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Compatability and Sensible Distinction • PhotoTraces

Do you wish to know the distinction between Canon EF vs EF-S lenses?

This could be a complicated matter, particularly for
photographers who’ve solely simply bought a Canon DSLR.

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses

That’s why we’ve put collectively this
information–which is able to inform you the whole lot you’ll want to find out about EF lenses, EF-S
lenses, and the variations between them.

By the point you’ve completed, you’ll know
whether or not an EF or an EF-S lens is best for you.

Understanding Lens Mounts

First issues first:

If you wish to perceive the distinction
between EF and EF-S lenses, you’ve acquired to grasp lens mounts.

What’s a Lens Mount?

The lens mount is the place the place a lens and a
digicam are available in contact. Technically talking, each the digicam and lens comprise
a part of the mount–and these two options mix to create a working setup.

Notice that totally different lens mounts are created by
totally different producers. A Canon lens mount is totally different from a Nikon lens
mount which is totally different from a Sony lens mount.

The EF vs EF-S distinction is an instance of
this final state of affairs. Canon makes each of those lens mounts, however one is designed
to mount on full-frame DSLRs, whereas the opposite is designed to mount on APS-C

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Compatability and Practical Difference 1
The photograph was taken with Canon APS-C digicam EF-S lens

A Historical past of EF Lens Mounts

EF lenses go all the way in which again to 1987, whereas
EF-S lenses are a lot newer (they have been created in 2003).

The title ‘EF’ comes from the mechanics of the
lens: EF lenses embrace an ‘Electro-Focus’ motor, which permits for digital
focus to be carried out by the lens itself.

Previous to utilizing the EF mount, Canon had been producing cameras and lenses that interfaced by the FD mount. This mount required that the autofocus motor be housed within the digicam relatively than the lens.

EF vs EF-S Lenses

When EF-S lenses have been first produced by Canon within the early 2000s, many EF lenses have been already on the scene.

However what’s the distinction between these two
lens varieties?

In essentially the most fundamental sense:

EF lenses are produced for Canon’s full-frame DSLRs. EF-S lenses are produced for Canon’s APS-C DSLRs.

Whereas there may be a variety of EF lenses, many
of them are designed with superior amateurs and professionals in thoughts.

Then again, EF-S lenses are designed to reap the benefits of the smaller APS-C sensor dimension. Canon additionally designed EF-S lenses to keep in mind the totally different wants of APS-C customers.

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Compatability and Practical Difference 2
Instance of a photograph that was shot with a Canon Full Body digicam and wide-angle EF lens

Can I Use EF Lenses on Crop
Sensor Cameras?

When you’re making an attempt to determine whether or not to purchase an
EF lens or an EF-S lens, it is a important query.

Can you utilize an EF lens on a crop-sensor digicam, or do they solely work on full-frame our bodies?

Fortuitously, it’s doable to make use of an EF lens
on a crop-sensor digicam. Nevertheless, there are just a few advantages and disadvantages to
keep in mind:


First, an EF lens could have a narrower area
of view on an APS-C digicam. For wildlife and sports activities photographers who require a
lot of attain, that is extraordinarily useful.

For example, a 300mm EF lens finally ends up with a area of view equal to a 480mm lens on an Canon APS-C digicam.

See additionally: Finest All-Round Canon Lens

Second, EF lenses are inclined to have a extra strong
construct than their EF-S counterparts. Many EF lenses, comparable to Canon’s L lenses,
are constructed with professionals in thoughts, and might deal with the trials of significant use.

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Compatability and Practical Difference 3
The photograph was taken with Canon APS-C digicam and EF lens


Whereas the slender area of view on an APS-C
digicam could also be appreciated by some photographers, others–primarily panorama
and architectural photographers–will need the widest area of view doable.

So in the event you’re a panorama or architectural shooter, otherwise you simply need an ultra-wide angle perspective, it’s higher to make use of a full-frame digicam with EF lenses.

See additionally: Finest Large Angle Lens for Canon

Plus, EF lenses are rather more costly than
EF-S lenses. When you’re on a funds, you’ll admire the cash it can save you by
buying EF lenses as a substitute.

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Compatability and Practical Difference 4

Can I Use EF-S Lenses on
Full-Body Cameras?

That will depend on the lens.

EF-S lenses have a tendency to stay out farther the place
they interface with the digicam. If the mount on the EF-S lens is lengthy sufficient,
it could actually come into contact with the digicam mirror, inflicting the digicam to interrupt.

Nevertheless, not all EF-S lenses have this downside. Some EF-S lenses have mounts that may interface with out damaging the mirror.

So, assuming that you just’re utilizing an EF-S lens
that safely mounts on a full-frame digicam, you’ll wish to take into consideration these key
advantages and disadvantages:


EF-S lenses are typically less expensive than the
corresponding EF choices, so an EF-S lens could be a good funds possibility.

EF-S lenses are additionally extra compact in comparison with
EF lenses, which is able to assist photographers who journey often.


There’s one huge situation that comes with utilizing an
EF-S lens on a full-frame physique:

They’re designed to undertaking the picture onto a
smaller (APS-C) sensor.

Which implies that an EF-S lens mounted onto a full-frame digicam will provide you with a heavy vignette, like this:

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Compatability and Practical Difference 5

You’re free to crop this out in post-processing.
However along with including time to your enhancing workflow, you’ll lose
pixels–which may slender your printing choices, amongst different issues.

Ought to I Purchase EF or EF-S Lenses
for my APS-C Digital camera?

You probably have an APS-C digicam, then you definitely’re free
to buy both EF or EF-S lenses. Each will interface simply nice together with your
digicam physique.

So it’s actually all about your wants as a

For Sports activities and Wildlife

When you’re seeking to do wildlife, sports activities, or hen pictures, then buying an EF super-telephoto lens is a superb thought. There are actually no EF-S substitutes for these lenses, plus a 400mm EF lens could have the sector of view of a 640mm lens on an APS-C digicam.

For Panorama, Structure, and
Journey Images

If you wish to do any sort of pictures that entails a wide-angle lens, then I like to recommend EF-S lenses.

Canon producers some nice wide-angle EF-S glass. And panorama photographers in addition to journey photographers usually spend hours or days within the area, the place a light-weight setup is important.

For Portrait and Informal

When you’re capturing portraits or walkaround
pictures on an APS-C digicam, EF-S lenses could be a nice selection.

They’re low-cost, they’re optically spectacular,
they usually’re small–which makes them an excellent possibility for both of most of these

Understanding Canon EF-M Mount and
EF-M Lenses

Along with its EF and EF-S lenses, Canon
produces one other lens lineup:

EF-M lenses.

These are designed to work on Canon EOS M
APS-C mirrorless our bodies, not DSLRs.

Nevertheless, Canon affords an adapter that permits
you to mount EF and EF-S lenses on a Canon EOS M physique.

Canon EF vs EF-S Lenses: Conclusion

Hopefully, you now perceive the important thing
variations between EF vs EF-S lenses.

You must also perceive why EF lenses and EF-S lenses have their place, no matter your digicam physique.

As a result of each provide some nice optics!

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