Filter Adapter for TS-E 17mm Lens

The Canon TS-E 17mm lens, introduced in 2009, has proven itself to be a magnificent wide-angle optic, with stellar corner-to-corner performance. However, from the perspective of a landscape photographer, it has one shortcoming: a protruding bulbous front element that does not admit filters.

A German photographer recently came up with a solution that uses the lens’ cap itself to put together a filter adapter ring to match a Lee filter holder. The idea was immediately embraced by American photographers who cobbled together their own jigs and reported their fabrication details on the Fred Miranda Forums.

Since working with my hands is not my strong suit, I decided to outsource the job. My friend Thomas Pindelski recommended S.K. Grimes, a machine shop in Rhode Island that specializes in photography-related work. The turnaround time was 2 months and the cost $85 plus shipping. The quality of the work is first-rate.

Bulbous front element of TS-E 17L lens

Protruding bulbous front element of TS-E 17L lens
5D Mark III, 24-105L

Filter adapter for TS-E 17L lens

Filter adapter for TS-E 17L lens with Lee holder
5D Mark III, 24-105L

Profile view

Profile view
5D Mark III, 24-105L

Filter adapter ring - fabrication by S.K. Grimes shop

Filter adapter ring mated to lens cap - fabrication by S.K. Grimes machine shop
5D Mark III, 24-105L

  • […] This time I tried to work around the problem by placing a Singh-Ray 2-stop reverse grad filter ahead of the lens to hold back the brightest band within the frame. The results were much better, thanks in no small measure to the fantastic Canon Tilt-Shift 24mm f/3.5 II lens, which, unlike its optical peer TS-E 17L, admits filter holders. (Update: for a workaround see this.) […]ReplyCancel

  • Max - September 27, 2012 - 6:14 am

    Can you tell me if there is any reduction in the field of view caused by the custom filter ring extending forward. It looks as if there is going to be some degree of crop.

    Many Thanks,


  • Sanjeev - June 11, 2012 - 1:27 am

    Eye candy !!!ReplyCancel

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