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Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
380 819852 Sep 24, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
93% of reviewers $593.78
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.64
9.36
9.5
ef70_200_4_1_

Specifications:
High-performance, L-series telephoto zoom lens combining light weight and compactness with an f/4 maximum aperture. Inner focusing and the ring USM enable quick and quiet autofocusing. Also, a circular polarizing filter can be attached and used without difficulty because the front lens element does not rotate during focusing. The tripod collar (sold separately) is the same one used with the EF 300mm f/4L USM.


 


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Maliketh
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Registered: Nov 6, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 67
Review Date: Sep 21, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good build, amazing image quality, very good zoom range, light weight, looks good, extremely affordable
Cons:
f4, but that's what makes it so light, odd 67mm filter size (should be 77mm)

First used this lens on my 350d and took it along with a 17-40 f4L across Europe. The lightness of them both was much welcomed and there was absolutely no sacrifice in image quality.

I have since purchased a 5d and I have to say that the resolving power of this lens is more than a match for the larger sensor and resolution of the 5d.

I strongly recommend you try this lens. It really is amazing.


Sep 21, 2006
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routerguy666
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Registered: Aug 16, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 21, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $600.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price, build quality, optics.
Cons:
No tripod collar.

This is Canon's low priced attempt to hook you on L lenses and it will most likely work. Built like a tank, colors and contrast that are perfect, very fast autofocus. Nothing to complain about, you paid for L and you got it.

The problem with this lense is it doesn't come with everything you need to get the best use out of it. This is a long lense. No, it's not an 800mm, but it is long enough where it absolutely requires a tripod collar to achieve any degree of stability when mounted on your camera. The collar will run you another $160 new, so budget for purchasing it up front. I wasted time trying to convince myself I would only use the lense in bright daylight or that my handheld technique would be adequate, etc. Nonsense, you will need the collar and Canon is pretty lame for not including it to begin with.

Other than that, the lense itself is a winner.


Sep 21, 2006
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Glen_A
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Registered: Jul 29, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 49
Review Date: Sep 15, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, images show plenty of contrast, excellent image color, light weight, small size, reasonably priced, great build quality,minimal image degradation with a 1.4 x teleconverter
Cons:
None

This is my first L lens and I have had it about 6 weeks now. I can only echo all of the positive statements about this lens. I have an excellent Tamron 28-75 F2.8 and while it is sharp, it doesn't produce the colors and contrast that this lens does. In my mind, that is one of the main things you are paying for when you buy an L lens. Using it with a Canon 1.4x teleconverter does little degrade the image. In fact, I have to check my exif data on some shots to be able to tell which ones I used the converter on and which ones I didn't. I give this lens a 10 for what it is. I can't penalise it for not being an F2.8 or faster, or not having IS. You know what this lens is when you buy it. I also can't penalise it for not having a tripod ring since in my opinion it just doesn't it. I use it on my 300D with teleconverter on a monopod and tripod with no problems. If your tripod droops when you put a camera and this lens on it then you need a better tripod head, not a tripod ring. Best thing is I paid $475 for it used and I know if my needs should change and I should want to sell it for a faster 2.8 version, I can get all of my money back.

Sep 15, 2006
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Greg Beggs
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Registered: Sep 11, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 4
Review Date: Sep 11, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $584.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Lightweight, shots have color way beyond expectations.
Cons:
Tripod ring, unnecessary, but too expensive.

Besides being the cheapest of L lenses, this is the most portable high-def zoom glass to hit the market. Okay to get used, built like a tank.

Sep 11, 2006
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wchen
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Registered: Aug 6, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Sep 9, 2006 Recommend? no | Price paid: $560.00 | Rating: 1 

 
Pros: Light weight comparing with f 2.8; good optics; good color rendition.
Cons:
Consistant back-focus on 20D; white color to be conspicuous;

I bought this lens + 20d and 17-40mm for my trip to Hawaii last year. As I came back home checking out the photos, I found almost 75% of photos taken by 70-200mm f4 are out of focus to some degree, while almost all photos taken by 17-40mm are nice and sharp. After reading some posts at dpreview, I figured the 70-200m f4 often back-focus on 20d. I sent the lens and body back to Canon New Jersey factory to calibrate. And It came back unchanged. I was totally frustrated with Canon's servise. I bought a Canon 70-300mm IS f4-5.6 lately, it performs way over my expectation. Focus is alway dead on, at 200mm f5 it generates super sharp images. So if you are making decision between the 70-200 f4 and 70-300 IS, I'd say go with the black one.

Sep 9, 2006
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FlyRN
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Registered: Sep 13, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 226
Review Date: Sep 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, contrasty, colorful, built like a tank
Cons:
Umm, hmm, some folks don't like the white but it doesn't bother me

Wow, what a lens. I traded a 70-300 IS towards this mainly for the better build and was totally blown away. It's by far the most colorful, contrasty lens I've ever used. Very sharp at all focal lengths, good wide open, incredible bokeh, nothing I can complain about. I've used it outdoors and indoors with a studio strobe set-up for portraits and was amazed. Made me trade my 17-85 towards the 17-40.

Sep 8, 2006
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marc1
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Registered: Jan 29, 2006
Location: N/A
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $585.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent optics (Super Sharp), Build Quality, Light Weight & Price
Cons:
Only F4 & no image stabilization

This is a great SHARP lens. A Fine lens to keep mounted when hiking & filming wildlife & sports. The 1.4x teleconverter is a excellent match with minimal degradation of sharpness. Weight is surprisingly light. The weight savings & smaller size is a joy compared to my 300mmL f4 IS. The lack of image stabilization requires a careful hand, monopod, or tripod in lower light. A fine match for the Rebel 350xt, 20D & up..

Excellent Product!!


