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Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II

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39 69293 May 15, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
97% of reviewers $2,088.47
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.89
8.73
9.9
24tse

Specifications:
A superb refinement to a true Canon classic, the new TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II offers enhanced functionality and image quality in its most popular tilt-shift focal length. Designed with UD glass to minimize and compensate for chromatic aberrations and a specially coated aspherical element for the highest possible glare-free image quality, this tilt-shift lens features an angle of view of 84 on a full-frame camera.

New TS rotation lets users freely combine tilting and shifting within the range of /- 90 in the direction of movement. The Tilt function has an enhanced range of movement of up to /- 8.5, a revolving construction for both portrait and landscape shooting modes, locking, ergonomically-designed and easily operated tilt and shift knobs, uses a circular aperture for beautiful out-of-focus areas, and is constructed using only lead-free glass and has an SWC lens coating that controls ghosting and flare to a far greater degree than earlier coating technologies

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture: 24mm 1:3.5
Minimum Aperture: f/22
Lens Construction: 16 elements in 11 groups
Diagonal Angle of View: 84 (without tilt or shift)
Image circle diameter: 67.2mm
Focus Adjustment: Manual focus, rear focusing system (no floating system)
Closest Focusing Distance: 0.69 ft./0.21m (maximum close-up magnification: 0.34x)
Aperture Control: EMD with 8 blade iris diaphragm, circular aperture
Filter Size: 82mm
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight: 3.5 x 4.2 in./88.5 x 106.9mm, 27.5 oz./780g
Lens Cap, Lens Hood & Pouch


 


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Cgb628
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Registered: Nov 10, 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 72
Review Date: May 15, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,700.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Amazing image quality
Cons:
Manual focus and aperture make it less useful for general purpose.

Let's start with the downsides:

Manual focus. It's not really a huge deal, but it would be nice to have it for when the lens is neither tilted nor shifted, or even just to have contrast detection.

Aperture. It's not f/2.8. I don't expect it to be that fast, but it's still technically a downside.

Image quality. I have serious issues with the files in Lightroom. From 90 feet away at 3:1 magnification I cannot read facial expressions. Even my 200mm f/2.8 can do it for half the price. Jokes aside, I can read the facial expressions at 60ft/2:1 mag. That's how sharp this lens is. I was impressed with the image quality of the lens when I first looked at files in LR, then I realized I was looking at them with 2:1 magnification. I was even more impressed! The resolution of this lens is simply astounding. Pixel peepers can finally get a wide angle and rest easy. The optical quality of this lens matches my 300 2.8L IS. It's that impressive. The files hold up to massive scrutiny.

Mechanics. They worked flawlessly. Nothing special to report here. IQ took a minor hit from maximum shift or tilt as to be expected.

My suggestion? If you have your general purpose lenses down (16-35/24-70/70-200 or primes), buy this lens. The optics are amazing, and it's a useful focal length. I sold mine due to the type of photography I do (low light, portraits, wildlife), but I would buy it back in a heartbeat if I had money to burn.


May 15, 2013
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RileyJoseph
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Registered: Sep 21, 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 172
Review Date: Feb 26, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,900.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Tiltin', shiftin', sharpness.
Cons:
Price

I first rented the 24TSE and a Zeiss 21mm to see which one I wanted. I originally purchased the Zeiss and while it was a awesome lens I still wanted more.
I sold the Zeiss and bought the 24TSE and it is an amazing lens. Super sharp across the frame due to the giant image circle of a tilt shift lens. Unlike the 17TSE it accepts filters onto the 82mm threads.
This is a great lens to have in a landscapers gear bag.


Feb 26, 2013
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Joe Costa
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Registered: Dec 6, 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 90
Review Date: Dec 14, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,900.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Outstanding edge to edge sharpness, independent tilt/shift axis rotation option, excellent build quality, great colors & resolution, works very well with 1.4x TC
Cons:
Makes your older TS-E lenses feel plastic and cheap. Expensive - This is not a casual purchase and it's a tough sell justifying it's price unless you're a pro or serious landscape photographer.

