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Thread: Crop-sensor lenses on full frame bodies

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    Crop-sensor lenses on full frame bodies

    So, some lenses are designed for crop-sensor bodies, like the EF-S range from Canon, and many other third party lenses.

    What happens when you use these on full-frame bodies? I think I heard somewhere that in some cases you can't take the photo because the mirror will strike the back of the lens... in other cases there may be severe vignetting. Is this right? Are there other scenarios? Is there a way to know what scenario I'd get with a particular lens - body combination, without trial and error?

    I'm asking because most of my lenses are for crop-sensor bodies, and I'm thinking of going FF. Also, a friend bought a Sigma 10-20mm and is planning to use it on a Nikon D700.

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    Am pretty sure that you are correct on both counts.
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    EF-S lenses won't mount on a full frame body.

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    I'm not too sure about the mirror striking the back of the lens, at least not with the Nikon DX lenses (lenses for cropped sensors) from memory, but you definitely get vignetting to varying degrees. In the manual there should be a list of lenses that can be safely used with your camera so check whether the EF-S lenses are listed as safe for Canon FF cameras. It should be quite easy to download a copy of the manual of the FF model you're after.
    As for vignetting, the 35/1.8G for example almost covers the full frame even though it's a DX lens so the vignetting is less and quite acceptable to some ppl.
    There's also an option on the FX cameras to auto-crop the image to use only the middle part of the sensor that the DX image circle covers. But it seems wasteful to buy full frame but not utilize all the available sensor area.
    Nikon FX

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    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    Btw my knowledge in this area is mainly based on Nikon models so it may vary with Canon or Sonly.

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    Thanks for that!

    I'm sure if I go FF I'll also be buying suitable glass, so the question was more out of curiosity than anything else... and hey, if it worked out, a 10mm lens on a FF would be really wide!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by achee View Post
    and hey, if it worked out, a 10mm lens on a FF would be really wide!!
    With massive vignetting making it a pointless exercise.

    EF-S lenses are not designed for FF cameras and even if you did manage to get one on there, you will likely damage your camera. And even if you didn't you will end up with rubbish photos due to vignetting and edge sharpness issues.

    Simply don't do it.
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    There is an article here on modifying an EF-S lens to EF mount:

    http://metku.net/index.html?sect=vie.../efs/index_eng

    However, this should NOT be attempted for a full-frame camera body, as there is a very high likelihood of the modified lens damaging the mirror in your body; and, in addition, are likely to suffer from strong (or complete) vignetting. This mod is for early-model DSLRs such as the 10D and 30D, which accept only EF-mount lenses, but have an EF-S sized sensor and mirror inside.
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    Canon does not allow EF-S lenses on FF bodies, as they added some crap on the mount. That's why nobody buys EF-S if they can avoid it.

    Nikon FX bodies detect DX lenses and mask out the area to use only the DX part of the sensor. You can override it.

    Don't buy Sony unless you have a very very very good reason to.

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    Some of the Sony lenses are a very good reason to buy Sony. And there is a whole range of fantastic Ef-s lenses that people do buy and not avoid, as they are excellent and sometimes quoted as better than the full frame alternative. Most people will never go full frame. Most that do, probably dont need to. Myself include, though I do love mine. Otherwise I agree with the two related points that reaction made regarding both the Nikon and Canon cameras, in regards to their ability to take crop lenses.
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    Take care with this sort of topic. Somer people will blandly make quite ridiculous statements as if they were truth. Here is an example:

    Quote Originally Posted by reaction View Post
    nobody buys EF-S if they can avoid it
    It is, of course, complete nonsense. Lots and lots of people buy EF-S lenses, and many of these people are experts. There are lots of good reasons to buy EF-S lenses. For example, if you want THE best general-purpose walkaround lens there is for a Canon 7D, XXD, or XXXD, the EF-S 17-55/2.8 IS is the one you want. Nothing else matches it. If you want ultra-wide on a 1.6 body, then once again, an EF-S lens like the Canon 10-22 (or a similar lens from a third-party maker) is not just your best answer, it is your ONLY answer.

    Moving along now, you have already read above that Canon EF-S lenses physically do not fit on non-1.6 crop bodies, and that there is a very good reason for the mount being made incompatible - it is to prevent serious damage from accidentally using an incompatible lens that protrudes too far into the body. (EF-S lenses do this - that is the whole purpose of the EF-S mount: providing the lens designer with the ability to take advantage of the crop body to make a smaller, lighter, higher-quality lens for the same cost, or an equal lens for lower cost.)

    But the third-party lenses DO NOT take advantage of the EF-S mount. They can't benefit from the shorter distance between lens and sensor, but the upside of that is that they CAN be easily adapted to fit different makers bodies (Pentax, Nikon, etc.), and that they CAN physically fit on a non-crop body.

    I have two third-party lenses, both are made for crop bodies - and both also fit onto and work with my 1D III. The Tokina 35mm macro works perfectly in every way on the 1D III, and the Tokina 10-17mm fish works fine past about 13mm or so. Zoom out too far and it vignettes, but it nevertheless provides an even wider FOV on the 1D III than it does on a 20D. I've probably posted sample images somewhere here. Sing out if you are interested and I'll look them up.
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    "Tokina 35mm macro works perfectly in every way on the 1D III, and the Tokina 10-17mm fish"

    It is important to note these are lenses are actually pentax lens designs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by achee View Post
    So, some lenses are designed for crop-sensor bodies, like the EF-S range from Canon, and many other third party lenses.

