Gila Woodpecker/female. Sabino Canyon. Canon 600mm f/L IS
EF 2X II tele-converter and EOS 1V body.
On my recent
trip to Arizona, and then Texas, I had
the chance to field test both the Canon EF Tele-converter
1.4X II and the Canon EF Tele-converter 2X II. Though I
have seen only my AZ images, I have seen enough to form an
opinion, and since so many folks have written asking for my
thoughts, I will share them with you here.
Both of the Series II TCs have a sleeker, more militaristic
look and feel to them. There is a narrow, knurled grip on
each of them that makes handling them a bit surer; I dropped
my old TCs onto concrete too many times..... The 2X has a
recessed area just forward of the knurled grip that also
makes handling easier.
As expected, the 1.4X II consistently produced superbly
sharp images. And while judging sharpness with a 4X loupe
is somewhat subjective, I was blown away by the incredible
sharpness of many of the images made with the new 2X II
tele-converter and the Canon EF 600mm f/4.0 L Image
Stabilizer lens, making that combination now even more
deadly. And that is saying a lot. As I had made many,
sharp images with the old 2X TC I could not imagine being
blown away by the results with the 2X II, but I was.
When I stacked the new TCs by inserting the nose-end of
the 1.4X II into the rear of the 2X II (remember, it is no
longer necessary to use a 12mm extension tube), I was
pleasantly surprised to find that the setup autofocused
accurately and fairly quickly as long as there was
sufficient light and some contrast to work with. This is a
huge advantage because focusing manually with stacked
multipliers is a difficult proposition at best.
Lastly, Arizona subscriber E.J. Peiker reports that light
fall-off in the corners is greatly reduced with the TC 2XII
as compared to the old 2X TC. E.J.'s tests were conducted
by photographing the clear blue sky with the 300mm f/2.8 L
IS lens wide open. I would be interested in hearing from
others who are using the Canon EF 2X II tele-converter; both
positive and critical comments are welcome.