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Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
174 354225 Nov 23, 2016
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $614.16
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.72
9.65
9.7
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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Jake Holt
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Registered: Oct 7, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Oct 15, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $600.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Image quality, size, build quality, price, AF speed
Cons:
none

This lens is a raging bargain - one of the best price/performance ratios of Canon's entire lens lineup. It's light yet built well, and it's razor sharp. As my non-photographically inclined girlfriend said after viewing some photos taken with this lens, "it's sharper than real life!" I.S. would be nice, but then it would be heavy and much more expensive, so as it is, it's pretty much perfect. Now my non-L primes seem oh so pedestrian by comparison.

Oct 15, 2006
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Baytoven
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Registered: May 27, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 25
Review Date: Oct 8, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Size, Sharpness and Contrast, Fast AF, Picture Quality, Price
Cons:
None

Excellent prime especially if one shoots on the long end. Picture quality is outstanding. You won't regret owning this gem.

Oct 8, 2006
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penghai
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Registered: May 21, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 940
Review Date: Aug 29, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: $600.00

 
Pros: Very fast AF, great color anbd contrast, great build, reliable, and work well with 1.4TC and extension tubes. And it's black.
Cons:
None.

Just add to my previous comments.

With a tripod colloar and extension tubes, this lens combo is excellent for close up of flowers and butterflies. I found I prefer this combo over my Canon 100mm macro and Canon 135mm. And it's less than half the weight of a 70-200 f2.8 IS!

This is a real performer!


Aug 29, 2006
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dwill23
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Registered: May 8, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 17, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $619.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Size, weight, price, f2.8, sharp at f2.8!! fast auto focus!!! wow!
Cons:
tripod collar isn't included.

Don't have $1700 to drop on the 70-200 f2.8 IS? That's a good thing!! Your wallet is going to save you from making a big mistake by not letting you buy the 70-200.

This lens has 9 peices of glass.
The 70-200 has 32 peices of glass. GEE i wonder which is sharper?? You don't have to be a wizz kid to know this lens with only 39.1% as much glass as the 70-200 IS is a WORLD sharper, and focuses WAAAY faster!!

I sold my 70-200 IS because it wasn't sharp at F2.8 at all. I owned the NON-IS and IS version, and hated both!

I shoot sports, so i can't set up my shot, and they are running around as fast as they can, so i need my gear to focus very very fast, and work well at F2.8 for night NCAA football games.

This lens does just that. Do no be fooled into think the 70-200 is better, because by all means it is not!!

There is a famous saying "if your photos aren't turning out well, get closer". meaning don't zoom out, zoom in! In this case you can't zoom out, and for me that's rarely a problem!

I shoot with a 300mm + 1.4x teleconverter = 420mm, and now this lens, and it works out perfect for me!

I could not be happier with this lens over the 70-200. This is what i really wanted in the 1st place, only half the price!! Sharp, and useable at F2.8! yay!!

And it weights less than half as much as the 70-200!

Dig deep and you'll see that the 70-200 blows, and the fixed 200mm ROCKS!

Buy this lens, save money, get better photos, be happy!




Aug 17, 2006
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bogatyr
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Registered: Aug 10, 2003
Location: Norway
Posts: 646
Review Date: Aug 7, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $700.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Ultra high sharpness and contrast, a very good color rendition.
Cons:
No water sealing. Apart from that, none.

In my opinion, the Canon EF 200mm 2.8 L II is an underestimated lens.

In spite of its lower price, it is more capable than either of the 70-200 zooms. Not by much, but there is a subtle difference at 2.8. The versatility of zooms is much touted, but a photographer who knows how to position him- or herself in relation to his or her subjects is most often well served by a high-grade prime lens. I do a lot of sports photography for my running club, and only in the relatively few situations when I cannot move to position myself towards my subjects do I miss a zoom.

I have found that this lens is uniformly sharp from 2.8, and that there is very little improvement if you stop down. This means that the lens is eminently hand holdable - no need for IS, which is in my view overestimated. Lens speed is far more important than IS, and this lens has what it takes to perform in available light situations.

My results indicate that the 200/2.8 L II to be a bit sharper than the 135/2.0 L at similar apertures, while the 135 has a tad better contrast. On balance I would say they are equal, and I am happy to own both of them. The 200 truly shines when used for sports and other action photography as well as for long-range portraits outdoors, whereas the 135 is brilliant indoors. It also takes a teleconverter well, when combined with a 1.4x Extender it loses little quality - which is also the case with the 135 2.0 and the 300 2.8.

Alone, this lens is ultra high grade, and the 200/2.8 L II deserves to be appreciated by photographers who seek the best. A last argument in favor of this lens is of course that a high-grade prime is less expensive than a high-grade zoom. High quality tools are an investment worth making, but it is always pleasant when one can get the best for a good price.


