It looks like Nikon is planning to introduce its new Phase Fresnel technology to some popular focal lengths. A newly discovered patent shows a Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 lens with a Phase Fresnel element.
Sigma has been on a tear as of late. Since late 2012, the company has put out a highly regarded 35mm f/1.4 lens, a novel USB dock that lets you calibrate lenses at home, and a revolutionary 18-35mm lens with a constant f/1.8 aperture (shown above).
It appears Sigma is only just getting warmed up: new rumors suggest that Sigma may be building a 24-70mm zoom lens for full frame cameras that boasts a constant f/2.0 aperture.
Ever since Canon’s new 24-70mm f/2.8L II arrived late last year, lens reviewers around the web have been saying very nice things about its sharpness. DxOMark is the latest tester to do so. Here’s what it has to say:
[…] the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8 MkII is the highest scoring professional fixed-aperture mid-range kit zoom of any brand in the DxO Mark database and comfortably outperforms rivals as well as the firm’s earlier Mark I version, particularly with regard to the sharpness levels across the frame. We’re used to seeing a noticeable deterioration in performance in the outer fields at longer focal lengths even with high-quality optics from the big-name marques but the new Canon bucks that trend.
The company writes that the main issue is the lens’ price of $2,500 — quite steep when compared to rival lenses. Check out the full review for a more detailed breakdown of how the new 24-70mm performs.
After the Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L Mark II was announced at the beginning of this year, many photographers were disappointed that it didn’t include Image Stabilization. When October rolled around, there were new rumors that Canon had an IS version of the 24-70mm up its sleeve. The company did, but it wasn’t what people were expecting. When the new IS lens was unveiled in November, it was an f/4 lens rather than an f/2.8.
If you’re one of the many people who wanted both the convenience of having IS and the benefits of having f/2.8, here’s some good news: there is indeed a 24-70mm f/2.8 IS on the way.
Despite its girth, weight, and price, Canon’s original 24-70mm f/2.8L is a highly-regarded general-purposes lens. When the followup Mark II version was announced back in February, the higher-price tag, similar specs, and lack of IS had many photographers scratching their heads. Then the reviews started coming out.
Canon’s two soon-to-be-announced lenses were leaked today by Japanese website Digicam info. The first one is, as suspected, the 24-70mm f/4 IS. The second one was more a surprise: it’s not a new 50mm, but a 35mm f/2 IS. Canon is continuing its new trend of building image stabilization into wider-angle lenses — a bit strange for still photographers, but great news for people who record video with their DSLRs.
Last week we reported on rumors of an upcoming Canon 24-70mm f/4 IS lens. The latest word is that the lens is “coming soon”, and won’t be announced alone. In addition to updating the popular 24-70mm focal range with image stabilization — useful for video recording — Canon may also be planning to announcing a second lens, reportedly an image-stabilized followup to the much-loved Canon 50mm f/1.4.
When Canon unveiled the followup lens to its popular Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 L back in February, many photographers found it strange that the lens eschewed Image Stabilization even while two wide-angle prime lenses announced at the same time had IS. After all, a $2,300 lens that extends to 70mm on the telephoto end seems like it would benefit more from stabilization than 24mm and 28mm lenses. If you’ve been yearning for a “Brick” (as the 24-70mm used to be called) with IS, here’s some good news: the lens reportedly exists, and may already be floating around in the wild for initial tests.
After being announced back in 2002 as a replacement to the 28-70mm, Canon’s 24-70mm f/2.8 (above right) quickly became an extremely popular and highly regarded lens due to its friendly all-around focal range and sharpness. When the Mark II version was unveiled back in February to succeed “The Brick”, as the Mark I version is called, photographers grumbled at its hefty $2,300 price tag, the fact that it uses an 82mm filter instead of 77mm, and the lack of Image Stabilization. Roger Cicala over at LensRentals tested out the new lens, and has extremely positive things to say about it:
This is short, sweet, and simple. The resolution absolutely, positively kicks butt and takes names. It is way better than the lens it replaces. It’s better at 70mm than the best Canon zoom I know of, the 70-200 f/2.8 IS II. It’s even better at 24mm than the sharpest 24mm prime we have, the Canon 24 TS-E. In the center, in the corners, it doesn’t care. We only had 5 copies to test, but they were all very similar with little copy-to-copy variation.
Resolution is not everything, of course. But it’s certainly an important thing. Unless the real lens reviewers find some dramatic problems with this lens, I’d have to lean towards worth-the-money on this one. I can’t believe I’m saying that a $2,300 standard zoom is worth the money. But then again, I can’t believe I’m seeing a zoom lens out resolve a $2,000 world-class prime, either.
Okay, okay. Time to sell a kidney.
Canon 24-70 f/2.8 II Resolution Tests [LensRentals]
Do you like movies that make you think and make more sense the second time around? If so, “Tick Tock” is a short film that you’ll probably enjoy. This 4 minute film was shot in one take with a Canon 5D Mark II and 24-70mm lens, and required a whopping 36 takes to get right. If this doesn’t inspire you to do something awesome with your DSLR, we don’t know what will.
Update: You can watch a making-of video here.