Along with the R5 and R6 mirrorless cameras, Canon also announced four new lenses for its full-frame mirrorless system. The lenses are as follows: 85mm f/2 Macro IS, 600mm f/11 IS, and 800mm f/11 IS, and 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS. Canon also announced two RF teleconverters as well.
85mm f/2 Macro IS
One of the new RF lenses is an 85mm f/2 macro lens, the second macro lens released for Canon’s full-frame mirrorless system (the other being the RF 35mm f/1.8 macro).
Unfortunately, like the RF 35mm f/1.8, it only maxes out at 1:2 magnification. This is fine for larger subjects like flowers, dragonflies, or lizards, but falls short of what most macro photographers would want for smaller bugs and insects. (There’s some debate online over the definition of “macro,” but one common interpretation says that a macro lens needs to capture life-size, or 1:1, magnification before it even deserves the moniker.)
The wide f/2 aperture, however, does make this a versatile portrait lens. Most macro lenses have an f/2.8 maximum aperture instead, which isn’t quite enough for a lot of portrait shooters. Perhaps Canon was trying to thread the needle between the macro and (budget) portraiture audiences, hence the 1:2 magnification compromise.
At $600, this certainly is a reasonably priced lens, and a good substitute for portrait photographers who don’t want to spend $2200 on one of the 85mm f/1.2 RF lenses. It makes for a good all-around kit when paired with the RF 35mm f/1.8 Macro, as well as either of the RF 24-105mm lenses.
RF 600mm and 800mm f/11 IS
Of the four lenses Canon just announced, the two that garnered the most attention are both supertelephoto primes with a fixed f/11 aperture. At 600mm and 800mm, these are the longest native lenses for Canon’s full-frame mirrorless cameras. They are also surprisingly lightweight and inexpensive, at 930 grams (2.05 lbs) and $700 for the 600mm f/11, and 1260 grams (2.77 lbs) and $900 for the 800mm f/11.
Part of the light weight is due to the use of diffractive optics (DO) on both lenses, a nice addition for lenses at this price. An even more important reason for the light weight is the maximum aperture of f/11 – the smallest maximum aperture on any non-exotic lens ever released by Canon.
Both lenses do have image stabilization, but you’d be forgiven for wondering if an f/11 maximum aperture is salvageable with image stabilization in the first place. Lenses with an f/5.6 maximum aperture are already considered slow, and f/11 captures exactly one fourth as much light as that. Not to mention that you already need faster shutter speeds with supertelephotos in the first place…
It’s not that these lenses are necessarily a bad idea, and I’m encouraged to see Canon thinking outside the box rather than iterating an existing lens design. For landscape photography, I’d be interested in seeing what photographers can create at 600mm and 800mm, given that almost all landscape photos are shot in the 14-200mm range of focal lengths. Even for astrophotography, assuming you have a tracking head, these lenses could be a very interesting budget option.
Wildlife photography, though, is probably what most photographers have in mind when they see 600mm and 800mm, and that’s also where the f/11 maximum aperture is the most concerning. At f/11, you’ll easily need to bump up your ISO to 3200, 6400, and higher, before the sun even sets.
Don’t let me stop you if these lenses feel perfect for your needs, wildlife photography or otherwise. But before you get one, make sure your expected lighting conditions are bright enough – and your subjects move slowly enough – that f/11 is a viable maximum aperture for you in the first place.
- Pre-order the Canon RF 600mm f/11 IS at B&H for $700
- Pre-order the Canon RF 800mm f/11 IS at B&H for $900
RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS
The last lens Canon just announced is another supertelephoto option, this time an “L” lens selling for $2700. It’s a 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1L IS zoom, which also has a small maximum aperture, though f/7.1 is about 1.3 stops brighter than f/11.
Borrowing some DNA from the well-regarded Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6, a DSLR lens, this new 100-500mm is versatile and surprisingly lightweight. At 1365 grams (3.0 pounds), it’s lighter than the 100-400mm (1640 g / 3.6 lbs) and Nikon’s F-mount 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (1570 g / 3.5 lbs).
Of course, a 3 pound lens isn’t exactly comfortable to hold all day, and there will be plenty of photographers who are tempted by the f/11 lenses instead. It’s not an easy choice, especially considering that the 100-500mm is a significantly more expensive lens. However, if you have the budget, the wider aperture on this lens clearly does make it a more versatile choice in anything except the brightest midday sunlight.
