Lens: Canon EF 80-200mm ƒ/2.8 L (Photography Museum)

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Canon EF 80-200mm ƒ/2.8 L

I could write volumes about this very special lens, but instead, I am going to grab my camera and go shoot with it.

Okay, I am back.

Every time I use this lens I am in awe. It predates USM and is a very slow focusing lens by todays standards. It lacks optical image stabilization. It is not white. (It’s nickname, according to the internet, is “magic drainpipe”.)

But the images it produces are, to me, incomparable. I was trying to describe them to my wife and said something like “colours are rendered in the most amazing way…the images are always warm, not in terms of colour temperature, but in terms of emotion.”

German has an excellent word for this sensation—Gemütlichkeit.

I’ve had an almost 30 year relationship with this lens, having bought it several years after its 1989 introduction. It was my first professional lens and the most expensive thing I owned until I bought a Ford F150 in 2000. Come to think of it, the Canon EF 80-200mm ƒ/2.8 L is analogous to my truck (which is still going strong 20 years later): bulky, built tough, practical.



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