Let me start by saying that I have owned all the iterations of the L series 70-200mm Canon zooms. They are all without exception, excellent lenses – even the much more affordable f4 versions.
The newest version, the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM, is by far the best telephoto zoom lens I have ever used. It compares well against the famous (& brilliant) primes – ie 85mm f1.2, 135mm f2, 200mm f2, of which I own copies. This lens is so good that I am retiring one of my all time favourite lenses, the 135mm f2L (I’ve run out of room in my camera bag).
There are 4 stops of stabilisation. This is invaluable for shooting in churches and wedding receptions. This lens paired with a highly light sensitive 1D Mark iv, allows you to take shots that have been previously impossible to take.
Sharpness across the frame is exceptional and the bokeh is so, so smooth. Focus tracking of subjects is peerless from any lens I have used before.
As you can probably tell, I love and adore this lens and it’s sharpness and telephoto compression make it a must carry for every shoot once out of confined spaces.
Don’t get me wrong, it won’t act as the only lens used within it’s focal length range, but you will need a specific application to change this marvelous lens off the camera. There are still plenty of opportunities to snap on an 85mm f1.2L mark 11 – arguably the best lens you can get for a Canon body. (not withstanding the 200mm f2L)
If you are a Canon shooter and can afford the relatively big dollars, you will forget the money long before the pleasure this lens brings to your photography – so go get one.