Monday, July 27, 2015

My new Lens in Review: Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Lens

Getting a new lens for my Canon 6D was long in the making. I had my eye on the L-Series of lenses that Canon makes, and knew from the get go that I would have to save up in order to get it. I finally decided on the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Lens, which is advertised as the all-around L-lens, perfect for the traveler. I have it for two weeks now, and I can say I'm more then impressed by it. In this post I want to show you some test images, even though you will be seeing more of this lens from now on, on this blog.

click on the test images for a bigger view

The Canon 24-105mm f/4L in action!

The first trip I got to test the lens, was my recent trip to Zagreb, Croatia. As we arrived in the city, the sun had already began to set, which gave me perfect light for my photos. The lens has a wide range of 24mm to 105mm, and with my full frame Canon 6D, this gives me a good wide angle at 24mm. The shot of the church above was taken at 24mm. There is some vignetting in the raw image, but it took care of it in post. It's nothing really upsetting.

As you can see in the image that follows the colors are vibrant and really pop out. No matter if you have sunlight, or (as it was the case here) have to take the photo in the shade. This shot was taken at 35mm.


Wide angles and Close-ups with the Lens

Here is another wide shot. This time at night. As you can see the lens in combination with the Canon 6D camera, produces excellent images. And with the Camera Raw program of Adobe Photoshop you can reduce the (somewhat present) noise even lower. I think this is a great example of the quality of this lens at wider angles. You just have to know how to frame the shots, since a wider angle distorts the surroundings. Think of lines that lead your subjects into the frame.


Above: A lonely street corner in Zagreb. Taken at 50mm, there was almost no light in the square. Below: Half moon at dusk. Taken at 105mm, the lens focuses without problems directly towards the moon.


Focusing

This is a real (among others) selling point of the lens. Set on automatic mode the lens focuses on the desired subjects really really fast. It just happens so fast, that focusing becomes a thing you don't really think about anymore, but something you just do. Like in the shot below, the clouds and lines of the airplane are to the point (as much as a fluffy cloud can be in real life).


Here is a better example of focusing. Two birds on a electrical wire. The lens focuses on the narrow line of the wire and the birds immediately! No need for manual focusing (which is also there, of course, if you need it). This means you can capture your subject faster and in the moment. I'm usually afraid of the auto focus and how it will behave, but no problems here.

Image Stabilizer

Another big plus point of the lens is that it has an excellent image stabilizer built in. This means that handheld shots are so much more sharp. In the image below, I purposefully upped the ISO to 200 on the image even though I had barely any light left. The image stabilizer button on the lens is turned on at this point. I take the shot. Lenses without a stabilizer will produce a blurry image. This lens produces a sharp shot, and focuses on my dog in a millisecond (and yes, he's getting a haircut soon). The image stabilizer is great for shooting dslr video, but the motor of the stabilizer does produce some in-lens noise which is audible in the audio track of your video if you don't have a microphone.


Lens Build

The Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM Lens comes from the L-line of Canon lenses, which is the highest quality Canon produces. The lens is heavy but not too much (weight is 700 grams), and has two rings on it: one for zooming, the other for focusing, both are very sturdy and feel great when you turn them. The lens comes with a lens cap (Canon EW-83H) and a lens bag in the package. Some call it a kit lens, because it is usually sold with the Canon 6D or Canon 5D Mark III in a package, but this wording makes it seem of less importance. Believe me, there is nothing shabby about this lens. It just feels and works excellent.


Verdict:

+ Great Build and Quality
+ Focusing is excellent and the lens produces sharp images
+ Nice range from a wide 24mm to a close-up of 105mm
+ Has a macro setting built in
+ Great for dslr video
+ Image Stabilizer is great and produces smooth video and sharp images
+ Works great for travel, in-the-moment photos, landscapes, portraits and others
- Has slight vignetting at wider angle (can be taken care of in post)
- Image stabilizer motor produces noise which is audible in the audio track of your video (unavoidable but you'll have to use a mic for pro-dslr video anyway)

Highly Recommended



I hope you enjoyed the test images and the review. If you have any more questions, please let me know in the comments below.

