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Sold my 70-300, help me chose a replacement!

pdk42

Moderator
Well, I've decided to off-load my 70-300. After lots of analysis I'm concluded that actually it a very good performer optically but that it's not really the sort of lens I need for landscape work. The fact that it's hardly been used in a year of ownership speaks volumes.

So, I need to decide what to replace it with (if anything). Options seem to be (in increasing order of size and cost!):

- 28-200
- Sigma 100-400 DG DN
- Lumix 70-200 f4
- Sigma 70-200 f2.8 DG DN

An odd mix I know. But here's my thinking:

28-200I don't need a wide aperture and I value compactness. This would work very well for me if the IQ is up to it. But I'm not convinced by the shots I've seen. I need to test it myself.
Sigma 100-400 DG DNI've ordered a used one of these from SRS since they offer a 30-day no-quibble return policy. It may be too big with more reach than I need - but I'm curious! It's an opportunity to try it for the downside of paying the return postage if I don't like it. I suspect I won't like it.
Lumix 70-200 f4Probably the most likely option. MPB have several "like new" for around £1000.
Sigma 70-200 f2.8 DG DNI really don't need f2.8, but from all I've read, and a brief play with one at the Photography Show here in the UK yesterday, it looks like quite the lens!

Anyone got any experiences/views/recommendations/advice?

Doing nothing is of course an option, which may well be what I do given how little use the 70-300 has had.
 
The longer you wait, the more alternatives will be available.

I have no clou what the next unknown lenses for L-Mount will be, but history has shown that they are eager to launch each year x amount of new lenses.

If you did not use that longer FL in the past, there is no pressure to decide now.

What is the size and weight difference between the Lumix F4 and Sigma F2.8?
 
If I were you, I would wait. But this can take worst case still 2-3 years.
 
Are you aware of this? https://www.lumixloan.com You could try the Lumix 70-200 f4 for 48 hours for free. It'd be worth keeping an eye on the site to see if the 28-200 becomes available: they've got the 100 f2.8 macro.

Sigma used to have an equivalent Sigma Select scheme, but it seems they've recently terminated it.
 
...
- 28-200
- Sigma 100-400 DG DN
- Lumix 70-200 f4
- Sigma 70-200 f2.8 DG DN
I honestly don't understand what you hope to get wit the 100-400 or the two 70-200, what you're 70-300 doesn't already offer. All three are chunkier than the 70-300.

The focusing issues, that you've described doesn't seem like a lens issue. More like an algorithm issue or setting issue with the focusing of the camera on long distance subjects. Those probably appear also on the other lenses on similar situations.

As you have mentioned, you don't need the fast aperture of the 70-200 lenses. And do you think you will make a lot of use of the longer focal length of the 100-400, if you consider you probably will have similar focusing issues?

If I understood your issue with the 70-300 right, than I think the only lens on the list, that would get more used as the 70-300 by you, would be the 28-200.
 
Are you aware of this? https://www.lumixloan.com You could try the Lumix 70-200 f4 for 48 hours for free. It'd be worth keeping an eye on the site to see if the 28-200 becomes available: they've got the 100 f2.8 macro.

Sigma used to have an equivalent Sigma Select scheme, but it seems they've recently terminated it.
Thanks Alan. A 70-200 f4 will be with me for easter weekend!
 
I honestly don't understand what you hope to get wit the 100-400 or the two 70-200, what you're 70-300 doesn't already offer. All three are chunkier than the 70-300.

The focusing issues, that you've described doesn't seem like a lens issue. More like an algorithm issue or setting issue with the focusing of the camera on long distance subjects. Those probably appear also on the other lenses on similar situations.

As you have mentioned, you don't need the fast aperture of the 70-200 lenses. And do you think you will make a lot of use of the longer focal length of the 100-400, if you consider you probably will have similar focusing issues?

If I understood your issue with the 70-300 right, than I think the only lens on the list, that would get more used as the 70-300 by you, would be the 28-200.
I think I agree actually. I've been looking at 28-200 images this evening. The sample shots I've found on the DPReview site are very unsatisfactory in that very few represent landscape scenarios at 100mm +. I guess I'll just have to buy one and be prepared to return it if it doesn't work out.
 
So, I need to decide what to replace it with (if anything). Options seem to be (in increasing order of size and cost!):

- 28-200
- Sigma 100-400 DG DN
- Lumix 70-200 f4
- Sigma 70-200 f2.8 DG DN
I have both the Lumix 70-200 f/4 and the Lumix 70-300 f/4.5-5.6. I got the 70-300 because the 70-200 was too large and heavy, plus I typically use it with a 1.4x extender so it is even longer.

