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70-200 F2.8 IS USM III?

k3v14r
New Contributor

Is there any scheduled, or rumored update to the legendary canon 70-200 F2.8 IS USM II? It has been about five years since the refresh and I want to purchase one but not if it will be updated in the next season.

 

Thank you,

 

Kevin

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

TCampbell
Esteemed Contributor

Lenses typically don't get a refresh unless there's a reason to do an update.  

 

The EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM (original) was (and still is) an EXTREMELY good lens.   The mark "II" version of this lens improved upon it -- the lens is very fractionally sharper at center, and slightly more than fractionally sharper around the edges. The image stabilization is also improved.

 

The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM II is currently not just the best out of 70-200 lenses that can fit on your Canon... but the best lens in that category across the industry (nobody makes a better 70-200).

 

Sigma, Tamron, and Nikon all have lenses with either the same or very similar focal length ranges available with f/2.8 aperture... but all of them have very significant "breathing" issues.  All lenses have "breathing" issues to some extent.  "Breathing" means that if you very carefully look at the edges of your frame and then change the focus, you'll notice that as the focus changes, the lens appears to also be zooming in or out (just by the focus changing -- not touching the zoom ring.)

 

On the Canon, this "breating" is insiginficant... at the 200mm end, the breathing might change by perhaps 10mm tops.  But the Sigma, Tramron, and Nikon versions have significant breathing... depending on your focus, your focal length might only be 130 or 140mm (even though the zoom ring says you're at 200).   

 

I think you're pretty safe in that Canon wont likely be updating this lens anytime soon.  There's just not any reason to update it again.

 

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

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TCampbell
Esteemed Contributor

The circular polarizer is fantastic for landscape (it sounds like you want to photograph landscape) because foliage tends to have a "waxy" or somewhat glossy coating on the leaves and that creates a reflection  Those reflects dull the image because the plants look "less green" than they really are.

 

Anytime light reflects off a shiny surface (no matter how microscopic the shiny surface) it causes the light to take on an polarized wave pattern.  Non-reflective surfaces "scatter" light.  Flat paint "scatters", glossy paint "reflects" light.  But you can think of every surface as a hybrid of a flat color with a shiny coating.  The shiny coating gives a reflection from other sources of light, but if you take away that shiny reflection you would see the "true" color of the object below the shiny layer.

 

The circular polarizer allows you to selectively choose which angles of polarization can pass through the filter and this lets you selective "reject" just the reflections.

 

The result:  Your images will seem to be more saturated with color... the greens of the foliage look greener.  The blues of the sky look bluer.  The white puffy clouds look whiter and punch out stronger.  

 

The filter works best when the source of light (usually the sun) is originating from some orthogonal (the closer to orthogonal, the better) as these reflective angles will very strongly polarize the light and allow the filter to work exceptionally well.  If the sun is nearly straight ahead or nearly nearly straight behind the camera then the polarization doesn't work nearly as well.

 

 

Apart from that, a protective filter can be used if you're in a situation where you think you need the protection.  I "own" a UV filter for every lens that I have.  But these filters are not usually on the lenses.  If I'm going out in less-favorable shooting conditions (dusty, windy, perhaps rainy or I think I might catch some spray, etc.) then I might put the filter on.  The coated filters (MRC) are the best because the coating repels dirt, but more importantly the coating increases light transmission and reduces reflectivity.  If you look at a piece of "clear" glass and can see your reflection in it, that means some light hit the filter and bounced back toward you INSTEAD of passing through the lens.  A lens (filter) with excellent anti-reflective coatings will let nearly all the light pass through and almost nothing is reflected back at you.

 

You may wonder why you'd worry about reflectivity of "some" light when you're in a shooting situation where light is abundant.  But the reality is that if light can reflect "out" then light can also reflect "in".  Image you set up two mirrors that face each other so you see that infinity of a reflection of a reflection of a reflection, etc.  Your lens' outer-most element can be a tiny bit reflective.  If the clear filter you thread on to the front of the lens is ALSO reflective then you have the potential to get reflections in your image that were caused by the filter itself (not really present in the scene -- and I think a number of UFOs can be attributed to this problem.)  Since the filter is "clear" but still gives a reflection, what you usually get is a "ghosting" effect.

 

Here's an example of two filters:

 

UV filters & anti-reflective coatings

 

I placed both filters on a piece of black cardboard stock.  There is a desk-lamp out of frame.  These filters are both placed so that the light source doesn't really favor one more than the other (not in any significant way - and you can see the shadows of the boxes that these filter came in as a stronger clue as to where the light source is positioned.)

 

The "filter" on the right almost looks like a black ring that doesn't even have glass in it -- I promise you there is a filter in that ring even though you don't see a reflection, shine, or loss of contrast.  

