In a world of digital photography, there are still plenty of people who appreciate the clarity and precision of real film. While the market for 35mm cameras and their accessories has contracted considerably, it will probably never go away. If you like shooting on film yourself, you can get great deals on a Canon FD lens by shopping online.
Canon’s FD Mount
Even though Canon hasn’t produced a camera with an FD mount since 1992, demand for the best FD-format lenses remains strong. Canon was a dominant force in the high-quality camera market throughout the 70s and 80s – the FD mount’s heyday – and sold millions of cameras around the world. With 134 different Canon lenses and countless compatible third-party products, the market in new and used FD lenses is a vast one.
When you buy a Canon FD lens, make sure you know whether you’re getting new or used equipment. You’ll have to verify the quality of a used lens carefully to make sure that it will meet your needs. You’re probably also aware that FD lenses are all manual focus. It was the introduction of autofocus that caused Canon to discontinue the FD mount.
Selected Canon FD Lenses
50mm FD lenses are some of the most popular in the secondhand market. Over the years, Canon made several versions of the 50mm lens, including an f/1.2 and an f/1.8. The difference between the cost of the two shows how varied the lens market can be. The common f/1.8 is eminently affordable, usually costing less than an equivalent modern lens. The rare f/1.2 regularly sells for hundreds of dollars.
Buying a used FD lens is often a cheap way to get terrific performance. The 7-210 f/4.0 Zoom Lens is a great example. This 9-group, 12-element lens offers fast and accurate manual focusing across a huge range, and good used examples are usually very affordable.
Don’t assume that you need a vintage Canon camera to make use of all these terrific lenses. Plenty of manufacturers have produced adapters that you can use to mount an FD lens on a newer camera. Fotasy’s NAFD Pro FD / FL to NEX Adapter, for instance, lets you use an FD lens on any camera that has Sony’s E-Mount NEX system. Effective adapters are usually inexpensive, but you should still double-check to make sure a given adapter will fit your camera before buying it.
Whether you’re a devotee of film using a classic 20th-century camera or a budget-conscious shooter using an adapter to mount a Canon FD lens on a modern DSLR, you can get legendary Canon performance at bargain prices thanks to the bustling online trade in used FD lenses.