Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM review

According provided by lens Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM and extension rings huge thanks to the online store 'Photolavka', where you can buy a lens in Sevastopol.

Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM review

Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM review

The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is one of the first lenses from Canon to feature the extraordinary 'STM' stepping motor technology. STM - STepper Motor - stepping motor or focusing stepping motor. STM was supposed to improve the quality of focusing when shooting video, special attention is paid to smooth focusing. Focusing is really smooth and smooth. To my surprise, the STM in the Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 is noisy. The noise level is negligible, but still easy to hear. It is stated that STM is a special technology that allows you to get silent focusing, which is very important when shooting video, in fact this is not entirely true.

View of the tiny front lens of the lens, as well as the view of the lens enlightenment.

View of the tiny front lens of the lens, as well as the view of the lens enlightenment.

The lens has an AF / MF focus mode switch. In auto AF mode, instant manual focus compensation is available. The focus ring of the Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is not rubberized and is not mechanically connected to the focusing system. The lens uses electromechanical manual focus (electronically-driven in Western literature). This means that in manual MF focusing mode, the lens can only be focused on the camera.

It seemed strange enough to me:

  1. The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM lengthens the trunk when focusing. The lens trunk cannot be hidden manually on a detached lens. In the removed position, or on the camera turned off, the lens focus ring does not focus :)
  2. There is a microscopic lag of the focusing ring (reaction delay) when the ring rotates in one or the other direction.
  3. Manual focus speed directly depends on the STM system, and not on the speed of the photographer’s hand movements :).
  4. In manual focus mode, the STM system buzzes significantly louder than in AF mode. The noise also has a different character when you rotate the focus ring of the Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM, it buzzes like a transformer :)
  5. In manual mode, the lens consumes camera energy, since the focus ring is not mechanically connected to the lens block, and an electric drive is still used to move it.
  6. In auto focus mode, manual focus compensation is only available in certain camera focus modes (on my Canon 350D - One Shot, Ai Focus) and only when the focus button on the camera is pressed. In fact, due to the fact that manual focus adjustment can only be made when the shutter button is pressed halfway, talking about the constant possibility of manual focus correction is simply impossible. All this focusing gimmick spoils the impression of the lens a little.
  7. The STM system can reach its full potential only on cameras with a hybrid focus system. When I wrote this review, only Canon 650D, 700D, 70D и 100D had specially designed sensors for improved focus when shooting video.
  8. The lens does not have a focus distance scale, a trifle, but still.
Rear view of the lens. Metal bayonet mount.

Rear view of the lens. Metal bayonet mount.

The front lens does not rotate when focusing. The focusing speed is above average, but I can not say that it is fast. If you slowly rotate the 'electronic' focusing ring, then its step will be 360 ​​degrees. The minimum focusing distance is only 30 cm, while you can take macro pictures with a magnification of 1: 5.5. By and large, the 'Macro 0.3m / 0.98ft' lettering on the lens simply speaks of MDF, not true macro capability. Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM uses a 7-blade aperture.

This is what the lens looks like on the Canon EOS 350D. Lens with maximally protruded trunk focused on MDF

This is how the lens looks on Canon EOS 350D. Lens with maximally protruded trunk focused on MDF

The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM lens is called 'pancake' (or 'Pancake') and is very small and lightweight. The most amazing thing is that this baby is suitable for full-length 'fat' cameras. The lens weighs just 130 grams and uses a standard 52mm filter diameter. The lens does not have a mount for a modern “snap-on” hood, so you can only install a hood that is screwed into the thread for the light filter. The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is manufactured in Malaysia and began production in the summer of 2012. The build is good - the lens barrel is made of plastic with metal mount. Impressions from the Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM are much nicer than from Canon EF 50mm F / 1.8 IIbut worse than from SMC Pentax-DA 1: 2.8 40mm Limited.

