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CanonEF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens
 
4.6

(based on 714 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (472)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (216)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (22)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

97%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Lightweight (482)
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (289)
  • Consistent output (250)
  • Easily interchangeable (250)
  • Nice bokeh (228)

Cons

  • Slow focus (54)
  • Poor in low light (33)
  • Weak casing (19)
  • Tough to attach (10)
  • Blurry focus (3)

Best Uses

  • Low light (257)
  • Landscape/scenery (250)
  • Video (157)
  • Weddings (129)
  • Night photography (114)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (218), Semi-pro photographer (122), Pro photographer (83), Casual photographer (56), Photography student (25)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (474), Yes (19)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Excellent value, a pleasure to use

Great lens. Quite sharp. Accurate and fast focus. It's a joy to use. Of course, it delivers in terms of being compact. I'm using it on a 1.6x camera, so it's...Read complete review

Great lens. Quite sharp. Accurate and fast focus. It's a joy to use. Of course, it delivers in terms of being compact. I'm using it on a 1.6x camera, so it's a somewhat awkward focal length. I look forward to the day I get to use it on a full frame. But you all know it's 40mm, so onward.

The mounting ring is really tight with my camera, and I have this feeling that I'm grinding something down when I mount or remove the lens. I don't think it hurts anything, so that's fine with me.

Unfortunately, the lens data is not pre-loaded on my t4i. But the image quality is so good that you hardly would ever need it. I will include a couple of photos. Both are unedited and were taken with in-camera settings neutral, and sharpness set to 0. The one of the leaf was taken with the lens wide open. You can see how quickly it passes in and out of focus. The background light shows the chromatic aberration about as badly as it ever gets, which is hardly at all! You can just barely see the opposing red vs. green fringe in the light. The one of the flowers is also wide open at 2.8, also neutral and unsharpened and unedited. With even the most light-handed increase of sharpness and contrast, stunningly crisp images, as well as softer ones, are at your disposal, and all at a ridiculously low price. I really like it, and it manages to jostle my other lenses off the camera which, on paper, should have much more versatility and utility.

Another note: The STM focusing is not silent. This is fine with me, but for those of you who might be interested, read on. In AF, there's a soft whine that it gives off, louder than my USM lens but quieter than my kit lens. In manual mode, the focus ring is, as many have pointed out, NOT a mechanically engaged gear, but rather an electronic input. When turning the ring medium to fast, it makes a lower and slightly softer hum. When turning the ring slowly, it makes a rather disturbing groan. However, when you turn it REALLY slowly, the focus moves with an amazingly controlled slow creep, and it's _completely silent_. That could come in handy for some nice cinematic effects.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

* Consistently INCONSISTENT...

So first, I always rate relative to the price point, market segment etc. of the product. In other words, I'm not going to give a T3i two stars because it doesn't shoot...Read complete review

So first, I always rate relative to the price point, market segment etc. of the product. In other words, I'm not going to give a T3i two stars because it doesn't shoot 12 FPS or have 'x'D series camera body features... I always hate that, especially when you guys rate something like a Zeiss Distagon lens and say "I'd have given it five stars IF ONLY IT HAD AF"... Really? If you want AF, why buy a MF lens? AF has no basis in rating a clearly advertised MF lens...yadda yadda...it's like rating a Nikon body and downgrading it a star because it doesn't natively accept Canon lenses. [dismounts rating admonishing soapbox]So I am rating this 40mm pancake 3 STARS relative to the other primes in that category, which is to say I'm not comparing it to L primes, Zeiss primes and the like all well over $1,000+ USD. I am also rating it solely based on stills. Yes, I get the STM thing but realize STM ONLY WORKS (today) with the T4i body. ...and really, if you want an AF video camera, why are you using a DSLR? There are much simpler, cheaper camcorders out there that excel with video AF. There is a reason there is no video AF on the 6D, 5D3, 1Dx and 1Dc... it's not needed...anymore than a pop-up flash.What I HATE; really uneven exposures shooting in aperture-priority or shutter-priority modes from 2.8 through 8.0 outdoors, high dynamic range areas etc. I put the camera on a tripod in Av mode, same metering, same focus point and in popping off 8 shots, all 8 were different exposure, some slight variance, some 2 stops variance! It's the BODY you say - metering issue, not the lens, yeah...I thought so too, so I switched from the 7D to a 5D3 and had the same exact issue. At first I thought the polarizer was affecting it (a high transmission Heliopan, not the cheap ones), but even when I removed that and shot again, I had the same issue. AF seemed to hunt a bit with more distant features (landscape etc) but it wasn't too bad. All in all is just extremely inconsistent on both the 7D and 5D3, IMO. AF was slow, but I think on par with this price point. The exposure consistency was NOT on par for any price point for a Canon factory lens (IMO).What I LIKED! When you've nailed exposure and are in manual mode, the IQ is really good, not excellent, but good. It preserves a lot of detail, contrast and highlights in deeper areas of the composition when shooting landscapes. The colors rendered are really nice, it reminds me of the colors I get from much more expensive glass. The low profile is great for street shooting when you don't want to draw a lot of attention and get candid shots. It seems to be well built compared to some of the older EF primes in the <$400 range.Overall it is OK but I was disappointed, expecting a much better lens. A better, cheaper lens for you may just be the old "nifty fifty", 50mm f/1.8 II. It is lighter, almost as thin; faster; much more consistent exposure(IMO) and similar IQ overall though I'm sure the 40mm pancake outperforms it on a bench test, it's newer technology after all. It's also plastic and cheap. But for me; if I want something quick and easy and I don't need the extra field of view; I'm taking the 50mm f/1.8 II.

