Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Cam I use a newer EF lens with a Rebel that uses EF S lenses


I have a Rebel T2i that came with EF S lenses - I want to buy a Canon 5d Mark II and am trying to find out if I can use the regular EF lenses used for the mark II on my old Rebel?  I know I can't use EF  S on the Mark II .I am trying to photograph birds and know I need a super telephoto lens I have the EF S 55-250 but need more  - hope since I plan to get the markII that I can get a lens that will work on both cams for now. I have been told that using a super telephoto lens on the mark II or a full frame camera  is counter productive .Do you all agree?  thanks



Yes  EF lenses will fit the T2i and NO I don't agrre with the idea that using a super telephoto lens is counter productive on ANY body as long as you realize it needs to be held very steady while shooting or better yet mounted to a tripod. Super tele's can be expensive so may I ask just what lenses you are consirering & I'll also point out that they will provide more reach on the T2i than on a 5D2. You have 18 mpixels available now but when you compare the FF sensor to the 1.6 crop sensor you'll really only have about 40% of it's pixels on target. In the simplest of terms that means when shooting a distant object with the same lens from the same position the comparison between the 2 images will favor the T2i shot because it has many more pixels on target. The full frame 5D2 sensor (after cropping to the same sized final result) will be about the same in size as produced by the old 20D & 30D & a bit smaller than one from a 40D.

"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."

Thank you so much! Finally an answer. I have been asking this same question on many question answer sites and always they assume I am asking if I can use film cam lenses with digital cameras. Anyway again thanks - makes sense - I don't know what lenses and would appreciate any advice. I can't spend over $3000 and know that limits me a lot . I would love 400 or more if I can find it. thanks again.


Hi Carolyn,


Make sure you are understanding the focal length point Cicopo makes.  A crop sensor camera like T2i gives a 1.6x focal length multiplier to every lens.  So a 100mm lens on a FF camera like 5D is a 160mm lens on the T2i.  That added "oomph" of "free telephoto power" the crop sensor imparts gets you into some nice long focal lengths that would be very expensive to reach by using more powerful glass on a FF camera.


If you want to stay with Canon you can get a 400mm f/5.6 or you could get a 100-400mm zoom.  There are cheaper 3rd party options, but low quality telephoto looks just terrible so be careful.


Canon 5d mk 4, Canon 6D, EF 70-200mm L f/2.8 IS mk2; EF 16-35 f/2.8 L mk. III; Sigma 35mm f/1.4 "Art" EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro; EF 85mm f/1.8; EF 1.4x extender mk. 3; EF 24-105 f/4 L; EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS; 3x Phottix Mitros+ speedlites

Why do so many people say "FER-tographer"? Do they take "fertographs"?

You have a few good options available so it would be good for us to know what things you want to shoot & how close you may expect to get plus whether you'll be shooting hand held or from a tripod most of the time. Long lenses are heavy, & as such you need good technique to prevent camera shake and unfortunately that part of photography comes from practice & a bit of arm strength. It would also help if you can tell us whether you're primarily after shots of stationary subjects or moving things, either slow movers or fast paced things like running horses, race cars etc.  

"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."

I use a tripod or a pole most of the time - I try to shoot in good light if possible - i am bad at guessing distances - if you can imagine being on the ground and a nest maybe higher than the highest commercial lamp post you come across I am trying to get an Osprey nest and birds .. and yes often the birds are flying / sometime landing in the nest and etc. If you look at my photss (which I realize you don't have time to do) but those are the shots I recently took with my rebel T2i with the standardEF S  55-250 lens -some hand held / some on tripod.

Post a link & I'll check your photos (or PM it). You have at least 3 good options in high quality Canon L series lenses and they all fit your budget & get very high marks for birding. The 300 f4 L IS, the 400 f5.6 L (it doesn't have IS) & my favorite the 100-400 L IS. You can also use a 1.4 TC on the 300 L but the AF might struggle a bit.


This shot sounds a bit like what you are trying to get height & distance wise but it was shot at dusk so some detail is a bit poor. 7D & 100-400 L at 400 mm ISO 1600 (this is the full frame)



"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."

Thank you again. Yes that is pretty much exactly what I am tryin gto shoot. I have many (more than you'd care to see) on a flicker site      maybe you can just skim over them.. I also have some others on this canon site under my account and my photos ? can send you that link later if you are not able to reach it .  which of the lenses you mention do you feel is the best - are they all EF lenses ?  Another question do you know if I could use a doubler with the lens I have now?  (EF S 55-250) on the Rebel T2i?   I really appreciate your help . thank you so much.

Thank you very much. I sincerely appreciate the detailed information and explaination regarding the cropped Rebel / etc.

I knew there was something like that but it wasn't really clear to me until I read your and the other contributers answers. It is starting to make some sense .. thanks again



If I may add a step in your bird photography, I suggest you load Photo Shop Elements, it came free with your camera (?), on your computer and learn how to use it.

Consider these figures before you lay your money down.

The 55-250mm you already have acts like a 88-400mm on your T2i. The addition of a 400mm lens, zoom or prime, for the 5D Mk II is going to show the same size photograph.

A 400mm lens on your T2i will act like a 640mm lens.

One thing I have noticed over the years is most people use a zoom lens at the long end. Otherwise, I mean if you get the 100-400mm zoom, I bet you use the 400mm side way more than the 100mm side. Somethign to consider! That said the 100-400mm zoom is still my choice over the 400mm prime.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!