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Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

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520 908415 Sep 12, 2014
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85% of reviewers $1,512.56
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.47
8.03
9.0
24-105lisusm

Specifications:
This easy-to-use standard zoom lens can cover a large zoom area ranging from 24mm wide-angle to 105mm portrait-length telephoto, and its Image Stabilizer Technology steadies camera shake up to three stops. Constructed with one Super-UD glass element and three aspherical lenses, this lens minimizes chromatic aberration and distortion. The result is excellent picture quality, even at wide apertures. Canon's ring-type USM gives silent but quick AF, along with full-time manual focus. Moreover, with dust- and moisture-resistant construction, this is a durable yet sophisticated lens that meets the demands of advanced amateur photographers and professional photographers alike.

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture: 24-105mm f/4

Lens Construction: 18 elements in 13 groups

Diagonal Angle of View: 84° - 23° 20' (with full-frame camera)

Focus Adjustment: Inner focusing system with focusing cam

Closest Focusing Distance: 1.48 ft./0.45m

Zoom System: 5-group helical zoom (front group moves: 32.5mm)

Filter Size: 77mm

Max. Diameter x Length, Weight: 3.3 in. x 4.2 in., 23.6 oz. / 83.5mm x 107mm, 670g (lens only)



 


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sberley
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Registered: Dec 30, 2005
Location: N/A
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,250.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Wonderful lens. Very sharp, good color...
Cons:
Would be great if it were 2.8

I love this lens - just got back from 17 days in Vietnam and Cambodia using this lens on a 20D.

Check out my photos and see for yourself what this lens can do...

http://pix.berley.com/gallery/1047398/4/49432483
http://pix.berley.com/gallery/1047398/7/49434328
http://pix.berley.com/gallery/1047398/11/49435719

Steve


Dec 30, 2005
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supershot
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Registered: Dec 30, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp , sharp good colour I love this lens
Cons:
none

I love this lens , good colour sharp from 24-105 .the image stabilizer works great
I use this lens on my Canon 20d I also own 16-35 L 2.8 and
100-400 L in my book L stand for quality .
I tried many other lenses but I am totaly satisfied with my three L lenses ...


Dec 30, 2005
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steveprice
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Registered: Dec 3, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 38
Review Date: Dec 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: Analysis of December reviews
Cons:

Some people like this lens, some dont. So how does it stack up by type of camera? I did some sums. I counted who likes it, who doesn't and what sort of kit they have i.e. full frame or crop sensor. In Dec 05 (up to 28th: aVOlanche) there are 31 reviews, this is the breakdown:

Full frame (i.e. 5D owners): 4 out of 4 dislike
Crop sensor: 17 likes, 3 dislikes
Kit not indicated: 5 likes, 2 dislikes.(1)

(1) Reading between the lines I suspect those people whot did not indicate their kit are sub-full frame users. The full frame users who dislike it do so largely because of the vignetting.

My vignetting tests by f stop:
24mm@f4 severe vignetting, correctable to moderate
24mm@f5.6 moderate, correctable to slight
24mm@f8 slight, correctable to very slight
24mm@f11 very slight, correctable to imperceptible
24mm@f16 imperceptible, correctable to none
24mm@f22 none visible

(Severe, moderate, slight and very slight all mean visible).

My vignetting tests by focal length:
24mm@f4 severe vignetting, correctable to moderate
28mm@f4 slight, correctable to very slight
35mm@f4 imperceptible, correctable to none
50mm none
70mm none
105mm none

Cropping test
Instead of correcting the vignetting why not just crop it out using Photoshop? Taking the worst instance of vignetting i.e. 24mm@f4, the original image size of 14.6x9.7 inches had to to be cropped to 12.3x7.5 inches. The new size gives about the same angle of view as the 35mm lens setting or, I suspect, a 1.6 crop! Even after correcting as much as possible for vignetting before cropping I still ended up with about the same size picture, 12.4x7.9 inches. Whats the point of having a full frame sensor at twice the cost if you have to restrict your focal length or crop it to a sub-full frame equivalent.

Shooting conditions
I do a lot of architectural photography and my test shots were of an interior with white walls. I used the camera on its default settings i.e. fine quality jpegs etc.

Post production
My citeria when correcting in Photoshop CS2 (v9), using the vignetting sliders under the lens correction filter option, was not to let whites burn out or to introduce other artefacts as a result of correcting e.g. colour distortions. I did not other correction.

Results
At 24mm, on a 5D, vignetting is apparent at all apertures except f22 and only fully correctable under my test conditions at f16.

