Photograph created with Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM lens.
Martin Mojzis / Fine Art Photography and Graphic Art Atelier.

CANON RF 50 MM 1 : 1.2 L USM.

INTERESTING FIFTY.

☼ January 22, 2019.
As I mentioned several times, the focal length of 50 mm belongs to my favorite. After an excellent and yet affordable ►EF 50 mm 1: 1.8 STM, today we look at the much more expensive Canon RF 50 mm 1: 1.2 L USM. The lens belongs to the first series with a new RF mount, so it can only be used with the ►Canon EOS R camera.

The lens design is a combination of metal and plastic parts. There are two rings, focusing and with an optional function. There are two switches on the side. The first is switching the auto focus on or off. The second is to determine the distance, to which the lens will focus – either from 80 cm to infinity, or unlimited.

Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM. The lens hood is locked by a small lock under the button, a nice thing. The lens and the hood are made in Japan.

The lens is resistant to dust and splash water.

Let's look at the technical specifications first.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS, DIMENSIONS AND PRICE.

Focal length:

55 mm.

Minimum aperture:

1.2.

Maximum aperture:

16.

Optical design:

15 elements in 9 groups.

Angle of View:

46°.

Minimum Focus Distance:

40 cm.

Diaphragm Blades:

10, rounded.

Filter Thread Diameter:

77 mm.

Dimensions (D x L):

89.8 x 108 mm.

Weight:

950 g.

Price:

2500 € or $2300.


And now some sample photographs. There was no filter on the lens. File type RAW (CR3), converted to DNG, no compression indeed. Processed in Adobe Lightroom 6.14, the basic sharpening 25/1/25/0 was left, which I have proven to be a reference when testing lenses.

The crops are 100% size at 150 dpi. So far you look close at the fragment of a more than one meter image, precisely with a longer side of 113 cm.

Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ REFLEKCTORS. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, 1/40, 1/13, 1/3 a 1.6 second, aperture f/1.2, 2, 4, 8, 14, ISO 100.
Reflexes, veins ... too much for new, professional grade lens.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ NIGHT WINDOW. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/200 second, aperture f/1.2, ISO 160.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
And it is beginning now. Fully open lens and sharpness, for which we must at other lenses set aperture to f/5.6 – 8.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ NOT EASY. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100 second, aperture f/1.2, ISO 1250.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.



Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ POST BOX. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100 second, aperture f/1.2, ISO 500.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
Some longitudinal chromatic aberrations (purple tracks around most contrast edges).


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ NIGHT ON THE RAILSTATION. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 500.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
So sharp lens when fully open (moreover photographed over a bit dirty glass with security foil!) practically do not need image stabilisation. ISO 500 is not a problem for todays cameras, even if there is a lack of light, noise is a bit more pronounced.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ SEA LEVEL. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/2, ISO 500.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
Due to the inclination of the image plane (the plate is approximately 2 m above the ground), I increased aperture a bit. The sharpness of the resulting photograph is slightly reduced by hand-correcting of verticals in Adobe Lightroom.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ REFLECTOR. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.8, ISO 100.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
A visible veil around the reflector. On the other hand, the chromatic aberration length is minimal. Maybe it's just something for something?


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ SIGN. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 1600.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
The ability to photograph with a completely open lens is incredibly inspiring and is very quick to get used to it. In this case, however, it would be better to use higher aperture and make the whole sign sharp, but I wanted to show here how small the depth of field is.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ DIRECTION. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 6400.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
Table is tilted also in real.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ SWITCH. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 3200.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
If the depth of field is small enough, it is possible to work with larger units as well, and after the reduction for publication on the internet it will be noticeable.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ THORNY AMPLION. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 200.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
The picture is slightly under-exposed, I did not want to overexpose the background light. Even so, the excellent sharpness is obvious.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ CIRCLES. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 1000.
Second photograph is crop from 100% size at 150 dpi.
So yes. Beautiful, creamy bokeh.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ LAMPS. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/100, aperture f/1.2, ISO 400.
Second and third photograph are crops from 100% size at 150 dpi.
Still the unfortunate reflections and veils.


Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM ↑ ON THE EDGE OF THE FOREST. Canon EOS R, exposure time 1/250, 1/125, 1/50, 1/25, 1/6, 1/2 second, aperture f/1.2, 1.8, 2.8, 4, 8, 13, ISO 100.
Crops are from 100% size at 150 dpi.
If you are inspired and enjoy the work with depth of field, Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM is lens for you.


If there were not those unfortunate reflections and veils, it would be one of the best fifties at all. Such sharpness and contrast with a fully opened aperture are rarely seen. And to use aperture really, and just because there is a need for more depth of field, not to improve sharpness and contrast, it's really not normal. Microcontrast? Many lenses do not even know what it is ... a new RF 50 mm 1: 1.2 L USM has it for handing out. So why ...

Very similar feelings I had at the ►Olympus M. Zuiko Digital ED 25 mm 1: 1.2 Pro. Due to the smaller sensor, the display angle is just fifty, but still it is a twenty-five, a wide-angle lens, so the optical design is somewhat different. And again: peak sharpness, contrast, beautiful microcontrast. Spotlight – catastrophe. True, the new Canon RF is a bit better, which could be because the aperture blades are also equipped with anti-reflective layers, albeit because it is a 50, not 25 mm focal point. But it's still there.

In terms of design, both lenses are very, very complex. They contain many optical elements, too much in my opinion. Yes, a number of optical defects are eliminated ... but, for example, chromatic aberrations can be automatically corrected by Lightroom by one click. But try to find a program, that would self-refine all those reflections and veils. I know, the aberrations occur more often, but we do not often shoot in a harsh spotlight. But nowadays, when there is a progressive exchange of classical light sources with LED everywhere, many companies are focusing on this perspective area, and a many jobs for us, photographers, is also related to this. And try to give the customer the images with those reflections and veils. No, really, do not do it. And do you think someone will pay you the hours spent by retouching these defects? No way. Instead, you need to use a different lens, especially the simpler optical design and the best anti-reflection coatings. Which after the investment of $2300 for the new beautiful fifty will not be too pleased.

The whole thing is also complicated by what is now claimed as a benefit from all photographic manufacturers. Thus, the proximity of the rear lens element to the image sensor. Yes, in terms of the light beam path, it is really good, but at the same time all the reflections from the glossy sensor surface, which have a longer path in the DSLR and thus a greater probability of ending in the matte surfaces of the mirror chamber, in mirrorless devices, ending mercilessly back in the lens. And as you can see, not even good anti-reflection layers are not enough for them.

Canon RF 50 mm 1 : 1.2 L USM What to say at the end? If the light sources photography is the main for you, I can not recommend this lens. In all other cases, especially where you use a shallow depth of field and cutting sharpness, great contrast and microcontrast – do not look further, you are at the finish. Just for order I remind, you can effortlessly and unrestrictably mount the almost all EF lenses to the EOS R camera, RF lenses you can use at this time with only one camera, and that's Canon EOS R.

So, engineers. Let's prepare for this autumn version II, just as good, without reflections and veils only. One of the best fifties in the world. The basis is already finished.

Finally, I would like to point out, that this article is no way supported or influenced by Canon or any other company.

© Martin Mojzis, 2019.
Photographies: © Martin Mojzis, 2018.

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