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Keywords: Canon EF Mid Prime 35mm Tested


rogerfonts

Registered: May 2014
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by rogerfonts
Review Date: 6/12/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp, cheap, lightweight
Cons: Plasticky, sometimes misses focusing at 1.8, rounded shaped bokeh highlights only at 1.8

A great lens to start with. Sharpness and colors are excellent. My lens is sharp at the center even at 1.8 if you can nail the focus, although it does have some dreamy effect.


With an APS-C -if you have a full frame you will probably be able to afford the 1.4- the equivalent focal lenght is around 80 mm, which makes it perfect for portraits.


What bothers me about my copy is that focus sometimes misses target at 1.8; but for the price you can't complain. Sometimes I use 2.8 because focusing works much better -although is noisy and slow-, but then if you have highlights in the background they will appear as pentagons instead of nice circles, which is not so great.


Despite that, it is a little great lens and extremely cheap for what you got!


Some images:


http://www.rogerfonts.com/#/street?i=487
http://www.rogerfonts.com/#/retrato?i=541
http://www.rogerfonts.com/#/street?i=366
http://www.rogerfonts.com/#/retrato?i=346
lunacat

Registered: May 2014
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by lunacat
Review Date: 5/23/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Cheap, quality for price
Cons:

This lens was my first lens and I loved being able to use a low f-stop without having to pay an expensive lens. Therefore, this is really the lens I tell everyone to buy when they start out photography because it will be very useful to learn and see the big changes in the depth of field with the f-stop. Therefore, it is a good lens for people starting out photography. As I am now really into wedding photography, I upgraded to the 50mm 1.4 because of the added f-stop and the higher quality of built and its faster AF and better crispness. But if I had not gone into full time wedding photographer, I would have stuck to this lens because it is such a good value for its price and I love this focal length, either on APS-C or full frame.
Have a look at my wedding photographer website to see how I use this lens in wedding photography: http://www.lunacatstudio.ch/en/wedding-photographer-portfolio/
Gromit

Registered: June 2013
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Gromit
Review Date: 8/31/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fabulous IQ - ridiculously good for the money
Cons: Truly cheap build quality

I bought this as a used lens from my Canon dealer a couple of weeks ago, in preparation for our summer holiday and had just enough time to get a feel for it - both in the hand and for its performance - before we went away. Let's get the bad stuff out of the way first...


Build quality - it's very light, it rattles a bit, and feels like I could break it squeezing it in one hand. It doesn't always lock-on first time with focusing, USM lenses are better in this respect.


However...


Its image quality is beautiful - I've now started to realise why the pro's say that 'every Canon owner should have one in his/her bag'. It's soft at f1.8 and doesn't really start to sing until f2.8 but from then on it's a dream. Rich colours, and with pin-sharp resolution that even shades my 17-40L. Its compact size and low weight make my camera feel so much more wieldy too.


By far and away the best £60 I've ever spent on camera gear. I LOVE this lens.
dugong5pm

Registered: October 2012
Posts: 52
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by dugong5pm
Review Date: 6/3/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $60.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: IQ, sharp, lightweight, cheap!
Cons: build quality

one of the must-have lens for starters..


IQ is superb. it's super sharp, has a nice bokeh look, and comes in a compact-lightweight form. from price/performance perspective, it has no match. You can make professional-look images in less than $100.


The only complaint about this lens is the build quality. it's made of almost all-plastics and it feels like it's gonna break if you bang it once. heck, for the price, I'll get another copy when it breaks :D
AdamH

Registered: January 2013
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by AdamH
Review Date: 5/5/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $100.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Great Image Quality
Cons: Plastic Build

If you really need to justify this purchase, it's not for you. It's so cheap and the image quality is amazing.


Here is a time lapse I shot with it - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WwWQ1BmhSg
makcv113

Registered: August 2012
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by makcv113
Review Date: 10/21/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $70.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Cheap! Bokeh! Image Quality! Small! Fast!
Cons: Plastic build

*UPDATE* My latest music video was shot with the Canon 50mm 1.8 and Sigma 30mm 1.4. The 50mm was primarily used for closeup shots of the artist's face. Recorded with a Canon 60D at ISO 3200, this lens saved the night for sure! A keeper!
Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYTmwl3w_eE


Visit my FB page to get updates on new videos and specific gear used so you know how it was shot. Also feel free to ask questions about anything camera/video/photo related.
http://www.facebook.com/MAVPMedia
http://www.youtube.com/user/MAVPMedia


To make it short, get this lens! Especially as a beginner. It is cheap, and you get to experience why fast lenses are desired. You can't ask for much about this lens for the price. You get so much for the little you pay for. Ideally for crop, you would want something a 28mm or 35mm lens because mounting this 50mm on a 1.6 lens it performs like an 85mm lens on a full frame.


This is a good portrait lens. A good lens to make your subject stand out. Perfect lens for a beautiful blurry background (bokeh). An okay street lens because it is light and small. Average performance wide open at f1.8, my copy was the sharpest at f8.


Here are some samples with the lens taken on a Canon 60D:


http://flic.kr/s/aHsjEx3AtV (the majority is the Canon 50mm 1.8, but also includes the Sigma 30mm 1.4. The settings are viewable so you know what lens/settings are being used, but also the difference of the looks you could expect to get)


http://flic.kr/p/dzkosa
http://flic.kr/p/dzqTKG
http://flic.kr/p/dzkoqc


http://flic.kr/p/dz6zR2
http://flic.kr/p/dzc4uC


Here are some samples with the lens taken on a Canon 500D/T1i, I have a set with dedicated for the lens:


http://flic.kr/p/bk9mDX
http://flic.kr/p/bbz3b6
http://flic.kr/p/bbz36k


This Canon 50mm 1.8 is one of the lenses I used to shoot this music video since it was in low light and outdoors:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51nGTcTXC_Y
balajimd

Registered: October 2012
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by balajimd
Review Date: 10/12/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $100.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Awesome image quality
Cons: none

Just attached this to a basic Eos 1100d and the image quality is...superlative. As mentioned by many, this is not for anyone expecting the bells and whistles of expensive zoom lenses. But, the image quality just blew me away! Candid shots - whether it is portrait or landscape. I still cannot believe the sharpness of this little lens - sharp as a razor. I just don't care about the AF or Plastic feel - its better not to fret about these little things when the lens performs like a gem! I disagree with people trying to treat this as a disposable lens - if a good copy falls into your hand, I think you need to preserve that carefully. A ten or twenty times costlier lens may or may not give this same output!!
kruprathai

