Canon will soon announce the RF 600mm f/4L IS USM, RF 400mm f/2.8L IS USM and RF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro

Traveler

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Oct 6, 2019
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I'll be hated for this opinion but... I think that those lenses are the most unnecessary lenses of the whole RF lineup. If Canon didn't do some kind of magic then the RF lenses are gonna be pretty much same size as the EF lenses with the adapters on them.
And considering the price of them if I buy one adapter for each of them then it would be hassle free with no significant extra costs.
 

Danglin52

Wildlife Shooter
Aug 8, 2018
311
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I'll be hated for this opinion but... I think that those lenses are the most unnecessary lenses of the whole RF lineup. If Canon didn't do some kind of magic then the RF lenses are gonna be pretty much same size as the EF lenses with the adapters on them.
And considering the price of them if I buy one adapter for each of them then it would be hassle free with no significant extra costs.
Not hated, but you are obviously not the intended market for these lenses. I feel the same way about all the wide angle RF options that have been mentioned / requested because of my wildlife orientation. You could also use the adaptor argument for EF lenses in all categories. The reality is that Canon will need a full line of RF lenses to round out the R system. They can't launch a camera like the R1 without a fully baked lens lineup that will match the body / use case. I am a hobbyist, so I can accept the argument of using one of the EF Big Whites with an adaptor. If I was a pro on assignment, I wold not want to have an adaptor as a point of failure especially if I also needed a TC in the mix. Same goes when on a trip to Africa where an adaptor is just one more point of entry for dust. Canon is taking the same approach with the Big Whites they did with the RF trinity, get the best glass possible ready to support your bodies before launch (remember when everyone thought Canon was nuts before launch of R5/R6). Someone else pointed out there are competitive issues involved having RF BW lenses to complete with other mirrorless offerings. If I am buying a new R body and need a telephoto solution, whey would I want to drop $10k - $12 on a lens I KNEW was not the future direction of the system?

As a hobbyist, I would personally stick with an EF Big White I already owned unless the RF is significantly better/ faster/smaller/lighter. I sold my 200-400 f4 (which I loved) because I was tired of dragging around an 8lb lens. I would buy back in a heartbeat if they delivered a 200-400/500 f4 @ 5 1/2 to 6lbs. I am really hoping that Canon will commit to high quality DO lenses to solve some of the size/weight issues - like the EF 400 DO IS II.

BTW - I was going to take the adaptor approach with all of my EF lenses. After trying the R5, I knew I was never going back, sold everything EF and committed 100% to the RF system. The sale of the 200-400 (which I loved) was more related to size/weight and I decided I could work with the RF 100-500. No regrets on the conversion, but I do want another high quality BW quality zoom. I would love a RF 200-500 f4-f5.6 L IS @ the 5-6 lbs which should be possible considering the EF version III weight reductions.
 
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AlanF

Stay at home
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Aug 16, 2012
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400 f/2.8 III is as light as 300/2.8 II. I have used them side by side. You literally feel no difference between them. The weight is the same and the distance from the weight center of the lens to the mount is the same.
According to The Digital Picture

400mm f/2.8 III
Manufacturer Specification Weight



100.3 oz (2840g)
Actual Weight100.1 oz (2835g)
Lens Hood Weight9 oz (255g)
In-Use Weight109.1 oz (3090g)


300m f/2.8 II
Manufacturer Specification Weight

83 oz (2350g)
Actual Weight82.6 oz (2340g)
Lens Hood Weight6 oz (170g)
In-Use Weight88.6 oz (2510g)


It does seem that the 400mm/2.8 III is heavier by 580g (1 .25lb).
 

Traveler

EOS R
Oct 6, 2019
94
122
Not hated, but you are obviously not the intended market for these lenses. I feel the same way about all the wide angle RF options that have been mentioned / requested because of my wildlife orientation. You could also use the adaptor argument for EF lenses in all categories. .....
Thanks for such detailed explanation. My point was that wide lenses can benefit from the short flange distance whereas telephoto lenses can't (the 70-200 are amazing but they got reduced due to different design). All those big whites already have a pretty long distance between the rear lens and the sensor. I'm happy to be wrong.
But I still understand that when you pay 10K you just don't want to deal with adaptors. And the good thing for Canon is that they can just use the same design therefore the RD cost are not gonna be that huge.
I wish Canon can make the lenses smaller but I don't think it's even possible. And if it is possible then it would probably have been possible even for EF.
 

unfocused

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"I've rented the 600 EF and if this release puts more of the EF versions on the second-hand market, I'll be very happy."

We can dream and hope this happens but I don't anticipate any bargain buys on 600mm F4L iii's anytime in the foreseeable future. We're all holding our collective breaths as we wait for a price announcement on these new RF tele offerings, knowing that I won't be able to afford one, no matter the price. Oh well, one can dream and wish and drool over those that can.
Yeah, I know. But please, don't wake me from this pleasant dream.
 
