Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens

Medium telephoto lens for Canon EOS SLR cameras

  • Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens



Our take on the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens

by Julie Govan

Pair Canon's superbly built EF 85mm f/1.8 lens with your Canon SLR, and it may become your go-to lens. This "prime" or fixed-length lens delivers sharp, detailed images, with lovely background blur. Its large maximum aperture of f/1.8 takes in tons of light, letting you "freeze" moving subjects, even when shooting indoors without a flash. And with Canon's built-in Ultrasonic Motor (USM), you get extremely rapid, accurate autofocus, so you never miss a shot. If you need an ultra-responsive lens that snaps exceptional candids, yet has enough telephoto power to capture action scenes in the mid-distance, you've found it.


  • 85mm f/1.8 standard lens
  • compatible with all Canon digital and film EOS SLR cameras
  • effective focal length:
    • 85mm with full-frame sensor digital or 35mm film cameras
    • 136mm with APS-C sensor cameras
  • minimum focus distance: 2.8'
  • minimum aperture: f/22
  • Ultrasonic Motor (USM) for quiet, rapid autofocus
  • lens construction: 9 elements in 7 groups
  • diaphragm blades: 8
  • attachment/filter size: 58mm
  • lens is 3" in diameter, 3-3/16"" long
  • weight: 14.9 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
Supplied Accessories:
  • front and rear lens caps

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
Brand Compatibility
Image Stabilization
Focal Length
85 mm
Maximum Aperture
Parts Warranty
1 Year
Labor Warranty
1 Year
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • EF-85 mm f/1.8 USM lens
  • Lens cap (installed)
  • Back cover (installed)
  • Limited warranty card
  • Multi-lingual Manual

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.


Overview: Canon Standard and Medium Telephoto lenses provides a natural angle of view and perspective. This Standard and Medium Telephoto Lens provides you with the image closest to how your eye perceives the subject and are excellent for portraits and for giving images a natural depth of field. The Canon EF85mm f/1.8 USM is a highly practical medium telephoto lens with superb delineation and portability. The lens provides images that are sharp and clear at all apertures. Through computer simulations, the lens has been designed to give beautiful background blur. Since the front lens group does not rotate during focusing, special filter effects are not affected.

Compatibility: The EF85mm f/1.8 USM is an EF Canon lens which means it is compatible with all Canon digital SLRs (those that accept EF and  EF-S lenses, plus those that accept EF only; which would be the Full-frame EOS 5D Mark II), as well as Canon EOS film SLRs.

Ultrasonic Motor (USM): With the Ultrasonic Motor (USM), you can expect fast and quiet focusing capability.

Auto/Manual Focus: To shoot in Autofocus mode, set the focus mode switch on the lens to "AF". To manually focus the camera, set the switch to "MF", and focus by turning the focusing ring. The focusing ring always works, regardless of the focus mode.

Lens Construction: The Canon EF85mm f/1.8 USM lens features a lens construction with 9 elements in 7 groups.

Diagonal Angle Of View: This Canon telephoto lens provides a diagonal angle of view of 28°, 30'.

Optional Filters: You can attach filters to the filter mounting thread on the front of the lens.

See Digital SLR Cameras that work with this item

Product reviews from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Quick impressions from the Lab

Comment by Zak Billmeier Staff Writer - Creative,

Awesome, compact, and fast short telephoto

Written by Zak Billmeier, Staff Writer - Creative, on 2/23/2012 2:55:00 PM

This is one of my favorite Canon lenses, and I use it extensively. It's got a lot going for it: it's inexpensive, it's pretty fast, and it's small. It has almost no distortion, so it's great for headshots.

I have used it for shooting indoor sports, and it's great for snapping shots at a party because you can keep your distance. The lens is sharp once you begin to stop it down a little, and pretty good wide open. I can't recommend it enough.

