CES 2010: Canon Quietly Announces New EF 70-200mm f/2.8L Lens with IS II Technology



Jan 5, 2010
By Dan Havlik, PDN's Technology Specialist

Canon 70-200

Amidst a sea of new consumer camera, camcorder, printer and calculator releases this morning, Canon quietly announced a new pro lens had entered its lineup: the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens.

Considering that this focal range is one of the most popular in Canon's lineup and that the new lens features IS (Image Stabilizer) II technology, it was curious that Canon chose not to pre-disclose information about the lens to PDN Gear Guide. (On the other hand, we got pre-briefed on all the consumer products Canon announced this morning.)

The soft announcement of the new 70-200mm f/2.8 IS II today is also odd considering Canon has chosen not to attend the PMA trade show in Anaheim, CA next month which is the typical venue for announcing new pro camera gear. The company will be participating in CES this week however which draws mainly consumer electronics retailers.

On paper, the new lens could be very appealing to anyone looking to upgrade their 70-200mm, which is a workhorse lens for many pros.

There was no explanation from Canon on how the second generation Image Stabilizer (IS II) in the new lens relates to its Hybrid Image Stabilizer (IS), a new optical image stabilization technology Canon announced it was developing last summer. The Hybrid Image Stabilizer is designed to compensate for both angle camera shake and shift camera shake.

The new lens is scheduled to ship in April. Pricing is still to be determined. More info in the press release below.


PRESS RELEASE

Canon’s New EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM Incorporates Advanced Lens Elements and Enhanced Durability for High-Speed Autofocus and High-Performance Optical Image Stabilization
 
LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., January 5, 2010 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, introduces the new EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens. Arguably the most popular focal range in Canon’s telephoto arsenal and a staple lens for any professional photographer, the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens provides the focal length, maximum aperture and zoom power for capturing everything from fast-action sports to studio portraits.

Built for the professional, the body structure of the new EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens has been enhanced to provide better durability and strength without a significant increase in weight.

Canon has improved optical performance on the new EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens by redesigning the internal elements, incorporating a fluorite element and a fifth UD element. The use of the fluorite element and five UD elements helps to minimize secondary chromatic aberrations and produce better image quality with improved contrast and resolution through the entire zoom range; the end result is an optically precise lens worthy of becoming the leader of Canon’s L-series lenses.
 
Along with its redesigned optical elements, the new lens design features improved AF speed due to a new focusing algorithm and has reduced the minimum focusing distance to 3.9 feet (1.2 meters) through the entire zoom range, allowing photographers to capture tighter portraiture shots in a small studio space.

The previous lens model’s minimum focusing distance was 4.6 feet (1.4 meters), whereas now photographers can stand nearly 8 inches closer to their subject and achieve sharp focus and tight crops. Canon has also enhanced the Image Stabilization allowing it to compensate for shutter speeds up to four steps slower than 1/focal length, a one step improvement over the previous lens model.
 
“Canon’s core has always been our optics, and we are constantly challenging ourselves to produce better and more advanced optical systems for our customers. The new EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens incorporates the best advancements in Canon lens technology from the past few years and packages it into what we believe will be the most popular lens for professionals and advanced photographers,” stated Yuichi Ishizuka, senior vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A.
 
The enhanced magnesium alloy barrel design of the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens features added strength with a minimal 20-gram increase in weight compared with the previous model (1490g vs. 1470g) and retains Canon’s protective seals and fittings providing dust and water resistance for those photographers working in adverse conditions. A new bayonet mount on the front of the lens includes a locking mechanism to ensure the supplied lens hood remains securely in place. Other noticeable improvements include a wider focusing ring, and sleeker design by reducing the thickness of any protruding elements such as the switch panel. The new lens is also compatible with Canon’s existing EF1.4X II and EF2X II Extenders as well as EF Extension Tubes and the 77mm Close-Up Lens 500D.
 
Pricing and Availability
The Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens is supplied with a detachable tripod collar, a reversible bayonet mount lens hood and a lens pouch. The new lens is scheduled to be delivered to U.S. dealers in April, price to be determined.






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