Canon EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM review: The ideal standard zoom?

By David Newton - Thursday, February 07, 2013

Lens Review
Introduction | Canon EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens performance | Canon EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM versus competition | Conclusion

Introduced in November 2012 as the proposed ‘kit’ lens for the EOS 6D, the EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens represents an interesting move for Canon – despite two well respected lenses in this category, the EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM and the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, the EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM hopes to offer a compact, lightweight lens suitable for the newly created lightweight, full-frame camera segment. The red L-series band offers the promise of professional performance, but does it live up to the expectations?

A standard zoom lens is the one lens that almost all photographers will have in their bag. This makes it a very interesting area for the manufacturers, as there is a potentially huge market for the lenses. Equally, since we no longer receive 35mm or 50mm prime lenses as a kit lens with cameras, the standard focal length zoom lens is an ideal replacement. By offering an L-Series lens with the EOS 6D, Canon is clearly hoping to indoctrinate new users in the benefits of the L-series over lesser quality lenses.

Along with the red L-series band around the front of the lens, the EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM benefits from Canon’s mature Image Stabilizer technology, including a hybrid facility to works not just in normal shooting, where it offers 4-stops of IS, but also in macro shooting, where it provides up to 2.5stops of IS. There is also the inclusion of the well-respected UltraSonic Motor (USM) AF motor for fast, quiet autofocus. Whether it is more than the sum of its parts or not, though, will only be shown by the test results.

Canon EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM lens performance

Canon EF24-70mm f/4L IS USM versus competition

Conclusion