Alongside the four lenses above, Canon also announced its first two mirrorless teleconverters: the Extender RF 1.4x and Extender RF 2x, priced at $500 and $600 respectively.
Canon has stated that the two teleconverters work with the 600mm f/11, 800mm f/11, and 100-500mm f/4.5-7.1 lenses (though only from 300mm to 500mm on the zoom). However, like all teleconverters, this does come with an aperture penalty along the way. If you’re planning to use the 2x teleconverter with either the 600mm or 800mm f/11, your maximum aperture will be f/22! Forget about using that for wildlife photography unless you’re at ISO 1600 or higher on a very bright day. Let alone getting autofocus to work well.
- Pre-order the Canon RF 1.4x Extender at B&H for $500
- Pre-order the Canon RF 2x Extender at B&H for $600
Canon announced these four new lenses and two teleconverters in the following press release:
The Secret Is Out: Canon Officially Announces The Canon EOS R5 and R6, The Company’s Most Advanced Full-Frame Mirrorless Cameras Ever
The Company is Also Announcing Four RF Lenses, Two RF Lens Extenders, and a PRO Printer
MELVILLE, NY, July 9, 2020 – With anticipation at a fever pitch, Canon U.S.A. Inc., a leader in digital imaging solutions, is excited to introduce the company’s next generation of full-frame mirrorless cameras – the EOS R5 and EOS R6. These groundbreaking cameras are the result of many years of collecting and listening to feedback from Canon users and are sure to meet the needs and demands of a variety of creators. The EOS R5 is a camera designed for professional applications featuring a new 45-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and uncropped 8K video recording up to 29.97 fps. The EOS R6 is geared towards advanced amateurs featuring a 20.1-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and 4K video recording up to 59.94 fps. The addition of the EOS R5 and the EOS R6 cameras within the EOS R series lineup further solidifies Canon’s commitment to providing the equipment needed for users to bring their content to the next level.
Canon is also introducing four RF lenses and two RF lens extenders: The Canon RF100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM, Canon RF600mm F11 IS STM, Canon RF800mm F11 IS STM, and RF85mm F2 MACRO IS STM lenses. All four new lenses were designed to meet the ever-expanding demands of the skilled creatives who capture amazing imagery using EOS R series cameras, including the new EOS R5 and EOS R6. In addition to the lenses, there are two new RF lens extenders, a 1.4x and a 2x model, allowing for users to take their compatible RF lens focal lengths even farther, and a 13-inch professional printer, the imagePROGRAF PRO-300, to bring photos to life through the power of print.
“For all of the Canon research and development team members who worked tirelessly on the production of these new products, today marks the culmination of a long journey. For those people looking for the next great tools to work with to expand their creative possibilities, the door is now wide open,” said Tatsuro “Tony” Kano, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Canon U.S.A.’s Imaging Technologies & Communications Group. “The industry has asked for new products that can push their levels of creativity to new heights, and we are confident that the EOS R5 and EOS R6, alongside the new lenses, lens extenders, and the pro printer, will fulfill those needs and more.”
Canon EOS R5 and EOS R6
Both the EOS R5 and EOS R6 cameras have the ability to capture the action of a variety of fast-moving subjects with impressive accuracy and speed. When using the mechanical shutter, each can shoot up to 12 fps and up to 20 fps when using the completely silent shutter. Both cameras are the first to be outfitted with Canon’s advanced Dual Pixel CMOS AF II which utilizes up to approximately100 percent coverage of the AF area and EOS iTR AF X incorporating AF tracking algorithms using deep learning technology and enhanced readout speed of the CMOS sensor and processing speed thanks to the DIGIC X image processor. The 1,053 automatically selected AF Zones are made even more potent by the ability to detect the human eye, face or head as well as the eye, face or body of animals such as dogs, cats and even birds[i]. Adding to the feature set is the 5-axis In-Body Image Stabilizer, having coordinated control with Optical Image Stabilizer in IS equipped RF lenses. This provides up to 8 stops[ii] of shake correction, a feature that many creators have long asked for from Canon. Both the EOS R5 and R6 cameras come with a new LP-E6NH battery with a higher capacity than the previous model.
