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Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

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534 904121 Mar 26, 2014
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89% of reviewers $1,192.24
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.69
8.38
9.3
ef_24-70_28u_1_

Specifications:
This new lens does what many pros thought couldn't be done - replace the previous L-series 28-70 f/2.8 lens with something even better. Extended coverage to an ultra-wide angle 24mm makes it ideal for digital as well as film shooters, and the optics are even better than before with two Aspherical elements and a totally new UD glass element. It's now sealed and gasketed against dust and moisture, and a new processing unit makes the AF faster than ever.


 


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petr vokurek
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Registered: Apr 16, 2007
Location: Czech Republic
Posts: 3
Review Date: Jun 25, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness right from f 2,8, well built, reliability...overall quality
Cons:
I don´t like the fact that the front barrel goes out when zooming towards the wide end. In this respect I much prefer the 17-40/4 that stays the same when zooming. On the other hand, this design helps to make the best use of the deep lens hood.

This is a must lens if you are an event photographer using a FF camera- this and the 70-200/2,8. With this combo you are able to do practicly anything. On an Eos 5d this lens is extremly useful for general shooting. What I like best about it is the fact it never lets me down and I can always rely on its performance even wide open. I use it at f 2,8 very often and the reults are always sharp. I am not a pixel-peeper and judge by real-life photos. I actually find it sharper in the corners at f 2,8 than my EF 28/1,8. Also the build quality is very good and it has served me well ever since I got it some 5 years ago. If you stop the lens down to some f8-11 you get really impressive sharpness throughout the frame. One aspect I find a little annoying is its weight-not for hand held shooting but when used on tripod vertically- the whole set-up is then very heavy and unbalanced. For this reason I practically never use it on tripod vertically and prefer the lighter 17-40/4 or primes. The 70-200/2,8 has this problem solved by the rotating tripod collar.

Jun 25, 2007
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Sammy Bates
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Registered: Feb 23, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 229
Review Date: Jun 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,064.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent build, very sharp images, fast AF, vivid colors, wonderful saturation, creamy bokeh, smooth zoom
Cons:
None

Like many others, I had to choose between this lens and the 24-105mm f/4L IS USM. In the end I decided that I would have to go with this lens because it "fits" my needs better. I mount it on the Canon 30D w/battery grip and it is simply fits my hand perfectly. I use a Tokina 12-24 f/4.0 for my ultra wide shots and the 70-200mm f/4.0L IS USM for my telephoto needs, so I wasn't concerned with the relatively short long end. In addition, I almost always use a tripod, so I felt that the IS feature on the 24-105mm was more than compensated for by this lens' faster aperture.

I feel that the weight for this lens is very reasonable considering it's a 2.8 lens and built extremely well. I know that a lot of reviewers complain about its weight, but they knew exactly what it weighed before the bought it, so why complain? I love the heft and feel of this glass on my camera and really feel that it is perfect. I was concerned needlessly about whether, or not I would get a good copy. This thing is razor sharp and gives me a beautiful bokeh wide open, so it would work as a portrait lens if I needed it for that, but I don't. Its minimum focus distance is around 15" and maximum magnification is 1:3.5, so I could use it as a macro lens if I needed to, but I don't. I keep this lens mounted 90% of the time and feel that it is ideal as my "walk-around" lens. As I said, I use it on my 30D, but when I upgrade to the 5D (hopefully) next year I believe that it will really start to shine.


Jun 9, 2007
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Santoso
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Registered: Apr 23, 2007
Location: Indonesia
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 21, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: All rounder, sharpness, build, bokeh, contrast
Cons:
None

This is a dream lens for most Canonian because it covers the widely used angle. IMHO every Canon user who shoots event and wedding should have one. It is the perfect companion for your 70-200 f/2.8. If you like to sent back your lens and keep complaining about sharpness, then you should buy prime lens instead.

May 21, 2007
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sumocomputers
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Registered: May 8, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 18, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,150.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Once sent to Canon, very sharp, nice color, and great bokeh.
Cons:
On 1.6X crop, not wide enough at 24mm (38mm) and not long enough on the other end at 70mm (112mm). Canon - can I see an EF 10-135L f/2 IS for $500 please? ;-) Had to be sent to Canon for major work. Caused me to feel that my photography skills were inferior! Well, maybe they still are, but a bum lens doesn't help...

