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Canon EF-S 60mm F/2.8-32 macro lens review

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Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens

Considering that quite often I need to take close up pictures of various details of the knives and guns, I do need a good macro lens. Originally I was using Canon EF 50mm macro lens, which was 1:2 magnification, that is, half of the life size. Once EF-S 60mm was announced, I decided that I'd rather have 1:1 macro lens, although more expensive, but it offered better sharpness as well. I wasn't into macro photography big time, before I got the lens. Now it seems to be very addictive, and very interesting too. Unlike most macro photographers out there I don't take pictures of flowers and insects, though that can be fun as well. For now my major macro photography interest area is knife edges under magnification and other details.

EF-S 60mm

 - First introduced by Canon on PMA 2005. Actually, it was announced a little bit earlier. First time you could get your paws on the lens during PMA 2005. Official canon page is here. Basically, this lens is similar to other EF-S lenses in terms of quality. I.e. it's not exactly L label, but still better optics than in standard line. Also, what's interesting on this this one is that it's a fixed length lens. In other words lens dimensions won't change when focusing - "fully internal focusing". For certain applications such as insect photography this is useful, otherwise doesn't matter that much, but still convenient. According to Canon this is their shortes focal length internal focusing lens. I figure that has to do with smaller sensor size EF-S lenses are designed for. Fine with me, I am using those EF-S lenses on my Canon EOS-20D. For the record, EF-S lenses can be used only on EOS 20D, Digital Rebel XT and Digital rebel line as of summer 2005.
Worth mentioning that if you are into portrait photography then EF-S 60mm might make a useful addition to your lens collection. Is it a very sharp lens thanks to high quality optics and also it is a prime lens. Since I don't really do that type of photos I can't really comment on that sibject.

Macro Photos

 - Well, I've experimented quite a bit since I got the lens. Overall I am very glad with its performance. It's quite light, no complaints about build quality. Major improvement over older 50mm EF macro lens besides 1:1 magnification factor is the focusing speed, much faster. Plus, is is very silent. Again major plus for those who like insect photography, which I do not. EF-S 60mm uses 52mm size filters. I already had polarizer filter from 50mm EF, which has the same filter size, but for the new lens I got front diopter filters as well. Set of 1x, 2x, and 4x. There is another way of achieving higher magnification which is using extension tubes (vs. front diopters). While both methods have their pros and cons, at this point I have no choice anyway, there are no extension tubes for EF-S line. Which sucks indeed. I donno what was Canon thinking putting out a new line of lenses like EF-S and skipping extension tubes. Hopefully they'll fix this soon. Although with the introduction of their new EOS-5D which is full size sensor DSLR priced around 3K $ I am not so sure about EF-S lenses future :( Oh well, I didn't buy it as a lifetime investment so, whatever, it'll work fine while I am on EOS 20D.

Test pictures

 - I didn't have too many opportunities to take lots of pictures so far. But just for the taste of it here's a few:

Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture
Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture Canon EF-S 60mm macro lens sample picture