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Canon Claims “Firsts” with EF 100mm Macro IS Lens
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posted on Sep 2, 2009 at 4:32PM

Canon Claims “Firsts” with EF 100mm Macro IS Lens

By Jared Newman
  • Fixed 100mm focal length
  • Hybrid Image Stabilizer
  • Macro lens
  • f/2.8 max aperture
  • $1,049

Canon EF 100mm Macro IS USM
(Credit: Canon)

After flaunting its world's-first Hybrid Image Stabilizer in July, Canon has finally stuck the technology inside a camera lens.


The EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM is the first interchangeable lens to compensate for two kinds of camera shake, Canon claims. While traditional angular stabilization corrects for the photographer's wrist movements, a new shift-based stabilization uses accelerometers to correct the camera's back-and-forth movement parallel to the imaging scene.


Shift-based stabilization comes in handy for macro and close-range photography, making for more stable images. Angular stabilization is used for more traditional shots. An algorithm takes into account the amount of shake from both sources. It then calculates the amount of blur on the image plane and adjusts lens elements to compensate, correcting for up to four stops of camera shake.


Accordingly, the EF 100mm is a multipurpose lens that's good for close-ups and portrait-length telephoto shots, best used for wedding, nature and portrait photography. Because the lens allows for macro shooting, Canon says it's also the first macro lens to offer any image stabilization. That makes it useful for close-ups when a tripod isn't practical or available.


As with other lenses in Canon's L series, this one features dust and weather seals, ultra low-dispersion lens elements for fixing chromatic aberrations, Super Spectra coating for improved contrast and reduced glare and lens flare, a high-speed auto focus motor and a three-position focus limiter switch. The lens is constructed of 15 elements in 12 groups.


Canon's EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM will be available at the end of September for $1,049. In July, Canon said the Hybrid Image Stabilizer would eventually appear in a wider range of products, but the latest announcement doesn't have any more news on those developments. 


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