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Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

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Reviews Views Date of last review
350 558411 May 29, 2016
Recommended By Average Price
94% of reviewers $128.42
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
5.87
9.56
8.6
ef50mmf_18_1_

Specifications:
This is the lightest EF lens of all at a mere 4.6 oz. (130g). Compact and high-performance, standard lens. Its Gaussian optics provide sharp delineation from near to far focusing distances. The color balance is excellent for a standard lens.


 


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amcomis
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Registered: Jun 16, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 499
Review Date: Jun 21, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $65.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: very sharp, even (mostly) wide open, very light, great color/contrast
Cons:
plastic feel, plastic mount, no USM, loud, horrible manual focus ring, extending front element, high min focusing distance, 5 blade awkward aperature, no hood

Great lens, a great spare or great for low light stuff. DOF is fun to play with. Can be combined with extension tubes for a great macro lens.

Jun 21, 2005
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klam
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Registered: May 19, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 1688
Review Date: Jun 10, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap price, fast aperture, low distortion, crisp photos, light-weight, small.
Cons:
Plastic and cheap construction, five blade aperture, noisy focus action, no built-in distance scale (though there is a nice DIY for that).

In all honesty, there weren't many reasons for me to go out and get this lens. I have several lenses that cover the 50mm length, and one lens that is almost as fast.

Despite the reviews of cheap build quality, fixed focal length, noisy focus action, this lens still found a way into my camera bag, and apparently many other camera bags like mine!

Optically it is a fine lens. Photos taken with it are crisp and relatively distortion free. The fast aperture is tremendous fun, allowing you to play around with low available light and shallow DOF. For optimal sharpness, you should stop down a bit. I find F/2.8-4.0 good enough if you have limited light.

Build quality as others have said is not spectacular. It is on par with similar plastic mount EF lenses, such as kit lenses. Focusing is noisy too.

However, the plastic build also lends itself to one of its key advantages. This lens is lightweight. Combined with its small size, it's a pleasure to carry around in your bag or on your camera. Since the lens is also relatively cheap, it makes a great guinea pig lens for those situations where you wouldn't want to risk using a more expensive lens.

There is a simple AF/MF toggle switch, and thin manual focus ring for those times you need it.

The most likely comparisons to this lens will be the Mark I version of the EF 50mm F/1.8 and the EF 50mm F/1.4.

I initially scouted out Mark I versions of this lens on eBay, but found the bid prices on those to go maybe double the price of the Mark II version. Reports are that the optics are the same and that the primary differences are more solid construction with metal mount and distance scale. The distance scale can be overcome with a cheap DIY project found here http://spyderman.ekodapo.sk/?s=t&p=13. I made my own distance scale and adhered it to my lens, and it works all the same.

The EF 50mm F/1.4 is slightly nicer optically, solidly built, with a six blade aperture helping bokeh. It costs almost five times more though. If money is no object than by all means go for that.


Jun 10, 2005
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Matt Lomeli
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Registered: May 21, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1177
Review Date: Jun 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $76.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap and crisp
Cons:

A lot has been said on these reviews I do agree with, but some...I don't. This lens, for the price, is a hands down no-brainer to own. It took me reading all these reviews to finally get it and in no way am I disappointed. Plastic mount - blah, blah, blah...if you plan on dropping your camera or thowing it downfield 30 yards, then you may have problems (more than your camera can help you with). Once you see the results, you quickly forget about the mount. It also equals less weight. This along with my camera makes for easy portability.









That space was wasted just for you...the reader. In that time it would have taken to read that amount of words, you could have just bought this lens! Go.....NOW!


