Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

Content

Get it now

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens

 

This Lens replaces the discontinued Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8l since this (2013) year.
Price-wise this lens is almost double the cost of the old 24-70mm 2.8 Canon, is it worth the extra cash? No, not really if you stick to DSLR cameras up to 20 mega pixels, but for future, above 20 Mpx it is highly recommendable.

What is major difference between this two lenses? Answer is, sharpness, edge to edge. Nothing you can’t repair with software usage for lower resolution display or prints but worth mentioning.

If you plan to use Canon 24 70 f2.8 lens on APS-C camera it would look like 38-112mm on the FF camera.

The constant f/2.8 aperture is great for shooting indoors and produces a very nice bokeh when shooting portraits. Note that the new Canon EF 24-70mm ii comes without IS as well.

You can use this lens for portrait and wedding photography, landscapes, sports, and anything else that doesn’t require extreme telephoto capabilities. Even macro looks decent with this lens, with adding macro extender you could get amazing macro photos. For landscape shots, on APS-C (crop body) cameras, it may be too ‘narrow’, and you could pair it with Canons EF-S 10-22 USM lens to round up your Landscape kit.

[spoiler style=”2″ title=”Pros & Cons”]
PROS CONS
Sharpness Wide open barrel distortion 1.7%
Quiet, fast and accurate AF
Minimum Focus Distance
Maximum Magnification
Constant results
Bokeh
Weather sealing
Build quality
[/su_spoiler] [spoiler style=”2″ title=”Specifications”]
Performance
Focal Length 24-70mm
35mm equivalent FL (APS-C) 38-112mm
Aperture Maximum: f/2.8
Minimum: f/22
Camera Mount Type Canon EF
Format Compatibility 35mm Film / Full-Frame Digital Sensor
Canon (APS-C)
Angle of View 84° -34°
Angle of View (APS-C)
Minimum Focus Distance 0.38m (14.96″)
Magnification 0.21x
Groups/Elements 13/18
Diaphragm Blades 9
Features
Image Stabilization No
Autofocus Yes
AF motor type Micro-type USM
Focus – Zoom methods Focus Extending front
Zoom – Rotary (extending)
Tripod Collar No
Physical
Filter Thread 82 mm
Dimensions (DxL) Approx. 89 x 113mm (3.48 x 4.45 in)
Weight 805g (1.77 lb)
Included accessories Front and rear caps
Hood
Other Metal barrel, metal mount
Wheatear Sealing
Distance and DoF scale – Yes
[/su_spoiler]
[spoiler style=”2″ title=”Best Use”]
  • Weddings
  • Photojournalism
  • Low Light
  • Landscape/Scenery
  • Night Photography
  • Sports/Action
[/su_spoiler] [spoiler style=”2″ title=”Alternatives (Pros&Cons)”]
Lens W MFD MM Filter DB Year Price
Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8L I USM 950g
2.09lb
0.38m
14.96in
0.29x 77mm 8 2002 Discontinued
Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 EX DG HSM 790g
1.74lb
0.38m
1.24ft
0.19x 82mm 9 2008 $824.00
Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD 825g
1.82lb
0.38m
1.24ft
0.21x 82mm 9 2012 $1,299.00
Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM 600g
1.32lb
0.38m
1.24ft
0.70x 77mm 9 2012 $1,499.00
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM 670g
1.48lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.23x 77mm 8 2005 $1,149.00
Sigma 24-105mm f/4 DG OS HSM 885g
1.95lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.22x 82mm 9 2013 $899.00
Tamron AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) 765g
1.69lb
0.33m
1.08ft
67mm 7 $474.00
Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM 635g
1.40lb
0.28m
0.92ft
0.22x 82mm 7 2007 $1,699.00
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM 500g
1.10lb
0.28m
0.92ft
0.24x 77mm 7 2003 $839.00
Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM 565g
1.25lb
0.28m
0.92ft
0.20x 77mm 7 2010 $569.00
Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM 645g
1.42lb
0.35m
1.15ft
0.17x 77mm 8 2006 $1,179.00
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II 645g
1.42lb
0.25m
0.82ft
0.34x 58mm 6 2011 $199.00
Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM 565g
1.25lb
0.28m
0.92ft
0.20x 77mm 7 2010 $669.00
Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II VC LD (IF) 570g
1.26lb
0.29m
0.95ft
0.21x 72mm 7 $599.00
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM 670g
1.48lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.23x 77mm 8 2005 $1,149.00
Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM 650g
1.43lb
0.25m
0.82ft
0.17x 77mm 8 2008 $1,749.00
Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II 790g
1.74lb
0.21m
0.68ft
82mm 8 2009 $2,199.00
Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM 580g
1.28lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.15x 72mm 8 2006 $1,619.00
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM 290g
0.64lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.15x 58mm 8 2008 $399.00
Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 505g
1.11lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.14x 77mm 9 2008 $499.00
Carl Zeiss Planar T* f1.4 50mm 350g
0.77lb
0.45m
1.47ft
0.15x 58mm 9 $725.00
Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM 1025g
2.26lb
0.95m
3.11ft
0.11x 72mm 8 2006 $2,199.00
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM 425g
0.94lb
0.85m
2.79ft
0.13x 58mm 8 $419.00
Sigma 85mm F1.4 EX DG HSM 725g
1.60lb
0.85m
2.79ft
0.12x 77mm 9 2010 $969.00
Carl Zeiss Planar T* f1.4 85mm 700g
1.54lb
1.00m
3.28ft
0.15x 72mm 9 $1,283.00
Lens Pros Cons
Similar or same focal range Alternatives
Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 EX DG HSM Price
Stabilisation
Softer
Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USD Price
Stabilisation
Quieter
Softer in corners
Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM Price Slower f/4
Softer
Tamron AF 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) Price
Stabilisation
Softer
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Price
Stabilisation
Slower f/4
Softer
Sigma 24-105mm f/4 DG OS HSM Price
Stabilisation
Slower f/4
Softer
Similar price and focal range Alternatives
None
From FF to APS-C Alternatives (24-70mm->~15-44mm)*
Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM Price More distortion
Smaller Zoom range
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II Price More distortion
Build quality
No sealing
Focus speed
Image Quality
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM Price Slower
Sigma 17-50mm F2.8 EX DC OS HSM Price
Stabilisation
Softer
Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II VC LD (IF) Price
Stabilisation
Softer
Canon EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Price
Stabilisation
Build Quality
Only APS-C
No sealing
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Price
Stabilisation
Range
Slower
Softer
From APS-C to FF Alternatives (24-70mm->~38-112mm)**
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Price
Stabilisation
Range
Slower
Softer
Prime Alternatives (near range 15-112mm)
Canon EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM Prime lenses are in most cases better in all domains than zoom lenses. Some of these lenses are faster than Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 II, some of them are even sharper across frame.
It really depends on intended use, cause by it’s purpose, there is no logic to compare Zoom lenses with Primes.
You should know what you need before buying such expensive gear.
While some prime lenses have advantage over the Zoom lenses, they tend to cost more.
Please check disadvantage of each lens separately, some doesn’t have sealing, some are slower, some are worse build quality, some are not as sharp as Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 II, some doesn’t have auto focus (it is not negative, if you plan to use it as video lens) etc.
Zeiss lenses are usually sharper than Canon lenses, across whole frame, all with manual focus (MF) and great build quality, amazing especially for video.
Zeiss Distagon T* 15mm f/2.8 ZE
Zeiss Distagon T* 18mm f/3.5 ZE
Canon EF 20mm f/2.8 USM
Sigma 20mm f/1.8 EX Aspherical DG DF RF
Zeiss Distagon T* 21mm f/2.8 ZE
Canon EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM
Bower 24mm f/1.4 Wide-Angle
Zeiss Distagon T* 25mm f/2.0 ZE
Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 USM
Sigma 28mm f/1.8 EX Aspherical DG DF Macro AF
Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM
Zeiss Distagon 35mm T* f/2 ZE
Zeiss 35mm F/1.4 Distagon T
Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM
Canon EF 35mm f/2.0
Rokinon 35mm f/1.4 US UMC Aspherical
Canon EF 50mm f/1.2L USM
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM
Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM
Carl Zeiss Planar T* f1.4 50mm
Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM
Sigma 85mm F1.4 EX DG HSM
Carl Zeiss Planar T* f1.4 85mm
Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM
Carl Zeiss Makro-Planar T* 2/100
Sigma 105mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM
Other

