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Canon renews full-frame lenses with 24-70mm F2.8 II and stabilized wide-angle primes

By dpreview staff on Feb 7, 2012 at 05:00 GMT

Canon has released three EF lenses, including an updated 24-70mm F2.8 II USM. The latest version features what is promised to be a more durable body, despite being a little smaller. In addition to this high-end full-frame standard zoom, there are completely redesigned semi-fast 24mm  and 28mm F2.8 primes, both of which feature USM focus motors and image stabilization.

Ultimately, the most interesting thing about these launches is the fact that Canon feels the need to update various full-frame lenses, almost as if something likely to test the quality of its existing versions was in the offing.

The wide-angle lenses update two of Canon's oldest primes: both the EF 28mm F2.8 and 24mm F2.8 date back to the late 1980s. The new variants add Canon's latest 4-stop IS and ring-type USM (complete with full-time manual focus), and look like they should be perfectly nice lenses. We're just not entirely sure who they're for; APS-C users have the 17-55mm F2.8 IS USM, and full frame users are more likely to be using the company's L series optics. It's also a little unusual to see stabilization added to lenses this wide but that's the decision Canon has made.

Jump to:


Press Release:

Class-leading performance, unrivalled flexibility – Canon launches three new lenses

London, UK, 7th February 2012 – Canon today adds to its world-famous EF lens series with the launch of three new lenses for photography professionals and enthusiasts. The new EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM professional zoom lens is an update to the popular EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM, while the new EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM and EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM are the world's first1 wide-angle prime lenses to feature optical Image Stabilizer (IS) technology. All three provide the highest levels of performance for modern digital photographers, combining premium image quality with durable, userfriendly designs.

EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM: the ultra-high performance standard zoom

The new EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM features completely redesigned optics to provide outstanding clarity, image quality and durability. A compact design makes it ideal for carrying on every shoot, and a range of optical enhancements provide improved performance – capturing greater detail across the frame while reducing distortion throughout the entire zoom range, particularly at the maximum 70mm focal length.

With a redesigned optical system that includes two Ultra-low Dispersion (UD) and one Super UD aspheric elements to minimise chromatic aberration and colour blurring, the lens delivers consistently sharp, high-contrast images. Each lens element also features Canon's optimised Super Spectra coatings to reduce ghosting and flare and ensure excellent colour balance. Additionally, a fluorine coating minimises the amount of dust, dirt and fingerprints that adhere to the front and rear of the lens, helping to maintain superior image quality.

The EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM also enables photographers to capture their subjects up close, with a minimum focusing distance of 0.38m at all focal lengths throughout the zoom range. A ring-type Ultrasonic Motor (USM) works in combination with a highperformance CPU and advanced AF algorithms to ensure accurate, silent and ultraresponsive autofocus. For those who prefer to maintain full control in every shot, fulltime manual focusing allows photographers to precisely tweak or alter the focus of their shot at any time, even when AF is engaged.

Distinguished L-series design

The EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM is the latest lens from the elite L-series to offer Canon's high-grade and user-focused design enhancements. The mechanical structure of the lens has been improved to offer enhanced zoom durability and greater shake and shock resistance within the lens barrel. The size of the lens has also been reduced by 10mm compared to the previous model, providing enhanced portability and greater convenience in everyday use. A new Zoom Lock lever also enables photographers to lock the zoom position at the extreme wide end to prevent damage to the lens in transit, while a water and dustproof construction2 enables users to continue shooting in harsh conditions.

Introducing the world's first wide-angle primes with IS

Canon today also launches the new EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM and EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM – the world's first 24mm and 28mm fixed wide-angle lenses to feature optical IS technology. Ideal for landscape and reportage, both lenses offer outstanding flexibility allowing photographers to shoot an even broader range of scenes and subjects – combining fast apertures with IS to enable sharp results when shooting handheld, even in low light conditions.

