Canon has announced the world’s widest-angle autofocus zoom lens for full-frame cameras, the Canon RF 10-20mm F4 L IS STM. Offering a massive 130° diagonal angle of view, it’s designed for subjects such as landscapes, architecture, or interiors. It’s a rectilinear lens, not fisheye, meaning that straight lines in the scene are reproduced as such in the final image.
In effect, this new optic is the successor to the existing Canon EF 11-24mm f/4L IS USM for EOS DSLRs. But thanks to the shorter back-focus distance of the mirrorless RF mount, it offers both a wider angle of view and optical stabilisation, while also being much very smaller. At 83.7mm in diameter and 112mm in length, it measures 2cm less in each dimension than its predecessor, while being less than half the weight at 570g.
Optically, the lens uses 16 elements in 12 groups. This includes 3 glass moulded aspherical elements, one of which is made from ultra-low dispersion (UD) glass, with the aim of delivering high levels of sharpness all across the frame. In addition, 3 UD and 1 super UD glass elements are on hand to minimise chromatic aberration.
On a lens this wide, flare suppression is key, and here Canon has deployed all the exotic coatings at its disposal, including Subwavelength Structure Coating, Air Sphere coating, and Super Spectra coating. There’s also a shallow, permanently fitted hood.
Small, but fully featured
Despite the compact size, Canon has added an array of additional features. Built-in optical stabilisation promises 5 stops of shake reduction, increasing to 6 stops when used on a camera with in-body stabilisation, such as the EOS R3, R5, R6, or R6 Mark II. The lens also debuts a new “Peripheral Control IS” system that’s said to give better stabilisation in the corners of the frame.
This is the firm’s first L-series lens with an STM motor for autofocus, which is enabled by the use of a small, lightweight focus group. The system gains a position sensor, which means that unlike Canon’s other STM designs, it doesn’t need to reset itself on startup, which should equate to faster reactions. Full-time manual focus is available.
In terms of design, the 10-2mm f/4 matches Canon’s other high-end RF optics. It includes both a control ring and a custom button, with the latter placed below physical AF/MF and IS on/off switches. Like Canon’s other L-series lenses, it features dust and moisture-resistant construction and has a fluorine coating on the front element to repel raindrops and fingerprints. As expected for such a wide lens, there’s no front filter thread, but a holder at the rear accepts 35 x 20mm gel filters.
The Canon RF 10-20mm F4 L IS STM is due to go on sale this month, October 2023, for $2,299 / £2579.99.
Canon RF 10-20mm F4 L IS STM: Full Specifications
- Price: £2579.99
- Filter Diameter: n/a (accepts 35 x 20mm rear gel filters)
- Lens Elements: 16
- Groups: 12
- Diaphragm blades: 9
- Aperture: f/4 – f/22
- Minimum focus: 25cm
- Length: 112mm
- Diameter: 83.7mm
- Weight: 570g
- Lens Mount: Canon RF
- Included accessories: Front and rear caps, case
See more, do more: Canon launches the widest auto focus zoom lens ever made for a full frame camera
London, UK, 11 October 2023 – Canon Europe today announces the launch of the RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM, a new addition to the L-series range for photo and video professionals. Offering limitless possibilities by enabling an extreme ultra-wide shot, the RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM provides unrivalled image quality, all in a compact size.
The ultimate ultra-wide shot
The lens builds on the capabilities of the existing wide-angle RF range as the widest AF zoom ever made for a full frame camerai, with an angle of view of up to 130°. Featuring a zoom that ranges from 20mm wide-angle to an exceptional and unique ultra-wide 10mm focal length, users can now achieve a shooting area more than twice that of a 16mm focal length.
Fitting more in the frame allows for fresh perspectives when it comes to capturing dramatic panoramas. Photographers can add extra foreground interest, capture tight interiors and architecture, and add depth to landscapes, and filmmakers can be more creative with awe-inspiring establishing shots.
Every detail, just as it should be
The new lens delivers unparalleled image quality in a wide-angle lens, achieving incredible sharpness and clarity with virtually no distortion.
Engineered to the highest standard, the RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM incorporates the latest Peripheral Control Image Stabilisation (IS) technology which ensures crystal-clear, shake-free images even in challenging shooting conditions or without tripod access. The new IS ensures shake free images from centre to the edge of the frame and offers five stops of optical stabilisation or six stops in combination with an in body stabilised camera.
Its advanced rectilinear optical design means you can expect a crisp and accurate outcome – so straight lines remain straight, even at the edges of the frame, all thanks to an advanced optical formula. A constant f/4 maximum aperture provides consistent exposures at every zoom setting, and state-of-the-art optical coatings minimise ghosting and flare which can be common with ultra-wide shots.
The advanced tech comes at no expense to ease-of-use. The RF mount allows outstanding image quality from a compact design by enabling hugely increased communication speed and bandwidth between camera and lens.
Weighing just 570g, the RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM deserves a permanent place in your kitbag. It’s less than half the weight (610g lighter) and 2cm smaller in width and length than the EF 11-24mm f/4L USM – in fact, the new lens paired with an EOS R8 weighs less than the older EF lens alone. All this despite offering a wider angle of view and addition of IS technology – so shooting with limited space not only becomes easier, but your bag will be lighter too.
Built for professionals
Due to its superior image quality, greater capacity for wide-angle stills and video, and lightweight design, the RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM is an essential upgrade for photographers and videographers looking to push their capabilities to the next level. While it’s ideal for landscapes or architecture, the lens can also capture a different perspective on sports or documentaries.
The RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM can withstand even the most challenging weather conditions, as it is resistant to dust and moisture for professional use.
Key features and attributes include:
- The aspherical, Super UD, and UD lens elements (including one Aspherical UD element) which help to achieve high image quality appropriate for an L lens
- Highly durable dustproof and waterproof qualities, to withstand rigorous conditions faced by professionals
- SWC (on 2 lens surfaces) and ASC (Air Sphere Coating) reducing ghosting caused by light sources within the image, a phenomenon often seen in wide-angle lenses
- First L series lens to feature STM motor and full time manual focus capability, thanks to compact lightweight focus group
The RF 10-20mm F4L IS STM lens is priced at £2579.99 / €2939.99 and will be available from late October. To find out more, please follow the link: https://www.canon.co.uk/lenses/rf-10-20mm-f4l-is-stm/