Everything is relative. Our pancake and Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM

Everything is relative. Our pancake and Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM

Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is not very large aperture f/2.8. For example, F / 2.8 is only 1.56 times better than F / 3.5 for 'regular' inexpensive zooms. When used on Canon full-frame cameras, the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM can serve as a standard fix. On Canon APS-C 1.6X crop EGF lens becomes 64mm. How convenient would it be to use EGF everyone decides for himself. EGF and good bokeh on cropped cameras allows you to shoot portraits. In my opinion, it is much more suitable for cropped cameras as a regular fixed lens Sigma AF 30mm f / 1.4 EX DC HSM, but his price is several times higher. Canon also has patents for 4 similar pancake lenses with focal lengths of 45, 39 (40), 35, 28mm and maximum aperture F / 2.8. I wonder why it was decided to produce exactly 40 mm fixes?

The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is just a tad larger than its rear cover

The Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM is just a tad larger than its back cover

On my camera Canon 350D the lens turned out to be sharp, with imperceptible distortion and vignetting. Chromatic aberrations weak and the lens tolerates back and side light well. In general, the lens has excellent image quality, which is not surprising for a fixed lens with a not very large aperture. Also, the lens has a good bokeh.

The parameters of the photo in the review:
All shot on Canon EOS 350D using protective filter Hoya HMC (UV) 52mm. On-camera JPEG L, high quality. Noise reduction at slow shutter speeds was turned off. Parameters: contrast correction - 0, sharpness - 0, saturation - 0, tone color - 0. Used white balance: 'Shadow' and 'Cloudy'. The size of the photos has been reduced to 3 MP.

Optical design of the lens - 6 elements in 4 groups, one aspherical element

Optical design - 6 elements in 4 groups, with one aspherical.

Since the Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM has good sharpness, this lens can be used with macro rings for macro photography. Together with the lens they sent me a kit macro rings Meike Macro Extension Tube For Canon (such) with auto focus support. The rings are made up of 3 pieces of different lengths: 13mm, 21mm and 31mm. You can create 7 combinations of different lengths for different magnifications. The rings come with an A4 sheet with instructions in English. Meike rings are made in China and have a 'cheap plastic' feel. There are two covers with rings. The rings do not have very convenient retainers, but such rings are quite suitable for their tasks. I used a Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM with only one shortest ring at 13mm:

Lens prices in popular stores can look at this link, or in the price block below:

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Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM - great lens... It's sharp, super-compact, fast, inexpensive, good for video shooting, fast enough focusing and good build. I would definitely buy myself such a lens for a 'baby camera' Canon 100D. Canon EF 40mm f / 2.8 STM can serve as a regular lens, it is easy to take it with you on vacation, camping, any event :). Among the shortcomings, I highlight a slightly strange manual focus mode and not very large aperture for a similar fixed lens.

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Comments: 153, on the topic: Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM review

  • Elena

    Tell me which lens to choose for canon 100d, ef 40mm or ef 50mm

    • Arkady Shapoval

      In addition to 18-55, the Canon 50 / 1.8 STM is better.

      • Elena

        Thank you.

      • Artem

        Do you justify your arguments somehow?

        • Novel

          40 mm is not the most convenient focal length for a crop. In this form factor, 24 / 2.8 will be much more convenient - it is more versatile. And 50 / 1.8 will be more than a stop lighter and on the crop it will be a good portrait lens with pleasant blur.

  • Novel

    please tell me, if you choose between 40mm f2,8 stm and 50mm f1,8 stm for equal cost, which option will be better?

  • igor

    I want to say many thanks !!! to you personally
    I’m glad) I bought this lens according to your review, I am pleased to disgrace))

  • anonym

    Knowledgeable people, please tell me which is better to buy a portrait portrait for Canon 7D?

    • Vadim

      On a budget, the best option is perhaps 50 / 1.8. On a budget, this is a really worthwhile option.