I don't do much landscape with these lenses, they are for wildlife. But I am going in a different direction, and moving to micro four thirds for telephoto. I'm tired of lugging around large lenses. The last time I shot bears a friend had a G9, and honestly it was hard to tell his M43 photos from my full frame shots. I have a G9 II as a companion to my S5IIx, and I'm more into looking for M43 telephoto lenses than full frame telephoto lenses. I have a 35-100mm f/2.8 M43 that has equivalent reach to the Lumix 70-200 f/4 full frame, and it weighs 357 grams. And a 50-200 f/2.8-4.0 M43 that weighs 655 grams, plus 1.4x and 2x extenders.

About the 70-300, I seldom use it. I sold my Sony long lenses, intend to sell the Lumix 70-200, and may well sell the 70-300.
 
I made this little table up:

View attachment 2976

So, the Sigma is 360g heavier and 25mm longer.

When I was looking for a zoom telephoto lens, I decided against the two LUMIX 70-200s as they were both quite large and heavy (and expensive!). So I narrowed it down to the LUMIX 70-300mm and the Sigma 100-400mm.

I went into a store and was able to hand-hold both lenses and that pretty much decided it for me. The Sigma was considerably larger and heavier so I bought the 70-300mm and have been very pleased with it.

I just went to the "camera size with lens" web page and was able to select three of your four choices. The Sigma 70-200 isn't in their database yet. And I had to crop out the hood of the Sigma 100-400 which was included in the image whereas the others didn't show the hood.

So if size and weight are important, and I figure it must be if you are keen on the new LUMIX 28-200mm lens, then this image is worth considering:

Lenses.jpg

Having viewed your photos for a while now Paul, I think that the 28-200mm will just not have the level of sharpness across the frame that you desire. The sample images I have seen online don't have it.
 
The 70-300 is the smallest and lightest telephoto option for landscapes and some wildlife. If you don’t like it, I can’t imagine you will like any of the others with the exception of the 28-200, but are you really to compromise that much? The only reason I would consider giving up mine, is if there was a lighter, smaller 70-200/4 option available.
 
I was also thinking of selling my 70-300 for the 28-200, a lens I would use much more often then the 70-300. I only take a tele with me if I know I can see wildlife or to a zoo or something. A part of that reason was that my messenger bag doesn't like large lenses, but it can (barely) fit the S5ii with 70-300 attached if I reverse the hood. But this weekend I ordered a new backpack from K & F, so this "problem" doesn't exist any more hopefully.

Anyway, for Fuji I had a 18-135 (27-200mm FF) for while, but that one was plain bad >85mm and had ruined shots. But I liked the focal range very much. Replaced it with the 16-80/4 and 80mm (120mm ff) was enough for me already for landscape, but by far not enough for wildlife.

I think that 20-60 + 28-200 + 35/1.8 (or 45/2.8) would be my ultimate travel kit, and maybe in a distant future a real tele (150-600?). But I won't sell the 70-300 before I have the 28-200.

That travel kit would fit my messenger bag perfectly fine :cool: I just checked, the 70-300 is F5.5 at 200mm, so there is less then a stop difference compared to 28-200.

If Panasonic or Sigma would have a 135/2.8 or 150/2.8 and less then 550gram, I would not buy the 28-200, but that one.
 
Paul, you said that you hardly used your 70-300 and the few times you used, it was more or less in the focal range of your 24-105.

It might make sense if you first convince yourself of a specific use case when exactly you think you absolutely need a FL longer than 105mm. Under which circumstances, what would degrade in that case the image quality additionally, just because it is a longer distance (i.e. haze etc ). Is it worth it then?

You will feel the size/weight disadvantage every day, no matter whether you use that telezoom or not, as long as you take it with you. But is this "carry it with me all the time" burden worth it for the very few shots you will take with that telezoom?

For my kind of photography I need 98% of the time focal length ranges between 28mm and 90mm. Only in 2% of the time I need longer or wider.

I bought my 70-300 for sports only. Field hockey for my son. I never use it for something else. I never take it with me for something else. The 70-300 is my special use case lens which was only intended for that specific purpose. Nothing else. If there would have been a lighter/smaller alternative out there, I would have bought it instead.

But for my normal photography, I would not use it. This might change, if a very small and compact tele zoom will be made one day.

Even in vacation, if I want to take photos of my sons while they do surfing, I would take my MFT Lumix GX9 with the Olympus 70-300 telezoom and have a great combo for that specific use case. No fullframe system needed or wanted for that use case.