Aug 7, 2006
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my58vw
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Registered: Jun 3, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 174
Review Date: Jul 17, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $699.99 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Lightweight 200mm f/2.8L lens, Very sharp, quite sharp wide open, Good bokeh, As sharp (if not more) than the 70-200 f/2.8L IS at comparable focal lengths, Discrete compared to while L glass... gets you in where white does not.
Cons:
No IS, meaning shutter speeds need to be a bit higher, more noise. L lens should come with Ring mount, extra 90 dollars.

I bought this lens as a replacement (with a 135 f/2.0L, the 200 f/2.8L sister lens) for my 70-200 f/2.8L IS I was using on my 20D, and not my 1Ds. The 70-200 f/2.8L IS was the sharpest lens I have ever owned, but I can say at comparable focal lengths both the 135 f/2.0L and 200 f/2.0L are actually as sharp, and maybe sharper without the weight associated with the 70-200. This is quite an acomplishment, as the 70-200 is probably the sharpest canon zoom lens ever made.

The 200 f/2.8L, like the 70-200 f/2.8L non IS is great over about 1/200, but 1/125 or so is obtainable with good long lens technique. On a full frame body (1Ds mark 1) this lens is a totally different animal. It is long but in actuality in many cases not long enough. It was not enough for example to reach from the middle deck for reasonale frame fill at most stadiums. With the 200 f/2.8L canon's good teleconverters can make this a 280 f/4.0L or a 400 f/5.6L with small IQ drops. In my opinion the lack of IS is not such an issue then with a 1.3 or 1.6x crop camera, the later being 320mm vs 200mm, in that case a near 1/300 shutter speed is needed for sharp shots.

The main thing I love about this lens is the weight and discreatness. I can take it to a baseball game and no one questions the lens... I call it the white syndrome, I was turned down more times with the 70-200 2.8L IS.

Overall this is a great lens for a FF or crop camera, each its own purposes anyway... if primes are for you, then go for it... the 200 f/2.8 and 135 f/2.0 are together about the price of the 70-200 2.8L IS, although missing the IS the low light performance is better.


Jul 17, 2006
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my58vw
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Registered: Jun 3, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 174
Review Date: Jul 17, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $699.99 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Lightweight 200mm f/2.8L lens, Very sharp, quite sharp wide open, Good bokeh, As sharp (if not more) than the 70-200 f/2.8L IS at comparable focal lengths, Discrete compared to while L glass... gets you in where white does not.
Cons:
No IS, meaning shutter speeds need to be a bit higher, more noise. L lens should come with Ring mount, extra 90 dollars.

I bought this lens as a replacement (with a 135 f/2.0L, the 200 f/2.8L sister lens) for my 70-200 f/2.8L IS I was using on my 20D, and not my 1Ds. The 70-200 f/2.8L IS was the sharpest lens I have ever owned, but I can say at comparable focal lengths both the 135 f/2.0L and 200 f/2.0L are actually as sharp, and maybe sharper without the weight associated with the 70-200. This is quite an acomplishment, as the 70-200 is probably the sharpest canon zoom lens ever made.

The 200 f/2.8L, like the 70-200 f/2.8L non IS is great over about 1/200, but 1/125 or so is obtainable with good long lens technique. On a full frame body (1Ds mark 1) this lens is a totally different animal. It is long but in actuality in many cases not long enough. It was not enough for example to reach from the middle deck for reasonale frame fill at most stadiums. With the 200 f/2.8L canon's good teleconverters can make this a 280 f/4.0L or a 400 f/5.6L with small IQ drops. In my opinion the lack of IS is not such an issue then with a 1.3 or 1.6x crop camera, the later being 320mm vs 200mm, in that case a near 1/300 shutter speed is needed for sharp shots.

The main thing I love about this lens is the weight and discreatness. I can take it to a baseball game and no one questions the lens... I call it the white syndrome, I was turned down more times with the 70-200 2.8L IS.

Overall this is a great lens for a FF or crop camera, each its own purposes anyway... if primes are for you, then go for it... the 200 f/2.8 and 135 f/2.0 are together about the price of the 70-200 2.8L IS, although missing the IS the low light performance is better.


Jul 17, 2006
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mirages
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Registered: Apr 3, 2006
Location: N/A
Posts: 299
Review Date: Jun 29, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: Lightning fast focus; very accurate.
Cons:
None discerned.

Well, this is my second post concerning this lens - not sure where the first disappeared to, but at least my rating stuck!

This lens has met or exceeded all my expectations thus far.
Not nearly as bulky as the 70-200 IS I have yet to write a review about, and lightning quick and accurate.

I can well imagine that on many day hikes this 200mm prime lens, a 24L (or 35L) wide angle, and a 24-105L zoom may well do the all job with the 1.4 Canon extender. I have a belt pack with two cases large enough for the 300L IS and 400L prime (also yet to be reviewed), and another case set that will fit the 200mm and 24-105 zoom perfectly. To round this out I have the 100mm macro ordered now before the rebate deadline, so I am just about set (and have a ton of uphill gradient on the learning curve to do) and totally equipped for hiking and photography with one lens attached to the camera, and two in cases.

