Using Canon’s EF-S 60mm Macro Lens

Conventional lenses are optimized for focus at infinity not close-up photography, but true macro lenses are corrected for close focus and can be used at infinity. Canon’s EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM has a floating optical system that lets you focus to life-size (1:1) magnification at a working distance of 4 inches allowing you to fill the frame with a subject the size of a penny. The EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM is the shortest focal length macro lens Canon offers with fully internal focusing. Autofocus is driven by a silent ring-type USM (Ultrasonic Motor) so overall length never changes during focusing.

Like other offerings in Canon’s EF-S series, the 60mm f/2.8 Macro has a rubber ring surrounding the rear element. That ring sets deeper into the camera than an EF lens and will hit the mirror if you try to mount an EF-S lens on Canon’s other digital or film SLRs. These lenses are designed to cover the smaller sensor in the APS-C sensor-size EOS cameras and allow Canon to produce high quality optics while reducing size, weight and cost.

The EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM EF 50mm f/2.5 lens uses special coatings to minimize reflections and flare and has a circular aperture design, so even when stopped down it produces natural-looking highlights. For critical focusing of still objects indoors (above) I used the EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM’s manual focus mode with the camera mounted on Adorama’s Macro Focusing Rail.

Outdoors or in less predictable environmental conditions, using autofocus is the only way to use this lens. When attached with Canon’s EOS 50D, which has 9-point AF system arranged in a wide diamond-shaped array, the most accurate focusing results will be achieved by using the camera’s multi-controller to select a specific focus point. This EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM is a wonderful multi-purpose lens that’s equally at home capturing macro images or making portraits and is an indispensable addition to any Canon system that includes an EF-S compatible camera body.

Author: Joe Farace

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