Offering an advantage of up to 4-stops over lenses without IS, both lenses are ideal for capturing more of the scene thanks to their wider focal lengths. Both feature a wide f/2.8 aperture, allowing photographers to explore shallow depth of field, or to shoot in lower-light conditions. Wide apertures and IS technology also make each lens ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects, while Canon's advanced IS technology is able to detect intentional panning movement and automatically switch from Normal IS mode to Panning IS mode – helping users to capture movement with greater accuracy.

Silent, high-speed AF performance is provided by the inclusion of a ring-type USM and additional features including optimized AF control. Full-time manual focusing also ensures adjustments can be made even when AF is engaged, while a minimum focusing distance of 0.20m (EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM) and 0.23m (EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM) allows photographers to get even closer to smaller or more detailed subjects.

Designed to perform

Both the EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM and EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM feature redesigned optics to improve image quality and reduce the need for post-production. An aspherical glass moulded (GMo) lens element is incorporated to correct aberration throughout the optical system, while Canon's optimised Super Spectra Coatings reduce ghosting and flare for stand-out image quality. Externally, both models also boast a number of design similarities with Canon's professional L-series lenses, with a similar coating on the barrel and a similar design on the focus ring. A distance scale is also included to assist with landscape photography, while the compact design makes these lenses an unobtrusive addition to any kit bag.

1 According to Canon research as of February 2012
2 Waterproof construction around the lens mount, switch panel, zoom ring, focusing ring and zoom lock.
Weatherproof when used with weatherproof EOS bodies.

Additional images

Canon EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM Canon EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM
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Comments

Total comments: 268
123
raizans
By raizans (Feb 7, 2012)

i've got my fingers crossed that canon will come out with two more image stabilized primes:

35/2
50/1.4

that would be awesome.

2 upvotes
NoFunBen
By NoFunBen (Feb 7, 2012)

a stabilized fast 50mm would be very useful

4 upvotes
M Jesper
By M Jesper (Feb 7, 2012)

Indeed it would. And add a 35/1.8 for APS-C to that for good measure.

2 upvotes
simephoto
By simephoto (Feb 7, 2012)

They just want us to change ours two or three years old 24-70 a put 2000 us dollars on our credit card.That's crazy!! canon please don't touch the 35 f2 just put an ultrasonic motor .
This lens is sharper then my summricon! even if you are always worry that will brake in your hands.
Ok they put out a new camera.......canon will put out a better one.just wait.not only ,i think canon is going more into the video market...in the future a traditional camera would be a video camera and photo camera. canon already dir that! but it costs 10.000 us dollars. canon is ahead of nikon.now even in quality on high sensivity. Canon will put out a full frame with the same pixel count and superior video performance....unfortunately in a cheaper body.........

0 upvotes
lifeispixels
By lifeispixels (Feb 7, 2012)

Surprised to see Canon's decision to make 24mm and 28mm prime with IS too. Perhaps they intended for those who would mount these lens on cropped sensors?

1 upvote
Viggo
By Viggo (Feb 7, 2012)

Haven't anyone thought of this feature for video?!? It's perfect to have small light primes with IS for just that. And also for journalists who want to create better images like when dragging the shutter. Auto-pan mode is excellent!

3 upvotes
run168
By run168 (Feb 7, 2012)

What interests me for those prime are the minimum focus distance (0.2m for 24mm). Still no match for the Zeiss, but if the price is right...

Comment edited 21 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
Daniel Yee
By Daniel Yee (Feb 7, 2012)

Wow do checkout the MTF charts for 24-70L II (link: http://usa.canon.com/cusa/consumer/products/cameras/ef_lens_lineup/ef_24_70mm_f_2_8l_ii_usm)

Seems like a major upgrade from v1

2 upvotes
Peak25500
By Peak25500 (Feb 7, 2012)

Maybe those primes are aimed at video market... It's sure IS would have been better on the 24-70 II, but I think Canon didn't do that without thoughts...

7 upvotes
Dafffid
By Dafffid (Feb 7, 2012)

Although I'm one of the ones dissatisfied, I think you're spot on with that.

