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Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Canon EF 100-400mm f/4-5.6L IS II Lens Update

Now that Canon has been producing and shipping the EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4x lens (see my review), attention has turned to the replacement of the venerable EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS glass. The current lens has been around since 1998 and showing its age, although it is still a top performer for me and one of my favorite wildlife lenses. Read my earlier post on Canon lens recommendation.

Nikon recently released their 80-400mm VR AF-S lens and now Canon may be ready to response, perhaps with an announcement for the Series II replacement late this year and a shipping date of early 2014. The new lens is expected to be slightly faster (f/4) on the short end and tops out at f/5.6 on the long end. Prototypes have been sighted in Asia on field tests and few specifications have been leaked but the weight and price are expected to higher, perhaps around 3.5 pounds and roughly the same list price as the EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6L IS, at around $2,700.

The Japanese Yen has weakened dramatically in the last few months, a strategy engineered by the new government in Tokyo. Canon has forecasted a decrease in their sales and net profit for the remainder of the fiscal year, even with the more competitive Yen.  Once Canon has finalized their design and manufacturing processes, they should be able to sell off the remaining EF 100-400mm inventory by capitalizing on the 'cheaper' Yen and start releasing the new lens. Keep checking back for more information. I am still on a wildlife photo shoot in Alaska. Visit my website to see the latest photos.

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