As the new flagship model in the EOS R series lineup, the EOS R5 camera has features that pack a punch for a variety of users who create both still and video content. It has a powerful 45-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and is driven by the speedy DIGIC X image processor, giving wide dynamic range as well as boasting an ISO range of 100-51,200 that is expandable up to 102,400[iii]. In a camera full of eye-popping features, one that really stands out is the ability to record uncropped 8K RAW internal video recording up to 29.97 fps and 8K internal video recording up to 29.97 fps in 4:2:2 10-bit Canon Log (H.265)/4:2:2 10-bit HDR PQ (H.265). The camera can also record 4K internal video recording up to 119.88 fps in 4:2:2 10-bit Canon Log (H.265)/4:2:2 10-bit HDR PQ (H.265). External recording in 4K is also available up to 59.94 fps. When in DCI modes, the 8K and 4K video recording is uncropped and Dual Pixel CMOS AF II is available in all 8K and 4K recording modes. Additional features of the EOS R5 camera include:
- Dual-card slots: 1x CFexpress[iv] and 1x SD UHS-II[v]
- Built-in 0.5-inch OLED EVF with approximately 5.76 million dots and a 119.88 fps refresh rate[vi]
- 3.2-inch 2.1 million dots vari-angle LCD touch screen
- 5GHz/2.4GHz Built-in Wi-Fi®[vii] and Bluetooth[viii] Technology with the ability to utilize the image.canon application, as well as optional WFT-R10A wireless file transmitter with Ethernet support
- Enhanced operating controls such as rear-dial, multi-controller
- The ability to voice tag photos and videos
- Weather, drip and dust sealing on par with the EOS 5D series
The EOS R6 camera is well-equipped with a host of new features to push the limits of creativity for imaging enthusiasts. The combination of the EOS-1D X Mark III based 20.1-megapixel full-frame CMOS sensor and the DIGIC X image processor produces an ISO range of 100-102,400 and is expandable to 204,800. Internal video recording at 4K is capable up to 59.94 fps or 1080p up to 119.88 fps in 10 bit 4:2:2 Canon Log(H.265) or HDR PQ(H.265). The camera also features a built-in 0.5-inch OLED EVF with approximately 3.69 million dots and a 119.88 fps refresh rate[vi]. Additional features of the EOS R6 camera include:
- Dual UHS-II SD card slots
- 3-inch 1.62 million dots vari-angle LCD touch screen
- 2.4GHz Built-in Wi-Fi®[vii] and Bluetooth Technology[viii] with the ability to utilize the image.canon application
- Enhanced operating controls such as rear-dial, multi-controller
- Weather, drip and dust sealing on par with the EOS 6D series
The optional BG-R10 battery grip accessory will be available for both the EOS R5 and EOS R6 full-frame mirrorless cameras. The BG-R10 accommodates up to two batteries and is compatible with the new LP-E6NH, LP-E6N and LP-E6 batteries. The convenient BG-R10 grip accessory can also improve handling for users while capturing portrait photography.
Canon RF100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM
The Canon RF100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM is a high-performance and versatile super-telephoto zoom lens that will find its way into the bags of many photographers. The compact and lightweight lens features optical image stabilization of up to five stops* of shake correction with three different IS modes, including standard, panning and during exposure only. Two Nano USM motors are at the heart of this lens and provide users with high-speed, smooth and quiet auto focus with a minimum focusing distance of three feet. Additional features of the Canon RF100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM include:
- Rotation-Type zoom ring and torque adjustment allows for precision control and feel
- Customizable control ring that enables photographers to adjust exposure compensation, shutter speed, aperture or ISO
- 12-pin Communication System
- Canon L-Series grade dust and weather-resistant construction with a fluorine coating
- Lens hood with side window allows specialty filters to be adjusted even while Lens Hood is attached
- Compatible with the new 1.4x and 2x RF lens extenders (from 300 to 500mm focal length)
Canon RF600mm and 800mm F11 IS STM
The Canon RF600mm and RF800mm F11 IS STM lenses are the first fixed focal length super-telephoto RF lenses and are incredibly compact and lightweight. The portability of the new lenses is made even greater due to the ability for the lens barrel to retract and lock in place when the lenses are stowed away and not in use. Diffractive Optics technology helps to reduce the necessary number of lenses and greatly diminish the cost of the lenses, making them affordable for a broader group of photographers. Additional features of the Canon RF600mm and RF800mm F11 IS STM lenses include:
