Saturday 8 October 2011

Saturday Night Quickie - Stuffed for Canon Long Lenses

Just a quick quickie tonight.

Checking through Camerapricebuster this week, as I do from time to time, it seems Canon have finally chosen to stuff you up if you want a decent long lens.

Until recently you could get the 500f4 IS L for about £5500 - still masses more than the £3800 I paid about five years ago.

Back earlier this year, they bought out the mark11 version, with a massive price hike up to £9000, in line with their other pricing policy such as they did with the 1Dmk4, which took a straight 50% uplift on like for like launch RRP prices.

Well, it looks like you cant even get a 'cheap' mark 1 version at 5.5K any more and you are stuck with the the mark 2 at £8489.

There has been a massive growth in sales of these long lenses for wildlife photographers since I bought mine. A visit to any wildlife 'honeypot' site will demonstrate that. There only used to be a few other guys with them in the first couple of years I had mine, but over the last couple there has been a massive explosion of numbers. I guess with the economic conditions, and manufacturers really taking the pi** price wise, I guess we will not see big number of the new models in evidence.

Thanks once again Canon



  1. Thats a very good point Martin. The 500F4 would be my next lens of choice for the 'sport' Im chasing, at £5.5k its doable but very hard to justify. However with the massive hike for the MKII its very much out of the question now!

    How long will it be before parts are not available for the MK I thus forcing the customers hand?

  2. Big question in my mind is where does that leave me when I have to give a value to my insurance company for my mk1.
    I have a new for old policy and have been valuing it at £5500, the price of a new one. However do I now have to give a price of £8500?
    The answer I suppose is to contact my insurance company and ask them but I can only see one outcome in that - a rise in the premium.

  3. Mark, Bob, thanks for comments.

    Mark, yes it is fine for the full pro's who could justify it on business grounds, although there will be a huge number of pros that the marginal cost will not be affordable. But for the serious amateur/semi pro the proposition is really now very daft and one questions the marketing/pricing strategy.

    Bob, your point is a very good and valid one and has been a useful reminder to me to speak to my insurance company. At the end of the day, it is not the insurance co. fault and I cannot see how they could/would /should do anything other than carry on with the policy of % based on full replacement price, if that is what you have.

    My point is that once again Canon choose to stuff us on their pricing. My next body change will involve serious thoughts as to whether I stay with Canon, when I get to that point, whenever that is.

    Let us know the views from your insurance company

  4. Hi Martin,
    Only just got round to reading the last few days blogs. As much as I agree about Canon putting up prices,unfortunately it is not all there fault. A few years ( maybe 5) ago the pound/yen was very much in favour of us UK photographers. If I remember rightly £1 was equal to around 225 yen. A quick look at today's exchange rates and we can see why lenses etc. are just so much more expensive. It is now £1 to 119 Yen. Nearly half and infact it's been down to less than 100 at times. So yes I agree Canon aren't helping but then neither is the British economy!!!!!!
    All the best,
    Neil Kristiansen.