0 upvotes
Peak25500
By Peak25500 (Feb 7, 2012)

For what concerned myself, I'm thinking about switching to FF. I'm waiting for a FF camera from Canon (successor of 5DII or cheaper one). I'm excited by a new 24mm lens but only for IQ. I will use it for concert photography, where low shutter speeds are not useful because of subjects moving quite fast... Even if it has IS, if IQ is correlated with the price, why not...

0 upvotes
wildbild
By wildbild (Feb 7, 2012)

I was hoping for a new 28 prime. but why in the world make the primes IS-lenses, that makes them first of all expensive and adds little value to such short lenses.

1 upvote
MisoL
By MisoL (Feb 7, 2012)

short f/2.8 primes ? who will buy them? If they would be pancake lenses, they will have market. It's just one stop faster than f/4@24mm in 18-135 kit lens.

2 upvotes
mantra
By mantra (Feb 7, 2012)

wow!
i'm was waiting for long for the new 24-70!!

about the 24 and the 28 , i'm curious about the price

i mean with IS will thay cost like L serie?

0 upvotes
swpars
By swpars (Feb 7, 2012)

Interesting. Wonder if the increasing number of stabilized bodies from Sony pushed Canon to stabilize some primes?

0 upvotes
Chris_in_Osaka
By Chris_in_Osaka (Feb 7, 2012)

These 2 primes are kind of expensive here in Japan. Just checked the Yodobashi camera web site. ¥71,400 for the 24mm ($931 USD), ¥67,830 for the 28mm ($885 USD).

0 upvotes
mantra
By mantra (Feb 7, 2012)

yes i see
they will be more expansive in europe sadly
do you know the price of the 24-70 ?
thanks
cheers

0 upvotes
Chris_in_Osaka
By Chris_in_Osaka (Feb 7, 2012)

The 24-70 is listed on Yodobashi's web site at ¥217,350 , or $2,834.83 USD. Ouch.

0 upvotes
candleJack
By candleJack (Feb 7, 2012)

I dare say that's a stupid price. I can't see anybody giving serious consideration to these. For crop you pay a tiny bit more and get 17-55 @ 2.8 and IS.

0 upvotes
Martin Datzinger
By Martin Datzinger (Feb 7, 2012)

Looks like the hood is mounted on the inner, extending barrel. A huge step backwards in durability/ergonomics/flare protection! I hope much better IQ compensates for that.

3 upvotes
Zorz SKG
By Zorz SKG (Feb 7, 2012)

Good point observing that!

The -now- old 24-70 had a peculiar desing, where the front element was extended at the wide end instead of the tele (that all the other non-inner zooms use). The lens hood was mounted on the fixed part of the barrel, and that meant that at 70mm the front element was tucked inside the hood and moved outwards at 24.
That gave the hood better coverage! Now Canon gave up that design...

0 upvotes
Sosua
By Sosua (Feb 7, 2012)

I wonder if they will under design the non L wide angle primes?

Because they should easily eclipse the performance of the 17-40 and 16-35 while being smaller, cheaper and lighter.

17-40 IS on the way?

0 upvotes
anttitapani
By anttitapani (Feb 7, 2012)

Is there going to be 24-70 2.8L II IS later on? Just wondering.

0 upvotes
dgilmour
By dgilmour (Feb 7, 2012)

It would be just 24-70 f/2.8 IS USM (not II)

0 upvotes
Mark Prince
By Mark Prince (Feb 7, 2012)

The list prices for the primes seem very high; not sure what the street prices will be, but the 28mm f2.8 is a $450 price jump (street price vs. list) over the existing 28mm f2.8. I own the 1.8 28mm (quite happy with my copy of it), and it's street price is under $500; the list at $800 for the new 2.8 IS seems quite high.

0 upvotes
Chaitanya S
By Chaitanya S (Feb 7, 2012)

any idea when they will be made available and their expected MSRP?

0 upvotes
EOS20
By EOS20 (Feb 7, 2012)

24-70 f/2.8 L II - $2299! Available In April.
24mm f/2.8 IS USM - $849.99 Available In June.
28 f/2.8 IS USM - $799.99 Available In June.