I bought this lens about a year ago along with a 70-200L f/2.8 IS. I am using them with the 30D body.

I was impressed with both, but being fairly new to photography, it has only been in the last 2-3 months that I have really understood what sharp & soft mean, and what front & back focusing mean.

Took this lens and the 70-200 & 10-22 on a recent trip to the Southwest USA. While they all performed well, the 24-70 definitely was soft and had some autofocus issues. The 70-200 was sharp, but again had some autofocus issues. I was able to get some acceptable photos between good luck, manual focusing, and tweaking in Aperture. I learned a hard lesson though. BTW, the 10-22 probably gave me some of the best keeper photos - and it is "Non-L" & "Non-IS" !!! :-)

Sent both of the L lenses back to Canon recently - they both had issues (24-70 had the lens element replaced, the 70-200 had backfocus issues and was adjusted). Now? What a difference! Focus better on both, and both are very sharp.

As sad as it is after spending several thousands of dollars on Canon gear - here is my recommendation:

As soon as you buy your new Canon Lens, send it to Canon for calibration (take a couple of shots for comparison later if you want). There is a very good chance they will find something wrong, and fix it. Then start shooting and measurbating and pixel peeping. That is how bad Canon's QC seems to be. Some even report having to send it back 2 or 3 times before getting the problem resolved. Do it if necessary, especially on these very expensive lenses of the L class. Otherwise you may learn a hard lesson like me. Also don't forget that the body can sometimes be to blame.

Now you know why I gave it a low rating. I rated it on how I got it out of the box - not it's real potential. In that case it would get a 9 overall.


May 18, 2007
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Jia Wang
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Registered: Apr 2, 2005
Location: Singapore
Posts: 120
Review Date: May 17, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: - Beautiful bokeh - Responsive and fast AF - Solid built
Cons:
- Weight - Extending barrel

Finally got my copy of this lens after a 3 years long wait (to save up as well as improve my photography skills to justify this super lens)...

I must say that in today's world of DSLR and 1.3-1.6x crop factor bodies, 24mm is hardly wide enough... But what I was looking for was a zoom to plug the gap between my EF17-40.. f4L and Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 lenses... Been doing without it for many years, mainly because I uses my 50mm f1.4 to fill in the gap...

Was toying with the idea of getting a 24-105mm f4L too, but figured that I would rather have the wider aperture than the stretch of the focal length and IS...

Optics-wise, I'm more than happy with the quality and the bokeh is extremely smooth... Probably due to the circular blade apertures of this lens...

I did a short test-shoot with this lens at a shopping mall and boy this lens rocks!
http://www.pbase.com/jiawang/vivo_2470_test


May 17, 2007
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JohnnyCat
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Registered: May 9, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 14, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good Color
Cons:
Not Sharp out of the Box

My experience with 3 Canon L lenses is that they are not sharp out of the box. All 3 L lenses I have owned had to be sent back to the factory in California for calibration. After 70-200 L 2.8 IS USM was returned it blew me away beyond my expectations. Didn't realize a lense could be so sharp. 24-105 F4 just too slow, not sure I would recommend this lense. I sold it. However, the 24-70 L USM is just right. Especially on a 5D. I'm an amateur but the difference of the L lenses on a 5D is considerable. I'm always shocked at how good some pictures come out on the 5D without always trying. However 20D/24-70 L 2.8 also rates as a good combination; If your considering moving up try this combo, you won't be dissapointed, that is after Canon "adjusts" your lense for a "second time." PJP

May 14, 2007
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Pablo Vicente
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Registered: Apr 24, 2007
Location: Belgium
Posts: 160
Review Date: Apr 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fast and reliable focus, 2.8 @ 3200 ISO leaves the tripod home when needed, good hood for sun and shock protection, so sharp I don't always need the normally obliged unsharp mask, details in pixels, nice constrast
Cons:
expensive price, weight requires steady hands, attracts bystanders

Having used this lens in fashion, street, event and nature photography it is what stays on the camera as standard.Requires steady hands and you won't need to work out your arms a lot when using this with a cam+ grip + speedlite unit.Difference with standard lenses is obvious at 100 per cent.The 28-105 USM II does perfom very well and costs 1/4 the price.What to choose ? Depends on your return-on-investment plans and the need of a fast lens.

I have shot concerts @ 5.6 , but L @ 2.8 really makes a difference.I would not recommend it to a person new to photography because of the high price better invested in prints and studying ( I started with 100 dollar lenses ) , but rather to someone who already knows what he/she is doing and wants to climb up.