    • Andrei

      35 mm is best suited, since crop factor 1,6 on this model makes sense, if you do not want to leave the wall from neighbors from 50 mm to the neighbors, it is best to take 35 mm or this pancake, as an option :)

  • Sinitsyn Andrey

    Good afternoon, comrades. I have Canon 5d Mark 2, but I have neither a regular lens, nor autofocus in general. So far, only Helios 44-2. Torn between 50mm 1.8 and 40mm 2.8. The tasks are simple: everyday at home, sometimes a full-length studio photo.

    Tell me, which lens will be better?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      with the forty it will be more convenient, but in general, you can find any cheap staffer for $ 150, like tamron 28-75 / 2.8 or old sigm 28-70 / 2.8

      • Sinitsyn Andrey

        Thanks for the answer. There are a lot of staffers in my city, and there are not many magpies and half-lifes in good condition. I want to buy first what is less)

      • Bob

        Incomprehensible lens. 50 1.8 stm is more versatile on both ff and crop. And 40 is neither a portrait nor a staff. Well, or EF24-85 3.5-4.5 for your money is the most worthwhile replacement for a whale.

        • Pokemon

          Very often I saw this pancake at novice photographers, often on 600D / 700D crops or old dimes.
          This lens comes from the fact that it is light, small and cheap. And often this is the first fix that a person at Canon gets acquainted with.

        • Andrei

          50 on FF is not very convenient - neither this nor that. It's still okay outdoors, well, either for knee-length portraits, or for full-length portraits, if the model is sitting or legs tucked in - then 50 justifies itself and gives a beautiful drawing with blur. Female photographers love to make such portraits - that's why they call him a portrait painter. 50 mm more under the crop is justified - there is an almost honest portrait lens. 40 is the standard for FF because the sensor diagonal is 43 mm. For a crop, this glass is about nothing at all. I myself am thinking about buying 40s on FF and APS-H (I would take 35 - yes it is expensive, 50 - narrowly indoors. I photograph people.) I will say this: I decided for myself 35 - ideal for photographing people indoors (60% of the environment, 40% of the people in the photo) clearly makes it clear where and what is happening, 40mm - 50/50, 50mm - 40/60. Another 50 is soapy, you need to cover up to +/- 2,5, and 40 mm from 2,8 is sharp throughout the frame like diarrhea)) well, 35 is close

          • Victor

            Yes, IMHO, on ff it is convenient to set 35 + 85, on crop - 24 + 50, respectively.

          • Karen

            I also have a 5d mark2 and this 40mm pancake makes great photos on FF, this photo was taken from hand

    • Novel

      40 wider and smaller (and perhaps a little cut (but sometimes they decide 1.8. On the other hand, since there are already 58/2, 40 will be more appropriate.

    • Roman

      And is 40 mm not only suitable for crop ?! Honestly, I don’t remember, but it seems that the vignette cuts the frame on ff.

      • Novel

        24 - EF-S lens and on FF it simply will not, the connector is different. 40 - EF lens. I have both and, in principle, each of them is good for its type of camera as a moderate width. I even like 24 more on the crop, but instead of 40 I prefer fifty rubles there. Well, the size is convenient for recording video, it will not take up much space, and in a pair with a width and a telephoto lens instead of a whale for travel, it is it. When you need something in the middle of the hole in the range from 18 to 50 (24) or from 30 to 70 (40), for example, fast and small.

  • Malina

    Hello, tell the teapot, can I put it on a Sony a6000 via an adapter and what happens if I can? Tempting sizes and price (?) - quality. Thanks in advance to those who answered.

    • Arkady Shapoval

      You will need a thick adapter, like thiswhich will kill all compactness.

  • Maria

    I really want to recommend.
    Started to shoot with him on the street. And it seemed to me freshish and uninteresting, as if you were shooting on an advanced soap box. But it all depends on the light. The scattered light will forgive. And light spots, hard light and accents help make the picture much more artistic.
    For the money for which you can buy it, this is generally a wonderful thing.

    The lens is very sharp under all conditions.