    What happens when you use these on full-frame bodies? I think I heard somewhere that in some cases you can't take the photo because the mirror will strike the back of the lens... in other cases there may be severe vignetting. Is this right? Are there other scenarios? Is there a way to know what scenario I'd get with a particular lens - body combination, without trial and error?

    I'm asking because most of my lenses are for crop-sensor bodies, and I'm thinking of going FF. Also, a friend bought a Sigma 10-20mm and is planning to use it on a Nikon D700.
    Achee, I have several original Nikon Prime Lens (made in Japan...don't make that kind of lens glass any more) and I have an adapter ring to fit to my Canon's. I get some vignetting and so have to allow for this in the final shot. The simple fact is that the actual usable photo is often better than my Canon Lens! My daughter-in-law has a Nikon D7000 and has borrowed them to use on her camera and she feels they are better too, so how about that! Obviously they have to be used as manual lens.
    Last edited by Doninoz; 01-06-2011 at 8:55pm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by achee View Post
    So, some lenses are designed for crop-sensor bodies, like the EF-S range from Canon, and many other third party lenses.

    What happens when you use these on full-frame bodies?
    That depends.

    Canon's EF-S (the S stands for 'short backfocus') lenses cannot be used on:

    1. any Canon film SLR;
    2. EOS-1D (and successors);
    3. EOS-1Ds (and successors);
    4. EOS 5D (and successors);
    5. EOS 10D;
    6. EOS D30 (old; not to be confused with the 30D); and
    7. EOS D60 (old; not to be confused with the 60D).


    The rear of the lens protrudes further into the chamber than an EF lens, meaning it will collide with the mirror.

    Quote Originally Posted by achee View Post
    I think I heard somewhere that in some cases you can't take the photo because the mirror will strike the back of the lens... in other cases there may be severe vignetting. Is this right?
    Both scenarios are true, and yes, it depends on the lens.

    Canon's EF-S lenses as above cannot be used at all (without modifying them), as they are physically incompatible.

    Some lenses, like the Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX HSM, are designed for APS-C cameras, but have an EF mount.

    This is what happens when you mount one on a full-frame DSLR:

    Last edited by Xenedis; 01-06-2011 at 9:30pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by soulman View Post
    EF-S lenses won't mount on a full frame body.
    Or Canon's EOS-1D, an APS-H (1.3x FOVCF) camera.

    There are also two very old and long-discontinued 1.6x FOCVF cameras (EOS D30, EOS D60 and EOS 10D), with which EF-S lenses also will not work.

    The first Canon DSLR to support EF-S lenses was the EOS 300D.
    Last edited by Xenedis; 01-06-2011 at 9:41pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reaction View Post
    Canon does not allow EF-S lenses on FF bodies, as they added some crap on the mount.
    By design.

    Quote Originally Posted by reaction View Post
    That's why nobody buys EF-S if they can avoid it.
    The number of EF-S lenses available, and the fact that Canon is continuing to develop them, would appear to be at odds with your claim.

    There are two particular EF-S lenses very much worth having if you plan to stay with the Canon APS-C format.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xenedis View Post
    Some lenses, like the Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6 EX HSM, are designed for APS-C cameras, but have an EF mount.

    This is what happens when you mount one on a full-frame DSLR:
    ...
    Yep, had that lens, tried it out, got that result, sold that lens. Along with two other lenses. Now I have EF lenses.

    (The Sigma 10-20mm was very usable, ie minimal to no vignetting, at about 15-16mm on a FF body, by the way.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by reaction View Post
    Don't buy Sony unless you have a very very very good reason to.
    Why / Why not ??????
    And by Sony do you include Minolta???
    Is there compatability issues with Minolta / Sony lenses and FF cameras like the 900 & 850??
    CC always welcome and appreciated.
    Tweaks welcome but please add how and why.



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    "Don't buy Sony unless you have a very very very good reason to. "

    Sony has released some very useful lenses for the Alpha(minolta) lens mount, the 135mm f/1.8 is pretty decent lens, easily matches the canon equivalent - though sony could have made it apochromatic to keep the LoCa under control. The sony 24-70mm f/2.8 SSM is very capable, the SAL 35mm f/1.8 is very good for entry level users and puts sony ahead of canon who only have a EF35mm f2 that is about 30 years old, the canon 35L is out of the price range for many beginners. Though there are some pretty average lenses Minolta has made - the rokkor 35mm f/1.4 isn't that great - The Pentax FA31mm f/1.8 Limited cheerfully stomps on it. The rokkor 58mm f/1.2 isn't bad if you stop it down (at f/1.2 it's bokeh can get really ugly, that lens has a horrendous coma problem)
    Last edited by Othrelos; 02-06-2011 at 9:36pm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doninoz View Post
    Achee, I have several original Nikon Prime Lens (made in Japan...don't make that kind of lens glass any more) ......
    depending on the actual lenses .... you'd be surprised to see what Nikon still makes!

    Not all great tho. Some are, some aren't. in 99.9% of instances tho, the newer lenses seem to perform better.

    On an interesting note:
    I'm curious as to what would constitute a 'very very good reason' to buy into the Sony system?
    (I know!!.. how about this one? .. "I want a camera! I'll get a Sony." Sounds good enough to me)

    In fact I'd be interested to read a single valid reason for not buying into the Sony system?
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
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    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


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