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Canon’s new RF teleconverters don’t work with the RF 70-200mm f/2.8

Canon Extender RF 1.4x and Extender RF 2x
(Image credit: Canon)

After debuting them in February, Canon has launched its Extender RF 1.4x and Extender RF 2x teleconverters for the EOS R family of cameras. However, their reception has been somewhat dampened by their compromised compatibility with current RF lenses.  

Teleconverters are a great way to shoot at longer focal lengths, by extending the reach of your existing telephoto lenses, without the extra cost of investing in a whole new lens. This is especially useful with a young ecosystem like Canon’s full-frame mirrorless lineup.

These two new Extenders are compatible with three RF optics; unfortunately, however, none of them is the Canon RF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USM, which is a lens that many photographers would want to use with a teleconverter with. 

The only lenses that are compatible with the Extenders are the trio of super telephotos that have just been announced: the Canon RF 600mm f/11 IS STM and Canon RF 800mm f/11 IS STM and Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7/1 L IS USM.

Again, however, there are compatibility caveats. Such is the physical construction of the latter lens that both teleconverters can only be used at focal lengths between 300-500mm. While the adapters are smaller than their EF counterparts, the interior parts protrude and prevent them working below 300mm. 

The full compatibility and focal length / aperture conversion is as follows: 

RF lenswith Extender RF 1.4xwith Extender RF 2x
Canon RF 600mm f/11 IS STM840mm f/161,200mm f/22
Canon RF 800mm f/11 IS STM1,120mm f/161,600mm f/22
Canon RF 100-500mm f/4.5-7/1 L IS USM420-700mm f/8-10600-1,000mm f/11-14
Canon RF 70-200mm f/2.8 IS USMNot compatibleNot compatible
Canon RF 28-70mm F2 L USMNot compatibleNot compatible

While it’s obviously disappointing that the 70-200mm won’t work at all with the teleconverters, and the 100-500mm only half works, both the 600mm and 800mm primes are fully compatible – and the prospect of a 1,600mm focal length on an R-system camera remains incredibly exciting. 

Scheduled to go on sale from the end of July, the Extender RF 1.4x will cost $499.99/ £559 (AU$1,010) while the Extender RF 2x will carry a $599.99 / £699 (AU$1,263) price tag.

Pre-order the Extender RF 2x at B&H Photo
Pre-order the Extender RF 2x at Wex Photo Video

Pre-order the Extender RF 1.4x at B&H Photo
Pre-order the Extender RF 1.4x at Wex Photo Video

Read more: 

Hands on: Canon EOS R5 review
Hands on: Canon EOS R6 review
Best Canon RF lenses: the best lens for Canon EOS R5, R6, R and RP