Exactly How Many Canon EF Lens Models Were There? [COMPLETE LIST]

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We know that Canon produced around 140 million EF lenses between 1987 and 2019, at which time, production of new Canon RF lenses began to ramp up and EF lens models began to be discontinued one by one. In February 2021, Canon announced that they had produced 150 million EF+RF lenses, but they did not divulge the split between the two lens mounts. Given their new focus on the RF mount, we may never know an EF lens production number more exact than somewhere between 140 and 150 million.

As a Canon shooter for more than a decade at the beginning of my professional career, I was aware of these crazy numbers. What I wasn’t sure about was exactly how many different lens models there had been in the life of the EF lens mount from 1987 to 2020. On a rainy Sunday afternoon, I decided to figure it out.

Fact: EF stands for Electro-Focus

What Is the Final Model Count?

It turns out that the answer to this question is a little tricky. Between 1987 and 2020, Canon launched 211 different EF or EF-S lenses to the public. If anyone stopped me and asked me this question on the street, I’d say 211 lenses is the simple answer.

This number is made up of 20 EF-S lenses for APS-C cameras, and 191 EF lenses. I decided to combine the two together to get to 211 because that is what Canon does when they announce their own numbers. EF-S lenses are a subset of EF lenses, and the “140 million EF lenses sold” includes both EF and EF-S lenses as all of these lenses use the same EF mount.

I have also included all of Canon’s Cinema EOS lenses that were available with an EF mount. This includes 14 prime lenses with an EF mount, 2 zooms with an EF mount and 7 zoom lenses that were available with either an EF or a PL mount. Only the EF versions of the zooms were included in the final tally.

Canon EF-Mount cinema lenses can be used on any Canon DSLR that has an EF mount, or any RF-Mount mirrorless camera with an EF-RF adapter.

The decision to include the Cinema EOS lenses in the tally was one I stopped to think about. For many people, it will seem irrelevant because these lenses can be incredibly expensive (up to $70,000 for the cine zooms). That said, I do know of several stills photographers who use the EF-Mount cine primes which come in at the much more reasonable price of around $4000. Canon also chooses to include the Cinema EOS lenses in their overall EF lens sales figures.

I did not include the 6 different EF extenders (teleconverters) in this tally of 211 EF lenses. They do not have a focal length, so I do not count them as camera lenses. I don’t think anyone would argue with me on that point, but it’s not clear whether Canon includes them in their EF lens sales figures. They do appear in the promotional images distributed whenever Canon hit notable EF lens sales figures, so perhaps Canon and I disagree on this point.

I chose to ignore the 7 EF-M lenses for Canon’s seemingly defunct mirrorless EOS M cameras. Unlike EF-S lenses, which actually use the regular EF mount, EF-M lenses use a smaller, distinctly different lens mount. I do not consider these lenses to be a subset of EF lenses in the same way as EF-S lenses.

I’m also choosing to ignore the incredibly rare EF 300mm f/1.8 lens. We know this lens exists, but the current thinking is that only four were ever made, and crucially, they were not publicly available.

When I compiled the list of lenses and their release dates that you see further down the page, I also discovered that some lenses were only available in certain parts of the world. For example, in the early years of EF lens production, it was common to produce a lens using standard AF motors, and then produce a version of the same lens that used more expensive USM AF motors.

In most cases, only one of these versions would be sold in a specific global market. When deciding on the tally of 211 total EF lenses, I did choose to include all of these versions because they were all publicly available. And theoretically, you could purchase any of them if you travelled to that different market or ordered the lens online.

EF Lens Models Summary

  • 211 publicly available lenses with an EF mount
  • 166 EF intended for stills cameras
  • 20 EF-S intended for stills cameras
  • 188 total EF lenses intended for stills cameras
  • 7 EF mount cinema primes
  • 7 EF mount Sumire cinema primes
  • 9 EF mount cinema zooms
  • 1 EF lens not available to the general public (not included in 211 lens tally)
  • 6 versions of EF lens extenders (not included in 211 lens tally)

If you disagree with this or think I have missed something, please leave a comment!

Notable EF Lens Milestones

Canon led the way in many areas of photographic lens design. These are some of the notable, even iconic lenses from the vast EF lens catalogue.

