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Gear Rumors

Canon 35mm F/1.4L II, Self Lubricating Lens Caps, & Free Nikon Service on Today’s Daily Roundup

By Anthony Thurston on July 15th 2015

Welcome to our roundup series where we will hit on several gear news and rumor topics each day. This gives you a chance to get caught up on all of the day’s news and rumors in one place. Make sure to check back daily for the latest gear news, rumors and announcements.

Canon 35mm f/1.4L II Coming Within The Next Three Months?

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It is almost here; the time has almost come. It’s the day that Canon fanboys all over the world have been waiting for. The day that Canon would finally rise and put the usurper Sigma back in its place as a mediocre third-party lens marker. (Well, they can dream, at least).

According to a new report, the Canon 35mm f/1.4L II is coming, and it will likely be here within the next three months or so. This, coming from a leak at the Russian certifications website, which clearly shows that Canon has registered the new lens. Based on previous experience, the announcement will come soon.

Also noted in the filing was mention of a new 15-45mm F/3.5-6.3 EF-M lens. This makes no sense to me at all. Why do they keep making lenses that fall within that same focal range? The EOS-M ecosystem needs more lenses with different ranges, not the same ranges over and over again.

Canon Patents Self Lubricating Lens Cap

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This is a fairly interesting bit of news. According to a report, Canon has patented a new self-lubricating lens cap, which – as you probably could have guessed – lubricates the lens mount, keeping it nice and clean and in good working order.

I can’t say that I have ever had an issue with my lens mounts, but I suppose that maybe in other parts of the world, this may be an issue. It will be interesting to see what, if anything, comes of this one.

Nikon Free Maintenance for D800, D700, and D7100 owners?

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Nikon has started a new Maintenance Service Initiative, which has seen D800, D700, and D7100 owners receive emails asking if they would like to send their camera in for free to be serviced by Nikon. The thing is, not everyone is getting invited to the party. Apparently, it’s only available in the US and only to a small sub-section of people here.

It seems like an odd thing to do. Many have wondered openly if this was a recall of sorts in disguise, or if there is some hidden issue with these cameras that Nikon just has not made public.

Personally, I find that unlikely. If this were just the D800, or just the D700, or just the D7100, then maybe I could see them trying to avoid another public recall. But with these three cameras involved, unless they share a specific part that is causing problems, it seems unlikely to me that this is a creative and sneaky recall notice.

Some have wondered if maybe this was Nikon trying to see how well their cameras have held up over time compared to how they thought they would. This seems like a plausible reason, but who knows?

You can read more about what is known about this Nikon Maintenance Service Initiative here

What are your thoughts on today’s roundup? What news/rumors did we miss? What would you like to see covered in future roundups? Leave a comment below and let us know what you think!

Anthony Thurston is a photographer based in the Salem, Oregon area specializing in Boudoir. He recently started a new project, Fiercely Boudoir to help support the growing boudoir community. Find him over on Instagram. You may also connect with him via Email.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Samuel Sandoval

    Looks nice.

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  2. Kyle Stauffer

    Having used the 35 Sigma Art, what could Canon theoretically improve upon (Other than weather sealing and having a red ring) to legitimately justify the probable $500-$700 more for the Canon? Better flare comes to mind but that’s about it. I’ve never used the current Canon 35 1.4 for reference.

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    • adam sanford

      The Sigma is well built and sharp as a razor blade (and I have shot both the 35 Art and the current 35L — the Art obliterates the L IQ-wise). But Sigma’s art primes have had AF inconsistency issues — they work well in general, but detailed reviewers have been able to generate inconsistent AF performance on relatively mundane tasks.

      Here’s a well-detailed example: http://goo.gl/OQa9hK
      (pan down the butterfly graphic, read the paragraph above it and then mouseover 1-10 below the graphic.)

      Yes, that’s a 50 Art example, but we’ve anecdotally heard the same about the 24 Art and 35 Art. The AF works well — it’s not a showstopper — but it’s just not as rock-solid consistent as recent L glass with modern USM.

      I think they 35L II may very well just be a Sigma 35 Art clone with Canon’s presumably more reliable AF routines and weather-sealing. People whose livelihood depends on their gear will absolutely pay $1,500 for that. Would I? Probably not. The Art is a better value.

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    • Kyle Stauffer

      Adam, thank you for your insight. “Sharp as a razor blade” is a spot on description. As you know, this 1.4 lens gives a whole new meaning to the term “usability wide open”.

      The point you brought out about AF surprises me solely from my own experience with the 35. I recently shot a reception that at one point was lit only with DJ lights. My camera at no surprise struggled to grab focus but not one shot from the evening missed focus at 1.4. That shocked me!

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    • adam sanford

      The general comments that I’ve heard are that the AF of the Art lenses is not as 100% fire-and-forget as the comparable L lenses. It doesn’t hunt or struggle, it just misses out of the blue occasionally. So it’s a consistency issue only, and it’s not on every lens. Some have stellar copies and they work flawlessly.

      Bryan Carnathan has clearly demonstrated the inconsistency with that 50 Art mouseover bit. It’s not a train wreck — many still love it — but it’s an asterisk on an otherwise great optic.

      The 35 has anecdotally had similar surprises, and in my usage, my hit rate wider than f/2 was only about 50%, believe it or not. (I am not a pro, but I was shooting stationary targets handheld with very careful technique — one AF point only, no focus and recompose, etc.)

      I am not bashing the Art lenses. Quite the contrary, I want to love them. But there’s a reason why L lenses get the dollars despite being outresolved by the Art lenses (only a *portion* of that is Canon marketing/greed) — they are simply more reliable and that’s worth the extra ducats to the pros.

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  3. adam sanford

    The needle is slowly moving over from rumor to reality on that 35L II. We knew of two new lenses coming in August, and the Russian certification request that fueled this story calls these lenses out by name.

    These things can be faked of course, so we’ll see. This will represent Canon’s first like for like ‘response’ to Sigma Art primes. I’m curious to see the MTF charts and hear about the release.

    My guess: Sigma 35 Art IQ + a weathersealing gasket + a red ring = $1,500. ($1,250 if they are smart.)

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  4. Tom Johnson

    We’re supposed to be lubricating our lens mounts?

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