Category Archives: Lenses

Canon Extender 2x III teleconverter review

In this review, I do a review of the Canon Extender 2x III teleconverter. I rented this from Lensrentalscanada.com along with a Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L lens and the 1.4x III teleconverter hoping to get some amazing bird photos. After over 1000 shots with the lens alone, the 1.4x and the 2x teleconverters, my sad conclusion is that the lens alone probably gave me the best results.

Sure the 1.4x and 2x teleconverters do zoom in the image by 1.4x and 2x respectively, but they also deteriorate the image quality by a good amount, so taking a photo without the teleconverter and cropping it down usually gave very similar results without many of the inconveniences that comes from using a teleconverter (lost of 1-2 stops of light which sometimes disables autofocus on some lens/camera combinations).

All photos in this video are as-is .jpgs coming right out of the camera with no post-processing. Definitely some post-processing would improve some of these, but I want to show the files as they come, not after spending hours refining a RAW file. I first show the full image, then I zoom in 1:1.

Canon Extender 1.4x III teleconverter review

In this review, I do a review of the Canon Extender 1.4x III teleconverter. I rented this from Lensrentalscanada.com along with a Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L lens and the 2x III teleconverter hoping to get some amazing bird photos. After over 1000 shots with the lens alone, the 1.4x and the 2x teleconverters, my sad conclusion is that the lens alone probably gave me the best results.

Sure the 1.4x and 2x teleconverters do zoom in the image by 1.4x and 2x respectively, but they also deteriorate the image quality by a good amount, so taking a photo without the teleconverter and cropping it down usually gave very similar results without many of the inconveniences that comes from using a teleconverter (lost of 1-2 stops of light which sometimes disables autofocus on some lens/camera combinations).

All photos in this video are as-is .jpgs coming right out of the camera with no post-processing. Definitely some post-processing would improve some of these, but I want to show the files as they come, not after spending hours refining a RAW file. I first show the full image, then I zoom in 1:1.

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L lens review a great super telephoto lens for bird photography

Support these reviews by finding out more about this lens at one of our affiliates:
Adorama: http://www.adorama.com/CA40056AFU.html?KBID=67818
Amazon (US): http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00009USW3/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=211189&creative=373489&creativeASIN=B00009USW3&link_code=as3&tag=sj0c-20&linkId=LEUGXRJP5MPAHLTJ
Amazon (Canada): http://www.amazon.ca/gp/product/B0000C4GAP/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=212553&creative=381305&creativeASIN=B0000C4GAP&link_code=as3&tag=sj02-20
eBay: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/706-53473-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=200&pub=5575018904&toolid=10001&campid=5337487677&customid=&epid=99691852&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229529&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg&ff16=99691852&lgeo=0

In this video, I do a review of the Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L lens. This is a great super telephoto lens for bird photography. The image quality on this lens is superb, and the build quality is even more impressive. Made from solid metal, I’d feel safe carrying this in the woods in case I need to knock out a bear or two.

The major downsides are the aperture and lack of image stabilization (IS), which may or may not be deal breakers depending what you take photos of. Using a 400mm lens, the depth of field is really small, so I realistically probably wouldn’t use a lens at f/2.8 or even f/4 too often, unless the subject was far enough away. With aperture of f/5.6 at a distance of 6 feet on a full frame camera such as the Canon 6D, you get a depth of field of 0.2 inches. In metric, at 2 meters, you get a depth of field of 0.65 cm. An aperture of f/2.8 would half those depths of field, which would make it unusable for most situations.

As for lack of IS, if you’re doing bird photography at 1/2000 or faster shutter speeds, the images should be sharp with or without IS. If you plan on using this lens indoors in bad lighting conditions, though, prepare to use ISOs in the 12’800 to 102’400 and wishing your camera could go in the millions of ISO.

The lack of IS is much more an issue for video work, where I’ve had some success handholding it and applying the warp stabilizer in Adobe Premiere Pro. It doesn’t turn it into tripod-steady footage, but closer to steadycam footage, which is usually quite acceptable.

Using a teleconverter, though, the image quality dropped quite a bit, and the aperture of f/8 (1.4x) and f/11 (2x) disabled the autofocus on my Canon 6D camera, which made this lens quite harder to use. But used without any converters, the autofocus was fast and accurate.

Overall I quite enjoyed renting this lens, and I’m looking forward to comparing it to other similar lenses such as the Canon 100-400mm L and the Tamron 150-600mm lens. My guess is the zoom versions would be more versatile in parts because of the zoom, but also because of the image stabilization, but for image quality, I believe the 400mm f/5.6L would come out on top by a large margin.

Lens Rentals Canada review

In this video I do a review of the Lens Rentals Canada camera and lens rental service: www.lensrentalscanada.com

I wanted to test out the Canon 400mm f/5.6L with 1.4x and 2x teleconverters for some wildlife photography. I’m still not decided which lens I would like to purchase, if any, so renting seemed like the most logical choice.