Conclusion
Lovers of this lens are sub-full frame. If vignetting is a problem for you and you shoot full frame then test this lens under your typical shot situations first. If like me you like shooting architectural interiors, i.e. wide open in low light then get used to vignetting or go sub-full frame. This is a shame because by going sub-full frame many people are missing the joys of wide angle photography. Some preliminary shots showed that spot on exposure is imperative to keeping vegnetting down to these levels.

Addendum
I knocked this out fairly quickly. If you see any flaws in my argument I will be delighted to hear from you. I am looking for reasons to keep the lens and the 5D.




Dec 30, 2005
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joe mama
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Registered: Oct 3, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 4618
Review Date: Dec 29, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,150.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Crazy sharp, even wide open on a 5D, killer IS, excellent range.
Cons:
Slow (f / 4) and I don't like where the zoom ring is. Handling of flare not as good as the Tamron 28-75 / 2.8, but still good.

I only owned the lens for a week, so take all I say with a grain of salt.

For it's range, this lens simply cannot be beat. I was blown away by the sharpness of this lens, even wide open. The image quality is basically the same as the Tamron 28-75 / 2.8 from f / 4 and up, but the Tamron handled flare a little better, but was most noticeable when aimed directly into the sun, such as sunset.

The reason I opted to keep the Tamron over the Canon was due to the size, weight, the speed advantage of the Tamron, and the *slightly* better handling of flare. If the 24-105 / 4L IS had either the same size and weight as the Tamron, had the same speed (f / 2.8), or handled flare better than the Tamron, I would easily have kept it. However, money not being infinite, the 28-75 / 2.8 is a better lens for me, but I bet that this lens is definitely better for the vast majority.

As for price, while very expensive, it is definitely in line with Canon's pricing. It's basically the same price as the 24-70 / 2.8L. The trade-off is one stop for greater range, IS, and considerably less size and weight. Having owned the 24-70 / 2.8L in the past, I'd definitely take this lens over it.

So, even though I kept the Tamron over the Canon, this lens still gets 10/10.

Below is a link to test pics I took with it on a 5D -- it is very difficult to find fault with this lens. Who knows, I may even get one in the future.

http://www.pbase.com/joemama/canon_24105


Dec 29, 2005
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aVOLanche
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Registered: Apr 7, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 159
Review Date: Dec 28, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,002.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Typical "L" lens attributes: Beautiful color Sharp IS is wonderful
Cons:
none yet


This is my most used lens.I have a 70-200 F2.8 IS L,and think IS is the only way to go.I'm so glad I got this lens instead of the 24-70 f2.8 L.It seemed a little heavy at first,but I'm accustomed to the weight already.I'll not repeat all the stuff everyone else has written.Suffice it to say that I'm in love with this lens.Very highly recommended!


Dec 28, 2005
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mariusg
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Registered: Sep 22, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 25, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,250.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: sharpness. zoom range. weight, IS
Cons:
distortion, vignetting, weird light effects, it extends quite a lot

Really sharp wide open and corner to corner on a FF sensor. The IS an amazing feature (assuming it kicks-in/works when you need it). I have shaky hands, and I am thrilled because I managed to handheld at 1/5 with IS consistently. As far as low light goes, 24-70 2.8 is not even an option (it is an option for somethign else, but not low light). The extra stop is absolutely ZERO in the real world, because where this is needed more, in dim to average lit indoors, one needs much more than one stop (at least 5 stops compared to overcast). I am surprised some people spend that much on a lens and can't tell the difference between sun light and indoor lighting. An F:1.4 can replace the IS in every situation. But then you have the sharpness. 35/1.4 is softer wide open than this (I've only seen 35/1.4 crops, I have not tested the lens myself). The lens it's ok as far as weight goes. Focusing is really fast and quiet most of the time.

Now the bad stuff (on a full-frame camera):
- Horrible vignetting, throughout the zoom range.
- Horrible distortions, it has barrel distortion from 24 to 35mm, pincussion to 50mm, and barrel again to 105mm. The barrel distiortion is most visible at 24 and 105mm. What I hate most is the pincussion, that's really in the most usable range (35-50), and it cannot be corrected without loosing detail
- weird light falloff, on overcast light, in certain cases vignetting is much more visible on one side depending on where is the light coming from (some sort of pre-1000 flare remnants)
- Horrible CA
- the IS is erratic sometimes
- very weird color cast (some test shots with grass and dirt came out with purple dirt)
- it extends, quite a lot
- spherical DOF (I don't see the purpose for the macro marking on the distance scale - its magnigfication ratio totally sucks, working distance too, the DOF is more like a sphere than a plane)
- mine came with a very stiff zoom ring (but it started to losen up)

Conclusion: If you can live with the distortions, abberations and the light fall off, then it's a really nice lens for a full frame camera. You'll lose the sharpness edge when you correct for pincussion. It's better than 17-40 and 16-36 in corner-to-corner sharness, but I am not sure it's better than 24-70/2.8 at F4.