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Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens Reviews

Average Customer Review:

7 people say:

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4 out of 5

great outdoor lens

Written By girlphoto22, charlottesville,va on Monday, January 06, 2014
I switched from nikon to canon and I love my new 5d mark iii. I'm pretty impressed with this lens. It takes great outdoor shots, however I am deducting one star for its indoor performance. Since an 85 mm is like a 50mm on a crop (what I was moving up from) my 50 mm 1.8 seemed to do much better indoors in lower light situations.
good outdoor portrait lens
not as good as my 50mm 1.8 in low light
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5 out of 5

Very nice lens

Written By Johnny, Marfa, texas on Monday, July 22, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I'm a novice photographer so my opinion is limited as far as the technical jargon regarding this lens or photography. I can say this though, the lens is noticeably different in that the photos are crisper, cleaner and much clearer! So far I am enjoying the results. I am learning the functions of the camera and am very happy I purchased this lens!
Very nice photos. Easy to use and very affordable!
No cons that I can tell so far.
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5 out of 5


Written By Al, New port Richey, Fl on Tuesday, April 02, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
I am an amateur photographer. I upgraded my camera to a Canon D7 and for my Portrait photos , I decided to buy and try the Canon 85mm 1.8 Lens. The lens is not heavy and the resulting photos are so sharp and clear that I am going to make this my walk around lens Also, I am able to fade the background so that the subject appears to almost step out of the photo.
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5 out of 5

EF 85MM lens - GREAT

Written By Richard, Texas on Tuesday, December 04, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
The quality of build and the pictures taken with this lens are spectacular! Not a bad picture, even in low light situations. The low F stop allows lots of control with depth. Couldn't be happier.
Low light. Depth of field. Build quality
none so far
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5 out of 5

Wonderful little gem.

Written By Anonymous, Orlando, FL on Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
Love this lens. Actually, it's my fav one. Love best for portrait shots. The Bokeh is Awesome. Love the sharpness and tri-dimensionality effect from 1.8 aperture. :)
Price, Weight, Bokeh
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5 out of 5

Good Portrait Lens

Written By undrgnd40, Minnesota on Sunday, February 19, 2012
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
A satisfyingly good lens for the price. A large maximum aperture makes this lens a good choice for indoor photography where lighting isn't always ideal. The focal length of this lens is good for portraits. The ultrasonic motor is fast focusing and quiet. I've found that nearly all the pics I take with this lens turn out very sharp. It's a very good alternative to the more expensive "L" series 85mm prime.
Picture quality, weight and size are perfect.
Have to buy lens hood separately.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens

Written By JR, Guam on Saturday, May 14, 2011
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
The Canon 85mm f/1.8 is an excellent lens offering photos of great quality. I
knew that it would be difficult to do group shots if you don't have a lot of space,
but I bought it specifically for portrait shots and it's nice that you don't have to be
so close to your subject which makes them feel a lot more comfortable! I
ordered from Crutchfield on a Saturday night and I received the lens by Friday
here on Guam! I was utterly surprised by the speedy delivery!
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Add accessories for the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens

Protect your lens from minor bumps and scratches. Lens filters can reduce reflections or glare, or increase contrast on your shots. See all categories & accessories

Hoya EVO UV Filter Protective filter for compatible camera lenses (58mm)
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Hoya Alpha UV Filter Protective filter for compatible digital camera lenses (58mm)
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Hoya Lens Hood For compatible camera lenses (58mm)
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BlackRapid LensBling for Canon Lenses High-visibility identifier lens caps (85mm)
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Lowepro Lens Case 9cm x 9cm Case for standard zoom lenses
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Nikon Micro Fiber Cleaning Cloth Cleaning cloth for delicate surfaces
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SideKick™ by LensPen® Touchscreen cleaning kit
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OSN Lens Pen Hurricane Blower Blower for camera lenses, filters, sensors and SLR mirrors
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LensPen® DSLR Pro Kit Cleaning tools for lenses, lens filters, and viewfinders
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Nikon Fog Eliminator 3-Pack Reusable cleaning cloth for fog resistance on lens surfaces
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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Lens, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_280EF85USM/Canon-EF-85mm-f-1-8-USM-Lens.html ).

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