What a blast and from the past

By Weenson Oo on 02:10

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You don't see it these days. Not that there were many examples of it in it's heyday. It certainly wasn't something you could have placed into your basket at Amazon, Adorama, B&H or Calumet. Well, not at the $89,579 price tag which was the asking price of the unit when it was launched.


Measuring 32.9 inches without it's hood and weighing in at 36.4 lbs ( 16.5kg ), the Canon EF 1200mm f5.6L USM Super Telephoto is the world's longest and rarest autofocus lens.  Only available through special preorder arrangements,  lead times were being quoted at 18 months. It's hardly surprising that the lens took several months to construct since the growing time for  the large fluorite crystals which made up the third and sixth elements was around a year. Introduced in 1993, it was finally discontinued in 2005 with as you would expect, a very exclusive uptake. Sports Illustrated and Canon Professional Services are known to have two copies a piece, with National Geographic and James Jannard, the billionaire founder of Oakley having one each.

When shot with an EOS 1Ds MkIII, faces were said to have been recognizable at distances in excess of a mile. Mount this onto a 1.6x body like the 7D and you would have a field of view equivalent to a lens bearing a focal length of 1920mm. That would indeed have to be quite an L lens!!!

If you're looking to take a picture of that woodpecker in your back garden, get a 600mm or a 400mm with a teleconverter instead. This thing has a minimum focusing distance of 45.9 feet or 14 meters. Another reason why the Canon EF 1200L wasn't perhaps for everybody.



Picture - http://www.robertphotoblog.com

Further information and a review, look up http://www.the-digital-picture.com/reviews/Canon-EF-1200mm-f-5.6-L-USM-Lens-Review.aspx

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