    It seems to me that a macro would work out quite well with it

  • R'RёS,R ° F "RёR№

    Is it generally considered a macro lens? In general, Nikon and Pentax have 40mm focal length macro shooters exclusively for cropping.

    • Oleg

      this is not a macro lens, it has a distance of 30cm and the magnification that it gives is small 1: 5.5. it's just a cheap full-frame headset. 40mm is the focal length that allows you to design such pancakes and not compete directly with the more expensive and light 35mm. Cropped 24mm gives macro magnification more by the way

    • B. R. P.

      Doesn't count. Quote from the review above: “The minimum focusing distance is only 30cm, while you can take macro shots with a magnification of 1: 5.5. By and large, the 'Macro 0.3m / 0.98ft' lettering on the lens simply speaks of MDF, not true macro capability. Canon Lens EF 40mm 1: 2.8 STM uses a 7-blade aperture. ” Macro from a scale of 1: 2 or more. But it's not just the scale.

      • Karen

        It's just a matter of scale, real macro lenses give a 1: 1 ratio, i.e. on the sensor, the image of the object will be the same size as the object itself

        • B. R. P.

          It's not just about scale, macro lenses are designed to work at short distances unlike other lenses.

  • uwotm8

    85 / 1.8, in order to get a lens-containing product similar to natural 135 / 2.8 (given that 85 is still soap on the open and it’s better to shoot at 2.2, we actually get an analogue of 135/4)

    From the experience of shooting portraits at 70-200 2.8 by 5d2, exactly 135 is the optimum for the street: if desired, the background is (almost) porridge, but a mouthpiece is still not needed to communicate with the model

    There is also experience in shooting portraits on a poor 50 / 1.8 on FF and crop, and this is not serious. And in the case of a specifically Kenonian nichepoltos (both ancient and STM), there is also a “cheap” flat picture with rather unpleasant bokeh in most situations (forget about blurring the “fkasha” on the crop right away if the object is larger than a flower or a cup of coffee) . You can still talk about 50 / 1.4 on FF

  • Vyacheslav

    on a full frame of it, it even covers medium format GFX)

  • Kate

    I am a beginner, I have a canon 6d carcass, I choose a portrait lens for shooting in the studio and on the street. The budget is not very big, so I choose between 40mm / 2.8 and 50mm / 1.4. Tell me, please, which one is better to choose. I plan to shoot when the skill is gained, commercial)

    • Dmitry Kostin

      Canon 85mm f / 1.8

    • B. R. P.

      Fifty dollars and so for the crop still back and forth. And for ff 85mm. really optimal.

    • Viktre

      For open spaces 85, for the studio you can see something out of 35.

      • Eugene

        And in Khrushchev - we fish portraits :)

  • Eugene

    There is not enough of this on Nikon :( For a conditionally pocket everyday use case.
    The old rare one is not autofocus, and you can’t put Zny on a DSLR.

  • Eugene

    I bought this second-hand lens yesterday, took it for a test, they really praise it! And it’s really cool, a fully working open aperture, I didn’t even expect such a picture from this kid (the carcass is the first nickel)! Just perfect! I also have a Kenon 17-40 f4 L, I want to compare them head-on, if the Elka loses a lot, I’ll sell without regret and buy, for rare cases, some kind of over-width fix ... Maybe someone has thoughts on this?

    • Viktre

      Thoughts on this.

      A modern fix, besides with 2.8 - it is not surprising that it has a fully working open, this is a common thing.

      And it’s not entirely clear how it can be compared with the Elka 17-40, it’s obvious that it is soapier, but did you really always shoot at 40 mm on it?)))

      Nevertheless, in the role of an over-width - a fix, I advise you to take a closer look at Samyang 14mm.

      • Eugene

        Hello! I bought Elka exclusively for a wide angle, plus there is a Kenon 100mm 2.0 and I realized that I lack the 35-40 range. Yes, it is available at 17-40, but somehow boring and dark plus ... So I decided to buy a cheap fix, but it turned out to be good))). Take a look at Samyang, thanks)

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