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Author Topic: Help! I think I got a bad 16-35  (Read 14759 times)


  • EOS M5
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Re: Help! I think I got a bad 16-35
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2012, 12:15:19 AM »
A bit more information:

I did try it on my XSi... looked exactly the same on the left.  No other lens of mine is soft on the left on either of my bodies.

Also, there was focusing weirdness with the lens.  When focusing on anything more than about 30-40 yards away it would focus past the infinity marker by quite a bit (by more than the width of the focusing marker).  But here's where it gets more weird... if I would then push it even further past infinity it would help with the mushiness on the LHS!  But at that point I was "way" past infinity... for something that wasn't even really far away.  Really strange.

As I just mentioned, I mostly shoot landscapes (well, that's my hobby anyway... I probably take more pictures of my wife and my dog!) and I need a lens that is sharp... but I also need a lens that has relatively accurate focus markings...

At the end of the day (my wife hates that saying!) I just couldn't bring myself to keep it...

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Re: Help! I think I got a bad 16-35
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2012, 12:15:19 AM »


  • EOS 6D Mark II
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  • Posts: 375
Re: Help! I think I got a bad 16-35
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2012, 01:49:54 AM »
I just cannot stand any of Canon's ultra-wide zooms. Like I said, I've tested 1 copy of the 16-35 & 2 copies of the 17-40. One of those 17-40s was even sent in to Canon FSC to fix the problem (left side always softer). When it came back to me, it actually looked considerably better, though still required f/11 for optimum sharpness across the field. But then it sat in my bag at home in my closet for a few weeks & next time I took it out for a shot, the opposite side (right) became unacceptably soft. Even at f/16, it was softer than the left side.

It's a given that ultra-wide zooms are particularly prone to these sorts of problems b/c there's very small room for error given the small focal lengths (1mm change in distance-to-sensor has a much larger effect on focus for a wide angle lens than it does for a longer focal length lens). It's my personal opinion that, given my limited experiences, Canon ultra-wide zooms are just not up to the task.

Maybe I should've tested 10 or 20 copies to get a good lens. I don't know.

What I do know is that the first 2 copies of the Nikon 14-24 I tested on my 5D Mark III (one was a friend's, the other I bought) were BOTH stellar... edge-to-edge completely sharp by f/5.6, w/ f/2.8 performance looking as good as f/11 on the Canon ultra-wide zooms. And, mind you, the Nikon lens has the disadvantage of also requiring strict tolerances on the adapter itself!

Just to help you out if you do decide to go the Nikon lens route:

(1) Do not buy the cheap adapters (typically from China) off of eBay. I bought the Jiakgong one and it is wobbly enough that the lens is held too far out from the sensor & infinity focus is not possible. Also, AF confirm chip messes up performance with the 5D Mark III. The 16:9 adapter appears to require you to remove the weather sealing rubber ring around the 14-24 (huh?!), so that's out of the question IMHO. The Novoflex Nikon G adapter, on the other hand, works wonderfully. I tested all of these & settled on the Novoflex adapter, despite its cost.

(2) Note that even the Nikon 16-35/4 VR will outperform the Canon ultra-wide zooms. I tested that one as well (no VR of course), and by f/8 it already beat the all 3 copies of Canon ultra-wides I tested at f/16. It does not appear to be as sharp edge-to-edge wide open as the 14-24 is wide open though. But, on the bright side, you can get away with smaller (& easier) filter systems!

Meanwhile, my Canon 24-70/2.8 is stellar edge to edge at 24mm by f/5.6-f/8. I strongly believe that certain lenses/optical designs are just better than others, and I've simply had terrible experience with Canon ultra-wide zooms, as well as the 70-200 f/4L IS (again, I tested 3 copies), but not the 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, which is just out of this world.

Hope this helps.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2012, 01:53:35 AM by sarangiman »

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Re: Help! I think I got a bad 16-35
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2012, 01:49:54 AM »