Review of the 200mm 2.0 lens
Have you heard photographers talking about that magic 200mm 2.0 lens? It sounds like a dream lens, and the images you might have seen people post using this lens look like a fine work of art.
Recently, I had the opportunity to test out the Canon 200mm 2.0. (Yes! I was excited!)
And I must say right away, it was pretty awesome. I got a lot of great photos, got a lot of looks and made lots of conversations with almost everyone I happened to come across that saw me holding it- BUT it wasn’t all unicorns and sparkles.
Let me give you the truthful rundown of this lens.
(200mm @ f/2 SS1/1250 ISO100 Painted sky in Photoshop)
There is nothing to argue about when it comes to the quality of this lens. The lens feels incredibly sturdy and well crafted. Plus the images that it can help you create are fantastic.
With that said though, the lens itself will not give you beautiful, magical images. You definitely still have to have a creative vision and understand how to compose your subject and set your settings to use this lens to its full potential.
The images came out super sharp- most of the time. When I first started playing around with the 200mm, it was much heavier than expected. My hands were not as stable, I was shaky + there were a few extra switches for image stabilization on the side that I wasn’t clear on a first.
To get the awesome sharpness that this lens delivers, you have to use it a little differently, concentrating on keeping it still and playing around with the stabilization features as well.
And I’m not talking about the look of your photos. You will get looks from everyone that sees you. I have never had so many people approach me and start up conversation about photography, ask questions, and want to watch me shoot. I kinda felt like a celebrity everywhere I went.
So while this may not be an actual selling point to the lens itself, it may give you the opportunity to meet new photographers and people you otherwise wouldn’t have.
(Pull Back shot of where all photos here were taken)
This by far is the biggest downfall with the lens. At almost $6K, I have a hard time justifying that purchase. (I mean, really, you could buy a used car for that amount!) Plus for a fraction of the price, I still really love the results I get from the 135mm 2.0 lens and think the quality is incredibly similar.
(200mm @f/2 ss 1/2000 ISO100? Painted sky in Photoshop)
Wow, this lens is a beast. I knew it was big, but didn’t realize it was THAT big. Plus throw on that lens hood and it was like I was carrying around a toddler. It was very different for me at first, thought after some time, I have to be honest I did get to use to it.
This lens would be difficult if your subjects were running toddlers or if you were in constant motion while shooting. And also, because I hike and move around a lot during family sessions, I’m not completely sure it would be the best lens to use for families either.
This lens was great when working with one person (that could follow direction) Older kids, maternity models, engagement photos or high school seniors, I think would be ideal subjects with this lens.
This thing was hard to carry around! Not only was it heavy, but it needed it’s own lens bag. Transporting it was a bit of a hassle and if it became part of your collection, you’d most likely have to upgrade your camera bag too.
Would I take this lens? Sure, if someone were to gift it to me, or if I could find a killer deal on a used one, I would take it in a heartbeat. Will I buy it for $6,000? Nope. Not now at least. I may rent it in the future, but I just couldn’t justify the price tag.
When I put my 135mm 2.0 lens back on my camera, it felt a little bit like a toy and I was nervous I was going to be disappointed in the quality since I had worked with the 200mm for so long. But no, the 135mm ( though toy-like feeling now) still did not disappoint and I?m just as impressed with the quality it offers.
Should YOU get the 200mm 2.0? Sure. If you have the money to spend on it, go for it! HOWEVER, if you are new to photography, don’t know how to confidently use your camera or manual mode and still struggle a bit with finding your style and creativity- DO NOT think this lens will magically make your images look perfect and professional.
This lens is definitely a work of art on it’s own.
If YOU do decide to try this lens out for yourself (of maybe you already have it!) I’d love to see what you create with it! Tag me on IG @cozyclicks or send me a message so I can see your work!