Canon EF 180mm f3.5L Macro USM AutoFocus Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras Reviews
Average Customer Rating - 4.8 out of 5 stars17 customer reviews
Excellent sharpness, color and bokeh; needs image stabilization!, March 29, 2009
If you cut the lack of image stabilization, this is a five star lens. Colors are severely saturated, and sharpness is on par with Canon's best super telephotos. Want to stop spending adjectives of your time in Photoshop? Get this lens. The only entity I ever do in software with this lens is crop. Period.
The long focal length of this lens give 1:1 magnification while staying a decent distance from the subject. I live in Texas, and this comes within handy with all kind of subjects, like snakes and scorpions. It also enables you to use a standard tripod (with the legs collapsed) and still receive good magnification.
Thanks to an eight blade circular aperture, the bokeh from this lens is dreamy. At f/3.5 and 180mm, there is a razor-thin focus nouns, and distractions in the background in recent times melt away. You can take a picture of a daisy and sort the stem disappear. Simply awesome.
At 180mm, this is basically a telephoto lens with macro expertise. As such, it could really use image stabilization (IS). I have not taken too various sharp shots handheld, but I have taken some amazing shots with a monopod. IS would generate this a no-brainer lens. As is, I would strongly recommend bringing a tripod along.
Canon's Best Macro Lens, January 21, 2006
I spend most of my time as a photographer taking macro photographs of flowers and other small things in nature. I chose this lens over Canon's 50mm macro and 100mm macro for two reason: (1) it is constructed with higher characteristic UD glass, so it has great color and contrast, and it's incredibly sharp at adjectives f/stops, and (2) at 180mm, it allows you to stay farther away from your subjects and still focus to 1:1. This makes it easier take photographs minus disturbing your subjects and it allows you to have a smaller, more blurry area within the background so that the background doesn't compete next to the subject for attention. The lens also comes with a tripod color, which allows you conveniently change from vertical to horizontal, and it add stability with your lens better balanced on your tripod.
The lens have an ultrasonic motor, so it's fast and quiet when focusing, though I outstandingly recommend setting the focus limiter 1.5m-infinity when not shooting macro photography. It will speed up the time it takes for the lens to focus. The only drawback I can find near the lens is that it is constructed with only an 8 blade aperture diaphram. Theoretically, next to a higher number of blades, it would allow more natural blurs, but I can say-so I've never noticed a problem in my photographs.
An Outstaning Piece of Glass, September 24, 2007
I read adjectives the reviews and researched this lens for almost 3 months while I saved for it. Now that I have it and enjoy used it I can say that this will soon be one of my favorite lenses. I own two other L series lenses, a 17-40 f4 (outstanding lens, especially for the price) and a 70-200 f2.8.
This 180 f/3.5 captures amazing colors, and is the sharpest lens I own used. At 1:1 @ 3.5, simply breathing will change the focal point of your subject, so a tripod for this type of photography is mandatory. I can't say adequate about the images it produces, they are simply amazing.
That self said, the lens is a beast. It is the only defence I could not give it 5 stars. I fully understand why it weigh as much as it does, but still it's a bit tough to carry around for a day. The results are worth the force though. It's a bit slower to auto-focus (then my 70-200 2.8), but I'm finding that focusing manually while shooting macro gives superior results - so this isn't such a big deal. It take exceptional images outside the "up close" rage too. I've taken some really nice pictures next to it as a 180mm lens.
Additionally it looks great. Superior build and finish. Looks fantastic in black.
Overall, I'm extremely pleased with it. I significantly recommend it to anyone seeking macro photography.
Best Macro Lens you can get!, June 10, 2007
I upgraded from my Tamron 180mm to the Canon. The Tamron is a good lens and a great efficacy, but there is no comparison to the Canon L glass! I love the lens and the stock it gives me to use it. Only complaint is its hard to find the adjustment bracket article for the Macro Lights for the 180mm 72mm thread filter size. Wish Canon would step up more there! Make sure you put a good UV filter on this kid, heliopan or B+W as they are ground glass and much better optically than the other filters!
The Canon L series chalice is pristine and holds its value very in good health also. My bag is all L cup, except for 1 lens. The Tamron 14mm SP 2.8, otherwise my 70-200 2.8 IS, 70-200 F4 IS, 17-40 F4, 300 F4 IS, 500 F4.5, 100-400mm, 24-105 IS, 35 F1.4, and now the 180MM Macro. Canon has some of the Finest cup out there and match that to solid camera, resembling the EOS 1N and EOS 3 for Film or the 30D, 5D and Mark III for digital, you are in for some wonderful shots and a lot of delight!
