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Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Lens Review

INTRODUCTION

The 70-200mm focal length has been one of the most versatile and popular zoom ranges available. First introduced in March of 1995 the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM has been one of the go to lenses for sports, portraiture, and journalism across the world. Canon has four 70-200mm lenses in their lineup, two f/2.8s and f/4s with and without IS. As a portrait photographer I find the f/2.8 aperture is a must have over the f/4 versions to completely isolate your subject and stray from any distractions or environmental flaws. Thus is why I sold my 70-200mm f/4L USM earlier this year and purchased this f/2.8 version. Though it lacks image stabilization and the weather sealing that its newer 70-200mm f/2.8L USM IS II brother has, it is around $1,000 cheaper and lighter, making it a much better bang for your buck.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM
SPECIFICATIONS

TypeTelephoto Zoom
Focal Length70-200mm
ApertureMaximum: f/2.8 Minimum: f/22
Diaphragm Blades8
Lens Construction18 elements in 15 groups
Diagonal Angle of View34° – 12°
AutofocusYes
Focus AdjustmentInner focusing system with USM
Front Element RotationNo
Closest Focusing Distance1.5m / 4.9 ft.
Image StabilizationNo
Filter Size77mm
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight3.3″ x 7.6″, 2.9 lbs. / 84.6mm x 193.6mm, 1310g
Warranty1 year

WHAT’S INCLUDED

In the box come not only the lens and warranty papers, but a very nice zippered, padded case. Much better than the soft drawstring lens pouch the f/4 variants of the 70-200s receive. It has two rings on each side in case you want to attach a strap to it as well as having two connected zippers allowing opening and closing to be a breeze. The top of the bag is kept shut by a Velcro tab on the zippered flap. This case is also sold separately for ~$55.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Lens Hood

Not only is the case included, as with all L lenses Canon provides you with the lens hood as well. The f/2.8 versions of the 70-200mm lenses receive a tulip style hood over the classic bayonet hood the f/4 lenses have. Sold separately the ET-83II hood is ~$45. A hood is always a good thing to have on your lens. It helps reduce flaring, increases image contrast, and acts to protect from any accidental smashing into things.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Tripod Collar

Finally, the lens comes with a tripod collar. The f/4 70-200s do not come with one, so if you need to pick one up, they will set you back ~$180 if you get the Canon version.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Tripod Collar

The collar easily rotates and is removable for hand-held shooting purposes. The collar helps balance the weight out a lot when you mount your camera on a tripod. There is less stress on the lens collar mount than there is when the body itself is attached to the tripod.

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM Tripod Collar

The thread for the mount is a standard 1/4″.

INTRODUCTION The 70-200mm focal length has been one of the most versatile and popular zoom ranges available. First introduced in March of 1995 the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM has been one of the go to lenses for sports, portraiture, and journalism across the world. Canon has four 70-200mm lenses in their lineup, two f/2.8s and f/4s with and without IS. As a portrait photographer I find the f/2.8 aperture is a must have over the f/4 versions to completely isolate your subject and stray from any distractions or environmental flaws. Thus is why I sold my 70-200mm f/4L USM…

Review Overview

Build Quality
Optical Quality
Warranty
Price
Availability

The White Whale

The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM is a top quality lens that delivers high IQ, fast accurate autofocus, and creamy bokeh. Although it lacks IS and weather sealing, this lens is a great value compared to its newer weather sealed brother with IS.

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