Canon EF 400mm lens

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The moon as seen through the EF 400mm f/5.6L USM with a teleconverter

The Canon EF 400mm are seven super-telephoto lenses made by Canon. These lenses have an EF mount that work with the EOS line of cameras. These lenses are widely used by sports and wildlife photographers.[1]

Canon currently manufactures three 400mm prime lenses:

  • EF 400mm f/2.8L IS II USM[2]
  • EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM
  • EF 400mm f/5.6L USM

The EF 400mm f/5.6L USM is Canon's least expensive 400mm lens and one of the best deals for a super telephoto 400mm focal length lens in the industry. Exceptional sharpness, minimal vignetting, very low distortion, and superb handling of chromatic aberration means this lens does not require image corrections in digital post production software. Having a maximum aperture of f/5.6, it is relatively slow.

The 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM, which replaced an earlier version of the same lens in 2014,[3] is one of only two Canon lenses that make use of diffractive optics (the other is the Canon EF 70-300mm lens). The use of diffractive optics allows the lens to be significantly lighter than it might otherwise be.[4][5]

These lenses are compatible with the Canon Extender EF teleconverters.

Specifications of the EF 400mm lenses[edit]

Attribute f/2.8L USM f/2.8L II USM f/2.8L IS USM f/2.8L IS II USM f/4 DO IS USM f/4 DO IS II USM f/5.6L USM
Image Canon EF 400mm f2.8L IS USM.jpg Canon EF 400 f2.8.jpg Canon EF 400 DO II.jpg Canon EF 400 f5.6.jpg
Key features
Full-frame compatible Yes Yes
Image stabilizer No No Yes Yes No No
Ultrasonic Motor Yes Yes
L-series Yes Yes
Diffractive Optics No No Yes Yes No No
Macro No No
Technical data
Aperture (max-min) f/2.8-f/32 f/4-f/32 f/5.6-f/32
Construction 9 groups / 11 elements 13 groups / 17 elements 12 groups / 18 elements 6 groups / 7 elements
# of diaphragm blades 8 9 8 9 8
Closest focusing distance 4 meters 3 m 2.7 m 3.5 m 3.3 m / 10.83 ft 3.5 m
Max. magnification 0.11x 0.15x 0.17x 0.12x 0.13x 0.11x
Horizontal viewing angle 5°10'
Vertical viewing angle 3°30'
Diagonal viewing angle 6°10'
Physical data
Weight 13.44 lb / 6.1 kg 13.03 lb / 5.91 kg 11.83 lb / 5.37 kg 8.48 lb / 3.85 kg 4.27 lb / 1.94 kg 4.63 lb / 2.10 kg 2.8 lb / 1.25 kg
Maximum diameter 6.57" / 167mm 6.41" / 163mm 5.03" / 128mm 5.04" / 128mm 3.54" / 90mm
Length 13.70" / 348mm 13.74" / 349mm 13.50" / 343mm 9.16" / 232.7mm 9.18" / 232.7mm 10.09" / 256.5mm
Filter diameter 48mm 52mm drop-in filter 77mm
Lens hood ET-161B II ET-155 ET-155 (WII) ET-120 ET-120 (WII) Built-in
Case 400 400C 400B 400D LH-D29
Retail information
Release date April 1991 March 1996 September 1999 August 2011 December 2001 September 2014 May 1993
Currently in production? No No Yes Yes No No Yes Yes
MSRP $ 870,000 yen 980,000 yen $7,999 $9,999 $6,469 $6,899 $1,249

Use in astronomy[edit]

Canon 400 mm f/2.8 L IS II USM lenses are used in the Dragonfly Telephoto Array.[6] The array is designed to image objects with low surface brightness such as some satellite galaxies.[7][6] The telescope Array started with three lenses but this has since increased to 24 with plans for 50.[6][7]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Canon U.S.A. Celebrates 75 Years Of Optics Heritage With The Addition Of Three New Lenses" (Press release). Canon U.S.A. September 15, 2014. Retrieved September 15, 2014.
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b c Abraham, Roberto G; van Dokkum, Pieter G (2014). "Ultra–Low Surface Brightness Imaging with the Dragonfly Telephoto Array". Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific. 126 (55). arXiv:1401.5473. Bibcode:2014PASP..126...55A. doi:10.1086/674875. Retrieved 4 May 2017.
  7. ^ a b Barss, Patchen (28 January 2016). "How to Discover a Galaxy with a Telephoto Lens". Nautilus. NautilusThink Inc. Retrieved 4 May 2017.

External links[edit]