Monday, September 17, 2012

Canon 40mm f2.8 Lens

I recently added the Canon 40mm f2.8 lens to my collection after selling the 85mm f1.2 UL II and 17-40mm f4 lenses. I used the 85mm lens a lot in the first two years but the size and weight is too much and I replaced it with the 85mm f1.8 lens.

The 17-40mm f4 lens was the choice over the 16-35mm f2.8 lens. In the end it goes back to the way I work which doesn't fit zoom lenses. I liked fixed focal length lenses and while it's harder moving to accommodate the scene for the lens than just standing there and adjusting the focal length for the scene, it's what works for me.

I've had the 40mm lens since July, and all the images of the lenses for sale on the photo gear blog were taken with the lens. I've always liked 40-45mm focal length lenses because they're what I call a wysiwyg (what you see is what you get) lens. Really?

Yeah, the 40-45mm focal length is what replicates the view of the human eye depending on your peripheral vision. The 50-55mm focal length replicates the center vision of the human eye without the peripheral vision.

This is why photos taken with 40-45mm lenses seem normal, it's the view you would see standing there. It's also why the old 1930's photos seem to be normal since many were taken with the equivalent focal length lens for 4x5 photography, 150-180mm lenses.

This lens is also called a "pancake" lens because it's compact, protruding less than an inch from the body, far less than any other lens in Canon's EOS lens line. I have several other similar lenses for my Minolta cameras, the MD 45mm f2 and old Rokkor 21mm f4.5 which required mirror lockup.

Anyway, without getting technical, which you can find those reviews on the Web, this is a nice lens, perfect for street photography and many other scenes where you want the normal look. It makes a nice walk-around lens you can shoot without being obvious.

1 comment:

  1. I thought this was interesting when they announced it. I wish it was an f/2 but it's still pretty cool. I may even get one someday but I've been doing a lot of macro photography lately (a "lot" is relative for me) so I've been concentrating there. But I have a couple of Canon QL-17 film rangefinders that I love for exactly this reason: fast 40mm lens.