The Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 is a small, super-light, 2x general-use zoom lens for Canon’s RF mount. Specifically, the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 is an affordable alternative to existing kit lenses such as the Canon RF 24-105mm F4-6.7 and the premium Canon RF 24-105mm F4L.
So, is the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 cheap-and-cheerful or just plain cheap? Jump to Conclusion
Buy a Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3
Table of Contents
- What is the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3
- Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 Specificatations
- Who is Canon RF 24-50mm for?
What is the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3
The Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 is an affordable, small, and lightweight everyday-zoom lens for Canon’s RF mount.
With a focal length ranging from 24 to 50mm, the Canon RF 24-50mm will serve your camera’s full-frame sensor with any angle of view between 84 and 46 degrees. As a result, the RF 24-50mm will be equally at home shooting landscapes, portraits, and much in-between. Read What is Focal Length in Photography.
Alternatively, you can twist the Canon 24-50mm onto one of Canon’s APS-C-based RF cameras, such as the Canon R50, yielding a supremely less helpful angle of view between 58 and 28.8 degrees which Canon suggests is beneficial for Portraits. However…
The Canon RF 24-50mm is a variable aperture lens. This means the lens begins at its brightest F4.5 aperture at 24mm before shrinking to F6.3 at 50mm. Read What is Aperture in Photography.
As a result, the Canon RF 24-50mm is both small and light and no less effective for general photography in good light. However, F4.5 is not that bright, to begin with, and F6.3 is half-as-bright again. This means two things.
First, you will depend more on high-image-degrading ISOs when shooting moving subjects with fast shutter speeds or taking photos in poor light. And second, you’ll be less able to blur your subject’s background – severely limiting the Canon RF 24-50mm’s credentials as a portrait lens.
The Canon RF 24-50mm has a minimum focus distance of 35 centimeters enabling a maximum magnification of 0.19x. This is hardly surprising for a lens of this class and makes the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 a poor choice for taking large photos of smaller things.
The Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 has in-built optical image stabilization and is rated to provide up to 4.5 stops worth of stabilization. This is good news for taking sharp hand-held shots and smooth video in poor light. Read Stops in Photography Explained.
Furthermore, the image stabilization will sometimes compensate for the RF 24-50mm’s slower aperture and flatter the Canon R8 – a camera with no in-built sensor-based image stabilization.
Despite its low price, the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 features image stabilization and a customizable control ring to which you can assign shutter speed, ISO, and exposure compensation. A switch on the side enables you to restore the control ring to manual focus.
Overall, the Canon RF 24-50mm is generously equipped for a lens with such a modest price tag. Well done, Canon!
Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 Specificatations
|Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3|
|Angle of view||84-46 Degrees|
|Lens construction||8 Elements in 8 Groups|
|Optical Image Stabilization||Up to 4.5 Stops|
|Minimum focus distance||30cm/24mm 35cm/50mm|
|Maximum reproduction ratio||0.11 @ 24mm 0.19x @ 50mm|
|Dimensions (approx)||2.7″ x 3.7 – 5.3″|
Who is Canon RF 24-50mm for?
The Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 is ideal if you are looking for an affordable and lightweight Full-Frame camera system. And the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 with a camera such as the Canon RP or R8 is certainly that.
But what sense does it make to hide a large, bright, high-performance sensor behind a small, dark, and cheap lens? After all, image quality is the only reason you might tolerate the price and bulk of a Full Frame camera system.
Thus, if you want to combine great image quality and a low price tag – I’d be far more likely to explore Micro Four Thirds-based cameras such as the OM-5 and Panasonic G9, or the APS-C-based Fuji’s X-S10 and Canon’s R50 and R10.
But if you are hell-bent on an affordable and compact Full-Frame system – you can have it both ways; specifically, you skip the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 and buy a Canon RF 50mm F1.8 instead.
Not only is the Canon 50mm F1.8 optically superior, but its large F1.8 aperture passes up to 12 times more light and will melt backgrounds to oblivion. In other words, the Canon 50mm F1.8 will unlock the benefits of your full-frame camera in ways that the Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 never will.
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The Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3 is a consumer paradox. In isolation, the Canon RF 24-50mm is a compact and useful lens – armed with generous features and a bargain price.
But to become such a lens, the Canon RF 24-50mm is compromised in ways that will undermine the Full-Frame camera you attach it to. Specifically, you’ll miss out on optimum image quality and creamy background blur – the only reason I ever tolerated my Full Frame camera.
Thus, if the Canon RF 24-50mm is good enough for your needs, you might as well save more money and bulk and choose an APS-C or Micro Four-Thirds camera instead.
Buy a Canon RF 24-50mm F4.5-6.3