Reviewed by 714 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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4.0

Worth it!

By CrissCrossAppleSauce

from Ithaca, NY

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

Looking for a pancake lens that's pretty sharp especially for the price...go for it, completely worth it.
The only con is that the focus ring (because it's a pancake lens) isn't that great for rack focuses for filming, but that is to be expected.

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5.0

My very favorite lens to shoot video interviews.

By Spotdirector

from NYC

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

Amazing images, crisp, sharp all the way. even in low light.

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5.0

Make more of these canon!!!

By LiveEditsLab

from Fayetteville, AR

Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

I mean for $150 I wasn't expecting much, but this thing could easily be compared to $1000+ lenses. It's incredible.

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4.0

Simple, inexpensive

By sunder

from new york, new york

About Me Pro Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Easily Interchangeable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Lightweight

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Night Photography

    Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

    For the price, this lens is a perfect basic lens. Does everything its supposed to.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    4.0

    Love This Lens. Travels Well

    By BARCO Images

    from Montclair, NJ

    About Me Photo Enthusiast

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Durable
    • Easily Interchangeable
    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
    • Lightweight
    • Nice Bokeh

    Cons

    • Small Front Element

    Best Uses

    • Bokeh
    • Macro Photography
    • Weddings/Events

    Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

    Pretty solid for what it is. I got this lens on sale and paid [$] during black friday. I use it every year for the New York International Auto Show and it is SHARP!

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    5.0

    Absolutely Brilliant

    By Cruella

    from Phoenix AZ

    About Me Pro Photographer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
    • Lightweight
    • Nice Bokeh

    Cons

    • Weak Casing

    Best Uses

    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Night Photography
    • Video
    • Weddings/Events

    Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

    Sharp beautiful prime lens. I wish I had purchased this earlier.

    Very small on camera, great walking around lens.
    Great for me to go back to basics with such a lovely prime. And cheap price too! Super fun to play with.

    Casing feels a tad plasticy but I don't care when I get great results.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

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    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Good things come in small packages

    By WS

    from Athens, GA

    About Me Semi-pro Photographer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Consistent Output
    • Durable
    • Lightweight

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Indoors/Low Light
      • Travel

      Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

      I was looking for a high quality, light weight lens for travel photography with my Canon 6D, so I decided to give this 40mm STM lens a try. The field of view is surprisingly wide compared to 50mm on full frame, and works really well for a lot of street scenes and architecture. The lens is perfectly sharp wide open at f2.8 with only moderate light fall-off in the corners so it's quite usable in low light. Distortion is also quite low. So far I'm very happy with the performance and expect to get a lot of use while traveling in urban environments this summer in combination with a short, fast telephoto (85mm) and a wide angle zoom for landscapes. Recommended.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

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      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Great Lens for Street Photography

      By NOEL

      from Martinsville, NJ

      About Me Casual Photographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Consistent Output
      • Lightweight
      • Strong Construction

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Landscape/Scenery

        Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

        Lens is small and light with great output cuality

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

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        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Amazing cheap lens

        By Jsimonton

        from Montana

        Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

        I was wanting the 35mm, but couldn't afford it. I bought this to use temporarily until I could save for the 35mm. It is wider than my 50 and gives me a little more width. I wish it was faster for certain low light situations like concert photography, but for the money, it doesn't excellent at 2.8. I hardly shoot below a 2.8 anyway!

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        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Packs a Punch

        By Jeanina

        from Texas

        Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

        I love this lens. I was blown away by the crisp photos and fast focusing. I would definitely recommend this lens. I have the nifty fifty but prefer this lens now. Even though it's 2.8 I still prefer the images from this lens.

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        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Clean, Simple, Sharp

        By Raymond

        from Albuquerque, NM

        About Me Pro Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Consistent Output
        • Durable
        • Easily Interchangeable
        • Fast / accurate auto-focus
        • Lightweight
        • Nice Bokeh
        • Rugged
        • Strong Construction

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Indoors/Low Light
          • Landscape/Scenery
          • Weddings/Events

          Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

          We use this product for full length portraits and it is very nice.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

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          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Great little lens

          By Triniart

          from Northport, NY

          About Me Pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Consistent Output
          • Fast / accurate auto-focus
          • Lightweight

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Indoors/Low Light
            • Weddings/Events

            Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

            I use this on Sony A7R2 with great results. Even from F2.8 I was quite surprised at results. AF is snappy as well.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

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            (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Fantastic lens for the money!

