which 70-200 lens

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by shane_o, Dec 12, 2009.

  1. as much as I want the canon 70-200 2.8 IS it is just out of the budget.
    Any other thoughts on good lenses?
    I was thinking either the sigma, Tamron or the Tokina 85-200
     
  2. If you can't afford the 2.8 version, why not get the 4.0 instead? I would stay away from 3rd party lenses - the quality of the 70-200 f/4.0 IS is legendary.
     
  3. Or, the even better Canon 70-200/4 L. You also have the Canon 70-200/2.8 L. Both of these do not have IS but how often are you taking pictures of non-moving subjects in very lowlight?
    Of course the real bargain if you can live without zoom is the Canon 200mm f2.8 L prime.
     
  4. 3rd party equipment can be hit or miss. recommend (canon's) 70-200 f4 (IS or non-IS) or the canon 200 2.8
     
  5. I also suggest a non IS version or even a non IS used Canon over 3rd party. I have the 2.8 Non IS and its exceptional. IS is great but its not useful all the time and if you shoot anything moving at all its almost useless.
     
  6. "As much as I want the canon 70-200 2.8 IS it is just out of the budget.
    Any other thoughts on good lenses?"

    Get the non IS version, it's the best 70-200 on the market. IS is NOT a "must have" by any means.
     
  7. Hi
    My first post to this forum. I am likewise considering the purchase of the Canon 70-200mm. The f/2.8 has me captivated. The two main disadvantages are the weight and the cost.
    I appreciate the comments by John Crowe and Ken Papai. However I cannot find a side by side review of the two. Main reason for purchase is for a general purpose mid telephoto zoom that can be used for portrait (f/2.8 for DoF/selective focus), sports (mainly where I am fairly close to the action) and travel (inc. candid portraits). I prefer a zoom to a prime to avoid changing lenses on holiday as most of the places we tend to go are kinda hot and dusty and I like to keep the lens on the camera.
    Long shot...has anyone experience of both? Does IS make such a difference. If it doesn't, then is seems like a large premium to pay for an extra function that makes the lens more vulnerable to fail.
    Thanks in advance.
    David
     
  8. Just do a search on here, there are many threads comparing all the 70-200's.
     
  9. They are all good. Pick the one you can afford and the one that you can carry comfortably. Do you need 2.8? Can you tote 3+ pounds? If you are a professional earning your living with this lens get the 2.8 IS version. I notice that recently Art Wolf is carrying the 4.0 IS version on his travels. I like mine a lot. Good luck
     
  10. 70-200 f2.8L, or 70-200 f4L or 70-200 f4L IS. Toss a coin.
    I have the 2.8L love it and would likely purchase this version again. My son has the f4 but prefers his because it is lighter and a bit smaller.
    70-200 f4 L IS if your unwilling to use a tripod. This may be your best choice since you mentioned candid portraits which sounds like you will do a lot of hand holding.
    Can't go wrong with any of them. The photos you get will depend on your technique, not any difference in lens quality.
    As for sports (high school cross country and track) a monopod has proven helpful to me, especially with vertical pictures in keeping the focus point where I want it. Sure I can get shutter speed high enough to stop movement, but focusing has been better with a monopod.
     
  11. IS is most useful when handholding longer lenses to shoot still or slow moving subjects. For these applications, I'd definitely recommend the 70-200/4 IS L. Furthermore, the f/4 IS is reportedly the sharpest of the four EF 70-200's.
     
  12. Thanks everyone.
    I have looked around the photo.net site and the digital-picture.com sites. I think that it is going to be the f2.8 with the IS. The reviews seem to imply this is very effective. The sports will be high-school, of my son and daughter (that's spooky you guessed that Kerry!) .
    I am really grateful to all that have taken the time to respond.
    [Ken and Tommy: I will take the time to do the search first next time! Thanks for being tolerant.]
    Thanks again,
    David
     
  13. I use my 70-200 f2.8 IS quite a lot. If I had the choice of the 2.8 non IS or the f4 with IS I would take the f4 with IS almost every time. Those who don't feel the need for IS simply do not push themselves hard enough. It is not about non moving subjects in the dark, it is about subject anticipation, there are stopping points/peaks in almost all movements and action. Both 70-200 IS versions have modes 1 and 2, if you haven't tried panning shots with mode 2 then you have missed out, it is very good.
    I am a complete IS convert, as soon as the 24-70 f2.8 IS comes out I will upgrade. Why? So that shots like this work better. I did get a sharp version of this image too but with IS the couple of seconds that I had this framing could have been used better. Why not just bump up the iso? This image is worthy of poster sized printing and the quality that demands, however good 400 or 800 or 1600 are they are not as good as 200.
    00VEmZ-200065684.jpg
     
  14. "Those who don't feel the need for IS simply do not push themselves hard enough. "
    I have no idea what that is supposed to mean -- maybe aimed at beginners? Sounds like it. I understand WELL the pros/cons of I.S. It AIN'T a must have.
     
