First look: Canon RF 50mm f/1.2L USM Image Quality

highdesertmesa

EOS T7i
Apr 17, 2017
70
39
Placitas, NM
www.flickr.com
Are you sure you owned 5D Mk IV? It's especially good in terms of colour noise, including the shadows. At ISO 100 it's virtually non-existent and still pretty good at high ISOs. You need to really push the sensor to its limits in order to get the colour noise.
I did. But I eventually landed on the 5DsR/100-400 II for tele shots + GFX for 100mm and below. I shoot lower ISOs, and I preferred the resolution, lack of AA filter, and overall IQ of the 5DsR over the 5D4.
 

highdesertmesa

EOS T7i
Apr 17, 2017
70
39
Placitas, NM
www.flickr.com
There is a limit to where you can push shadows but this has been seriously improved from the 5D3. Even DPReview acknowledged that. If I recall correctly it had put the 5D4 just one stop below the sonikons in the shadow raising. But how many stops do you need to raise the shadows?

EDIT: If you went for GFX then I cannot comment on it - I do not know anything about it. Since its sensor is huge you must enjoy and/or need some very serious performance there.
I went 5DsR/GFX and couldn't look back to the 5D4. The 5DsR blew my mind – finally I was seeing razor sharp images at 1:1. I don't often make large prints, but I love the on-screen viewing experience of the higher res, no AA filter and being able to crop deeply for additional reach. Also prefer the more film grain-like quality of the 5DsR noise over the 5D4, and since I shoot lower ISOs, it was a good fit for my needs. At higher ISOs, the 5D4 is a more competitive offering, but I was evaluating at 400 and lower. And I'm in the minority with this observation, but I thought the 5DsR autofocus seemed more responsive than the 5D4, at least with the 100-400 II.

And yes, the GFX sensor + GF lenses is amazing. It's not only raising shadows that I need, it's the ability to apply destructive adjustments like Dehaze without the image falling apart (landscape shots), even at ISO 100. The GFX was the first sensor I've used that a liberal Dehaze filter wouldn't introduce too much noise at ISO 100.

I'm holding out hope for the 5DsR followup camera from Canon – recently sold my 5DsR and am waiting on news.
 

6degrees

RF 85mm F1.2
Sep 6, 2018
97
67
I think Canon deliberately does not put all the important features, like IBIS, dual cards, full 4k video, eye AF, etc. into Canon R. Because Canon doesn’t want to impact its existing DSLR sales, not because Canon can’t do it or not plan to do it in the future.

To lure mirrorless crowd and not to impact its DSLR sales, they decide to put out two stellar lenses, 50RF and 28-70RF, which will be on top of each category to show the superior potentials of Canon R.

The two lenses are the things worth to own at the moment, and if you anticipate Canon R will surprise users down the road.

Do not question the two RF lenses. EF lenses won’t be able to compete with them. If your brain is clear, you will know DSLR/EF may just have a few years to go. It is old technology. It will be ended when Canon is fully ready to jump the ship.

JMTC.
 
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tron

EOS 5D SR
Nov 8, 2011
4,085
384
Since 5D MkIV has better shadow behaviour than 5DsR it seems that you contradict yourself somehow. Unless you do not care about this in your telephoto shots. But anyway the 5DsR + 100-400II is a very nice combo.
 

adamfilip

Canadian with 5DM3
Jun 23, 2011
53
5
Ontario, Canada
A straight EF version would be even better! I know the adapter thing was a joke, but I wonder if Canon is really only going to make an RF version of this lens.
This lens is possible because of the RF Mount, they cant make a EF version of this. Lens Elements are specifically made for the RF mount distance. Notice how small the front element is. with RF Lenses the front element is relatively small compared to the rear element. opposite of EF lenses, the RF mount enables Canon to make sharper brighter lenses, checkout the whitepaper on the RF Mount / lenses its very interesting
 

gmon750

EOS T7i
Jan 30, 2015
76
34
EF is either already end of line or so close to being so that further investment should be thoroughly considered.
It’s not anywhere near EOL. Did you already forget the new EF lenses Canon introduced alongside their R line? It’ll be years before Canon abandons it’s dSLR market.

Quit making stuff up.
 
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privatebydesign

Would you take advice from a cartoons stuffed toy?
Jan 29, 2011
7,967
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IF we accept that the adapter does not degrade IQ then sorry but an EF lens with the same design and 2cm extension would do the job (oversimplifying for fun but you get the point). Unless you are a lens designer you shouln't use the phrase: "they cant make a EF version of this." when referring to Canon (or any other manufacturer).
No it's true, the reduced flange distance allows the lens designers to put elements further back in the design that completely changes the possibilities with regards the optical path. This is particularly relevant on lens that are close to or lower in focal length than the flange distance, the RF mount will gain very little in lens IQ where the focal length is 60-80mm and above, it has the possibility to improve aberrations in lenses 60-80mm and below in focal length, especially in the 50-20mm range, below 20mm it still has to have a refocus design, though not as extreme as the EF designs. So an RF 11-24 is very unlikely in the foreseeable future and lenses over 100mm will show very little if any IQ improvements over EF lenses used on an adapter.

