Canon RF 85mm F2 Full Review

Steve Dmark2

EOS M6 Mark II
Mar 30, 2016
Hello Guys,

Gordon has finished his, as one of the first, review of the new RF 85mm F2 IS STM lens. He compares it to the RF85mm F1.2L and the ancient EF 85mm F1.8.
As I own the later lens my personal interest was such a review to evaluate If I can justify the 680€ extra money.

In m case, I think I will update the the new RF lens, because of the two reasons: Much better detail and contrast, and the much smaller closeup focus distance.
Here is the video for own judments, have fun:

Cheers Stefan

Del Paso

M3 Singlestroke
Aug 9, 2018
The RF lens seems to be almost as sharp as the 1,2/85 RF...
After having bought the EF 1,4/85, I couldn't justify buying the 1,2/85, but a little RF 85 macro is now on my list ... along with the RF TSE 14mm, provided the later costs far less than a Mercedes S Class.
Good value for "little" money!


Feb 1, 2015
It's Friday local time, here in Poland. I had this lens attached to EOS R for a few hours, and I'm not sure if he won't come back to the store after the weekend for a refund. Knowing myself, it will probably end this way.

In short, if you don't have time to read: If you don't have a lens hood for this lens (like me and the rest of the world today), thank the seller for showing you this lens, leave the store and come back to it only when you will be able to buy a lens hood for this lens without any problems. Why? Because only then will you be able to start using this lens without stress.

What did I not like after the first contact with this lens?

1. First of all, the protruding tube, which is so delicate that when I accidentally rested it on my thigh, it hid and the lens motor started to make strange sounds. I believe that it is definitely more delicate than the tube known to me from the lenses I have, such as the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM and EF 50mm f/1.8 STM.

2. Mounting the circular filter (in my case Hoya Fusion Antistatic Protector, weight 22 grams) causes incomplete hiding of the tube after the camera is turned OFF. Some 1mm is left to hide, and the tube can be pushed by hand. After unscrewing the filter and repeating the whole operation, this problem does not occur.

3. The lens motor runs even when viewing photos in the rear LCD screen. You can hear that the stabilization has stopped, but the engine is still running. Is it supposed to be like that, or maybe it is a flaw of a specific lens? If for example, I have an EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM lens with stabilization on attached with an adapter, the stabilization is stopped and then the engine is completely turned off when viewing photos on the rear LCD screen. *

4. The lens motor works quite loud, and its normal work is hard to distinguish from work with stabilization on. With the stabilization on, there are additional sounds (in the form of standard scrapes and squeals), but these additional sounds are quiet enough that it's hard to know without looking at the stabilization switch whether it is on or not.

5. My left index finger always lands where the tube is extending, sometimes accidentally blocking its extension and/or retraction. A lens hood would solve this problem as that finger would land on it.

6. With the lens hood on, the lens will cease to be quite compact. The length of the lens is 90.5 mm, and the length of the dedicated lens hood (ET-77 symbol) is 53.3 mm which gives a total of 143.8 mm (just over 14 cm). I took the dimensions from the B&H store.

It's Saturday local time, here in Poland. I just got home from a visit to the local parcel locker, where I sent a return shipment to the store where I bought this lens.

* I consulted the owner of the RF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens on this matter, and his lens behaves the same. Apparently this is how it should be according to Canon.
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