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  Reviews by: John Abbey  

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Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM

ef50mmf_14usm_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $315.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: The lens is very lightweight and fast. It is also fairly cheap compared to most other lenses.
Cons:
The lens is soft at 1.4. From 2.0 up it is very sharp (sharper than my 24-70 L).

For $325 US dollars you won't find a better lens. It is very light and takes great images. My 50mm 1.4 is sharper than my 24-70 L lens and the colors look the same to me. This lens is great for shooting without flash, but wide open I find this lens to be soft and lacking contrast. Still very usable though. From 2.8 on it is the sharpest lens I own. It is a great lens and built much better than the 50 1.8. Save you money and buy this lens you won't regret it.


Here are some available light pictures I have taken:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/animals.html


 
Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM

ef400mmf_56_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: The lens gives very sharp images and is lightweight for a 400mm lens.
Cons:
5.6 may be too slow for some people, lack of IS.

I sold this lens to finance the Canon EF 100-400mm L lens, but wish I still had it. I sold the 400 5.6 because I needed the image stabilizer and the versatility of the zoom. If you like to use a tripod or have very steady arms, the 400mm prime is a great lens that produces outstanding images. The 400mm 5.6 prime is quite a bit sharper than my new 100-400 zoom lens. The lens is also not very heavy and has a very nice built in lens hood.

Here are some moon pictures I shot with it:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/9-2-06.html


 
Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM

ef300mmf_4_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very sharp even wide open. Excellent build quality. IS is very useful at 300mm.
Cons:
The IS unit in this lens is noisy.

Even though I sold this lens to buy a 100-400m L, I really miss this lens. The only reason I sold it is because I found the 300mm range limiting. I found it to be sharp even wide open and it produced fantastic colors. It is also not very heavy and the built in lens hood is very nice. I would strongly recommend this lens if you need 300mm. The 100-400mm L lens is also very nice but not quite as sharp as this prime. The IS unit on this lens is also very noisy (no big deal though).

Here is a moon picture I shot with this lens:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/9-30-06.html


 
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM

ef_100_28_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $450.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: This lens is very sharp and produces nice colors. It is also a good focal length on a 20D for macro work. Decent build.
Cons:
The build could be better. Focusing is slow (but should be expected as it is a macro lens).

This lens is a very good value and it produces great results. I find this lens to be very sharp even wide open at 2.8. The lens is built well, but could be better. I guess I am just used to L lenses. For the price it is built very well and is one of my favorite lenses to use.

If you want to see some examples I have shot with this lens visit my site:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/macro_photography.html


 
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ef_24-70_28u_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: The lens is very well made and produces sharp images stopped down. Makes a pretty good portrait lens on a 1.6x body.
Cons:
My copy is soft and not very sharp at 2.8. The focal range is also a little odd on a 1.6 crop camera like the 20D.

Overall I am happy with lens. However, I find my copy is not very sharp when shooting wide open at 2.8. It is very sharp when stopped down to around f/5.6. It is a good general purpose lens for a 1.6x crop camera, but it is not very wide. The lens is also heavy on a 20D but it does not bother me as it is made well. The zoom and focus rings are very smooth and seem to be made well. I am just kind of dissapointed that it is not very sharp at 2.8.

 
Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM

ef70_200_28_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very sharp even wide open at 2.8. The lens is built very well and feels like it will last forever. Good range
Cons:
Price, but you get what you pay for. It would be nice if it had weather sealing.

I have used a few L lenses and this is my favorite so far. My copy is sharp at 2.8 and is outstanding at f/4. The color it produces is also very pleasing. At 70mm it is more sharp wide open than my 24-70 L lens and has better color and contrast. The lens is kind of heavy but made extremely well. The lens is also sharper than my Canon EF 100-400mm L. I am very happy with this fantastic lens.

I have some examples on my website:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/page_34.html

Most of the pictures on this page were taken with the 70-200.


 
Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM

ef100_400l_1_
Review Date: Jan 6, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,400.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Pretty decent sharpness and zoom range make this a great lens. IS helps a lot.
Cons:
A little soft at 400mm at 5.6. Weight.

I purchased this lens because I wanted more reach than my Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8 L could provide. Although it is not as sharp as my 70-200, it is pretty close especially when stopped down a bit. I had the Canon EF 400mm F/5.6L but sold it to finance this lens. It is not as sharp as the prime but much more useful to me. The large zoom range and image stabilizer is what made me buy it. A lot of people complain about the push/pull zoom, but I actually like it as it is much faster. I am very happy with this lens. You can see some examples at:

http://www.johnsfilm.com/html/zoo__1-5-07_.html