Hands on with the Canon RF 50mm f/1.8 STM & RF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM Lenses First look at Canon two upcoming new RF lenses

Earlier today Canon introduced two new compact RF lenses, the RF 50mm f/1.8 STM and the RF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM. Canon is extending its options in the RF mount line and with these lenses also trying to appeal to photographers who can’t afford or don’t need the faster and heavier f/2.8 and f/1.2 versions of these lenses.

Let’s start with the new “nifty fifty” which we suspect will be a very popular RF lens. This tiny new fast prime is only 160 grams and 41mm long (very similar to the EF version) it includes a new stepping motor and has 6 elements in 5 groups (including a single aspherical element), it has a single ring and an AF/MF switch and its close focus distance is only 0.3 meters.

The all-new Canon RF 50mm f/1.8 STM nifty fifty RF style

The all new Canon RF 50mm f/1.8 STM nifty fifty RF style

The new Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS II USM lens is somewhat of a different story, this is a very advanced and compact lens (although it does extend) which is about 32% shorter than the EF version and 11% lighter (119mm long when closed down and 695g), with the L series, build quality and quite a few advanced features including

The lens has 16 elements including 4 UD ones in 11 groups and 9 aperture blades with 77mm filter thread Air Sphere coating for reduced ghosting and flare, and a 5 stop optical image stabilizer (or up to 7.5 stops with the R5/R6 cameras). The min focusing distance is 0.6m and it includes two fast and silent nano USM motors.

The lens has a lock for travel and it does extend and has no collar. On the plus side, Canon promises that the lens will be sharper than the EF version (which is a very decent lens on its own) and it does have quite a few options (including several switches and the new control ring (which all RF lenses now have).

Smaller, lighter, and sharper at a premium – the all-new Canon RF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM

As for pricing, the RF 50mm f/1.8 STM is certainly a very affordable option for the RF line selling for $200 (you will need to buy the hood separately though) while the RF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM is actually quite a bit more expensive than the EF version selling for $1600 both starting from December 2020.

On the web, we already have several videos showcasing the new lenses (for the most part these are Canon videos or Canon partner/ambassador videos and still not independent reviews which we suspect will come later one). B&H has the video above and you can check out Adorama’s video and Wex Photo Video below.

Adorama on the RF 50mm f/1.8 STM and the RF 70-200mm f/4 IS USM lenses

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Wex Photo Video talking a look at the new lenses

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If you don’t want to miss any new photography product announcements, hands-on and reviews be sure to check out our product photography section.

Iddo Genuth
Iddo Genuth is the founder and chief editor of LensVid.com. He has been a technology reporter working for international publications since the late 1990's and covering photography since 2009. Iddo is also a co-founder of a production company specializing in commercial food and product visual content.

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