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Markins Q-Ball M10

1817
Review Date: Feb 6, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Tightens extremely quickly and loosens just as easily, but only when I want it to. Built solid as a rock.
Cons:
Everybody says it--the pano lock. It does not bother me because I do not sling my tripod/ballhead/camera/70-200 f/2.8 IS over my back to walk with it, but I thought I would just confirm that it will move if you put enough force on it--like anything.

Perfect ballhead. I could not ask for more.

 
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ef_24-70_28u_1_
Review Date: Nov 25, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,089.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp at f/2.8 (not mind-boggling sharp), fast focus, effective zoom range, built like a tank.
Cons:
Reputation for copy-to-copy QC issues

I love this lens! Got mine brand new for $1089 and free shipping from an extremely reputable dealer.

I read about weight being a factor, but having the 70-200 f/2.8L IS and a gripped 40D as my walk-around setup, the 24-70 f/2.8L is not nearly as bad as I expected. True, it isn't a light piece of glass, but I definitely like the balance the lens has with the gripped 40D. I don't find it uncomfortably heavy, either.

The lens performs very well even on a higher-demanding 40D. The pictures are crisp and the DOF at f/2.8 produces very nice bokeh.

If the major factor preventing you from purchasing this lens is copy-to-copy quality, just take a deep breath and order the lens. The QC issues are dramatized and people expect way too much from crop-sensor cameras.