Registered: May 2012
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by kruprathai
Review Date: 5/29/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 0 

 
Pros: The lens offers an excellent color balance
Cons:

Lightweight and affordable, the Canon EF 50mm lens--which offers a fast f/1.8 aperture--is an excellent lens for people who prefer a fixed focal length. Canon's lightest EF lens at a mere 4.6 ounces, the lens boasts a traditional Gauss-type optical design that delivers a sharp performance even when wide open. As a result, the lens provides an image that's extremely close to how your eye perceives a subject, making it excellent for portraits and images that require a natural depth of field. In addition, the lens focuses as close as 18 inches, helping you take extreme close-ups. Finally, the lens offers an excellent color balance. As with all Canon lenses, the lens carries a one-year warranty. * Focal length: 50mm * Maximum aperture: 1:1.8 * Lens construction: 6 elements in 5 groups * Diagonal angle of view: 46 degrees * Focus adjustment: Overall linear extension system with Micromotor * Closest focusing distance: 1.5 feet * Filter size: 52mm * Dimensions: 2.7 inches in diameter, 1.6 inches long * Weight: 4.6 ounces.


++PLUS++ Deluxe Accessory Kit: 3 pc Filter Kit: UV/ Polarizing filter/Fluorescent correction & Case - Protective Lens Pouch with Drawstring Closure - Cap Keeper Front Lens Cap Leash - Lens Pen Cleaning Tool - Advanced Micro Fiber Cleaning Cloth.


More Detail : http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000TFTGE2/tipfla-20


More Review : http://canonslr.babybi.com/detail.php?id_detail=Canon-EF-50mm-f-1-8-II-Camera-Autofocus-Lens---Deluxe-Accessory-Kit-[Camera]-id106
Apricane

Registered: November 2011
Posts: 6
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Apricane
Review Date: 11/4/2011 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $105.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, Very Sharp Images with Superb Colors
Cons: Rough Bokeh, Noisy & Slow AF, Short (See Review)

Overall, the lens provides very good IQ - pics that are sharp and have very good colour - for quite a low price for the quality. It's actually a no-brainer that someone who shoots Canon should have this in their toolkit, especially as it provides an excellent intro to prime lens.


This is not to say that the lens doesn't have its shortcomings. Its AF is rather slow and noisy (not that much of a problem in most situations, but it does limit the lens' versatility). It is also quite short, sometimes making it difficult to hold my camera (500D) steady; this is compounded by a rather wide focus ring.


Moreover, the lens produces a bokeh that can be rather rough and sometimes more pronounced than one could really want, although I can see how this could be used for artistic purposes.
shroud72

Registered: September 2011
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by shroud72
Review Date: 9/28/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $99.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: inexpensive optics are worth twice the price, fast lens excels in low light, colors are better then kit lens, sharp
Cons: cheap plastic feel, manual focus ring difficult to use because it is small, fragile lens

This lens has been recommended by many people to a beginner photographer as the first lens after the kit lens.
I´ve had this lens for over a year now and have had sort of a love / hate relationship with it.
The cheap plastic feel and the almost impossible to turn manual focus ring are the main reasons for my dislike for this lens.
It does make a great portrait lens and after some practice you will be taking much better portrait shots with this lens then with the kit lens.
However where this lens really excels, and the reason why this small lens always has a place in my photography bag is because it is really incredible in low light night photography.
I normally shoot this lens at f/2.0 as I find f/1.8 a bit soft but still somewhat acceptable when needed in a pinch. Shooting at f/2.0 in AV aperture mode with 800 ISO produces amazing night time results with my 450d/XSi.


Here are some night shot samples
http://flic.kr/p/aqsjEF
http://flic.kr/p/ag8UCp
http://flic.kr/p/apYE3n
http://flic.kr/p/a6N1YZ
http://flic.kr/p/a6MTcF


This shot has been cropped by about 75% and still the results are acceptable
http://flic.kr/p/agknfj


Bokeh shot
http://flic.kr/p/aniSPo


Nature Panoramic shot
http://flic.kr/p/agxiqP


Portrait shots
http://flic.kr/p/akdFKd
http://flic.kr/p/afgs1G


Shot through a restaurant window
http://flic.kr/p/agQvgt


Handheld 4 shot panoramic at dusk
http://flic.kr/p/agTqC1



Overall Opinion: Although the build quality leaves much to be desired, I have not experienced that many Autofocus problems, even in low light and have gotten photos that I would have otherwised missed.
For a beginner photographer on a budget highly recommended performance for the price. Overall rating is image quality based on price.
kaci

Registered: April 2011
Posts: 10
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by kaci
Review Date: 4/15/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $160.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: sharpness, colours, contrast, size and weight, price
Cons: nothing

I have been using this lens for 4 years and still love it! Great on APS-C, great on FF. At f1.8 not really sharp, but beautiful atmosphere for portraits, from 2.8 like a razor. AF is accurate, but little bit slower. I had a Sigma 50/1.4 for two months but finally I sold it and kept this small gem. Super lens for weddings, portraits, general purposes. Absolutely recommended!!!
Sanjeed

Registered: January 2011
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Sanjeed
Review Date: 2/27/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $114.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Image quality, Lightweight, Affordable
Cons: Little noisy while focusing, Looks unglamorous

Canon is an expert when it comes to springing up surprises. It builds some outstanding quality lenses while running an unnecessary mad pixel race in their bodies.


Now I can safely talk about the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II as I’ve used it substantially. This is the gem of a portrait lens. It can capture the tiniest details with lovely colors to the level unimaginable by photography until now. I don't know much about other brands as I have not used them however, I did use Sigma 50mm f/1.4 lens together with Canon. The Canon simply puts the Sigma to extreme shame in performance. Sigma misfocused on most of the occasions whereas Canon nailed all perfectly and brought up all the minutest details not visible to human eyes. I don't care about the build quality and looks as that would unnecessarily push prices up.