This lens is every bit as good as you've have read & heard, I've reluctantly sent mine back to B&H because I needed a more general purpose wide angle lens and the 24 TS-E is just not fast enough for indoor shots without flash and the manual only focus makes quick reaction shots in casual environments unpractical.

I WILL buy another one when the time & finances are right, if you have the luxury of a tripod and the time to carefully compose your shot this lens is a pure joy to use.

Some samples:

- Crop of a 3 shot stitch - Tilt swung up for maximum "miniature" effect:

http://dosomefink.com/pof/images/Planes%20of%20Fame%2025.jpg

- Focal plane rotated and tilted down to keep pitot tube and prop in focus:

http://dosomefink.com/pof/images/Planes%20of%20Fame%2019.jpg

- Lens rotated and tilted down to keep right hand rail in focus:

http://dosomefink.com/pof/images/Planes%20of%20Fame%2020.jpg




Dec 14, 2012
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retrofocus
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Registered: Apr 19, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 4029
Review Date: Oct 15, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,750.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, no vignetting, excellent IQ
Cons:
Tiny plastic interlock buttons, 82 mm filter ring, price

I bought my lens copy used in mint condition as upgrade from my 24/3.5 vers. I T/S lens. Optically it is a visible improvement - shifting the lens fully up or down does not lead to any cumbersome vignetting in the corners as the old lens version did. The lens overall is very sharp and provides an excellent IQ.
I also like that tilt and shift functions can now be rotated against each other easily in any angle.

Compared to my old version of this lens, I only see a few drawbacks which I want to mention here. Optically it does not make a difference, but the built style of the old T/S version was a metal housing while this new version uses plastic. This is especially visible when using the interlock buttons which are now tiny plastic locks (formerly metal). As mentioned in other reviews below, the new version now uses a 82 mm filter thread. This might have been needed to create a larger image circle of the lens to shift it better and to remove vignetting issues, but it forces you to get a new polarizer filter if needed.

The price for the new Canon T/S lens versions skyrocket. I recommend looking for a used one in excellent condition which saves you a couple of $$$.


Oct 15, 2012
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dimsonation
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Registered: Oct 30, 2010
Location: Israel
Posts: 7
Review Date: Oct 5, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: IQ, build quality
Cons:
no weather sealing, vulnerable knobs

I purchased this lens to become my main landscape workhorse (that is untill i can find a decent UWA with corner to corner sharpness and one that can accept filters).
Initially i was hesitant, after using 17-40L for a while and getting used to its wide angle. However the transition from 17 to 24mm proved to be less traumatic than i expected and it did provide a more natural perspective.
the ability to stitch panoramas with the shift function proved to be priceless while the tilt allowed to use the sweet spot of the lens without compromising the DOF
it's sharpness and contrast pretty much blew me away from the first shot compared to my 17-40L, no complaints there

my only complaint about this lens would be the lack of weather sealing ( i often shoot in less than ideal weather conditions that might include rain and/or sea spray, so i have to be extra cautious with that lens. the other thing are the knobs and lock levers on the lens which don't feel too reliable.

other than that its a great lens which fits my needs almost perfectly







Oct 5, 2012
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Gunzorro
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Registered: Aug 27, 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 6665
Review Date: Sep 26, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Amazing lens -- a must for anyone who enjoys outdoor or architectural photography.
Cons:
Bulky

One of my very favorite "core" lenses. I'm the perfect demographic for this lens: I like outdoors and buildings, and I insist on excellent detail and image control. Coming from 4x5 shooting, this is a natural fit, but it is easy enough for beginners to pick up. Great images can be had without any adjustments -- it is one of Canon's premier lenses within all the "L" lenses.

Although bulky, it is not overly heavy, and I do a lot of shooting hand held.


Sep 26, 2012
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DBotting
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Registered: Jun 23, 2008
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 38
Review Date: Sep 11, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, great Colour and contrast. Very little distortion. Great build quality. A very professional and classy product.
Cons:
Price

This lens is so sharp. That includes performance at the all important f11 ap too.

Of course sharpness alone does not produce a great lens but it's a good start. Pretty soon though I found it excelled in all area's and for me it quickly became a favourite. If I see a beautiful scene, I know this lens will do it justice.

