I have this lens and adore it. I shall count the ways:
Love love love this lens. A steal at this price.
- Sharp as all get out: http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2012/06/the-other-canon-primes-why-did-they-do-that --> went punch for punch with the 24L
- Internal focusing -- nothing telescoping in or out that crap can get into.
- Other than lacking the WS gasket at the lens mount, this lens has the same build quality as the 100L macro. It's no 70-200 F/2.8 IS II, but it's very, very nice.
- F/2.8 plus 3-4 stops of IS absolutely beats F/1.4 to me. I am not shooting moving targets nearly so much as poorly lit things.
- Small, light, unassuming.
I agree 100%. It is a delight. Photographers can have very different needs, and sometimes one photographer doesn't see the point or value of a piece of gear that another photographer absolutely loves. Also, some photographers don't see any value in compact sized high-quality gear, whereas others prize it. I think there is value in both 1.4 lenses and 2.8 lenses, and don't always feel the need for the maximum aperture lens (which necessarily brings with it much greater size & weight). I didn't want to buy the original 28/2.8 with it's old style noisy autofocus. So the new small high-quality primes are a dream come true. I'm very glad that Canon is updating & upgrading their little primes and meeting the needs of more photographers. Let's hope they update the 50/1.4 and 50/1.8 too.