THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS | A PRO PHOTO & VIDEO BLOG

Highlight Tech: Canon EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM

Posted in Adorama Rentals by Nathan Lee Bush on December 15, 2011

Full Frame and Circular Fisheye effects are achievable from this one lens

Next time you want to go wide, and I mean really wide, check out this 8-15mm f/4 L lens from Canon. By combining two distinct fisheye lens types – “full-frame,” which, while still distorting the image, covers the entire frame 180 degress diagonally, and “circular,” which creates the classic circular vignette – Canon has accomplished a first. The lens is relatively small with that classic L build quality. With the 24-year-old workhorse 15mm fisheye designed for full-frame (i.e. film cameras) showing its age, Canon introduced this last year to accomplish a huge variety of needs for such a niche lens.

This new lens acknowledges the vibrant presence of APS-C and APS-H Canon models. As Rudy Winston explains on his blog:

  • At 8mm, this lens provides true Circular Fisheye coverage, if used with a full-frame camera (again, EOS 5D series, etc.)
  • At about 10mm, it provides a genuine full-frame, ultra-wide fisheye “look” with a cropped-sensor camera like the EOS 7D or EOS 60D
  • At about 12mm, you have the same ultra-wide, full-frame fisheye coverage with the APS-H sensor (1.3x “crop factor) on Canon’s EOS-1D models
  • And at 15mm, you’re back to true full-frame fisheye coverage with a full-frame digital SLR, or with a traditional EOS film camera.

The Digital Picture blog also has a great review of the lens, with a lot of real world examples. I encourage you to check it out.

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  1. […] PL Mount lenses, which also transfer metadata to select Digital Cinema Cameras; I share a new superwide Canon L fisheye zoom lens in our arsenal, which is the only lens allowing both full-frame and circular fisheye effects; and, […]

  2. Skip said, on December 19, 2011 at 10:14 am

    Perhaps it’s a 1st for full-frame, made by Canon. But you have been selling the Tokina (and Pentax variant) 10-17mm fisheye for APS-C sensor cameras for many years now.


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