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Lens review

2014-07-22
 

Canon EF 16-35 mm f/4L IS USM

1. Introduction

The Canon company haven’t had much luck with ultra-wide angle lenses. The EF 17–40 f/4.0L USM, an already elderly model, has one saving grace – a good price for an L-series instrument- but its optical properties could be hardly called outstanding.

A lot was expected after the launch of the EF 16–35 mm f/2.8L II USM in 2007 but, in my humble opinion, it was a flop, one of the most overestimated lenses in the whole Canon line-up. I’ve had an opportunity to use as many as four different 16-35 lenses and every single time their image quality on the edge of the frame, even after a significant stopping down, was simply ludicrously bad, especially if you reminded yourself of the amount of money you had to pay for that device. The lens was lucky in a sense – when we tested it we didn’t have a full frame camera in our editorial office and the APS-C sensor didn’t show all its weaknesses in full.

The optical weakness of the 16–35 mm f/2.8L model and the advanced age of the 17-40 f/4.0L suggested that Canon might make a move in that segment pretty soon. Indeed in May 2014 the next lens, the EF 16-35 mm f/4.0L IS USM was launched on the market. Courtesy of the Canon Poland we managed to obtain one specimen very quickly and now we are able to present the results of its optical and mechanical performance test – enjoy!

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You are also invited to get acquainted with our test procedure, described in the article "How do we test lenses?" If you feel it’s still not enough, please go to our FAQ section where you can find some further explanation.

Canon EF 16-35 mm f/4L IS USM - Introduction

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