LensRentals tests Canon’s new 40mm pancake prime


posted Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 3:57 PM EDT

Canon's EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake prime lens. Photo provided by Canon.Alongside the launch of the Canon Rebel T4i earlier this month, the company also unveiled two new lens models with stepping autofocus motors. The EF-S 18-135mm STM is a variant of the existing 18-135mm design, and so optically speaking, we pretty much know what to expect there. The EF 40mm f/2.8 STM prime is a different beast, though. It's a brand-new design, and Canon's first pancake-type. That makes it by far the smallest first-party EF-mount lens, barely more than half the length of the EF 50mm f/1.8 II.

The first shipments of the EF 40mm STM are hitting the streets as we speak. Roger Cicala, founder of LensRentals.com has already gotten his hands on a dozen or so of them, and as the company does with all its lenses to ensure quality before shipping them out as rentals, he's run them through Norman Koren's Imatest suite to establish a baseline for performance. The result can be seen now in a blog post entitled "Canon 40mm pancake--How did they do that?"

We won't spoil the verdict here, except to say that Roger's impressed. (And with as many lenses as he sees, you can take that as a good sign that it's worthy of a closer look!)

Hop on over to the LensRentals blog for the full story, including Roger's thoughts on build quality, handling, sharpness, and more... (And if you're still not sold, LensRentals will of course be happy to rent you one, so you can take it for a test drive yourself.)

The Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM is the company's first EF-mount pancake prime. Photo provided by Canon.

The Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM is the company's first EF-mount pancake prime.
Photo provided by Canon.