Canon FDn 200mm F/4 Macro

Macro lens • Pro • Film era • Discontinued


FD The lens is designed for Canon 35mm film SLR cameras with the Canon FD mount.
n (Unofficial acronym) A new generation of FD series lenses without the breech-lock ring.
MACRO Macro lens. Designed specially for shooting close-ups of small subjects but can be also used in other genres of photography, not necessarily requiring focusing at close distances. Learn more

Production details

Announced:April 1981
Production type:Mass production
Production status: Discontinued
Original name:CANON MACRO LENS FD 200mm 1:4
System:Canon FD (1971)

Features highlight

8 blades
Macro 1:1
Built-in hood


Optical design
Focal length:200mm
Maximum format:35mm full frame
Mount and Flange focal distance:Canon FD [42mm]
Diagonal angle of view:12.3°
Lens construction:9 elements - 6 groups
Diaphragm mechanism
Diaphragm type:Automatic
Aperture control:Aperture ring (Manual settings + Auto Exposure setting)
Number of blades:8 (eight)
Closest focusing distance:0.58m
Closest working distance:0.316m
Maximum magnification ratio:1:1 at the closest focusing distance
Focusing modes:Manual focus only
Manual focus control:Focusing ring
Physical characteristics
Maximum diameter x Length:⌀68.8×182.4mm
Filters:Screw-type 58mm
Lens hood:Built-in telescopic round
Teleconverters:Canon Extender FD 2X-A → 400mm F/8

*) Sources of data: Lens Wonderland. Canon FD lens guide book (PUB. C-IE-097AZ) ● Specifications of Canon New FD lenses (PUB. C-II-099B) ● Lens Work. The Canon guide to interchangeable lenses and Single Lens Reflex photography ● Canon AE-1 Program booklet (PUB. C-CE-124) ● Canon AL-1 Quick focus booklet (PUB. C-CE-135A) ● The New F-1 World booklet ● Canon FD lenses sales guide ● Canon Reflex 1981/1982 booklet.

Manufacturer description #1

The helicoid focusing barrel of this telephoto macro lens focuses continuously from infinity for general photography to a life-size image magnification ratio (1:1) without using any additional attachments. This long-awaited telephoto macro lens allows more working distance for increased flexibility when shooting close-up photographs. At a magnification factor of 0.5X a working distance (lens-front to subject) of 51.4cm is possible. The lens construction is 9 elements in 6 groups. Adoption of a unique focusing mechanism, using only the first and second groups, significantly suppresses aberration fluctuations caused by focusing. The result is crisp, sharp image reproduction over the entire focusing range. Thanks to the focusing system, front lens barrel extension is kept to a mere 38.6mm at life-size magnification for steady camera balance. Decrease in effective aperture is markedly low during close-up shooting. With larger effective apertures, the lens is especially useful for close-up photography under dim lighting conditions.

Manufacturer description #2

Truly unique, this lens can be used for normal telephoto applications, or can be instantly focused down to 58cm for 1x magnification without the use of an extension tube. Its optical system is corrected for maximum image sharpness and natural color reproduction, and the differential focusing system results in virtually no change in effective aperture value at close focusing distances. The extra "working space" it provides allows more light to reach the subject and is particularly valuable when shooting subjects likely to leave when approached too closely.

Manufacturer description #3

Macro lenses are made to be used at close focusing distances to obtain maximum magnification. When using these lenses, however, contradictory requirements sometimes emerge: You want to get as close as possible to the subject in order to gain maximum magnification, yet you also want to stay as far away as possible to ensure that the subject is not disturbed.

These are major issues when shooting an insect resting on a flower, for example. Approaching the subject is impractical and adequate lighting can become a problem. It is necessary to be far enough away from the subject that it is undisturbed and sufficient light falls on it. But the image size must also be magnified. The FD 200mm f/4 Macro is designed to satisfy these requirements.

Using the 200mm Macro, considerable lens-front-to-subject working distance can be maintained thanks to its longer focal length. At a working distance of 51.4cm, the 200mm Macro achieves a magnification of 0.5X. To obtain that same magnification the 50mm and 100mm Macros would have to move in to working distance of 10.5 and 26cm respectively.

Using the 200mm Macro for shooting agile small animals and insects, and the 50mm and 100mm Macros for flowers and other stationary subjects is an ideal way to use their respective advantages. However, the 200mm Macro has its own distinctive features. The 200mm Macro can focus from a life-size image magnification ratio (1:1) to infinity without any additional attachments. The 50mm and 100mm Macros, however, are only capable of shooting up to a magnification of 1:2 when no extension tubes are used. This convenient feature completely eliminates the need for attaching extension tubes which otherwise become necessary as the 1:2 magnification ratio is approached. Numbers indicating the magnification ratios are engraved in yellow on the lens barrel so it is easy to see where 1:2 and other magnifications are.

