I.S.(VR) worth the extra dough???


No longer a newbie, moving up!
Jul 2, 2007
Reaction score
Washington DC
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
i finally saved enough money for a 70-200 2.8.
there's one on Craigs list for $850 WITHOUT IS.
WITH IS they seem to be around $1,500.

thats a big difference. i love to hear some opinions...
First things that strikes me is that the difference in price should not be nearly double!
There is an increase in cost, but not by that much - is the $1500 price for new or second hand? If it is is the $850 a very very very low price - if it is might be worth making doubly sure your dealing with a legit offer

As for IS (or VR cor nikon or OS for sigma) I consider it worth the additional cost of a lens for that feature - especailly on a lens like the 70-200mm f2.8 which can be easily handheld (on longer lenses like the 600mm IS is a bit debatable as your not likley to handhold that lens much - though its good for its panning feature on a tripod).
If your handhold the lens - or plan to - then its a good investment - even for things like sports or wildlife there are times when the action slows right down, or when your in poor light - and its those times when you can cut back on your shutter speed, that you want the IS in your setup so that you don't get blur from your own holding of the lens.
It won't do a thing for subject motion blur if your shutter speed is too slow, but it really helps to counter your hands (even if they are not shaking). At the end of a long day or on a cold day you might be shaking more than normal anyway so its got a use then.
Sure you might not use it all the time - but those times you do it will really count.
i really dont think IS is worth paying almost double the price. it helps, but i would only spend it if i already had all the equipment i needed and REALLY wanted to have the best lenses.

the way i work is to buy all crappy equipment, get used to using it all right, then when i got all my equpiment, upgrade to mid-grade equipment for everything, then upgrade to top of the line stuff. currently i am in the middle of upgrading from crap to mid-grade stuff.
I have found I can keep my hand reletivly still enough to shoot at 600mm and keep my hand still enough for a shake free shot. (then again, it was bright sun and I was using 1/2000 second shutter speed.....)

I have reletively steady hands, and I feel paying almost double for something I really dont need is nescessary.

If you have shaky hands, by all means get the IS lens, if you can keep it still, then save yourself the moolah and get whatever floats yer boat, wether its a new lens, a new body, some reflectors, filters, whatever.
yeah, if you're shooting faster than 1/100, then u should be ok without IS, but this usually only happens if u have a very wide aperture, or u have a lot of light to work with, like a sunny day. otherwise you will need a tripod or IS. a tripod takes longer to set up, but is much cheaper. haha.
I do dearly love the VR on my Nikon 18-200 -- but I shoot in dim settings fairly often (deep forest, under clouds, etc.). It has been a huge help, but the cost difference is pretty crazy. You may want to look around more to see if the cost difference really is that big in other locations.
i think the price of the lens without IS on Craig's list is priced to sell.
on Amazon they're going for new - almost $1,200, used - starting at $999.

but still, it's like $500 more for IS.

i have the 17-55 'IS' for inside stuff and quite frankly in "low light" situations i wind up setting it around f/8 - 1/200 & bouncing flash.
even @ 2.8 and 1600 ISO, i'm surprised at how much light is required for hand held shots.. even with IS.
Depends on what you will shoot.

I have no issues at all using my 80-200 f/2.8 + 1.4x TC shooting racing events or portraits. At night time it's on a tripod anyway.

I don't shoot indoor events though. In that case I would want some kind of VR, but then also don't forget that VR only stops shaking and not motion. I have used the 70-200 f/2.8 VR. I don't really miss that feature on my lens.
On a 70-200, it could be benificial. I like it on mine. If it prevented me from having a 70-200 2.8 because its so pricey, I would not hesitate to get a non-IS version for cheap.....especially if the price is rediculously low.
i have the IS on my lens. I payed $1475 also from craigslist. also tske into account that the IS version is about $1700 new plus tax and thats almost $1900, you have a $400 difference right there. imagine you are shooting at 1/60 f/2.8 at 200mm in an indoor event. the IS will greatley help with the shake. i tried this out at the place I work at. First I took a shot with IS and no hand shake visible. turned off IS and there was blur. so in my opinion I say go for the IS version. Remember that this is one of canons most popular lenses and L glass doesn't lose value to fast so even if you buy it for $1500 and when you decide to sell it you can get $1400 easily, if not even more than what you payed.

just my 2 cents.

Most reactions