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Photography Question 
Jill Lenkowski
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/15/2006

Concerns when purchasing the Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS

I am looking to purchase the Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS USM Telephoto Lens.
I have heard almost nothing but great things especially concerning image quality.
This is my concern:
I am mainly a wedding photographer. I thought this would be a great lens to have in the church for ceremonies that you are not allowed to use flash and have low light. Now I know that this lens has IS (Image Stabalizer) but I still am SO concerned about the weight (4lbs.) and size (it looks HUGE on the camera) Will this be a sufficent lens to have for weddings when I have fairly small arms, move around a lot, and change lenses quite a bit?!
Any input or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


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11/17/2006 8:50:27 AM

Michael H. Cothran   Given your specific needs for a lens, I don't think you have a choice. It is ideal for what you need, both in speed and focal length. However, it is a behemoth to hand hold, especially for long periods of time. Your best bet is to rest your left arm as much as possible between shots. I'd also recommend a separate body to use specifically with this lens so you don't have to change lenses during the ceremony. If weight is a real issue, you might consider one of Canon's fixed focal length lenses like the 85/1.4 or 135/2.
Michael H. Cothran

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11/17/2006 11:16:07 AM

Jon Close
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/18/2000
  Ditto the choice of one or more of EF 85 f/1.8 USM, EF 85 f/1.2L USM II, EF 100 f/2 USM, or EF 135 f/2L USM. Besides lighter weight, they are 1 stop faster maximum aperture (2 1/2 stops for the f/1.2) than the f/2.8 zoom, and marginally sharper. Also, each is much shorter and painted black so that they don't call attention to you as much as the big white 70-200.

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11/17/2006 11:48:58 AM

Jill Lenkowski
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/15/2006
  This is great information but i'm really looking for a longer length lens. Usually I stay VERY far back from the alter area so I don't cause a distraction. Any suggestions on a longer length lens that is great?! something in the 200-400 range would be great.

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11/17/2006 11:53:17 AM

Michael H. Cothran   There are plenty of fast lenses (f2.8) available between 200-400mm. None in my opinion would be hand holdable, especially by someone who admits to having "fairly small arms." I think you have crossed the line of what is available and/or usable for weddings. 200-400mm lenses are not made to be hand held, and certainly not engineered with the wedding photographer in mind (especially for indoor shots). Realistically, you just need to move in closer, or shoot, and be satisfied with wider angled shots from way back.
Michael H. Cothran
PS - OK, you could mount said super telephoto lens on a monopod or tripod for support. But even with a monopod, I think your percentage of blurry shots will be far greater than your sharp images. Maybe 100% greater!

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11/17/2006 3:31:45 PM

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