I almost never need a WA wider than 28mm. For a specific vacation I bought the Sigma 16-28/2.8 WA zoom. This was again only bought for that vacation only because I knew, I will need this WA there. I never used it afterwards. I keep it, but I will use it only in these 2% cases I was talking earlier and I only take it with me, if I know that I will need it for sure on that day. No burden to carry it with me for the "just in case" scenarios.

I normally take only 2-3 lenses with me. Although I have many different systems with many different lenses. In 98% of the time I take only 1 body and 2 lenses with me. Fits in my Billingham Hadley small pro.

If you can not define specific use cases for your tele zoom lens, with all pros and cons listed, you will end up burning your money while buying and selling all these telezooms or carrying too much stuff and weight with you with no added value for your kind of photography.
 
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Paul, you said that you hardly used your 70-300 and the few times you used, it was more or less in the focal range of your 24-105.

It might make sense if you first convince yourself of a specific use case when exactly you think you absolutely need a FL longer than 105mm. Under which circumstances, what would degrade in that case the image quality additionally, just because it is a longer distance (i.e. haze etc ). Is it worth it then?

You will feel the size/weight disadvantage every day, no matter whether you use that telezoom or not, as long as you take it with you. But is this "carry it with me all the time" burden worth it for the very few shots you will take with that telezoom?

For my kind of photography I need 98% of the time focal ranges between 28mm and 90mm. Only in 2% of the time I need longer or wider.

I bought my 70-300 for sports only. Field hockey for my son. I never use it for something else. I never take it with me for something else. The 70-300 is my special use case lens which was only intended for that specific purpose. Nothing else. If there would have been a lighter/smaller alternative out there, I would have bought it instead.

But for my normal photography, I would not use it. This might change, if a very small and compact tele zoom will be made one day.

Even in vacation, if I want to take photos of my sons while they do surfing, I would take my MFT Lumix GX9 with the Olympus 70-300 telezoom and have a great combo for that specific use case. No fullframe system needed or wanted for that use case.

I almost never need a WA wider than 28mm. For a specific vacation I bought the Sigma 16-28/2.8 WA zoom. This was again only bought for that vacation only because I knew, I will need this WA there. I never used it afterwards. I keep it, but I will use it only in these 2% cases I was talking earlier and I only take it with me, if I know that I will need it for sure on that day. No burden to carry it with me for the "just in case" scenarios.

I normally take only 2-3 lenses with me. Although I have many different systems with many different lenses. In 98% of the time I take only 1 body and 2 lenses with me. Fits in my Billingham Hadley small pro.

If you can not define specific use cases for your tele zoom lens, with all pros and cons listed, you will end up burning your money while buying and selling all these telezooms or carrying too much stuff and weight with you with no added value for your kind of photography.
That's really excellent advice Dirk. In truth, I don't use the 70-300 really for two reasons:

- I don't often need that sort of reach.
- It's inconvenient (size, weight) to have it in my bag for the rare occasions I need it.
It would be interesting to know why you didn't use the 70-300 to give you some opinions.
Yes, exactly. As per the comment above, it's a case of "too big & heavy for the rare occasions I need the reach".


I think I'll sit tight with the 24-105 as my longest lens until I can get my hands on a 28-200 to test it in the sort of scenes I shoot.
 
Does it need to be native? I have an EF 70-200 f4L IS and it's about as sharp as my 24-105 and under $500 used and 760g or so (but with length and weight of adapter).

I only use mine with a dumb adapter as I plan to sell it and my only EF lens I plan to keep is a manual Samyang 14 2.8
 
That's really excellent advice Dirk. In truth, I don't use the 70-300 really for two reasons:

- I don't often need that sort of reach.
- It's inconvenient (size, weight) to have it in my bag for the rare occasions I need it.

Yes, exactly. As per the comment above, it's a case of "too big & heavy for the rare occasions I need the reach".
....

You don't need the reach of the 70-300 that often? Why even consider the 100-400?
The size and weight of the 70-300 bothered to? Even the 70-200/4 is 200 g more than the 70-300. The 2.8 is 70 % heavier.

Something tells me, you may will get the 70-300 again in a couple of months.
 
You don't need the reach of the 70-300 that often? Why even consider the 100-400?
The size and weight of the 70-300 bothered to? Even the 70-200/4 is 200 g more than the 70-300. The 2.8 is 70 % heavier.

Something tells me, you may will get the 70-300 again in a couple of months.
You're too cruel !

But I agree actually. I'm going to do nothing until I can test the 28-200 properly.
 
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