  15. No need to apologize David, just not sure if you are aware of the search on here.

    As to the OP. I may be the minority here but I find very little use for IS. Maybe I am pretty steady or maybe its my subject matter ( usually moving or studio setups with light ) but the 2.8 Non IS does very well for me. I do have a 24-105 with IS and I would say on average the IS helps about 10% of the time for me but with F4 I need it more. I am not saying I do not want IS or its bad but depending on you it may not be as useful as you would think.

    I have only used the 2.8 Non Is and its super sharp even wide open, I hear they are all good though. I would seriously consider the used route if you go non IS. People are always dumping them to get IS. I got mine for a great price used. They are tanks so just inspect it to make sure the glass is in good shape.
     
  16. Ken,
    How can you possibly never run into camera shake as a limiting factor? Every photographer in existence has ruined a few frames from camera shake, I don't believe you are the exception. I certainly find it hard to believe any pros still need convincing of the benefits of IS. No IS is not a must have, in the same way that auto focus and digital are not must haves, but they sure make life easier and get the keeper rate up.
    My point was if you are not pushing the boundaries of handholdability then you are not pushing yourself, if you are pushing those boundaries then IS will help.
     
  17. Here's a hand-held shot that would have turned out far worse without IS.
    00VEna-200069684.jpg
     
  18. I have the f2.8 IS version, which was the only IS version available when I bought, but would have considered the f4.0 IS, had it been available: almost exactly half the weight, reputedly slightly sharper, newer IS (supposedly good for one more stop?), etcetera. The weight of the 2.8 can become significant on a long walk.
     
  19. IS surely can be helpful but I think this is a bit off topic to the op. Sure everyone would love a 70-200 2.8 IS but not everyone can afford one or even feel the need to spend that much on a lens assuming many here are not making a living on photography or just want to spend an extra $500 to have IS. Its funny when someone asks about a lens someone always suggests the best lens made and not a lens within the budget of the post. I think the question is would you take a Canon non IS tele. lens over a Tamron or Sigma?
     
  20. Tommy,
    My first point was to choose the f4 IS over the 2.8 non IS if you can't afford the 2.8 IS, so I was on message. As an extension to that, especially where the four Canon 70-200's are concerned, I would definitely get the best one I could afford, or would want to pay for my hobby, rather than get an off brand "higher spec" one.
    Besides I like the way threads ramble, isn't that the best way to learn new stuff?
    Take care, Scott.
     
  21. Go for Canon.
    The 200mm f2.8L is a lot of lens for the money.
    Your choice after that will be dictated in some degree by the body you use:
    APS-C : The 70-200 f2.8 non-IS has a better rep as it is slightly sharper and stands up to the cropping better than the still very good IS version.
    You really want the f2.8 version on most cropped bodies to get the best out of the AF system.
    The f2.8 over f4 is also a stop of difference, so faster shutter is possible which may even negate the use of IS altogether for many users.
    I find the limiting factor with telephoto lenses is actually motion blur from the subject, not the camera. Higher ISO or faster shutter come ahead of IS for this artefact.
    I don't understand the 'not pushing themselves' comment either. But then I am merely a hobbyist who enjoys his photography. I'm going to get the 70-200 f2.8 non-IS after christmas, not to appear pro, but to save my back. I will still, and will always have a superclamp or tripod with me at all times.
     
  22. Paul,
    I explained the comment like this "My point was if you are not pushing the boundaries of handholdability then you are not pushing yourself, if you are pushing those boundaries then IS will help."
    So what if you are a hobbyist, you would benefit from IS as much as anybody. At less than 10 ounces between the 2.8 non IS and the IS version weight is not the best determining factor for getting the non IS version. Price and perceived need are better factors for discounting the IS. Same as IQ, anybody that gets a non IS version because they believe the IQ is noticeably better than an IS version simply hasn't used the two in the real world.
    There is a need and market for all four of Canon's 70-200 lenses, it is one of the most popular threads on this forum, it makes sense to talk about peoples preferences and requirements and help them to choose the one that would work for them best, but some people don't translate their experience to the poster. How any pro could not recommend IS to nearly anybody but very specific (always well supported or well lite) users I don't know. I have lost too many images to camera shake, I know I am not the only one.
     
