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Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM Lens Review

Canon Ultra Wide Angle Zoom Lens

Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM Lens Review Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM Lens Review

Rating Summary for the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM Lens
Construction:
95/100
Price Rating:
85/100
Image Quality:
90/100
Overall Score:
90/100
This is an "A-" Quality Lens


Lens Tech Specs

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture:

16-35mm f/2.8
Lens Construction:
16 elements in 12 groups
Diagonal Angle of View: 108°10'-63°
Focus Adjustment: AF with full-time manual
Closest Focusing Distance: 0.92 ft./0.28m
Filter Size: 82mm, P=0.75mm/1 filter
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight 3.5 in. x 4.4 in./88.5mm x 111.6mm, 640g

 

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is the faster of the two Ultra-Wide Canon L-Series lenses in the retail world. The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens offers high quality images and a wider aperture at quite a pretty penny..

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is an EF mount which means you can use it on 35mm bodies which have smaller sensors (like the Canon 30D and Canon 20D) as well as full frame sensor 35mm bodies (like the Canon 5D and Canon 1Ds Mark II). The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is fairly wide, but on most common digital bodies like the Canon 350D, 20D and 30D bearing the 1.6x crop this lens is more of a 25.6-56mm which is still very wide for a 1.6x crop body and definitely a must for tight quarters if you require the Canon L glass.

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens can easily be compared to the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens which is a full stop slower than this lens and about half the price. I guess at double the price you are able to get twice as much light, which for some is an absolute must.

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens weighs in at a very reasonable 475g and is slightly larger than the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens. The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is also sealed for harsh conditions, so you donít have to worry too much about the weather making itís way inside the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens.

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens build quality is superb, which is to be expected as it is a Canon L-Series lens. The zoom and controls are just about as smooth as can be, in-fact it is almost perfect.

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is also equipped with full-time manual focusing, which allows you to focus manually even when the autofocus mode is turned on. You simply set the camera to ONE SHOT AF mode and then press the shutter button down halfway. While you have the shutter button down halfway you may turn the focus ring to focus manually. This function is standard on all the Canon L-series lenses which prevents the user from stripping his focus rings while trying to focus manually in the AF (autofocus) mode.

The subject distance scale comes standard on the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens, which I wish was present on every Canon lens. This allows you to gauge (to a degree) how close you are to the subject you are shooting.

You might consider purchasing a better lens hood for the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens. The lens hood that the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens comes standard with is a pedal shaped hood, specifically the EW-83E and it is often times not sufficient for certain situations. You might look into purchasing the Canon EW-83D, which will fit the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens just fine and give you a bit more cover from the unwanted light.

The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens comes standard with the powerful ring type USM (Ultrasonic Motor) drive which enables you to have lightning fast focusing, with a silent motor so you donít scare away the wildlife. It also helps to be able to focus quickly and accurately when you donít think conditions will permit.

I suppose you want to know how the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens compares to the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens as far as image quality and sharpness are concerned. The Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens image sharpness is exactly the same as itís competitors the Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM lens. I found that for the most part the overall image quality when compared side by side was identical. The only noticeable difference between the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens and the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is that the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens lets in twice as much light for twice the price. The level of distortion on both lenses on the super wide could have been a bit better, but I would suggest going with a prime to remedy this problem. All-in-all the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM lens is an amazing lens for a relatively affordable price. I think you will be more than happy with this addition to your lens collection.

Lens MTF Charts
Canon EF 17-40mm f/4 USM lens mtf charts Canon EF 17-40mm mtf chart