Last Updated on 08/16/2019 by Mark Beckenbach
The crazy Canon 50-82mm F1.1 would probably make your credit card melt if you were to consider buying it.
While it took Canon a while to fully embrace Mirrorless cameras and lenses, we can’t say that they aren’t trying to catch up with Sony and other manufacturers when it comes to the technology. Since the launch of the EOS R, Canon has released some fantastic lenses for the RF mount. The Canon RF 50mm f1.2 and the RF 24-105mm, for example, are based on their very popular EF mount cousins. They are quite excellent, but a recent patent shows that Canon is thinking outside the box when it comes to lens design. The patent is for a crazy RF 50-82mm f1.1 behemoth that would undoubtedly turn heads. Join us after the break for more details about this insane lens.
A recent post at Canon Watch shows the diagram from a patent that Canon has filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office on August 8th, 2019. The lens in question is an RF Mount 50-82mm f1.1 monster. Let us be clear here, this is just a patent filing and not an announcement of an actual lens. Just because engineers have been drinking crazy sauce and came up with the Canon 50-82mm f1.1 lens doesn’t not mean it will see the outside of a development lab any time soon.
In all honesty, we would have to say the Canon 50-82mm f1.1 lens is likely nothing more than a pipe dream. It does show Canon truly is thinking out of the box when it comes to lens design, and that is encouraging. We often think of Canon as not being innovators these days, but this filing shows they aren’t scared to think about something new when it comes to lenses.
So what would hold this lens back? There are a few reasons why we think this will stay as a diagram for the foreseeable future. The first is cost. The amount of money it must have taken for research and development (even to this point) must have been tremendous. Fast aperture primes are one thing, but constant f1.1 zoom lenses are another thing entirely. That in itself will equate to it having an astronomically high shelf price. The number of photographers who would be able to afford (and make back the cost) of a lens like this would be small. Chances are they wouldn’t break even on a lens like this for a very long time. The RF 50mm f1.2L is here now, and it already costs a cool $2,299. A zoom lens with a constant f1.1 aperture will be markedly more expensive for photographers to buy.
Secondly, the size and weight of such a lens will be a significant drawback. To some that won’t be an issue, but my goodness, Mirrorless lenses are already comically huge and bulky. The Canon 50-82mm f1.1 would likely one-up current lenses in this regard. The Canon EOS R is an excellent camera, but a lens like this would be far better suited to a high Megapixel camera. Perhaps if the often talked about 70+ Megapixel Canon EOS R were to appear, the Canon 50-82mm f1.1 might not seem so far fetched.
Don’t get us wrong, we love the idea of a fixed f1.1 aperture zoom lens. It would be unprecedented and groundbreaking, much like the Sigma 18-35mm f1.8 was when it was released a few years ago, but we think this lens won’t see daylight for quite a while yet. What do you think about the crazy Canon 50-82mm f1.1 lens that is listed on the patent? Let us know in the comment section below.