  23. You will never regret the Sigma 70-200MM F2.8 HSM, this lens is so well balanced that no other lens in this range can beat it, careful not to come close to a nikon one and be sorry for the rest of your life.
     
  24. Scott Ferris [​IMG] , Dec 12, 2009; 04:26 p.m.
    Same as IQ, anybody that gets a non IS version because they believe the IQ is noticeably better than an IS version simply hasn't used the two in the real world.
    At less than 10 ounces between the 2.8 non IS and the IS version weight is not the best determining factor for getting the non IS version.​
    Hi Scott, my back comment was down to the fact that I am currently carrying around a 70 f2.8 (sigma) 135 f2.8 Canon and the 200 f2.8, not about any weight difference between the two. A few ounces would not make a difference, the huge number of pounds difference will and is the difference between me replacing my current body with a 50D or a 7D.
    Any review I've read by trusted sources (dpreview, photozone) point out the slight difference between the two, saying the non-IS is sharper, particularly on an APS-C body. That issue seals it with a £500 backdrop, I had a 70-300 IS and it worked just fine, I don't miss it now i've not got it.
    How any pro could not recommend IS to nearly anybody but very specific (always well supported or well lite) users I don't know. I have lost too many images to camera shake, I know I am not the only one.​
    I'm not a pro photographer. I always appreciate the extra opinion that a forum that this brings. I also appreciate the experience of lab testing lenses and I also know my own shooting style and what works for me.
    I am a pro cameraman however, and in all of the cirumstances I can think of where i've been using a compact video camera and therefore had the option I can't think where IS would have saved an image (getting bottled by rioting soccer fans in manchester or camping at the summit of Goat Fell for sunrise timelapse in winter, both circumstances where I was pushing myself a bit) the reason being I always use a camera support. Always. And if you think camera tripods are heavy, try a video tripod, vinten pro or satchler... Thats my style and so IS is pretty much irrelevant for me.
    £500 for a redundant function or a sharper lens?
    Sharper lens please.
    If I'm shooting in lower light I'll put up with the higher ISO noise or lean against a wall, or pull out the superclamp (which every photographer should have) I've taken a few shots in low light with IS and it's not been apparant until I've got back to the PC that it hasn't worked as well as hoped, a fast shutter or tripod is simply better. For me. Thats my experience.
     
  25. "My point was if you are not pushing the boundaries of handholdability then you are not pushing yourself, if you are pushing those boundaries then IS will help."
    Obvious, yes. Nothing to argue there. Also, in lieu of IS, for decades:
    1. Use a tripod
    2. Use MLU
    3. Use a cable release
    4. Bump ISO to 800 or more (modern DSLRs kick ass at high ISOs)
    5. Drag your shutter with a flash
    Not saying I.S. isn't nice.
     
  26. How any body would not recommend IS... people have budgets, I would love to have a Lexus IS F, but it is out of my budget. So what is the best lens that one can afford is how the thread started.
     
  27. stp

    stp

    If I had unlimited funds and wanted to purchase a Canon 70-200mm zoom, I'd choose the f/4, and I'd probably get the IS version for those very, very limited occasions when I don't use a tripod. If I needed to pinch pennies, I'd get the non-IS version. I have the f/4 and f/2.8 zooms, and I haven't used the f/2.8 for a couple of years.
     
  28. Paul,
    Thanks for the feedback. You fall into the very small minority who would not benefit from IS, being as how you fall into my "always well supported category". In that case finance alone gives you 500 reasons to choose the non IS over the IS :)
    Ken,
    Thanks for the feedback too. I use all the techniques you list, and live view with 10x zoom for manual focus. However I deliberately posted an image that none of these techniques would have worked on. I am off to photograph my sister in a concert tonight, similar circumstances to John's image, no support allowed, IS will enable me to get images. I find high ISO to still be a letdown when printed, it is fine if you have a comparatively bright subject and are just dialing in high ISO to bump up the shutter speed, but when you get down to lower EV's I still don't like the prints I get from high ISO. Certainly when I play off 800ISO prints against 200ISO prints that used IS to regain the two stops I am happier with the latter.
    Manuel,
    Thanks for the comment, but I did say financial reasons were a good reason to not get IS. I have a budget too :) I answered the original thread thus, "My first point was to choose the f4 IS over the 2.8 non IS if you can't afford the 2.8 IS, so I was on message. As an extension to that, especially where the four Canon 70-200's are concerned, I would definitely get the best one I could afford, or would want to pay for my hobby, rather than get an off brand "higher spec" one." I think that covered your concerns and the OP's question.
    Take care all, Scott.
     