When using macro lenses with focal lengths as long as 200mm, lens barrel extension is usually increases when focusing subjects close up. The adoption of a two-group focusing system in our lens has reduced barrel extension to a minimum. The maximum extension is 38.6mm for recording images at life-size magnification. With the long 200mm focal length, the depth of field is extremely shallow, requiring careful attention to focusing and precautions against camera movement. Thus, the smaller the extension of the lens barrel and the less camera balance is upset, the better. With this camera, because focusing on subjects near at hand does not drastically change the amount of extension, stable camera balance is maintained. Even so, use of a cable release and a tripod is recommended whenever shooting close up with this lens. Hand-held photography may be possible with practice but an unstable camera will produce an unacceptably blurred image.

Manufacturer description #4

This new lens represents Canon's innovative answer to the problems of lens-to-subject distances in photomacrography. By using a longer focal length than conventional macro lenses, the same high magnification can be achieved with an increased distance between the lens and the subject. This added distance enables superior lighting positioning and control. In addition, it provides field photographers with the distance needed to work with live subjects, such as insects and birds, with less fear of frightening them away.

Because of Canon's unique optical design, two of the lens' six optical groups move. This results in the lens being able to be focused from infinity to a 1:1 magnification ratio without the need for an accessory extension tube. In addition, the design significantly reduces the distance the focusing riog must be rotated.

Highly versatile, the minimum aperture of f32 provides exceptional depth-of-field control even at high magnifications and the detachable tripod mount enables the user to change from vertical to horizontal composition without removing the camera from the tripod or refocusing. The lens is also excellent for all-purpose telephoto photography.

Typical application


Slow full-frame macro lens • Professional model

Professional model

  • Combination of focal length and closest focusing distance meets professional demands
  • Compatible with teleconverters

Genres or subjects of photography (3):

Macrophotography • Product photography • Distant landscapes with perspective compression effect

Adaptation to digital SLR cameras:

Not adaptableMore information

Not adaptable

In order to adapt the lens, the flange focal distance (FFD) of the lens mount must be equal to or greater than the FFD of the camera mount. This lens has the Canon FD mount with a FFD of 42mm. This is even shorter than the FFD of Canon EOS digital SLR cameras, which have the shortest FFD of 44mm of any modern digital SLR cameras. Therefore, this lens cannot be adapted to any digital SLR camera.

Recommended slowest shutter speed when shooting static subjects handheld:

1/200th of a second

Alternatives in the Canon FD system

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Lenses with similar focal length

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35mm full frame

43.27 24 36
  • Dimensions: 36 × 24mm
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Diagonal: 43.27mm
  • Area: 864mm2


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Image stabilizer

A technology used for reducing or even eliminating the effects of camera shake. Gyro sensors inside the lens detect camera shake and pass the data to a microcomputer. Then an image stabilization group of elements controlled by the microcomputer moves inside the lens and compensates camera shake in order to keep the image static on the imaging sensor or film.

The technology allows to increase the shutter speed by several stops and shoot handheld in such lighting conditions and at such focal lengths where without image stabilizer you have to use tripod, decrease the shutter speed and/or increase the ISO setting which can lead to blurry and noisy images.

Original name

Lens name as indicated on the lens barrel (usually on the front ring). With lenses from film era, may vary slightly from batch to batch.


Format refers to the shape and size of film or image sensor.

35mm is the common name of the 36x24mm film format or image sensor format. It has an aspect ratio of 3:2, and a diagonal measurement of approximately 43mm. The name originates with the total width of the 135 film which was the primary medium of the format prior to the invention of the full frame digital SLR. Historically the 35mm format was sometimes called small format to distinguish it from the medium and large formats.

APS-C is an image sensor format approximately equivalent in size to the film negatives of 25.1x16.7mm with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Medium format is a film format or image sensor format larger than 36x24mm (35mm) but smaller than 4x5in (large format).

Angle of view

Angle of view describes the angular extent of a given scene that is imaged by a camera. It is used interchangeably with the more general term field of view.

As the focal length changes, the angle of view also changes. The shorter the focal length (eg 18mm), the wider the angle of view. Conversely, the longer the focal length (eg 55mm), the smaller the angle of view.

A camera's angle of view depends not only on the lens, but also on the sensor. Imaging sensors are sometimes smaller than 35mm film frame, and this causes the lens to have a narrower angle of view than with 35mm film, by a certain factor for each sensor (called the crop factor).

This website does not use the angles of view provided by lens manufacturers, but calculates them automatically by the following formula: 114.6 * arctan (21.622 / CF * FL),


CF – crop-factor of a sensor,
FL – focal length of a lens.


A lens mount is an interface — mechanical and often also electrical — between a camera body and a lens.

A lens mount may be a screw-threaded type, a bayonet-type, or a breech-lock type. Modern camera lens mounts are of the bayonet type, because the bayonet mechanism precisely aligns mechanical and electrical features between lens and body, unlike screw-threaded mounts.

Lens mounts of competing manufacturers (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony etc.) are always incompatible. In addition to the mechanical and electrical interface variations, the flange focal distance can also be different.

The flange focal distance (FFD) is the distance from the mechanical rear end surface of the lens mount to the focal plane.

Lens construction

Lens construction – a specific arrangement of elements and groups that make up the optical design, including type and size of elements, type of used materials etc.

