The Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM is a wide-angle EF zoom lens. Often used for reportage, landscape photography. Actually, it is an update to the previous version. The old 16-35 was scolded for the terrible image quality at the edge of the frame of full-frame cameras. Varifocal lens. Wide angle as it is, with all its advantages and disadvantages. But first things first.

Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM
The image quality of this lens - worthy of class L. Works well in backlighting. Highlights, if they appear, are small. Native hood, honestly, stupid. However, it is able to protect the lens from sun exposure at certain angles. I didn’t wear it as the lens is great outdoors. The lens is focused instantly, focusing errors, due to, again, a large depth of field, a minimum.
When installed on a cropped camera, the lens becomes, of course, something like the 25-56, but at the same time, everything also tightens the corners at the edges of the frame - the purpose is affected. Shooting a reportage with this lens - you are always in the thick of things. You cannot bring the subject as close to you as possible, since all values ​​on the focal length scale are wide-angle (16-35).

Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM

You can only choose how wide the angle you want (16 or 35 mm). By the way, the lens provides for work with waterproof devices - on the ring bayonet there is a rubber skirt. However, I have doubts that without a protective filter it makes sense to shoot with this glass in bad weather - the front lens moves back and forth when the focal length is changed. The lens, moreover, it seems to me, because of this, is a potential vacuum cleaner. But the back wall is sealed. The back element does not change its position during operation. Protective filters for the lens should be bought in a thin frame, since at 16mm and close to them, with other filters, you will see the filter ring in the photo. The thread, by the way, is the same as that of the new 24-70, 82 mm. This makes the filters for this lens very expensive. Any.


Canon's 16-35 L II USM MDF is only 28 centimeters. But at the same time, the lens collects a huge area of ​​the surrounding space on the matrix. That is, if we need to separate some small object from the background, one way or another, we will have to crop the image in post-processing. Infinity y lens comes in fact after one and a half meters, this is even reported by a window on the body with a distance to the object.
Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM

Depth of field, sharpness and color

Sharpness at an open aperture, and in principle, up to f5.6, is unevenly distributed over the frame. Up to f5.6 it is very good in the center, but quickly fades to the edges of the frame. Even at wide open, the Canon 16-35 L II USM depth of field very big. Due to the large depth of field, the lens also allows shooting from the hip or from the waist. Useful for street photography. Colors are good, with minimal editing required in post-processing. Um, editing is only required when the photographer's hands are twisted to set the correct settings before pressing the shutter button. The lens is definitely not for artistic photography. But in nature and in the report, he is able to work miracles. Not a single reportage zoom lens with long focal lengths will be able to convey the atmosphere so effectively.
Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM


In the Canon 16-35 L II USM, strong vignetting follows us in all focal areas. Very strong at a wide angle. It is clear that this is removed in post-processing, but I left it sometimes in order to hide the severely falling sharpness at the edges.

Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM

Build quality and features

Chassis lens combined, plastic + metal. The ring at the end of the bezel is metallic, as is bayonet... The rest of the body is made of plastic. Two rings - focus and zoom are rubberized. On my Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM both rings were in good condition. There are specimens with degraded rubber bands on the rings. But that - from the sweaty hands of the photographer.

Purchase recommendations

If you are doing street photography, or shooting landscapes, then it is better for you lens universal and not to be found, since the lens has, in contrast to the same 17-40 f / 4, better sharpness and, in addition, 16-35 2.8 a stop lighter. Despite the fact that the 16-35 II was released in 2007, and its first version was even earlier, the lenses are quite popular. What can I say, even if the Canon EF 16-35 L II USM is very rare on the market.
The best use of this lens that I've seen is using a wide angle to give it a sense of presence, as well as the effect of a huge space filling the frame behind the subject.
Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM

Canon EF 16-35 L II USM Alternatives

Comparing three versions of Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L, I came to the conclusion that the maximum image quality on a full frame, of course, will give its latest version. The new 16-35 has significantly improved the image quality in the corners and closer to the edge of the frame there is no longer such a strong difference in sharpness in the center.

By focal length:

Sample Canon EF 16-35mm f / 2.8 L USM Photos and Videos

Canon 16-35mm f / 2.8 L II USM gives a decent picture. For group portraits, portraits in general, my personal opinion is that the lens is not suitable due to strong distortion. In principle, at 24-35 millimeters of focal length, you can contrive if necessary, but in this case, you will have to carefully control the position of people in the frame, if the quality of the shooting, of course, worries you.

Canon 6d and Canon EF 16-35 L II USM

Photos from 16-35 II to 60d

Sample video on Canon EF 16-35 L II USM


Overall - Canon EF 16-35L II USM quite specific, but it allows you to take photographs, as they say, with the effect of presence. By working smartly with perspective and using the properties of wide-angle optics, you can get very interesting pictures. However, when looking at a series of reportage photographs taken using only wide-angle lens, begins to ripple in the eyes. Well, in general, for use with a staff, I would not recommend it, because, again, a wide angle. Even on a crop, despite the fact that EGF will be approximately 28-55mm, such a limitation of the field of view does not eliminate the inherent in this series of lenses, proprietary distortions. They are felt even on the crop.

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