Patent: Canon RF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro

Joules

doom
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Jul 16, 2017
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They don't actually compare it to an EF lens, just a simulation of a lens using a configuration similar to EF...

Canon have been very careful not to directly compare lenses across the two mounts. The 70-200 2.8 and 50 1.8 certainly don't perform better than heir EF predecessors.
No, they don't compare it to a real EF lens. But I read it as implying that the lens configuration they show are typical conceptual approaches they would take when designing an EF lens.

Both lenses you mentioned are significantly smaller and in the case of the 70-200 also much lighter than their predecessors. In what way is that not better?

I have not bothered looking at side by side comparisons of the 70-200. But the RF 50 mm 1.8 is clearly much better in the edges compared to the EF one.
 

Antono Refa

EOS R
Mar 26, 2014
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And the idea "the market leader dropped features from their new products for absolutely no reason" has a scent of cynicism. What's your point?

When did stating a fact, e.g. "Canon has dropped a feature from a new product for, as far as you can tell, absolutely no reason", became cynicism?

As I said, I won't pretend to understand enough about Optics to challenge Canon's claims. Canon has actually already published a number of marketing and white paper documents that touch on these subjects. From page 9 on the R system white paper, they highlight a big advantage of the new system:

"Large diameter rear lens elements that are much closer to the full frame image sensor —enhancing overall optical performance (in particular, tighter control over optical aberrations at image extremities)"

Quotes from marketing materials have stopped impressing me a long time ago.
 

Joules

doom
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When did stating a fact, e.g. "Canon has dropped a feature from a new product for, as far as you can tell, absolutely no reason", became cynicism?
Making the assumption that the intend behind an action (reducing TC compatibility) is either nefarious or just indifference (or the action is the result of incompetence) is cynical in my mind. At least as long as there is no good reason to believe any of these things.

Quotes from marketing materials have stopped impressing me a long time ago.

Well, the quote was from the white paper. But of course, you are right in being skeptical of claims put forward by a manufacturer. I presented the quote mostly because you seemed to state that you wished for a statement from Canon about the placement of their rear elements, and I wanted to show you that they have in fact already provided that.

What you do with the information given in this way is up to you. As I said, I don't have the expertise necessary to bring forward a valid criticism of Canon's explanation. If you do have these, please share some of it.

I don't even know what you are arguing. As far as I can tell, you posed a question and I tried to provide an answer. That does not seemed to have been what you wanted to hear, so maybe you could kindly elaborate.

All new RF design we have seen are as good or better optically as their EF versions, aren't they? And in the cases where the EF version were already optically great, the RF versions do seem to show improved quality to size/weight ratio. They also do have large rear elements close to the sensor in most cases. Anything wrong with that?

Canon claimed in their white papers that these close rear elements were something that would allow them to bring forward improved designs and I just don't see why you would doubt them. But maybe you are not and what ever you want to hear has just not been clear to me at all.
 
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lexptr

Photograph the nature while it exists...
Aug 8, 2014
79
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The lens might feel a bit long iwth that adapter on it, but then, the camera is shorter.

Unless you double-count the adapter!
Camera is shorter, but sensor placed further from camera back, relative to placement in 5D. So the adapter should place the lens further form camera's back to maintain proper sensor to bayonet distance. And therefore the depth of R5+adapter (back to bayonet) is greater, then 5D. Probably, about half an inch, but still. Add to that smaller size and weight of R5 and you get much les comfortable setup for handheld usage.
 

Antono Refa

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Mar 26, 2014
1,292
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Making the assumption that the intend behind an action (reducing TC compatibility) is either nefarious or just indifference (or the action is the result of incompetence) is cynical in my mind. At least as long as there is no good reason to believe any of these things.

I made no such assumption, merely stated two facts (i) the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 is not compatible with TC, and (ii) you can't present a rationale for the incompatibility. E.g. you haven't compared the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 to the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS III USM or the nikkor z 70 200mm f 2.8 vr to show the IQ benefit of the large back element.

Well, the quote was from the white paper. But of course, you are right in being skeptical of claims put forward by a manufacturer.

Gasp! You don't say!

I presented the quote mostly because you seemed to state that you wished for a statement from Canon about the placement of their rear elements, and I wanted to show you that they have in fact already provided that.

No. I'm looking for a specific & measurable benefit that could be reasonably said to outweigh the incompatibility with TCs.

All new RF design we have seen are as good or better optically as their EF versions, aren't they?

I wouldn't call having twice the vignetting @200mm f/2.8 better. I've heard Canon sacrifices vignetting & radial distortion for sharpness, but at this point I think it has become ridiculous.

And in the cases where the EF version were already optically great, the RF versions do seem to show improved quality to size/weight ratio. They also do have large rear elements close to the sensor in most cases. Anything wrong with that?

Not if you can show said improved image quality.

Canon claimed in their white papers that these close rear elements were something that would allow them to bring forward improved designs and I just don't see why you would doubt them.