I like to use a Hoya polorising filter and if I get up at dawn to shoot with this lens, that combination is often spellbinding to my eyes. Particularly if water is involved in the scene. Everything looks good. Somehow it draws me into the scene like no other lens does.

I am an amateur photographer but the TSE 24mm f3.5L II flatters my abilities. This is a special lens imo. There is a look to the photos it produces. 'Classy' springs to mind.


Sep 11, 2012
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Peter Kirk
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Registered: Sep 25, 2004
Location: Australia
Posts: 309
Review Date: Aug 31, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,200.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Features, sharpness, build quality, color
Cons:
$$$ pricey, but worth EVERY cent.

Probably the best 24mm prime out there today.
The fact that it has Tilt and Shift (and performs them brilliantly) is a BONUS.

Great architecture/landscape lens.
would not part with it.


Aug 31, 2011
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JohnnyMelbourn
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Registered: Aug 25, 2011
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Aug 25, 2011 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated

Pros: Solid feel, perfect manual focus ring, high contrast,
Cons:
Quality control

I was in half a mind to even write this, no doubt many if this lens fanboys will just dismiss it out of turn but there we go.

I was in the Market for replacing my distagon, basically wanted to be able to shoot a little quicker at times without needing stop down metering and manual focus.

I bought this because it intrigued me, yes I know it's manual focus but at this point I was curious!
I used to love my 85mm PC Lens for the Nikon so was eager to try this.
Upon trying it I noticed the left hand corners were exceptionally soft wide open, just like you would get with a decentered lens, and this is on my 40d!
And yes if anyone wonders I of course had all lens movements set at 0 and locked lol!

Another thing which is curious is that the filter screw thread wouldn't accept my filters!
I even ordered another 82mm filter to check, I'm wondering if this received a bang in the factory which perhaps caused problem with the element alignment?

The only reason I'm complaining about this is because at this pricing level all the lenses coming out of the factory should be given a human check and see if they meet basic operating criteria (ie not broken).

On a side note I now have the 24mm f1.4 L II and it's performing beautifully.


Aug 25, 2011
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J Rabin
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Registered: Aug 6, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 528
Review Date: Jun 18, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Image quality, responsive manual focus ring, independent T-S movement, ability to use 1.4x TC, close working distance and class leading max native magnification for "thing its place" wide angle environmental close up, uncompromising overall quality, contrasty sharp at full open f/3.5 aperture
Cons:
Maybe weight, cost of 82mm filters, cramped working area with 1.6 sensor camera, nothing really

A class leading lens. I've a feeling this may be a "signature" Canon EOS system lens. I mean, if you wanted its use, this lens alone might be reason enough to become a Canon owner. We think of Canon's signature lenses as long IS teles, or 70-200 f/2.8 IS II (certainly not Canon wide angle lenses).
I do not use wide angle lenses much, but when I do, I frequently make wide angle environmental close ups. As long as the 24mm focal length is wide enough (some people would say not on 1-D 1.3x or 1.6x format bodies), this T-S lens is unparalleled with regard to performance at close distances. It is an amazing chunk of optical glass, engineering design, and workmanship.
It's not a lens to throw in the bag and head out. The learning curve complexity of independent T-S movement requires practice.
While I might wish it was an f/2.8, so when using it with the 1.4x TC you were not at f/5, this is a minor nit to be ignored, since the in-out focus plane can be adjusted.
In the interests of disclosure, I use it on a 1.3x 1-D body, not 35mm, and I've been on FM for 7 years and this is the first review submitted. It's stellar.
The price is not out of line. I've been wondering whether the new Lens Baby Composer Pro with the Sweet 35mm optic might give this a run for the money for casual users who want to throw a lens like this in the bag and play. The weight and size and complexity makes this not a lens to just have in the bag for play or without a purpose.


Jun 18, 2011
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lamontsanders
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Registered: Apr 7, 2009
Location: United States
Posts: 352
Review Date: May 2, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,050.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: IQ. Extremely versatile.
Cons:
Cost

Fantastic IQ. Excellent for landscape work. It's really excellent for anything that calls for 24mm. I would ramble about how spectacular it is...but you get the idea. It's worth it. If you are thinking about buying it...buy it.

