Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Review

July 1, 2015

Overall Rating:


Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM



Price as Reviewed:



It’s been a long time coming, but 25 years after the EF 50mm f/1.8 II was launched Canon has replaced its ‘nifty fifty’ with the new EF 50mm f/1.8 STM. Michael Topham finds out if it represents a bargain at just £129

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Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM – Verdict

The EF 50mm f/1.8 II has long been due a replacement and the arrival of the EF 50mm f/1.8 STM has been met with great interest from the Canon faithful. The addition of the STM motor delivers a much quieter performance, and although it’s not entirely silent in operation, unless you’re recording video where there’s no ambient sound it’s not an issue that should be a concern.


The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM has a 49mm filter thread

Despite still being predominantly plastic, its build quality and overall finish is in a different league to the previous two versions. We particularly like the smooth manual ring that offers precise control for fine focusing adjustments and that Canon has listened to its users and reintroduced a metal mount.


The Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II (left) and the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM (right)

So should you spend a bit more on the new EF 50mm f/1.8 STM? There’s an argument that since there’s no difference in terms of sharpness, the EF 50mm f/1.8 II still makes a great buy. But when you consider the autofocus and build-quality gains from the new lens it’s a small price to pay for a significantly better-made optic that will last longer.

  • Filter diameter: 49mm
  • Lens elements: 6
  • Groups: 5
  • Diaphragm blades: 7
  • Aperture range: f/1.8 - f/22
  • Minimum focus: 35 cm
  • Length: 39.3mm
  • Diameter: 69.2mm
  • Weight: 160g
  • Mount: Canon EF

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