This is a dream portrait lens and Canon shooters must have it in their arsenal. Ignore all the negative remarks about its looks; rest assured your main objective that is the results will look outstanding.
redvsion

Registered: August 2010
Posts: 4
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by redvsion
Review Date: 1/26/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Image quality, cost
Cons: Build quality, slow/noisy AF

There seems to be some contention on this lens's image quality. I must have an exceptional copy, because it has bested many, many other lenses I've owned in this department, and this is at all apertures. It's criminal how close it comes to my 200mm f/2.8L. I mean that.


The autofocus is very slow and brutally loud, and the build is awful if you've owned any other lens (if it's your first, you won't mind), though it is nice to have a usable piece of glass that's so light. The worst thing about it is that despite its problems, the image quality and price are so good it's hard to justify paying more for the 50mm f/1.4 USM.


If you're a beginning photographer and shoot Canon, you have to get one. It's mandatory.
ron_miller

Registered: December 2010
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by ron_miller
Review Date: 12/4/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $96.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Light, Small and Good IQ for price
Cons: Construction quality and noisy during focus.

Although soft at F1.8 until less than F2.8, i cannot complain because this lens is a bargain. But it produces very good enlargements at smaller apertures (F2.8 and beyond).
On a Canon 7D, this makes a good portrait lens.
DollyDaydream

Registered: November 2010
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by DollyDaydream
Review Date: 11/13/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $150.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent optical quality, light, lets in a lot of light, simple to use, great bokeh and depth of field
Cons: Nothing!

I bought this lens, mainly because I just bought a new camera, with a 135mm 2.8 soft focus lens (for portraits) but decided the minimum focus was just too far away - researching the 50mm 1.8, I decided to try it out and I loved it! In fact, it's better than the 135mm 2.8, in so many different ways. It lets in a lot of light with the 1.8 max aperture, it can focus easily to close subjects, it has an AMAZING optical quality for such a little thing. The best thing is the price, I can't believe how cheap it is! I definitely prefer prime lenses to zooms now, due to the sharpness. This will be my portrait lens AND landscape, macro, standard etc etc.


Thank you Canon for making such a perfect lens. My next buy will surely be the 50mm 1.4 (although I have heard it isn't much of an upgrade).
Judicious

Registered: November 2010
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Judicious
Review Date: 11/1/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $125.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Price, Great starter lense, light
Cons: Has trouble focusing in low light, manual focus ring is too small

This is my first prime lense I picked up because the price is very cheap. The lense also feels a bit cheap when you first pick it up. With this being my first prime, I can't really compare it to many others but for it being my first I have enjoyed it so far. Pretty much a lot of what is said in previous reviews is true.


The AF can really go haywire in lowlight. The focus is loud especially when it's having a hard time focusing. For manual focus, it is tough to find the focusing ring and feels very loose.


It's very light, but feels really cheap with a plastic toy sort of feel.


Overall when you work in good light, the AF is pretty fast. Image quality is pretty decent.


If you don't have a prime lense in your bag and you want to try out a faster lense, I would definitely recommend this one. It's price can't be beat as far as the quality goes.
ssj_george

Registered: June 2010
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by ssj_george
Review Date: 6/15/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: light, excellent price, compact, excellent optical quality
Cons: plastic and cheap construction, a bit soft wide open

This lens is probably the best bargain for its image capabilities. Relative to the money you spend, image quality is excellent. You may want to shoot at f/2.8 for sharper images (but when f/1.8 is needed the lens isn't at all bad).


Here I will describe some weak points and may seem that they are a lot, but I really believe that when someone doesn't want to spend more on such a lens this is the perfect lens to get.


The weak points:
1. Plastic feel, manual focusing ring not the best. This does not affect performance so if you are cool with that (I am) that is fine!
2. Autofocus may be slow when lighting is bad. This poses some problems. The best thing to do in these situations is turn on the MF mode and manual focus the lens...
steveygti

Registered: May 2010
Posts: 7
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by steveygti
Review Date: 6/8/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $95.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Excellent bokah, sharp images, cheap price
Cons: very loud AF, cheap build quality

This lens is perhaps one of the best image producing lens for its price. It produces sharp images and wonderful bokeh. The sweet spot for this lens on my T2i is f/2.8 and the images are pretty sharp. Wide open, the images are a bit soft. However, they are almost as sharp as my images from my Canon 85mm prime lens. This focal length is perfect for portraits and works wonderful producing bokeh. Remember that 50mm used was the standard focal length back in the day in which manufacturer's evaluated slr cameras.
Many people complain about the cheap build qualityfor this lens. It does feel cheap and light in your hands and it sounds cheap when it operates. It does look like it came out of a Cracker Jack Box. Remember, It is only $100.. and excellent for the aspiring and amateur photographers. Just take really good of this lens and dont throw it around in your bag; It should last you years and years.
TheK

Registered: March 2010
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by TheK
Review Date: 3/12/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $140.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: price
Cons: AF

The cheapest way to make portraits and to get used with a fixed focal lens. Quality is great, as long as you don't dare to go below f/2.0 (which is only very slightly darker than 1.8, so no real loss).


The AF should be renamed to "AntiFocus" - if light is bad, you might guess better by hand. Things seam to get better around and above f/4.
SETI

Registered: April 2007
Posts: 20
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by SETI
Review Date: 1/27/2010 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $120.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap
Cons: all other

It's not bad bayonet cover, but I had never see more harsh images from other primes.
CyranoB

Registered: November 2009
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by CyranoB
Review Date: 11/9/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $150.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: IQ for the price
Cons: AF, build quality

Let's face it for this price you won't get a better portrait lens. It's a must have for any photography starters on a budget. It'll allow you to take pictures you just cannot take with your standard kit or even most zoom lenses.
Got it for a year, once I got more serious about my new hobby I updated it for the 1.4 model, sold it for the price I bought it.


It's very cheaply built, doesn't always focus correctly, and manual focus is more or less useless, so anybody who's got some extra hundreds in his pocket is better of going directly for the 1.4 version directly. But still a nice starter lens to fall in love for prime lenses.


Some examples:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/eddie_pick/3578779708/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/eddie_pick/2778382587/
Chazz D

Registered: October 2009
Posts: 4
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Chazz D
Review Date: 10/4/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $50.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Sharp lens for the money, Small, Lightweight
Cons: not very sharp below f2.0, cheap build quality, poor bokeh (background blur)

The good:


This has got to be the best bang for the buck of any lens Canon makes.


