While on safari I like to keep my equipment streamlined and light. Over many years photographing in South Africa, my Canon 70 – 200mm f2.8 has taken the bulk of my wildlife images. I have now updated my long lens to the Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM Lens with the EF 1.4 x II extender
This new addition plus my other lenses gives me full coverage for everything except the far, far distant shots – which don’t happen that often since the wildlife in South Africa tends to be close. It is also comparatively light and compact.
Features of the Canon EF 400
- Full Frame
- Gapless dual-layer diffractive optics
- Aperture range f/4 to f/32
- One Aspherical Element, One UD Element
- Advanced image stabilization technology
- Corrects for chromatic and spherical aberrations
- Especially important to me is that it is relatively light weight and compact (much better than my former 400mm lens!)
- Fluorine coating on the front and rear elements for protection against fingerprints etc.
- AF stop buttons for focusing located on the front of the lens as well as full time manual focus override and power focus mode for smooth shifting.
- Compatible with the EF 1.4 and EF 2x teleconverters
I find this lens to be very easy to travel with, carry, and shoot with while on safari; either from a vehicle with a monopod or while on the ground with a tripod. It offers me the correct range for shooting wildlife while on safari, for bears, or polar bears.
If my trips were more birding oriented I would travel with a longer lens, but I am happy with the combo I have for now.