LensRentals Bust Open The Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II Teardown, Naming it “Best Built Lens Ever?”

Feb 15, 2015

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

LensRentals Bust Open The Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II Teardown, Naming it “Best Built Lens Ever?”

Feb 15, 2015

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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Lenses come and go and as we move on we move higher up the lens latter, but according to the Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II teardown post from LensRentals, Roger Cicala is so happy with the build of this lens that it may very well earn the “Best Built Lens Ever” title.

Of course, LensRentals have to fix their own lenses after coming back and having gone through abuse, so Roger is both experienced and equipped to open a $2,200 lens, I would not try this at home.

Roger goes through taking the lens apart step by step starting with the tripod foot and ending with the optical elements. Here are some f the thoughts that will ease you into shelling out the extra $500 from the previous version:

[the large screws that mount the ring to the barrel are] big screws with washers around them, double the size of the screws we usually see assigned to this kind of task

… eight large screws (four to six is what we would have expected) holding the rear barrel in place

the lower helicoids – there are six channels, of which two are visible (one marked with the lower red arrow). Most lenses have three channels and collars. That’s a huge amount of increased stability when the barrel extends away from the lens

Here is a close-up of the thick brass sliders that are under the screws. They keep the barrel straight when it zooms, which is critical for keeping the optics in line. Most zoom lenses just have plastic guides, not brass, and not nearly this robust

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My guess is that Canon is expecting major abuse on this lens by event and nature photographers and simply want to save the hassle of repeating repairs.

[for the full breakdown, head over to the LensRentals blog, thanks for the heads up Oded]

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Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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9 responses to “LensRentals Bust Open The Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II Teardown, Naming it “Best Built Lens Ever?””

  1. Martin Pot Avatar
    Martin Pot

    The first link in the article isn’t to the tear-down post, even though the link text indicates it is.

    Use the link in the very last line of the post to get to the tear-down post on the lensrentals website.

    1. udi tirosh Avatar
      udi tirosh

      There are two links at the top, one for the lens and one for the post.

      1. Martin Pot Avatar
        Martin Pot

        @Udi: but the text of the first link is “Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II teardown post”, which is mis-leading, as it would appear to be linking to the tear-down blog post, when it is actually linking to the product page instead.

        1. udi tirosh Avatar
          udi tirosh

          Martin, ‘tear down post’ links to the post, the name of the lens links to the lens

          1. Martin Pot Avatar
            Martin Pot

            Sorry – my mistake – I saw the entire text “Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II teardown post” as being a single link, and didn’t realise it was two separate links as the CSS you’re using for links doesn’t make it obvious.

        2. Rob Avatar
          Rob

          @Martin. There are two links 1-Canon 100-400 IS L Mk II, 2- teardown post. There is simply nothing to separate them.

  2. Louis Fitze Avatar
    Louis Fitze

    Solid lens!

  3. Rob Avatar
    Rob

    “…and simply want to save the hustle of repeating repairs.” I assume you meant hassle :)

    1. udi tirosh Avatar
      udi tirosh

      I sure did :) thanks!