Canon Four New RF Lenses and Focal Length Extenders Announced

July 9th, 2020
Canon Four New RF Lenses and Focal Length Extenders Announced

Next to the launch of the Canon EOS R5 and EOS R6, Canon also introduced four new RF lenses and two RF extenders. Three of the new lenses are telephoto ones, including the RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM, the RF 600mm F/11 IS STM, and the RF 800mm F/11 IS STM. With the EXTENDER RF 1.4x and 2x, you can reach up to 1200mm (RF 600mm F/11 IS STM) and 1600mm (RF 800mm F11 IS STM). If telephoto lenses are not your thing, don’t worry. If you like to shoot portraits and macro, Canon also introduced the RF 85mm F/2 MACRO IS STM lens. Let’s take a closer look at all these new lenses from Canon!

New Canon RF lenses and focal length extenders announced. Source: Canon

Canon RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM – Compact Telephoto Zoom

First, let’s talk about the Canon RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM telephoto zoom lens. This lens is designed to capture sport, wildlife, and events at a distance. While the aperture is not constant through the entire zoom range – from F/4.5 at 100mm to F/7.1 at 500mm – it should be more than enough for most situations. Indeed, telephoto lenses like this are not made to shoot in low-light conditions but in bright daylight.

The lens design of the RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM includes one Super UD lens and six UD lenses. These lenses should help reduce chromatic aberration and ghosting/flare across the entire zoom range. The minimum focus distance is 0.9m. The lens is weather-sealed so that you can use it in all conditions.

Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1 lens. Source: Canon

This telephoto lens includes Canon’s Dual Nano USM AF motor technology for high-speed, quiet, and accurate autofocus performances in either still and video mode.

The Canon RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM also features built-in image stabilization up to 5- stops. If you combine it with the latest sensor-stabilization of the EOS R5 and EOS R6, you can get 6-stops image stabilization. Like all RF lenses, the RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM features a programmable Lens Control Ring on the barrel. This button allows you to change your settings without taking your eye off the viewfinder.

Finally, you can adjust the torque zoom ring and make it tighter or looser depending on your needs.

Canon RF 600mm F/11 IS STM and RF 800mm F/11 IS STM Super-telephoto Lenses

For enthusiast photographers and filmmakers, Canon introduced the RF RF 600mm F/11 IS STM, and RF 800mm F/11 IS STM. These lenses are not part of the L lineup, so they are not weather-sealed.

Canon RF 600mm f/11 lens. Source: Canon

The RF 600mm F/11 IS STM, and RF 800mm F/11 IS STM features a retractable barrel structure. It means that the lenses extend when used and easily retracts to take less space in your camera bag.

The design of these lenses reminds me of the pump zoom era, where you push/pull the front of the lens to zoom rather than twisting the zoom ring.

Both lenses have an F/11 aperture, which is not the brightest out there. However, as I already mentioned previously, they are made to shoot in daylight situations.

Canon RF 800mm f/11 lens. Source: Canon

The RF 600mm and RF 800mm have a built-in Optical Image Stabilizer and an STM motor for quiet and smooth focusing performances. Also, they support Dual Pixel CMOS AF when paired with a Canon EOS R System mirrorless camera. Like every RF lens, the Lens Control Ring on both glasses allows direct and fast control over Tv/exposure compensation/ISO/AF operation settings.

Canon RF 85mm F/2 MACRO IS STM – Portrait Lens on a Budget

Last but not least, Canon introduced the Canon RF 85mm F/2 MACRO IS STM lens. If you’re looking for a more affordable option to the incredible RF 85mm F/1.2L USM giant piece of glass, this RF 85mm F/2 MACRO IS STM might be the lens you’ve been waiting for. Indeed, even at F/2, this 85mm combined with a full-frame sensor provides shallow depth of field.

Canon RF 85mm f/2 Macro lens. Source: Canon

The RF 85mm F/2 MACRO IS STM offers 5-stop Image Stabilization (or 8-stops when using the EOS R5/EOS R6), something that its big brother the RF 85mm F/1.2L USM doesn’t have. In terms of macro shooting capabilities, it has a 1:2 ratio, which should be enough for most situations.

Canon EXTENDER RF 1.4x and 2x

The Canon EXTENDER iRF 1.4x and 2x are compatible with several RF lenses, including the new RF 600/800mm IS STM. The RF 100 500mm F/4.5- 7.1 L IS USM is also compatible; still, the zoom range is limited to 300mm to 500mm to prevent the lens’ rear elements from hitting those of the extender.

Both Canon EXTENDER RF 1.4x and 2x uses high-refraction, low-dispersion glass to control the curvature of field and chromatic aberration of magnification. Also, there is a unique lens coating and a three-layer combined lens to reduce ghosting. Finally, a heat shield coating prevents performance deterioration in high temperatures shooting conditions.

Canon focal extenders. Source: Canon

If you use the extender with compatible L-series RF lenses, you’ll still benefit from weather sealing. Further enabling superior optical excellence, the extenders offer weather sealing when used with a compatible L-series RF lens.

Price and Availability

All the lenses and extenders can be pre-ordered now. The Canon RF 100-500mm F/4.5-7.1L IS USM retails for $2,699. The Canon RF 600mm F11 IS STM costs $699 and the RF 800mm F11 IS STM retails for $899. The 85mm f/2 Macro IS STM lens retails for $599. Finally, both extenders will cost you $499 for the 1.4x model, and $599 for the 2.0x one. Shipping should start soon.

What do you think about all these new Canon RF lenses? What lens are you waiting to add in your kit? Do you often shoot with extenders? Let us know in the comments below!

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Eugenia L
MemberJuly 10th, 2020

The 600/800mm lenses are a game changer for wild life (particularly bird) photography. The F/11 is not a problem in day situations. These lenses are much smaller and way, way lighter than the big guns. On top of that, because of the IBIS/IS, you don’t have to have a heavy tripod and a gimbal (that most bird photographers have to carry around when hiking). This allows to shed away more than half the weight of previous setups, while allows people to hike further and in more difficult terrains to get a good shot.

Some bird photographers expected them to cost $2000 each, and still wanted them. Now that they learned that these cost $1600 for both of them, I see many of them jumping on the R bandwagon both feet.

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