So I have been looking for a copy of this lens since they came out...I finally found a second-hand one in a store in Busan, South Korea and snapped off a few frames. This is by no means a scientific review, but since there's so little information about this lens, I thought I'd add whatever I can. Quick first impressions:
- The build quality is excellent. I think it matches or exceeds most of Canons's non-L line-up.
- Despite this lens being designed for 1.5/1.6x crop bodies, it worked perfectly on my 1.3x APS-H body with no visible light fall-off, even at f2.
- The copy I was trying front-focused MOST of the time...though once or twice it appeared to get it right. The front focus wasn't bad, but noticeable for macro work at f2 (scroll down for pics). EDIT: For those of us with Micro Adjust-capable cameras, this shouldn't be a problem, what little the lens was off by is well within MA range.
- Purple/orange fringing was minimal but present at f2...however, it disappeared by even f2.2-2.5.
- Not having the barrel extend during focusing is awesome, and a rarity with many lower-end macros
- Focusing is not nearly as quick or quiet as USM. It's accurate, but it takes its sweet time (I'm guessing a focus-limit switch would help this)...also, there's a bit of bzzzt-bzzzt as it focuses, which, at first, was a little annoying after my 16-35L II and the Tamron 70-300 VC USD, but not nearly as bad as my old Tamron 17-50 f2.8 was.
Samples: Straight off the card, shot with a 1D Mark III. No PP of any kind done.
@ f2...slight front focus (focus point was set on the "6" in the phone number)...however, surprisingly sharp and lacks serious CA
TV3_8627 by canonzenit, on Flickr
@ f4 ...very sharp and still great amounts/quality of bokeh...
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/6297261360/
TV3_8636 by canonzenit, on Flickr
@ f2 ... impromptu portrait of my friend (just wanted to see what the lights in the background look like)...nothing spectacular, but certainly makes a good portrait lens in a pinch
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TV3_8639 by canonzenit, on Flickr
@ f2 ...ever so slight front focus (focus was set on the "C" in Ultrasonic, looks like it really focused on the border between the "I" and the "C") and slight fringing around the letters, not bad considering it's wide open with some very harsh lights being reflected by the letters
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/6297260534/
TV3_8633 by canonzenit, on Flickr
Hope this helps some of you guys looking at this lens. I'm considering buying that copy, though it's a little expensive, so I might wait 'till I'm back in Canada for a visit in a few months.