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Dragon

EF 800L
May 29, 2019
453
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Maybe they are just RF-mount conversions of the version III 400mm and 600mm lenses so they work natively with the RF-mount cameras and teleconverters, while the rest will be new.
That wouldn't be the best decision. the EF 400 III and 600 III are a noticeable step down from the II models. They are lighter, but that is AFAIK, just about their only redeeming virtue. The RF versions should be able to support the expected upcoming 100 MP body with grace.
 
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Fischer

EOS RP
Mar 17, 2020
299
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I have no issues with my 300 2.8II on my R5, why the need to rush for the RF version?
Sold mine already as part of my RF transition. Better to sell while I can get a decent price. You may have noticed the first 3 Canon EF-lenses have now been discontinued. That's not good for resale values. Currently the RF 70-200 f/2.8 IS L and RF 100-500mm IS L make due as my style of photography is severely hampered by Corona. After summer things should be better - and I will be longing for a fast 300mm prime again. YMMV.
 

Chig

Birds in Flight Nutter
Jul 26, 2020
282
296
Orewa , New Zealand
How disappointing if Canon does not use DO technology. Several years ago, Canon was taking a 600mm F4 DO to the trade shows. It was very compact and light weight. The 400mm F4 DO ll has been an excellent lens. Canon has the technology to produce such lenses.
I agree and an RF 400 DO f/4 would hopefully be even lighter than the EF version ii's 2.1 kg maybe around 1.8kg and perhaps could have built in extenders.
Seems odd Canon isn't using DO in all it's premium telephotos
 

Fischer

EOS RP
Mar 17, 2020
299
215
BTW - I was going to take the adaptor approach with all of my EF lenses. After trying the R5, I knew I was never going back, sold everything EF and committed 100% to the RF system. The sale of the 200-400 (which I loved) was more related to size/weight and I decided I could work with the RF 100-500. No regrets on the conversion, but I do want another high quality BW quality zoom. I would love a RF 200-500 f4-f5.6 L IS @ the 5-6 lbs which should be possible considering the EF version III weight reductions.
This... (y)

Time to move on. Sooner or later all EF lenses will have to be changed anyway. I fully understand that it is a cost issue for many. But having the option to choose I cannot be bothered with the EF system anymore. Only waiting for a fast RF 35mm prime so I can sell my 35 mm L II and I'm out for good.
 
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Chig

Birds in Flight Nutter
Jul 26, 2020
282
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Orewa , New Zealand
Really would like an RF 400 mm DO f/4 as the EF version is the only long fast telephoto light enough to handhold at 2.1 kg (and it works well with 1.4x and 2x extenders) and if the RF version had built in 1.4x and 2x extenders would be ideal for birds in flight and sports
Also hope Canon can make the RF DO with a much shorter minimum focusing distance
Can't understand why Canon doesn't use fresnel lenses in all their super telephotos
 
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Bert63

What’s in da box?
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Dec 3, 2017
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I make a guess that it will be 2x the price.

The current price for the 100L just went from $899 and regularly on sale for $749 to a new regular price of $1299. Still wondering what happened there.

If it’s twice the price of the current 100L f2.8 then I’ll go on record right now saying it’s not worth the money because the 100L is fantastic on the R5.
 
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justaCanonuser

Grab your camera, go out and shoot!
Feb 12, 2014
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I guess this will the beginning of the end of Canon's pro DSLR line, because it would be too expensive to keep the EF versions of those superteles alive. It is quite logical now for Canon move on with ML cameras, given the shrinking market for system cameras. SLRs are mechanically and optically more complex than ML cameras and therefore more expensive to produce.
 
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AlanF

Stay at home
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Aug 16, 2012
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Really would like an RF 400 mm DO f/4 as the EF version is the only long fast telephoto light enough to handhold at 2.1 kg (and it works well with 1.4x and 2x extenders) and if the RF version had built in 1.4x and 2x extenders would be ideal for birds in flight and sports
Also hope Canon can make the RF DO with a much shorter minimum focusing distance
Can't understand why Canon doesn't use fresnel lenses in all their super telephotos
If it has built-in 1.4x and 2xTCs, they will a 1/2 kg or so to the weight. I find the current 400mm DO II with the 2xTC weighing in at 2.6kg in use on the heavy side and I would like to use the bare lens without the extra weight of the TCs.
 
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pcho

I'm New Here
Sep 9, 2015
10
3
Several things:
1. Agree with you about the DO technology. I almost bought the 400 DO when I sold my 200-400, but thought I would wait for a RF 400 DO IS (L?) version. I thought is was a great lens and liked the weight / size. It also did very well with the 1.4x TC. I was actually hoping for a 500 DO even if they had to go to f5.6 to make it work. I tried the RF 800mm f11, liked the IQ but not happy with the f11.
2. Very surprised they are releasing the RF 400 & RF 600 first since these RF lenses were recently updated and got the version III weight loss program. I am wondering if they were designed for both the EF/RF mounts during the last update and let's them bleed through EF inventory and have two BW ready to go. I really thought we would see the RF 300, 500 & 200-400 (500?) first. These are all very popular lenses, but I don't know how their sales compare to the 400/600.
3. I have been on a mission to lighten my wildlife load and happy with any weight / size reductions they can make on the BW lenses.
I think that’s exactly what happened with the 400 and 600 mklll. I was going to wait for the RF 600 but thought the EF 600mklll was more flexible as I still have 5dsR for birds and these bodies will still be around for 5-10 years. By then the designed will be too old and a new 600 will be released
 

Mr Majestyk

EOS RP
Feb 20, 2016
409
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Australia
I thought it was going to be an f/2 macro? Oh well no 300 f/2.8 or 500 f/4 which should be priorities as the EF lenses were never updated to mk III. Why rush out a 400 and 600 when the EF versions work perfectly on RF anyway. No pro will suddenly just drop another $12-15K on these if they already have the mk III version.
 