29 comments:

  1. I can see the attraction as I have to carry three lenses to cover this range.

    I have my eye on one for the day I can afford a video camera. It would make a perfect video lens as it's aperture is fixed through it's range. Focus motor noise is not a problem as the camera mic is not worth using anyway. Never thought of using IS for video or any tripod work.
    Have fun with it.

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  2. Wonderful pics Mersad...the lens certainly seem to be worth the money! Looking forward to more :)

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  3. well you crtainly have informed us very well of all that this new lens is capable of adn I am so glad you are pleased with it yourself. Your photographs are awesome and I love your little dog with all his fur on however I am sure he now is a bit warm. Have a greatweek ahead.

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  4. Your images are beautiful, clear and crisp. You chose a dynamite lens!
    I love Canon Lenses, and their wonderful L series.
    Enjoy... and thanks for your great review!

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  5. Wow! Amazing shots and amazing views. Now that's a really wise investment.

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  6. I bought this lens for my 6D as well and it usually stays on the camera unless I'm using my macro lens. Fantastic all around travel, landscape, and general photography lens! As you said, there is some vignetting at 24mm, but I, too, correct it easily in post. Great review and I'm glad you like your new purchase!

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  7. Gratuliere dazu und viel Spaß damit!!! Liebe Grüße

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  8. Hello Mersad, beautiful images and a great review on your new lens. I think you made a great choice! Have a happy new week!

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  9. Your review is wonderful, Mersad. I have this lens too and I LOVE it. It pretty much lives on my 7D but I'm impressed it does so well on your full-frame camera as well. Great!

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  10. The fast and accurate auto focus would be a great selling point for me. Great images, as always.

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  11. A wonderful review indeed, Mersad!!! I'm going to put this camera on my "wish" list!! Thanks for sharing the beauty and the information!! Hope you have a great new week!!

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  12. I also have this lens. I bought it nearly three years ago, and it's the one that's usually on my camera. I love it's versatility - it performs superbly, even in less than ideal conditions.

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  13. Gorgeous photos, Mersad, and what a nice lens!

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  14. I have been using this lens for a number of years--and still love it as much now as the day I bought it. Enjoy.

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  15. i would love to have this lens, i saw another blogger who got it because she was tired of changing from the short to the long. this will do long, wide and short with out the work. beautiful shots and congrats on your new lens.

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  16. I like the way you use the lens and shoot the photos. That blue wall and floor gives a contrast

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  17. I also have this lens for a very long time and was never disappointed in use. It is that I now mostly use 4/3m camera's or a ricoh gr because the weight with the 1Ds is a bit to much now but its performance is stil one of the best.

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  18. Oh dear, Mersad.
    Please don't include any more posts that put something else on my wish list!

    LOL!

    Thanks for being a regular visitor to http://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2015/07/variations.html

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  19. Great shots Mersad. Tom The Backroads Traveller

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  20. Very informative post. Thank you.
    The clarity of the birds is impressive.

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  21. Oh my....your photos are outstanding...
    your camera and new lens is what every blogger dreams of. So glad you could get the fantastic lens.

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  22. Would love to get photography lessons from you.

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  23. I have this lens too - and I use it nearly every day :))
    Gorgeos photos !!

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  24. It was interesting to read your review. My every day lens is an 18 - 135 mm kit lens from Canon. A bit more on each end, but not as well made as your new lens. But, I find it works nicely for my purposes. I have a separate camera and most of the time it has a 70 - 300 mm lens on it, so I can go from 18 to 300mm just by grabbing the right camera. I also have 24 mm and 50mm prime lenses which are terrific if I plan on a specific kind of shot and have the time to switch lenses.

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  25. Very nice, don't think I can afford anymore lens at the moment but it will be Christmas soon

    Mollyxxx

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  26. I am so glad that you can get the equipment that you deserve to have to take these photos. I have heard wonderful things about the Canon and the lens looks amazing too. Enjoy!!!! ... Michelle

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  27. Great shots with the new lens!

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  28. The set up you have there is my dream! I currently shoot with a Canon 7D with the 17-40mm f/4 L and 70-200mm f/4 L. My wish is to own the 6D with the 24-105mm.
    Your images are stunning!

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