Cameras, Photography, Technical

EF&EF-S lenses for your Canon camera

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Today will see a quick post less than 500 words.!


If you are a canon user and you want to buy a lens after you finish learning from your kit lens,  we usually reach a confused status. Canon primarily classifies their lens line into two categories EF and EF-S. This article is intended for the end user/photographer without going much into the technical details.


Lets see what is EF and what are the purposes of EF lenses?

  • EF stands for Electro focus where all the communications between the camera and lens are communicated through electronic signals particularly the auto-focus communications via the gold plated contacts at the periphery of the lens mount side.
  • An EF lens comes with a red mark on the body of the lens. One needs to line up the red mark on the lens and on the camera to fix it to the body of the camera. Generally all the APS-C cameras and Full frame canon cameras comes with a red mark on the body. APS-C camera bodies comes with one more colour mark which is white in colour.
  • Whereas an EF-S lens comes with white color mark instead of red color mark on the lens.


Left side lens is EF (red colour mark) and the right side lens is EF-S (White colour mark) Image courtesy – Wikipedia.

EF-S lenses

Kindly note that the EF-S lenses are specifically made for APS-C cameras and that is exactly the reason why you can’t mount an EF-S lens on a Full frame camera body. But a EF lens can be mounted and used on a APS-C camera as well.

At first this may be confusing, but if you understand in it’s pretty easy. Here is one simple way to understand. EF-S lenses are made for APS-C cameras and EF lenses are made for Full frame cameras but EF can be mounted on APS-C cameras as well.

Simply put
All EF & EF-S lenses from Canon can be mounted and used on APS-C camera bodies. Only EF lenses can be used on Full frame bodies.

If you are looking forward to know about full frame and APS-C camera bodies, click here.



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Navanee Viswa

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