Canon Adds Two New RF Lenses to Its Full-Frame Mirrorless System

The RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM and the 50mm F1.8 STM are completely redesigned and available now. 

Canon announced it has revamped two popular EF lenses for its full-frame mirrorless RF system. The new RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM and 50mm F1.8 STM feature refreshed lens elements that expect to pair exceptionally well with the latest R5, R6, and original EOS R. 

RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM 

  • 16 lens elements in 11 groups
  • Optical Image Stabilizer
  • Three stabilizer modes
  • Customizable control ring
  • L-Series dust and weather-resistant build with a fluorine coating
  • Minimum focusing distance of 1.97 feet and a maximum magnification of 0.28x

The RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM still lens is Canon's shortest and lightest 70-200mm F4 zoom lens to date. According to Canon, it's approximately 32% shorter and 11% lighter than the EF version, which is great to hear, especially if you shoot wildlife in remote locations. Any reduction in weight makes traveling long distances that much easier. 

Canon has added four UD lenses to reduce chromatic aberration and its Air Sphere Coating (ASC) to minimize lens flare and ghosting. Users will also benefit from improved image stabilization and should expect 5 stops of camera shake correction at 200mm.

Additionally, when paired with the R5 or R6, the combined in-body image stabilization and optical stabilization will offer 7 stops of correction at 200mm. 

Autofocus is controlled by two Nano USM motors that should be quiet enough for video shooters. It also uses a floating focus control to drive the lens group, which effectively reduces breathing and boosts AF performance.

The RF 70-200mm F4 L IS USM is priced at $1,599. If you're looking for a zoom with more speed, Canon does offer the RF 70-200mm F2.8 L IS USM for $2,699. 

RF 50mm F1.8 STM 

  • Six lens elements in five groups
  • 12-pin communication system
  • Minimum focusing distance of 0.98ft and a maximum magnification of 0.25x

A compact 50mm prime lens is a must for video and still shooters. The EF 50mm F1.8 STM was popular due to its low price point, and the RF version continues the tradition for mirrorless cameras. 

Optically, it's comprised of 6 elements in 5 groups, including one PMo aspherical element to reduce chromatic aberration and retain edge-to-edge sharpness. Canon has also added a Super Spectra Coating (SSC) to reduce ghosting and flare. The lens barrel features an AF/MF autofocus switch, and for those with the R5, you can expect up to 7 stops of shake correction when the in-body image stabilization is turned on.

Canon has priced the RF 50mm F1.8 STM at $199.      

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2 Comments

Actually, on the RF Nifty Fifty, it looks like what the switch does is change the function of the front ring from being a "manual" focus (by wire) control to being the standard RF control ring function. Does anyone know if this also de-clicks/clicks the ring?

November 6, 2020 at 6:12AM

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I like how the focus ring can be used in alternative ways on these two lenses. Seems like a great idea for those of us that mainly use autofocus on our cameras. My only question is will it still require a button push to activate the control ring once it has been set?

November 7, 2020 at 11:50AM

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Nick Straub
Wedding Photographer/Videographer
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