The Canon RF 14-35mm F4 L IS USM ($1,699) is an exceptionally light-weight zoom lens, particularly while you understand it is made for full-frame sensor cameras and allows an ultra-wide angle of view. It is not a shocking design alternative; a lot of Canon’s RF lenses prioritize portability. The 14-35 F4 has extra optical compromises than you would possibly count on from an L collection lens, however you could forgive these flaws due to how compact it’s. We nonetheless advocate the RF 15-35mm F2.8 L IS USM ($2,399) for extra vital and technical work, however the RF 14-35mm is a greater match for many who wish to pack gentle.
A Zoom You may Take With You
Extremely-wide lenses are helpful instruments for capturing extensive landscapes or exploring the tight areas of the city world, however they are not all the time the simplest to hold. Canon takes a web page out of rival Nikon’s playbook right here and delivers an ultra-wide zoom that you’re going to wish to take with you. The RF 14-35mm measures 3.9 by 3.3 inches (HD) and weighs simply 1.2 kilos, not far off from the Nikkor Z 14-30mm F4 S for the Nikon Z system (3.4 by 3.5 inches and 1.1 kilos).
The RF 14-35mm F4 takes up much less room in your bag than the opposite extensive zoom for Canon’s EOS R system; the 15-35mm F2.8 measures 5.0 by 3.5 inches and weighs 1.9 kilos. Main third-party lens producers have not jumped on to help the system but, so that you’re restricted to Canon’s lenses until you attain for the EF-EOS R adapter. We have not reviewed the Tokina atx-i 17-35mm F4 ($599) for Canon SLRs, nevertheless it’s one to think about in the event you’re on a price range.
The RF 14-35mm is a part of Canon’s L collection, the designation for its highest class of lenses. Like different L lenses, it options mud and splash safety and is appropriate to be used outside even when the climate will get just a little tough. The entrance component advantages from an anti-smudge fluorine coating and is flat sufficient to help 77mm threaded filters.
The ultra-wide’s petal-style lens hood has a push-button lock. Except for the hood, the lens ships with a pinch-style lens cap, a typical rear cap, and a mushy drawstring pouch.
Dealing with and Autofocus
The RF 14-35mm contains three on-barrel management rings and a pair of toggle switches: one swaps focus modes and the opposite turns stabilization on or off. The zoom ring is the biggest of the three rings and sits closest to the lens mount. It sports activities rubber ridges and is tapered, with its diameter on the entrance barely bigger than on the rear. This design contact is considerate and goes an extended solution to forestall you from tapping the guide focus ring that sits simply in entrance of it.
Autofocus is quiet and fast, whereas guide focus conduct is nice. Vloggers and snapshooters can be content material to let the digital camera drive focus, however for extra severe video work, guide focus continues to be preferable. The RF 14-35mm helps each linear and nonlinear focus response; the main target management path is reversible, too. Focus respiration is properly managed and there is no obvious change in angle when setting focus. It is a robust possibility for video, both with an EOS R mirrorless digital camera or Canon’s RF-mount EOS C70 cinema digital camera.
You’ll be able to set the operate of the third management ring that sits on the entrance of the barrel by way of the digital camera menu. I discover it helpful for direct EV changes, however your mileage might differ. The ring clicks while you flip it, which is useful for making discrete changes to settings, however that conduct could also be distracting in the event you’re recording in-camera audio. Canon can de-click the ring for an affordable $79.99 charge. It is one space the place Canon can enhance, nonetheless—many lens makers, together with rival Sony, embody a toggle to click on or de-click management rings proper on the barrel of some lenses.
Like most wide-angle zooms, the RF 14-35mm focuses shut, as close to as 7.9 inches from the digital camera’s sensor. At extensive angles, it might draw small topics with huge swaths of background, and at 35mm, it nets 1:2.6 life-size reproductions. That is not far behind the devoted $499 RF 35mm F1.8 Macro IS STM (1:2).