  • March 1987 – First EOS camera and first EF lenses (EF 35-105mm f/3.5-4.5, EF 35-70mm f/3.5-4.5, EF 50mm f/1.8)
  • November 1987 – First lens with an Ultrasonic Motor (EF 300mm f/2.8 L USM)
  • January 1993 – First DSLR lens with 10X zoom factor (EF 35-350mm f/3.5-5.6L USM)
  • May 1993 – First Super UD Ultra Low Dispersion elements for chromatic aberration correction (EF 400mm f/5.6L USM)
  • September 1995 – First lens with image stabilization (EF 75-300mm f4-5.6 IS USM)
  • March 1997 – First L Series lens with image stabilization (EF 300mm f/4L IS USM)
  • September 2001 – First lens with diffractive optics (EF 400mm f4 DO IS USM)
  • August 2003 – First EF-S lenses for APS-C digital SLRs (EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6, F-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM)
  • December 2008 – First lens with SWC Subwavelength Coating to minimize reflections (EF 24mm f1.4L II USM)
  • October 2009 – First lens with Hybrid IS (EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM)
  • August 2010 – First lens with fluorine anti smear coating for easy cleaning (EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM)
  • July 2011 – First fisheye zoom lens (EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM)
  • April 2011 – First EF cinema primes and zoom lenses
  • February 2012 – First wide-angle lense with image stabilization (EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM, EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM)
  • May 2013 – First Super-Telephoto lens with a built-in extender (EF 200-400mm f4L IS USM Extender 1.4x)
  • February 2015 – Fist zoom lens with 11mm focal length (EF 11-24mm f4L USM)
  • August 2015 – First lens with BR Blue Spectrum Refractive Optics to minimize chromatic aberration (EF 35mm f/1.4 L II)

Canon EF and EF-S Lens Release Dates in Order

Canon introduced the final new EF stills lenses in September 2018 and the final Cinema EOS lens with an EF mount in April 2020. What follows is a timeline of the EF lens releases.

Possible Date Discrepancies

As best as I can, I have tried to track down the exact dates on which these EF lenses were first unveiled to the world. For lenses launched while the internet was thriving, this was relatively easy as press releases can still be unearthed. Earlier lenses were more difficult.

While Canon does maintain a useful online museum of their lenses, the listed dates for most of their lenses are demonstrably incorrect. Or at least they do not reflect the launch date of the lens. Perhaps their dates reflect the shipping dates of these lenses to stores? It’s hard to say. Their list omits entire lenses, so perhaps it is simply inaccurate. Nonetheless, I have tried as best I can to construct the EF lens timeline and prioritize actual launch dates wherever that information was available.

Recommended Reading: If you have ever wondered what all of the additional alphanumeric characters mean in the Canon EF and EF-S lens names, things like USM, A, DO, DC, BR, CN-E I recommend reading our guide to Canon lens terminology and abbreviations for a thorough explanation.