Most studio portraits on my site are done with this lens.For extreme close ups I like to use the 700-200 2.8 and the 100 2.8 macro.


greetings,


Pablo

www.PabloVicente.com
www.digitalpixels.net


Apr 29, 2007
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retrofocus
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Registered: Apr 19, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 3794
Review Date: Apr 19, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,154.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Well built lens. Constant max. aperture f2.8 between 24-70mm. Fast autofocus. Excellent optical quality. Very good color reproduction and nearly perfect contrast.
Cons:
None

I bought this lens as addition to my Canon 100-400mm L lens and the Sigma 10-20mm lens. Since I use a D-SLR with a crop factor of 1.6, the efficient focal length of this lens is 38-112mm. It is a fast lens, nicely applicable for some close-up and portrait photographies. The autofocus with a silent USM drive is fast and reliable. The front lens does not move when focusing. It also allows to manually change the focus in the AF mode.
Since I already have a Sigma 10-20mm lens it did not matter to me that this Canon lens provides only a relatively small wide angle range on my Rebel XT.
This lens is heavy, but I prefer better to have an excellent buit quality with metal instead of plastic frames.


Apr 19, 2007
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PhotoproX
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Registered: Apr 6, 2007
Location: Albania
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 15, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,300.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: sharpness, contrast, flare resistance, close focusing
Cons:
not that fast if you´re used to prime lenses, external focusing (covered under the hood though)

Possibly one of the best quality mid-range zooms available today with great IQ and good range from wide to light tele. This one allows both group shots and single portraits (and everything in between) in one package.

The lens is not too heavy and balances well on the 5D. At 70mm its as sharp it gets even wide open and produces pleasing bokeh. The wide end is a little worse, still on a very high level though.

Looks like I found my ideal travel and landscape lens.

Coming from Canons L primes, constant 2.8 aperture is not really fast and even the cheapo 50/1.8 beats it at 50mm. But then, the 50 sucks at every other focal length...


Apr 15, 2007
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emandavi
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Registered: Feb 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 998
Review Date: Apr 4, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,200.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharp 2.8 lens (isn't that why we buy it?). Great as an all around lens, especially on a 1.6 factor camera. With this lens on a 1Ds MII, and a 70-200 2.8 L IS on my 20D, I don't ever have to change lenses.
Cons:
When using Full frame camera, 70mm just isn't enough sometimes, and I hate to be switching lenses in the middle of an event, so I have 2 cameras on me.

Poor price, since Tamron does something comparable for under $400. This lens is beautiful for head and shoulder shots on a 1.6 crop camera. I was able to buy a used 28-75mm lens (Tamron) 4 days after buying this lens, and it beats the Tamron, no contest. But if I was able to buy the Tamron prior to spending money on this lens, I wouldn't be writing this review. The Tamron isn't as sharp at 2.8, and the focus isn't as dependable, but you can get some real winning photos with the Tamron lens if you're not going to blow the prints up larger than 11x14. I'm speaking of shots taken at the 2.8 aperture of course (why else would we spend the money if it wasn't for the 2.8?)?

Apr 4, 2007
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Aryo
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Registered: Nov 13, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 15
Review Date: Mar 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Excellent image quality/build.
Cons:
None.

Honestly, I've been too busy actually using the lens to post a review. For what I shoot, this is an excellent choice for the sharpness and clarity. The focusing is quick and silent. This lens is the workhorse of my setup because it's so versatile. The construction is quite sturdy and with proper care will last for a long time. If you're looking to cover a broad range without spending a lot on numerous lenses, this is a good start (followed by the 70-200mm L [all are good]).


Mar 29, 2007
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kenscott
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Registered: Sep 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 14
Review Date: Mar 21, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,219.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Great range, sharp and fast.
Cons:
heavy

I bought this lens from Calumet photo the week of March 12th 2007 and I have noticed a few things that Canon updated silently. I noticed that the AF switch is different from other versions that I have seen. I also noticed that the Zoom internals are different. The lens used to zoom out slightly after you hit 50mm on the way to 70mm. With my 24-70 it goes from full-out at 24mm to full-in at 70mm. On the older versions you had to get it to 50mm to be as short as possible to pack it away. I feel that the zoom is more dampened in a nice way. I think that they changed the zooming internal workings of the lens. The other versions that I have used have slipped around a little too much. Doing a test VS my canon 50mm 1.4 at 2.8 the prime 50mm is only slightly sharper than this zoom. I really enjoy this lens.

