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Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM
EF-s
Pancake (2014-today)

© 2015 KenRockwell.com. All rights reserved.

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

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Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM (52mm filter thread, 0.5'/0.16m close-focus, 4.2 oz./119g, about $150.) I got mine at Adorama, you also can get them at Amazon and at B&H

This ad-free website's biggest source of support is when you use those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live. Canon does not seal its boxes, so never buy at retail or any other source not on my personally approved list since you'll have no way of knowing if you're missing accessories, getting a defective, store demo, damaged, returned or used lens. Buy only from the approved sources I use myself for the best prices, service, return policies and selection. Thanks for helping me help you! Ken.

 

April 2015    Canon Reviews    Canon Lenses    All Reviews

Why Fixed Lenses Take Better Pictures

 

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Canon 24 2.8 STM.

 

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Can you see it on this 7D Mark II? It's this small!

 

Sample Image Files

Colors and shadows at the new park

Colors and shadows at the new park, 28 January 2015. (Canon 7D Mk II at Auto ISO 5,000, Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM, f/2.8 at 1/40 hand-held, no lens profile, Perfectly Clear V2.) full-resolution file.

 

La Especial Norte

La Especial Norte, 28 January 2015. (Canon 7D Mk II at ISO 640, Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM, f/2.8 at 1/40 hand-held, no lens profile, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger.

 

Introduction       top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

Adorama pays top dollar for your used gear.

B&H Photo - Video - Pro Audio

The Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM is a tiny and super-sharp normal to wide lens for Canon's APS-C cameras. It makes an excellent replacement for any 18-55mm zoom, saving size and weight and adding a fast f/2.8 speed for use in dim light and making your viewfinder brighter. It's tiny, and has fantastic performance.

This 24mm lens sees the same angle of view on an APS-C camera as a 35mm lens sees on full-frame.

It is smaller than many lens caps. Put its caps on, and it's twice the size!

The 24/2.8 STM uses a new kind of autofocus motor, called STM (stepper motor) for quieter AF, and is especially intended for use while shooting video with a DSLR. This motor makes only the lightest humming sound as it focuses.

There is immediate manual-focus override simply by turning the front ring. It's done electronically, and unlike almost all other electronically-focussed lenses, this Canon manual-focus system works great. It's the smoothest, lightest manual focus system ever — even better than any lens from LEICA, hah!

The optics of this lens are superb, and its size make it a complete winner. For $150, you can't go wrong.

 

Compatibility and Formats

This new-technology STM lens is completely compatible with all Canon APS-C EOS cameras, except Canon's most ancient D30 of 2000, the D60 of 2002 and the 10D of 2003.

Of course it works on the newer 20D and 30D, all the Digital Rebels, as well as on the newest state-of-the-art 7D Mk II on which I use it.

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Canon 7D Mark II with 24mm "lens cap." bigger.

 

Specifications         top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

 

Name

Canon calls this the CANON LENS EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM.

EF means "electronic focus," meaning that there is an autofocus motor in the lens itself. All Canon lenses since 1987 have been EF.

-s means "small format," meaning that this lens only works or mounts on Canon's APS-C DSLRs.

STM means that the AF motor is a stepper motor.

∅52: 52mm filter thread.

 

Optics       top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM diagram

6 elements in 5 groups.

One aspherical element, shown in green.

Muliticoated mostly in magenta and green.

 

Focal Length

24mm.

Used on a 1.6x camera, it will see about the same field of view as a 35mm lens sees on full-frame.

 

Angles of View

59.2º diagonal.

35º vertical.

50.5º  horizontal.

 

Close Focus       top

0.52 feet (6" or 0.16 m) from the image plane, specified.

 

Maximum Reproduction Ratio       top

1:3.7 (0.27x).

With EF12 II tube: 1:1.3 (0.77x).

With EF25 II tube: 1:0.72 (1.38x, bigger than life size).

 

Diaphragm       top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Front, Canon 24/2.8 STM at f/2.8 (EF diaphragm not visible).

7 rounded blades.

Stops down to f/22.

Reasonably round to f/8, heptagonal from f/11 to f/22.

 

Focus Scale       top

No.

The ring turns without stops; it's just an electronic encoder.

