« on: February 07, 2012, 10:05:15 AM »
Now, let's all calm down for a minute. These prices are MSRP.
The MSRP of the EF-s 60mm f/2.8 macro is $750, & B&H sells it for $450 (plus there's a $40 rebate on top of that at the moment). So if we assume that after the "new" factor wears off & a lot of the new primes get into the channel they'll be selling at about the same 40 points off MSRP as the EF-s macro, then we're looking at about $480 for the 28mm and $510 for the 24mm. They may be a little more than that for a while as production ramps up, but I'd be very surprised if the 24mm was more than $599 at B&H this summer.
If the new primes were f/2 or faster (or if they had done a 20mm or wider as well) I seriously would have considered one them at the prices above if the IQ was up to snuff. As it is, between my 24-105L and my 20mm f/3.5 Voigtländer pancake I think I'll stick with what I've got in the wide prime department...
Given the price point & the target market, I really have a hard time understanding why they went with f/2.8 instead of replacing the 28mm f/1.8 USM. Do they really think anyone wants slower primes? Perhaps they felt that a 24mm f/2 IS USM was too close to the 24 f/1.4L & would cannibalize sales...
I imagine that there were two reasons for announcing the 24 USM at the same time:
- unlike 28mm & 20mm, there was never a 24mm non-L USM (same goes for 35mm).
- the 28 and 24 are so similar that they were designed from the beginning to have a very high degree of parts commonality (perhaps even some of the optical elements like the IS group), so it makes sense that they would do both at the same time to increase the economies of scale. I think it could even be said that we got the 28 "for free" as a result of it being a very minor redesign of the new 24 (which was missing in the lineup, unlike the old 28 they dropped last month).
I would even hypothesize that this parts commonality could be the reason for the slower aperture; perhaps a 28mm f/1.8 IS USM couldn't be made as identical to, say, a 24mm f/2 IS USM as these twins are.
The upside of all this is that it's possible that they release other lenses on this new common IS USM prime "platform", like a 35mm f/2...