  29. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    “as much as I want the canon 70-200 2.8 IS it is just out of the budget. Any other thoughts on good lenses?”
    Lots of good lenses, but it is a bit difficult to suggest one without some details of what you intend to do with the lens . . . but then again I don’t think any one has asked you, ? ? ?
    So I will –
    WHY do you want a 70 to 200F/2.8IS?
    WHAT do you intend to shoot with it?
    WHAT camera are you using?
    DO you think you will use that camera for the next two years or so?
    Please respond, thanks.
    ***
    Hi Scott, are you still bashing that IS drum? Crikey it’s loud!
    “Those who don't feel the need for IS simply do not push themselves hard enough.”
    That’s a great line, but I liked this one better:
    “How any pro could not recommend IS to nearly anybody but very specific users I don't know.”
    ***
    For full discloser I understood all of Scott’s comments, and I agree that it is indeed a rare circumstance that IS will not eventually be of benefit to mostly all Photographers, if they extend themselves and at every available opportunity – especially those Photographers who do not have the funds to specifically designate a particular lens to do a particular job.
    Also, I am one who thrives on pushing limits – and I can pull (what I consider) some good shots with the EF70 to 200F/2.8L + x2.0 and Hand Held, which is perhaps pushing oneself hard, by Scott’s definition (e.g. : http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=944717 ).
    But just because I can do that, it does not mean that I could not do more, in some situations, with the IS version of that lens.
    My EF70 to 200F/2.8L was purchased basically for a specific job and I bought it just for that singular purpose and I am very happy with the lens – I do not “need” a 70 to 200F/2.8LIS – but I can borrow one. :)
    When I covered the State Snowboarding Championships, I used the borrowed 70 to 200F2.8L IS – because I wanted to use IS panning mode 2 – especially for shots at dawn of the Practice Runs . . . and it’s bloody difficult to set a tripod with a fluid damped panning head, on snow – and to stay light weight and mobile.
    One has to be very sure that IS will never be of any use whatsoever, before one decides to buy a non IS lens.
    Although as a generalization, I agree that for most folk the F/4 with IS would be the better choice for "all round Photography” . . . the 70 to 200 set of four lenses are a special case IMO:
    because of the very fine nuance in the detail of comparing and contrasting 1 stop of aperture to the expected use of IS . . . the choice between the EF70 to 200F/4L IS USM and the EF70 to 200F/2.8L USM is so much dependent upon the intended application of the lens and the camera(s) the lens is to be used on.
    This is more so than for the comparison of any other pair of lenses which is "similar".
    Thus, it would really benefit us all, if we knew the intended uses for this lens which is to be purchased.
    WW
     
  30. Hi William,
    Sorry yes still banging the drum. I don't so often now but knocking IS is getting more common so I thought I'd wade in. You know how I like to poke the hornets nest!
    I was only looking at your 2x folder the other day, that swimmers head is particularly impressive, I had every intention of linking to it on the next 70-200 f2.8 IS + 2x TC vs 100-400 thread :)
    Take care, Scott.
     
  31. If you simply must have a 70-200, go for the 70-200/4 non IS. Light, sharp, unobtrusive and a lot less expensive tha the 2.8 IS.
    My 2p
     
  32. I had the 70-200f4 IS for about 18 months it is a fantastic lens. I then swaped to the 2.8 IS beacuse I needed a faster lens and it's great for blowing out the background. People say the f/4 is is the sharpest, this is true but beacuse wide open it,s only f/4. The 2.8 IS at f/4 is on par with the f/4 is. My 2.8 IS at 2.8 is nearly as sharp as my macro lens at all focal lengths but at 200mm it drops off slightly.
    Bulid quality of both is the best I've ever seen, you'll can be confident they will both perform as well on FF, unlike the edge performance of the Nikon.
    I have a 24-70 2.8 L and at that focal length I don't need IS, I wouldn't say no to it but it does'nt exist and if it did it would be £500 more,judging by the difference IS makes on the 70-200 lens, and I wouldn't pay for it on a 24 70 lens. I would pay it on a 70-200, and it is invaluable if you use TC's.
    You need to know what you want the lens for, the f/4 IS is great for your own photos as a hobby, you can afford to miss a shot, the non 2.8 is the one to get if your going to shoot sports where IS is useless beacause you,ll need fast shutter speed.
    But if you want to cover everything the only way to go is the 2.8 IS
    I wouldn,t get third party lenses the difference between the sigma 70 200 and the canon 70 200 2.8 non IS is about £200, get the canon you can realy see where you're money is going when you pick it up
     
