Long telephoto focal lengths are unaffordable for most amateur photographers. Canon and Nikon put an end to this. Our test shows that cheap is surprisingly good.
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Most amateur photographers only know large telephoto lenses with a long focal length from the football stadium or from animal documentaries. The optics are extremely expensive and therefore unaffordable for many photographers. For example, the Nikon AF-S 800mm f/5.6 costs around 17,000 euros, the Canon RF 800mm f/5.6 even 20,000 euros.
Animal photography: stage fine art portraits with careful image composition
Wild animal photography on the doorstep: start with simple means
Photographing wild animals: the most important techniques and tips
Cat photography: Putting personalities in the right light
Dog photography: Safe portraits of animal character heads
Animal photography: Remove annoying details such as fences and halters afterwards
But price-conscious photographers have an alternative: Canon offers two fixed telephoto focal lengths with a simple structure and a fixed aperture of f/11 for its mirrorless RF system. With 600 millimeters (730 euros) and 800 millimeters (1000 euros) you are also well equipped on safari – with often greater distances to the animals. In addition, the optics remain very small for the enormous focal length.
The tube can be pushed together for transport, which makes the lenses even more compact. Due to the low light intensity of f/11, the telephoto lenses are not really suitable for fast subjects or sports shots, but thanks to the integrated image stabilizer, handheld shots also work well.