Because the launch of the EOS R line in 2018, Canon has largely concentrated its attentions on high-end RF lenses. And the lens we’re taking a look at right here is prone to be one of the vital coveted RF-mount optics, partly due to its basic portrait-friendly focal size and super-wide aperture, but additionally as a result of Canon payments it as having the best optical efficiency of any autofocus-enabled 85mm lens the corporate has ever launched. Fairly a declare.

Naturally, all of this goes some method to clarify why the RF 85mm F1.2L USM is among the many costliest lenses within the RF lineup. It’s significantly pricier than the EF 85mm f1.2 L II USM, which may also be used with EOS R-series our bodies through an adapter, and should you’re glad to slum it with an F1.Four possibility you then’ll discover many cheaper choices from different producers to select from. Nonetheless, the RF 85mm ought to show a tempting possibility for early EOS R-series adopters with an urge for food for quick glass and pockets deep sufficient to fulfill it.

Key specs:

  • Focal size: 85mm
  • Aperture vary: F1.2-16 (In 1/Three EV stops)
  • Filter thread: 82mm
  • Shut focus: 0.85m (2.79 ft.)
  • Most magnification: 0.12x
  • Diaphragm blades: 9 (rounded diaphragm)
  • Hood: ET-89 round-shaped hood (provided)
  • Size / Diameter: approx. 103.2 x 117.3 (4.06 in. x 4.62in)
  • Weight: approx. 1,195g (approx. 2.63lbs)
  • Optical building: 13 parts in 9 teams


Aimed primarily at portrait, trend, marriage ceremony and occasion photographers, the RF 85mm F1.2L USM brings collectively a handful of RF-specific applied sciences with these seen beforehand within the EF line.

Regardless of its dimension and weight, the lens has been designed with simply 13 parts in 9 teams, though a few of these are essentially fairly massive. They embrace a single floor aspherical ingredient to maintain spherical aberration and nook softness from being an issue, and an Extremely Low Dispersion ingredient positioned simply forward of it to assist fight chromatic aberration.

Canon’s Blue Spectrum Refractive (BR) ingredient enormously refracts shorter wavelengths, making certain blue wavelengths focus on the similar airplane as longer wavelengths like purple and inexperienced. This will increase sharpness and reduces longitudinal spherical aberration, generally seen as coloration fringing.

Longitudinal chromatic aberration (LoCA), usually seen as purple and inexperienced fringing in entrance of and behind the focal airplane, respectively, is additional managed by way of the usage of a Blue Spectrum Refractive (BR) ingredient, one thing we first noticed three years in the past contained in the EF 35mm F1.4L II USM. Its function is to refract blue gentle – or slightly, brief wavelengths that correspond with what we see as blue – to a better diploma than standard optics would handle. By doing so, it’s higher capable of focus all wavelengths to the identical level, which in flip helps to quash longitudinal chromatic aberration and improve sharpness on the focal airplane. Fairly how properly it might achieve this is one thing we’ll be digging into in a while on this evaluate.

Serving to to maintain flare and ghosting down are Canon’s standard multi-coatings, whereas a single utility of the extra superior Air Sphere Coating (ASC) offers with sick results from gentle passing both parallel or close to parallel to the optical axis. 9 diaphragm blades, in the meantime, promise to maintain the diaphragm spherical for nicer out-of-focus highlights.

The lens accepts 82mm filters at its entrance and might focus as shut as 85cm (2.eight ft) away from the topic, which is a 10cm discount on the earlier EF 85mm f1.2 L II USM. Serving to to make its price ticket just a little simpler to swallow, Canon has thrown a deep spherical lens hood into the field, in addition to a pouch to maintain all of it protected when not in use.

What concerning the Canon RF 85mm F1.2L USM DS?

The lens on take a look at is joined by a barely extra expensive (+$300) ‘DS’ variant, and whereas the it adheres to the identical fundamental method and optical design because the non-DS model, the ‘DS’ suffix denotes the presence of Defocus Smoothing expertise. It is a new coating on two of its parts that’s mentioned to assist clean out the sides of out-of-focus areas, which the corporate claims is extra needed right here given the extra extreme correction for chromatic aberration. The impact is just like some specialised lenses from Fujifilm and Sony that include comparable apodization parts.

Whereas doubtlessly very helpful to devoted portrait photographers, the truth that the DS expertise comes at the price of as much as 1.5EV stops of sunshine transmission, and likewise produces photos with barely deeper depth of subject than the non-DS model explains why Canon has determined to offer the photographer the selection of each choices.


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