[Review] An Excellent Lens: The EF 40mm f/2.8 STM Pancake

Roger Cicala at lensrental.com tested the brand new EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens (he tested eight copies of the lens.) The impressions are more than positive, and in the title of the post, Roger is asking “how did they do that?“. Imatest MTF 50 was used to test the lens.

My first impression was the build quality was better than I expected. It has a metal mount, not plastic. The aperture blades appear more curved than most of the Canon 7 blade aperture rings, making a more circular opening. The little STM motor is not silent, but it’s pretty quiet.

The (very good) results were consistent over all tested copies, showing that Canon is able to produce such a high quality yet affordable lens in batch. The conclusion of the test says it all:

Overall, though, I’m extremely impressed. I’d be impressed if a lens this size and price was just decent, but this one is excellent. I might as well go ahead and get in trouble with the business manager: if you think you want this lens, just go ahead and buy it. At this price, unless some of the more thorough reviewers find something I missed on this quick overview, you can’t go wrong.

The EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake can be bought for $199, and it is in stock at Adorama (click here), B&H (click here) and Amazon US (click here). DigitalRev (click here) also has the pancake in stock. Note: due to high request there may be shipping delays, and the lens may soon be temporary out of stock.

[via dpreview]

World-wide EF 40mm f/2.8 STM availability and price check:

America: B&H Photo, Adorama, Amazon USA, Amazon CA, KEH Camera, BestBuy, Canon CA, Canon USA
Europe & UK: Amazon DE, Amazon UK, Amazon FR, Amazon IT, Wex Photo Video, Park Cameras, Canon DE, Canon UK, Canon IT, Canon FR

[In-Stock] Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM And BG-E11 (5D3 Battery Grip) Ready To Ship

Both the brand new EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens and the BG-E11 (the battery grip for the EOS 5d Mark III) are available for order and ready to ship. The BG-E11 is already in stock at B&H ($349, click here) and at DigitalRev ($365/£249.99, click here). The EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake is expected to arrive in stock tomorrow, Friday June 22. You can order it at B&H ($199, click here) and at Adorama ($199, click here).

[Review] EF 40mm f/2.8 STM

The cute little pancake by Canon is starting to get reviews. It got f/2.8, it’s light (both in your pocket and on your wallet) and it has very good performance – all for $199. ephotozine got its hands on the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake for a review. Results are pretty good. “Autofocus is very swift and precise“, or “At maximum aperture, sharpness in the centre of the frame is already excellent” and “chromatic aberrations are virtually non-existent, remaining under half a pixel width in size at all apertures” are some of the comments you can read in the review. From the final verdict:


  • Excellent sharpness
  • Low distortion
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Fast focusing


  • No full time manual focus override
  • Strong vignetting
  • More than double the price of the 50mm f/1.8 (although performance and build probably justify this)

EF 40mm f/2.8 STM availability and price check: B&H Photo, Adorama, Amazon USA, Amazon CA, KEH Camera, BestBuy, Canon CA, Canon USA. If these do not have the 40mm pancake, you may be able to pre-order it at Adorama (click here) and  B&H (click here).

[Pre-Order] Kiss X6i/Rebel T4i/650D and EF 40mm STM Available For Pre-Order At Amazon Japan

Amazon Japan has the Kiss X6i (Rebel T4i in America, EOS 650D in Europe) available for pre-order (click here to see all offered kits). The following options are available:

  • X6i/T4i/650D & 18-135mm STM IS for ¥ 129,800 (click here)
  • X6i/T4i/650D & EF-S 18-55mm IS II & EF-S 55-250mm for ¥ 129,800 (click here)
  • X6i/T4i/650D & EF-S 18-55mm IS II for ¥ 99,800 (click here)
  • X6i/T4i/650D body only for ¥ 89,800 (click here)

As far as I understand, they also have the EF 40mm STM pancake available for pre-order (¥ 20,530, click here), and the 18-135mm STM IS too (¥ 60,690, click here).

[Pre-Order] EF 40mm f/2.8 Pancake and 18-135mm STM IS Lenses Ready For Pre-Order (Update)

Update: Scott Bourne’s thought about Canon’s pancake (click here). He points out one of the features of the EF 40mm f/2.8 pancake that may get overlooked: the focusing distance of 30cm. techradar had its hands on the little pancake, verdict: Although it’s not an ‘L’ lens, the new 40mm Canon optic feels nicely put together and has a reasonable weight. We found that its focusing motor was much quieter than the 18-55mm kit lens […].

Pre-Order options for the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM pancake lens:


Canon’s Press Release (40mm pancake and 18-135mm STM):

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