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  Reviews by: rd4tile  

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Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM

Review Date: Aug 10, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,200.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Build, AF, IS, IQ - the entire package.
OK weight/price I guess

Prime level image quality at f2.8 and up at all zoom ranges.

Works with both 1.4X and 2X at supertele performance levels.

Lightning fast AF (fastest I've ever seen)

IS is not only latest generation but fast and quiet as well.

Better hood design.

Other then cost this lens has no real flaws so I guess you get what you pay for (although in my case it replaced 3 other lenses so I ended up with a lighter bag and more $ in the wallet.)

Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

Review Date: Aug 20, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,039.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Size, build, IS, constant f4, crazy sharp
Not f2.8 (duh)

This lens should become known as the sharpest zoom Canon will ever make (if it's not already) and it's as good at f4 as stopped down. AF is fast and IS is the best so far. It takes a 1.4X as well as the superteles from an IQ standpoint. It's hard to beat given it's size and the new high ISO capability of the digic 3 bodies. I've owned two 70-200 f4's and an f2.8 and this lens smokes those in overall color/contrast/IQ.

Tamron 18-250mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di II LD Aspherical (IF) AF

Review Date: Mar 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $499.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Range, size, price
A little soft on the long end, efs only, no IS

After having a good experience with Tamron's 24-135 I thought I'd see if this could be the ultimate walk around lens for my XTi. What I found was very good IQ especially stopped down. 18mm is very good with minimal distortion and the lens stays sharp to around 180mm. 250mm is soft even stopped down although that may due somewhat to my handholding skills.

AF is fast and accurate in reasonably good light, much better the the lower end Sigmas I've tried on Canon bodies.

I love it's compact size and weight, it's just perfect for a do everything lens on the XTi. Build is solid and zoom is reasonably smooth. I tried the Tamron 28-300 last year and I think this lens is head and shoulders above it.

Canon TS-E 45mm f/2.8

Review Date: Feb 9, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, excellent build, easy to manual focus, auto aperture.
Tilt and shift orientation difficult to change.

Even without the tilt/shift feature this lens would be a great prime. It's as sharp as any lens I've owned. Excellent and versatile focal length on a FF body. I found this lens was not that difficult to learn and use and has a high fun factor. It's too bad Canon couldn't have made it easier to reorientate the shift and tilt to the same axis (and back).

Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

Review Date: Jan 11, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,250.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Range, Size, IS, Build
not f2.8, distortion @ 24mm

If you like butter on your bread you'll love this lens on the 5D. Every bit as sharp as the 24-70 or the Tamron 28-75 (including the corners). And this sharpness starts at f4. AF is fast and accurate on my 5D even in low light and the IS is lightning fast. This may be the ultimate street / landscape zoom for handheld work.

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

Review Date: Apr 11, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,549.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Range, Sharpness, relatively compact at 100mm, IS, L build quality, good quality with 1.4X TC.
IS not as effective as newer versions, a slow lens (f4 would be heaven but there would go the size)

I just love the range of this lens and it's relative size when not extended. The IS is effective although not as fast as newer versions like that on the 300 f2.8. It shines in good light at higher shutter speeds but requires some long lens technique when one starts using speeds under a 400th (at least for me). My copy is capable of excellent images even wide open but it's not automatic like it was with the 300 f2.8. I'll use it mostly for airshows, auto racing, wakeboard and occasional wildlife shooting. I got used to the pump zoom very quickly and haven't noticed any more dust issues then normal.

Canon Extender EF 2x II

Review Date: Dec 2, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $280.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Build and image quality with Canon Super Telephotos. Excellent benefit for what it costs.
Only works with some lenses.

Rather than dwell on the fact that a 2X extender just can't match up to the equivalent larger telephoto image quality wise I'd like to congradulate Canon on making a product that really works great and has a great cost to benefit ratio. When you mate this extender to one of the fast Canon super teles (in my case the 300 f2.8L IS) you get a good usable image. It's pretty obvious Canon did their homework when they designed these. If your dead serious about image quality then of course go for the length you need! (and then watch yourself put these extenders on at times anyway!). If one can afford a 4K to 8K super telephoto than I think the 1.4X and 2X are worthy investments to go along with it. If you look at all the equipment lists of those who own the fast Canon L's you'll pretty much see these extenders as part of their bag.

Canon EF-S 17-85mm f4-5.6 IS USM

Review Date: Nov 26, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $540.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: RANGE, RANGE, RANGE! IS, image quality, build, AF speed
Price, ef-s bodies only, not an f2.8 lens

This is simply the best street zoom for 1.6X crop bodies IMHO. It has excellent image quality across it's range, 90-95% of the image quality of the 17-40L at 17mm (mostly due to slightly less sharpness at the corners). Through the rest of the zoom range I found it to be a bit sharper than the Sigma 18-50 f2.8 and equal to my Tamron 28-75 (of which I have an extremely sharp copy). My 17-85 is also better across the board than the 18-55 kit lens and the Sigma 18-125. The AF is fast with the 20D in spite of it not being an f2.8 lens, speed was comparable to the 17-40L. For ultimate image quality I'll stick to the primes, but this lens is great for everything else. Solid, heavy build. I think this lens will be a great bargain when it's price hits the $450-$475 range in the meantime if you want this range I don't think there's a substitute out there so I can live with the cost.

Canon EOS 20D

Review Date: Oct 10, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,500.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: PRICE, AF speed, 8 mp, 5 fps, jpeg buffer, build, size, built in flash works well, high ISO noise, battery size/life, shutter is quieter than 1D.
No ISO in VF, 1.6X crop, needs bigger RAW buffer

I had just listed my 1D and was ready to buy a 1D mkII when Canon announced this model. I wanted more resolution and didn't want to give up the 1 series speed/features. (my first digital was a 10D)

I lived with the size/bulk of the 1D but there were times when it stayed in the bag because of that. What I really wanted was a 1d mkII in a 10D size package. (a baby MK II).

So I'm very happy with this camera. I got about 90% of what I wanted and saved 3 grand to boot!

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM

Review Date: Aug 9, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,299.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Small, black, lightweight, well built with fast AF and great IS.
Image soft at 300mm f5.6, expensive.

I have done a lot of shooting with this lens and have been amazed at times with it's image quality and disappointed as well. However in spite of that this is a lens you will use. I leave it on my 1D most of the time because it's so easy to just grab and shoot with. The IS and quick AF make up for it's lack of faster apertures and it's just wonderful for times when you want a light and unobtrusive setup.

The image quality is usually within +90% of my 70-200 f2.8L unprocessed at comparable focal lengths when shot in good outdoor lighting. Images do get soft wide open at 300mm but sharpen up well in my experience. I've yet to see any "strange bokeh" and have only had a few situations where the "dreamy" effect others have talked about has been pronounced. The DO will work with the Tamron/Kenko 1.4X and 2X TC's but the image quality takes a big hit. The 70-200 f2.8L with 2X TC shows better contrast/sharpness than the DO with the 1.4X.