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Ralph -- I can't say it's as sharp precisely as the 70-200 or 70-300, but I can say it is plenty sharp enough wide open, and excellent at f/5.6-8.0. I would also say it has a slight inherent softness wide open that lends itself beautifully to people and activities (not product shots or architecture!).
I'm never going to bill myself as a wedding photographer, although I like weddings, when they are in my realm of entertainment. I had the opportunity to use this lens last weekend for the first time as my sole wedding lens for the pre-, wedding, and reception. My simple assessment: totally awesome! I used the 5D2 with battery grip and 580EX II flash -- that's it (although I had a 60D with 15-85 as back-up, and a Samyang 35/1.4, plus Oly E-P2 with 14-42 & 40-150 as double-deep back-up). Only the 5D2 and 28-300 were used. Although this rig is moderately heavy, it is still lighter than two cameras, or carrying another bag with lenses. Everything is relative.
I really loved the rendition outdoors in semi-overcast Oregon conditions. Here are a few shots taken there. All shots hand held with IS on. LR4 used for PP.
Granted, these shots don't show the focal range. But I used 28 and 35 settings extensively indoors for prep, ceremony, and reception, and for general candids. The telephoto end was used several times at 200+ to catch moments at a distance. Most of the indoor was shot wide open, between f/3.5 and 5.6 -- the 24-105L could have done 90% of the work of this lens for this event, but not all events.
I'd just walked out of the house from photographing bride's make-up progress and had the camera set on ISO 1600 -- wouldn't be my first choice for detail. Great quick grab shot!
"Groom contemplating the compromises of life, prior to ceremony."
105mm, f/6.3, 1/4000 sec
The following shots are all post-ceremony. The wedding took place at the bride and groom's recently purchased home on 10 acres.
80mm, f/8, 1/200, ISO 100
40mm, f/6.3, 1/320, ISO 100
50mm, f/6.3, 1/250, ISO 100
40mm, f/5.6, 1/250, ISO 100
IS made these mext shots possible in the shade at low ISO.
65mm, f/7.1, 1/50, ISO 200
50mm, f/5.6, 1/50, ISO 100
28mm, f/6.3, 1/200, ISO 100