- Lightweight – the RF600mm weighs approximately 2.05lb and the RF800mm weighs approximately 2.78lb, respectively
- Compact size, RF600mm measures approximately 7.85inch and RF800mm with measures approximately 11.09inch when retracted, respectively
- Fixed f/11 aperture
- Optical image stabilization of five stops* for the RF600mm and four stops* for the RF800mm of Shake Correction
- Lead screw-type STM enables smooth auto focusing for still-image and video shooting
- Customizable control ring that allows photographers to adjust exposure compensation, shutter speed, aperture or ISO
- 12-pin Communication System
- Compatible with the new 1.4x and 2x RF lens extenders
Canon RF85mm F2 MACRO IS STM
The third RF85mm lens in the RF lineup, the Canon RF85mm F2 MACRO IS STM is compact and lightweight, featuring a bright f/2 aperture helping to capture images that have exceptional bokeh. The lens features a maximum magnification of 0.5x and a minimum focusing distance of 1.15 feet, providing users with macro-photography capability. Additional features of the Canon RF85mm F2 MACRO IS STM include:
- Optical Image Stabilization with up to five stops* of Shake Correction
- Hybrid IS compensates for angular and shift camera shake during macro photography
- Control Ring for Direct Setting Changes.
- 12-pin Communication System
- Nine blade Circular Aperture
RF Lens Extenders
Lens extenders have long been a practical and useful tool for a variety of photographers. That story continues with the introduction of the Extender RF 1.4x and Extender RF 2x. The new lens extenders inherit the same high image quality, precision AF and reliability, such as being drip and dustproof, of EF lens extenders. When used in combination with the newly-released compatible lenses, the capturing range can be dramatically increased, providing consumers with additional use cases for their existing RF lenses.
Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-300
Completing the lineup of professional printer options from 13 inches through 60 inches, Canon also unveiled today the new 13-inch Canon imagePROGRAF PRO-300 Inkjet Printer along with a new Premium Fine Art Rough paper. Providing an improved workflow and high-quality output within a smaller footprint compared to previous models, this new printer excels at professional printing performance. Combined with the new Premium Fine Art Rough paper that features a textured surface to express the depth of an image, the printer along with the paper and new EOS R5 or EOS R6 camera introduces a new powerhouse professional imaging trio that meets creators’ demands.
Pricing and Availability
The EOS R5 full-frame mirrorless camera is scheduled to be available at the end of July for an estimated retail price of $3899.00 for the body only and $4999.00 for the R5 and RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM lens kit**.
The EOS R6 full-frame mirrorless camera is scheduled to be available at the end of August for an estimated retail price of $2499.00 for the body only, $2.899.00 for the R6 and RF 24-105 F4-7.1 IS STM lens kit or $3,599.00 for the R6 and RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM lens kit**.
The BG-R10 battery grip accessory and WFT-R10A are both scheduled to be available at the end of July for an estimated retail price of $349.99 and $999.99**, respectively.
The RF100-500mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM lens is scheduled to be available in September 2020 for an estimated retail price of $2,699.00. The RF600mm F11 IS STM and RF800mm F11 IS STM lenses are scheduled to be available at the end of July 2020 for an estimated retail price of $699.99 and $899.99, respectively. The RF85mm F2 MACRO IS STM lens is scheduled to be available in October 2020 for an estimated retail price of $599.99 **.
The RF Extender 1.4x and 2x are scheduled to be available at the end of July for an estimated retail price of $499.99 and $599.99** each.
The imagePROGRAF PRO-300 Printer will be available later in July for a suggested retail price of $899.99. Premium Fine Art Rough paper will also be available later in July for a suggested retail price of $44.99 for Letter size, $109.99 for 13” x 19” inches and $169.99, 17” x 22” inches**.
For more information please visit, www.usa.canon.com/virtualproductlaunch.
About Canon U.S.A., Inc.
