Weather sealing - front filter needed? - the ultimate post

Started Apr 12, 2011 | Discussions
maiaibing
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Weather sealing - front filter needed? - the ultimate post
Apr 12, 2011

"Ultimate" is a big word, but at least this is a very good try at getting to grips once and for all on how Canon lens weather sealing works.

The question is: do your non-white weather sealed L series lenses need a front filter to be rain and dust sealed?

The short answer is: a hand full do, the rest do not.

Long version:

I had a discussion in another thread where I claimed that Canon's non-white weather sealed L series lenses needed a front filter to be rain and dust sealed. These lenses are:

EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM
EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM +needs front filter
EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM +needs front filter
EF 17-40mm f/4L USM +needs front filter
EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM
EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM
EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro
EF 50mm 1.2L USM +needs front filter
EF 85mm 1.2L II USM
EF 24mm 1.4L II USM

Someone disagreed (someone always does) and asked Canon, USA, and got the following reply:

"Only our white "L" Series lenses are weather sealed. None of our weather sealed lenses need a filter to be weather sealed."

Needless to say my jaw dropped in disbelief, as I knew this was wrong. However, I also now that Canon's info on this is sparse and difficult to understand, so I decided to get things right once and for all, so I replied:

"I'll take the opportunity to pose the same question to Canon, Japan, and see what they say... "

And what did Canon, Japan say? Well, they actually also did not get it right the first time I asked (but at least it was ALMOST right). But to spare you the details here are the hard facts in translation:

"The water and dust proof mechanism is explained in the below URL:
http://cweb.canon.jp/ef/technology/eflens-technology.html#tecProof

We do have some water and dust proof Lens, but to enhance the proof, it needs to be used together with water and dust proof camera.

Also, for some Lenses we ask customers to put filters to prevent water coming in from the front part.

These are the Lenses we ask to have filters on:
・EF16-35mm F2.8L USM 
・EF16-35mm F2.8L II USM 
・EF17-40mm F4L USM

For details, please refer to the below URL:

◆EF16-35mm F2.8L II USM 特長
http://cweb.canon.jp/ef/lineup/wide-zoom/ef16-35-f28lii/features.html

◆EF17-40mm F4L USM 特長
http://cweb.canon.jp/ef/lineup/wide-zoom/ef17-40-f4l/features.html "

As I knew that this was not quite right I wrote to them again:

"I am sorry for our mistake.
We have forgotten to mention EF 50mm F1.2L USM.
As you mentioned, this also needs a filter on the lens."

So for these lenses you need a front filter for the lens to be fully rain and dust sealed (I also noted this on the list above for a quick full reference):

  • EF16-35mm F2.8L USM

  • EF16-35mm F2.8L II USM

  • EF17-40mm F4L USM

  • EF 50mm F1.2L USM

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. Canon 5Dii and below need not apply.

Is this then the ultimate truth?

I really hope so, but I'd be lying if I did not admit that to me the front of the 50L and 85L II are such lookalikes that I almost wrote to Canon, Japan a third time...

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maiaibing
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Edit to my post regarding bodies that can be used
In reply to maiaibing, Apr 12, 2011

maiaibing wrote:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. Canon 5Dii and below need not apply.

My edit missed this, which should read:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Canon has a cryptic sentence on the 5Dii and 7D which I am unsure of.

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AOKH
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Re: Edit to my post regarding bodies that can be used
In reply to maiaibing, Apr 12, 2011

Thanks for taking the time to research this. I find it amazing that there is no clarity on this from Canon! Regards

maiaibing wrote:

maiaibing wrote:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. Canon 5Dii and below need not apply.

My edit missed this, which should read:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Canon has a cryptic sentence on the 5Dii and 7D which I am unsure of.

-- hide signature --

Regards. Anders

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Steve Balcombe
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Re: Edit to my post regarding bodies that can be used
In reply to maiaibing, Apr 12, 2011

maiaibing wrote:

maiaibing wrote:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. Canon 5Dii and below need not apply.

My edit missed this, which should read:

And remember: The seal at the lens mounts will only work with a select few professional Canon bodies. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Canon has a cryptic sentence on the 5Dii and 7D which I am unsure of.

This is the clearest statement I've been able to find:

"The magnesium alloy body offers weather sealing equivalent to the acclaimed EOS-1N"

From http://www.canon.co.uk/For_Home/Product_Finder/Cameras/Digital_SLR/EOS_7D/

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Eugene Powers
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I think most of it is misleading....
In reply to maiaibing, Apr 12, 2011

First of all non of the lenses are water-proof. Water resistant maybe.

Second, someone said 17-40mm does not have rear gasket so why would it be water resistant. Unless it does have gasket in the back.

Both 5D2 and 7D are water resistant just not as good as 1D series with 7D being better than 5D2.

And finally, unless lens has front rubber gasket or filter has it there is no way filter will stop water from entering. I get dust under the filters all the time. Very little of it but still getting through.
--
Eugene

The only time a smaller sensor with the same pixel count is superior to a larger sensor (aka higher pixel density) is when you are focal-length limited.

Quote by Lee Jay

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Andrew_WOT
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Re: I think most of it is misleading....
In reply to Eugene Powers, Apr 12, 2011

Not sure who was that someone, but he was definitely misinformed as 17-40 does have rubber gasket on the back of the lens.

Eugene Powers wrote:

First of all non of the lenses are water-proof. Water resistant maybe.

Second, someone said 17-40mm does not have rear gasket so why would it be water resistant. Unless it does have gasket in the back.

Both 5D2 and 7D are water resistant just not as good as 1D series with 7D being better than 5D2.

And finally, unless lens has front rubber gasket or filter has it there is no way filter will stop water from entering. I get dust under the filters all the time. Very little of it but still getting through.
--
Eugene

The only time a smaller sensor with the same pixel count is superior to a larger sensor (aka higher pixel density) is when you are focal-length limited.

Quote by Lee Jay

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Eugene Powers
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Re: I think most of it is misleading....
In reply to Andrew_WOT, Apr 12, 2011

Good. In this case it is water resistant.
--
Eugene

The only time a smaller sensor with the same pixel count is superior to a larger sensor (aka higher pixel density) is when you are focal-length limited.

Quote by Lee Jay

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maiaibing
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Re: I think most of it is misleading....
In reply to Eugene Powers, Apr 13, 2011

This info is as accurate you will be able to get.

Eugene Powers wrote:

First of all non of the lenses are water-proof. Water resistant maybe.

I think you missed the word "translation." You can have the Japanese original if you are interested.

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