The New Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II

Aug 29, 2010   //   by Richard   //   Photography  //  Comments Off on The New Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II

I am excited…I have just ordered Canon’s new 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II lens.  I imagine those that know me are saying…WHAT…a zoom??  You see, for years all I would shoot was primes (also known as fixed focal length lens).  Don’t get me wrong, I love the convenience of the zooms, but until now, they just didn’t have the same sharpness that the primes gave.  And to say I am a stickler for sharp photos is, well… a rather large understatement.  Primes also have the benefit of being light and because they can be really fast (i.e. where the lens “wide open” is at f/2.8 or larger), they are excellent for low light shooting:

Cayman National Orchestra

Photo was taken on 9 May 2009 at a concert by the Cayman National Orchestra and the Cayman National Choir in low light with a Canon 5D Mark II and 200mm f/2.8L prime lens with no flash

I admit that the main trade-off with using primes is that you have to carry a number of lenses to compared to just one zoom lens.  By way of example, to cover approximately the same range, you can carry a 70-200mm zoom lens while I would have to carry my 85mm f/1.2L II, 135mm f/2.0L and 200mm f/2.8L II. A really great article on primes verses zooms can be found here:  So, when Canon announced the new 70-200mm I started researching the lens, reading all the reviews I could get my hands on (for all those that provide reviews…Thank you, I find them extremely helpful).

What can I say, I love equipment (an no, there is no such thing as too much equipment).  However, I will not buy equipment for the sake of having it.  For me to acquire it, it must bring something to the table that I don’t have and allow me to focus on my photography.   So when I found the 70-200mm MTF chart and considered what the reviewers were stating about the new 70-200mm giving the 135mm and 200mm (two of Canon’s sharpest lens) a run for their money, I started seriously thinking about the lens.   This past week I broke down and placed the order for the 70-200mm.  Time will tell, but I don’t see the zoom replacing my primes, but supplementing them.  Much in the same way that I noticed Jasmine Star shot a wedding this past Friday (27 August 2010) on creativeLive’s online Wedding Photography Course ( ).  Essentially, she used primes for the majority of the shots and pulled out the 70-200mm for the actual wedding service.  I saw that and said, yeah, that’s what I had in mind 🙂

I am looking forward to adding the lens to my equipment bag and will post some photos once it arrives.

What are your thoughts on primes vs zooms?  Have you tried Canon’s new 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II?  Let me know what you think.

Thanks for stopping by.

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