Camera Hacker

Some thoughts on the Canon 50mm f/1.8 II lens

The value of this lens is exceptional. At $80 from B&H, it is one of the cheapest lenses available. In fact, I don't recall any lens cheaper than this lens for the Canon EOS cameras. This lens is very light weight and is made out of plastic. It is also very small.

The image quality of this lens is also excellent when stopped down. It performs fair when wide open. However, I wish it is the other way around, because I use this lens in low-light situation extensively. In fact, I can say I use this lens almost all the time at night. During day time, I prefer to use my zooms, so this lens became less useful.

The auto-focus mechanism on this lens is based on Canon's micro motor. It is noisy and doesn't sound very smooth. In low-light and low-contract situation, it tends to hunt and fail to lock. Again, since I use this lens for low-light situation, this tendency really bothers me.

Unlike my other Canon AF lens, the AF switch on this lens is rather hard to push. Sometimes it feels like it is stuck. Hopefully, this is an isolated case.

A nice thing about this cheap lens is that it has a non-rotating front. I don't find this feature in many low-price lenses. The front filter thread takes 52mm filters.

Since this lens is so small and so light-weight. I can easily carry this lens with me everywhere. I wish Canon would make a version of this lens with a quieter motor.

Comments & Discussion >>

Some photos made with this lens

Angelo and Eve
- Canon Rebel G, Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, Ilford HP5 Plus.

daffodils - existing light
- Canon IX, Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, Fuji SmartFilm 100 APS.

daffodil stems
- Canon Rebel G, Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, Kodak Gold 100.

- Canon Rebel G, Canon 50mm f/1.8 II.

Marc and Jason
- Canon Rebel G, Canon 50mm f/1.8 II, Tiffen Circular Polarizer.

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