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Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
166 324529 Sep 3, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $609.56
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.77
9.71
9.8
1ef200mmf_28_1_1_

Specifications:
Telephoto lens boasting high image quality and carrying ease. With two UD-glass elements and rear focusing to correct aberrations, image delineation is extremely sharp. Background blur is also natural-looking, as was simulated by Canon. The lens comes with a dedicated, detachable hood.


 


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photorebel
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Registered: Apr 29, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 634
Review Date: Oct 14, 2007 Recommend? | Price paid: $580.00

Pros: Light, balanced...fast AF, razor sharp images..relatively inexpensive for an "L" lens.
Cons:
What is there not to like, except you can't zoom it. Need a zoom, buy the 70-200.

After a year of use ...a definite 10!

I wasn't entirely happy with my 70-200 f/2.8L (non IS) which may have been user error, or maybe I didn't have a sharp copy. For whatever reason I sold it, and bought the 200 f/2.8L. After a few games, I knew I'd done the right thing.
This lens has become a workhorse for me. I used it at highschool track meets. And although I have a 300, I used it twice this year at highschool football games.
This is just a sharp, fast focusing lens. A real workhorse. I don't even use a monopod with this lens (attached to Mark IIn) and I still get razor sharp images.
It did take some adjustment, coming from a zoom, but the results I got are worth it. I wouldn't sell this lens for anything right now. It's my most used Canon lens!
Highly recommended!


Oct 14, 2007
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Joe Wineglass
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Registered: Oct 3, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 30
Review Date: Oct 8, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: I put this lens on my 30D and forgot to take it off. One of Canons best.
Cons:
None.



Oct 8, 2007
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Fa.bian
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Registered: May 23, 2007
Location: Germany
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 23, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $740.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Bokeh, Price, Fast focusing, Excellent aperture (f/2.8), L-Lens
Cons:
No holder for a tripod (You'll have to buy it extra)

It's my first L-Lens, and I have to admit that this is really my best purchase since I'm photographing ! Especially if you photographing people on the streets, this lens is perfect ! The bokeh is very creamy and charming. I own the MK II version.

Sep 23, 2007
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TONY MARTIN
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Registered: Jul 14, 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 8, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Bokeh,Sharp images, colour cast, build quality, f2.8, everything
Cons:
None what so ever

Wow 3 days after buying and i am still saying wow when i see the results, brought used on ebay have to say this is a fantastic lens for so many different subjects, i keep finding new ways to photograph and never want to put my camera down.
One down side i now think i should sell my zooms to get all primes.


Aug 8, 2007
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Tony Rogers
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Registered: Jul 9, 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 299
Review Date: Jul 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Light weight (much lighter than the 70-200 f2.8L), sharp, clear, fast auto-focus
Cons:
it's not the 200mm f1.8L :(

I would love to own a 200mm f1.8L. If Canon ever start to make that lens again, I will be very interested in buying one.

In the meantime, I have one of these. It is much lighter (good strong build quality, but light), and it works very well. I have used it on a 5D and a 1D Mark III (where ISO 6400 makes up for f2.8!) - on the Mark III it is a 260mm-equivalent.

This is the cheapest or second-cheapest L series lens. That is not because it's bad, it's because it is a simple, effective design that doesn't cost a lot to make.

This is much easier to carry all day than the 70-200 f2.8L IS.

I have heard arguments about whether this lens is as good as the 135 f2L; I don't think it is, quite, but that's a high benchmark. This is a fine lens, and very useful.


Jul 9, 2007
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breenj
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Registered: Sep 24, 2005
Location: Marshall Islands
Posts: 318
Review Date: Jun 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Image quality, bokeh, AF speed, size, takes converters well
Cons:
? No tripod collar included, maybe? I've never missed it.

I don't really use this all that much since I often go for the convenience of the 70-200 f/4L IS or the 100-400. But every time I do use it, I end up happy with the shots.
This lens is tack sharp. With a 1.4x converter, I couldn't notice any IQ loss. With the 2x it's noticeable (and AF slows down a lot), but still very sharp.
I use this with a 30D.