  33. People say the f/4 is is the sharpest, this is true but beacuse wide open it,s only f/4​
    That's a good hypothesis, but judging by the target shots at The-Digital-Picture, the f4.0 is consistantly sharper than the f2.8, at any comparable focal length. They are both sharp enough to hurt yourself, for that matter ;)
     
  34. you're right, if your shooting test charts, but in the real world the difference is so small it doesn't matter. As with any fast lenses including primes, they all perform worse wide open. A lot of photographers including my self buy fast lenses, and only using it wide open when necessary, so if you shoot at 5.6 you'll get better results from a fast 2.8 lens then a lens that starts at 5.6. Now this it what makes the 70-200 f/4 IS amazing it doesn't loose any thing wide open.
    The only problem with people who don't understand lenses is that they grab a 2.8 IS, and a f/4 IS and test them both wide open and wonder why there is a difference.
    I loved the f/4 IS, I was reluctent to give it up, but when your in a church and you need to shoot at an 80th at least to capture people, at 200mm IS makes all the difference, and with an f/4 I would be restricted to a 40th, it would be unusable.I wouldn't buy a 2.8 IS just for bokeh, at 200mm f/4 is quite good.
    I took my 2.8 IS to a shop to test a new body, the salesman had a 2.8 non IS, he bought it beacuse of all the talk about the non IS being sharper. He was shocked how my 2.8IS was equal to his non IS, may be I have a very good copy.
    A f/2.8 lens can do what a f/4 can, but a f/4 can't do what a f/2.8 can. If you're trying to decide between the two and you don't know how valuable it is to shoot at an 80th instead of a 40th, then you don't need the 2.8 otherwise you would just buy it knowing that anything else won't do.
    If you're planning to go pro save you're money and get the 2.8 IS, don't get the f/4! If you're doing it for fun get the f/4 non IS, you'll have time to set up a tripod and if you miss the shot, no big deal. You'll know when you need something at 2.8 or with IS or with both. You won't loose a lot of money on any of the 70-200 canon lenses if you sell it.
     
  35. thanks this really has helped me.
    I am planning to go pro and I plan to do weddings in the future.....
    I shot my frist wedding this past summer for friends and it was a small wedding and I loved it.
    So all the talk and the reviews even though I would love to save some money it seems like the canon 2.8 IS is the only way to go considering my future needs. I don't want to invest in something and then a year down the road say why did i not just spend the extra few hundred or whatever....
     
  36. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    "that swimmers head is particularly impressive, I had every intention of linking to it on the next 70-200 f2.8 IS + 2x TC vs 100-400 thread"

    Full disclosure, and for Scott especially, if you are still reading . . . I just went back to interrogate my files, because it is important to note the whole gig and everything which was shot on the day, as it is easy to only show the odd one good shot and claim success and not to ask about the whole roll of proofs . .

    Those two samples in my 70 to 200F/2.8L + 2.0MkII Pushing Limits - Hand Held - (And also stuff for the pixel peepers) folder, were from this set: http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=942325 which was my second attempt at the Reportage Assignment from this thread: http://www.photo.net/wedding-photography-forum/00UrFo .

    I went to that Swimming training camp specifically to create "a story" in nine shots.

    On that afternoon I pulled 109 frames, of which 39 were using the 70 to 200 + 2.0MkII. (Yes I am miserly when shooting, even with digital)

    Of those 39, 4 were me getting bored and shooting birds flying over head, so there were 35 . . . of the 35 there were 6 where I failed to get good focus - I back-focused (on the lane ropes not the swimmer's head. The DoF is about 6 inches) . . .

    That left 29 from 35 attempts which I assessed as "technical keepers", which were then available for artistic selection.

    IMO, 29 from 35 in the “Technically OK” bin is enough to recommend the very small investment of buying the x2.0MkII and the extra effort to carry it around all the time, much like I carry a set of Kenko extension rings all the time . . .

    The x1.4MkII is much more useful, and easier to use on the 70 to 200 F/2.8L, in my experience.

    WW
     
  37. Yep still here William,
    All interesting stuff, I will take my 70-200 and 2X out next time I am covering surfing, I normally use the 300 for that so I'll have a good comparison. Just waiting for the next 100-400 thread, I might well jump in and rustle a few feathers :)
    Digesting the linked threads, and the discipline in story telling.
    Take care, Scott.
     
  38. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    Neil Ambrose is a gentleman of the highest order and vey helpful, a true professional I have learnt a lot.
    And for something different . . . Take a look at this thread - http://www.photo.net/wedding-photography-forum/00VF78
    A very Merry Christmas Scott, All the best for 2010
    You Take care too,
    Regards,
    Bill
     

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