Sep 8, 2006
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sorcerer
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Registered: Aug 4, 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 7, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: best value "L" Lens; high quality, solid feel; professional grade build and optical qualities; light (705g); very sharp, even @4.0, incredible sharp @5.6; focuses very fast, very quietly and very accurately
Cons:
Large ugly hood; draws much attention as any of the white L glasses; gateway drug to L-addiction

I spent a very long time on deciding which Telephoto lens would be for me. In the list were the
EF 70-300 4-5,6 IS
EF 100-300
EF 70-200 4.0 L
EF 70-200 2.8 L IS
Sigma 70-200 2.8

After extensive study on reviews (thanks to FM and others) and some tests in my local Canon shop I came to the conclusion that the 70-200 4.0 L would be the right lens for me. I actually liked the 2.8 L IS much more, but it would have meant saving more money and thus buying the lens 4 month later.
Until now I do not regret the decision. Especially because of the light weight and size of the 4.0 compared to the 2.8 what makes it much more handholdable (in good to medium light conditions that is.). However in most situations 4.0 is enough with a Digital Camera. On all other situation I have to rely on my tripod.

In the future I will probably invest in a 2.8 but until then the 4.0 serves me well and the reselling value is nearly that of the new lens.

All other lenses from the list were dropped due to unsatisfactory IQ.

I mainly use this lens for Wildlife and Zoo photography. And I love it.


Sep 7, 2006
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bollywood1970
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Registered: Jun 29, 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 26, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: $799.00

 
Pros: It is a very fast lens and sharp pictures. Bright day shots are amazing!. The lens shows a very nice background blurr in wide open aperature.The build quilty is just superb! I also like the fact it stays f4 (when set at F4) through the whole zooming range. This ensures no light has been lost at maximum zoom. This lens can take stunning pics in long thirty 30" exposure as well.
Cons:
The F4 may not be great in lower light conditions if the lens is handheld ,if it had F2.8 it would make this lens that much better especially indoors or at late evening.

Now that I have used the 70-200 F/4 L lens for three months I can say I definately tested extensively in different situations. It was tested in outdoor,fast action, sunset and stage performnce. And this camera did very well. I recommend using a tripod in low light or dark room.This camera none the less can take stellar pics indoors too!! Outdoors in bright light with a beautiful blue sky is where the camera seems to perform at it's absolute best. I have taken many pics here to illustrate the various conditions this lens has encountered.

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=209718266&size=o

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=190470269&context=set-72057594083884168&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=195951893&context=set-72157594208481955&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=195952379&context=set-72157594208481955&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=192405915&context=set-72057594083849010&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=190470283&context=set-72057594083884168&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=185344660&context=set-72057594135547978&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=185345445&context=set-72057594135547978&size=l

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=193784043&context=set-72057594083850728&size=l


Aug 26, 2006
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schoelink
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Registered: Dec 29, 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 24, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: L-Glass sharpness and contrast, Solid built, Price!
Cons:
A rather big hood...



Aug 24, 2006
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ShadowWalker
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Registered: Jun 20, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 2029
Review Date: Aug 22, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: $575.00

 
Pros: Price, build quality, sharp contrasty images, weight
Cons:

This was my first L lens. Every time I use it I'm reminded what an incredible piece of engineering it really is. Lightweight, incredible image quality, perfect design and build. I love this lens.

No negatives at all.

The only improvement I can imagine woud be a closer minimum focus distance. Well, that and IS ... but those aren't negatives, just little things that would improve this already incredible lens.


Aug 22, 2006
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Ramunas
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Registered: May 23, 2006
Location: Lithuania
Posts: 52
Review Date: Aug 21, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Finally I have 70-200.
I spent about 2 hours in a store trying different Sigma 70-200f/2.8 lenses. I do not know if this is normal, but all Sigma lenses I have tried returned different results. The overal result was not bad but just to feel the difference I tried EF 70-200 f/4L USM.
I realy wanted f2.8 but when I compared test results, decision was made almost immediately.

I have not tried the Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8 IS as I was afraid that I could not prevent myself from buy it and would spend more money that I wanted.

Hope I will not miss 2.8 a lot.

P.S. The price is comparably high, but the lens is bought in EU where lens prices are far higher.


Aug 21, 2006
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jasonotto
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Registered: Jul 12, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 21, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: Fast & quiet focusing, Sharp, Sharp, Sharp, Lightweight.
Cons:
F4

I was immediately impressed with the quality of images this lens produced. This lens also makes great portrait pictures, great for outdoor shots.

Once you've had an "L" Lense you won't be going back.




Aug 21, 2006
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jasonotto
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Registered: Jul 12, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 20, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: build, AF speed, amazing color and sharpness, surprisingly lightweight. The quality of the images are amazing.
Cons:
Only an F4!

The 70-200 f/4 is my first piece of "L" glass and I have been impressed thus far with its performance.

It preforms beautifully as long as the lighting is good.


Aug 20, 2006
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escfreak
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Registered: Apr 7, 2006
Location: Germany
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 19, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $700.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Outrageous telezoom. fantastis colours, SHARP
Cons:
No tripod-collar

Excellent performance on my EOS 30D! Wish it would come with a tripod-collar. No need to spend money on 70-200 2,8L IS

Aug 19, 2006
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bladerunner168
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Registered: Aug 17, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 18, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Superfast AF, sharp, good price for a L, portable, build quality
Cons:
Given the pricing, not a lot! Has a MEGA UGLY lens hood!

This is widely regarded as the best value L lens. Really sharp wide and long, built to last, portable enough for travel. Yes I would like to see it with IS but that would surely come with weight and cost penalties.

Aug 18, 2006
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Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
380 819852 Sep 24, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
93% of reviewers $593.78
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.64
9.36
9.5
ef70_200_4_1_


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