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80-400 VR vs. 70-200 VR

Discussion in 'General Technical Discussion' started by frogpix, May 17, 2005.

  1. Hi Group,

    Can somebody let me in on how these two lenses perform under the same conditions? I have the 80-400 and am trying to decide whether to keep it and live with it, or buy the 70-200 and a converter. Is the 80-400 much better on a tripod with the Kirk or RRS lens mount?

    I shot some stuff the other day wide open and found that things were not as sharp as they might have been.


  2. Preston


    May 2, 2005
    Reno, NV
    From all the things I've read the 70-200 VR will be a much better lense, even with teleconverters on so they have equal focal lenths
  3. Rob G.

    Rob G. Guest

    Hi Steve,

    I also have the 80-400 VR. I find this lens very sharp but not in all situations. But it can produce great images like here:

    From what I've heard the 70-200 VR and the TC gets equally quality images. Some even said that the 80-400 VR is better than the 70-200 VR + TC. Don't know if that's true, I don't own a 70-200VR or a TC :) 

    The 300/2.8 has better image quality than both, but it's bulky and pricy..

    I'm happy with the 80-400 VR allthough the obvious shortcommings..

  4. I had the 80-400 and I have the 70-200. I have to vote for the 70-200 plus teleconverter between the two. It's not that the 80-400 isn't a great lens capable of great images, it's that the 80-400 was slow as molassas at tracking moving objects. When taking images of static subjects it was as sharp as the 70-200. But since the 80-400 can only be used manually with older style tc's it is mostley limited to the same focal length as the 70-200 which has a dual personality with and without tc's.

    Here are some good examples of a 70-200 + tc17eII. It is also a very nice 400 with the tc20eII. I would say about the same quality of image as the 80-400 at 400 especially mounted on a good tripod.


    Also if you go toward the bottom of this thread, you will see a couple of shots I took using the 70-200 handheld with and without a tc20eII at maximum focal distance.

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  5. mrdinh


    Mar 8, 2005
    North Dakota

    1. f2.8 afs faster and quieter focusing than the 80-400
    2. heavier than the 80-400
    3. sharper images with teleconverters
    4. cost more than the 80-400
    5. less reach than the 80-400

    probably more diff but thats all i can think of now...its too early in the morning...need coffee
  6. jfrancis


    May 8, 2005
    Orlando, FL
    Way better bokeh than the 80-400.
  7. eng45ine


    May 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    Hi Steve,

    I purchased both lenses but sold the 80-400 because it was a slower lens being a f4-5.6 and I prefer to have all f2.8 glass. As far as quality, it is a very good performer and serves it's purpose well. I sold mine to a friend and he thoroughly enjoys it.
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