May 2, 2011
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John Daniel
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Registered: Jun 6, 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 1337
Review Date: Feb 13, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,100.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: IQ, IQ, IQ. Solide, versatile, moderne. Perfect. Best lens for landscapes.
Cons:
Price.

Having worked with the 24-70 2.8L and the 24-105 4L, I really had the chance to compare the TS-E 24 to the 24mm f1.4L II for a good period of time. While the 24 1.4 is an excellent lens for landscapes and low light photography, the TS-E 24mm 3.5L II Is simply outstanding for landscapes.

If you do not shift but use the tilt to get the best of the IQ at the sweet spot f/, this lens becomes extremely sharp across the frame. Shift is offering landscapes wihout distortion and loss at a very good sharpness across the frame.

To my experience, this is the best of all 24mm, for landscape photography.


Feb 13, 2011
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Peter Kotsa
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Registered: Nov 1, 2007
Location: Australia
Posts: 267
Review Date: Feb 12, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,500.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: It performs its task to a T. Very impressive image quality..even at the edges.
Cons:
$$$...lol

The feel and build quality is AMAZING. It makes me want to sell my 5 year old gear and buy ALL the NEW stuff Canon is releasing..beautifully constructed lens.
Optically I have nothing but HIGH Praise. The Best on the market by far. 5 stars all the way with this lens.


Feb 12, 2011
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Fr3d
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Registered: Nov 28, 2008
Location: Germany
Posts: 292
Review Date: Jan 6, 2011 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: superb IQ (Canon's sharpest 24mm lens?), tilt and shift axis can be adjusted independently of each other, lens takes filters (82mm)
Cons:
none

I wanted a TS lens for my landscape photography (5D2) since a long time
mostly to be able to control perspective distortion (trees etc.). Even if
this lens seemed a bit expensive at first I am glad I bought it. The images
just have a special kind of look to them without converging lines. Now I
know why some ppl say that any serious landscape photographer should
own perspective control lenses.

Opticaly performance and build quality are superb. The lens is a pleasure
to use too (it's manual focus only btw). Highly recommended.


Jan 6, 2011
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CarusoPhoto
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Registered: Nov 30, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 54
Review Date: Dec 27, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: It does what it was meant to do with aplomb and elegance. Ability to revolve the tilt and shift for greater flexibility. Image quality.
Cons:
None.

This is not a lens for someone just starting out in photography as it has a highly specialized use. But for the photographer who NEEDS a tilt-shift lens, I can't imagine one can do any better than this beauty. The image quality is top-notch, and the redesigned version II is truly a fine lens. The ability to rotate the tilt and the shift mechanisms is amazingly useful and freeing.

Sure, there is a learning curve to fully understanding--and, therefore, utilizing--a tilt shift lens, but once one scales that curve, the possibilities are boundless. And this lens can take tilt-shift photography even farther.


Dec 27, 2010
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ViscaB
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Registered: Sep 9, 2009
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 507
Review Date: Oct 1, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness, no CA, contrast, no distortion, build.
Cons:
Balancing act of stopping down for corners and diffraction. See below.

A fantastic piece of engineering by Canon. I also own the 17 TS-E and both lenses are fantastic. For an architecture photographer it should be a reason to consider Canon especially paired with a 5D mark II (or 1dsMark III). In my opinion using live view is vital for focussing especially when using tilt.

If there is one minor drawback that I found it's the fact that you need to stop down significantly to get "sharp corners". The corners on the 17 TS-E seem to hold down better. A related quibble is that you seem to lose sharpness when stopping down more than on the 17 TS-E. Therefore I sometimes combine images using the "stopped down version" for the corners only.

Images speak louder than words. You can find a high resolution sample here. Reasonable amount of shift used. Taken at f/10.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/xavibarca/5031119973/sizes/o/in/photostream/


Oct 1, 2010
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Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
39 69293 May 15, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
97% of reviewers $2,088.47
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.89
8.73
9.9
24tse


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