If you learn how to use this lens to get the best out of it it will give you some stunningly sharp images for the price.


It is super light, and small, I think the lightest lens that Canon makes so its easy to take along with you.


The bad:


My copy of this lens is not very sharp below F2.0 ( I have read that some are better than others so its luck of the draw i guess).


Not great for low light conditions, focus hunts around quite a bit and with no IS you are better off looking at other lenses if you are wanting a great lens for indoor low light unless you are planning on using a tripod.


Bokeh or (background blur) this is one spot that is fairly annoying since it would not have cost Canon much more to use rounded aperture blades which would have at least helped. But with this lens you often see the hexagons in the background and its not often nice and soft. so you have to be careful with this. I am sure they really just want to sell there more expensive versions of the 50mm primes.
Phr34ker

Registered: August 2009
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Phr34ker
Review Date: 8/12/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $70.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Insane resolution, great images, beats all my other lenses (even L-lenses)
Cons: Manual focusing almost impossible

I've tried a number of primes and L-zooms, but none of them has been able to outresolve this bad boy.
This is the only lens I've tested that manages to outresolve the 450D-sensor and give perfect per-pixel-sharpness at f/3.2 or higher.
At f/1.8 it's a bit soft - especially around the edges. But for me, that softness generally isn't a bad thing. Instead it softens up the DOF so you don't get that hard in-focus-out-of-focus-line, and for some reason images taken with this optic at f/1.8 tend to become realy esthetically pleasing.


Example of f/1.8 (to show the beautiful soft DOF):
http://www.henricrosvall.se/media.php?itemID=4540


Example of f/3.2 (to show the sharpness, click on "Original bild" just below the picture and start pixel peeping):
http://www.henricrosvall.se/media.php?itemID=4565
swamijie

Registered: April 2009
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by swamijie
Review Date: 4/27/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $89.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: excellent low light IQ, price, fast 1.8, sharp, pleasing portraits, bokeh
Cons: soft corners at 1.8, must work for best low light shots, low light AF can be inaccurate

Great bargain! Sharp portraits wide open with really good background blur and pleasing bokeh. This lens stays on pretty much all the time on my Rebel XSi (450D) and I managed to get some really beautiful shots of my (then newborn, now infant) daughter. There were a lot of shots that had to be thrown away, as you really should have a good understanding of the lens' characteristics and lighting and other photography related skills, but, it was a learning process and the pictures that I did keep were satisfying because of the work I put in and the stunning image quality. Portraits do need to stay towards the center unless you're going for a slight softening, blurry effect in the sides of the frame on purpose (trust me, it still doesn't really come out all that nice!). Pro: really light; Con: Really Light! almost flimsy feeling; but at that price with the portraits you can get out of this thing...
Bee

Registered: April 2009
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Bee
Review Date: 4/21/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $100.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price, Image Quality
Cons: Well, with this price?

When I tried to write the cons for this lens, I stopped and could not force myself to write anything. As most of the others wrote, this lens has a very slow AF, AF motor is very noisy and there is no usable focus ring on it. I sometimes feel it may break to pieces when it tries to focus!
However, I try to be fair. This is the least expensive lens in Canon family. It is a 1.8 lens and it is very sharp if you step it down to F4 and up. It is a very good portrait lens on an APS digital SLR.
It is very light and you can put it in your pocket.
It looks like a toy, feels like a toy and sound like a toy, but wait till you see the results and you will realize you've got good glass for every penny you've spent.
If you are going to make a living out of a 50mm lens, get the L version, but if you are a hobbyist or you just want to experiment, you will not regret buying this lens.
This is the "nifty fifty", and I love it!!
For a sample photo, check:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/baabak/2407923340/
WiSaGaN

Registered: March 2009
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by WiSaGaN
Review Date: 4/4/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price
Cons: Build Quality

The previous one has some issues. I've got them fixed. Now it's fine.
Nikoboyd

Registered: March 2009
Posts: 12
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Nikoboyd
Review Date: 3/31/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $117.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Price, Decent optics
Cons: Cheap material

I owned this lens for 2 years. Excellent optics. Extremely sharp from f/4-8.


Actually, I don't want to complain anything about this lens. It's so cheap that I can complain nothing.
MY

Registered: December 2008
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by MY
Review Date: 12/30/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: IQ, cost
Cons: Autofocus issues, craftmanship

OK, that's my fastest lens. And the cheapest. However it has one trick in it's sleeve and it keeps me coming back to it: IQ. When focuses (most of the time) it provides great detail, crystal image and unmatched for this price low light shooting. Using it with Canon 5D was a shock. No flash was needed most of the time. With the 40D it made me realize that focusing is a bit of an issue. Mostly in low light situations. In bright daylight all is razor sharp.
photonut

Registered: November 2008
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by photonut
Review Date: 11/15/2008 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $100.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: cheap, light, bright, sharp when stopped down
Cons: useless focus ring, poor AF

This lens is a great value because of its price and its amazing sharpness once stopped down a little. I wouldn't recommend it as a first prime on a 1.6x body because it is quite long and focus is plain crap. Unless you can't afford anything else of course.


So yeah, the manual focus "ring" (if you can call it that) is very hard to operate because it's tiny, poorly located and offers almost no resistance. It can still be used but it's definitely not fun and I often wish I had gotten the f/1.4 for that reason alone.


Autofocus does not seem very accurate and will miss significantly every now and then. On the other hand, mine is not noisy at all. It's definitely quieter than my 35mm f/2 and not much noisier than the 17-85 USM. The plastic mount feels cheap but is not a problem in practice given how light the lens is.


I've taken a few interesting shots with this lens but still wish I had had the option of paying 50% more for a decent focus ring. I don't use it very much and will probably replace it someday.
runvs

Registered: November 2008
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by runvs
Review Date: 11/2/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $82.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: IQ, Inexpensive, Light weight
Cons: none

I'd had this lens for about a month on my XSi. It's IQ is amazingly sharp and renders colors just right. People complain about the build quality; its just fine. It might not ever leave the camera.
266

Registered: July 2008
Posts: 4
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by 266
Review Date: 10/4/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $81.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, very fast aperture
Cons: Quality, both image and construction

At the end of the day, I have to say: wow! I mean, you paid the price for perhaps 10 food court lunch and you get thie mid-distant lens with f/1.8 aperture, and I have to say the quality comparing to the price, it's quite worth it. The only thing I might be complaining about is the corners, they're like darker than ever from the center on my cropped frame body, and the plastic feeling of the lens is definately worse than my two EF-Ses.