Dec 25, 2005
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bromesko
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Registered: Dec 21, 2005
Location: Sweden
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 24, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: The lens is well built and the weight it´s OK.
Cons:
The distortion - pos and neg, and the strong vignetting

With my Eos 5D it´s impossible to use the 24-35mm zoomrange because of the vignetting. The distorsion is also a problem. So if you take a landscape whith f4 to f8 and 24 mm
you have all of the lens´s problem.


Dec 24, 2005
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rten1
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Registered: Jun 26, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 24, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,200.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: sharp, light weight, good range
Cons:
Image noise??

I'd like to get some feed back from others who have tested this lens. I like all the "spec"s of the lens, as it's a great balance for size, range, quality, etc. My question comes from testing against my 50mm f/1.4 prime (both compared at f/4.0 50mm, handheld; tested the 24-105 both with and without IS, both lenses tested in ISO 100 on my 20D).

The 24-105 has slightly, but noticably better sharpness (with IS active) and color saturation, compared to the 50mm 1.4 - I was very pleased with this since I've had great results with my 50mm and other prime lenses.

What struck me as very odd is that the 24-105 has very noticable noise compared to the 50mm, even with the IS non-active, at ISO 100. Could this be something in the electronics, or a feature of the lens glass? Could this be copy-specific?

I shoot mostly prime lenses, and my only other zoom is the Canon 70-200mm 2.8, but I immediately noticed the noise on the 24-105.

Any feedback is much appreciated.




Dec 24, 2005
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DaveClarkOne
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Registered: Aug 1, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 24, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,250.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fab versatility and for a zoom, very sharp.
Cons:
Stiff zoom ring (Canon would do well to engineer a consistent drag on zoom ring across all lenses).

Fab versatility and for a zoom, very sharp. The quality of the lens is ready for war, and anyone asking for 2.8 shouldn't because the weight would compromise its appeal. Be wary of a troll on this lens (give it a rest, please). This lens is worthy of the L designation for a zoom. I sold my 17-40 f/4 and haven't looked back.

Dec 24, 2005
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CBDigital
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Registered: May 26, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 326
Review Date: Dec 23, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,200.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good focal range for weddings, sharp, decent bokeh, it has become my main wedding and event lens.
Cons:
Wish it was a 2.8!

Mine is one of the first models but I have never experienced any of the flare problems posted about this lens. Basically this lens has replaced my 24-70 as my main wedding lens. It gets me some shots that I could not have gotten with the 24-70 and the IS makes up somewhat for the loss of the F 2.8.

I don't like to be switching lenses when doing weddings and this lens gives me the best range vs performance of the various canon lenses I have used.



Dec 23, 2005
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jph1
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Registered: Jun 2, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1022
Review Date: Dec 23, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,275.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: My copy is sharper than my old 24-70. Build quality. IS.
Cons:
Distortion at 24mm. Cost. Some vignetting. Not as sharp at the 105 end.

I think I will be getting a lot of use out of this lens. When I first got it and did some quick tests, I was amazed how good it was at 24mm. Also, the wide open performance was better than I expected.
Vignetting and distortion are problems but workable. Different scenes/subjects will make these issues more prominent, but I find that about 10% really need fixing in PS. This is my first IS lens and I just finished looking at a tack sharp 100% crop at 1/6th of a second exposure. Incredible.

Jim


Dec 23, 2005
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knoxman
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Registered: Dec 7, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 2
Review Date: Dec 23, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,300.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: color, relatively decent sharpness, size, weight
Cons:
SPEED, price...

I've so far enjoyed this lens... I am by no means a "Pro" (though I spend like one), and really couldn't tell you it's as good as the 70-200L IS USM (it’s not), because I do find f/4 a bit slow and aggravating, but I've lived with it on the 17-85, and was pleased with that lens (given the size and weight and IS).

This lens has beautiful color. The images look well-saturated fir off the card -- I don't do much photoshopping to the results (unless I take a bad shot, which is my fault). The IS is a must for this lens.

I've posted a few shots that I've taken with this lens of friends -- for a walk-around lens, and in decent lighting conditions, I quite like it. Just wish it was an f/1.0 and not f/4!! : ) But then again, the 24-70 is too heavy at f/2.8 (not to mention the Byzantine reverse-zoom and lens hood).

http://www.pbase.com/knoxman/visit_john_and_eli

I would recommend this lens, yes, but with the caveat that it was only f/4. The circular aperture blades help, but it’s still not f/2.8 bokeh… The 24-70 may well be a “better lens”, but I have used it and didn’t like it (I need IS, period).

