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Canon EF 50mm f/2.5 Compact Macro

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
71 190188 Jun 18, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
96% of reviewers $223.53
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.14
9.57
9.2
ef_50_25c_1_

Specifications:
A superior-performance lens offering excellent optics and focusing from infinity down to one-half life size (0.5x). Its nine-element design features a floating optical system, which ensures top-notch performance even at close focusing distances. Light and compact, it functions beautifully as a general-purpose normal lens. The optional accessory Life Size Converter EF enables focusing down to life size (1:1), and actually increases working distance - very desireable in close-up shooting.


 


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RabidCow
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Registered: Oct 26, 2003
Location: Canada
Posts: 6
Review Date: Oct 26, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $569.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fabulous sharpness and contrast
Cons:
none so far

I purchased this lens as a first add on to my Canon 300d. At first I was a little disappointed in the chromatic abberations on things like parking lot halogen lights etc, but after trying a few shots stopped down to f5.6 I am totally thrilled! The lens must be held very still (use a tripod or other steadying device) to allow its' truly great qualities to show. The approx 80mm effective length on my 300D makes it an indispensable addition to my camera bag. Since the working distance is greater than with a film camera, it is just about perfect for portraits, macro and scenic photography. It has not left my camera body since I purchased it Smile

Oct 26, 2003
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Gochugogi
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Registered: Jun 25, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 9598
Review Date: Jul 12, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $175.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Ultra sharp, even sharp wide open; small and inexpensive
Cons:
Needs the converter for 1:1 thereby becoming a 70mm optic

This lens is optimized for macro photography and, thus, is able to focus as close as 23 cm (9 inches) and create 1/2 life size (1:2) images. With the Life Size Converter EF it's capable of life size (1:1) images. It looks similar to the EF 50 1.8, but is more beefy at 63 mm L and 280 g. It has a 6-blade diaphragm instead of the 5-blade version common to most of the old AFD prime lenses. The front element does not rotate, but the lens changes in length when focusing. Surprisingly, AF is very peppy and is only slightly slower than the EF 50 1.4 USM. Like the EF 50 1.8, this lens has 52 mm filter threads. The manual focusing ring is smooth turning, a bit loose, but more useable for manual focus than the EF 50 1.4 USM or the EF 50 1.8. Unfortunately, there are DOF markings for F16 and 32 only. Finally, this lens may be stopped down to F32 for maximum depth of field, verus F22 or F16 for most 50 mm optics.

Its nine-element design is one of the most flare resistant I have encountered, better than even the EF 50 1.4 USM and EF 50 1.8. Moreover, it is supremely well corrected for distortion and is sharp and contrasty from edge to edge from macro to infinity (Photodo 4.4 MTF). This lens is ideal for photographing coins, documents and other inanimate objects as there is virually no distortion in the macro or normal ranges. However, this is not an ideal lens for little critters and flash as the working range is very short (you could use off-camera flash or reflectors).

There is no official Canon hood for this lens, probably because of the extreme front element extension required for 1:2 or 1:1 reproduction. However, the front element is so far recessed that this is nearly a moot point. If you're not using the macro range, use of a screw-in generic hood is a good idea. The filter threads are 52 mm, making filters and hoods affordable.

Nature photographer John Shaw recommends that if you're going to buy a 50 mm lens, get a macro version. Subsequently, you'll get small F-stops and the ability to focus close if you need it. This lens is about $300 new. I bought a used one in mint condition for $175.


Jul 12, 2003
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Ralph Wagner
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Registered: Feb 10, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 527
Review Date: Jul 2, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $225.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp & superb contrast. Color is right on.
Cons:
Slow AF, but this isn't what you buy it for.

Super sharp 50mm lens.Excellent carry lens if you don't need fast AF. Along w/the 1:1 teleconverter this makes for a very compact, easy to carry macro set up.

Jul 2, 2003
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dmpimaging
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Registered: Mar 6, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 70
Review Date: Jun 2, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Cost, small size, good optics, sharp
Cons:
Working distance is too close.

I have both the 50mm and the 100 mm macros lenses from canon. Although I use both lenses, the 100 mm sees more use outdoors due to the increased working distance. However for setups where lights are attached to the camera, the 50mm makes a wonderful setup.

Jun 2, 2003
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Theresa Z.
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Registered: Mar 19, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 2828
Review Date: Apr 22, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp lens, good for up close shots of stationary objects. Reasonable contrast.
Cons:
Too close for comfort on shots of non-stationary objects...

If I were to do it again, I'd buy a longer macro lens for more working distance.

Apr 22, 2003
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dadas115
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Registered: Nov 25, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 1502
Review Date: Apr 22, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $180.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Small, light, inexpensive, sharp
Cons:
A bit flimsy build (what do you expect for $230 new?), slow AF (big deal, itís a macro lens!)

This is one of my favorite lenses of all time. I used it a lot on my 1D and like it even more on my 10D. A lot of people say it doesn't give enough working distance for nature-type shots but I have not really found this to be the case. This lens is so light and small that I usually always have it with me. For this reason it sees a lot more action than my other macro lenses. This lens is VERY sharp and works well with extension tubes. I think it is a great value and don't hesitate to recommend it.

Apr 22, 2003
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John MacLean
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Registered: Jan 11, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 391
Review Date: Mar 29, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: tack sharp
Cons:
too close for macro usage

I sold this for lack of use (I'm not a "normal" lens kind of shooter), but it's a very highly under rated lens. This true macro designed lens will stomp the more expensive and popular 50mm f1.4 design. From my long ago, past experience of working in over 4 camera stores, people always want the fastest lens they can get. Don't ask me why, I guess it's aperture envy! Do yourself a favor and skip the speed for sharpness you can feel as well as see! Plus the recessed front element gives you a full time lens shade for flare free pix.

Mar 29, 2003
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Canon EF 50mm f/2.5 Compact Macro

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
71 190188 Jun 18, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
96% of reviewers $223.53
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.14
9.57
9.2
ef_50_25c_1_


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