So, the verdict would be that if you need a fast aperture lens with a very tight budget to fight, then yeah, go for it, but just don't expect much, despite its low, low price.
twmagoo

Registered: December 2007
Posts: 4
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by twmagoo
Review Date: 6/7/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $85.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: IQ, decent AF speed, PRICE
Cons: pretty cheap feeling AF switch and body

The IQ is really good. Everything else works really well and for under a 100.00 US, I'm not going to complain about the build.
sflorio

Registered: June 2008
Posts: 7
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by sflorio
Review Date: 6/6/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $89.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Very sharp, when done right
Cons: Focus is unreliable, unless...

I have to agree with many of the people here who brought up focus problems. I am new to DSLRs but have been taking digital pics for several years with good cameras, and never had this much problem getting an in-focus shot. It probably is low light most of the time, but I found a workaround, although it takes longer to achieve: My new Canon xSi has the option to use Live Mode focus during live view on the LCD, and I get far superior focus this way which no doubt allows the lens to achieve its full potential. Using live focus, I can see every brick in the highrise maybe 1000 feet outside of my window, but the shot I took with standard focus was noticeably fuzzier. And many of the first shots I took at dusk yesterday, were horribly blurry even though I did everything right. I'd have gotten better results with my point and shoot.
I was thinking of returning this lens, but now that I know I can get razor sharp shots even in very low light using Live View, I'll probably keep it as something to experiment with to get the full potential of my great new camera at a low cost.
PsiBurn

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by PsiBurn
Review Date: 5/8/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: great IQ, light, cheap, good in low light [when it isn't having fits]
Cons: cheap build, terrible AF speed, prone to AF fits, 5 blades = bad bokeh

This lens has taught me how to shoot properly. Granted, it feels cheap, it focuses poorly many times, the bokeh is whack at small apertures, there is no denying the fact that there is a reason why people swear by primes.


If you've read my reviews, I'm an uber-zoom freak. I bought the 50 1.8 just for fun. Then, slowly, my zoom lenses started dying on me: first my 17-85, then my 17-55. I was pretty much left w/ the 50 and a Tamron 28-75 [until I got my Canon 70-200 f/2.8].


Using the 50 extensively for the past 6 months now, I can confidently say that I truly LOVE this lens, despite its many annoying quirks. Like my Tamron, there's no escaping it's excellent IQ, it's atrocious AF speed, it's cheap build, and it's lovable factor that just seems to grow on you [for me at least].


Perhaps an upgrade is in the order, but first, I must absorb the 70-200 hit I took :-).
Toco1980

Registered: May 2007
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Toco1980
Review Date: 3/22/2008 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 4 

 
Pros: price, image quality
Cons: construction quality, AF problems

Bought it for portrait work a few months ago, but it soon started having focusing problems, especially in low light conditions.


Thiking of switching to EF 50mm f/1.4 USM or EF 85mm f/1.8 USM
tempest68

Registered: March 2008
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by tempest68
Review Date: 3/7/2008 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $89.00| Rating: 2 

 
Pros: none
Cons: poor AF indoors, focus ring too small, cheap build quality

I bought this lens based on an almost unanimous recommendation on every forum that "you have to have this one, especially with the low price". I was very disappointed with this product, and subsequently sold it for $40.00.


For indoor shots, it never seemed to want to autofocus. So when you give up on the autofocus, you find the manual focus ring is just too small (and cheap feeling) to actually use effectively. Manual focus ring seemed sloppy, almost loose.


In the many months that I owned this lens, I bet I only put it on the camera 10-15 times at most. My only other lenses at the time were the 18-55mm "kit" lens and the 75-300mm f4-5.6 III. To me, even the kit lens seemed to have better optics, focusing, etc.


I guess it might be possible that I got a bad copy, but I expected so much more from this lens based on other folks positive to almost glaring reviews. If you really want a 50mm prime, I would suspect spending an extra couple hundred on the other 50mm lenses from Canon might be a better purchase (although I have no first-hand experience with the other 50mm's).
Alex2008

Registered: January 2008
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Alex2008
Review Date: 1/31/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 10 

 
Pros:
Cons:

I bought the lens because of the rave reviews and it does not disappoint. The lens is very light and does feel plastiky but that doesn't matter. I use it much more often than my 28-135mm for my kids. For the price, you can't go wrong.
hitendra

Registered: February 2007
Posts: 11
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by hitendra
Review Date: 1/19/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $110.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Best value for money.
Cons: All plastic built.

Check IQ here…
http://www.hitendrasinkar.com/photoblog/index.php?x=browse&category=33&pagenum=1
Nilangsu

Registered: November 2007
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Nilangsu
Review Date: 11/2/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $95.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fantastic sharpness at smaller apertures, low price, great value for money
Cons: AF seems uncertain at low light

The 50/1.8 II is a great value-for-money lens, the best deal with Canon at the moment. I've using it for 5 years now, intially with the EOS film Rebel ( the famous Rebel 2000) and now with 350D. Because it effectively becomes a 80 mm lens on the 350D, it's not that practical a lens for my needs, but I still use it.


Its best qualities are remarkable contrast, and sharpness. Both suffer at higher apertures,though. AF appears hesitant in low light (no USM), but then again, when it focuses, it will be right on the money. The bokeh has been said to be poor, which, some say, makes it a not-so-good portrait lens despite the convenient 80 mm focal length. I think that's unjust. I have shot many good portrait shots with it (with heartwarming praise from those shot), and any other lens other than L zooms falls flat in comparison.


Buy this lens, and use it as a short telephoto or a portrait lens at 2.8 and above. Highly recommended.
lextalionis

Registered: October 2007
Posts: 82
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by lextalionis
Review Date: 10/30/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap, small and compact, better than the stock 18-55 zoom.
Cons: The bokeh is harsh and the build quality is very low

Sample Shots Taken with a Canon XTi


I feel this is a fine lens to buy and try because of its low price. I had the lens for 6 months before just giving it away. I did enjoy using the lens, but soon found that I wanted more edge-to-edge sharpness and better bokeh at low stops.