If you look at the back of the EF 50 f1.2L and the 85 f1.2L you will see the rear element is fixed in the mount, it is fixed as far back as possible, a 'better' design would put it even further back which is possible with the RF mount but not possible with the EF mount.
 
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tron

EOS 5D SR
Nov 8, 2011
4,085
384
No it's true, the reduced flange distance allows the lens designers to put elements further back in the design that completely changes the possibilities with regards the optical path. This is particularly relevant on lens that are close to or lower in focal length than the flange distance, the RF mount will gain very little in lens IQ where the focal length is 60-80mm and above, it has the possibility to improve aberrations in lenses 60-80mm and below in focal length, especially in the 50-20mm range, below 20mm it still has to have a refocus design, though not as extreme as the EF designs. So an RF 11-24 is very unlikely in the foreseeable future and lenses over 100mm will show very little if any IQ improvements over EF lenses used on an adapter.

If you look at the back of the EF 50 f1.2L and the 85 f1.2L you will see the rear element is fixed in the mount, it is fixed as far back as possible, a 'better' design would put it even further back which is possible with the RF mount but not possible with the EF mount.
You answered too quickly! I have already though I made a mistake and deleted it (although I still believe only Canon employees know what they can and what they cannot). Since there is a super good 35mm 1.4L II and a very good 85mm 1.4L IS I still believe that 50 1.2L can be improved even not to the point of the RF lens but at least somewhere in between.
 

fullstop

EOS 6D MK II
Apr 23, 2018
1,088
153
Like ants still doing their jobs when the queen is dead. EF is EOL, but that doesn't mean the ecosystem is dead. Yet.
exactly. They don't want to understand it. Because they bought sh*t expensive EF glass and thought they'd be king with it. Forever!
They were so delusional to seriously believe Canon would bring big fat mirrorfree cameras with native EF mount pig snout. Slap, slap, slap! :p:D
 
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BillB

EOS 6D MK II
May 11, 2017
1,153
390
exactly. The don't want to understand it. Because they bought sh*t expensive EF glass and thought they'd be king with it. Forever!
They were so delusional to seriously believe Canon would bring big fat mirrorfree cameras with native EF mount pig snout. Slap, slap, slap! :p:D
The bought pretty good EF glass and they still have pretty good EF glass. I don't know about thinking they were king, or whether they are delusional. That seems to be your department.
 
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highdesertmesa

EOS T7i
Apr 17, 2017
70
39
Placitas, NM
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Since 5D MkIV has better shadow behaviour than 5DsR it seems that you contradict yourself somehow. Unless you do not care about this in your telephoto shots. But anyway the 5DsR + 100-400II is a very nice combo.
I qualified that I shoot under ISO 400, and I prefer the film-grain noise of the 5DsR over the chroma storm of the 5D4, so the trade-off was worth it to me. I do think the 5D4 has better overall color IQ, for what it's worth. If the 5D4 didn't have an AA filter or a very weak one like the original 5D, I might have stayed with it.

But back to my original post, I was simply stating the Canon R sensor and Canon's reputation (deserved or not) for lagging behind in DR isn't doing them any favors here. I wanted to see Canon's first mirrorless offering to showcase a new sensor that surpassed the 5D4 either in resolution, dynamic range, or both. We can all go down the "it's good enough" or "do you really need that?" rabbit holes until we end up using iPhones, or we can expect and even demand more in order to get our money.
 

privatebydesign

Would you take advice from a cartoons stuffed toy?
Jan 29, 2011
7,967
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We can all go down the "it's good enough" or "do you really need that?" rabbit holes until we end up using iPhones, or we can expect and even demand more in order to get our money.
Or you can point to another manufacturer that is producing noticeably higher quality output, but you can't, because all of them are within a spitting distance.

Canon offer the highest resolution in a 135 format.
Canon offer the highest DR range in a 135 format from a single capture in a dual pixel RAW format, if you don't want the hassle of that then they lag by at most <1 stop of DR.