 

Depth-of-Field Scale       top

No.

 

Infra-Red Focus Indices       top

No.

 

Filters        top

52mm thread, plastic.

Does not rotate, but moves in and out with focusing.

 

Size       top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

About the size of a body cap on this 7D Mark II. bigger.

Canon specifies 2.7" (68.2 mm) diameter by 0.9" (22.8 mm) extension from flange.

Canon says to add 23.9mm if you want the overall length with caps.

 

Weight       top

4.190 oz. (118.8 g), measured.

Canon specifies 4.4 oz. (125 g).

 

Hood       top

Plastic screw-in ES-52, optional.

I wouldn't bother with it.

 

Case       top

LP811 sack, $24.

I'd use a tube sock instead.

 

Caps       top

Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM Box

Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM with included caps.

Standard 52mm E-52 II front cap.

Standard EOS cap rear.

 

Quality       top

Made in Malaysia.

 

Introduced       top

Photokina, September 2014.

 

Canon Model Number       top

EF-S2428STM.

 

Canon Product Code       top

9522B002. (9522B001 in Japan).

 

JAN Code       top

4549292-010220.

 

Price, USA        top

2015 April: $149.

2015 January: $150.

Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM Box

Box, Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM.

 

Performance       top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

Overall    Autofocus    Breathing   Bokeh   Color   Distortion   Ergonomics

Falloff    Filters     Flare     Lateral Color Fringes

Macro   Mechanics   Sharpness   Sunstars

 

Overall     performance      top

The Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM is as tiny as the tiniest lens ever made by Canon, the 40mm STM, and is even lighter. This is Canon's lightest lens of all time; lighter even than the 50/1.8 II.

This tiny 24mm lens is optically wonderful as well.

 

Autofocus     performance      top

AF Speed

Autofocus speed is moderate.

It's not quite as fast as other Canon lenses, but it's quieter so you won't hear it as much while shooting movies.

Like all wide lenses, its AF speed is more than fast enough to catch fast action:

Katie on the spinny thing

Katie on the spinny thing, 28 January 2015. (Canon 7D Mk II at Auto ISO 400, Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM, f/3.2 at 1/125, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger.

 

Auto/Manual Switching

Just grab the focus ring for instant manual-focus override in ONE SHOT mode. In AI SERVO, the camera will keep trying to focus for you.

You never need to touch the AF-MF switch unless you want to lock-out autofocus.

 

AF Noise

AF is quieter than most Canon EF lenses.

It makes a quiet, precise hum as it moves, then no sound when it's in focus.

When the lens is constantly moving in and out in AI SERVO mode for video, it is quieter than other USM lenses since it doesn't make mild banging noises as it reverses direction.

 

AF Accuracy and Consistency

AF accuracy is dead-on on my Canon 7D Mark II.

At f/2.8, this isn't very difficult.

 

Manual Focus

Manual focus works great; the electronic system works better than any other similar system.

There's no hesitation when turning the ring, and it works very quietly as well.

 

Focus Breathing     performance      top

Focus breathing is of interest to cinematographers who don't want the image changing size ("breathing") as the lens is focused among different subjects.

The image of the Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM gets larger as focused more closely.

 

Bokeh     performance      top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM Bokeh

Shot with Canon 24mm f/2.8 at f/2.8. Camera-original © file.

Bokeh is smooth, but nothing ever gets much out focus with a 24mm f/2.8 lens.

If you want to lose a background, use a longer lens like the 40mm STM or any tele.

 

Color Rendition     performance      top

The color balance of this 24mm f/2.8 matches my other Canon EF lenses.

 

Distortion     performance      top

This Canon 24/2.8 STM has mild barrel distortion that gets slightly stronger at very close distances.

It will go away when used on a camera like the 7D Mk II is used with a lens profile, and is easy to correct in Photoshop's Lens Correction Filter with these values. This isn't data; these are the results of much field research and calculation on my part:

Correction Factor
30' (10m)
+2.7
10' (3m)
+2.6
3' (1m)
+2.5
1' (0.3m)
+3.0

© 2015 KenRockwell.com. All rights reserved.

 

Ergonomics     performance      top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Canon 24/2.8 STM.

Ergonomics are perfect; just grab and go.