I care not about what it would allow them to bring forward as much as what I would[n't] actually get for $2,300. Which is why I'm delaying the move to MILC, and looking at what Nikon & Sony have to offer.
 

Del Paso

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Aug 9, 2018
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Even though I usually tend to prefer OEM lenses, this new RF 100mm macro will face competition from the new Sigma 100 macro, which all reviews report to be outstanding...
Much will depend on the RF's features (2:1 ?) and on its price.
Since, with EOS R bodies, there are no more focusing issues with foreign lenses, the Sigma could offer a much better value.
 

figiko

eos RP
Jul 8, 2020
8
1
I want 2 times magnification ratio, not just 1:1 or I don't see the need the get rid of the ef-rf adapter. A 2:1 macro lens with autofocus (even slow) and good stabilization (in body or both, just the best possible) and my dream would come true for handheld wildlife macro photography!
 

Joules

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Jul 16, 2017
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I made no such assumption, merely stated two facts (i) the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 is not compatible with TC, and (ii) you can't present a rationale for the incompatibility.
Your second statement is not a fact. I can present plenty of rationales. If they are the ones that compelled Canon to design their lenses as they did, is another matter. I have no insight into that, so can only put forward speculation.

For example, as the resolution of their bodies has gone up, Canon may believe sufficient parts of the market do not require TCs any more and therefore they reduce the cost of their development process by dropping it as a design requirement (or more likely, not add it as a requirement - the EF 70-200mm lenses never were on an official compatibility list, we're they?).

I was under the impression that you acknowledged that Canon also put forward a rationale on their own (more flexible in design with large, closer rear element) and dismissed it because it is something a big Company put forward. You mused that assuming an aspect of a design was compromised in order to improve another was Fanboying. And I mused assuming a lack of a good rationale is cynical.

Where does this leave us? Nowhere in particular, I think. Even if I were a Fanboy and you a Cynic, so be it. Sorry for trying to be snarky.

No. I'm looking for a specific & measurable benefit that could be reasonably said to outweigh the incompatibility with TCs.
I think that's where you run into trouble. By comparing full, released designs, it is infeasible to determine how much impact each aspect of the design has on each of the metrics you could measure (resolution, contrast, vignetting, distortion, weight, AF, IS, weather resistence...).

For example, the RF 70-200 2.8 being only ~ 70 % the weight of the EF version or the Nikon Z one is a factor that is probably the result of multiple design aspects.

So ideally you would get your information from an unbiased expert, but I would imagine input of that sort to become very technical and academic and hard to access.

As for your second part, the value of TC compatibility is very subjective. Depending on where Canon takes the resolution of future bodies and whether they release a TC that doesn't portrude into the lens body, it may change further.
 

Antono Refa

EOS R
Mar 26, 2014
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Your second statement is not a fact. I can present plenty of rationales. If they are the ones that compelled Canon to design their lenses as they did, is another matter. I have no insight into that, so can only put forward speculation.

Speculation is not rationale. Its guesses as to what Canon's rationale might be.

Resolution is a great point. I didn't upgrade from the 5DmkII to mkIII, then mkIV for the resolution. I would be plenty happy with 20MP. Which leads me to...

Take this as an open question, without a shred of cynicism: which combo would give me better results, an R5 & RF 70-200mm cropped 50%, or a Nikon Z6II & TC 1.4x & Z 70-200mm f/2.8? With a hand on your heart, does the difference justify spending $1,450? Would you consider me a cynic for considering a switch to Nikon Z?

I was under the impression that you acknowledged that Canon also put forward a rationale on their own (more flexible in design with large, closer rear element) and dismissed it because it is something a big Company put forward.

Its marketing material, unless quantifiable, e.g. the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM is that much sharper than the EF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS III USM.

You mused that assuming an aspect of a design was compromised in order to improve another was Fanboying. And I mused assuming a lack of a good rationale is cynical.

My point is your willingness to assume there's an improvement, though you can't name it. Not being compatible with a TC is a concrete limitation. If you linked reviews comparing the EF version on a 5Ds to the RF on an R5 to show the new lens is twice as sharp, I would agree a 1.4x TC is redundant. But you don't.

Where does this leave us? Nowhere in particular, I think. Even if I were a Fanboy and you a Cynic, so be it. Sorry for trying to be snarky.

The point isn't I'm a cynic. The point is I think Canon made a mistake by making the RF 70-200mm f/2.8 incompatible with TCs.

I think that's where you run into trouble. By comparing full, released designs, it is infeasible to determine how much impact each aspect of the design has on each of the metrics you could measure (resolution, contrast, vignetting, distortion, weight, AF, IS, weather resistence...).

For example, the RF 70-200 2.8 being only ~ 70 % the weight of the EF version or the Nikon Z one is a factor that is probably the result of multiple design aspects.

Saving 30% on weight is an excellent example. I could buy "Canon sacrificed TC compatibility for 30% weight save".