1 upvote
Chaitanya S
By Chaitanya S (Feb 7, 2012)

thanks.

0 upvotes
dark goob
By dark goob (Feb 7, 2012)

"almost as if something likely to test the quality of its existing versions was in the offing?" You're joking, right? The existing 24-70 is fringey as hell. It has terrible CA. The 5D Mk II easily "tests the quality" and really, that lens looks awful next to Nikon 24-70 or even Olympus 14-35 -- two other full frame lenses. (Get a clue: full frame means the lens is made for the sensor it's used on... full frame does not mean 135 format all the time like you nincompoops keep parroting from Canon's marketing dept.)

Comment edited 21 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
Erriv
By Erriv (Feb 7, 2012)

Actually YOU should stop inventing/changing words to your liking. Full Frame coverage means that the lens will cover a Full Frame sensor, which in todays world, both marketing and otherwise means the 135 format. As opposed to the Crop-format sensors, or APS-C. This naming has been established by two out of three makers or cameras with this sensor size, Canon and Sony. So what the manufacturers choose to call it, you will comply to.

10 upvotes
dougydoug
By dougydoug (Feb 7, 2012)

Erriv is quite correct. Dark Goob may be the first and only person to refer to Four Thirds as "Full Frame".

10 upvotes
Arn
By Arn (Feb 7, 2012)

These image stabilized wide angle primes are interesting, but what I'm really waiting for is a similar re-do for the 35 f/2. It's a nice little lens, with a very useful minimum focusing distance, but it would be absolutely great with USM and IS.

Comment edited 47 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
kenghor
By kenghor (Feb 7, 2012)

Seems that the zoom lens had gone shorter but fatter. 82mm filter size for the 24-70mm!!!

2 upvotes
tommy leong
By tommy leong (Feb 7, 2012)

great
hope this will bring down the prices of 82mm filters
when it reaches mass market :)

2 upvotes
Naveed Akhtar
By Naveed Akhtar (Feb 7, 2012)

No IS but looks lighter ...

and "minimum focusing distance of 0.38m at all focal lengths throughout the zoom range".

Or maybe it is an indication 5d3 got sensor shift IS :))

1 upvote
jenbenn
By jenbenn (Feb 7, 2012)

the 24-70 is great news.What i hated about the old 24-70 was the huge size and weight. I love the newer one's smaller and hopefully also lighter execution. The lack of IS I certainly dont mind, I hardly ever need it in my 24-105.

The 24 and 28 lenses I dont understand. The only reasn to buy them would be their small size. Photographically the existing zooms will do the same thing albeit with a bit more (correctable) distortion. I wish they had improved the 28 1.8 with better optics tough.

1 upvote
Naveed Akhtar
By Naveed Akhtar (Feb 7, 2012)

wide primes are for those who carry 70-200 more often!

1 upvote
candleJack
By candleJack (Feb 7, 2012)

if the 24-70 is over $2000 as reported I can't see how it's good news.

0 upvotes
Naveed Akhtar
By Naveed Akhtar (Feb 7, 2012)

probably IS 24mm is introduced to compensate that .. Its for those people who like to carry 70-200 for portrait, tele etc and want to have a wideangle prime (just in case).

0 upvotes
SLOtographer
By SLOtographer (Feb 7, 2012)

IS for wides is useful for video.

4 upvotes
Zebooka
By Zebooka (Feb 7, 2012)

Duh! I've thought it released 24-70/2.8 IS
Poor canon..

1 upvote
ljmac
By ljmac (Feb 7, 2012)

Huh? They put IS on the wide angle primes (where it is arguably unnecessary), but they don't put it on a zoom going to 70mm? What's the sense in that?

12 upvotes
Sdaniella
By Sdaniella (Feb 7, 2012)

hmmm, no IS... pass...

