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Lens review

Canon EF 24 mm f/2.8 IS USM

17 October 2012
Szymon Starczewski

6. Distortion

Significantly lower distortion is an advantage of prime lenses over the zooms. It’s worth reminding here that zoom lenses which focal length starting from 24 mm at the widest angle can have distortion amounting to about –2% on the smaller detector and -4% or even –5% on full frame. Compared to that the results of the Canon EF 24 mm f/2.8 IS USM look splendid. On the APS-C sensor we notice very slight “barrel” of -1.23% which increases a bit to –1.91% when you pass to full frame.

Such a small difference between full frame and the APS-C sensor results is a bit puzzling though - most likely a small level of moustache distortion might be responsible for that. It seems on the edge of full frame you can notice a bit of bending of straight lines in the direction opposite to that observed near the frame centre.

It’s also worth noticing that the distortion level of the tested lens, although lower than that of the „zooms”, is higher than that of more advanced constructions. For example the Canon EF 24 mm f/1.4L II USM on full frame shows the distortion reaching just –1.26% so practically the same as the 2.8/24 model features on the APS-C sensor.

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50D, 24 mm
Canon EF 24 mm f/2.8 IS USM - Distortion
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Canon EF 24 mm f/2.8 IS USM - Distortion