Canon 100-400 II

Canon 100-400 L IS IIThe Canon 100-400 II is Canon’s semi-pro zoom lens for sports and wildlife. I owned the original 100-400 for 11 years. I liked using it, and the image stabilization worked well, but it was never sharp at 400mm… and about 80% of my pictures were taken at 400mm. That’s where wildlife photography happens; at the longest end of the longest lens you have. I sold the original 100-400 and bought the amazing Canon 400mm f/5.6 prime, and was blown away by the sharpness and handholdability. Sure, it doesn’t have zoom, and it doesn’t have image stabilization, but it gave pro results. I’ve talked¬†at least 100 people into switching from the 100-400 to the 400 f/5.6 prime, and they all thanked me for it. But¬†this new generation 100-400 II is a far better than lens than it’s predecessor. In our video test, we found it to be very slightly sharper than our beloved 400mm f/5.6 prime, and that’s quite a feat. However, it’s also significantly more¬†expensive than the prime, despite giving similar results¬†and¬†being much heavier¬†(and thus less hike-able). So, for wildlife, we still push most people towards the 400mm f/5.6 prime. If you think you’ll be zooming back below 400mm, save the extra budget for a Sigma or Tamron 70-200mm. If you’re convinced you need image stabilization at 400mm, the 100-400 II¬†is the lens to get. If you watch our video test above, you’ll see that¬†we found the 100-400 II to be sharper than the Sigma and Tamron 150-600mm lenses… not just at 400mm, but also at 600mm. Yes, we cropped from 400mm to 600mm, and the 100-400 II was still SIGNIFICANTLY sharper. There’s no reason to buy those 150-600mm lenses; just use this lens and crop.