Jun 8, 2005
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Dajon
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Registered: Jun 8, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 6
Review Date: Jun 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: low cost -sharp optics -and light as a feather!
Cons:
a metal mount would be nice

I switched from nikon and while I was waiting for my Canon lenses to show up a friend let me borrow this lens for a few weeks. It was the 1st canon EF lens ive ever used and at 1st i found it too light and "plasticy" feeling -but once i got my results back -wow sharp lens! -especially closed down a few stops. i got uesd to the light and a plastic feeling and i begun to admire it for its ease of use and size. I highly recommend this lens if you are starting out -much better than the cheap standard zooms you see on camera kits! Or if you are serious this lens fits in your pocket and becomes a great little back up. I would own one but i needed a macro so i got the ef50f2.5

Jun 8, 2005
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joezasada
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Registered: Feb 24, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 3062
Review Date: May 30, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $150.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Superb image quality, low cost
Cons:
There are indeed better lenses but you'de be hard pressed to find a better lens for the mere pocket change you spend on it

This should be the first or second lens anyone buys for their Canon kit. You can't beat the image quality for the price.

May 30, 2005
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SheepDog
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Registered: May 7, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 18, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: PRICE. SHARPNESS (above f/5.6). Lightest lens you can ever find.
Cons:
Poor construction, poor color saturation, toy-like

Cheapest prime lens out there. Whether due to curiousity or whatever, you should pick up a copy. It doesn't hurt you anything to try it out. You will be amazed by its sharpness (except for wide open). Do not hope for more though. Focusing is noisy and slow. The lens likes to hunt too. Color balance is on the low end. I play around with photoshop a lot, so color has not been a major issue. Sharpness counts for the most part of my shooting.

Grab a copy today and have fun with this little razor blade. It's sharp!


May 18, 2005
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capitalK
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Registered: Apr 25, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 1044
Review Date: May 17, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, light and cheap!
Cons:
You get what you pay for, plastic mount and awful manual focus ring

I can't say anything about this lens that hasn't already been said, but I'll do it anyway!

This lens is on my 300D 85% of the time. It weighs nothing, is sharp as a tack (especially at f/4 and above) and is totally usable at f/1.8, though in low-light I tend to shoot at around f/2.2. This lens has gotten me some good shots at concerts and indoor sports events while my friends who were shooting the same events got nothing usable.

If I was selling Canon SLR's I would recommend that everybody who leaves the store leaves with one of these lenses, amateur or pro (though a pro my go with the 50mm f/1.4).


May 17, 2005
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PlaneGuy
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Registered: Sep 27, 2004
Location: Australia
Posts: 201
Review Date: May 12, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $80.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Size, weight, image quality
Cons:
Autofocus speed and reliability

The ubiquitous 50/1.8. Whilst I really like the lens, I don't think it warrants the comments that everyone should have one. Its nice and provides great image quality for the price - heck, oits great image quality for three times the price - but most people won't be able to use one of these really well - me included.

The focal length is a bit long for me on a 1.6x crop camera, and for typically "short tele" shooting the AF is too poor, and the MF is really awkward and hard.

However, I still carry this lens in my bag. It is good for those dark indoors details shots - too long for people shooting inside - and coupled with a set of extenion tubes, makes a superb intro to macro. My best few shots have been taken with that combo.

So overall I like it, but it is a more specialised lens than people consider it to be


May 12, 2005
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wood1271
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Registered: May 12, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 12, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $69.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent Pictures. Very Light. Great Price
Cons:
Plastc Mount.

Picture quality is awesome. Way better than the kit lens that came on my camera. I hope to continue to upgrade my lenses and if they all do this well I will be very happy.

May 12, 2005
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Navyblue
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Registered: Mar 27, 2005
Location: Singapore
Posts: 1906
Review Date: May 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap and light.
Cons:
Soft below f4.

Yes it's sharp and yes it's fast, but the problem is both of them don't come together.

It is a fast lens. I was thinking that I could use it for low available light photography at its large f1.8 aperture, but I am wrong, images were very soft (at least for my copy). May be at f2.8 it is good for portrait for being not too sharp. It is a sharp lens when used f5.6 and above though, but it is not "fast" any more.

Build wise, it isn't most solid of all lenses for being an all plastic body with pathetic focusing ring, but I have absolutely no problem with it. In fact I like it being light and petite.

I have no complaint on its focusing, definitely not slow and too noisy.