* Listed lenses are the APS-C (1.6x crop) body alternatives to a field of view equal or close to one that Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 USM II produces when mounted on FF (full frame) sensor body
** Listed lenses are the FF (full frame) body alternatives to a field of view equal or close to one that Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8 USM II produces when mounted on APS-C (1.6x crop) sensor body

[/su_spoiler] For pixel peepers here are MTF charts:

Canon EF 24-70mm Wide MTF chartef_24-70_tele_mtf

Above are shown official MTF Charts for Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM lens from Canon site

Looking at MTF charts we can see how great this lens is. If you compare MTF charts with Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8 L II lens you can see why this lens got on our top list. With all respect to 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM, we believe that this will become one of the favorite lenses for Canon users.

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM attached on Canon 5D Mark II

Sharpness
At F2.8, central sharpness is extremely high at all focal lengths. The corners may not quite reach the same amazing heights, but they are still very good indeed.

Chromatic Aberration
Lateral chromatic aberration is very low. You will see a little fringing towards the edges and corners if you are really going to look for it.

Vignetting
Vignetting is, as usual, stronger on FF compared to APS-C. It goes away on telephoto end at f4.

Distortion
As well as Vignetting it is more pronuounced on FF compared to APS-C. By dpreview graphs you can see that on wide end it has not small distortion of 1.7%, while on telephoto end it goes to pincushion distortion of -1.6%. You should not have any problems with this unless you shoot some geometric compositions. We believe software can correct this issue pretty well.

Bottom line for the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 Lens

Great all-around lens with amazing sharpness and colors, IQ close to the one we can see with the primes and yes, primes could cover this range with little better image quality and less distortions, but then you would have a risk of not catching a moment cause of lens lens exchange and we believe price would be even higher to cover 24-70mm range. This is must have lens if you plan in advance, although some may choose Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 DI VC USD with image stabilization, great image quality and similar price range as discontinued 24-70mm f/2.8 L MK I, while some might pick Canon EF 24-105 f/4 L over it. It all comes down to you and what you want and need. We strongly suggest to rent this lens to see if it fits your desires. For ones that will or own Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM, we believe it will be one of their favorite Canon L lenses.

Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II – Sample photos

Canon 5D3 and Canon 24-70mm f2.8L II USM lens test
Yellowstone
Dusk at Cottontail Lake
_MG_1111

You can buy this lens in these stores:

24-70mm-f2-8-mk-II
Canon EF 24-70mm f.28 mk II

Buy Rent

Read more reviews about Canon EF 24-70mm:
Canon EF 24-70mm f2.8L II Review by KenRockwell
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM review by Digital Photography Review
Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM Lens Review by The-Digital-Picture.com
Canon EF 24-70mm – Canon5Dtips Rummors
Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L mark II Final Review by slrlounge

About Tommy

Photography allows me to be what I want to be, to be where I want to be, and to do what I want to do ... I'm not professional photographer and I don't need a title, I love to take photographs and that is what I do, I love to learn and I always try to do it better ...

Check Also

50mm_03

The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

This prime lens replaced the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 in 1991. It's built with plastic but very sharp. Note that on a cropped sensor DSLR body, it’s equivalent to 80mm (i.e. 50mm x 1.6 = 80 mm).