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Canon 100mm f/2.8L: Blur example

I’ve previously documented difficulties in obtaining both Canon and Nikon lenses— right out of the box lenses showing a variety of optical problems. See Brand-new Blur.

This particular sample was shipped from B&H Photo in New York City to me in California. Could shipping damage a lens? It seems rather doubtful the way the lens is packed in its box, and if it were so easy, no lens would survive very long in real usage. So I think it’s fair to assume that Canon’s quality control is at fault, which is consistent with past experience.

What can be learned from a bad sample?

I made several comparisons with the 100/2.8L in Yosemite (to cross-check as I always do), enough to show a problem, documented here on this page. The problem can vary in degree, depending on where the lens is focused. Even when a lens is “off” some conclusions can be drawn. For example, central sharpness is top-notch with the 100/2.8L, even wide open.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

DAP includes thousands of pages of exclusive coverage and high resolution Retina-grade examples detailing Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies and their lenses, with in-depth analysis of sharpness and contrast, color, bokeh, vignetting, distortion, MTF, and flare, behavioral and practical usage.

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Entire frame as-shot at f/2.8 on the Canon 5D Mark II
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