Canon 70-200 is 2.8 vs. Canon 70-200 is 2.8 ii

This post is out of my norm for blog posts, not that I blog a lot but someday I will get better at it! That being said I truly thought this info was definitely worth sharing!! In my research before purchasing the  70-200 L 2.8 IS version 1 did anyone ever say anything like this about this lens so I am going to spill the truth! Now, I am no expert in lens reviews but you can look up comparisons charts and listen to people talk about the differences between the two lenses and good luck finding a whole lot on them it was hard to find any negative on buying the first version of this  lens with our higher grade digital cameras. Some talked about color/saturation differences and some talked about light allowance differences and sun flare but that was about it. No one ever said anything about soft images and this lens not truly being  compatible with digital, I understand to each his own and some like softer images than others but I personally like the assurance of sharpness in my images. So I am here to say If you are considering buying the first generation 70-200 IS 2.8 L and you have a digital camera don’t waist your time or money, wait until you have the money to buy the newer version you will not regret it!  Here is why… In the last couple of weeks I have been noticing my images have been soft when I use my Canon 70-200mm L IS 2.8 version 1 lens and I am thinking to myself “what is going on??” so I put all of my other lenses on and try them I am kind of noticing the same thing with all of them and now I am thinking OH GREAT, it has to be my camera!! Apparently I like living on the edge and playing roulette because I don’t have a back up and that’s bad!! So I take it to the trusty guys at Kenmore Camera and we test the camera to make sure that’s not the problem. So they put it on a tripod took some images at the center focal point to compare it with what is actually in focus and then turned on this handy function that good folks at Canon put in the 5D Mark ii called AF Microadjustment and it turns out my lenses have been back focusing a little, so they fix that in all of my lenses and when it comes time for the 70-200’s turn and it was pretty close to being calibrated already but still shooting soft!! SO frustrating as its my favorite lens! So of course I ask the nice gentleman “why is it doing this?” “Well” he proceeds to tell me, the version 1 was made during the film camera era and film cameras are a lot more forgiving than digital cameras, hence the soft images on digital. When Canon upgraded the lens they made it completely compatible with all of our digital cameras and that’s why they are not even making the version one anymore, note to self if it’s lens Canon doesn’t make anymore don’t buy it!!! Moving on… He proceeds to put the newer NON IS version on my camera and it still takes soft images! Well… it’s because it still has some of the same features as the version one. Then he puts the version 2 70-200 on and voila!!!!! Crystal clear images so clear to the point I almost started crying and I felt like the heavens opened and I was able to see clearly! Yes I am female and I got a little emotional, but I was so excited I couldn’t help it!! I immediately asked him to get the trade in started!! So after about an hour of playing at the candy store (Kenmore Camera) I bought the new version of 70-200 lens and I couldn’t be happier! So if you are looking for a good review on the version 1 of this lens I can’t give you one. Subtle differences in color and the greater amount of light that is allowed in are not that big of a deal to me, it’s really the clarity and sharpness of the images and that’s what you get with the version two. Another great note on this newer version I can tell you is if you like to shoot in full sun as much as I do the version 2 is for you because the version one CAN NOT handle sun flare! AT ALL!! That should have been a deal breaker for me in and of it self! Here are the differences between the three 70-200 lenses all shot on a tripod, so there was no hand shake, at the exact same settings we shot in the center focal point at 1/125 shutter speed, aperture 2.8 and ISO 1250


First generation 70-200 is 2.8 L on a canon 5D mark ii with a tripod


70-200  2.8 L non is version ii on a canon 5D mark ii with a tripod


70-200 IS 2.8 L version 2 on a canon 5D mark ii with a tripod


Exact same settings and all SOOC with three different lenses can you see the differences!!!? It is plain to see if you expect clarity in your images get the new version of this lens!! I hope this helps someone out there to not make the same mistake I did with this lens. I truly love the new version and couldn’t be happier, if you have the means to get the new version of this lens, get it you will not regret it!!! Here is a great tool in comparing lenses to see before you buy

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