Canon’s EF 100mm f/2.8 USM macro lens is compatible with both full-frame and APS-C D-SLRs that use the EF and EF-S lens mounts. Coupled to the latter, you’ll have a 1.6x crop factor to take into consideration, so if you’re going to be attaching it to a Canon D-SLR such as an EOS 600D, 60D or 7D it’ll work out at a 160mm f/2.8 macro in 35mm film terms.
Released in March 2000, this lens manages to offer most of the features you’d expect in its price bracket. Constructed with 12 elements in 8 groups, the focusing system is the internal type, meaning the front element remains fixed in position and doesn’t extend or rotate.
Feeling solid and well weighted, there are two switches on the side and, despite the MF/AF switch being rather small, it stands proud and is easy to locate by touch alone. The switch next to it is used to limit the focusing distance between infinity and 48cm (equivalent to a 1:3 reproduction ratio) when you don’t want to focus down to its 31cm minimum focus distance. The large focus ring is smooth over half a turn and to keep AF quiet, there’s Canon’s Ultrasonic Motor (USM). AF performance was impressive, locking onto subjects accurately with minimal fuss at high speed. For £425 this lens represents excellent value for money.
- Street price: £399 (As of July 2016)
- Weight: 600g
- Mount: Canon EF
- Visit: www.canon.co.uk
This review was first published in the October 2011 issue of Digital Photo - download back issues here.