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Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Lens Review

Yongnuo are a Chinese camera accessory manufacturer who are now creating lenses and Gary Wolstenholme has put their 50mm f/1.8 Canon fit lens to the test in his latest review.

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Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Lens Review : Yongnuo 50mm F1 8 Canon EF (4)

Yongnuo are a Chinese camera accessory manufacturer, better known for their flash units, which are compatible with most of the major SLR camera systems. With this 50mm f/1.8 lens for Canon EOS cameras, it seems they’ve branched out into making clones of camera lenses too. This Yongnuo 50mm can be picked up for between £40 and £50, which is cheaper than Canon’s own 50mm f/1.8. In this review, we’ll take a look at how it performs.

Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Handling and Features

Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Lens Review : Yongnuo 50mm F1 8 Canon EF (3)

Weighing only 120g, this lens is very lightweight, being 10g lighter than the lens it owes its design to. Just like with the Canon version, the lens barrel is constructed almost entirely from lightweight black plastic, as is the bayonet. It all feels a bit brittle and probably won't cope with much abuse. The light weight and compact size makes for a nice combination with the Canon EOS 5D MkIII body used for testing.


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Autofocus is reasonably quick, although it is not especially accurate with the sample tested. As is the case with the Canon 50mm f/1.8, the autofocus motor is engaged with the ring, which rotates as the lens focuses. There is no way to disengage the manual focus ring during autofocus, so care needs to be taken to keep fingers clear of the ring as it rotates back and forth. In manual focus mode, there is no damping applied to the focus ring, which can make applying fine adjustment tricky.

Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Lens Review : Yongnuo 50mm F1 8 On Canon EOS 5D MKIII

Focusing isn't performed internally, but the 52mm filter thread does not rotate, making this lens ideal for use with polarising and graduated filters. Just like with the Canon lens, the filter thread is 52mm in diameter, so those wishing to use their standard 58mm or 77mm filters on this lens may do well to invest in a step-down ring. The minimum focus distance of 45cm is typical for lenses of this focal length and aperture. Overall, this lens is so close in design and handling to the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II that there is nothing between the two lenses in this respect.

Yongnuo 50mm f/1.8 Lens Review : Yongnuo 50mm F1 8 Canon EF (5)

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sasan 9 36 England
31 Mar 2015 9:13AM
Well ... The yellow thunder coming true ! China wants everything & I'm so scared for world's future
AlexandraSD 11 773 United Kingdom
31 Mar 2015 5:38PM
I cannot fault their flashguns, never had problems with them, but a rip off lens? Why blatantly copy the canon nifty?
31 Mar 2015 5:54PM
This copy is legal because the lens design is so old that the patent has already expired..
ElSid 15 11 United Kingdom
1 Apr 2015 1:28PM
Ye gods, have they no shame?! Frankly this lens looks like something that'd turn up on a dodgy market stall - it's about as honest as a fake Rolex...
AlexandraSD 11 773 United Kingdom
1 Apr 2015 6:13PM
It does beg belief really, i mean, if Yongnuo have the means to produce good glass, why not make it their own? Not saying that the optics on this are as sharp as a Canons, but for the average snapper, i am sure they would not notice, and surely this is who the lens is aimed at? Consumers who know bugger all about photography?

I think they missed a big trick by just cloning the nifty fifty, yeah the 50 is an amazing lens from Canon, but it looks so dated now, and not even pretty, maybe a slight redesign would make it more desireable to consumers, who knows, we got flashguns, now lenses, whatever next, a Yongnuo 5ds mkIII?

Not that i dislike Yongnuo, far from it, their flashguns are very good, no complaints there, but it just provides light, add an element to an image, whereas a lens could make or break an image, and this just wont cut the mustard!
lemmy 16 2.9k United Kingdom
1 Apr 2015 7:28PM

Quote: China wants everything & I'm so scared for world's future

I doubt they intend to behave as badly towards us as we did to them when we were the dominant power.
22 Feb 2017 9:49AM
Very useful as I have just spotted one on eBay.

Have you looked at the 35mm version:

YONGNUO YN35mm F/2 Lens Wide-angle Large Aperture Fixed Auto Focus Lens Canon UK
G_rand 3
1 Oct 2019 10:39PM
I got this camera, and I lost the directions. Idk how to use it. Can some one PLEASE help, Iím freaking out.

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