24mm f/2.8

Really pleased today as I managed to remove a bent filter from a lens as old as I am (according to the factory date stamp) – my trusty Canon EF 24mm f/2.8.

I generally take very good care of my gear, but this was on loan to my sister for her 5D Mark III – she didn’t quite return the courtesy.

It took much of my afternoon and a fair amount of elbow grease, but I finally got the stuffed Hoya filter out and replaced it with a whizzy B+W.

I bought this fixed-focal length lens as a young photojournalist. Back then, when I first began shooting for a national broadsheet – I was still using a prosumer body (30D) with a kit lens with slow aperture, shooting alongside staffers with 1Ds and “L”-series zoom lenses.

I couldn’t dream of affording better on a stringer’s wage, so I saw prime lenses as a cheap win for me – with relatively large apertures and good sharpness, my best photographs were probably shot on my 50mm f/1.8 (“Nifty Fifty”) and with this 24mm f/2.8.

On an APS-C sensor it translates to just under 40mm which gives a nice field of view with decent depth-of-field, bokeh and good centre sharpness. I have no qualms shooting it wide open at f/2.8.

It’s no professional-grade glass, was made during the film era and thus not without its flaws – flaring is one of them – but otherwise the results are controllable and I actually do like a bit of flare. At this point don’t see a reason to splash the cash on a 24mm L prime, but a 135 f/2L would be nice.

Had dinner with my old man today at one of our favourite haunts so I did get to take it out post-repair for a wee spin.

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