Jun 29, 2007
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DigitalDreamer
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Registered: Apr 20, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 151
Review Date: Jun 25, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $659.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: This is simple, everything!
Cons:
None, no i am not going to say that it does not zoom like others have complained about. ITS A PRIME!

I have just sold my 135MM after using this lens. My major disappointment with the 135MM F2 was the CA that that lens produces. I shot both lenses under identical situations and the 135 showed it's ugly CA while the 200MM F2.8 had none!
This by far has to be the best value lens that Canon produces.
As soon as you understand your focal range you will know were you have to be at every event. Trust me when i say this lens with never leave my bag.


Jun 25, 2007
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Bobby Yarner
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Registered: May 1, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 407
Review Date: May 24, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $610.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Extremely sharp wide open. Subdued color. Size. Build
Cons:
None for what you indeed are buying, a high class prime lens

This lens is one of the best deals around from Canon. It's very sharp and a true performer. I'd say that if you're considering it instead of a zoom (70-200), then you should be asking yourself how critical it is to you to be able stand in one place and change focal lengths. Would you use this lens for photojournalism for instance? Probably not, but who's to say so; if you can produce the work with just a prime Ė get it.

May 24, 2007
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flitcroft
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Registered: Feb 24, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 11, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $640.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Ultra-sharp, very fast focus (USM with full-time manual focus), creamy bokeh, L build quality, low price, low weight, relatively small size, F2.8!!, not white (so you won't get mugged in Europe with it; does have the red stripe), includes lens hood and bag
Cons:
Fixed focal length, No tripod collar included, it's too bad that on a 1.6x crop it's 320mm since that's not a length one uses every day

Pros: Ultra-sharp, very fast focus (USM with full-time manual focus), creamy bokeh, L build quality, low price, low weight, relatively small size, F2.8!!, not white (so you won't get mugged in Europe with it; does have the red stripe), includes lens hood and bag

Cons: Fixed focal length, No tripod collar included, it's too bad that on a 1.6x crop it's 320mm since that's not a length one uses every day

Review:
This is lens is extremely sharp, often sharper than your own eyes. Not "sharp as an L" or "very sharp" but one of the sharpest lenses ever made for the 35mm format. Using this lens is revelatory and will quickly get your mind churning, thinking that if all L lenses are this good that you can somehow justify spending $10,000 on lenses. But in reality, there's only two other lenses sharper than this for the Canon mount in any length, price or format: Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II and Canon EF 135mm f/2L. In the same focal length and price range you're looking at the Canon 70-200mm F4 L but the 200mm "Primepipe" completely destroys it for image quality (it's not even close -- the 70-200mm F4 looks like a toy when you compare the two on a 20D). The superb Canon EF 70-200mm 2.8L is close but this lens edges it out for clarity and at half the price the 200mm F2.8L Mk II is a steal any way you look at it.

Using this lenses is heavenly. It's compact and light but also so fast at focusing that it feels like the camera starts reading your mind. On my 20D, this lens is often about 5x as fast as my eye can change focus. My most used lens, the 50mm F1.4, feels very fast but compared to this the 200mm F2.8L II is in a completely different league for speed. This actually does make a difference in your photography because when you're at 200mm (or 320mm with the 20D) shooting AI focus or continuous focus is common and the 200mm holds onto a subject far better than your eyes and brain can in many situations. I could say more here but my guess is that my camera body is the limiting factor on holding perfect focus a lot of the time.

Being prime has its advantages. First, you get a more compact, lighter lens, that costs a lot less. Plus, you get a black lens. If you're not a professional definitely try to consider what a 1.5ft long white lens looks like when you walk around with it. This lens is no 2 inch long 50mm, but it at least isn't bright white. You'll get stares when you have this lens around your neck but you won't get people falling over themselves to find out what you're framing. If you shoot any candids or shoot in public places like zoos the discreet look of this lens can be an asset.