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Sean C

EOS M6 Mark II
Apr 21, 2015
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I thought it was going to be an f/2 macro? Oh well no 300 f/2.8 or 500 f/4 which should be priorities as the EF lenses were never updated to mk III. Why rush out a 400 and 600 when the EF versions work perfectly on RF anyway. No pro will suddenly just drop another $12-15K on these if they already have the mk III version.
I wonder if they mostly completed developing the RF versions alongside the MK III versions so they've been ready but for the delays affecting everything. (RF transition planning has been underway at Canon for quite awhile, so it'd make sense to prepare for RF as much as practical in the last days of EF product design)
 
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unfocused

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I guess this will the beginning of the end of Canon's pro DSLR line, because it would be too expensive to keep the EF versions of those superteles alive. It is quite logical now for Canon move on with ML cameras, given the shrinking market for system cameras. SLRs are mechanically and optically more complex than ML cameras and therefore more expensive to produce.
That's a lot of assumptions.

We don't know if it would be too expensive to keep the EF versions of these lenses alive. From what I understand there is a lot of hand assembly and hand finishing with these supertelephotos. Those are not things that would be impacted by keeping both lines alive. Most likely with these super expensive lenses Canon makes a set number and then switches to another model or line until inventory drops and then builds more. We don't have any idea how involved it is to switch from EF to R mounts. Keeping both an RF and an EF version in the catalog may not be nearly as problematic as you imagine. Would they make more EF versions once current inventory runs out? That likely depends on the demand not the cost.

While SLRs may be more complex than Mirrorless, we don't know if that makes them significantly more expensive to produce. Canon has been making SLRs for nearly 100 years. They have the manufacturing down to maximum efficiency. Given that they can offer DSLRs for $500 the cost difference between a DSLR and a Mirrorless camera may be insignificant for all we know. In addition, it's not as though there are no commonalities between DSLRs and Mirrorless cameras. They are actually more alike than they are different and no doubt many costs can be shared by both lines.

A shrinking market does not automatically mean a consolidation of lines. It's way too early in the life of Mirrorless cameras to know what percentage of customers will switch to the R line. As I posted before, Canon probably has a magic number in mind of what percentage of customers they can afford to lose vs. what it would cost them to maintain both DSLR and R lines. In many ways, a shrinking market in which each existing customer becomes more valuable to the company would argue for keeping both DSLRs and Rs going.
 
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Danglin52

Wildlife Shooter
Aug 8, 2018
311
309
That's a lot of assumptions.

We don't know if it would be too expensive to keep the EF versions of these lenses alive. From what I understand there is a lot of hand assembly and hand finishing with these supertelephotos. Those are not things that would be impacted by keeping both lines alive. Most likely with these super expensive lenses Canon makes a set number and then switches to another model or line until inventory drops and then builds more. We don't have any idea how involved it is to switch from EF to R mounts. Keeping both an RF and an EF version in the catalog may not be nearly as problematic as you imagine. Would they make more EF versions once current inventory runs out? That likely depends on the demand not the cost.

While SLRs may be more complex than Mirrorless, we don't know if that makes them significantly more expensive to produce. Canon has been making SLRs for nearly 100 years. They have the manufacturing down to maximum efficiency. Given that they can offer DSLRs for $500 the cost difference between a DSLR and a Mirrorless camera may be insignificant for all we know. In addition, it's not as though there are no commonalities between DSLRs and Mirrorless cameras. They are actually more alike than they are different and no doubt many costs can be shared by both lines.

A shrinking market does not automatically mean a consolidation of lines. It's way too early in the life of Mirrorless cameras to know what percentage of customers will switch to the R line. As I posted before, Canon probably has a magic number in mind of what percentage of customers they can afford to lose vs. what it would cost them to maintain both DSLR and R lines. In many ways, a shrinking market in which each existing customer becomes more valuable to the company would argue for keeping both DSLRs and Rs going.
There is a delicate balance between harvesting a legacy product and moving customers to new technology /producto. There is a lot of cost other than manufacturing costs in a product offering - inventory, warehousing, marketing, service, support, etc. There may also be issues with both products requiring scarce materials. Assuming their manufacturing was sized for current EF production and is highly specialized, they will need to shift production to meet ramp up for the roll out and sales surge (hopefully). Canon will want to meet demand for the new RF series whic may require scaling back the EF. A lot will depend availability of the R5 and delivery of an R1. I moved to the R5 from 1dxII / 5D IV, absolutely no regrets shooting widlife with the R5. Canon did a really good job with the R5 and under normal circumstances I think we would see a rapid transition.