Canon EF 28-70mm f/3.5-4.5 II - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Canon EOS (APS-C)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published November 2005

Special thanks to Frank Kirchner for providing this lens!


Some of you may probably ask the question why the heck I´m testing the EF 28-70mm f/3.5-4.5 II. Well, it is indeed an ancient lens from the early days of the EOS system. During its time the lens received some outstanding magazine test results so it´s surely interesting to have a deeper look how this oldie performs on a DSLR. In an APS-C DSLR scope its field-of-view is equivalent to 45-112mm on full frame camera which is unfortunately not all that hot anymore.

The optical design of the lens consists of 10 elements in 9 groups including one molded aspherical element. The aperture mechanism features 5 blades. With a min. focus distance of 0.39m the max. object magnification is about 1:5 at 70mm. The lens is fairly compact and light weight with a size of 70x76mm and a weight of just 285g. The filter size is 52mm.

Mechanically the lens isn´t overly impressive. The zoom mechanism is rather stiff and the focus ring operation feels rather scratchy which is typical for many Canon lenses of that era. The quality of the plastic is quite decent though. Unfortunately using a polarizer isn´t really an option because of a rotating front element in combination with a front element of the inner lens tube that retracts below the front portion of the outer shell at certain zoom positions. The AF works pretty fast on this lens despite of its rather aged conventional micro motor (Arc-form drive).

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