Cons:
By far, the biggest cons are by design. First, being 200mm the lens is not one that you will use every day. 200mm, and especially 320mm on 1.6x crop cameras, is not a very useful length in the vast majority of situations, but if you want a superb telephoto this may be the one for you. If you hold your arm at full extension this lens is about 4 thumbnails of your field of view. That can be tough; it's very close to your subject. Second, this is a prime lens and it does not zoom which further limits its uses. Those that buy this lens will probably a) value absolute sharpness over utility b) treasure the constraint that forces one to approach situations creatively c) don't think that zoom is worth $1,000 and a slight loss in image quality (that would be be me).

Summary:
This is a superb lens and one of the sharpest 35mm format lenses you can buy. Sure, you don't have zoom but the lens is perfect. Plus, at $640 it is a ridiculous bargain on a 1.6x crop camera (Canon 20D, 30D, Rebel, XT, XTi) for an ultra-sharp 320mm F2.8 lens. This lens get the highest possible recommendation from me.


May 11, 2007
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gaalpoel
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Registered: Aug 25, 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 5, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast, great contrast, lightweight.
Cons:
None

Highly recommended lens. It's fast, sharp and extremely portable. Just the right lens for landscape, birds and portraits. The bokeh is creamy, almost like silk. Sharpness is great corner to corner. Handling is easy due to it's light weight.

This lens makes you happy every time you use it, it's my first L-class lens and I'm simply addicted to it. I have the mkI, wich I prefer because of the build-in lenshood (although it's a bit small sometimes).

I would recommend it to anyone looking for a fast prime-lens at the tele-side of photography.


May 5, 2007
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twistedlim
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Registered: Oct 20, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 3127
Review Date: Apr 24, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, wide open. Fast focus, lightweight, a joy to use.
Cons:
None

This lightweight telephoto is near the top as far as I am concerned. I have the MK1 with the built in hood that does the job just fine 90% of the time. I can get some ghosting on occasions if I am not careful. I had an 80-200 2.8 and found myself shootin at 200 most of the time so I made the switch. I shoot mostly sports with this lens and almost always wide open. Very sharp at 2.8 and rarely misfocuses.

Apr 24, 2007
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drbenjamin
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Registered: Apr 11, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 46
Review Date: Mar 17, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $530.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Beautiful images, small black and discreet.
Cons:
you will need good technique to use this handheld on a crop camera.

This lens makes me want to go out and take pictures. It is hands down my favorite lens, and has motivated me to save up for other Canon L primes.

Mar 17, 2007
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James pf Chow
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Registered: Jan 19, 2007
Location: Malaysia
Posts: 1
Review Date: Feb 18, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Ultra Fast AF, high sharpness and contrast, very good color rendition. Relative light in weight for an L Lens with excellent build quality, and it is BLACK.
Cons:
None really for what it is designed for. No IS but no issue.

Read lots of FM review on this marvellous prime ...... I was considering between EF70-200mm f/4.0L IS USM and EF200mm f/2.8L II USM but decided to go for 200mm due to it's f/2.8, size/weight and BLACK, and never regreted buying it when an excellent copy was available in the market recently.

Sharp, sharp and sharp - this is a sharp lens with excellent bokeh and the AF is ultra fast. I seriously doubt even the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS differs much at all; maybe possibly due to it's IS function. 200mm f/2.8L is very consistent over a wide range of shotting distance and remain crystal clear optically even with no IS feature provided. No complaint on zoom capability as it is designed as a prime. The hood looks a bit big but does serve the lens well. No flare was noticeable with this lens with the said hood.

I strongly recommend this lens for what it is; a long, fast, consistent with good design ergonomy, and provide crystal clear images with excellent colour rendition and bokeh. Very user freindly lens.

This is quite remarkable lens for the price. Although not as versatile as 70-200 zoomers but optically at par if not more superior at 200mm.

It certainly gives sharp images with nice colours and good bokeh.