 

The "filter" on the left definitely has a shine on the glass and you can see there's a loss of contrast when viewing the "black" card stock under the filter (which now looks "gray" instead of "black.)  

 

That's the benefit of buying a high-quality filter with good coatings.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

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11 REPLIES 11

TCampbell
Esteemed Contributor

Lenses typically don't get a refresh unless there's a reason to do an update.  

 

The EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM (original) was (and still is) an EXTREMELY good lens.   The mark "II" version of this lens improved upon it -- the lens is very fractionally sharper at center, and slightly more than fractionally sharper around the edges. The image stabilization is also improved.

 

The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM II is currently not just the best out of 70-200 lenses that can fit on your Canon... but the best lens in that category across the industry (nobody makes a better 70-200).

 

Sigma, Tamron, and Nikon all have lenses with either the same or very similar focal length ranges available with f/2.8 aperture... but all of them have very significant "breathing" issues.  All lenses have "breathing" issues to some extent.  "Breathing" means that if you very carefully look at the edges of your frame and then change the focus, you'll notice that as the focus changes, the lens appears to also be zooming in or out (just by the focus changing -- not touching the zoom ring.)

 

On the Canon, this "breating" is insiginficant... at the 200mm end, the breathing might change by perhaps 10mm tops.  But the Sigma, Tramron, and Nikon versions have significant breathing... depending on your focus, your focal length might only be 130 or 140mm (even though the zoom ring says you're at 200).   

 

I think you're pretty safe in that Canon wont likely be updating this lens anytime soon.  There's just not any reason to update it again.

 

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

View solution in original post

k3v14r
New Contributor
Awesome! Thank you so much for the prompt and detailed reply. I will pick one up today 🙂 hopefully I fill have some great pics to share soon.

ScottyP
Respected Contributor
Tim is right. The version 1 was in production from 2001 to 2010 and the version 2 has been in production since 2010. This does not mean version 2 is going to only last 10 years like its predecessor though, so I would think it has a lot more lifespan ahead of it than just 2020 because it has no competition that is better.

I read the rumor sites for both Canon and Sigma. These sites don't know everything but there is zero chatter about either one doing an upgrade of their 70-200 f/2.8 lenses. Sigma has not indicated any desire to create an "Art" version and claims to be sticking to its old pre-global vision 70-200. I just can't see this lens being updated any time soon. It is a great lens and no one who follows these things anywhere I have ever heard of is expecting a replacement any time soon.
Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?

ScottyP
Respected Contributor
Did I mention you will have no regrets if you buy it? 😉

It is not just super sharp and super smooth and fast at focusing and solidly made with metal. It makes really lovely images. I was blown away from the first card full of shots. And I bought a couple years ago when it was $2500.

Best of luck!
Scott

Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?

k3v14r
New Contributor
That is good to know. I am stationed in the pacific now so it's hard for me to pass up the chance to take some of the most beautiful photographs I may never have the opportunity to take.

"The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM II is currently not just the best out of 70-200 lenses that can fit on your Canon... but the best lens in that category across the industry (nobody makes a better 70-200)."

 

Absolutely!  It really doesn't matter even if an upgrade is coming out.  This lens is so good you will love it.  It is my favorite lens and I have many.  I also have the Sigma and the Tamron and the Nikon.  The Nikkor is in second place followed closely by the Tamron.  But any of these are very good, the Canon is, just the best one!

 

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!

TCampbell
Esteemed Contributor

I own a number of Canon L series lenses, but the 70-200 f/2.8 is the lens that usually "lives" on my camera body.  I use it more than any other.

 

Though some might think of this as a lens for taking photographs of subjects at a distance away, I actually prefer it for taking photos of subjects that are relatively close.  Shooting a portrait shot of a subject at the 200mm focal length using f/2.8 or even f/4 -- and with the subject at a relatively close focusing distance means you get a gorgeous background blur that most other lenses wont provide.

 

If I'm in a crowd, I usually have to flip to a shorter focal length lens because if I don't, people will get between me and my subject.  But if I'm not in a crowd, I prefer the look I get when I shoot with a narrow angle of view using the 200mm end of the lens -- even when it's not the sort of subject you'd normally grab a 200mm lens to shoot.

 

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da

k3v14r
New Contributor
Any recommendations for first filter? I shoot mostly daylight, well lit, some scenes with water, landscapes, etc. I am primarily looking for protection of my new "baby" lol (I have no kids, so this will have to do)

  Yes.

The  B+W 77mm UV Haze MRC 010M Filter and the B+W 77mm Circular Polarizer MRC Filter.  Don't forget filters unscrew as easily as they screw on.  

 

 

 

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!