7 upvotes
Naveed Akhtar
By Naveed Akhtar (Feb 7, 2012)

hmmmm .. get 24mm prime

1 upvote
Naveed Akhtar
By Naveed Akhtar (Feb 7, 2012)

however a small update to the previous one is "minimum focusing distance of 0.38m at all focal lengths throughout the zoom range". Or maybe it is an indication 5d3 got sensor shift IS :))

0 upvotes
oscarvdvelde
By oscarvdvelde (Feb 7, 2012)

Good news! Always longed for image stabilization on my wide angle primes - *if* it indeed helps for sharp 1/15th - 0.3 sec exposures... 4 stops improvement for 1/focal length suggests 0.25-0.5 seconds would be possible handheld. I own the 28mm f/2.8 and it is light and sharp and infinity is a hard stop. Perfect for night shooting. I "upgraded" to a Tokina 16-28mm f/2.8 but sometimes long back to something light & small and better manually focusable. But a bag full of small primes would total a kilogram or so, anyway. I'd like to have a small 16mm f/2.8 as well...

1 upvote
Nich0las
By Nich0las (Feb 7, 2012)

"Ultimately, the most interesting thing about these launches is the fact that Canon feels the need to update various full-frame lenses, almost as if something likely to test the quality of its existing versions was in the offing."

i.e. we have a pre-production 5D Mk III however can't formally announce anything yet due to a NDA

10 upvotes
Jens_G
By Jens_G (Feb 7, 2012)

24/2.8 will be nice on APS (36mm equiv).

3 upvotes
mkln
By mkln (Feb 7, 2012)

yes, but thank god they did it EF and not EF-S! they prolly realized that small lenses are good for FF users.

4 upvotes
openskyline
By openskyline (Feb 7, 2012)

the price for 24-70mm II is $2,299, so expensive for a lens without IS.
I will buy a Tamron 24-70 VC instead. Stupid Canon

http://pdnpulse.com/2012/02/canon-announces-trio-of-pro-lenses-including-new-24-70mm-f2-8l-ii.html#more-3936

6 upvotes
Mtsuoka
By Mtsuoka (Feb 7, 2012)

or perhaps if you choose your main lens just because of the presence of IS then you should stick with your kit lens....

2 upvotes
Jens_G
By Jens_G (Feb 7, 2012)

@Mitsuoka The Tamron wil cost 1/3 to 1/2 of what the Canon costs, and I'm willing to bet IQ is going to be comparable, plus it's got IS.

Waiting for reviews, but so far the new Tammy is the clear winner imho.

1 upvote
BayAreaHair
By BayAreaHair (Feb 27, 2012)

I will just buy a new Canon HD video camera which has a 24-70+ F1.8 L-series IS lens built-in for $2300. For my still shot work I will just get the Tamron 24-70 F2.8. For a little more money I get the best of both worlds.... No way am I paying $2300 for a 24-70 F2.8 II when I already have the Canon 28 1.8, 35 F2.0, 50 1.8 85 1.2L and a Tamron 28-75 F2.8....

0 upvotes
wskb
By wskb (Feb 7, 2012)

Maybe we'll see new 35f2, 50f1.4, 85f1.8 soon as welll...

5 upvotes
Jens_G
By Jens_G (Feb 7, 2012)

EF 35/1.8 USM #want

3 upvotes
Arn
By Arn (Feb 7, 2012)

35 f/2 IS with USM, yes that would do nicely.

2 upvotes
NovemberSun
By NovemberSun (Feb 7, 2012)

There was a poll taken i read somewhere and it said that alot of people didnt use the IS in the 24-70 to begin with. Though I dont own one myself I do not see this as a negative. I own one lens with IS and its never engaged. Every other lens i own does not feature IS and i dont ever miss it. To me the exclusion of the IS feature in the 24-70 would suggest a more affordable price point...or at least a very competitive one. A price point at which I may very well bite...that is if its reasonable.
Cheers!

0 upvotes
mkln
By mkln (Feb 7, 2012)

there seems to be a lot of people saying that "they don't need IS on wide angle" but the truth is that it's always useful.
more reasonable would be to have ditched the IS version because of size/weight. the old 24-70 was already too heavy.

