Canon 40mm F/2.8 STM Pancake Lens


Received the new Canon 40mm F/2.8 STM pancake lens from B&H today. Wow, I really like it. Sure, it was made with their STM tech for full time auto focus in video mode for the new EOS T4i, but put all that aside, there's just no other options for Canon shooters who want a super low profile lens with auto focus.

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I mounted the 40mm to the Canon 5D Mark III Full Frame camera, and you can see how the edges have a slight vignette (darker around edges). I personally like the look of this, and might consider this to be a more stylized lens for full frame cameras. If you want to have even exposure throughout the image, you can always program this lens into Adobe Lightroom's Lens Correction feature. On a T4i or other cropped cameras, you will see less of this vignetting.

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It's too bad Canon doesn't have a smaller mirrorless body available (yet). As you can see from the image below, when placed on to the Canon T4i, the camera is about the same width as my Sony NEX-7 + Sigma 30mm (seen on the left). There's another example of how small this 40mm pancake lens looks on a Canon 5D (on the right).

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The 40mm focal length is a good distance for this type of lens, and it was a focal range Canon was missing in their lineup. It's not too close and not too wide. It's lightweight, fast, and low profile to fit into small bags for traveling.

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Rokinon 35mm vs Canon 40mm. Close focal distance, major size difference.

With a max aperture of F/2.8 it's not the fastest lens in Canon's line, but the build quality is great and the price is right at only $199. I highly suggest trying this lens out, and because it takes up minimal space in the bag, there's a good chance you'll want this with you all the time. They were out of stock on initial release, but are currently available via B&H (Click Here).

Canon 40mm STM Pancake
find-price-button Canon 40mm F/2.8 Pancake STM Lens

11 thoughts on “Canon 40mm F/2.8 STM Pancake Lens

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  2. John Marc Green

    I also have the 5D3, got the 40mm pancake and love it. Just a great walk around lens, I like it more than the 50mm 1.8. Will keep the Rokinon 35 1.4 for low light stuff like fireworks (came in handy last night), but the pancake is sharper plus has autofocus for stills. I dread trying to use the 35 for stills, all manual. Fine for video though. Love the metal mount and smooth damped focus ring on the 40.

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  4. Emm

    Post author

    @Antoine Quirion - This lens makes some noise even in Manual Focus. The camera picks this audio up. If you're using an external recorder, might not be a problem, but if you're using in camera microphone, it will hear the noise.

  5. Tigos


    I've heard the T4i no longer has HD crop mode. Can you confirm this? It'll suck if they took this out.

  6. Do you think that there any way this lens would work with a follow focus system ? Using zip tie gear maybee?

    From what i've seen, the travel distance of the focus ring seams pretty long, How is it for manual focusing ?

  7. Emm

    Post author

    @Jonas - Good point. I just bought it because that's really the only thing I shoot on, but it does make sense to get the Nikon version since there are so many adapters available to fit every camera.

  8. Jonas

    Hey Emm,
    when I see the Rokinon again a question pups into my head:
    I bought the 35mm 1.4 some weeks ago, too. But I decided to get the Nikon mount version, so that I can adapt it to every other camera system. Why did you choose the Canon mount verion? I mean, it's all manual.

    greets from germany

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