When I bought my Canon 100D I got the 40mm lens as part of the package. After having used a rather large 18-55mm lens on my previous camera, I was thrilled to use the compact pancake lens. It was also my first time using a prime lens, a lens without a zoom. Here in Korea they say that if you want to use a prime lens you’ll have to get used to using the bahl-zoom; bahl meaning feet. So I’d been pacing back and forth to zoom in and out, but I found more often than not I’d have to back up as much as I could to get everything inside the frame. The problem was, that sometimes there simply wasn’t enough room to back up. There might be an obstacle such as a wall that makes it impossible to back up to take a picture. A few weeks later, Canon released the 24mm lens and I immediately knew that it was exactly what I wanted.
To give you an idea of the difference between the 40mm and the 24mm, I placed the camera at a fixed distance from my prop. I’m using a makeshift tripod with a box and a folded towel to angle it down towards the prop. If you take a look at the screens, you can see that the 40mm lens doesn’t capture as wide a view as the 24mm lens. Here are the resulting shots from the same distance away from the props:
As you can see, the wide-angle 24mm lens captures a lot more white-space around the props. Keep in mind though, that the 40mm is an EF lens while the 24mm is an EF-S lens. EF lenses can be used on both the cropped sensor (that the 100D sports) and the full frame cameras, while the EF-S lens was made specifically for the cropped sensor cameras. On a cropped sensor, the EF 40mm lens acts as 64mm lens and the EF-S 24mm lens will act as a 38mm lens. I originally thought that because the EF-S lenses are made specifically for the crop body, that the EF-S lens would produce a 24mm effect on the cropped body. Unfortunately, the EF-S lens does not compensate for the crop of the sensor. Thanks to David for leaving a comment below and clearing that up!
Another reason why I’ve been running around with the 24mm rather than the 40mm is because I can get really close to the subject matter. As you can see, the 40mm needs a fair bit of distance between the lens and the object in order to be able to focus.
As you can see, I can get a macro shot of sorts with the 24mm where as I need some distance with the 40mm. It’s probably not going to be able to do extreme macro -filling the entire screen with flowers and bugs and what not- but it’s enough to be able to get some pretty lovely detailed shots when need be. So if you were wondering whether you should get the 40mm, the 24mm, I would wholeheartedly recommend the 24mm. With its wide-angle and macro abilities, the 24mm is a much more versatile lens than the 40mm. If you would like to see some photo comparisons please click here. You can find the lens on Amazon here.
24mm vs 40mm Photo Comparison
Photography Essentials for Bloggers
Travel Photography for Beginners
Your turn ♥ What’s your current staple lens? Have you ever used a prime lens before?