LensTip.com

Lens review

Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM

15 December 2009
Szymon Starczewski

8. Vignetting

When wide open, the vignetting problem is serious because the brightness loss in the corners amounts to 27%. We must immediately add that the result was reached on the Canon 20D so on the sensor 1.6 smaller than the 35 mm film frame the tested lens was designed for. We can expect that on full frame the vignetting at the maximum aperture will be huge indeed. How huge exactly it remains to be seen in the following part of this chapter.

Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM - Vignetting

Fortunately there are some good news too. On stopping down to f/2.0 the light fall-off in the corners is just 10% and by f/2.8 – less than 5%. The situation is significantly better than that of a Canon 1.8/50 II which, by f/2.0, had the vignetting at the level of 20%.

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Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM - Vignetting

Let’s raise the standards and see what the situation looks like on the full frame.

Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM - Vignetting


As we expected at the beginning – it is truly bad. At the maximum relative aperture the Canon 1.4/50 loses as many as 72% of light (- 3.7 EV). On stopping down to f/2.0 the situation improves significantly but the problem still remains big because it reaches 53% of light fall-off. Even the f/2.8 aperture doesn’t guarantee the full comfort of work because the light fall-off still amounts to 30% there. Only by f/4.0 and f/5.6, with the results of 15% and 11% respectively, we can be sure we get pictures with the vignetting level not very bothersome or even invisible.

Canon EF 50 mm f/1.4 USM - Vignetting