Some first few photos taken with my new EF200mm f/2.8L:

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/178/393812206_dfc24b7f72_o.jpg
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/127/393812248_a718e8c87c_o.jpg
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/186/393812060_c9527206a0_o.jpg
http://farm1.static.flickr.com/138/393812028_22a60b1a69_o.jpg


Feb 18, 2007
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tmr_wa
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Registered: Sep 7, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 1023
Review Date: Feb 10, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros:
Cons:

As others have noted, Canon has a reputation for producing high-quality telephoto lenses and the 200/2.8L (mk II) doesnít disappoint. The 200/2.8L is very sharp, even wide open. On my 10D, the lens produces images with wonderful color, great contrast, and creamy bokeh; if you have the room, this makes for an outstanding portrait lens. I typically use the lens for outdoor portraits, outdoor sports where I have access to the sidelines, and landscape applications where I frequently like to isolate patterns. The lens works splendidly for outdoor action, even under cloudy or twilight conditions.

Here are a few of my favorites:

http://www.pbase.com/tmr_wa/image/62948634.jpg

http://www.pbase.com/tmr_wa/image/62949632.jpg

I very much like this lens on a 1.6x DSLR when I need some extra reach. The purchase of something like a 300/2.8 doesnít make financial sense for me, nor would I want to carry one of the longer telephotos for any significant time or distance. The 200/2.8 on my 10D makes for a fine compromise. I consistently find that the 200/2.8 is on the camera when some of my best photographs are printed. That said, I do find myself using the 135/2 a bit more frequently than the 200/2.8, but if I was using a full-frame DSLR, I think the 200/2.8 would see even more use. In short, the 200/2.8 is capable of producing stunning, professional-grade images.

The 200/2.8 is built very solidly and the AF snaps into focus with little hesitation. While this isnít a small lens, especially with the hood attached, the lens is fairly compact relative to 70-200/2.8 telephoto zooms. Also, the price of the 200/2.8 is much less than the Canon 70-200/2.8 zooms. I probably will eventually pick up the optional tripod mount for the 200, primarily because this makes changes in horizontal to vertical (and vice versa) orientation easier.

I have owned a 70-200/4L and while this zoom is capable of producing very sharp images, it had several shortcomings for my uses. First, the zoom was a bit too long, even unattached to the camera, to fit in my favorite small camera bag. Second, I typically found myself at the long end of the zoom and it was at 200mm that I often wished for the ability to open up to f/2.8 as this better allows action-stopping shutter speeds. Finally, I found the white color of the zoom to be a bit too conspicuous for my taste. Therefore, I sold the 70-200/4 and purchased the 200/2.8. I havenít regretted this decision for a second.

If you need a 200mm lens and don't want to carry or pay for a 70-200 zoom, this L lens won't disappoint.


Feb 10, 2007
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LMCasey
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Registered: Dec 2, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 114
Review Date: Jan 27, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $635.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp from corner to corner even at f2.8. Light, excellent build quality, great focus on my crop bodies. Quite a bargain
Cons:
None

This lens is flawless optically as far as I can see. I am using it on crop bodies only so far. Shoot it wide open and look at the great corner to corner performance. Sharp, nice bokeh. Unlike other users, I have no problem with the hood. This lens is much lighter than the 70-200 2.8 zooms, so if you don't need a zoom, this might just be perfect for you.

This lens is quite a bargain.



Jan 27, 2007
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Mike Pearson
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Registered: Jan 26, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 237
Review Date: Jan 26, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $660.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, Light, Fast, Overall Image Quality
Cons:
Not a zoom

I have had this lens for a few years along with a 35mm f2 and a 85mm f1.8 as my basic beginner set. The 200mm f2.8 has always been my favorite. It has become the standard by which I measure everything else, and most everything else falls short (though I must admit I haven't tried the 135 mm f2.0 which I understand is outstanding).

The worst I can say about this lens is that it is not a zoom. But, the truth is I have become a better, smarter, photographer by having to think about and visualize my shots.


Jan 26, 2007
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†††



Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
166 324529 Sep 3, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $609.56
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.77
9.71
9.8
1ef200mmf_28_1_1_


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