Canon says its new EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L II USM lens features “significant” advancements in optical quality, image stabilization performance, and rotating-zoom-ring design. The L-series lens features weather resistance and a rugged magnesium housing.
The lens features a completely redesigned optical formula containing one fluorite and one Super UD lens element, “a combination unique to lenses in this focal range,” says the company, to help deliver sharp images with high resolution and contrast. This combination of elements helps thoroughly suppress chromatic aberration throughout the entire zoom range, Canon advises.
The minimum focusing distance of the lens has been reduced to 3.2 ft. (0.98 m), resulting in maximum magnification of 0.31x.
While the original EF 100-400 mm was known for its push-pull zoom adjustment, the new lens uses a rotation-type zoom ring similar to the one found on the EF 70-300 mm f/4-5.6L IS USM lens, allowing for more precise adjustments, easier handling, and consistently excellent weight balance during handheld photography, says Canon.
In addition, the lens features an improved zoom torque adjustment ring that allows for the easy setting of zoom tension based on personal shooting preferences.
The EF 100-400 mm also features an inner focusing system, a powerful yet quiet Ring USM, a high-speed CPU and optimized auto focus (AF) algorithms for fast and accurate autofocusing in various shooting situations.
The lens features three Image Stabilization (IS) modes – standard, panning, and during exposure only. The optical IS provides up to four shutter speed steps of correction, increased from 1.5 steps in the previous model. In addition, the lens features Canon’s newly developed Air Sphere Coating (ASC) which helps to reduce backlit flaring and ghosting significantly, as well as a 9-bladed circular aperture Electro-Magnetic Diaphragm.
As with all L-series lenses, the new EF 100-400 mm is highly resistant to dust and water, with excellent durability in even harsh conditions. Fluorine coating on the front and rear surfaces of the lens can repel dust particles and water droplets. It also makes smears and fingerprints easy to remove without the use of lens cleaning fluid.
Included with the lens is a new lens hood with a “cleverly placed and convenient” side window allowing the user to easily adjust specialty filters while the lens hood remains in place.
In addition, the lens is equipped with a newly designed detachable tripod mount which can be removed to reduce weight during handheld operation.
The Canon EF 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6L II USM is scheduled to be available in December for an estimated retail price of $2,599.99.