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Canon 16-35 f4 L

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I was wondering if anyone has used the new canon 16-35 f4 L lens yet? I am curious to see how much of an improvement it is over the 17-40mm. And if it's worth the upgrade. I know on land it is getting great reviews. But behind a dome is a different beast.

 

Particularly wondering if anyone has used it in a ikelite setup.

 

Everytime I use the 17-40mm I get upset at how bad the image is. And say I will never use it again...I like fish eyes, and the distortion doesn't bug me. But I am going to Truk in March and think the distortion and wrecks won't mix well.

 

Any help or advice would be appreciated.

 

Dustin

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I have been using this lens for several months, mostly with a Superdome. I have tried different port extensions. I started out with 55mm, the same as the 16-35 II lens. I also tried 60 and 65mm. There seemed to be a slight improvement with 65mm which is what used for the attached shot. I selected this shot for this thread because it has relatively bright Coho Salmon (with well delineated scales) that were near the edge and corner. Shot at 16mm and f/8 @ ISO1600 using aperture priority - available light only. One pic is of the whole frame, other pix are blow-ups of parts. The color fringing is due to the ripples on the surface refracting the sunlight.

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It looks like this lens has the same minimum focusing distance as the 16-35/f2.8 ii and the 17-40/f4, so I'd expect the performance related to the dome to be similar. Image quality of the lens overall does sound better though. Also, for underwater behind a dome f/4 vs f/2.8 doesn't matter much since you're stopped down so much.

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It looks like this lens has the same minimum focusing distance as the 16-35/f2.8 ii and the 17-40/f4, so I'd expect the performance related to the dome to be similar. Image quality of the lens overall does sound better though. Also, for underwater behind a dome f/4 vs f/2.8 doesn't matter much since you're stopped down so much.

Differences in flatness of field can make a difference. The virtual image is concave. If the the lens has a convex field it is problematic. Flat would be better than convex. Also the position of the entrance pupil can vary such that one lens will focus closer (when properly installed behind a dome port) than another in the same dome even if the minimal focus distance is the same.

The new lens incorporates new tech that will improve performance on both the long and short term - see lens rentals blogs on this:

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2014/07/canon-wide-angle-zoom-comparison

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2014/07/of-course-we-took-one-apart

Edited by Tom_Kline

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Here is another shot. I set up the housing with the smaller (than Superdome) Wideport as I was expecting shallow water. It turned out that I probably could have used the Superdome at this spot ;->>. The curvature of the virtual image is related to the dome radius of curvature. The Wideport has an obvious smaller radius than the Superdome. Seacam does not specify either. I used the same port extension as above, 65mm, and shot at f/8 with flash. One pic is of the whole frame and there are two blow-ups. One shows the eye in focus but not the tip of the snout whereas sediment behind the fish (~ 0.3 to 0.5 m) is sharp. The other blow-up is from the right side. One can see a zone of sharpness running diagonally from lower left to upper right. This is due to effects of the image plane falling behind the concave virtual image - the peripheral parts of the image are back-focused. One can get away with using a smaller dome like this but one must try to have the subject fit the in-focus zones if possible.

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Thanks for the images Thomas. By the looks of things it seems to be an improvement. How much though over the 17-40mm? Is it worth the upgrade?

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I been testing 16-35mm f4 topside with f2.8 II. New f4 is sharper corner and have better lens coating (better sunball).

I couldn't try it behind dome but still if I don't have f2.8 then I would buy f4. IMHO, both lens will give you better sharpness and contrast then 17-40.

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I agree with Tom and Eun Jae. The 16-35IS is the better optical lens overall.

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Thanks for the images Thomas. By the looks of things it seems to be an improvement. How much though over the 17-40mm? Is it worth the upgrade?

My upgrade path was from the close-focusing Sigma 20/1.8 and 28/1.8 lenses. It is worth it thus far for these advantages: one lens instead of two, faster focusing, and weather sealing. The Sigmas work rather well optically when housed for under water use. I have no personal experience with the 17-40.

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Interesting stuff, compared to the 16-35 II how do you compare it with regards to corner sharpness?

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Interesting stuff, compared to the 16-35 II how do you compare it with regards to corner sharpness?

 

I find better corner with 16-35 f/4 then f/2.8L II but maybe it's negligible behind the dome.

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To update this thread, I recently purchased the new 16-35mm F4 L wide angle lens in discussion. I found it to be a major step up from the 17-40mm. The sharpness of the lens is really quite good despite the rectilinear lens and dome issues that are known to happen. I can't comment on how photos look, as I only do video, but the performance was quite good with the 5dmarkII video. I also used the IS on the lens which I found did help a bit with getting a bit more stable footage.

 

I am normally satisfied with a fisheye, but going to Truk I didn't want the curved lines on the ships. I am quite pleased with the result. Here is a sample video...

 

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