For a very affordable price, I was able to rent the lens and teleconverters for 10 days, which gave me plenty of time to test things out and take some great wildlife photos.

I received the lens the same week I put in the order, and it came in pristine quality. The lens and teleconverters were perfectly clean, and everything was in like-new condition.

I picked up the lens at my local Canada Post office on the expected delivery date, and on the last day of the rental I dropped it off to the local Canada Post office. It came with all the pre-paid paperwork, and the local Canada Post office helped me removing the old data and putting the new one in.

For a very small amount, you can add a damage waiver where if the lens accidently gets damaged, you only have a 10% deductible to pay and they take care of repairing or replacing the lens. The few dollars extra this costs is definitely worth it to give the peace of mind in case the worst happens. Thankfully everything went well and I returned the lens in the same condition I got it (except probably not as clean), so I thankfully can’t comment on this add-on service, but online reviews I read seem to be favourable even in those cases. :)

So if you live in Canada and want to rent out a lens for a special project / vacation, or want to rent backup gear for a wedding or other event, I definitely recommend checking them out.

My biggest disappointment is their third-party selection is quite small. There are a couple of Tamron lens I’d love to test which they don’t yet have in stock, but I noticed they did add some other third party lenses in the last 6 months, so there’s still hope for the future.

Studio JPIC 2013 Year in Review and 2014 Preview

In this video, I do a recap of what I have been up to in 2013 and what’s to come in 2014. If you hover over any video, a link should appear to bring you to it in a new window.

Happy New Year everyone!

In this video, I do a VC and AF noise test for the Tamron SP 24-70mm Di VC f/2.8 lens. I wanted to ensure that the Autofocus and Vibration Control noise of this lens would not be too distracting in a quiet environment, and I think it did quite well.

The AF test was done on a low-contrast subject with my T2i camera, which uses older Autofocus mechanisms, but it still did quite well. From using this lens for a couple of months already, I’d say it is a good focuser.

Check out this lens at any of our affiliates:
Adorama: http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/default.aspx?searchinfo=tamron+24-70mm&KBID=67818
eBay: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=9&pub=5575018904&toolid=10001&campid=5337406802&customid=&icep_uq=Tamron+24-70mm&icep_sellerId=&icep_ex_kw=&icep_sortBy=12&icep_catId=&icep_minPrice=&icep_maxPrice=&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229466&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg
Amazon (US): http://www.amazon.com/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&index=aps&keywords=Tamron%2024-70mm&linkCode=ur2&tag=sj0c-20
Amazon (Canada): http://www.amazon.ca/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=15121&creative=330641&index=aps&keywords=Tamron%2024-70mm&linkCode=ur2&tag=sj02-20

Tamron SP 24-70 Di VC f/2.8 USM Unboxing

In this video, I do an unboxing of the Tamron SP 24-70 Di VC f/2.8 lens. My initial thoughts on this lens is I absolutely love it. It’s sharp, has a nice aperture, and has vibration control, which is great for both photos and videos.

At half the price of a Canon 24-70mm II, I feel this is a great deal.

Check out this lens at any of our affiliates:
Adorama: http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/default.aspx?searchinfo=tamron+24-70mm&KBID=67818
eBay: http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?icep_ff3=9&pub=5575018904&toolid=10001&campid=5337406802&customid=&icep_uq=Tamron+24-70mm&icep_sellerId=&icep_ex_kw=&icep_sortBy=12&icep_catId=&icep_minPrice=&icep_maxPrice=&ipn=psmain&icep_vectorid=229466&kwid=902099&mtid=824&kw=lg
Amazon (US): http://www.amazon.com/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&index=aps&keywords=Tamron%2024-70mm&linkCode=ur2&tag=sj0c-20
Amazon (Canada): http://www.amazon.ca/gp/search/ref=as_li_qf_sp_sr_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=15121&creative=330641&index=aps&keywords=Tamron%2024-70mm&linkCode=ur2&tag=sj02-20

I will be posting more videos on this lens as I do more tests for VC, autofocus, image quality, etc, and a final review at the end, but so far I have to say I’m really loving this lens.

Tokina 11-16 vs Canon 16-35mm on full frame

In this video, Dom Bower compares the Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 L lens to the Tokina 11-16mm DX lens.

Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f1.5 – new

In this video, Matt Granger from PhotoNewsReviews/ThatNikonGuy interviews a rep from Voigtlander about the newly released Voigtlander Nokton 50mm f/1.5 lens. The original lens sells for insane prices on the second hand market, so there is definitely a market for these great quality lenses.

Panasonic 14-42mm micro 4/3 version 2

In this video, Matt Granger from PhotoNewsReviews/ThatNikonGuy does a hands-on review of the Panasonic 14-42mm micro 4/3 version 2 lens. The image quality seems much better with the new one, and the smaller size is definitely interesting also for micro 4/3 users.