Thus far this is my fastest focusing Canon L; and is just a joy to work with. Given the fact that many times, especially in the nature photography, the long end is mainly used; this lens just makes good common sense. And the price - well, it's not cheap, but its a real gem for what it does and compared to many other Canon L primes and comparatively is a bargain.

If you have been contemplating this lens, and already have this range somewhat covered, you might still want to consider it. I know I thought a while before ordering it, but now am so happy that I did due to the flexiblility, color, and deadly accuracy this lens offers. If you are short on ready cash, this lens might come later. But, if you experience anything like what I have with this lens, once bought, it will remain.


Jun 29, 2006
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mirages
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Registered: Apr 3, 2006
Location: N/A
Posts: 299
Review Date: Jun 26, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Lightning fast autofocus; faster and more accurate than any other L prime I tested.
Cons:
We all love IS (it doesn't have it).

Well, this is one FINE lens. I have to admit that I was a bit apprehensive of ordering this, but I am sure glad I did now!

Light enough with good balance with a battery pack to hand hold steady. The autofocus is blazingly fast, and by all appearance in my first month or so with it, the focus is spot on as well.

I know its been said before about other Canon lenses; especially certain L's, but this piece of pipe is well worth the cost. Anyone who is hesitating because of no IS, don't any more. I have to believe as well from everything I have read and heard that this is one of the most consitstent QA L lenses Canon makes.

I have some other L lenses to rate that I have recently and not so recently acquired, but felt compelled to comment on this one a bit out of order. Also, I am not yet fully in tune with my 70-200 IS and a WA prime, so those will have to wait their turn.

If you have been on the fence, even if you have a zoom; the mobility and dexterity of this lens is well worth the relatively modest L entry fee. A lifetime keeper, for sure!


Jun 26, 2006
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Ray Paterson
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Registered: Feb 14, 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 23
Review Date: Jun 19, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: colour, contrast, bokeh f2.8 razor sharp, build quality,price.
Cons:
none

this lens is the best lens I have in my bag. Any lenses retired out of bag for other lenses that may seem more attrractive at the time will not include this one,it's a gem and a real keeper.

Jun 19, 2006
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jcmedeiros
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Registered: Jun 30, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 802
Review Date: Jun 17, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Light, sharp, great color
Cons:
None

This lens in the kid brother of the fabled EF 135 f/2L. It's light and razor sharp with great colors. I don't know what there is to complain about with this lens. You can't go wrong buying this one.

Jun 17, 2006
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Thomaspin
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Registered: Dec 21, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 65
Review Date: Jun 9, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $675.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Optics, build.
Cons:
Detachable lens hood.
Jun 9, 2006
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rossmehan
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Registered: Apr 9, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 3, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $550.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, great focusing, good contrast, inexpensive, light, compact
Cons:
None significant

Bought mine used, but no regrets--nice glass. I'd heard a lot of good things about it, but it exceeded my expectations. I use a lot of zoom lenses and going to a fixed focal shows the excellent quality of prime glass. Granted this lens is a little long for portraits, but for my event work fills a nice niche--

Hands down a great lens---


Jun 3, 2006
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odo benus
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Registered: Dec 30, 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 67
Review Date: May 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good resolution; illumination falloff and overall performance already acceptable at full aperture.
Cons:
Some lateral color; suboptimal contrast.

The lens is sharp enough and there is little to complain. Still I must subtract one point for the small amount of residual lateral color and one point for the moderate contrast.

May 14, 2006
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timmyb
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Registered: May 12, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 76
Review Date: May 7, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Colour,contrast,sharpness from 2.8 upwards,build quality,lightweight and black,accurate fast focussing,takes a TC well.The built in hood of the mark I is an advantage for me.
Cons:
Not really a negative but IS would be nice.

I posted a review for the 100 f/2 a few months ago and rated it a 10 but it's not up to the standards of the 200 2.8.I guess it's all relative.This lens now forms the benchmark and I doubt anything I can afford will ever surpass it.If I could rate it 11 I would.

May 7, 2006
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snowboard9
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Registered: Apr 30, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 30, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $630.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp, Fast AF and surprisingly compact. Comes with a hood
Cons:
Really disappointed that it does not come with a tripod/monopod ring. It's an optional $80 or so bucks.

I bought this len instead of the 70-200L IS for two reason - (1) I almost always go on the long end in this range and (2) the price and compactness is much much better than the 70-200L IS.

The one thing I was concerned about was the lack of IS. Well, it turns out I never needed it for my shooting style and I am surprised just how well a monopod works to stabilize. This is one of my favorite portrait and sports lens. I have taken great portraits, razor sharpand handheld.

I am surprised so many here purchased this lens under $500. Great buy. if you are considering the 70-200mm L IS, I guess the only advice is to really look at whether you need that zoom range and you really go long from the get go. That's an $800 decision but clearly the IS is a nice to have.


Apr 30, 2006
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Canon EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
174 354225 Nov 23, 2016
Recommended By Average Price
95% of reviewers $614.16
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.72
9.65
9.7
1ef200mmf_28_1_1_


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