Demand whatever you want, but don't keep on with the Canon is lagging meme or use that, truth or not, to criticize them for not beating the competition by more.
 

jd7

EOS 7D MK II
Feb 3, 2013
747
109
You answered too quickly! I have already though I made a mistake and deleted it (although I still believe only Canon employees know what they can and what they cannot). Since there is a super good 35mm 1.4L II and a very good 85mm 1.4L IS I still believe that 50 1.2L can be improved even not to the point of the RF lens but at least somewhere in between.
And the TDP comparison between the RF 50L and a DSLR with the Otus 55 or Sigma 50 Art also tends to suggest you are right. After seeing that comparison my enthusiasm for the RF 50 disappeared. I want to see more comparisons (including factors other than sharpness) but at this point I do not see the RF 50 being any great step forward.
 
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David Littleboy

EOS M50
Mar 7, 2015
26
6
I agree about things getting a little out of hand. All I really want is a really good 1.4 (and I don't think I"m the only one). But an AF lens that is lighter than the Otus (which is manual focus), half the price, and almost as good IQ is pretty good. Although, as mentioned above, I guess the Sigma Art is close to all those, and even cheaper. And if I'm paying for a modern digital camera, I do want AF lenses to go along with it. I still shoot film, and love the IQ, size, and weight of my Summicron, but I don't love manual focus. It is maddening, though, that all these modern AF lenses have to be what feels like 10 times the size and weight of a little Summicron (in reality I'm sure it's a little less--I've never run the numbers).
Manual focus is fine if the lens reports to the camera and the aperture works. I got tired of the weight of the 24-70/2.8 II, and used the Voightlander Ultron 40/2.0 pancake lens for a while. On the 5D2, it's essentially AF, in that you half press, turn the ring until the AF system beeps, and shoot. Unless you are doing sports, it's fine. If you consider the time to frame the shot and select the AF point, it's really not all that slower than full AF. With no lens/camera interface, I'm sure it's a different story.

Size is important, too. The (discontinued) Zeiss 21/2.8 EF is "only" 600 gm, but it feels ridiculously large and heavy. The small lenses are in the 1/3 to 2/3 of that weight range, but you simply don't notice the weight.

I think Canon _was_ listening to us on the maddeningness of the weight business with the 24-105/4.0 RF. It's just that people (like me!) look at the MTF and test charts and complain if it ain't perfect, so most of their new lenses are enormous. Sigh.
 
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highdesertmesa

EOS T7i
Apr 17, 2017
70
39
Placitas, NM
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It's ok. Canon will eventually produce a sensor that surpasses the competition. Not sure why only following a step or two behind the competition is acceptable, but likely the stellar glass keeps us holding on. I know it keeps me holding out hope for Canon, because I love the 100-400 II. You and I are not going to agree on this, so I'm putting my side of it to bed. I hope Canon can do better than the 5D4, and when they do – say a 45+mp AA-free body with better dynamic range and an RF 100-400 – I'll be there to buy it.
 

privatebydesign

Would you take advice from a cartoons stuffed toy?
Jan 29, 2011
7,967
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It's ok. Canon will eventually produce a sensor that surpasses the competition. Not sure why only following a step or two behind the competition is acceptable, but likely the stellar glass keeps us holding on. I know it keeps me holding out hope for Canon, because I love the 100-400 II. You and I are not going to agree on this, so I'm putting my side of it to bed. I hope Canon can do better than the 5D4, and when they do – say a 45+mp AA-free body with better dynamic range and an RF 100-400 – I'll be there to buy it.
I wouldn't know either, ask Nikon, their D5 is far and away the worst performer when compared to the direct competition. Other than that D5 there is never more than a stop difference between the big three anywhere in the iso range on any of their three most comparable cameras. Less than a stop is not the same as "a step or two".

If you look at the plots you will see Canon lead at some points of the DR scale, the 1DX MkII is better than the Sony or the Nikon between 160 and 600 iso, guess where I use my 1DX MkII most? So I could get a Nikon or Sony and get less sensor performance at my most used iso? At iso 320 the 5D MkIV outperforms both the Sony and the Nikon.

All nine cameras are within 1 stop of each other at all points on the iso range apart from the Nikon D5 that has comparatively bad performance at low iso, I think it is fair to say they are within spitting distance of each other, nobody has a clear advantage anywhere.

You saying I am in "denial" is delusional, especially as I bring actual independent verifiable and repeatable evidence backing up my opinion.

Now you have been shown to be 100% wrong we can both put our sides to bed. Wait for whatever you want, I am, just don't come out with crass comments about Canon lagging behind in sensor performance, it isn't true, it isn't accurate, and it can be shown to be untrue.
 
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privatebydesign

Would you take advice from a cartoons stuffed toy?
Jan 29, 2011
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It's not about having different opinions, we are all entitled to our opinions and we are the only ones that can determine what equipment will work best for us or wether we need a specific feature set or not, it's about agreeing what the verifiable facts are.

The verifiable facts do not back up your opinion, they do support my opinion.
 
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