It's been years since I've gotten truly excited about a Canon lens release, but I've been watching the Pancake since the minute (yes, I stayed up late for the official Canon announcement), it was officially revealed.
Today, I bought a copy of it and I absolutely love it...here are some first impressions, pictures and other musings.
First off, I tried 3 lenses, as the first two seemed to back-focus a little bit. Not a huge amount, nothing a bit of MA can't take care of, but I wanted it to be PERFECT. Sadly, the shop owner was incredibly rude, and I had to almost get into a fight with him to try the third one (despite showing him pictures of what was going on, and showing him that it wasn't my body, as the 100 f2 I had with me focused perfectly). Anyways...I got a killer sharp copy:
All images unedited in any way, SOOC, (unless otherwise noted). Taken with a 5D Classic, handheld, no MLU, no remote, etc...
Standard battery test (batteries about 1-2 cm apart, 45* angle in a line, focus on second from left), f2.8, ISO 100:
IMG_1407 by canonzenit, on Flickr
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/7520517044/
IMG_1407-100crop by canonzenit, on Flickr
These pictures showed me more than just the fact that this lens is VERY sharp. As you can tell, there are a few things that would make other lenses (such as the 85 1.8) scream with purple Chromatic Abberation: around the chrome top of the battery and around the black and blue letters on the white background many lenses exhibit some form of CA, especially wide open. As you can see, there's absolutely NOTHING here. It's incredibly clean, despite the fact that the lighting was rather harsh. Further, the background bokeh, while not nearly as nice as on my 100 f2, is pleasing and smooth. Lastly, contrast is surprisingly high, despite being wide open. I couldn't really ask for more!
Real-world sharpness is...well out of this world. I haven't had time yet (and I had my 16-35L II at home), but I'm going to throw this lens up against the L and see how it fares, but I have a feeling it'll do rather well.
I don't have time to post my into-the-light pictures, but I haven't managed to get this little guy to flare at all yet, so no worries on that front.
Shot from the roof of my friend's building...f6.3 ISO 100 ...note not only the sharpness, but the crisp contrast and awesome colours!
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/7520498832/
IMG_1463 by canonzenit, on Flickr
100% crops, including corners:
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/7520499030/
1463-100crops by canonzenit, on Flickr
It's absolutely ridiculously sharp. There was one part of the image where you can see the shadow of a wire clothes drier inside that building.
Playing air hockey in Korea! Just a quick test picture (tiny bit of motion blur, I think) at f2.8, ISO 400...the colours/contrast on this lens are amazing!
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/7520498258/
IMG_1470 by canonzenit, on Flickr
And for the fun of it...two extremely mildly edited pictures...this one is a pano from my friend's rooftop (no sharpening, like 2% contrast and a tiny bit of shadow/highlights adjustment and I think 1% saturation added)
IMAGE LINK: http://www.flickr.com …/56150019@N07/7520665006/
ChangwonRooftopPanoJuly7-1 by canonzenit, on Flickr
And last...just messing around in my friend's apartment building...I absolutely LOVE this FL...not too wide, but not too long either...zero regrets buying this little thing:
f2.8, ISO 1600
I'll have more pictures, but it's midnight here, and I want to get to bed so I can get a good day's worth of wandering/shooting in tomorrow (30 degrees and sunshine? Bring it on!!) Hope this helps you guys! ...if you're on the fence about it...get it! You won't be disappointed. This lens gets compared to the 50 1.8 a lot...they're not even in the same league. The Nifty is soft and weak (low contrast, etc) wide open and is built like a Fisher Price toy. This lens looks and feels like a real lens and performs top-notch right from 2.8 on. I got it for less than the US retail price ($192 out the door!)...and it's the best money I've spent on photography in a long time.