General Nature Technical & Testing Video

Trying the Canon 100-300mm Again… Cold Winter Nature Photo Outing

I haven’t had great luck with the used Canon EF 100-300mm f4.5-5.6 USM lens I bought a few months ago. Though, a lot of the problems so far are from not having enough light to try smaller apertures hand held. On this photo outing I was able to get out in the field early enough and brought along a tripod plus a wired cable release.

The YouTube video you can see visuals of the photo outing.

Get the Viltrox Speedbooster on B&H or Amazon.
Get the Canon EOS M5 on eBay, B&H or Amazon.
Get the Canon EOS M50 on B&H or Amazon.
Look for the Canon 100-300mm on eBay here.

Combining a brighter day with the Viltrox 0.71x EF to EOS M speedbooster adapter allowed me to really test things out. I was using the Canon EOS M5 for photos and the M50 for video. I walk around a snow covered state park to try out this combo so that I could better learn what the lens is capable of along with just enjoying photography, as usual.

One of the photos spots in the video. Tree bark texture is a great ever unique subject.

Compared to a standard adapter, the Viltrox speedbooster uses an additional portion of the EF lens full-frame image circle and focuses it down into the APS-C format. With old EF lenses like this, it tends to improve quality of the resulting photos. At least in the center of the frame. The speedbooster adds its own set of optical flaws to the photos such as strong left and right edge vignetting along with blurring there due to the optical elements in the speedbooster. At the very least, this is what I’ve experienced so far with multiple film and early digital era EF lenses such as this 100-300mm, the 135mm f2.8 soft focus, 50mm f1.8, and the EF 85mm f1.8 lens.

An edited image with speedboosted settings of 131 mm, f-6.3, ISO 200, 1-160 s (speed boosted)

The above image is one quick example of the lens. Toward the wider end you can expect better results than near 300mm. While the aperture says f.6.3 that’s taking into account the EXIF does use adjusted settings because the Viltrox adapter does apply it’s 0.71x modification automatically. The top portion of a full view and the bottom is a 100% crop toward the center of the image. Not too bad.

The image quality difference at 100% is visible here at the boosted 71mm (114mm) between two photos at f/5.6 and f/8. The smaller aperture has a lot more definition everywhere in the image.

After this outing, I do think the lens is capable of producing decent images when the apertures is stopped down enough. The challenge comes with using something like f/8 at 200mm when I’m using a speedbooster. Using the normal adapter will make the situation worse. At least with the M5 and M50 camera bodies, going high ISO quickly makes the images a noisy mess.

From my limited use of a borrowed EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM Lens for volleyball photos, I think that design is overall better than this one optically. The negative of that design is that the manual focus ring moves when the lens is in autofocus mode, which makes it more awkward to use in practice.

A screen capture from the video. I’ve been trying to pick up litter after I finish with a photo outing to my local parks.

Lately I’ve been finishing off my photo outing videos with a quick litter pick up session. This time it was pretty bad even though the snow should be hiding a lot of the trash. I don’t get what is with people that are so inconsiderate. The especially irritating thing about this outing was that there were large dumpsters withing a short walk to the parking area. My goal here with including this topic in the video and on the site is to motivate fellow photographers, or frankly anyone that notices, to take a stand against people that do these things.

We have enough large problems as it is with how much humanity has taken over and re-purposed nature to our whims. We don’t need even more damage done by introducing harmful materials to the environment that turn into things create impossible to fix problems like micro plastics. There is no sifting the water and dirt to remove that.

Get the Viltrox Speedbooster on B&H or Amazon.
Get the Canon EOS M5 on eBay, B&H or Amazon.
Get the Canon EOS M50 on B&H or Amazon.
Look for the Canon 100-300mm on eBay here.

Video Transcription:

Got quite the haul this time... ahh man!

Hey, this is Scott of Photography Banzai. 
Today we're out with

this long telephoto lens again. Try to
get some decent photos with it. It hasn't

been working too well. I know I'm
generally pretty lax.. loose.. about image

quality. But sometimes with telephoto
lenses they're just so bad that can't do too

much with it. So it's pretty bright right
now. I'm gonna try to first start with

the Viltrox speed booster. Gonna try a
mix of apertures so I can have something

to look at later on...

I think might just switch to some normal
artistic photos.

Telephoto lenses are a

nice combination for tripod work. Because
especially with a long telephoto you can

get a better look. You don't have to move
around as much.

Of course, moving will help out sometimes.
But with that extra long zoom it can be

pretty useful on a tripod. The edge where
it's pretty nice. Can use that to your

advantage. Because there is some clear
water. Gonna mess around a little bit

more with that.

These plants are great
subject. They have some nice interest to

them. I can use the background of a
little white and blue, or I can mix it up and

just have a long span of those in the
background. Still in the same spot.

There's a lot of little interesting
things here and there. And these red...

whatever they are... I don't know, but I'm gonna try to I take some photos of that one.

Even just how the snow is shaped over here it
looks pretty interesting. I'm going to

angle the tripod a little bit and take a
photo of that.

I've been used in the back

screen a lot, but actually the viewfinder
is very good in these situations with

the super bright snow. I can actually
see what I'm framing. It's up to your

imagination. So in this case I'm just
going to get a texture instead of

something different. It's gonna be pretty
uniform. It's only like 30 degrees, but it

feels super cold. I think it's the wind.
Let's keep looking around. Maybe some

more textures, or something else.

Ooo, oouuuuu

Autofocus is super responsive with
that Viltrox and this Canon lens.

All the trees are actually a great
opportunity for texture. Because I'm

looking at the bark of each one and 
they're slightly different, very

different. So I'm gonna try some of those texture photos.

The Sun is blocked by some clouds.

It looks pretty interesting though, so
I'm going to try a photo of that.

I'm gonna try some photos here of the lake.

Here I can see a path in the snow of some sort.

Gonna try to take a photo that. Looks kind
of interesting how it curves...

Man this pisses me off. That.. see up there? Garbage can is over there.

I think that's it for today. It's pretty
cold. Gonna deal with this trash that someone

decided to leave around, of course.

Deja vu from one of my previous videos. 
Same spot actually...

Came prepared this time.
Didn't want to use it because that's

trash itself, but I do have a bag.

Oh, they've go names on it. Heidi, come on! What the **** are you're doing?

Oh it's Heidi again! Get your act
together Heidi.

Now that I'm using the bag I might as well check the other spots.

I did see some in the water, but I'm not sure I'll be able to get to those.

Now we've got McDonald's for some reason.