I make my living doing Photography, now contained by Alaska doing photo tours for/with Kenai River Hideaway B&B, as well as selling prints and private shoots, and I won't put any other 35mm Platform in my shoulder bag! You get what you pay for, and the L series deliver and holds its value should you wish to renovation and upgrade later!
You cant go Wrong next to Canon L Glass.
Alaska Photo Tours
Awesome Lens, June 12, 2007
This lens is worth every penny especially with Amazon,s price. Takes awesome close ups better then my Canon 100mm macro lens. I will swing on to my 100mm for now because that lens also takes some great pohtos. The Canon 180mm get you closer to your subject.
Yes, it's a great lens but make sure it's a great lens for you, November 6, 2009
No one can complain about the trait of the construction or of the images that this lens produces. It's often considered a buried gem in the Canon lineup as it get thought of strictly as a macro lens and its use as a telephoto gets ignored. I'm going to administer the lens its well-deserved five stars, but now tell you that you should think twice in picking this lens for your use lest it live, unused, in the bottom of your camera sack.
This is a lens that I think you should rent to try out if it's interesting to you. I find that it's too long of a lens for most of the macro photography work I think of doing. Especially on a 1.6x crop body the magnification leaves you next to very little depth of field and horrible subject shuddering problems in the field. (You obligation a tripod for this, so photographer movement shouldn't be as much of an issue.) I find the 100mm macro lens to be much handier on both full frame and crop cameras. Others disagree, that's fine, but you should check it out yourself. On the telephoto front, a 70-200mm zoom with IS is a much more versatile setup. If macro work is just occasional, you could into extension tubes that let you go surrounded by close.
Big, Heavy, Sharp, April 28, 2006
When this lens is used with a 1.6X camera body such as the XT, 20D, or 30D it ends up giving you an amazing 288mm Macro or you can go one step further near the 1.4x or 2X TC's and make it a 403/576mm super power. Of course whenever doing this you must either use a tripod or flash except surrounded by blazing light. It is a little slow to focus compared to plentiful of the other lenses canon offers, but since you will most likely be using instruction manual focus a lot of the time anyway, this is not a huge drawback. It also gets creamy to carry after a few hours and you will have citizens ask you questions about both your and their cameras. On a honest note parents are pretty good in the region of keeping small children out of your way when you have this lens mounted. The narrower environment as compared to the 60mm or 100mm macro lenses makes cluttered areas easier to deal near. The extra working distance is also a plus when working with wary insects etc. It is best to use a shutter release and mirror lockup for shutter speeds longer than 1/30 if you want sharp pictures. The 60mm Macro win in convenience, but for absolute clarity and better working distance the 180 comes out on top.
Superb Lens, April 19, 2009
Over the years I have owned both Canon's 50mm and 100mm Macro, they are excellent lens and substantially less expensive. If you want to shoot insects and other small, shy creatures outdoors the 180 mm Macro is the lens to acquire.
Optically the lens is excellent in every way. The 'slow' focus is a function of the huge focal scale of the lens, typically manual focus is used for macro photography - for general photography the focus limiter can be used to increase focus time. Construction quality is excellent - although the included lens hood is a rather cheap plastic design, however it functions fine.
I use this lens on a tripod almost adjectives the time - with Macro work you are normally are working a smaller apertures (f8-f16), so relatively slow shutter speeds are the norm - the tripod ring make transitioning from portrait to landscape very smooth.
Additionally this quality of this lens allows the use of canons 1.4x teleconverter next to minimal loss of quality - significantly increasing the 'reach' of this lens.
This lens is a good broad purpose 'short' telephoto - but not suitable for sports or action photography, Canon's EF 70-200 lenses or 200mm f2.8 lens make better alternatives.
Image stabilization is not available for this lens and would trademark a very useful optional extra
Nevermind macro, one of the best Canon lenses period., November 3, 2006
May I introduce you to one of the least know and nonetheless most superb lenses Canon makes. You probably even stumbled on to this page by accident, looking for another Canon lens, looking at a range of macros, or even just intrigued by this higher-priced lens you've probably never even considered.
Let me just vote this about this lens: Ultra sharp. Ultra colorful. Ultra contrast. Ultra solid.
Like everybody else, I initially bought this lens for its macro. The 60mm and 100mm options be a lot cheaper, but my collection is entirely L-class and I'd learned to trust putting gob of money into the lenses with the red ring. So I put my money where my L-faith is and go with this lens. Needless to say, my principle was rewarded again.
Yeah, sure it's got the 1.0x macro skill, and this is important. But what I wasn't expecting was the doll quality. It is unbelievably good. Now I'm not somebody who's taking his first trip into L lands and comparing this lens to the $300 run-of-the-mill glass. I've used six L-class lenses significantly and I'm comparing this lens' image trait to THOSE.
