Great quality lens at a Fantastic Price!
Marco Nero, 1/07/2016
This native EF-M lens is one of the best value-for-money lenses available and to find a comparative similar lens for any other camera would be quite expensive by comparison. It's very sharp corner-to-corner and the clarity, color and vibrancy is excellent. The lens is solidly constructed with a metal lens mount. I've used this EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens for select wide shots at weddings (with a speedlite flash), landscapes, product photography and architecture. There's no reason I can think of not to buy this lens. The prices are great, the image quality is superb and the construction is excellent.
Construction, materials and finish are excellent. It's a lightweight lens that feels solid and strong when handles. Nothing about this lens body feels cheap or loose. It looks good and the gun-metal grey finish looks good on the black body of the EOS-M.At a mere 220g, the light weight and practical focal range of the lens is useful and easy to carry as a second or spare lens. The Image Stabilization works extremely well and the advanced optical coatings on the lens reduce unwanted flare in a dramatic way. It's disappointing that the lens hood is not included with the lens and had to be purchased separately... although it's not expensive (I think I bought a genuine Canon lens hood for $15). I don't tend to use a Circular Polarizer with this lens because it's incredibly wide but it also gives me deep blue skies without the need of filters. Use a solid ND filter if you wish... but a "variable ND filter" isn't going to work properly due to the extra wide 11mm focal length. This is a phenomena inherent to all super/ultra wide lenses.
Being f/4 when the aperture is completely open, the 11-22mm lens is going to be "slower" at letting in the light so the resulting images taken in bright sunlight tend to be extremely contrasted: shadows are quite black. For DSLR users, the resulting image quality and contrast is very similar to the EF 28-105mm f/4L IS USM lens. The shadows can usually be lifted slightly during processing but this is typical of most other f/4 canon lenses. This lens will indeed distort when a subject is ether close to the lens or towards the edges of the image frame... so if you want undistorted portraits, you'll need to zoom in to 22mm to reduce the pincushion distortion for closeup images. But very close subject may result in comical distortions, giving your pets enormous noses and for people towards the edge of frame, you'll end up with stretched faces (when shooting wide). This lens is VERY suited to architecture, cityscapes, landscapes and dramatic-look subjects such as closeups of cars. It can focus very close for "macro" subjects although it's not a true macro lens. Bokeh is limited on the lens though it does separate subject for background well if the aperture is open wide to f/4 and the subject is close to the lens.
I was able to successfully capture a wide field view of the Milky Way at night but in each picture, the ISO needed to be bumped up and the resulting images were slightly soft or "muddy" where the galactic center is located... and high ISO was needed. Of all the things this lens is useful for, the Milky Way is probably not one of them. But for sunsets and sweeping vistas it is THE lens to use. I was also easily able to stitch images together with Photoshop and the lens captures sharp and colorful hues well during Blue Hour. Long exposures of traffic in the city are also quite suited to this lens. One other thing to note is that the lens has a locking switch on the side which needs to be depressed in order to extend the lens to the operating position.
Image Quality from this lens is Excellent. This is as sharp as you'll get... and it's sharp corner-to-corner too. Even at different focal lengths. You'll have plenty of fun with dynamic angles when shooting with it and I didn't even need to select an aperture for most of these shots... I just let the camera and lens sort it out for me. These pictures were all shot as JPEG images rather than RAW. Those who shoot RAW will possibly get even more mileage from this lens than I did. Diffraction spikes from bright light sources are very appealing with this lens.
Some people might be confused because Canon have release TWO lenses for the EOS-M cameras with a 22mm focal length. This one (EF-M 11-22mm f/4-5.6 IS STM) has a limited zoom and is sharper for landscapes and has stronger contrast than the EF-M 22mm f/2 STM lens. But the EF-M 22mm f/2 STM lens is a prime lens with much wider aperture (f/2) and offers a much shallower depth of field. The 22mm f/2 is also better suited for astrophotography.
I highly recommend this lens.
Easy to use, Compact, Build quality
Would you recommend this product to a friend? Yes