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Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
353 739018 Mar 26, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
91% of reviewers $3,231.81
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.82
8.19
9.4
ef70-200_28lisu_1_

Specifications:
Incorporating Canonís second generation Image Stabilization technology, this telephoto zoom responds in as little at 0.5 seconds, while providing up to three stops of correction for camera shake. Its AF system has been refined for better response time and tracking speed. And even the new 8-blade circular aperture offers a more pleasing out-of-focus image. Constructed to pro standards, this fast zoom is also highly resistant to dust and moisture, too.


 


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jlhudson
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Registered: Feb 2, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 4
Review Date: Oct 31, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,699.95 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Best IQ I've seen on a zoom lens, Build quality second to none, Weather sealed, etc., etc., etc.
Cons:
Price, but worth every penny.

Can't say enough good things about this lens...

If you are thinking about it just get it. You won't regret it.


Oct 31, 2006
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lakeside
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Registered: Feb 27, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Oct 25, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

Pros: If it was good out of the box I would have given it a 9.
Cons:
Got a bad one.

I'm using this lens on a 20D and in auto focus mode it has performed well. As I become more familiar with this lens I am very pleased with the operation and the results.
However, I have noticed a slight back focus problem recently. Originaly, I thought it was my problem getting used to the features of the lens.
In manual, if zoomed in all the way to get a focus and then zoomed out to frame a shot the focus does not track. While it is annoying to pay this much for a lens and have this problem out of the box, I recognize that it is repairable.
What is most disturbing is that when I called Canon regarding this problem I was told that this is a non-par focal lens and is designed to operate this way. I was told that there was nothing that Canon could do to repair the problem.
Franlky, I thought the answer was B.S. and called a local camera store about it. I was told by them that this is a common problem with this lens. They have sent in quite a few for this issue and when returned the problem is solved. I'll give an update when it comes back.
Clearly this Canon rep was not familiar with the product and I recommend that should you call Canon for answers keep in mind that their people are reading promps from a screen. If it souds like B.S. it probably is.
This situation won't change my mind about Canon products as I have been very happy with them for many years.


Oct 25, 2006
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Type A
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Registered: May 21, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 17
Review Date: Oct 20, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,599.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness, color rendition, bokeh, Image Stabilization, quick AF
Cons:
Cost (but you get what you pay for), weight

This lens just continues to blow me away. I've owned mine for two months now and the more I shoot with it, the better it performs. I'm sure the improvement is just me learning to use it to its best advantage as it was a stellar performer right out of the box.

Previous to buying this lens, I owned the 80-200 2.8L "magic drainpipe", and as good as that lens was, it can't begin to match this ones performance.

The general consensus seems to be that the non IS version is the sharper of the two, but I can't imagine mine being much sharper. It holds its own when I compare it to my 200 2.8L, and that's saying something as my 200 is ouch sharp.

There's something magic about the bokeh of this lens at large apertures. I've been unable to reproduce it with any other lens that I own, including my 200 prime. I would just about be willing to buy it for its bokeh alone, and the color rendition is superb.

The only downside to this lens in my opinion is the weight. It gets a little bit heavy if you're shooting all day with it, but that comes with the territory, and the IQ more than makes up for it. Get a good strap. I have an Op/Tech Pro and it goes a long way toward making the weight a non issue.

All in all, I would say, If you're considering the lens, buy it. If you're torn between this one and the non IS version because of the difference in price, pony up the extra bucks. Six months from now, you won't miss the money and, if you're like me, you'll be extremely happy with your decision.


Oct 20, 2006
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mholdef
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Registered: Sep 25, 2005
Location: France
Posts: 1121
Review Date: Oct 15, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness, contrast, color and bokeh are all great across the zoom range with very good results wide open
Cons:
A bit heavy but not a huge burden

I sold my 135/2L (which was a superb lens) in favour of a bit more versatility and do not regret it.

This is about as good as a zoom can get and the results come close to the better primes.

Mark


Oct 15, 2006
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Stuart Roll
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Registered: Oct 13, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Oct 13, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: White :) very fast and sharp, IS is good when used correctly. Solid as a rock.
Cons:
Price.

Very sharp, is takes a bit of practice to allow servos a fraction af a sec to stabilise, apart from that its my best lens.

Oct 13, 2006
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Nick De Marco
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Registered: Jun 13, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1
Review Date: Oct 9, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Razor sharp. Super fast. Perfect Images. Maybe the best zoom lens in the world.
Cons:
It will burn a hole in your pocket and give you back ache. But that's all the negatives


Is this the best zoom lens in the world? I don't know, but I think it might be.

This lens is the "Daddy" of my collection. I always wanted it but could never afford it and never went to buy it. Then I made the mistake of looking through it on my 350D and it blew me away. I knew I had to have it. And once I did it was one of the reasons I thought I needed to buy a body fit for it, the 5D. So a very expensive purchase indeed, but a wonderful piece of glass.

