April 2, 2009

From Gerald R. Lucas

New Toy

Go wide or go home. I finally have my first Canon “L” lens: the EF 16-35mm f/2.8 L II USM. And it’s a beauty.


I started a new set on my Flickr account to feature some shots from this gorgeous piece of glass. I’m sure I’ll add to it for a while, at least until the novelty wears off. The first impressions are excellent: solid and well built, it feels just right on the 5D.

Before this lens, I had the excellent Tokina AT-X 124 AF PRO DX 12-24mm f/4 which I bought the day before my wedding, May 19, 2006, and used for about 3 years. The Tokina is a tank, and I took some wonderful pictures with it. However, it had two drawbacks for me: it was slow, both to focus and in aperture. It is a wonderful lens in good light, but forget about using it in low-light situations. Also, the focal length was a bit too far at 30cm, especially at 12mm. Still, even with these “drawbacks,” the Tokina is an excellent lens, and I have no regrets about purchasing it.

The Canon 16-35mm makes up for the Tokina’s drawbacks. It’s fast: the USM is quick and silent, and the aperture is f/2.8, letting copious light to my 5D’s full-frame sensor and creating creamy bokeh. The focal length also bests the Tokina at 28 cm, though it seems like I can get much closer than that.

If the rain stops, I should be out there giving this beauty a full test this weekend. Stay tuned.

Canon Camera Information
Camera: Canon Digital Rebel XT1, Canon EOS 30D, Canon EOS 5D, or Canon EOS 6D • Prime Lenses: Sigma 10mm f/2.8 EX DC Fisheye HSM, Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM, Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM, or Canon EF f/1.2 85mm L USM • Zoom Lenses: Canon EF f/2.8 16–35mm L, Canon EF 24–70mm L, Canon EF 70–200mm L IS USM, Tokina AT-X 124 AF PRO DX 12-24mm f/4 • Processed with Apple Aperture.