Is this IQ within spec for an EF 70-200/2.8 L IS mk. II?

navastronia

EOS RP + 5D Classic
Aug 31, 2018
421
482
I'm not happy with the performance of my EF 70-200/2.8 L IS mk. II at 200mm.

Here is a center 1:1 crop taken at 200mm, manually focused on the nail in the center-right of the board.

zoom 3 manual (1 to 1).jpg


Compare that to the image below, taken with the EF 200/2.8 L mk. II, again, manually focused to the nail on the center-right.

prime 3 manual (1 to 1).jpg


(apologizes, I had to bring up the exposure a little on this one - this test is not really scientific).

Opinions?
 
Last edited:

Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,419
1,064
Updated my 70-200/2.8? In which way? Apologies for not understanding.
I’m sorry, just read again and saw that you have the EF version. If it’s in a dslr try calibrate it again. Even manual focus can be tricky. Try also with live view . If everything is soft, have it sent to Canon. It looks too soft comparing with the 200 f2.8 for sure.
 

navastronia

EOS RP + 5D Classic
Aug 31, 2018
421
482
I’m sorry, just read again and saw that you have the EF version. If it’s in a dslr try calibrate it again. Even manual focus can be tricky. Try also with live view . If everything is soft, have it sent to Canon. It looks too soft comparing with the 200 f2.8 for sure.
Thank you! I appreciate your opinion. I focused in live-view on an EOS RP for both images.
 
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gwooding

I'm New Here
Oct 2, 2014
18
20
Johannesburg - South Africa
The 70 - 200 does look a little soft. Although I think you need to do a more scientific comparison between the two. Use good lighting, a tripod and make sure the ISO (the 70 - 200 shot seems noisier to me which doesn't help sharpness either) is fixed at 100. You should also disable IS (just to eliminate all variables).

Do you notice a big improvement when stopping the lens down?
 
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Mar 14, 2012
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Not for those shots, but I was at an SS of 1/500. On the 70-200, I had enabled stabilization.
I find that IS does not give the sharpest image. If you're testing the lenses against each other, then use the same technique. Use a tripod if you can and if you're handholding, disable IS to make it comparable to the prime. IS reduces camera/lens motion but it doesn't eliminate it.
 
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Viggo

EOS 5D SR
Dec 13, 2010
4,419
1,064
The mkII is definitely not softer than the 200 f2.8 L II, and for all intended purposes IS helps to get a sharper image. Personally I have never once gotten a sharper image without IS than with.
 
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navastronia

EOS RP + 5D Classic
Aug 31, 2018
421
482
Put her on a tripod for the most control possible and see what you get. I'd even use remote trigger if you have one.
The mkII is definitely not softer than the 200 f2.8 L II, and for all intended purposes IS helps to get a sharper image. Personally I have never once gotten a sharper image without IS than with.
I find that IS does not give the sharpest image. If you're testing the lenses against each other, then use the same technique. Use a tripod if you can and if you're handholding, disable IS to make it comparable to the prime. IS reduces camera/lens motion but it doesn't eliminate it.
The 70 - 200 does look a little soft. Although I think you need to do a more scientific comparison between the two. Use good lighting, a tripod and make sure the ISO (the 70 - 200 shot seems noisier to me which doesn't help sharpness either) is fixed at 100. You should also disable IS (just to eliminate all variables).

Do you notice a big improvement when stopping the lens down?
Tested again this morning.

-IS is set to "off" on the 70-200
-Tripod used w/ 2-second self-timer
-Focus set to center of chart
-exposure settings are the same
-manually focused using Live View on EOS RP, did 2 trials of each setup, then selected (and have included) the sharpest images
-stopped down each lens to 5.6, as well as tested wide open at 2.8

errors:
-had to move the chart between test setups because the light changed
-I didn't test this, but I know my copy of the 70-200 is much sharper below 135mm than it is above 135mm.

Is there something wrong with this lens? I'd like to sell it, but now I'm second guessing doing that out of fear that someone who buys it will think the lens is no good.

prime @ 200mm, f/2.8 (full view, 1:1 view)

prime 2.8 (ii) SMALL.jpg


prime 2.8 (ii) 1 to 1.jpg


zoom @ 200mm, 2.8 (full view, 1:1 view)

zoom 2.8 (i) SMALL.jpg


zoom 2.8 (i) 1 to 1.jpg


prime @ 200mm f/5.6, (full view, 1:1 view)

prime 5.6 (ii) SMALL.jpg

prime 5.6 (ii) 1 to 1.jpg


zoom @ 200mm f/5.6 (full view, 1:1 view)

zoom 5.6 (ii) SMALL.jpg


zoom 5.6 (ii) 1 to 1.jpg
 
Last edited:

navastronia

EOS RP + 5D Classic
Aug 31, 2018
421
482
I put in a service request with CPS, something I have never done before. I can't in good conscience sell this. I think there's something wrong with it. There's no way people could rant and rave about the 70-200 L IS mk. II and have it perform this poorly. I wish I realized it was this soft before I bought it - would have saved me money, time, and trouble :(
 

gwooding

I'm New Here
Oct 2, 2014
18
20
Johannesburg - South Africa
I put in a service request with CPS, something I have never done before. I can't in good conscience sell this. I think there's something wrong with it. There's no way people could rant and rave about the 70-200 L IS mk. II and have it perform this poorly. I wish I realized it was this soft before I bought it - would have saved me money, time, and trouble :(
I think that is your best course of action. I believe your second experiment sufficiently eliminates all options except the lens (I doubt although am not 100% sure that an adapter could work well on one and badly on another lens).

Best of luck getting the lens looked at by CPS, please do update us with how it goes.
 
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navastronia

EOS RP + 5D Classic
Aug 31, 2018
421
482
Update: Sold back to the store I bought it from, for the same price I bought it for. OK, then! If they re-sell it and the next owner is unhappy with the IQ, that person will then be able to deal with the store directly, which seems ethically fine to me. Thanks for your comments - I'm glad to done with it. Onward with primes! :)
 
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