As someone who likes fast lenses, I love this as it is a high quality telephoto zoom that is f2.8 all the way through and provides almost perfect results, and colour, at any setting. If you are not sure whether to make the plunge and buy this, just do it and save the money on those cheaper lenses that can never match this. A word of warning though: it is heavy. Not too much, but I find my back arches if I carry it around on my camera for more than 2 hours.

For a gallery of photos taken with this lens on my 350D and 5D see http://upload.pbase.com/edit_gallery/nickdemarco/canon_70200mm_f28_l_lens


Oct 9, 2006
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condrup.eu
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Registered: Jul 20, 2006
Location: Denmark
Posts: 38
Review Date: Sep 26, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: When you want the best, you get this one..
Cons:
When you want the best, you just have to pay for it..

Well, ok.. hmm.. yes.. right.. That's how i feel about this lens, it simply knocks you off your feet, period!

It is solid, it is fast and it makes outstanding images, not to mention that the IS is beautiful and works like a charm.

Yes, i know it is expensive and with good reason, i whined too over the price, but trust me, as soon as you hold it in your hands and mount it on your camera body, you simply forget the price Wink

Best lens i have ever owned, number 1 in its class - it is the king!

Now go buy it, you wont regret it, i know i didn't! Smile


Sep 26, 2006
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Rajan Parrikar
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Registered: Sep 9, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 1207
Review Date: Sep 26, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: $1,600.00

Pros: Outstanding optical performance, superb build quality, versatile zoom and aperture range, IS.
Cons:
None.

This lens has rightly earned its cachet in the pantheon of zooms, with class written all over it. It helps deliver optimal pictures straight out of the camera. It is a heavy lens with an impressive visual profile. All in all, it represents top-notch Canon engineering.

Sep 26, 2006
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Rajan Parrikar
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Registered: Sep 9, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 1207
Review Date: Sep 25, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,600.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: This is an exceptional zoom exhibiting superior optical performance and a superb build quality. It is wholly deserving of its cachet in the pantheon of zoom lenses, with its magical capture of detail and colour. I have tried it both handheld and on the tripod, with and without IS. I have had it, along with my 5D, for a couple of weeks now and it hasn't come off since the time it was first mated to the body. I shall have to soon wean it off to test my other lenses.
Cons:
None. It is a little on the heavy side. Does one expect anything less with a maximum aperture of 2.8 and IS?



Sep 25, 2006
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Ed Lee
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Registered: Jun 11, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 410
Review Date: Sep 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,600.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, Fast, Steady, and easy to use and focus
Cons:
None

I ended up buying the subject lens after reading the reviews on this board and I must say I was quite impressed. Some say it's a bit heavy but being able to bench press 400lbs once upon a time in the not so far past, lead me to believe I can deal with it during the course of an event.

I would highly recommend this lens to anyone who is or aspiring to be a professional photographer. The clarity is just awesome.

Ed


Sep 14, 2006
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pixelda
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Registered: Sep 4, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 4, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, good IS - great at low shutter speeds - even with 2x extender, internal zoom components
Cons:
Well OK, Weight and Cost

After the disappointment of returning a dust sucking 17-55 (replacement OK so far), I've spent many occasions peering in the 70-200! I needen't have worried, so far this lens is a gem.

Shots are sharp, even handheld with the 2x extender in use, which, on a 30D max's out at 200 x 2 x 1.6 = 640mm equiv!

As I take landscape rather than action, not tried the IS mode 2 (panning) yet

With zoom action internal to the lens, polarising filter can be easily adjusted - except with the hood in place of course.

Build quality is good (Please put this amount of detail into the 17-55), and you get a lot of glass for the money!

I can also share filters with the 17-55 as they have the same 77mm diameter.


Sep 4, 2006
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perspective
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Registered: Oct 10, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 589
Review Date: Sep 1, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,699.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp IQ and quality of image
Cons:
None at all

Sometimes a design is so well done and everything works out just right in every respect. That described the 70-200 f/2.8L IS.

This is the first lens I bought when I got back into photography. There's only one thing I do not like about this lens, it's friggin costly.

My best photos come from this lens. I've got more keepers from this piece of optical perfection and any other lens at any other time. It doesn't matter which body I put it on: Rebel XT, 20D, 5D or 1DS, it's happy and makes every body give its best results.

I love the two IS stages it has and the IS is so quiet on mine that sometimes I get scared and think it's broken. If I had to get rid of all lenses but one, this is the one I'd keep to the last.

People always stare at me when I use this lens though. It stands out in a crowd. I don't think you'd want to walk around Disneyland with it either because you'll end up knocking little kids unconcious with it as it swings from your hip. It would also give you a pinched nerve in your neck after hours of lugging it around.