May 8, 2005
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condyk
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Registered: Mar 14, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 300
Review Date: May 5, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $120.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Size great for carrying in a coat pocket if you want another lens on your camera, amazing quality for price, excellent lightweight city carry around, rudimentary Macro.
Cons:
Of course, it's plasticy, but get over it! Nothing else. I love this little lens.



May 5, 2005
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cezars
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Registered: Mar 1, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 137
Review Date: May 1, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $70.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: price, weight, size, f/1.8
Cons:
build quality

This is in my opinion the best value Canon prime lens. For about $70, you get very professional results that will really impress people (especially at f/1.8)

It makes an excellent portrait lens and the optics quality is simply perfect.

Here's a sample portrait I took with this lens: http://www.deviantart.com/view/17017616/

I admit that I don't use it very often (because I'm not a portrait photographer) but for the few times I had to take a portrait, it was more than worth using this lens.

If don't have one, please buy it; you won't regret it. I wish all lens were at this price Smile


May 1, 2005
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IraGraham
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Registered: Oct 30, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 622
Review Date: Apr 27, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Great price, Sharp A+++ optics, light on camera, fast focus even without it being ultrasonic.
Cons:
I guess to a small extent bokeh though it really is hardly an issue. I really don't see much difference between it and it's faster brother. Only another photographer would care.

Great lens, you are a fool not to own one.

Apr 27, 2005
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fishrule
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Registered: Dec 13, 2004
Location: Jamaica
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 16, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 4 

 
Pros: Cheap...
Cons:
Not much else

I got this lens in the hopes of getting a good prime for my money. I was dead wrong. This lens is SOFT. There is no other way to say it. Its about as sharp as my EF-S 18-55 lens by F8, but softer at wider apetures. Get a kit zoom instead of this lens, its more versatile and this lens is uselessly soft at it's wide open apetures. As for me, I got a Nikon F mount to EOS adaptor and now just use my 50mm F1.2 Nikkor on my 300D instead of this pile of junk.

Apr 16, 2005
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luciora
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Registered: Apr 11, 2005
Location: Germany
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 11, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: cheap, acceptable bokeh, f1.8, small and light
Cons:
plastic everywhere (i wonder what the 'glass' is really made of), awkward manual focus ring, soft from 1.8 to 4, no USM

Well, it's the cheapest EF 1.8 lens, so this is an excuse for its build quality ... almost everything is made of plastic and i'm not talking about quality plastic (such as LEGO for example), but light and feels-as-if-it-breaks-by-looking-at-it plastic. even the mount!

what's really bad is this lens' softness at f1.8. of course it just can't be as sharp as an L lens or the 1.4, but what's 1.8 good for when you can't use it? my tamron 28-75 f2.8 is sharper at 2.8 as this plastic thingy here, so there's really little reason to use it except for low light high ISO shots. but hey, it's extremely light and small so it's quite useful as an 'emergency lens' for available light photography.

by the way, the AF/MF switch is really hard to use, i always expect it to fly off when pushing it. the manual focussing ring isn't that much better ... oh, and of course the lens extends quite a bit - considering the plasticy feeling i always manually move it back into the barrel in MF mode ... to stop it from breaking apart. Smile

buy it if you can't afford the f1.4 or a good L/EX. it's quite nice to use for portraits and available light.


Apr 11, 2005
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Bobbo Clark
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Registered: Jan 7, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 341
Review Date: Apr 7, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $65.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Cheap as dirt, Sharp
Cons:
built like a kid's toy, fills with dust

Well, if it wern't for my lens being filled with dust (spent too much time in a school construction project and travelling all over hell), this lens would be freaking awesome. I think i need to replce it soon, but it will probably be with another one of these. it's cheaper than if i were to spend my money on an old pre-1990 mark I for more than twice the price that could have just as much dust, if not worse.

yes, build sucks, but when i bought it, i couldn't afford enough for the hood, let alone a 50/1.4. mine is also damn sharp, even though it has enough dirt in it for an ant farm.

would i reccomend it? yup, but just remember you get what you pay for.


Apr 7, 2005
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Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
350 558411 May 29, 2016
Recommended By Average Price
94% of reviewers $128.42
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
5.87
9.56
8.6
ef50mmf_18_1_


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