A Viewfinder Darkly

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Canon 35mm L II series lens with Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics

September 8 2015

by Philip Northeast

Canon have redesigned the 35mm L II series wide angle lens, including new optical technology to reduce colour fringing or chromic aberration.

“We continually strive to achieve the ideal lens performance, which has driven the development of Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics, found in the new EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM lens” said Yuichi Ishizuka of Canon U.S.A., Inc.

Canon 35mm L II lens

Canon 35mm L II lens

A camera lens controls the image by bending  or refracting, light rays.   Natural light, or white light, is a combination of wavelengths, or light colours. Each wavelength is refracted differently when passing through a plain glass lens. This results in all the colours not converging on the same point, this causes chromatic aberrations, or colour fringing, in an image.

The molecular design of Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics (BR Optics) refracts blue light (short wavelength spectrum) more than existing optical technologies including UD glass, Super UD glass and Fluorite. This gives  lens designers greater control over colour fringing. Placing the BR Optics material between  conventional optical glass  convex and concave lens elements helps to produce sharper images with outstanding contrast and colour fidelity by reducing axial chromatic aberration.

Blue Spectrum Optics

Blue Spectrum Optics

The new lens is has more lens elements and is larger and heavier than its predecessor,  indicating the new design is more than including the BR Optics.  This suggests Canon’s designers have prioritised optical performance over convenience.

As with all L-series lenses, this new lens is highly resistant to dust and water – making it ideal for outdoor photography, even in harsh conditions.

The L series are Canon’s premium lenses. Manufacturers try not to make it obvious that there is significant   quality difference between their best lenses aimed at serious photographers  and the modestly priced versions aimed at the budget conscious photographer.

Pricing and Availability

The new Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM lens is compatible with 72mm filters and will be supplied with Lens Hood EW-77B and Lens Pouch LP1219. It is scheduled to be available in October 2015, for an estimated retail price of $1,799.00.

Check Adorama for current pricing and availability


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