6 upvotes
wskb
By wskb (Feb 7, 2012)

Woh there, intriguing... 24mm and 28mm... random little lenses...

2 upvotes
Ian
By Ian (Feb 7, 2012)

These look like perfect matches for a new mirrorless body just like Pentax's new baby. Compact, IS, not priced too high(?)...

Comment edited 32 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Kfrog
By Kfrog (Feb 7, 2012)

Of course Pentax doesn't need IS in any of their lenses. Nice to see Canon updating these primes.

0 upvotes
mkln
By mkln (Feb 7, 2012)

not going to happen with EF/EF-S mount.

mirrorless = lenses are closer to the sensor.
these are EF so they need to be around 42mm from the sensor = either huge mirrorless (pointless), or with adapter (could work of course but not optimal)

Comment edited 14 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Chris_in_Osaka
By Chris_in_Osaka (Feb 7, 2012)

The Pentax is mirrorless, but the distance of the lens mount to sensor is the same. Essentially a box without a mirror. Have a look at the top view of it side by side with the K-5. That's why it can take K mount lenses. So, yes...it could be done by Canon too if they choose to.

2 upvotes
AdamJRed
By AdamJRed (Feb 7, 2012)

Really? No IS on the 24-70?? Wow...

7 upvotes
rjx
By rjx (Feb 7, 2012)

So Canon puts IS in the 24mm prime, but not the 24-70 II. wtf? Seems backwards to me.

12 upvotes
wlachan
By wlachan (Feb 7, 2012)

24/28/2.8? Why?

2 upvotes
The Customer
By The Customer (Feb 7, 2012)

Have to say... Kind of intrigued by the idea of stabilized short primes... Wish they'd added IS to the 28/1.8, but still... these look potentially cool.

1 upvote
Timbukto
By Timbukto (Feb 7, 2012)

Don't look like great EF lenses to me. f2.8? I guess I can thank Canon for improving resale value on my APS-C camera with 17-55 2.8 IS lens. I don't consider IS for 24 or 28 mm on FF in any way innovative or ground breaking...it equates to the wide-angle of my 17-55 where IS is *least* felt. Sorry but the D800 is the more interesting release thus far.

1 upvote
Jens_G
By Jens_G (Feb 7, 2012)

You left out the 24-70 IS Tamron

5 upvotes
mkln
By mkln (Feb 7, 2012)

I actually really like those 2 small primes.

- in APSC terms the 24 2.8 is 16 f/2 IS (nonexistent)
- 24mm -> aperture doesn't really matter in terms of DOF. then there's IS and that is a 3+ stop advantage (can shoot in light conditions absolutely unavailable to any other lens).
- couple this with supposed great ISO from 5D3 -> night monster.
*like*

1 upvote
Stig Nygaard
By Stig Nygaard (Feb 7, 2012)

mkln, maybe I misunderstand you. But on an APS-C camera the 24 2.8 is similar to how a 38 f/2.8 IS would be on a fullframe (Regarding DOF, f/2.8 on APS-C is like f/4.0 on a FF). I'm not sure we disagree, just in doubt what you are trying to say :-)

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Veridicus
By Veridicus (Feb 8, 2012)

With five L series lenses to my collection, it will cost me to convert to Nikon, but it seems worth considering at this time. Canon derailed themselves by introducing a NON - IS 24-70 lens, and it might well be time to go with a more progressive company. I'm not about to make a hasty decision, but this latest news calls for a quantum shift in planning.

0 upvotes
Axibis
By Axibis (Feb 7, 2012)

What about a new ff Body ?

Thanx.

4 upvotes
Chris_in_Osaka
By Chris_in_Osaka (Feb 7, 2012)

March 2012

1 upvote
mkln
By mkln (Feb 7, 2012)

yeah Canon, DO release great lenses so I don't buy a D800.
I want more.

3 upvotes
Total comments: 268
123