#Lens ModelLaunched (DD/MM/YY)
2020
211CINE-SERVO 25-250mm T2.95-3.9520/04/20
2019
210CN-E 14mm T3.1 FP X03/04/19
209CN-E 20mm T1.5 FP X03/04/19
208CN-E 24mm T1.5 FP X03/04/19
207CN-E 35mm T1.5 FP X03/04/19
206CN-E 50mm T1.3 FP X03/04/19
205CN-E 85mm T1.3 FP X03/04/19
204CN-E135mm T2.2 FP X03/04/19
2018
203EF 600mm F/4 L IS III05/09/18
202EF 400mm f/2.8 L IS III05/09/18
201EF 70-200mm f/4 L IS II06/06/18
200EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS III06/06/18
199CN-E 20mm T1.5 L F28/03/18
2017
198EF 85mm f/1.4 L IS USM29/08/17
197TS-E 50mm f/2.8 L Macro29/08/17
196TS-E 90mm f/2.8 L Macro29/08/17
195TS-E 135mm f/4 L Macro29/08/17
194CN-E 70-200mm T4.4 L IS KAS S20/04/17
193EF-S 35mm f/2.8 Macro IS STM04/04/17
192EF-S 18-55mm f/4-5.6 STM14/02/17
2016
191EF 70-300 F4-5.6 IS II USM15/09/16
190EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM25/08/16
189EF 24-105mm f/4L IS II USM25/08/16
188CN-E 18-80mm T4.4L IS KAS S13/04/16
187EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM18/02/16
2015
186EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM27/08/15
185EF 50mm f/1.8 STM11/05/15
184EF 11-24mm F/4L USM05/02/15
2014
183EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM10/11/14
182CINE-SERVO 50-1000mm T5.0-8.916/10/14
181EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM15/09/14
180EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM15/09/14
179EF 24-105mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM15/09/14
178EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM13/05/14
177EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM13/05/14
176CINE-SERVO 17-120mm T2.9502/04/14
2013
175EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM22/08/13
174EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4X14/05/13
173CN-E 35mm T1.5 L F03/04/13
172EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM21/03/13
171CN-E 14mm T3.1 L F10/01/13
170CN-E 135mm T2.2 L F10/01/13
2012
169EF 35mm f/2 IS USM05/11/12
168EF 24-70mm f/4L IS USM05/11/12
167EF 40mm f/2.8 STM08/06/12
166EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM08/06/12
165CN-E 15.5-47mm T2.8 L S14/04/12
164CN-E 30-105mm T2.8 L S14/04/12
163EF 24-70 f/2.8L II USM07/02/12
162EF 24mm f/2.8 IS USM07/02/12
161EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM07/02/12
2011
160CN-E 30–300mm T2.95–3.7 L S04/11/11
159CN-E 14.5–60mm T2.6 L S04/11/11
158CN-E 85mm T1.3 L F04/11/11
157CN-E 50mm T1.3 L F04/11/11
156CN-E 24mm T1.5 L F04/11/11
155EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II13/06/11
154EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II07/02/11
153EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 III07/02/11
152EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM07/02/11
151EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM07/02/11
2010
N/AExtender EF 1.4X III26/08/10
N/AExtender EF 2x III26/08/10
150EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM26/08/10
149EF 300mm f/2.8 L IS II USM26/08/10
148EF 400mm f/2.8 L IS II USM26/08/10
147EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM26/08/10
146EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM05/01/10
2009
145EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM01/09/09
144EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS01/09/09
143EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM01/09/09
142TS-E 17mm f/4L17/02/09
141TS-E 24mm f/3.5L II17/02/09
2008
140EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM17/09/08
139EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS26/08/08
138EF 800mm f/5.6L IS USM23/01/08
137EF 200mm f/2L IS USM23/01/08
2007
136EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS20/08/07
135EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM20/08/07
134EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS20/08/07
133EF 16-35 mm f/2.8L II USM22/02/07
2006
132EF 50mm f/1.2L USM24/08/06
131EF 70-200mm f/4L IS USM24/08/06
130EF-S 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM21/02/06
129EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM21/02/06
2005
128EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM22/08/05
127EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM22/08/05
126EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro USM17/02/05
125EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II USM17/02/05
124EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II17/02/05
2004
123EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM19/08/04
122EF 28-90mm f/4-5.6 IIISeptember 2004
121EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM19/08/04
120EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM29/01/04
119EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6L IS USM29/01/04
2003
118EF 28-90mm f/4-5.6 IISeptember 2003
117EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.620/08/03
116EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM20/08/03
115EF 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6 II USM20/08/03
114EF 17-40 f/4L USM27/02/03
2002
113EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM24/09/02
112EF 90-300mm f/4.5-5.6 USMSeptember 2002
111EF 90-300mm f/4.5-5.6September 2002
110EF 28-90mm f/4-5.6 II USMSeptember 2002
109EF 28-105mm f/4-5.6 USMSeptember 2002
108EF 28-105mm f/4-5.6September 2002
2001