Having only 6 aperture blades mades the bokeh (background blurring) highlights harsh...you can actually count the sides of the highlights.


-Lex
kamundse

Registered: July 2007
Posts: 2
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by kamundse
Review Date: 9/11/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $74.95| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: cheap, great images
Cons: could be more durable

At this price, this lens is a no brainer... just get it. It takes great portraits, it is small and light so you won't mind bringing it along on a shoot. Yes, it is plastic and could be made better. Unless you routinely bang your camera around or drop your camera bag, you'll probably be ok.
photosynth

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by photosynth
Review Date: 6/10/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $75.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: price, sharpness at f5.6-f8, 1.8 max aperture
Cons: poor bokeh, cheap construction

This lens is a great value because of its low cost and excellent sharpness at f8. Great for portraits on a 1.6x body, or for still life.
The main downside for me is that when used open to get background separation or because of low light, bokeh is very poor.. don't know how to describe it... it has a chunky appearance rather than being smooth.
At f1.8, depth of field is also less than the autofocus precision of 1.6x Canon bodies, and maybe my lens is slightly front-focusing... the result is that about 50% of the shots at f1.8 are from slightly to more substantially out of focus (especially in low light situations, and almost always with focus in front of the subject for my copy). AF is ok at f4 or up.
Despite these issues and the cheap construction, I think this lens is great if you plan to use it at f5.6-f8, hence my recommendation. Very sharp.
anrieff

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by anrieff
Review Date: 3/4/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, Good IQ, works well in low-light
Cons: AF problems, awful build quality

There is a hype around 50mm lenses. They are the classic and put a retro touch on your pictures...


... or at least, when used on full frame cameras. On 1.6 crop, this becomes an inconvenient lens: too short for tele, too long for a walkaround. Too long for group photos. Excellent for portraiture, though.


As any Canon shooter, I purchased this lens early on and is now collecting dust on the shelf. The reasons for not using it are mainly technical, and may relate my copy only, but:


* Constant problems with AF. My copy chronically front-focuses by a measurable margin. The simplest test - shooting my LCD monitor - results in a fuzzy image. If shot by focusing manually, you can see the individual LCD pixels clearly - the image is just WOW - very sharp;
* The already mentioned rarely-usable focal length;
* There seem to be some defects on the front glass of my copy. A few specks, that look like a lack of coating. Or a smallish crater on the glass. It does not spoil images normally, but manifests itself in the bokeh - as specks on the out-of-focus highlights.
See this sample: http://debian.fmi.uni-sofia.bg/~group6_2008/lens/50mmf18/bad_bokeh_sample.jpg
* While not really a problem, I'd like more focus ring travel.


In conclusion - if you like the "classic" 50mm look on a crop dSLR - look at the 28-35mm range. The 35mm f/2 is certainly not a bad choice. If you need 50mm exactly, go for the 50mm f/1.4 - that's a good lens, albeit not usable until f/2.


Why I gave it an YES after all? This lens is damn cheap. You can't go wrong buying it, and if you've only used the 18-55mm kit, you'd certainly FEEL the IQ difference. Just hope your copy is not bad as mine Smile


Test images: http://debian.fmi.uni-sofia.bg/~group6_2008/lens/50mmf18/
DaveJDSP

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by DaveJDSP
Review Date: 2/22/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $75.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: If you're a photographer, this may be the best lens of all time.
Cons: For the gadgeteer and equipment collector, this is not your lens.

I am hypercritical about equipment and especially lenses, as they determine my entire income. This lens has superb image quality at 5.6-16, and even very good at 22! If you are a snob about image quality, this is your lens. If you are a snob about things that don't matter, this lens is NOT for you. It is fantastic from 5.6-16, VERY low CA, is very lightweight, feels cheap, sounds cheap. The absolute ideal lens. One of Canon's all-time best lenses. And disposable to boot! (You may want to test a few to be sure to get a good copy.)
Shaithis

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 1
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Shaithis
Review Date: 1/15/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $69.99| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Price, f1.8, Tack Sharp at lower stops
Cons: Plastic, Soft f1.8, Front Focusing Issues

I've heard this is "The" lens to have, and I was looking for a fast lens, so I bought it after weeks of research. Really is a great lens for the price though. The f1.8 is a little soft, and I'm having some front focusing issues. I'm going to send it back and get a new one that will hopefully fix it.


The plastic construcion is VERY cheap, of course you only paid $70.00 for it, so what did you expect.


At f5.6 it has been tack sharp. I'm using on a Rebel XT and must say I enjoy it. Here's one of my shots using the 50mm lens at f6.3, hand held, laying on the ground at 1/125 exposure.


http://www.betterphoto.com/gallery/dynoGallDetail.asp?photoID=3271475&catID=&style=&rowNumber=1&memberID=155659
fergusonjr

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 15
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by fergusonjr
Review Date: 1/15/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $75.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Very cheap. Very light. Above average sharpness above f/2.8
Cons: Plastic Plastic Plastic. Feels like you only paid $75 for it.

Given the price, there's really no good reason not to buy this lens. The price is so low, it's one of those lenses you go ahead and buy just for the heck of it. I already had the 50mm f/1.4 when I decided to buy this one for that very reason -- just for the heck of it. Given the choice between the two, there's really no question that I prefer to use the f/1.4 lens, but if you're trying to be frugal and aren't sure you want to pay the extra for the f/1.4 lens, the f/1.8 will not disappoint when it comes to overall image quality.


Certainly, this lens has its limitations. If you like to use shallow depths of field with nice background blur (bokeh), this isn't the best lens for that. I found the bokeh to be somewhat messy and lacking in smoothness when compared to the 1.4 and especially the 1.2 lens. While its autofocus is relatively speedy, it doesn't feel as fast as the 1.4 lens in part because it's substantially noisier -- you're made much more aware of it focusing. The front focus ring has a very small grip-width and feels chintzy, but probably not as bad as the EF-S 18-55mm lens. Also, if I was interchanging this lens a lot with other lenses, I would be worried about the long-term wear on the plastic mount. But, hey, who cares . . . it's only $75! This is a real bargain, and a great buy for the frugal shopper or someone looking for a decent backup to their wider-aperture 50mm lenses.
thf

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by thf
Review Date: 1/14/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $130.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: cheap and very light!, sharp (stopped down)
Cons: soft at f1.8

Very sharp when stopped down, soft at f1.8, much better at f2.5 and excellent over f4. Good for portraits on a 1.6 crop camera. I have been impressed with results.


