Canon RF 85mm F/2 Macro IS STM

Macro lens • Digital era

RF The lens is designed for Canon EOS R digital mirrorless cameras.
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.
IS The lens is equipped with Image Stabilizer.
STM The lens is equipped with Stepping Motor.

Canon EOS R

35mm AF digital mirrorless camera

Announced:September 2018
Mount:Canon RF
Format:36 × 24mm
Resolution:6720 × 4480 - 30 MP
Sensor type:CMOS
Image stabilizer:-

Canon EOS RP

35mm AF digital mirrorless camera

Announced:February 2019
Mount:Canon RF
Format:35.9 × 24mm
Resolution:6240 × 4160 - 26 MP
Sensor type:CMOS
Image stabilizer:-

Canon EOS R5

35mm AF digital mirrorless camera

Announced:July 2020
Mount:Canon RF
Format:36 × 24mm
Resolution:8192 × 5464 - 45 MP
Sensor type:CMOS
Image stabilizer:Yes

Canon EOS R6

35mm AF digital mirrorless camera

Announced:July 2020
Mount:Canon RF
Format:36 × 24mm
Resolution:5472 × 3648 - 20 MP
Sensor type:CMOS
Image stabilizer:Yes

Canon EOS R3

35mm AF digital mirrorless camera

Announced:September 2021
Mount:Canon RF
Format:36 × 24mm
Resolution:6000 × 4000 - 24 MP
Sensor type:CMOS
Image stabilizer:Yes

Designed for

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Features highlight

Fast
1 UD
9 blades
Macro 1:2
STM
Focus limiter
IS 5 stops
IS Mode 1
Hybrid IS
Panning det.

Specification

Production details
Announced:July 2020
Production status:In production
Production type:Mass production
Original name:CANON LENS RF 85mm F2 MACRO IS STM
Optical design
Focal length:85mm
Speed:F/2
Maximum format:35mm full frame
Mount:Canon RF
Diagonal angle of view:28.5° (35mm full frame)
Lens construction:12 elements - 11 groups
1 UD
Diaphragm mechanism
Number of blades:9
Focusing
Closest focusing distance:0.35m
Closest working distance:0.21m
Maximum magnification ratio:1:2 at the closest focusing distance
Focusing method:<No information>
Focusing modes:Autofocus, manual focus
Manual focus control:Focusing ring
Autofocus motor:Stepping motor (Lead screw-type)
Focus mode selector:AF/MF
Full-Time Manual Focus (FTM):Determined by the camera
Focusing distance range limiter:FULL;0.35-0.5;0.5-
Image Stabilizer (IS)
Built-in IS:Yes
IS features:Mode 1
Panning Detection
Hybrid IS
IS efficiency:up to 5 stops
Physical characteristics
Weight:500g
Maximum diameter x Length:⌀78×90.5mm
Weather sealing:-
Fluorine coating:-
Accessories
Filters:Screw-type 67mm
Lens hood:Bayonet-type ET-77 (round)

Manufacturer description

The RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM medium telephoto lens expands on the versatility of bright, macro, IS equipped prime lenses built for the EOS R system. With a focal length of 85 millimeters and a bright, maximum aperture of f/2 for beautiful bokeh, this versatile lens is a great choice for portraits and street photography, as well as low light scenes or during concerts, and with the addition of macro capability, even close-up and macro photography will provide stellar results. The RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM is a light weight, affordable lens that boasts high image quality and an impressive optical image stabilization system offering up to 5 stops of shake correction ideal for low-light scenes or when recording video, and featuring Hybrid IS enables stabilization when focusing on macro, close-range subjects. Like the RF35mm F1.8 Macro IS USM, it also includes half-size macro functionality allowing for a minimum focusing distance as close as 1.15ft. With a built-in customizable control ring and a fast 12-pin communication system, the RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM is an ideal travel companion for your portrait, macro, low-light, and video needs.

Bright f/2.0 lens — combined with the full-frame sensor of an EOS R series camera — delivers exceptional low-light performance and beautiful background blur.

With its impressive 1.15 ft. minimum focusing distance, the RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM lens is designed for working up-close and personal with subjects to document even the most minute of details. And because it has a maximum magnification of 0.5x, you can even experience close-up 1:2 half life-size macro photography so you can capturea variety of macro subjects with stunning results.

The RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM lens is designed to work in conjunction with EOS R series cameras, with both the camera and the lens sharing data to dramatically reduce camera-shake blur, regardless of the situation, whether shooting video or stills. With up to 5 stops of stabilization, it delivers impressively clear results.

Hybrid IS provides an incredibly effective and steadying influence on your close-up stills and video content creation. It provides up-to 3-stops of Hybrid Optical Image Stabilization to compensate for both angular and shift-type camera shake that may occur during macro shooting, allowing image-makers with EOS R series cameras to capture impressively precise detail wherever they are.

The RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM lens incorporates a control ring on the lens barrel that can directly adjust numerous settings including shutter speed, aperture, ISO, exposure compensation and more. Located towards the front of the lens it effectively adds a third dial to EOS R and RP cameras, and a fourth dial to EOS R5 and R6 cameras. With a tactile, easily distinguished surface and a clicking mechanism that provides tangible feedback for confident use while looking through the viewfinder, the control ring adds outstanding connection to any shooting scenario. For photographers and movie makers who would prefer a silent control ring, the clicking mechanism can be removed at a Canon Factory Service Center location for a fee.

Designed to quickly communicate shooting data, the RF85mm F2 Macro IS STM features the 12 pin communication system inherent in all RF lenses. This helps coordinate complex processes requiring high-speed communication and large data transfer, such as fast AF response with broader AF area, Image Stabilization, the Digital Lens Optimizer, and even the adjustment of the customizable Lens Control Ring for a quick and efficient user experience.

Thanks to its 9-blade, circular aperture, the RF85mm F2 Macro IS STMis capable of gorgeous, evocative out-of-focus areas and soft backgrounds. With an incredible level of control over background blur, the 9-blade circular aperture helps create intimacy and intensity in both photos and videos for impactful results.

Typical application

portraits, travel, macrophotography and product photography

Slowest shutter speed when shooting handheld

IS OFF11/21/41/81/151/301/601/1001/1251/2501/5001/1000+
IS ON11/21/41/81/151/301/601/1001/1251/2501/5001/1000+

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35mm full frame

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

Travellers' choice

Note

Among autofocus lenses designed for 35mm full-frame mirrorless cameras only. Speed of standard and telephoto lenses is taken into account.

One of the best short telephoto macro primes

According to lens-db.com; among lenses designed for the same maximum format and mount.

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Quality control issues

The manufacturer of this lens does not provide adequate quality control. If you do decide to purchase this lens, do not order it online, but choose the best copy available in the store. In any case, there may also be problems with the build quality, and warranty repairs can take months.

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.

Stepping motor (Lead screw-type)

Simple direct drive mechanism to realize truly silent and smooth autofocus during video recording. Too large to fit inside compact prime lenses.

Focusing distance range limiter

The lens features focusing distance range limiter which allows to choose between the following focusing distance ranges:

FULLFull range of focusing distances.
0.35m - 0.5mRange of focusing distances suitable for shooting nearby subjects.
0.5m - ∞Range of focusing distances suitable for shooting distant subjects.

By setting the suitable focusing distance range, the actual autofocusing time can be shorter.

AF/MF

AFAutofocus mode.
MFManual focus mode.

Aspherical elements

Aspherical elements (ASPH, XA, XGM) are used in wide-angle lenses for correction of distortion and in large-aperture lenses for correction of spherical aberration, astigmatism and coma, thus ensuring excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture. The effect of the aspherical element is determined by its position within the optical formula: the more the aspherical element moves away from the aperture stop, the more it influences distortion; close to the aperture stop it can be particularly used to correct spherical aberration. Aspherical element can substitute one or several regular spherical elements to achieve similar or better optical results, which allows to develop more compact and lightweight lenses.

Use of aspherical elements has its downsides: it leads to non-uniform rendering of out-of-focus highlights. This effect usually appears as "onion-like" texture of concentric rings or "wooly-like" texture and is caused by very slight defects in the surface of aspherical element. It is difficult to predict such effect, but usually it occurs when the highlights are small enough and far enough out of focus.

Low dispersion elements

Low dispersion elements (ED, LD, SD, UD etc) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture. This type of glass exhibits low refractive index, low dispersion, and exceptional partial dispersion characteristics compared to standard optical glass. Two lenses made of low dispersion glass offer almost the same performance as one fluorite lens.

Low dispersion elements

Low dispersion elements (ED, LD, SD, UD etc) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture. This type of glass exhibits low refractive index, low dispersion, and exceptional partial dispersion characteristics compared to standard optical glass. Two lenses made of low dispersion glass offer almost the same performance as one fluorite lens.

Canon's Super UD, Nikon's Super ED, Pentax' Super ED, Sigma's FLD ("F" Low Dispersion), Sony' Super ED and Tamron's XLD glasses are the highest level low dispersion glasses available with extremely high light transmission. These optical glasses have a performance equal to fluorite glass.

High-refraction low-dispersion elements

High-refraction low-dispersion elements (HLD) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture.

High Index, High Dispersion elements

High Index, High Dispersion elements (HID) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture.

Anomalous partial dispersion elements

Anomalous partial dispersion elements (AD) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture.

Fluorite elements

Synthetic fluorite elements (FL) minimize chromatic aberrations and ensure excellent sharpness and contrast even at fully open aperture. Compared with optical glass, fluorite lenses have a considerably lower refraction index, low dispersion and extraordinary partial dispersion, and high transmission of infrared and ultraviolet light. They are also significantly lighter than optical glass.

According to Nikon, fluorite easily cracks and is sensitive to temperature changes that can adversely affect focusing by altering the lens' refractive index. To avoid this, Canon, as the manufacturer most widely using fluorite in its telephoto lenses, never uses fluorite in the front and rear lens elements, and the white coating is applied to the lens barrels to reflect light and prevent the lens from overheating.