            By Justin

            from Irvine, CA

            About Me Casual Photographer

            Pros

            • Lightweight
            • Nice Bokeh
            • Sharp

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Indoors/Low Light
              • Landscape/Scenery

              Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

              I got this lens for my Canon full-frame 6D DSLR. What attracted me to the lens was the price, the reviews and the sample photos. Its hard to say anything bad about a lens like this that only cost $ and gives such quality images. The vignetting is a little strong wide open in some scenes but really, it looks awesome. A quick check of the box for camera lens profile in Lightroom takes care of that. The STM motor or the lens itself has trouble focusing sometimes. I think I'll get a good shot and then later I will discover the focus point was off. I've never had this problem with any of canon's ultrasonic motors. But again, for $ and especially being so sharp at f/4 to f/7 - why would I fuss about that? I love the lens. Although it does look ridiculously small on my 6D. Buy it - Try it for a month or two... and if you don't like it? Sell it on craigslist in the retail box for a tad less then what you paid for it. Or just keep it for those awesome shots that look stunning at f/2.8

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

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              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Amazing little lens!

              By Northern Photographer

              from Michigan

              About Me Pro Photographer

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Consistent Output
              • Durable
              • Easily Interchangeable
              • Fast / accurate auto-focus
              • Lightweight

              Cons

                Best Uses

                  Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                  Why did it take me so long to find and buy this lens? Despite having a nice collection of lenses already, this has become a handy everyday lens for me that also takes fantastic photos. I had two little ones and this allows me to take my camera out with them without it being too clunky. Nice sharp images, definitely add this to your kit!

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Excellent quality, compact, nice image quality

                  By Flexidan

                  from New York, NY

                  About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Easily Interchangeable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Lightweight
                  • Nice Bokeh

                  Cons

                  • NO IMAGE STABILIZER

                  Best Uses

                  • Indoors/Low Light
                  • Landscape/Scenery
                  • Macro Photography
                  • Travel
                  • Wildlife Photos

                  Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                  I've had this lens for a few weeks now and tried it in various lighting conditions. It's simple, compact and light - not quite as sleekly sexy as my 40mm Pentax pancake lens but it does a great job, focusing quickly and quietly. I took a few close-ups with it on holiday over Christmas and was quite surprised at the level of detail it captured. I highly recommend it as a travel lens and for (relatively) low-light situations. Or if you're weight-phobic!

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

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                  (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  As good as the reviews say

                  By Erik

                  from Atlanta

                  Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                  So far so good.

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                  5.0

                  Canon Lens

                  By Camera Lens

                  from Washington

                  Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                  Great lens and enjoy the pictures clarity! Been taking photos at the beach and in the sun. Amazing quality

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                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  The Shorty Forty

                  By Dennis

                  from Hampton, VA

                  About Me Photo Enthusiast

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Consistent Output
                  • Durable
                  • Easily Interchangeable
                  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                  • Lightweight
                  • Strong Construction

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Indoors/Low Light
                    • Landscape/Scenery
                    • Macro Photography
                    • Night Photography
                    • Street photography
                    • Video

                    Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                    The Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM lens is a must have for every owner of a Canon DSLR and system cameras; full-frame, crop body, or mirrorless. It is inexpensive, sharp, quick focusing, inconspicuous and extremely lightweight with an excellent build quality. I use it with an adapter on a Canon EOS M camera. It is such a thin lens that even with the adapter, it is a perfect fit for the M body. Highly recommended.

                    • Was this a gift?:
                    • No

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                    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Fun lens

                    By Restnot71

                    from Las Vegas

                    About Me Photo Enthusiast

                    Verified Buyer

                    Pros

                    • Consistent Output
                    • Easily Interchangeable
                    • Fast / accurate auto-focus
                    • Lightweight

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Landscape/Scenery
                      • Video
                      • Weddings/Events

                      Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                      After reading the reviews, I did not hesitate to purchase this lens. It captures true colors and is sharp enough to produce beautiful images that remain sharp up to about 50% magnification. With good lighting, it would be good for family portraits and gatherings. The light weight makes it a pleasure to use. The closest I could get to my subjects and produce a sharp picture is about 9".

                      • Was this a gift?:
                      • No

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                      4.0

                      Great Lens

                      By HLAZYJ

                      from Olathe, Colorado

                      About Me Semi-pro Photographer

                      Verified Buyer

                      Pros

                      • Consistent Output
                      • Durable
                      • Easily Interchangeable
                      • Lightweight
                      • Nice Bokeh
                      • Rugged
                      • Strong Construction

                      Cons

                      • Slow Focus

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Lens:

                        I use this lens for a variety of uses, I like everything about the lens except that it is a little slow in close uses.

                        • Was this a gift?:
                        • No

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