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Canon EF 70-200mm f2.8L USM

Munro 13 45 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2009 12:28PM
I am considering adding a 70 -200 lens to my Canon 50D and was looking for experiences on the above model. I do not take sports shots and so am reluctant to pay the extra money fort the "IS" model, unless that is I am convinced by others that there are other worthwhile benefits.

Any thoughts appreciated.
arhb 14 3.4k 68 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2009 12:56PM
Firstly, I wouldn't associate the IS option with sports, necessarily.
I use the F4 IS version of this lens, and it is superb, producing very good, sharp image quality. I find the IS very handy for all kinds of situations, especially on a walkabout, when you might be in a low-light situation, where you need IS for a low s/speed.
I use a 1.4tc with this lens on some occasions, with almost un-noticeable loss in image quality, so this adds to the versatility of the lens.
The only time I have turned the IS off, is when the lens is tripod mounted, or when shooting very fast moving subjects at high shutter speeds(off tripod), when the IS is of no significant benefit(IMHO).
It would be worth considering the F4L IS as it is a similar price to the F2.8L without IS.
Do you need F2.8 for any particular reason?
Munro 13 45 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2009 1:03PM
I have looked at the F2.8 purely to give me more options in low light. Would the F4 with IS provide the same flexibility as the F2.8 without IS?
Ian_Sweet 15 92 1 England
9 Aug 2009 1:20PM
Save your money and buy the f2.8 IS lens, you will not be dissapointed, I wasnt.

arhb 14 3.4k 68 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2009 1:41PM

Quote:I have looked at the F2.8 purely to give me more options in low light. Would the F4 with IS provide the same flexibility as the F2.8 without IS?

It's not easy to say, as one low-light situation is always different from another.
An example where I would like IS, would be a mushroom shot in the woods/forest, where holding the lens still, would be easier with IS.
On the other hand, for a low light shot of a barn owl, I would favour non IS F2.8, over F4 IS, as I would prefer a higher s/speed.

Bottom line, if you can afford F2.8L IS, get it, but it is significantly heavier.
User_Removed 14 1.5k 1
9 Aug 2009 1:47PM

Quote: Would the F4 with IS provide the same flexibility as the F2.8 without IS?

the answer is no because you are getting double the shutterspeed wide open with the 2.8 non is than with the f4 is. Remember, is only helps prevent blurryness caused by camera shake and does not help when your subject is moving so the lens that has the faster shutterspeed wide open will deal with a moving subject better because it will have a faster shutterspeed to freeze movement. If you are taking photographs of still moving objects in low light you would be cheaper buying a tripod than an is lens. It would be good to know what sort of photos you intend taking and do you need that focal length to take them??? I personally am a portrait photographer and i use the f4 non is version of the lens for portraits becuase i can acheive out of focus background at f4- f5.6 with the long end of the lens. In the event that i am in a low light situation where i cant hand hold the lens without shake i use an 85mm 1.8 prime lens that enables me to acheive a faster shutterspeed. Perhaps you should consider the non is version and a fast prime. james
canonfan46 12 1.1k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2009 3:28PM
as a rank amatuer I have only posted questions on here and never an opinion but theres a first for everything.
I have gone through a succession of lens and recently bought a 70-200 L f4 IS and in my humble opinion its magic, incredible sharpeness and colur compared with any lens I owned.
As regards the technical attributes, I am not qualified to speak but this is the best peice of kit I have bought since starting.
I absolutely love it.
mark_delta 13 1.3k
9 Aug 2009 5:24PM
What sports ?
makes a huge difference....
Fairclough 12 174
9 Aug 2009 11:32PM
I know at least one photographer who flogged his 70-200 2.8 IS after using the new F4 IS version. It's a lot smaller/lighter, has better IS and superior image quality. That it's also quite a lot cheaper is a very strong selling point, too. Worth a good thought.

For the record, I'm not in a rush to trade-in (mainly as I'm inherently lazy) but if I was buying again new I'd have the F4 IS and spend the rest of the money elsewhere.
puffinlady 12 19 Canada
9 Aug 2009 11:51PM
I mainly shoot with my 17-40mm on a 30D but I have the 70-200mm F2.8 IS and love it! F4 vs F2.8? its all about what aper. you want I guess.....I love mine Smile and enjoy having a bit more to play with Smile
colin beeley Plus
18 1.2k 10 England
10 Aug 2009 6:52AM
i have had both the IS & the non , & sold the IS one it was to soft made even worse with the 1.x extender on read here 2.8 IS the 70/200 f4 IS is a great lens read here but it is a bit slow with the 1.4 extender on for sport shots . also it is a lot smaller and lighter so that might be good for you.
lumenessence 11 44 Australia
10 Aug 2009 8:40AM
I currently use the 70-200 f2.8L IS mainly because I shoot a lot of indoor sports and some low light situations. I take some photos during night time rugby league matches and the 2.8 helps A LOT. Even with 2.8 I'm shooting 1600 ISO on the 50D which isn't too bad.

The 70-200 f4L IS is sharper in my opinion, could be a result of the fluorite elements within the lens. It's definitely lighter and cheaper and I know many people who get amazing results with this lens.

However if we're talking about indoor sports or night time sports, 2.8 is a great thing to have. If you shoot mainly portraiture/fashion (with lighting equipment) then the f4L IS perfect. If you are asking is the f2.8 worth it ... then for me it's been more than worth it.
rhody 18 2.8k 2 United Kingdom
10 Aug 2009 9:15AM
The f2.8 IS is superb in low light situations.

I used it last month for a Graduation Ceremony in Portsmouth Guildhall.

f2.8 / 1/250s / ISO 3200 at 200mm - very, very pleased with the results.

I have posted this image in my Portfolio if you want a quick look at the results
colin beeley Plus
18 1.2k 10 England
10 Aug 2009 10:01AM
hi mark have you thought about the canon ef 135 f/2.0 L i have just bought one myself and what a lens & it works with the extenders.
samfurlong 15 2.5k United Kingdom
10 Aug 2009 6:20PM
I used to have the 2.8 non IS and trashed it, bought the 2.8 IS and is brill. Never missed the IS before I had it but now I do find uses for it... I turn it off wenever it's not required as it takes a fraction of a second to kick in and IMO slightly hampers fast focus acquisition of moving objects such as fottball players etc. plus it is not needed for most sports as it only counters camera shake NOT motion blur in the subject.
I have also had a go with the 70-200 f4L IS and found it really really nice, can't tell any difference in sharpness or focussing, except in very very low light where the extra stop brighntess of the 2.8 version aid focussing significantly.
To me it comes down to size / weight and price. If you can afford it and don't mind a bit of extra weight get the 2.8 IS. Also this lens feels lovely on a 1 series body, handles as well as any camera / lens combo I have ever used.
In your case as you don't do sports I'd get the f4 IS version.

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