Canon's EF 500mm f/4L IS USM II is going to be a zoom for the RF mount first. We have confirmed that a Canon RF 200-500mm f/4L IS USM will likely be coming in Q4, or perhaps in Q1 of 2024 ahead of the Canon EOS R1.
The Canon RF 200-500mm f/4L IS USM will not come with a built-in teleconverter. Fear not, there will be a nice teleconverter solution coming for both the Canon RF 100-300mm f/2.8L IS USM and the Canon RF 200-500mm f/4L IS USM. Canon wants to make such a lens as light as possible, and the built-in teleconverter design does add weight and size to the design.
Such a lens will cost a lot, but don't they always?
The image associated with this post is the Canon EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM 1.4x
The 400/2.8 and 600/4 as "common" primes exists (but are the EF ones with converter, I think they will replaced someday)
But for the one in between (like the 500/4), this zoom lenses are made for.
How is this any different from the existing 1.4x and 2x TC's? Is there going to be a new set of RF TCs?
Canonwatch posted a patent that likely applies to the TC: Canon Variable TC
It has to be very wide to take the internally swivelling lenses. If they have a TC designed like this, it would give a choice of two focal length multipliers when inserted, say 1.4x or 2x, or even 1x or 2x etc.
Can this market really be worth more than the forgotten middle of amateurs, currently awaiting some equivalent of Sony’s 200–600mm zoom or Nikon’s Fresnel lens (DO, in Canon-speak) telephoto primes? I suspect it really isn’t, but those people don’t have the ear of Canon’s sales department in the way the professional photographers do.
But, what has my attention, along with several other people "Fear not, there will be a nice teleconverter solution coming for both the Canon RF 100-300mm f/2.8L IS USM and the Canon RF 200-500mm f/4L IS USM."
I am hoping this is not spending more money to have the lenses sent to Canon to be retrofited. While I would still prefer a built in TC, the variable TC discuss above would be intriguing. Maybe Canon put that new supercomputer to good use.
Canon could have chosen to go with the "shift to the side" design of the internal TC of the 200-400, but they must have taken sufficient flak from users to not going down that road again.
- either are unable to produce
- or are too expensive for them to make
- or are unable to amortize
Remember what's been said about the 100-300 zoom, limited market, low demand, too specialized, etc... The usual litany.
Well, it seems Canon cannot meet the high demand...
And yes, they'll certainly cost more.:(
I wonder what the demand would be for a 14, 24, 35 L Prime. Guess they have to leave something for users waiting and wanting more.
Of course, mass-production wasn't meant! It is and remains a niche lens.
At the same time, I do not think Canon should ignore that market.
It has generally caused people to switch to Sony and Nikon.