Canon Announces 4 New L-Series Lenses

Along with the Canon 60D, four new L-Series lenses and two new teleconverters have been announced today.

  • Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM
  • Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM
  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM
  • Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM
  • Canon Extender EF 1.4x III
  • Canon Extender EF 2x III

Additional details and images for each of the lenses are in the press release below.

Canon Press Release

LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., August 26, 2010 – Canon U.S.A., Inc., a leader in digital imaging, rounds out its Summer product introductions with four new L-series lenses and two new accessory extenders for professionals and advanced amateurs. Leading the introductions, the EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM lens is the world’s widest fisheye zoom lens, providing professional photographers and cinematographers with a unique optical tool for capturing 180˚ angle-of-view shots on all EOS Digital SLR cameras. Photographers looking for a broad focal length range with excellent image quality will enjoy the Company’s first L-series 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens, the new EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM lens, delivering outstanding sharpness, contrast and color fidelity in a compact, lightweight form factor. Canon is introducing two new versions of its popular super telephoto lenses, the new EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM and EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM super-telephoto lenses delivering incredible image quality at all apertures for professional photojournalists, sports and wildlife photographers. For professionals and advanced amateurs looking to push their L-series Canon telephotos to the limit, the Company is proud to upgrade its two popular extenders with the new Canon Extender EF 1.4x III and Extender EF 2x III for additional telephoto reach and exceptional clarity. Photographers will immediately notice that the latest Canon L-series telephoto lenses and extenders have a more neutral white tone compared to earlier models. This new shade of white will be used with all L-series telephoto lenses and extenders beginning in the second half of 2010. The introductions of these Canon lenses have been timed with Canon’s latest camera introduction, the Canon EOS 60D Digital SLR camera, designed for advanced amateurs and emerging professional photographers.

“Canon’s core has always been our optics, and we are constantly challenging ourselves to produce better and more advanced optical systems for our customers. These six new products advance the state of the art in Canon lens technology and provide new and innovative tools for professionals and advanced amateur photographers,” stated Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Consumer Imaging Group, Canon U.S.A.

Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM lens

With its unique focal length range, the EF 8-15mm f/4L USM is the world’s widest fisheye zoom lens. It delivers 180§ diagonal angle of view images for all EOS SLR cameras with imaging formats ranging from full-frame to APS-C, and provides 180˚ circular fisheye images for full-frame EOS models. Professional photographers and cinematographers will revel in the unique perspectives afforded to them through this lens, particularly when coupled with the highly popular full-frame EOS 5D Mark II DSLR camera. Canon’s new Fisheye zoom lens features both UD and aspherical lens elements to enhance image quality and is equipped with rubber gaskets and seals to enhance weather resistance. Canon’s proprietary SWC (Sub Wavelength Structure Coating) is used to minimize flare and a new fluorine anti-smear coating is applied to the front and rear elements to make lens cleaning easier than ever.

The Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM lens is expected to be available in January of 2011 for an approximate retail price of $1,400.

Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens

Compact and lightweight, yet durable and professionally sharp, the EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens is the ideal telephoto zoom lens for advanced amateurs looking for that extra reach to bring a subject in tight and close. Providing the power and durability to maximize every shooting opportunity, the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens features two UD ultra-low dispersion glass elements for enhanced sharpness, L-series weather and dust sealing for shooting in harsh conditions, improved mechanical design, and streamlined ergonomics to help avoid inadvertent mode switch operation. The shapes of the lens elements and their coatings have been optimized to minimize ghosting and flare to produce high-contrast and high-resolution throughout the zoom range. A sophisticated floating system optical formula optimizes image quality at all distance settings and reduces minimum focusing distance by more than a foot. An updated optical image stabilization system compensates for camera shake up to an equivalent of four full shutter-speed steps, a full step improvement compared to earlier EF 70-300mm lenses. A new fluorine anti-smear coating is applied to the front and rear elements.

The Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens is expected to be available toward the end of October for an approximate retail price of $1,500.

Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens

The Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM is the 6th generation of a venerable family of Canon 300mm f/2.8 lenses that began in 1974, and have become famous for their exceptional sharpness, contrast and color fidelity. Ideal for a wide range of applications ranging from professional photojournalism and sports photography to nature and wildlife, Canon’s 300mm f/2.8 lenses have always led the industry with new technical advances in every generation. The EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens carries on this tradition with improved image quality, lighter weight, improved Image Stabilization and enhanced durability making it a great option for handheld work in the field. The optical formula of the new lens has been upgraded with the inclusion of two fluorite lens elements for improved image quality and reduced chromatic aberration. Helping to reduce arm fatigue, Canon has reduced the overall weight of the lens by 8 percent to 82.9 oz., making it the lightest weight lens in the Canon EF 300mm f/2.8 series. The Image Stabilizer provides an equivalent of approximately four full shutter speed steps of shake compensation and has been enhanced through the incorporation of a rolling-ball-friction system in place of sliding parts in the compensation optics barrel for a minimum-friction structure. The overall durability of the lens has also been enhanced through increased usage of magnesium alloy and titanium for lens barrel components, together with weather sealing for all exterior joints and switches and a new fluorine anti-smear coating applied to the front and rear elements.

The Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM lens is expected to be available in December for an approximate retail price of $7,000.

Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens

Quintessential for many sports assignments including baseball, football, soccer and golf, Canon’s professional 400mm f/2.8 lenses provide the light gathering capability and long telephoto reach that photographers need to freeze the action and fill the frame . The Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM is the 5th generation in Canon’s 400mm f/2.8 series and the successor to the current EF 400mm introduced in 1999. The new lens has been engineered for the ultimate in optical performance through the use of two fluorite lens elements for improved quality and reduced chromatic aberration. Helping photographers in the field, Canon has reduced the overall weight of the lens by a substantial 28 percent from 189.4 oz to 135.8 oz, making it Canon’s lightest weight 400mm f/2.8 lens ever. The Image Stabilizer provides an equivalent of approximately four full shutter speed steps of shake compensation and has been enhanced through the incorporation of a rolling-ball-friction system in place of sliding parts in the compensation optics barrel for a minimum-friction structure. The overall durability of the lens has also been enhanced through increased usage of magnesium alloy and titanium for lens barrel components, together with weather sealing for all exterior joints and switches and a new fluorine anti-smear coating is applied to the front and rear elements.

The Canon EF 400mm f/2.8L IS USM lens is expected to be available in December for an approximate retail price of $11,000.

Canon Extender EF 1.4x III & Canon Extender EF 2x III

The two new EF extenders are direct replacements of the current extenders offered by Canon as essential accessories for professionals. These new extenders have been designed to provide faster autofocusing and improved autofocus precision with compatible EF lenses. Each extender includes an anomalous dispersion lens element for reduced chromatic aberration and enhanced optical image quality. Each extender also features a newly developed microcomputer that increases AF precision when the extenders are used with a IS Series II EF super-telephoto lens. Both extenders are equipped with rubber gaskets and seals to enhance weather resistance. A new fluorine anti-smear coating is applied to the front and rear elements of both extenders.

The Canon Extender EF 1.4x III & Canon Extender EF 2x III are expected to be available in December for an approximate retail price of $500 each.

New Lens Features

In addition to an anti-reflection multi-coating, the front and rear elements of all newly announced EF lenses and extenders are treated with Canon’s new fluorine anti-smear lens coating. The fluorine layer is highly oil- and water-repellent so that any oil smears or water droplets on the lens can be wiped off quickly and easily without the aid of solvents using a soft dry cloth. These four new lenses and two new extenders are the first of their type to employ fluorine coating, and it is expected that this new feature will enhance the usability of the lenses during adverse shooting conditions.

The new Series II EF super-telephoto lenses can correct camera shake up to four full shutter speed steps, compared to two shutter speed steps for the original versions. This improvement is made possible by a new low-friction stabilizer mechanism that is not only more efficient than the previous design but also smaller and lighter. Other enhancements to the IS systems of both new super telephoto lenses have enabled quieter operation ideal for use during video capture.

Providing professional sports and wildlife photographers with greater tracking flexibility, Canon has introduced a third Image Stabilization mode option to its new EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II USM and EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM lenses. When mode 3 is selected on the lens, the image stabilization effect will not be seen in the viewfinder. When the shutter button is pressed halfway, the lens will begin detecting camera or lens movement and only during exposure, when the shutter is fully depressed, will the Image Stabilization engage and provide the equivalent of four stops faster compensation for blur-free images. The new Mode 3 is particularly useful when a photographer does not want to see the IS working in the viewfinder while tracking a moving subject.

Helping moviemakers achieve smoother and more appealing focus shifts when filming on EOS DSLR cameras, Canon has included a new Power Focus (PF) mode on the Company’s two new super telephoto lenses. This mode allows manual rack focusing to be operated smoothly by turning a playback ring that is normally used for the focus preset function. Both low-speed and high-speed focus shifting are available.

Additionally, a new security slot attachment has been included on both new super-telephoto lenses to allow a wire-type security lock to be easily affixed, a great safety feature for professionals shooting from high vantage points above arenas and crowds.