AF is not fast and motor is rather loud but at this price it's hard to fault... I missed focus quite often when used in continuous AF with a model walking towards me -> switch to one shot AF and shoot fast!


Get one! You will not regret it.
ckhorne

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by ckhorne
Review Date: 1/14/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $69.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap, decent quality, relatively large apeture
Cons: Poor build construction

This lens fills a very specific need - a 50mm "portrait" lens with a relatively large apeture. The build quailty isn't all that great, but it is lightweight and does the job decently well. For the price, it's really hard to match.


If you're looking at getting a body + kit lens, I'd highly recommend saving your money and just getting the body + this lens for the same price.
MJG

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by MJG
Review Date: 1/14/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Excellent image quality when stopped down; bright when wide open; light
Cons: Noisy and and somewhat slow AF

This lens is a no brainer. It's cheap, and stopped down (2.2 or so) the image quality is excellent. At 1.8 it's still OK, and together with the ISO setting of a DSLR it's perfect for available light photography. With the 1.6 crop factor of most Canon DSLR it's more like an 80mm lens, and as such a perfect portrait lens, or a normal lens for the tele inclined.
The build is cheap but OK. Autofocus is not USM and this shows. Speed is OK since it's a small lens, but's not as quiet as the USM type. Sounds more like a Sigma lens Wink
Since it's so lightweight it makes for a great macro dioper when reverse mounted in front of another lens, but better check to make sure the image circle is wide enough for the other lens. Reverse mounting directly gives you another good cheap macro option, although it's more difficult to handle (no AF, no automatic aperture).
lajos

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 7
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by lajos
Review Date: 1/14/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: size, no weight at all; sharp as a Swiss knife; great bokeh
Cons: feels like it's made of paper

Considering the price, this lens is a must. My 350D with this lens attached is smaller and lighter than many of the more serious compact digicams. Fantastic sharpness and bokeh. Great for portraits. It's also flimsy and too light but I don't care.
notpaul

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 3
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by notpaul
Review Date: 1/13/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $65.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, sharp, light, compact.
Cons: Tinker Toy construction, slow and noisy focus

This was the first lens to go on my Nikon N80. Just holding it in the store made me queasy – it’s built like a BigMeal toy. But what it does, it does very well. It’s fast, sharp, and small. On the N80 it makes a very tidy, go anywhere kit. And it’s so cheap, there’s no reason not to have one. On a reduced frame camera it makes a nice available light portrait lens.
AlainD

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by AlainD
Review Date: 1/12/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $70.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: cheap cheap cheap - at $65 what can I say. Fun to play for DOF, low light
Cons: none at that price. But check your copy for front/back focusing issues

was told this was a must have given the price, and sure is. Even though I have a sigma 18-200 on my Xt most of the time, I always take this little gem in case I need low light shooting. Granted I don't use it much...
jdf

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 8
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by jdf
Review Date: 1/12/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $129.34| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Excellent image quality
Cons: Very poor construction

This was my very first lens, I was a little (very) disapointed with it's construction but i was amazed at it's excellent image quality.


The AF is a little sloppy, and not precise, even on a 30D, at 1.8 it has some CA and very vignetting!


The bokeh it somewhat harsh but you can live with that.


It's point of maximum shapness begins at 5.6.


Overall a very good start lens.
nrshapiro

Registered: December 2005
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by nrshapiro
Review Date: 1/9/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Small, Light, Sharp, F1.8 and inexpensive
Cons: No USM, focus ring is small

This is a good lens overall with nice bokeh.


My only gripes are with the slow and noisy focus, and the size and feel of the focus ring when you are manually focusing.


Other than that, I really don't find this focal length as useful as I thought it would be. As an F1.8 lens, I thought it would be great indoors, but it's really to long for that on a 1.6x crop camera. Next time I would buy a 20mm or 24mm lens with the widest aperture I could.


Of course, at almost 80mm equivalent on a 1.6 crop camera, it's probably a pretty nice portrait lens, but I don't do many portraits!
random

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 10
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by random
Review Date: 1/8/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $102.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Most affordable low-light prime lens, sharpness from around f/2.5-f/8, price/performance ratio, very light
Cons: Not as sharp & poor contrast wide open compared to stopped-down, all-plastic body down to the lens mount, very narrow focusing ring

Bought this lens after using the kit lens for some time, so I could appreciate the difference in sharpness & IQ. I suggest not using this lens wide-open unless you're using it in poor available lighting (when there is no other way to take the shot without using the flash) because it's soft & lacks contrast at f/1.8-f/2.0. It noticeably improves around f/2.5 & continues to improve until around f/8. f/5.6 seems to be the sweet spot in my personal experience.


Build quality-wise, it's true what they say, you get what you pay for: it feels cheap. The plastic body & lens mount means it can't stand much rigorous use. The focusing ring, which is very narrow and located at the very front of the barrel, is almost unusable.


Don't bother protecting the front element with a filter, a cheap uncoated one would just degrade your images while expensive ones aren't worth it considering the price of this lens. If it gets damaged beyond repair, just buy a new one.


AF speed is so-so, not ring USM-fast, but not slow either, which is to be expected since this lens uses a conventional micro-motor. It's not silent either. The good news is that it doesn't tend to focus-hunt in poor light as much as the kit lens, probably because of the wider maximum aperture.


Overall, this is very much recommended considering this is the best bang-for-the-buck Canon lens. It delivers images that are sharper than some of the several-times-more expensive zooms at comparable apertures. It provides more background blur for portraits than even the fastest zooms (although the bokeh is rather nasty due to the 5-bladed aperture). The next step up from this lens, the 50mm f/1.4 USM version, costs 4-5x more than this one.