Canon U.S.A., Inc., is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions to the United States and to Latin America and the Caribbean markets. With approximately $33 billion in global revenue, its parent company, Canon Inc. (NYSE:CAJ), ranks third overall in U.S. patents granted in 2019† and was named one of Fortune Magazine’s World’s Most Admired Companies in 2020. Canon U.S.A. is dedicated to its Kyosei philosophy of social and environmental responsibility. To keep apprised of the latest news from Canon U.S.A., sign up for the Company’s RSS news feed by visiting www.usa.canon.com/rss and follow us on Twitter @CanonUSA.
# # #
† Based on weekly patent counts issued by United States Patent and Trademark Office.
** Specifications, availability and prices are subject to change without notice. Actual prices are set by individual dealers and may vary.
[i] Effectiveness varies depending on the subject. In some cases, dogs, cats or birds may not be detected, while some animals other than dogs, cats or birds may be detected
[ii] Based on CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) standards. Combined with RF 24-105mm F4 L IS USM lens at a focal distance of 105mm. IS equipped RF lenses available prior to July 9th, 2020 will require a lens firmware update to utilize coordinated IS control. Please check the Canon website for the latest firmware updates.
[iii] For still images
[iv] Type B compatible
[v] There is a disclaimer that goes with this claim: Some types of data cannot be saved on the SD memory card
[vi] Display may be grainier
[vii] Compatible with iOS® versions 9.3/10.3/11.2-11.4/12.4/13.2, Android™ smartphone and tablet versions 5.0/5.1/6.0/7.0/7.1/8.0/8.1/9.0/10. Data charges may apply with the download of the free Canon Camera Connect app. This app helps enable you to upload images to social media services. Please note that image files may contain personally identifiable information that may implicate privacy laws. Canon disclaims and has no responsibility for your use of such images. Canon does not obtain, collect or use such images or any information included in such images through this app
[viii] Compatible with select smartphone and tablet devices (Android™ version 5.0 or later and the following iOS® devices: iPhone 4s or later, iPad 3rd gen. or later, iPod Touch 5th gen. or later) equipped with Bluetooth® Version 4.1 or later and the Camera Connect App Ver. 2.5.10. This application is not guaranteed to operate on all listed devices, even if minimum requirements are met
*Based on CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) standards
I so much like the PL community. I tend to learn from the comments section just as much as from the article itself. Many knowledgeable photographers add on what the authors write and expand on the article.
For the moon f/11 might be ok, but I can’t see the f/11 lenses as being good for other astro. For a similar price, you can pick up a dedicated telescope for astrophotography. William Optics makes a 430mm f/5.9 or a 560mm f/6.9 (yes, those are real aperture numbers). I’d gladly take the wider aperture at the cost of a little focal length.
It is very nice to see some outside-the-box new lenses though.
Canon says R5 and R6 can AF down to f22. That is incredible.
I’m curious to see how the bokeh is on the 85mm. Most macro lenses aren’t ideal for portraiture not because of being “just” f/2.8 (a lens like the Leica 90 f/2.8 is renowned for portrait work, just as an example) or, as sometimes is unironically said, because they’re “too sharp/too clinical”, but because their bokeh is really mediocre if not worse than that. There are exceptions (like the latest Voigtländer 110 f/2.5) but that’s generally the deal breaker. Perhaps, since this lens is not a proper macro (no matter how often the industry has tried to decide what is and isn’t a macro lens, anything with a magnification lower than 1:1 simply doesn’t cut it) it could be better optimised in such a sense.
I don’t really see much of a point for the 600 lens (not to me, at any rate) but the 800 is a lens that I’d be very much inclined to rent. Both for some close Moon shots and for some very lazy bird photography in broad daylight (two things that will make any wildlife photographer cringe in horror, but hey, everyone has lazy days, right?).
Nice to see some different lenses though, while there’s no guarantee that they’ll sell well, a different approach and new ideas are always valuable.
600 and 800 f/11 are VIDEO lenses
I cannot see the 600 & 800 mm f/11 lenses making much sense for wildlife photography. Even an D500 with the 200-500 f/5.6 gives me a combo equivalent to 300-750 f/8.4.
My strong guess is this are in fact not photo but video lenses. Even with 4K60 the normal shutter speed is a very slow 1/120 second, so the dark aperture is practically not a problem any more. The larger field of focus is also ok, as it helps to have the whole animal in focus (at 800 f/5.6 this will not always be the case).
So for video these two lenses suddenly look kind of attractive.
That’s a very good point, these would work great for certain video applications!