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Posts: 4
Registered: ‎10-13-2014

Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?

Rebels can take EF or EF-S lenses.  Full frame only take EF.

 

So when I buy an EF-S lens I am limited should I choose to upgrade to full frame.

 

Questio:  What is the advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel? 

 

Thank you.

Art

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Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎02-28-2013

Re: Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?

[ Edited ]

Smaller sensors can use lenses with smaller optics (smaller diameter), and therefore they are cheaper to manufacturer and (theoretically) they can pass those savings onto the customer.

 

You can also get additional benefits of smaller lenses for any given focal length or maximum aperture.

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Posts: 3,834
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?

In a word:  cost

 

As Skirball has already pointed out... since the sensor on the APS-C lens is physically smaller, it's possible to produce a slightly smaller lens, with less glass and STILL maintain the same standard of performance.

 

I used to have a Canon EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro (which I have since donated to a relative)... but when I swtiched to full frame, I bought the EF 100mm f/2.8L IS USM Macro.  The EF-S was very impressive when compared with the L series lens.  But one of Canon's rules for a lens to qualify as an "L" lens is that it must work with EVERY Canon EOS body... past, present (and presumably future).  Since EF-S lenses can only be attached to EOS bodies with APS-C sensors, they can't qualify as "L" lenses no matter how good the optical quality may be... but that doesn't mean they don't have impressive optical quality.

 

Buy lenses to fit your budget and to be compatible with the camera you have.  Full-frame digitial camera bodies provide a different "look" to the images.  For sports, many people don't like them.  For portraiture, landscape, and art photography... I really like what they can do.

 

If you KNOW you want a full-frame body and you also know you plan to move to full frame soon... then it probably makes sense to stick with lenses you know will work with the next body.  But if you are happy with the APS-C crop-frame body (and there's no reason you shouldn't be), then get whatever lens works best with that body and don't worry about it.

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
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Posts: 1,861
Registered: ‎12-02-2012

Re: Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?

[ Edited ]
Yes. Cost. The EF-s lenses are designed and marketed as consumer grade lenses, and generally on the inexpensive side of consumer grade. Most of the zooms are variable aperture. All are plastic. They tend to have less exotic coatings and materials to prevent lens flare. And for some reason Canon likes to omit lens hoods from most models, and sell them separately.

If anything, an EF (full frame) lens is better on a crop body than a crop lens is because the weaker edge portions of the lens's image circle are cut off by the smaller crop sensor, so the images look sharper on the edges and the vignetting is usually cut out too.

On the other hand, the crop zoom lenses are designed to cover useful ranges on a crop body, and the full frame lenses are not. A standard full frame zoom like a 24-105 or a 24-70 will not be as wide as you probably want on a crop body due to the 1.6x focal length multiplier you get on a crop body. A standard crop zoom will be something like 18-55 or 17-55 for that reason.

Good luck!
Scott

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"?
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Posts: 5,429
Registered: ‎06-25-2014

Re: Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?


@artmaltman wrote:

Rebels can take EF or EF-S lenses.  Full frame only take EF.

 

So when I buy an EF-S lens I am limited should I choose to upgrade to full frame.

 

Questio:  What is the advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel? 

 

Thank you.

Art


As others have pointed out, cost and weight are considerations, at least in theory. But to me the greatest advantage of APS-C lenses is that their focal lengths are chosen to be a good match for the APS-C sensor size. For example, on a 35mm film camera (or a FF digital) 50mm is thought to be a "normal" lens. (I forget exactly why, but it has something to do with the area subtended by the human eye.) So a walking-around zoom lens for a FF DSLR will have a range of, say, 24 to 70mm, placing 50mm about in the middle. Wide angles and telephotos will range downwards from the low end and upwards from the high end, so that they form a more-or-less integrated system.

 

But on an APS-C system, with its smaller sensor size, a "normal" lens is between 30 and 35mm, and a 50mm lens is a mild telephoto. So a normal APS-C zoom lens will typically have a range of around 18 to 50mm. Similarly, FF telephotos are longer, and FF WAs not as wide, as they "should" be for an APS-C camera. So you'll find, say, 10-20mm APS-C WAs or 50-150mm zoom lenses. If this focal length mismatch doesn't bother you (and it very well may not, especially if all your lenses are FF), then there's no compelling reason, other than cost or weight, not to buy FF lenses. And it makes particularly good sense to buy them if you're contemplating an eventual transition to FF equipment.

 

Other possible considerations include the fact that FF lenses, since their target market includes more professionals, are often better than those designed for APS-C. But there are many exceptions, and really good APS-C lenses, as well as really poor FF lenses, are available if you shop carefully. So the bottom line is that you have to take a hard look at your requirements and aspirations and make an informed decision - which may well not be the (equally correct) decision another photographer would make.

Bob
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
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Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Advantage of EF-S vs EF lenses on APS-C cameras like Rebel?

Art,

Whatever, justification folks try to point out in this comparison, all you have to do is hold one of each in your hands.  Just that limited 'exposure' to the two will tell you the difference.

Just remember the "L" series is degined for professional shooters and the "S" lenses are designed for the mass market.

EB

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
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