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Lens review

Canon EF 16-35 mm f/2.8L III USM

4 December 2016
Szymon Starczewski

11. Summary


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Pros:
  • solid casing,
  • excellent image quality in the frame centre,
  • very good image quality on the edge of the APS-C sensor,
  • good image quality on the edge of full frame,
  • imperceptible longitudinal chromatic aberration,
  • lack of serious problems with lateral chromatic aberration,
  • moderate spherical aberration,
  • better distortion correction than in the case of the rivals,
  • quite nice appearance of out-of-focus areas for those parameters,
  • fast, silent and accurate autofocus.

Cons:

  • a bit too high coma for the longer end of focal range,
  • monstrous vignetting on full frame.

After testing this lens you would want to shout ‘finally!’. It took three versions of the 16-35 mm f/2.8 lens in order to get the proof Canon is able to design such an instrument. After two previous, not completely satisfying versions you get a lens which generates very sharp images in the frame centre but also provides very high image quality on the edge of the APS-C sensor and on the edge of full frame. None of the rival products managed to perform so well. Paradoxically a very well-done f/4 brother of the lens tested here might become also its biggest rival – it is not only optically excellent but also it comes with an optical stabilization unit and its price is over two times lower. The owners of Canon reflex cameras are in a very comfortable situation because they are spoilt for choice.