The Canon m50 has proven to be an extremely popular mirrorless camera and although a large amount of its initial core customer base came from the vlogging community progressing from the Canon G7X to the m50, the excellent image quality, functionality, and build quality of the m50 as well as its low price has cemented its position as one of the leading entry-level mirrorless cameras on the market right now. As people have become comfortable with the camera we have noticed more and more people reaching out and asking various questions based around how they are able to get the most out of the m50 in various other niches to see how far they can push the camera.
One of the main things that we have noticed people reaching out about is Canon m50 macro photography based questions. We feel that the sudden increase is due to macro photography becoming increasingly popular as well as a number of popular vloggers and social media influencers using macro photography and videography as a key part of their b-roll with great effect. Anyway, for today’s article, we want to be going over what we feel is the best macro lens for Canon m50 cameras currently available on the market right now.
Although there are a few decent compatible Canon m50 lenses that can get the job done, we feel that the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 is definatley the best option and that it can easily make an excellent addition to your collection of m50 camera accessories. It comes with the Canon EF-M lens mount as standard meaning that the lens will natively mount directly to your m50 without the need for any additional convertors or lens adaptors too helping to improve overall image quality. Some of the compeating lenses on the market right now require a convertor or adaptor to mount to your m50 and depending on the quality of the adaptor, this can really cause problems with capturing sharp, clear images. Thankfully, the Canon 28mm f/3.5 will mount directly to your m50 and prevent you having to deal with any of these issues.
Since its release onto the market, the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 has proven to be a very popular option amongst users of the Canon EOS-M range of cameras with many considering it part of the core trifecta of lenses being the Canon 11-22mm f/4-5.6, the Canon 22mm f/2, and the Canon 28mm f/3.5. Adding these three lenses to your collection of camera accessories for the Canon m50 can pretty much keep you covered and ensure that you get the best possible image quality for the majority of popular tasks that the camera is used for.
Since its release onto the market, the Canon 28mm f/3.5 has managed to rightfully earn itself an excellent reputation amongst the community that shows no signs of changing as its reputation keeps on getting stronger and stronger with each passing month. Although we will be primarily focusing on the macro photography performance of the lens in this article, the Canon 28mm f/3.5 is also a great little everyday walk-around lens that has a large number of uses and its close to human field of view allows you to capture images in a very similar way to how you will see them via your eyes.
The great versatility of the Canon 28mm f/3.5 basically allows you to switch between macro photography with a flower or insect to a portrait of a friend to a sunset photograph and more all with the same lens. If you are into your travel vlogging or something like this then adding a lens as versatile as the Canon 28mm f/3.5 to your camera accessories can really reduce the amount of space and weight requirements from the rest of your camera accessories due to this lens ticking so many boxes.
Performance And Functionality
Although some people still feel that the strengths of the Canon m50 are in its great vlogging and videography image quality, it really does offer some excellent levels of image quality for regular photography too and mounting the correct lens to the camera for the task at hand can provide you with some beautiful photographs. The Canon 28mm f/3.5 comes with its super macro mode that really does make macro photography with the m50 a breeze and ensures that you are easily able to capture the best image quality possible with your m50 when it comes to macro photography.
Although enabling the super macro mode on the lens does a number of things internally to optimize it for macro photography, the end results for your image quality include capturing your subject in even more detail, allowing you to fully fill the frame with your subject, easily highlighting areas of the frame you like, and keeping any unwanted background imagery to an absolute minimum. It also optimizes the focusing of the lens for the closer ranges allowing you to get in as close as 0.3 foot from your subject and still get excellent image quality without blur or distortion. This minimum focal length on the lens helps even a novice macro photographer get up close and personal to their subject and get the best image quality possible without having to waste time optimizing the lens.
You can then switch the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 back to normal mode and the lens will instantly re-optimize itself for regular photography and kick its autofocus and image stabilization settings back up to what you may require for normal photographs. When used in normal mode the lens is also fully capable of focusing all the way out to infinity like a regular standard lens too while still having all of its excellent macro potential waiting at the press of a button too.
Depending on how you are planning to capture your macro photographs with your Canon m50, the built-in image stabilization may not be needed if you are planning to use a decent yet cheap tripod for example. That said though, the hybrid image stabilization on the lens really does help you knock it out of the park when it comes to handheld macro photography. It allows you to get up close and personal to your subject and minimize the effect of any movement of holding your m50 in your hands by correct the image to help you get excellent image quality.
If you are planning to use the Canon 28mm f/3.5 in other photography niches with your Canon m50 then the image stabilization can be extremely useful too. It allows you to do a ton of run and gun style photography with the lens and capture your photographs within seconds of bringing your camera up to your eye without having to wait for the image stabilization to kick in. Although Canon have had issues with their image stabilization technology previously, this latest range of lenses absolutely nail it and it definatley does seem that the majority of the issues that their old system had have been ironed out resulting in this very quick system found on these latest lenses.
The autofocus technology on the lens is excellent too and allows you to quickly and easily refocus the lens with minimal additional effort being required on your part. Unlike a few of the compeating macro lenses on the market right now, the autofocus system on the Canon 28mm f/3.5 is fully functional when the lens is being used in its macro photography mode too with full optimization up to 1.2 x magnification. The stepping motor on the lens is extremely smooth and efficient too and Canon has put some work in to make it as quiet as possible when being used too. Some of the older lenses had that annoying clicking sound and although it was rarely an issue, if you were using one of the older lenses with your Canon m50 for vlogging and recording your audio track with the built-in microphone, these clicks will likley have been heard. Thankfully though, the new system is much quieter and even when using the built-in microphone rather than an external microphone there should be no issues with the Canon 28mm f/3.5 STM contaminating your audio track.
