Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM | Still Great Lens in 2023

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM | Still Great Lens in 2023

The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM was the first of series for its respected focal length coming out in August 2001. It was the first real professional zoom lens for the EF mount and would go on to become one of the most popular and crucial focal lengths for live event photographers. In 2023, there have been two updated releases of the lens along with a new RF 70-200 for Canon’s mirrorless cameras.

While there is an f/4 version of the lens, we highly recommend taking advantage of getting the f/2.8 version for low-light and better portrait performance. The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM is currently roughly $1349 new and between $700-1000 used. If money is tight and you need a professional telephoto lens for your full frame camera, definitely take a look at this lens! I have used it not only on Canon DSLRs but also on Canon, Sony and Panasonic’s mirrorless cameras and it works perfectly. I was especially impressed with how snappy the auto focus was on the Sony A7R IV. Watch the full video review and check out some talking points on what makes this lens great in 2023 below:

Key Specs:

  • Weather sealed
  • f/2.8 Constant
  • Release Date: August 2001
  • Ring-Type USM focusing motor
  • Weight: 1570g
  • Size: 3.4in x 7.8in




1. f/2.8 Constant Aperture – having a 2.8 aperture is crucial especially in professional photography. This will not only allow you to blow out that background to create beautiful portraits, it will also allow you to let more light in while shooting in low-light situations. Its amazing what 1 extra aperture stop can do for you.

2. Great Price Point – The fact that you can get this lens between 700-1000 USD used is mind blowing. There is not many other lenses to compare to at this price point as most of them are garbage. The lens may be old but it still out performs most lenses under 1000 dollars. If you just purchased a full frame camera and are lookinging to get this focal length, check this one out. The version 2 and 3 of this lens both are well over 1500 dollars and if your budget is tight, this will do the trick

3. Incredible Build Quality – The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM is built like a tank. Don’t be afraid to take this out in the rain as it is weather sealed. It also has a nice metal shell and the focus rings are smooth like butter. If you know you are going to be out photographing events/concerts multiple times a week, don’t cheap out and get a third party option. Get the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM as it will stand the test of time as long as you treat it right



1.  No Image Stabilization – It is a bummer that this lens does not have image stabilization. having the capability will allow you to do things like shoot at a lower shutterspeed and still maintain a sharp image. With the cost, it makes sense to leave the feature out but it is important in 2023. Just remember to be more careful and steady when shooting this lens and you will not run into many issues. If you do want image stabilization in your lens we recommend using the version 2 or 3.

2. The Lens Is Old – This lens was originally created back in 2001 and while it doesn’t show it’s age in image quality. The resale value of the lens will decrease over time making it harder to sell. There






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