Enjoy,

Ken



Mar 21, 2007
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aeubank
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Registered: Feb 20, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 608
Review Date: Mar 20, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Beautiful bokeh, good light and vignette control. Very sharp. A must-have for a serious photographer. If you whip this baby out, you'd better know how to take pictures.
Cons:
Attracts quite a bit of attention (not that that's a bad thing).


This lens is a must-have for any serious photographer. I've had mine for some time and I love the fact that this lens always delivers. Others have stated that they have received a soft copy, but mine is definitely sharp at all focal lengths.

I chose this lens over the 24-105 f4 mainly because I know and appreciate the value of having that additional stop that this lens allows at f2.8 which is twice the light over the f4 model. Even without IS this lens delivers big results. It's not cheap but you get what you pay for. Build quality is superb and will probably last many years to come. When you have this lens on your camera, people know you mean business. It seems to attract attention everywhere it goes.

Some have complained about the weight of the lens, but it feels just right for me. Overall, you can't go wrong with this lens. Rock solid Canon reliability and quality.


Mar 20, 2007
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Julius
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Registered: Jan 26, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 935
Review Date: Mar 16, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,079.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent built, fast focusing, very sharp at every aperture focal length.
Cons:
Heavy lens with an oversized hood, but the hood is very effectice.

I have seen many different opinions about this lens however mostly positive but apparently some sample variations do exist.
I must be one of the lucky ones since my copy is nothing short of outstanding in every respect on my 5D FF camera. It is very sharp even at the maximum aperture (wide open) with very good contrast and edge to edge sharpness at every marked focal length. I also have the 24-105L IS lens which is an excellent walk around lens but does not have the same edge to edge uniform sharpnes what this lens has. It is very comparable (if not even better) at the center of the field but sharpness falls off slightly towards the edges. Comes very close at f/11.0 but still not the same. So when it comes to serious landscape photography using tripod, this is the lens I can depend on.
To me it equals sharpness and contrast with any fixed focus length lens and the slightly hevier distortion is easily corrected in PS with the PT lens plugin.


Mar 16, 2007
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recordproducti
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Registered: Jul 11, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 217
Review Date: Mar 14, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Crisp, sharp and accurate. Very good colours. A great partner to a FF sensor.
Cons:
Quite heavy makes my 5D feel like I need to get the battery grip.

I bought mine just a week after buying a 16-35L and feel spoiled for choice as both complement each other very well.

On my first family outing with the 24-70L I snapped away trying the lens out at a range of apertures and got home expecting that just a few would be any good. All bar a few were keepers and that was a surprise. I've since used this on a good number of shoots and feel very confident in using it in low light wide open. Wide open it's quite sharp but at around f/4 on my copy I felt it was running close to my 100mm f/2.8 macro.

I had been drawn to the 24-105L IS but as welcome the IS would have been I needed to be able to suck in more light and have a pretty distortion free wide angle for the times that my 16-35L was at home and when flare could be a problem this seems more controlled that the 16-35L but naturally it's not anywhere as wide.

My 50mm f.1.4 is a very good copy and so was expecting that this lens would not match it but I suspect that except for the very low light situations I'll not be using that so much. The 24-70L seems much faster to focus and it's bang on, silent and an excellent performer.

The big worry from reading forums was the apparent QC issues so was almost expecting to have to take it back to get another copy. I need not have worried. Yes, mine may not be as good as some others, I've not been able to compare yet, but using the 100mm macro as a datum it's looking excellent to me.

A big thumbs up from me!




Mar 14, 2007
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Rahul Rangan
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Registered: Jan 7, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 134
Review Date: Feb 27, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, almost silent and FAST AF, Excellent quality, free manual focus
Cons:
Weight of a small child, slightly soft wide open

Excellent lens. I picked it up about two weeks ago (used) and have since shot about 800 images. I never want to put it down! This has quickly become my favorite all-purpose lens. I don't think I've taken it off my camera since I've gotten it (except for cleaning purposes). Highly reccommended.

Feb 27, 2007
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Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
534 904121 Mar 26, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
89% of reviewers $1,192.24
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.69
8.38
9.3
ef_24-70_28u_1_


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