Every Canon EF Lens: Read the Reviews, See the Specification & Check the Price
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Overview

One of Canon's more basic white lenses dates from 1993. Excellent optical quality and fairly light weight. The lack of image stabilisation does limit its use hand held somewhat.

Available from: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk | B&H | Adorama

Lens specifications

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture 400mm 1:5.6
Lens Construction 7 elements in 6 groups
Diagonal Angle of View 6° 10"
Focus Adjustment Inner focusing system with USM
Closest Focusing Distance 3.5m / 11.5 ft.
Filter Size 77mm
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight 3.5" x 10.1", 2.8 lbs. / 90.0 x 256.5mm, 1250g

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM super telephoto lens block diagram

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM super telephoto lens mtf chart

A quick guide to MTF charts (which only measure contrast and resolution. Canon's guide to their MTF charts)

Black lines reflect lens performance at widest aperture.
Blue lines show the performance at f/8

Thick lines indicate lens contrast
Thin lines indicate lens resolution

Dashed lines: Lens performance with meridional lines.
Solid lines: Lens performance with sagittal lines

Closer sagittal and meridional chart lines indicate more 'natural' out of focus areas.

Remember that MTF charts are good for comparing similar lenses, so comparing ones from the 14mm f2.8L and 300mm 2.8L won't tell you much at all, whilst comparing the EF14 2.8L with the EF14 2.8L II will show meaningful differences. Note that other manufacturers may have different ways of displaying such information that may or may not match up with the Canon figures.

Which 400mm? - a list of all versions

Canon EF 400mm
Attribute f/2.8 USM f/2.8 II USM f/2.8 IS USM f/2.8 IS II USM f/4 DO IS USM f/5.6 USM f/4 DO IS II USM
Key features
Full-frame compatible Yes
Image stabilizer No Yes No Yes
Ultrasonic Motor Yes
L-series Yes
Diffractive Optics No Yes No Yes
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 6 groups / 7 elements 12 groups /18 elements
Aperture blades 8 9 8
Closest focusing distance 4m 3m 2.7m 3.5m 3.3m
Max. magnification 0.11x 0.15x 0.17x 0.12x 0.11x
Diagonal viewing angle 6 °
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 2.8 lb / 1.25 kg 2.1 kg
Maximum diameter 6.57" / 167mm 6.41" / 163mm 5.03" / 128mm 3.54" / 90mm/ 5.04" /128mm
Length 13.70" / 348mm 13.74" / 349mm 13.50" / 343mm 9.16" / 232.7mm 10.09" / 256.5mm 9.16" / 232.7mm
Filter diameter 48mm 52mm drop-in filter 77mm 53mm drop-in
Accessories
Lens hood ET-161B II   ET-155 ET-155 (WII) ET-120 Built-in
Case     400 400C 400B  
Retail information
Release date April 1991 March 1996 September 1999 August 2011 December 2001 May 1993 September 2014

EF 400mm f/5.6L USM reviews and articles

Written a review? Contact us and we'll add it to the list.

Sample images

None available

Product launch

No information available on the 1993 launch of this lens.

Used Canon Lenses
• UK: MPB
• USA: B&H | Adorama
Every Canon EF Lens: Read the Reviews, See the Specification & Check the Price
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