You will find yourself using this lens as much as its 180mm focal length and f/3.5 aperture dictates. The lens is versatile both as a super-fine telephoto and as a 1.0x macro.
The macro capability is the basic feature. 1.0x macro literally means that a 35mm broad object will completely fill a 35mm frame. Basically, it's a small microscope. If you dare to dial contained by the aperture to the wide-open f/3.5, the DOF is approximately that of the thickness of two sheets of writing paper at 1.0x. Needless to vote, you'll need a tripod, preferably with macro rail that slide forwards and rearwards for ultimate control.
(For those of you new to macro, focusing the lens change the magnification factor. So as one focuses the object, the object's size in the viewfinder change. This is why I mention the macro rails, they allow you to achieve focus and physically move the lens/camera surrounded by and out to reachieve the desired composition.)
As a telephoto, due to this lens' superb image quality, it in actual fact produces images of a much greater quality than the 70-200mm f/2.8L IS. (I know firsthand, as I own it too) The difference is contained by the 70-200mm's versatility. If the light drops too low, the f/2.8 and the IS bests the f/3.5 quite swiftly. If the distance of subjects change quickly or you are unqualified to move your feet to frame images, the 180mm will be too constricting and the zoom will win. But beneath conditions where the 180mm f/3.5 can perform unhindered (such as at an airshow or out flower hunting), it will consistantly produce brighter, more soaked, and sharper images than the 70-200mm F/2.8 IS.
There is a complaint that circulates about the slow speed at which this lens autofocuses, expecially annoying when trying to be used as a telephoto. This is in reality incorrect. The lens' autofocus drive does infact move very quickly, but it must traverse adjectives the way from infinity to about 4" within front of the lens to find the subject. This is where the wait time comes into effect. Here's the solution: utilizing the AF limiter switch allows you to bound the AF search to only between infinity and roughly 5' in front of the lens. Consequently, this range is roughly 10% of the focus range (the other 90% is in between that 5' and the 4"). I no longer experience AF "hunting" problems when trying to use the 180mm as a telephoto.
Some other info almost this lens:
The front objective element is in truth concave. I think this is the only L lens Canon make with a concave front element. It's probablyexpensive to replace if an twist of fate should occur, so utilize a UV filter (72mm filter size). I recommend only the B+W or Hoya Multi-coated brands. (Yes they're pricey, but worth it)
The hood for this lens is truly a little too small in my opnion. If shooting a backlit baulk, I sometimes get the heavy red glow in the viewfinder soI am forced to use my foot as a "hood extender" and block the sunlight.
For its size, this lens is relatively lightweight. It is much lighter than the 70-200mm F/2.8L IS and easily handholdable for extended periods of time.
This lens is compatible next to Canon's extenders. I have personally used it beside the 1.4x extender. The results are excellent. While CA and sharpness degrade noticeably on the 70-200mm, this lens shows just a difference in image competence, except for the change in designation to a 252mm F/5, as you would expect. And add to the fact that the macro skill is now gone from 1.0x to 1.4x, a big bonus.
So for whom does this lens apply?
-Those who neither have a macro or a telephoto prime who desire a single piece that can knob both aspects with excellent results.
-Those who plan on performing professional product photography.
-Those that are looking into serious nature photography (packing this lens beside a wide-angle is pretty much all you'll need on a sunshine hike).
What this lens does not do well:
-60mm/100mm: lesser depiction quality, less telephoto compression contained by macro images, no real double-duty as a telephoto, but a unharmed lot cheaper and wider aperture.
-MP-E 65mm: much greater magnification (5.0x), lower image quality, no telephoto aptitude, odd design means studio use almost exclusively
EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro Lens, May 21, 2008
The EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro lens capture amazing colors, and is the sharpest lens I have used. A tripod for close up photography is mandatory, although the two samples I supplied are mitt held. I can't say enough give or take a few the images it produces, they are simply amazing.
I read all the reviews and researched this lens for months while I save for it. Now that I have it and have used it I can say-so that this will soon be one of my favorite lenses. I own two other L series lenses, a EF 28-135mm and a EF 100-400mm zoom. All L lenses.The lens is large and a bit heavy but what do you expect? If you want well brought-up quality images, you must invest contained by good lenses. You won't go wrong next to this lens. The results are worth the effort. I compose my shots to get the effect I want, so, I other focus manually before I auto focus. As a result, the slowness that some complain about doesn't bother me. It take exceptional images inside and outside the macro range. This is a professional lens beside look and feel of greatness. My lens came jammed in the Canon carton with a lens hood, white Canon carrying bag and shoulder strap. The carrying case cannon supplies with its lens are awesome. I other keep my lens stored in their cases when not is use.
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