The 14-35mm contains optical stabilization as properly, efficient to five.5 stops when utilizing a digital camera with a hard and fast sensor, such because the first-generation EOS R and entry-level EOS RP, or 7 stops while you connect it to a digital camera with a 5-axis IBIS sensor, such because the EOS R3, R5, and R6. I examined the lens with the EOS R5 and loved blur-free handheld exposures at durations of as much as 1.6 seconds when specializing in topics a number of ft away. The stabilization is not as efficient at close to distances, although, so I used to be restricted to a shutter velocity of 1/4-second when focusing as shut as potential.
RF 14-35mm L within the Lab
I paired the RF 14-35mm with the 45MP Canon EOS R5 and Imatest software program to test its optical efficiency. At 14mm and f/4, it reveals its weakest lab outcomes; it is wonderful close to the middle of the body (4,200 strains), however mushy towards the perimeters. Narrowing the aperture to f/5.6, f/8, or f/11 (settings which are higher for conventional panorama work anyway), sharpens leads to the middle (4,500 strains) and nets extra element on the edges. Photos shot at f/16 and f/22 aren’t as crisp, a results of diffraction, an impact that causes gentle to scatter because it passes by way of a really small aperture.
See How We Check Cameras and LensesSee How We Check Cameras and Lenses
Sharpness is extra constant from middle to edge when the lens is about to an extended focal size. We examined it at 25mm and 35mm. It produced wonderful outcomes at f/4 (4,100 strains), in addition to stopped all the way down to f/5.6 and f/8 (4,300 strains).
The 14-35mm’s struggles at 14mm are tied to the optical corrections required to compensate for its heavy barrel distortion and optics that do not fairly cowl the complete full-frame sensor—corners are black. When you’re utilizing your digital camera for JPG seize or video, you will not see this problem as a result of the picture processing engine applies distortion and vignette corrections routinely. These fixes include a value—the angle of view is just a little tighter after correction. The distinction is straightforward to see within the comparability above between a Uncooked and JPG seize on the similar publicity.
Uncooked photographers are in additional of a pickle. When you use Adobe Lightroom Basic for processing, you could have entry to a custom-made correction profile. You’ll be able to set it to use routinely when importing pictures into your catalog, or click on it on and off—it is completely efficient, straightening out curved strains and knocking out the vignette. However these fixes aren’t as simple in case your software program would not provide a correction profile. Lightroom’s greatest rival, for instance, Seize One Professional, has been sluggish so as to add profiles for Canon RF lenses. At press time, that software program presents profiles just for the primary batch of Canon’s RF lenses from 2018.
Broad lenses are a superb match for panorama work and getting sharp multi-point sunstars is an oft-desired search for the style. The RF 14-35mm does a superb job delivering that impact at its smallest apertures, netting 18-point sunbursts with crisply outlined edges at f/16 and f/22.
At wider apertures, you’ll be able to simply blur out backgrounds, particularly when working up shut and towards the lengthy finish of the zoom vary. Defocused highlights are largely round, whereas these on the edges of the body present a slight cat’s eye impact at f/4. Rounded aperture blades draw them as circles when set to f/5.6 and smaller settings.
Corrections Aren’t Fairly Clear
Canon succeeded in making the RF 14-35mm F4 L IS USM interesting for photographers preferring to hold a lighter equipment. It is practically half the load as the opposite extensive zoom for the system, the RF 15-35mm F2.8 L IS USM, and nonetheless contains optical stabilization. It is likely to be a stretch for photographers who purchased into the system with the inexpensive EOS RP, nevertheless it’s a superb match for the digital camera in any other case.
If you cannot handle the $1,699 worth, take into account the $299 RF 16mm F2.8 STM in its place—it isn’t constructed to L collection requirements, however that is laborious to complain about given the price. We would like to see Canon launch a extra inexpensive RF zoom to cowl ultra-wide angles.
For photographers much less delicate to cost, the RF 14-35mm lives as much as its L collection bonafides when it comes to its match and end. The lens is each bit as properly made because the RF 15-35mm F2.8. Nonetheless, we’re score the RF 14-35mm just a little decrease than that ultra-wide, as a result of pictures taken on the extensive finish with this lens require corrections in lots of instances—we do not thoughts optical corrections once they’re invisible, however that is not the case right here. Nonetheless, the lens represents an affordable compromise for touring shutterbugs preferring to take Uncooked images (and do not thoughts the additional work) or who primarily shoot JPGs and video.