Element - an individual piece of glass which makes up one component of a photographic lens. Photographic lenses are nearly always built up of multiple such elements.

Group – a cemented together pieces of glass which form a single unit or an individual piece of glass. The advantage is that there is no glass-air surfaces between cemented together pieces of glass, which reduces reflections.

Focal length

The focal length is the factor that determines the size of the image reproduced on the focal plane, picture angle which covers the area of the subject to be photographed, depth of field, etc.


The largest opening or stop at which a lens can be used is referred to as the speed of the lens. The larger the maximum aperture is, the faster the lens is considered to be. Lenses that offer a large maximum aperture are commonly referred to as fast lenses, and lenses with smaller maximum aperture are regarded as slow.

In low-light situations, having a wider maximum aperture means that you can shoot at a faster shutter speed or work at a lower ISO, or both.

Closest focusing distance

The minimum distance from the focal plane (film or sensor) to the subject where the lens is still able to focus.

Closest working distance

The distance from the front edge of the lens to the subject at the maximum magnification.

Magnification ratio

Determines how large the subject will appear in the final image. For example, a magnification ratio of 1:1 means that the image of the subject formed on the film or sensor will be the same size as the subject in real life. For this reason, a 1:1 ratio is often called "life-size".

Manual diaphragm

The diaphragm must be stopped down manually by rotating the detent aperture ring.

Preset diaphragm

The lens has two rings, one is for pre-setting, while the other is for normal diaphragm adjustment. The first ring must be set at the desired aperture, the second ring then should be fully opened for focusing, and turned back for stop down to the pre-set value.

Semi-automatic diaphragm

The lens features spring mechanism in the diaphragm, triggered by the shutter release, which stops down the diaphragm to the pre-set value. The spring needs to be reset manually after each exposure to re-open diaphragm to its maximum value.

Automatic diaphragm

The camera automatically closes the diaphragm down during the shutter operation. On completion of the exposure, the diaphragm re-opens to its maximum value.

Fixed diaphragm

The aperture setting is fixed at F/4 on this lens, and cannot be adjusted.

Number of blades

As a general rule, the more blades that are used to create the aperture opening in the lens, the rounder the out-of-focus highlights will be.

Some lenses are designed with curved diaphragm blades, so the roundness of the aperture comes not from the number of blades, but from their shape. However, the fewer blades the diaphragm has, the more difficult it is to form a circle, regardless of rounded edges.

At maximum aperture, the opening will be circular regardless of the number of blades.


Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

Maximum diameter x Length

Excluding case or pouch, caps and other detachable accessories (lens hood, close-up adapter, tripod adapter etc.).

For lenses with collapsible design, the length is indicated for the working (retracted) state.

Weather sealing

A rubber material which is inserted in between each externally exposed part (manual focus and zoom rings, buttons, switch panels etc.) to ensure it is properly sealed against dust and moisture.

Lenses that accept front mounted filters typically do not have gaskets behind the filter mount. It is recommended to use a filter for complete weather resistance when desired.

Fluorine coating

Helps keep lenses clean by reducing the possibility of dust and dirt adhering to the lens and by facilitating cleaning should the need arise. Applied to the outer surface of the front and/or rear lens elements over multi-coatings.


Lens filters are accessories that can protect lenses from dirt and damage, enhance colors, minimize glare and reflections, and add creative effects to images.

Lens hood

A lens hood or lens shade is a device used on the end of a lens to block the sun or other light source in order to prevent glare and lens flare. Flare occurs when stray light strikes the front element of a lens and then bounces around within the lens. This stray light often comes from very bright light sources, such as the sun, bright studio lights, or a bright white background.

The geometry of the lens hood can vary from a plain cylindrical or conical section to a more complex shape, sometimes called a petal, tulip, or flower hood. This allows the lens hood to block stray light with the higher portions of the lens hood, while allowing more light into the corners of the image through the lowered portions of the hood.

Lens hoods are more prominent in long focus lenses because they have a smaller viewing angle than that of wide-angle lenses. For wide angle lenses, the length of the hood cannot be as long as those for telephoto lenses, as a longer hood would enter the wider field of view of the lens.

Lens hoods are often designed to fit onto the matching lens facing either forward, for normal use, or backwards, so that the hood may be stored with the lens without occupying much additional space. In addition, lens hoods can offer some degree of physical protection for the lens due to the hood extending farther than the lens itself.


Teleconverters increase the effective focal length of lenses. They also usually maintain the closest focusing distance of lenses, thus increasing the magnification significantly. A lens combined with a teleconverter is normally smaller, lighter and cheaper than a "direct" telephoto lens of the same focal length and speed.

Teleconverters are a convenient way of enhancing telephoto capability, but it comes at a cost − reduced maximum aperture. Also, since teleconverters magnify every detail in the image, they logically also magnify residual aberrations of the lens.

Lens caps

Scratched lens surfaces can spoil the definition and contrast of even the finest lenses. Lens covers are the best and most inexpensive protection available against dust, moisture and abrasion. Safeguard lens elements - both front and rear - whenever the lens is not in use.