As for your second part, the value of TC compatibility is very subjective. Depending on where Canon takes the resolution of future bodies and whether they release a TC that doesn't portrude into the lens body, it may change further.

Indeed, which is one reason I'm waiting with the move to MILC. When I raised the point of other manufacturers making TCs that do not protrude into the lens body, I was told that compromised on image quality. I'm no expert, so I can't say whether this is true, much the less what the technical reasons why.
 

Joules

doom
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Which combo would give me better results, an R5 & RF 70-200mm cropped 50%, or a Nikon Z6II & TC 1.4x & Z 70-200mm f/2.8? With a hand on your heart, does the difference justify spending $1,450? Would you consider me a cynic for considering a switch to Nikon Z?
[...]
If you linked reviews comparing the EF version on a 5Ds to the RF on an R5 to show the new lens is twice as sharp, I would agree a 1.4x TC is redundant.
I do not care if or how cynical you are. I already apologized for the silliness that debating it has brought, please consider that the end of that exchange on my part.
Your choice of camera system or your reason for chosing it is nothing I have any right or interest in judging anyway. To answer anyway, no I would not consider you a cynic for considering a switch to any system. Properly evaluating and questioning the benefits proposed by manufacturers and to a degree existing customers is perfectly reasonable.

As for your example, I can't judge what better means for you. The images will be extremely similar as the reach is virtually the same and both sensors and lenses are nothing to sneeze at in this comparison. For specific measurements, you may find one combination ahead of the other of course. There are many factors to the shooting experience that go beyond the result and would go into my personal judgement on whether or not a price difference is justified. I'm not interested in either combination, so I can't justify going through the pros and cons of each.

I'm not linking any reviews or charts since it is not my intend to convince you of anything here. You initially seemed to me to ask what's up with the rear element, and all I did want to do is provide my understanding and a quote of what that is based on for you to consider.

Anyway, even if a comparison of the EF lens on a 5Ds and the RF lens on the R5 that illustrates the RF combination beeing twice as sharp, I don't follow you how that would make a TC redundant. Assuming you are equating sharpness to resoultion here, without a higher resolution (or pixel density) body available you could still benefit from a TC in order to increase reach (when using fast enough lenses, of course).
 
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Sludz

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Sep 16, 2020
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Blaaaarg. Even the shorter design is longer than the EF 100 with an adapter. it’s also 3/4” longer than the RF 70-200 2.8.
 

melgross

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Nov 2, 2016
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Blaaaarg. Even the shorter design is longer than the EF 100 with an adapter. it’s also 3/4” longer than the RF 70-200 2.8.
Well, maybe you read my post? It’s a more complex optical design. That takes room. All new lenses seem to be more complex than older designs. canon’s older 50 f1.2 lenses used to be 8 elements. Look at what they have now!
 

SwissFrank

from EOS 1N to R
Dec 9, 2018
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Of course it can, question is why. IIRC, it was explained that the closer the last element is to the sensor, the more vignetting the lens would have, due to the angle at which the light rays would hit the sensor.
It's not how close to the sensor the rear element is, but rather how close the light appears to be coming from. Think about it this way: take any lens with a back element far from the sensor. Now add a flat piece of glass just 10mm from the sensor. The light doesn't suddenly change direction and start attacking the corners of the sensor at an extreme angle giving cos^4 vignetting. It still strikes the sensor at practically the same angle as before. Now as you give that rear lens slight curvature, you might make that apparent, much farther, "exit pupil" nearer or farther, but it doesn't necessarily suddenly come back all the way to where that element is.
 

Tremotino

EOS 90D
Jan 23, 2018
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Of course it can, question is why. IIRC, it was explained that the closer the last element is to the sensor, the more vignetting the lens would have, due to the angle at which the light rays would hit the sensor.

That's NOT the case for Canon and Nikon.
But very likely for the small Sony mount since it's very tiny and lense elements at the back have to be smaller than the sensor...
 

Del Paso

M3 Singlestroke
Aug 9, 2018
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17 elements. I remember when a lens like this would have 5 or 6!
An intelligent lens-design isn't about "the more lenses, the better".
One of the very best macro lenses, the Leica M Macro Elmar 90mm f4, has only 4(!) lenses, and doesn't miss a single one.
I often use it with macro rings on my EOS R, and it beats,without discussion,the EF 100 L IS.
Of course, it's an f4 lens, without AF.
And what should I say about the Apo Macro Elmarit 2,8/100mm, 8 lenses, so sharp at any setting and aperture that it almost hurts?
 
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David - Sydney

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The current RF lenses have brought something new to the table vs their EF counterparts. Either short/light or outstanding quality and autofocus speed for the L lenses. The RF24-105mm is not quite in this class though. An interesting review of the different ~100mm macros at:
Given the quality of the Laowa macro, a new RF100mm should have >1:1 magnification, IS and lens coatings and it will regain its lead in the current market.
 
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