Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM review

If you’re after an own-brand APS-C format Canon prime lens, the Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 is the only option

Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8
(Image: © Future)

Digital Camera World Verdict

You won’t get a lens quite like this anywhere else – an own-brand APS-C lens for Canon. And, happily, it’s a very solid one. The Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM is a pancake lens that’s super lightweight, providing a useful equivalent focal length of about 38mm, and it pairs really well with Canon’s lighter APS-C DSLRs. Image quality is great, handling produces no complaints – this is a really solid lens that won’t let you down.


  • +

    Excellent image quality

  • +

    Unique among APS-C lenses

  • +

    Useful focal length


  • -

    Slower autofocus system

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The Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM is the only prime lens that Canon produces specifically for APS-C format DSLRs. You could also use a full-frame compatible 24mm lens, but this dinky optic has a lot going for it. As a pancake lens it’s compact and lightweight at 68x23mm and 125g. That makes it stealthy for street photography, especially when mounted on one of Canon’s smaller cameras like the 250D or 2000D.

With an effective focal length of 38.4mm in full-frame terms, the lens gives a natural perspective that’s very close to that of the favoured 35mm on a full-frame camera. Autofocus comes courtesy of a gear type STM (Stepping Motor) system. Unlike the lead-screw-type STM, more often used in zoom lenses, gear wheels are used to drive focusing. While this makes the system slightly slower and more audible, rather than it being almost silent in operation, this is a trade-off for the fact that the autofocus assembly is smaller, enabling the lens to be more compact. The inner barrel of the lens extends when focusing to shorter distances, but doesn’t rotate.

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Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 

His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 

In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.