I use this lens for landscape and portrait work. I have never felt the need for the 85 f/1.2L because the portraits I take with this lens are perfect (assuming I do my part correctly of course). This lens is also forgiving. I took a series of portraits once out in the field in light just too dim even for this lens, and the AWB wasn't calculating the Kelvin temp right so I got dim, orange pictures. I was able to correct those pictures to results far better than I had reason to hope for because this lens has such incredible resolving power that all the data was there to be extracted and corrected. The fact that I was using a 1 series camera didn't hurt either, but without a good lens even a 1 series body won't give you good pictures. With this lens I feel that even if I screw something up I'm going to get a result I can work with regardless.

The price is heart-stopping though, even used these lenses got for $1500. Someone on Ebay got $700 for a broken NON-IS version of this lens. I mean the guy must have dropped it into a wood chipper and still got nearly half of retail for it!


Sep 1, 2006
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KenpoPhoto
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Registered: Apr 5, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 4
Review Date: Aug 31, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,600.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast, Sharp
Cons:
None

I refer to this lens as "The Tank" because it definately feels like it. I don't mind the weight, you get used to it after a little while.

The build quality is amazing. The manual focusing and focal length rings are very smooth.

I've left this lens at 2.8 and primarily use the center focus point on my camera. It's dead accurate. One Shot Autofocus is stupid fast.

I was walking around the Renaissance Festival last weekend with this lens and got some amazing shots of the jousting and sword fighting. I was standing in the back row and was able to get all of the action shots. I was shooting in AI Servo mode and I didn't miss a beat.

Mode 2 IS was especially useful as I was tracking the knight riding his horse during the joust. Lances shattering on armour stopped dead in the air is an amazing sight. Bokeh is also very pleasing.

Bought this lens from B&H using the PSAUG search. I thought about buying this lens a while back but hesitated because of the price. Now that I have it, I wish someone had slapped some sense into me then, because I don't know how I would do without it now.

If you're even considering it, stop considering it, just buy it, you won't be sorry and you'll never look back!


Aug 31, 2006
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iaindr
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Registered: Jul 21, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 7
Review Date: Aug 26, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, easily handled, IS, L Lens
Cons:
None

For a versatile lens that can be used by the amateur or professional this is it. It maybe heavy it maybe white but it is excellent

Aug 26, 2006
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NinaS
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Registered: Nov 13, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1208
Review Date: Aug 22, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,629.99

Pros: IS, fixed f/2.8, and just about everything else
Cons:
really can't state any

I bought this lens for two reasons, the f/2.8 and the IS

being a mature woman, I was finding I couldn't hold my 28-200mm or my 70-300mm still at full zoom, always had to drag out the tripod.

I primarily shoot senior portraits, headshots & models, throw in a few fashion shows & dance competitions to fill my time ... this lens is a Godsend ... it has opened so many new avenues in my regular work, plus I've discovered a whole new world of photography.

I purchased the Kenko's trio of extension tubes, and now am taking headshots of bugs ... macro is sooo amazing, I'm hooked

my wildlife photography has stepped up to the next level, can capture a landing eagle on a tree tack sharp ... amazing

the weight is nothing ... it was my biggest fear, since I've had two rotator cup surgeries on my right shoulder, I was afraid of the weight ... 6 weeks of daily use ... no shoulder pain at all

the shallow DOF that can be accomplished has given a whole new look to my people photography, I also stopped at a little league softball game one day, mid-day sun, AMAZING AMAZING pictures, stopped the ball in flight, and had perfect clarity in the ball (the players were sharp too)

this lens has limited possibilities, the only place I can't really use it is in tight quarters if I want full body shots, but otherwise, it is my primary lens now

HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU GET THIS ONE, YOU WON'T BE SORRY


Aug 22, 2006
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jimdavies
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Registered: Apr 5, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1557
Review Date: Aug 22, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

Pros: SHARP SHARP SHARP All the way throughout the zoom range. Amazing wide open! Solidly built, amazing IQ, superfast AF and quiet. IS works superbly well.
Cons:

A few months on from my first use of this lens I thought I'd provide a short update.

This lens is a fantastic lens worth every penny of the £1000 I paid for it. It's sharp and fast and works well for almost every type of photography you care to throw at it. The IS is truely awesome allowing super sharp hand held shots at crazy shutter speeds like 1/15th sec and even lower (even at 200mm)!!

It does become a little heavy after a whole day shooting a wedding or sports event but really it's not too bad and I'm a pretty scrawny chap really!

The user below may have either a bad lens or is totally unrealistic about the usefullness of this lens. Perhaps he should send it back for checking as his review flys in the face of almost every other review posted! Sure the 300mm and 400mm f2.8 lenses may be sharper and faster but they are not in the same league as this lens and to me are not comparable.

If you want a fast super sharp zoom that is tremendously adaptable and has that all important IS, this lens is the lens to buy.

The 70-200 f2.8L non-IS may be also very marginally sharper but it's certainly not as useful a lens.

Almost every sports shooter owns one of these lenses and you don't hear many bad reports.


Aug 22, 2006
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†††



Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
353 739018 Mar 26, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
91% of reviewers $3,231.81
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.82
8.19
9.4
ef70-200_28lisu_1_


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