P.S. Get the now-discontinued 50mm f/1.8 Mk.I if you can. It has a better build quality (metal barrel & lens mount), wider focusing ring, distance scale and slightly-better image quality.
DimLight

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 7
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by DimLight
Review Date: 1/8/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $130.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Lightweight, very sharp if used properly
Cons: Unusable ad f/1.8, slow focus

Before deciding to buy this lens there are two things that you definitely have to consider.


First, forget the 1.8 advertised maximum aperture, or you'll risk serious disappointment. Pictrues taken at f/1.8 are totally useless, unless rescaled to something like VGA resolution. Also, at that aperture the out-of-focus highlights feature a very distracting thin, greenish ring.


Second, my (objectionable) opinion is that the usefulness of this lens is somewhat limited on a 1.6 crop body. 50mm is neither wide enough to capture buildings or monuments, nor long enough to shoot details.


However, if you keep the above limitations in mind this lens can be more than satisfactory. From about f/2.8 onwards it begins to take exceptionally sharp pictures. Colors are accurate and pleasant, geometries almost perfect. Use it as a portrait lens at f/4 and you'll be pleasantly surprised. Once you get used to its limitations, this inexpensive lens can outperform all but the most expensive zooms when it comes to image quality.


Yes, the autofocus is slow and noisy (it lacks any form of USM) and it feels like a toy, expecially when mounted on 350D, which too is quite toyish. But it is a 100$ lens, you can't have both cool features and good IQ for that price.


Overall, I think that this lens does perfectly the job that Canon intended for it: a compact, inexpensive lens to introduce novice users to the beauty of primes. If you are new to primes you should consider it seriously. If this is not you first prime maybe you'll want to consider something else.
Lee Jay

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 16
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Lee Jay
Review Date: 1/7/2007 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $80.00| Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Fast, small, cheap
Cons: So-so optics, horrible build quality

The build quality on this lens is just horrible. But it's still useful if you need a fast lens in this range. The AF is pretty bad too.
yuj

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 5
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by yuj
Review Date: 1/7/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $85.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Cheap, great picture quality for the price, large aperture
Cons: Cheap, MF ring rotates during focusing, 1.5ft closest focus distance

All in all, this is an exceptional lens in many ways. The constant f/1.8 aperture on a crop body makes it a fast portrait lens, but it could still benefit from some additional magnification. Of course, I shouldn't be complaining since this is neither a macro lens nor very expensive in the first place. The quality of this lens really shines when stopped down to f/2.8 and beyond. The focus is noisy but it's still very fast. This is one lens every canon photographer should have on hand.
adobo

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 17
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by adobo
Review Date: 1/6/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $79.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Cheap, Small, Sharp, Good for Beginners
Cons: Cheap Construction (But you won't really notice coz of the size)

Ok, before anything we need to be fair to the price range of the lens..


Most of the people here are complaning against the cheap build, the so-so focus ring, etc.


But first of all, you won't be manual focusing most of the time because of the.. umm.. not quite sure what to call it.. "short focus twist"... to change focus from the closest to infinity takes only about a half turn so its quite hard to focus accurately especially when wide open..


Sharpness is VERY good (just good luck on focusing properly, use the center) and I would recommend this lens if you're a beginner and don't have that much experience with photography.. don't be a gearhead.. use this and your kit lens first to learn what you need and want... besides, IQ isn't everything.. so what if you an L lens if you don't even know how to compose a good image?


Btw stop it down for better image (like 2.8, and try to keep it there)
Wolfini

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 10
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by Wolfini
Review Date: 1/5/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: light weight, small, cheap, optical performance stopped down
Cons: IQ wide open, AF

I got this lens in a kit together with a used D30 I bought some years ago.


This is not my favourite lens for several reasons:
- on crop I personally don´t like the focal length very much
- my copy is quite weak wide open, I have to stop down to f2,2 for accetable and f2,8 for good results. From f4 it´s really very good.


AF performance on my old D30 was hit and miss, on my new 30d it´s much better.


Still, I can recommend this lens to anyone who is looking for a cheap, light weight lens mainly for outdoor use stopped down or for low light use when needed.
crmorse

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 11
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by crmorse
Review Date: 1/5/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $60.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very fast, cheap, light weight, sharp stopped down
Cons: cheap construction

I love to use this lens wide open at ISO 1600 as I can actually shoot (and get AF) by candlelight. I find it's also a good lens for night sky although the AF won't work anymore.


Pros:
* Tac sharp stopped down 2-3 stops
* Very fast wide open that gives a very shallow depth of field
* Unbelievably cheap


Cons:
* Cheap construction although it does make it very light. Given the price this really isn't a problem because replacement is a non-issue.
* Focusing ring is too small making manual focus very difficult
* Quite soft at the corners when wide open.
silverbluemx

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 16
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by silverbluemx
Review Date: 1/4/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Inexpensible, light, small, very sharp stopped down, center sharpness wide open enough for portraits.
Cons: Poor build quality, average AF, very bad corners wide open.

This is the lens that brought be in the world of primes.
Compared to the kit zoom, its wide aperture allows for wonderful low light shots and DOF control.
Beeing quite soft wide open (especially in the corners, but it may not be a big problem for portrait shoots with the subject in the center) it becomes really sharp over 2.8, and incredibly sharp over 5.6.
On a DSLR its equivalent focal length isnt sometimes wide enough, but quite useful for close portraits.
The only drawback is the really poor build quality : plastic mount, small autofocus ring... It really gives the feeling of a cheap lens.
Anyway, it's the most wonderful cheap lens ever!
samo

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 4
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by samo
Review Date: 1/1/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $120.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Light, fast, sharp and cheap.
Cons: Construction as cheap as it is.

Very fast, very sharp, inexpensive (around 120 here in Mexico) and small prime. A definitely must have for every Canon shooter. Mounted in my XT, it becomes a very unintrusive combination, just bigger than a high end P&S. On my 5d, it shows it's flaws, specially on the borders of the frame, but stopped down to 2.8, it's a really good performer.
_Mike_D

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 12
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II review by _Mike_D
Review Date: 1/1/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $90.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap, Sharp when stopped down
Cons: Wish it would focus a /little/ closer, soft wide open

Hard to beat for $90.


The lens is very nice if you stop down to f/2.8 or so, and makes for a great portrait lens.


My only complaint is that I always seem to want to get an inch or two closer to my subject than the lens will allow.


Great cheap lens for night photography
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