Short-wavelength refractive elements

High and specialized-dispersion elements (SR) refract light with wavelengths shorter than that of blue to achieve highly precise chromatic aberration compensation. This technology also results in smaller and lighter lenses.

Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics

Organic Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics material (BR Optics) placed between convex and concave elements made from conventional optical glass provides more efficient correction of longitudinal chromatic aberrations in comparison with conventional technology.

Diffraction elements

Diffraction elements (DO, PF) cancel chromatic aberrations at various wavelengths. This technology results in smaller and lighter lenses in comparison with traditional designs with no compromise in image quality.

High refractive index elements

High refractive index elements (HR, HRI, XR etc) minimize field curvature and spherical aberration. High refractive index element can substitute one or several regular elements to achieve similar or better optical results, which allows to develop more compact and lightweight lenses.

Apodization element

Apodization element (APD) is in fact a radial gradient filter. It practically does not change the characteristics of light beam passing through its central part but absorbs the light at the periphery. It sort of softens the edges of the aperture making the transition from foreground to background zone very smooth and results in very attractive, natural looking and silky smooth bokeh.

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

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),

where:

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

Mount

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 from the lens mount to the film or sensor can also be different.

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.

Flange focal distance

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

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.

Speed

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 focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Manual focus override in autofocus mode

Allows to perform final focusing manually after the camera has locked the focus automatically. Note that you don't have to switch camera and/or lens to manual focus mode.

Electronic manual focus override is performed in the following way: half-press the shutter button, wait until the camera has finished the autofocusing and then focus manually without releasing the shutter button using the focusing ring.

Electromagnetic diaphragm control system

Provides highly accurate diaphragm control and stable auto exposure performance during continuous shooting.

Convex protruding front element

The convex front element protrudes from the lens barrel, making it impossible to use filters.

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.

Weight

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.

Filters

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.

Efficiency of image stabilizer

The efficiency of image stabilizer is measured in stops and each stop corresponds to a two-times increase of shutter speed. For example, if you are shooting at focal length of 80mm and it is known that the efficiency of image stabilizer is 3 stops, it means that during handheld shooting at such focal length you can use shutter speed of 1/10 second which is exactly 23 times longer than the shutter speed 1/80 second needed to obtain sharp image in sufficient lighting conditions.

Hybrid IS

The image stabilizer has Hybrid IS technology which corrects not only angle but also shift camera shake, which is more pronounced in close-range shooting when a camera moves parallel to the imaging scene. Hybrid IS dramatically enhances the effects of image stabilization during shooting, including macro shooting, which had proven difficult for conventional image stabilization technologies.

XY-Shift

The image stabilizer has XY-Shift technology which corrects not only angle but also shift camera shake, which is more pronounced in close-range shooting when a camera moves parallel to the imaging scene. XY-Shift dramatically enhances the effects of image stabilization during shooting, including macro shooting, which had proven difficult for conventional image stabilization technologies.

Dynamic IS

The image stabilizer has Dynamic IS technology which especially effective when shooting while walking because it compensates strong camera shake. Dynamic IS activates automatically when the camera is set to movie shooting.

Mode 1

Corrects vertical and horizontal camera shake. Mainly effective for shooting still subjects.

Mode 2

Corrects vertical camera shake during following shots in a horizontal direction. Corrects horizontal camera shake during following shots in a vertical direction.

Mode 2

Corrects vertical camera shake during following shots in a horizontal direction.

Mode 2 (Intelligent OS)

The lens incorporates Intelligent OS with algorithm capable of panning in all directions. In Mode 2, the movements of subjects can be captured with panning effects even when the camera is moved horizontally, vertically, or diagonally — regardless of the position of the lens.

Mode 3

Corrects camera shake only during exposure. During panning shots, corrects camera shake during exposure only in one direction the same as Mode 2. Effective for following fast and irregulary moving subjects.

Panning Detection

The image stabilizer automatically detects panning and then corrects camera shake only in one direction.

Tripod Detection

It is often thought that image blur caused by camera shake can be prevented by using a tripod. Actually, however, even using a tripod may result in image blur because of tripod vibration caused by mirror or shutter movement at the time of exposure. The image stabilizer automatically differentiates the frequency of the vibration from that of camera shake, and changes algorithm to correct image blur caused by slight tripod vibration.

VR NORMAL

Corrects vertical and horizontal camera shake. Automatically detects panning and then corrects camera shake only in one direction.

VR ACTIVE

Corrects vertical and horizontal camera shake when shooting from a moving vehicle, or some other unstable position. Panning is not detected.

VR SPORT

Allows a continuous shooting frame rate and release time lag similar to those that are possible when image stabilizer is turned off. Automatically detects panning and then corrects camera shake only in one direction.

VR TRIPOD

It is often thought that image blur caused by camera shake can be prevented by using a tripod. Actually, however, even using a tripod may result in image blur because of tripod vibration caused by mirror or shutter movement at the time of exposure. The image stabilizer automatically differentiates the frequency of the vibration from that of camera shake, and changes algorithm to correct image blur caused by slight tripod vibration.