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Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM

Review Date: Feb 15, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,370.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Beautifully built. Ideal range of focal lengths on a full-frame camera. Excellent image quality (but see the negative below).
With a full-frame digital camera (specifically, the Canon 1Ds M2), need to apply correction for chromatic aberration when shooting with large aperatures at short focal lengths.

I really like this lens, but ...

My camera is the full-frame Canon 1Ds Mark II which seems to "exaggerate" or "call attention" to chromatic aberration with this lens. I was shocked and very disappointed when I looked at my first picture exposed at f/2.8 and 16mm. The fuzziness at the edges was dreadful -- not acceptable. Fortunately, I recognized the presence of chromatic aberration and applied the necessary correction in Adobe Camera Raw. Voila, a very impressive picture (using a normal amount of unsharp masking). When CA is severe, it not only causes color fringing but also fuzziness. This lens is vulnerable to the problem in the extreme.

Note that people with full-frame FILM cameras and "cropped-frame" digital cameras probably will not see anywhere near the same level of problem. But if you have a full-frame digital camera and do not use ACR (or some other method for CA correction), then this lens may be a poor choice. If you are willing to take the few seconds necessary to apply CA correction in ACR, then this is a first-class lens.