Good luck…


Dec 23, 2005
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painterdood
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Registered: Nov 25, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 4
Review Date: Dec 21, 2005 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros:
Cons:

I would like to amend my posts somewhat on this lense. My findings were so "off" that I searched carefully through the testing we had done. I found a basic error.
I went back to the store got another copy and retested it against my kit lense. The 24-105 managed to match the kit lense sharpness this go around, but just.
The 24-105 is a good general walk about lense however and I will wait a bit and see if the lense gets better as time goes along and prices drop. Then I will check it again. Right now it doesn't have the value for the cost IMHO. I bought an 70-200 F2.8 instead. I am going to let my kit lense handle the wide stuff for now.
(The 70-200f2.8 by the way, is one exceptional piece of glass!!!)

My new rating on the 24-105... 7.5


Dec 21, 2005
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rslee
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Registered: Dec 19, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 57
Review Date: Dec 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,199.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Handy IS, Relatively Sharp, Light Weight, Fast AF, and Excellent Build Quality.
Cons:
Price

I have been reading the entire reviews on this lens not just from FM but from all over the web. Needless to say, there were many confusing opinions on this product. I decided to see for myself and pick up the lens last week from a local shop.

After using this lens for a week, I am compelled to express my opinion.

As many have indicated, it is purely personal preference. I think this is an excellent lens for what it is designed for. It does what it supposed to do very well with certain limitations.

After comparing against Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 (my favorite), Canon 17-40L, 70-200 f/4 and 50 f/1.4 on a sturdy tripod, I came up with same conclusion as many have expressed.
It has its weaknesses despite the attractive features. Yes, the sharpness could be better but acceptable.

Over all, I am happy with the lens and this will be the main general purpose lens. For those who are still wondering about this lens, I suggest that you should try for yourself.


Dec 20, 2005
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temalibero
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Registered: Sep 18, 2005
Location: Italy
Posts: 0
Review Date: Dec 19, 2005 Recommend? | Price paid: $965.00

 
Pros: Ottimizzato per f4 su tutta la lunghezza focale, contrasto, colore e dettaglio sono perfetti.
Cons:
Solo il costo, ma allineato alle ottiche professionali.

Possiedo questo zoom da un mese e lo uso su una 20D e ora posso dire che sfiora la perfezione. A tutte le aperture rende immagini che portano al limite le prestazioni del CMOS della 20D. Non ho più bisogno di maschere di contrasto in PS. Con il flash 430EX il sistema E-TTL II controlla a prerfezione la distanza del soggetto e le esposizioni sono sempre precise da 24 a 105. Ricordate che non tutti gli obiettivi abilitano l'E-TTL II, solo quelli che comunicano la scala di distanza. Certamente a f4 è richiesta abilità anche da parte del fotografo, altrimenti le immagini risultano ''soft'' come dice qualcuno, ma sono solamente fuori fuoco! I piccoli compromessi sulla distorsione a 24 sono a favore della qualità dell'immagine su tutti gli altri fronti. La distorsione si corregge facilmente le abberrazioni cromatiche, il basso contrasto e dettaglio negli angoli eccetera, no.

Il mio voto rimane 10.
Altamente consigliato, non userete più le altre ottiche comprese nel suo range.


Dec 19, 2005
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AviB
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Registered: Jun 21, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 34
Review Date: Dec 19, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,249.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: IS is superb, sharp pictures, but not sharper than my other non L lenses (EF-S 60mm, and EF-S 10mm-22MM), solid build.
Cons:
Soft at 105mm, expensive

After sitting on the fence and reading all these reviews I just wanted to know for myself whether this lens is worth the money. For my objectives of a travel lens it is well built, good range, and the IS is incredible- Not sure if I'll need my tripod since I got great results even at 1/10.

Now that I've spent thousands on my camera and lenses I am slowly approaching the quality of my older Sony F717 5mp with the Zeiss lens Smile All kidding aside I do like my system because of the control and flexibility but I can bet you that a picture taken with a Sony at say f8 ISO 200 at macro-200mm will beat or be the same as a Canon L.

So all the comments from the reviewers below are correct- it's a personal qualitative measure for the most part. If you need a lens in this range- you'll enjoy it.


Dec 19, 2005
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Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
520 908415 Sep 12, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
85% of reviewers $1,512.56
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.47
8.03
9.0
24-105lisusm


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