Canon 8-15mm fisheye lens announced
In an exciting new development for underwater photography, Canon announces a full-frame 8-15mm fisheye zoom lens. The lens is a F4 constant aperture zoom. The constant aperture is very useful for low-light natural light photography, shooting in manual mode. It also has a built in auto-focus motor, not that important on fisheye lenses. It boasts 14 lens elements in 11 groups.
This lens will be a great new option for full-frame Canon underwater photographers, and will also work well on cropped-sensor Canon cameras.
Circular and traditional fisheye views with the Canon 8-15mm fisheye
This lens will boat circular and full-frame fisheye views on a full-frame camera. wow!
The specs on the canon website state a close-focus distance of 6.2 inches, or 16cm. This compares to 5.5 inches, 14cm for the Tokina 10-17mm. These distances are from the sensor plane, so like the Tokina the Canon fisheye should focus very close to the lens.
Tokina 10-17mm lens replacement?
I think it is unlikely. For cropped-sensor users, I think Tokina got the focal length range right, 10-17mm is quite a useful range, and I'm not sure people will find the 8-15mm range more useful. A 10mm fisheye is quite wide already and difficult enough to light. Also, the price of the lens is right.
Canon 8-15mm fisheye lens price, availability
Expect this lens to be expensive. Around $1400 in the USA, even more expensive in Europe - I saw £1499.99 reported. Available in January 2011.
Full Press Release for the Canon 8-15mm fisheye
London, UK, 26 August 2010 –
Canon today unveils the world’s first fisheye zoom lens offering both circular and full frame images, thanks to an extreme wide-angle focal range of 8-15mm. Replacing the EF 15mm f/2.8 fisheye, the new EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM is the latest addition to Canon’s L-series range of professional lenses, providing outstanding image quality, constant aperture throughout the zoom range and a robust design for reliable shooting in challenging weather conditions.
When paired with Canon’s full-frame DSLR bodies, such as the EOS 5D Mark II or the EOS -1Ds Mark III, professional photographers can choose to capture circular or full-frame fisheye images, allowing them to view a scene in a completely new and unique way. This new level of choice provides enhanced creative flexibility when shooting scenes such as the night sky, where the full 180º horizontal and vertical fields of view (FOV) allow every detail to be captured with incredible clarity in one single image.
When used with EOS bodies featuring APS-C or APS-H sensors, the EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM produces a more traditional, full frame fisheye view. A zoom-lock mechanism on the lens body allows the range to be limited to the focal length that ensures the best possible full-frame view without unsightly vignetting around the edge. ‘C’ and ‘H’ markings can be found next to the zoom operation ring, indicating the wide-angle zoom position where vignette-free shooting is possible with either sensor, allowing photographers to achieve optimum results with any EOS body.
Advanced optics for professional imaging
The EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM showcases over 70 years of Canon’s optical engineering heritage, boasting 14 lens elements in 11 different groups, including one aspherical and one Ultra-low Dispersion (UD) element to correct chromatic aberration and produce high-quality, high-contrast shots with excellent colour reproduction.
Ghosting and flare caused by strong light sources can be a particular challenge when shooting at such a wide angle, and, in order to counteract these artefacts, all lens elements have been covered with Canon’s Super Spectra Coating. The inner surface of the front element also features Canon’s SubWavelength Structure Coating (SWC), which uses tiny cone-like structures, shorter than the wavelength of visible light on the surface of the lens element, to gradually slow light down until it is at the same speed as it travels through glass, removing the risk of flare occurring before the light reaches the sensor.
To maintain optimum image quality, the front and rear lens elements also feature a Fluorine Coating which actively repels water, dust and dirt, making it easier to clean the lens and leaving it unobstructed by particles.
Fast, accurate focusing and low light performance
The ultra-wide angle zoom of the EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM offers a fresh take on sporting action or architecture shots, while the constant f/4.0 aperture allows faster shutter speeds to be employed for natural-looking images in low light.
A ring-type ultrasonic motor (USM), provides quick and accurate focusing when shooting and enables a full-time manual focus functionality allowing photographers to adjust the focus of any shot, even when the AF system is activated, for even greater control over image capture and improved creative flexibility.
Built for professional performance
The EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM features a high-grade physical design that reflects its elite performance. High resistance to both dust and water enables it to be used in a range of challenging situations, and, when used with a professional EOS body, it allows continued shooting in the harshest weather conditions. The external design also features the new exterior texture, for a high quality look and feel indicative of all new L-series models.
High quality accessories
The EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM is supplied with a dedicated lens cap, lens pouch and a felt-lined lens hood EW-77 for use when using the zoom at the 15mm setting, preventing lens flare.