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I have a canon AE1 program SLR. Will my AE1 lenses work on a Canon 60 D?



NO. You need to buy modern lenses too. If you want there have been many threads about using adapters which can be found using the search function but it's not really a good idea to go that route.

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

Is there something other than a 60d that would work? Even with adaptor?

EF & EF-S lenses are VERY different than FD lenses. No modern Canon camera works with FD lenses properly. Firstly you'll have no auto focus function AND no focusing aid built in.

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

Technically you can use an adapter to mount a FD lens to an EOS camera,  You will have to manually focus and set your F-stop but it can be done.  If the adapter has the extra lens in it, it should focus to infinity, if not then should do macro but not infinity. 

It does work, it's a little cumbersome but it can be done.  I did that with a 400mm FD lens for a while on a T4i and I did get some acceptable day shots.  It is very hard to focus unless you use the screen while using the adapter.

As noted, FD to EOS/EF adapters are available. There are two types: those with an optical element designed to allow the lens to focus to infinity and those without any optics, that won't allow infinity focus.


The problem is, adding optics to the rear of the lens ofter compromises image quality a lot. Most that are affordable are pretty poor quality. So, it's a long shot to use the adapters with optics. Only you can say if it's acceptible or worthwhile.


The adapters without optics can work on long telephotos or macro lenses, where you aren't focusing to infinity anyway. Some super telephotos were designed to focus beyond infinity anyway, so might be able to do so even with an adapter.


Another thing to look for with adapters is a "chip". This doesn't give autofocus, but it does allow Focus Confirmation to work. That can help with manual focusing.


But the aperture will always be strictly manual. When you stop down, your viewfinder will dim down too. And at some point, depending upon the light available, even Focus Confirmation will stop working. Some Canon cameras are rated to f8 (1DX and 5DIII), but most are only to f5.6. I've found the f5.6 rated cameras will still give Focus Confirmation pretty reliably at f8 on a bright day... start to fail most of the time at f11. The dimmer viewfinder also doesn't help with manual focusing.


For more info about using vintage lenses on modern Canon cameras, check out Bob Atkin's website.


Alan Myers

San Jose, Calif., USA
"Walk softly and carry a big lens."
GEAR: 5DII, 7D(x2), 50D(x3), some other cameras, various lenses & accessories




EOS lenses are electronic.  The connection between camera body and lens relies only on electronic communication pins which control focus and aperture functions (as well as other features depending on the lens.)


FD lenses were completely mechanical.  There is no auto-focus and the aperture was controlled by a mechanical lever which engages the body.


FD lense can be adapted so that they "fit" but the camera still cannot control the aperture (it becomes a manually controlled aperture lens... fortunately FD lenses have aperture rings on the lens) and of course there is no auto-focus.  


The auto-focus may not seem a big deal ... because Canon cameras that used FD lenses didn't support auto-focus either.  BUT... those cameras had split-prism focusing aids AND they were all 35mm film cameras with nice big bright viewfinders.  This made manual focus fairly easy to do.


A 60D is an APS-C size sensor camera (a little smaller than 35mm) and the since the sensor is a bit smaller, the reflex mirror is also a bit smaller, and the viewfinder display is also a bit smaller.  Since the camera normally expects you to attach an auto-focusing lens (because all EF and EF-S lenses do auto-focus... only the speciality lenses do not and there's just a few of those... such as the tilt-shift lenses) the viewfinder doesn't need a split-prism focusing aid.  This makes it a bit more difficult to determine when you've achieved accurate focus.


It's typically not worth the effort to adapt an FD lens for use on an EOS body... not unless it's an absolutely amazing FD lens that you cannot live without.  It's a much better idea to invest in EOS lenses.


Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
click here to view the press release