Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Canon F1 -
The First Generations of the FD Lenses

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Standard Lenses

Standard lenses have a focal length of 50mm or 55mm, and cover an angle of view of 43° to 46 . They have the widest range of applications because they deliver natural perspective. They are ideal not only for snapshots of people and scenery, but also for photography under low levels of light because of their large apertures.

The standard lenses include the FD 50mm F 1.8, the FD 50mm F 1.4 and the FD 55mm F 1.2. An additional group of special lenses includes the FD 55mm F 1.2 AL aspherical lens and the Macro FL 50mm F 3.5 lens.

When lenses have large apertures, they produce a clear and sharp image even under dim light conditions. The FD 55mm F 1.2 and the FD 55mm F 1.2 AL lenses are the most suited for shooting at night or indoors. The FD 55mm F 1.2 AL is a large aperture standard lens specially developed with an aspherical element. It provides the highest contrast over the entire area.

Alexander Dietel mailed in some info relating to his finding on his own 50mm FD: FD-lens. ".... It´s a October 1972 (datecode) version of the 50/1,4. There is no S.C. or S.S.C. writing, the lens has a chrome (silver) bajonett-ring at the front. Connecting the lens to a camera with the chrome-ring, you notice that there is no self-locking, when attached to the camera...."

Close distance photography such as copy work may be accomplished with any standard lens, but there is one specially designed for this type of work, the Macro Canon FL 50mm F 3.5 lens for macrophotography. Together with accessories in the Canon system, it extends the possibilities of photography.

Furthermore, the popular FD 50mm F 1.8 and the FD 50mm F 1.4 lenses have a distance coupling pin for a Flash-Auto Ring which, when used with the Speedlite 133D, automatically controls the flash.



The Canon FD 55mm F 1.2 AL Lens

Optical group.jpg Canon FD 55mm F1.2AL
Lens Composition: 6 components 8 elements.
Picture angle : 43 degrees diagonal, 36 horizontal and perpendicular 25 degrees.
Coating: Super spectra
Aperture Scale: 1.2, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16.
Distance Scale: 0.6 to 10 meters (2 to 30 feet).
Hood: S-58.
Filter diameter: 58mm.
Length x Maximum diameter/weight: 55mm x
75.7mm (2-3/16" x 3")/605 grams (1 lb. 7 oz.).


Conventional spherical lenses produce spherical aberration or blurred image points, because light rays passing through outer lens areas do not converge at exactly the same point as those near the optical axis due to the different refraction characteristics. A related problem with large-aperture lenses is flare, or stray light that enters the lens and causes ghosting or halo effects. Setting smaller apertures can minimize this problem, but not eliminate it. Use of aspherical elements eliminates these drawbacks by reducing light ray refraction steepness near the lens edges and converging the light rays at a common focal point. A margin of error of less that one micron in manufacturing precision is necessary to be able to add an aspherical surface to the composition of a lens. For this reason, it had been extremely difficult to achieve such a surface up to now.

This is a large aperture standard lens with an aspherical surface, which provides the highest image delineation even at full aperture opening under dim light conditions. Besides, this lens incorporates the Floating System which makes shooting at short distances aberration free. Thus, a stabilized image is obtained throughout the entire focusing range, and the image focused in the viewfinder can be recorded exactly as it is seen through the viewfinder.

In order to assure even more perfection, Super Spectra Coating was applied to this lens to prevent ghosts.

Canon calls it "the perfect lens" because of the sharpness it provides under any photographic conditions.

The Canon FD 50mm F 1.8 Lens



This standard lens is an advanced adaptation of the optical system in Canon's most popular standard FL 50mm F 1.8 lens. It has superior contrast and high image delineation qualities, from the center to the corner areas, particularly at medium apertures. It is a lens for all purposes with a stable delineation power in close distance photography. It has a distance coupling pin for the CAT system.

FD 50mm f1.4's optical construction.

Canon FD 50mm F1.4
Lens Composition: 6 components, 7 elements.
Picture Angle: Diagonal 46, horizontal 39, and
perpendicular 26°.
Coating: Spectra.
Aperture Scale: 1.4, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 16.
Distance Scale: 0.45 to 10 meters (1.5 to 30 feet).
Hood: S-55.
Filter Diameter: 55mm.
Length x Maximum Diameter/Weight: 49mm x
66.2mm (1-15/16" x 2-518-)1360 grams (13 oz.).


The Canon FD 50mm F 1.4 Lens It is an advanced type of standard lens based on the highly reputed FL 50mm F 1.4 lens design. Clear images are obtained both stopped down and at ful l aperture. It has a distance coupling pin for the CAT system.


The Canon FD 55mm F 1.2 Lens


This is a standard large aperture lens based on the optical arrangement of the F L 55mm F 1.2. Notwithstanding its large aperture, it has a splendid reputation for high contrast and stabilized image delineation at full aperture opening. Because of its fast lens speed of F 1.2, it provides high image quality in low light levels.

Its optical performance is similar to the FD 50mm F 1.4 but it is more advanced and has a faster speed. Moreover, Canon has achieved compensation for various aberrations in it, such as spherical aberration and conia. Its evenness of illumination is outstanding.

Spec: Mount: Canon FD mount (bayonet type). Mount Signal: Preset aperture lever, autc aperture lever, full aperture signal pin, EE pin, reserve signal pin. Light Metering Function: Both full apertu stopped down. Lens Composition: 5 components and 7 ele Picture Angle: Diagonal 43, horizontal 3 perpendicular 25°. Coating: Super Spectra. Aperture Scale: 1.2, 2, 2.8, 4, 5.6, 8, 11, 1 Distance Scale: 0.6 to 10 meters (2 to 30 f' Hood: S-58. Filter Diameter: 58mm. Length x Maximum Diameter/Weight: 5 x 75.8mm (2-1/16" x 3") / 560 grams

The Canon FD 50mm F 3.5 Macro Lens

This lens has extremely high resolving power and is used for photography at very close distance. It will replace the conventional FL 50mm F 3.5 Macro lens.

By means of a newly designed optical system, its performance has been considerably improved. Also it will be possible to couple it to Canon's new Macro Speedlite 120A.


The Bellows FLM 100mm F 4 Lens (Click here for a view)

The FLM 100mm F 4 lens is a short mount lens with automatic aperture designed to be used exclusively with BellowsFL, and then it expands possibilities from general photography to close-ups and macrophotography. It focuses continuously from infinity to macro distances.

It has 5 elements in 3 components which give it a high resolving power It corrects aberration most satisfactorily making its color balance truly perfect, with high contrast and sharpness throughout the entire image plane. It has double the focal length of a standard lens, so there is more space available for lighting, etc., without disturbing the shooting operation. Besides, its 100mm focal length delivers natural perspective.

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