 17, 2012

Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS zoom lens

Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS lens test trials in Africa

Now that the London 2012 Olympics is behind us, many sports photographers are going through their photos and chatting about the pre-production gear and equipment they used during the games. One of the most talked about lens is the soon-to-be-released, Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS + 1.4X extender.

I have talked to my friend who was part of the press pool covering the Olympics. Unfortunately, he was not able to borrow a copy of the lens from Canon but he managed to get his hands on one from his fellow photographer during one of the events. His impression is if you are a big enough guy to handhold the Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II right now, you'll have no problem with the EF 200-400mm f/4L IS. The lens is surprisingly agile and simple to use and the instant switch over to the 1.4X extender is a big hit. However, for the average sized guy, a monopod is recommended for a good support if one is going on a half or full day photo shoot. The size and weight should be similar to the new EF 500mm f/4L II lens, perhaps a little bit heavier and I expect the price to be about the same as well, perhaps between $10,000 - $11,000.

Canon is expected to replace a few of their venerable EF white lenses this year now that they have successfully launched and produced in sufficient numbers the Series II, EF 300mm, 400mm, 500mm and 600mm lenses. The EF 100-400mm f/4-5.6L IS II lens is another one of my favorite lenses waiting to be officially released.  There is also a possibility the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L IS will be announced before or after the Photokina Show in Cologne, Germany, later on in September, 2012. This will be an expensive year for me to upgrade my equipment and the EOS-1D X is just the beginning. Take a look at my review of the camera here.

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