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Hello everyone,

I currently have the excellent 24-105 f4 lens, I'm wanting to add another zoom to my kit with more reach. I have an 85mm f1.8 to cover my portraits but i love how the 70-200 f2.8 renders and isolates at 200mm. If i pick up the 100-400 it would mostly be used for landscapes and wildlife.  I am interested to know though if it would work well for portraits? Obviously the apertures are very different but I'm wanting an exceptional lens than gives me the most diversity. I'd love to hear from owners of both lenses.

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Hi,

I have the 100-400 GM in my gear (among others) and find it quite a good lens. Its obvious use, as you mention it, is wildlife (or sports) photography. But I use it mainly for landscape (for the reach and compression) and also occasionally for outdoor portraits (moving subjects). It does a very decent job even if its widest aperture is 4.5 at 100mm and 5 at 135 mm which are usual focal lengths for portraits. At longer focal lengths, you can even increase the separation from the background and I like to shoot wide open (F5.6) at 300mm which is even sharper than 200mm on this lens. The focus on the eyes works extremely well (and this might be even better with the new A7RIII /A7III firmware release!). Of course, I prefer to use my 85 GM for portraits and more specifically for sudio work, but the 100-400 gives very decent results.

It gives also very nice results for close photography of rather small objects like flowers, my favorite focal length in this case being 200mm.

Since you own already the 24-105, you will have a significant overlap with the 70-200 GM : to my knowledge (I tested it) the 24-105 delivers quite a good performance in the range 70-105. So, except if you need to shoot indoors (with no flash or additional lights) where the 2.8 aperture will be a great advantage, , the 100-400 would be in my opinion an excellent complement to your 24-105.

 

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On 4/10/2019 at 12:27 AM, PHDX said:

Hi,

I have the 100-400 GM in my gear (among others) and find it quite a good lens. Its obvious use, as you mention it, is wildlife (or sports) photography. But I use it mainly for landscape (for the reach and compression) and also occasionally for outdoor portraits (moving subjects). It does a very decent job even if its widest aperture is 4.5 at 100mm and 5 at 135 mm which are usual focal lengths for portraits. At longer focal lengths, you can even increase the separation from the background and I like to shoot wide open (F5.6) at 300mm which is even sharper than 200mm on this lens. The focus on the eyes works extremely well (and this might be even better with the new A7RIII /A7III firmware release!). Of course, I prefer to use my 85 GM for portraits and more specifically for sudio work, but the 100-400 gives very decent results.

It gives also very nice results for close photography of rather small objects like flowers, my favorite focal length in this case being 200mm.

Since you own already the 24-105, you will have a significant overlap with the 70-200 GM : to my knowledge (I tested it) the 24-105 delivers quite a good performance in the range 70-105. So, except if you need to shoot indoors (with no flash or additional lights) where the 2.8 aperture will be a great advantage, , the 100-400 would be in my opinion an excellent complement to your 24-105.

 

Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences and opinions, this lens has peaked my interest for landscape purposes. I stumbled across this great review recently Sony 100-400 gm Landscape review

The 24-105 is a fantastic lens that I use for general purpose photography, significant overlap is something i'm trying to avoid in my kit...this is why I'm leaning towards the 100-400 lens. I think that I would find more applications for this lens in my travel photography kit than the 70-200.

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It depends on a lot of things :) A few thoughts:

You can definitely take portraits with the 100-400 but you won’t typically get much separation with the background. Of course it depends on how far you are to the subject and where the background is but the 70-200 with f2.8 would always be easier to get more isolation.

Although some people would say the 70-200 overlaps with the 24-105, if you use the 1.4x teleconverter with the 70-200 then it’s 98-280 at f4 so basically no overlap. Also, you can also use the 2x teleconverter with the 70-200 at f5.6 and it’s actually pretty good. Check out these images I took here with the 70-200 and 2x vs the 100-400.

If you are serious about shooting wildlife you will want reach and more reach because sometimes the animals are really far away or small, or both. That means the 100-400 and likely with the 1.4x on there and possibly even the 2x if you absolutely have to. The 100-400 with the 1.4x is pretty good. Less so with the 2.x.

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On 4/30/2019 at 5:07 AM, 2xbass said:

It depends on a lot of things :) A few thoughts:

You can definitely take portraits with the 100-400 but you won’t typically get much separation with the background. Of course it depends on how far you are to the subject and where the background is but the 70-200 with f2.8 would always be easier to get more isolation.

Although some people would say the 70-200 overlaps with the 24-105, if you use the 1.4x teleconverter with the 70-200 then it’s 98-280 at f4 so basically no overlap. Also, you can also use the 2x teleconverter with the 70-200 at f5.6 and it’s actually pretty good. Check out these images I took here with the 70-200 and 2x vs the 100-400.

If you are serious about shooting wildlife you will want reach and more reach because sometimes the animals are really far away or small, or both. That means the 100-400 and likely with the 1.4x on there and possibly even the 2x if you absolutely have to. The 100-400 with the 1.4x is pretty good. Less so with the 2.x.

I'm sorry, i didn't see your reply until today....thank you

So I went ahead and ordered a 100-400mm, I'll get some hands on time next week.

Unless a unique opportunity presents itself, I agree that there won't be enough separation of the background for portraits. Instead my plans for this lens will be to photograph wildlife and distant landscapes on my travels. A 1.4x teleconverter  is something i plan on buying in the future.

I appreciate the comparison photographs...fantastic captures btw....Thanks :D

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I own both the 100-400 and the 70-200 f4 version.  I still use the 70-200 when the F4 aperture and lighter weight are more important than reach.  Both lenses are excellent, the 100-400 has provided me with marvelous images of birds, kids playing soccer, and portraits when I want the compression effect of a tele.  Optically it is an amazing lens; I'm certain you will enjoy yours.  Here is a shot of an owl, taken in near darkness, hence ISO 4000.   

owl.jpg

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6 hours ago, tinplater said:

I own both the 100-400 and the 70-200 f4 version.  I still use the 70-200 when the F4 aperture and lighter weight are more important than reach.  Both lenses are excellent, the 100-400 has provided me with marvelous images of birds, kids playing soccer, and portraits when I want the compression effect of a tele.  Optically it is an amazing lens; I'm certain you will enjoy yours.  Here is a shot of an owl, taken in near darkness, hence ISO 4000.   

It's images like yours that really swayed my decision to purchase the 100-400mm, all the examples are so sharp and of such high quality. I'm really excited to get some hands on experience....thank you :)

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