 

Falloff (darkened corners)     performance      top

Shot without a lens profile, there is mild to moderate falloff at f/2.8, which goes away by f/4.

I've greatly exaggerated this below by shooting a flat gray target and presenting these images against a flat gray background:

 

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM falloff

No peripheral illumination correction

f/2.8
f/4
Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM Falloff Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM Falloff
Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM Falloff Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM Falloff
f/5.6
f/8

© 2012 KenRockwell.com. All rights reserved.

 

Use a lens profile in your camera and of course this goes away.

 

Filters, Use with     performance      top

52mm is a huge filter size for the tiny optics of this lens.

It works without vignetting with many stacked filters, but watch it: Canon cautions to use just one so you don't damage the wimpy internal mechanics of the focus mechanism.

 

Flare and Ghosts     performance      top

The 24 STM has no visible ghosts, and I shoot it with a multicoated UV filter.

This is as bad as I could make it look, and this is with a multi-coated Nikon L37c (370 nm UV) filter over the lens:

Streetlamp with moon

Streetlamp with moon, 28 January 2015. (Canon 7D Mk II at Auto ISO 400, Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM with Nikon L37c filter, f/2.8 at 1/30 hand-held, no lens profile, Perfectly Clear V2.) full-resolution file.

The little white dot in the tree below the street light is the moon, not a ghost.

I am able to get one slight dot opposite a bright source of light if the source is closer to the center:

Ghost at the Growers, 28 January 2015

Ghost at the Growers, 28 January 2015. (Canon 7D Mk II at Auto ISO 3200, Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM with Nikon L37c filter, f/2.8 at 1/30 hand-held, no lens profile, Perfectly Clear V2.) bigger.

 

Lateral Color Fringes     performance      top

There are some very slight red-blue color fringes when shot without a lens profile.

These won't be visible in actual pictures, and go away with a lens profile.

 

Macro    performance      top

This lens gets to within just a few inches of the subject:

Canon 40mm macro 09 July 2012

Longines 23ZS at close-focus distance. f/4 at 1/320 at ISO 100, 20 MP Canon 7D Mark II, no lens profile.

 

Canon 40mm macro

Crop from above image at 100%, 20 MP Canon 7D Mark II. If this is about 6" (15cm) on your screen, printing the complete image at this same high magnification would result in a 40 x 60" (100 x 150 cm) print!

This is a 60-year-old watch, and you can see all the crud in explicit detail.

I doubt you'd need them, but you can use an EF12 II tube for 1:1.3 (0.77x) magnification and the EF25 II tube for 1:0.72 (1.38x, bigger than life size) magnification.

It will not work with tele-extenders.

Canon also cautions not to use close-up lenses, since they weigh enough to mess up the focus system.

It's super sharp at all apertures. Only at macro distances there is a bit of spherical aberration wide-open at f/2.8 which leads to slightly lower contrast, with a sharp core under the slight veiling haze. At f/4, it's perfect as you can see above.

 

Mechanics     performance      top

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM

Rear, Canon 24 f/2.8 STM.

The Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM is a decent lens, made entirely of plastic, with a metal mount. Since the mount is half the lens, it feels pretty tough, even if the internal mechanism may not be.

 

Filter Threads

Plastic.

 

Hood Mount

None, you use the filter threads.

 

Fore Barrel

Plastic.

 

Focus Ring

Rubbery plastic.

 

Main Barrel

Plastic.

 

Internals

Seem like all plastic.

 

Moisture seal at mount

No.

 

Mount

Chromed metal.

 

Rear Bumper

Rubber ring.

 

Markings

Paint.

 

Mounting Index

White plastic bump.

 

Serial Number

Canon EF 24mm f/2.8 STM

Bottom, Canon EF-s 24mm f/2.8 STM.

Laser-engraved into bottom of lens barrel.

 

Date Code

None found.

 

Noises When Shaken

Mild clicking.

 

Made in

Malaysia.

 

Sharpness     performance      top

Lens sharpness doesn't matter much, but it sure distracts amateurs who confuse lens sharpness with picture sharpness.

This Canon 24 is so sharp that if you can't make a sharp picture with it, you're doing something wrong. Most of the newest lenses from Canon and Nikon are this good; it's not like the old days of the 1990s and before when there could be sharpness differences between lenses.

