Photography Gear Reviews

Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM Review

In this video review we take a look at the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM

Macro. This fascinating field of photography grips most photographers at some point in their careers and often never lets go. Magnifying the miniature and blowing it up into a super large print is an addictive pursuit and often wows people with the rarely seen results. However, there is more to owning a macro lens than just running around the house and shooting everything small you can find. This Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM is a pro piece of glass and can be used for much much more.

Getting your hands on the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM, the first thing you notice (after that red ring of course) is the lens is relatively light. Although constructed from a plastic housing the lens still maintains a quality feel and the metal mount and water resistant rubber seal ensures the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM is safe and secure on your camera. This lens has all the usual Canon L quality and at 100mm distortion and vignetting is minimal even when shot wide open. Chromatic aberration is virtually non-existent thanks to the UD glass element.

The Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM compares directly with the cheaper 100mm Canon Macro non L lens and you may be wondering why it is worth paying the extra for this, especially when the non L version is such a good lens anyway. The answer, apart from the slightly better build quality, is the Hybrid IS system. This system compensates for the usual angular movement but also for shift movement too. This is important for macro shots when you are getting in close and even the smallest movement will ruin your shot. It means shooting macro shots handheld becomes easier and your number of useable shots will increase. The stabilisation provides 2 stops at 1.0x magnification, 3 stops at 0.5x and 4 stops in normal shooting conditions.

graham slee solo and sennheiser hd650 headphones
graham slee solo and sennheiser hd650 headphones

The Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM can be used for a lot more than close ups of flowers and bugs. The lens is such high quality that it is perfectly suited to studio work when shooting still life or product photography. I use the lens regularly for my water drop photographs and it is the perfect in this role.

Drop Collisions 2-6
Drop Collisions 2-6

If you want to shoot these water drop images for yourself check out this video tutorial -

The lens also doubles as a good portrait lens. The 100mm is an excellent portrait range on a full frame. At 160mm equivalent on a cropped sensor camera it is a bit longer but is still a useful portrait range. The IS works well for portraits and provides an added bonus in low light situations.

Overall the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM offers excellent value, especially given the cost, due to the versatility that it provides. If you are looking at the non L version my advice would be to save up the extra pennies and buy this lens. With a 5 out of 5 joy factor, you will not be sorry.

Purchase in the US - Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro Lens

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