Now, no lens is without weak points but the only weak point that we have noticed on the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 when it comes to its macro photography capabilities is its aperture. Coming in at f/3.5 at its widest that is ideal for many photography niches, we feel that most Canon m50 users will probably bump the lenses aperture up to around f/8 for optimum image quality. We have noticed a few people comment on how this can have a negative effect on the image quality that they are able to capture when using the lens in low light but turning the build-in macro lite system on totally prevents this issue anyway.
We are fully aware that if you do want to use a lens filter with your Canon 28mm f/3.5 then you have to use the screw on adapter that is included with your purchase due to the lack of mounting threads on the lens and the adaptor does, unfortunately, cover the LED lights but for the vast majority of people, this should not be an issue anyway. This is why, in our opinion, the few negative comments about using the lens at its f/8 settings can be dismissed due to how easy it is to overcome any problems with low light anyway.
The built-in macro lite system on the Canon 28mm f/3.5 is excellent and has been implemented really well in our opinion, it allows you to quickly and easily provide a soft light source to your subject. Depending on the conditions that you are capturing your photographs in, this can have a surprising effect on the image quality that you are able to capture with the lens and ensures that no matter the lighting conditions, you are always able to capture your subject as you wish.
With the lens being a fixed prime lens, a number of people have asked questions based on how the 28mm focal length is usually considered on the wide side for macro photography. Although we would tend to agree with you usually, Canon has done a great job with the Canon 28mm f/3.5 and a large number of photographers who use the lens have published their own independent reviews sharing their thoughts and experiences with the lens. If you have the time, you can skim over them and you will be able to see, at the time of writing at least, there is not a single third-party review commenting on how the 28mm focal length of the lens holds it back when it comes to macro photography.
User Interface And Control System
Just like the majority of other modern camera lenses on the market right now, the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 has an extremely user-friendly control system to ensure that everyone from an entry-level photographer all the way up to an experienced professional-level photographer is able to get what they require out of the lens. On top of this, all of the various buttons and switches have been positioned to ensure that you are quickly and easily able to reach them while keeping your camera to your eye during use without compromising your positioning.
The manual focus ring on the lens is smooth and easy to rotate with ease too requiring minimal pressure to actually rotate. This allows you to take control if you prefer to manually focus on your subject yourself rather than have the autofocus decide what is best for your image. In our opinion, the ring has just enough resistance to assist you when manually tweaking the levels of focus on the lens to help prevent you from accidentally over or under rotating while making your tweaks too.
The macro lite LED system is also extremely user-friendly too with it all being controlled from a single button on the lens. A single button press when the LEDs are off will turn them on in bright mode offering the best light output possible. Pressing the button twice in quick succession will switch the macro lite system to the dim mode offering a softer light. You can also adjust the system so only one of the LEDs will turn on too if required to help soften the effects of the light if required allowing you to always customize the LED output to meet your needs.
Build Quality And Design
Before getting into the actual build quality of the lens, we just want to comment on how we feel that Canon has done an excellent job of keeping the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 as small and lightweight as possible while still ensuring that it offers the best image quality possible. The lens comes in at only 2.4 inches by 1.8 inches with a tiny weight of 0.28 pounds making it a great option if you are into your travel vlogging or travel photography as the lens ticks so many boxes and can be used in a number of niches with you only having to add one small and light lens to your kit.
The majority of the lens is made from lightweight aluminum or robust and light plastic to help ensure that it is as light as possible. Thankfully, Canon has ensured that the Canon 28mm f/3.5 is as tough as possible helping it score additional points over some of the other compeating lenses on the market right now that are surprisingly weak and flimsy, even at this price point in the market. This ensures that the lens will easily be able to take any bumps or knocks without breaking and help ensure the lens is able to last you for many years to come without issue.
Canon has also put a ton of work into the actual lens elements to help remove the issues that some of their older lenses had with chromatic aberration, lens flare, and ghosting. We are pleased to report that they have done a great job and although there is still some slight chromatic aberration at times, it is definatley kept to a minimum helping to ensure that you are getting the best possible image quality during use. The Canon 28mm f/3.5 also uses two aspherical lens elements that have been optimized to work together to ensure that your image quality is always as sharp and rich as possible, especially when used in the lenses super macro mode.
As we touched on earlier in the article, Canon has not included lens filter threads on the Canon 28mm f/3.5 and we really wish that they had. We always recommend that our readers invest in a decent yet cheap UV lens filter to help increase the levels of protection for their forward lens element during use. Canon has tried to go with a workaround of including a lens hood for the lens with a screw-in filter mount with a thread size of 43mm. As we touched on earlier in the article though, this does cover the LED lights for the lens restricting the efficiency of the macro lite system on the lens so there is definatley a trade-off.
That brings our article going over what we feel is the best Canon m50 macro photography lens to an end and out of all of the compatible Canon m50 lenses on the market right now, we feel that the Canon EF-M 28mm f/3.5 is definatley the better option. It is one of the most versatile lenses available for the Canon m50 at the time of writing and offers some outstanding image quality for its price point in the market too.
On top of this, as we touched on earlier, a large number of photographers and videographers who use the Canon EF-M range of cameras have published their own dedicated reviews of the lens that you can read if you wish. In our opinion, those reviews are definatley worth skimming over as they offer a number of external insights into how well the lens is able to perform for other people in a large number of common situations.