Filthy old mat, 28 January 2015

Filthy old mat, 28 January 2015. 7D Mark II, 24 STM at f/4 at 1/400 hand-held, +4 Saturation, 7 sharpening, Auto White Balance, no lens profile.) Camera-Original © 11MB LARGE JPG File.

This is with no lens profile: no correction for fall-off or lateral color fringes, and this lens is still super-sharp out to the edges.

It's diffraction-limited by f/5.6, meaning this lens is just about perfect. f/5.6 is its sharpest aperture, and diffraction starts dulling the image by f/8.

Here is Canon's rated MTF curve, which agrees that it's sharper at f/2.8 than at f/8:

 

Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM MTF

Canon USA 24mm f/2.8 STM MTF: 10 and 30 cycles., f/2.8 and f/8.

 

Sunstars     performance      top

With a rounded 7-bladed diaphragm, sunstars have diffuse, not sharp, points.

For the best sunstars, shoot at f/11 or smaller.

 

Compared       top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

There isn't much to compare.

Every other lens is much, much bigger and more expensive, and not any sharper.

There is no sharper 24mm lens for Canon APS-C cameras. For ten times the price, the Canon 24mm f/1.4 II is faster, tougher and covers full-frame, but isn't quite as sharp as this new STM lens on APS-C.

The Canon 24-70/2.8 II is also excellent, but sells for 15 times as much and weighs seven times as much.

There isn't really any comparison. While this lens is simple and inexpensive, it's also optically excellent.

 

Usage         top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

 

Manual focus

Manual focus is electronic, so there is no manual focus when the camera is off or asleep.

On most cameras, manual focus override only works while the shutter button is held halfway.

It will focus manually when in the MF position whenever the meter is on.

For immediate manual-focus override, you have to be in ONE SHOT AF mode. In AI SERVO mode, most cameras keep trying to change the focus on you, while other cameras simply ignore manual focus in AI SERVO.

In AI FOCUS, the camera selects ONE SHOT or AI SERVO for you depending on if the subject is moving, and if it is and the camera is tracking the subject, it will probably ignore the manual focus ring.

 

Hood       top

I'd forget the little ES-52 hood. It's an idiotic thing that won't actually shield any light.

Be careful with hoods; if you use a metal screw-in hood you'll rip this plastic lens' guts out if you snag or bang the hood on something.

I had no problems with flare without a hood, so I'd forget it entirely. A hood would triple the size of this thing!

 

Recommendations       top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

This Canon 24mm f/2.8 STM is an excellent lens for just about anything. You could travel the world for a year and bring back extraordinary images you could publish anywhere, and pull loads of gallery-sized prints for your show.

Ultimately, every shot I make with this little jewel is sharp and clear; it gets focus and makes my shot.

When assembling a system, use this lens to replace an 18-55mm zoom. It's OK to own them both, but never carry them both at the same time.

If you like to take everything but still travel light, add the 10-18mm STM and the 55-250mm STM and you're good to go for anything, anywhere.

I use my 24 STM on my 7D Mk II which is a big camera. Having a tiny lens feels great on a big camera, and with a tiny camera like the SL1 will really free you. The less you carry, the more great pictures you'll carry back.

I got mine at Adorama, you also can get them at Amazon and at B&H. If you've found all the time, effort and expense I incur sharing all this information on an ad-free website, my biggest source of support is when you use those or any of these links to approved sources when you get anything, regardless of the country in which you live.

Canon does not seal its boxes, so never buy at retail or any other source not on my personally approved list since you'll have no way of knowing if you're missing accessories, getting a defective, store demo, damaged, returned or used lens. Buy only from the approved sources I use myself for the best prices, service, return policies and selection.

Thanks for helping me help you!

Ken.

 

More Information       top

Intro   Specs   Performance   Compared   Usage   Recommendations   More

Canon USA's 24mm STM product page.

Canon USA's 24mm STM instruction manual.

Canon Japan's 24mm f/2.8 STM Page (in Japanese; English Translation).

 

Help me help you         top

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Thanks for reading!

 

 

Mr. & Mrs. Ken Rockwell, Ryan and Katie.

 

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28-29 Jan 2015