107EF 16-35mm f/2.8L USM26/09/01
106EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM01/08/01
N/AExtender EF2X IIMarch 2001
N/AExtender EF1.4X IIMarch 2001
2000
105EF 400mm f/4 DO IS USM06/09/00
104EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 II USMOctober 2000
103EF 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6 USMSeptember 2000
102EF 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6September 2000
101EF 28-90mm f/4-5.6 USMSeptember 2000
100EF28-90mm f/4-5.6September 2000
99EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USMMarch 2000
1999
98EF 70-200mm f/4L USMSeptember 1999
97EF 600mm f/4L IS USMSeptember 1999
96EF 400mm f/2.8L IS USMSeptember 1999
95MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1-5x MacroSeptember 1999
94EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USMJuly 1999
93EF 500mm f/4L IS USMJuly 1999
92EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IIIApril 1999
91EF 75-300mm f/4.0-5.6 III USMApril 1999
90EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 V USMApril 1999
89EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 IIApril 1999
1998
88EF 35mm f/1.4L USMDecember 1998
87EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USMNovember 1998
86EF 22-55mm f/4-5.6 USMMarch 1998
85EF 55-200mm f/4.5-5.6 USMMarch 1998
84EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USMFebruary 1998
1997
83 EF 24mm f/1.4L USMDecember 1997
82EF 300mm f/4.0L IS USMMarch 1997
1996
81EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 IV USMSeptember 1996
80EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6September 1996
79EF 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5 USMSeptember 1996
78EF 17-35mm f/2.8L USMApril 1996
77EF 135mm f/2.0L USMApril 1996
76EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro USMApril 1996
75EF 200mm f/2.8L II USMMarch 1996
74EF 400mm f/2.8L II USMMarch 1996
1995
73EF 28mm f/1.8 USMSeptember 1995
72EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USMSeptember 1995
71EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 III USMAugust 1995
70EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IIJuly 1995
69EF 80-200mm f/4.5-5.6 IIMarch 1995
68EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 II USMMarch 1995
67EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 II USMMarch 1995
66EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USMMarch 1995
65EF 35-80mm f/4-5.6 IIIMarch 1995
64EF 38-76mm f/4.5-5.6February 1995
1993
63EF 28-70mm f/2.8L USMNovember 1993
62EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 II USMOctober 1993
61EF 35-80mm f/4-5.6 IISeptember 1993
60EF 1200mm f/5.6L USMJuly 1993
59EF 50mm f/1.4 USMJune 1993
58EF 400mm f/5.6L USMMay 1993
57EF 20-35mm f/3.5-4.5 USMMarch 1993
56EF 35-350mm f/3.5-5.6L USMJanuary 1993
1992
55EF 28-105mm f/3.5-4.5 USMNovember 1992
54EF 85mm f/1.8 USMJuly 1992
53EF 20mm f/2.8 USMJune 1992
52EF 80-200mm f/4.5-5.6 USMJune 1992
51EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 USMJune 1992
50EF 35-105mm f/4.5-5.6 USMJune 1992
49EF 35-80mm f/4-5.6 USMApril 1992
48EF 500mm f/4.5L USMMarch 1992
1991
47EF 14mm f/2.8L USMDecember 1991
46EF 300mm f/4L USMDecember 1991
45EF 200mm f/2.8L USMDecember 1991
44EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 USMOctober 1991
43EF 100mm f/2 USMOctober 1991
42EF 400mm f/2.8L USMApril 1991
41EF 35-105mm f/4.5-5.6April 1991
40TS-E 90mm f/2.8April 1991
39TS-E 45mm f/2.8April 1991
38TS-E 24mm f/3.5April 1991
37EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6March 1991
1990
36EF 50mm f/1.8 IIDecember 1990
35EF 80-200mm f/4.5-5.6October 1990
34EF 35mm f/2October 1990
33EF 35-80mm f/4-5.6September 1990
32EF 70-210mm f/3.5-4.5 USMJune 1990
31EF 100-300mm f/4.5-5.6 USMJune 1990
30EF 100-300mm f/4.5-5.6 USMJune 1990
29EF 100mm f/2.8 MacroApril 1990
28EF 35-80mm f/4-5.6 PZMarch 1990
27EF 35-135mm f/4-5.6 USMMarch 1990
1989
26EF 20-35mm f/2.8LSeptember 1989
25EF 80-200mm f/2.8LSeptember 1989
24EF 85mm f/1.2L USMSeptember 1989
23EF 50mm f/1.0L USMSeptember 1989
22EF 28-80mm f/2.8-4L USMApril 1989
1988
21EF 100-200mm f/4.5ANovember 1988
20EF 24mm f/2.8November 1988
19EF 200mm f/1.8L USMNovember 1988
18EF 600mm f/4L USMNovember 1988
N/AEF 1.4X ExtenderNovember 1988
17EF 35-70mm f/3.5-4.5AOctober 1988
16EF 35-135mm f/3.5-4.5June 1988
15EF 50-200mm f/3.5-4.5 LJune 1988
14EF 28-70mm f/3.5-4.5 IIJune 1988
1987
13EF 50-200mm f/3.5-4.5December 1987
12EF 50mm f/2.5 Compact MacroDecember 1987
11EF 28-70mm f/3.5-4.5November 1987
10EF 300mm f/2.8L USMNovember 1987
9EF 135mm f/2.8 with SoftfocusOctober 1987
N/AEF 2X ExtenderOctober 1987
8EF 100–300mm f/5.6LJune 1987
7EF 70-210mm f/4May 1987
6EF 28mm f/2.8April 1987
5EF 15mm f/2.8 FisheyeApril 1987
4EF 100–300 mm f/5.6March 1987
3EF 35-70mm f/3.5-4.5March 1987
2EF 35-105mm f/3.5-4.5March 1987
1EF 50mm f/1.8March 1987

Thoughts on this List

When I compiled this list, I found it particularly interesting to go back to the beginning of the EF lens timeline and see the rate at which Canon was releasing lenses for the EF mount in its initial years. It was a rapid expansion! It’s also interesting to note how what we consider now to be standard zoom ranges, such as 16-35mm, 24-70mm and 70-200mm have evolved. At the birth of the EF lens lineup, you were far more likely to find lenses with ranges such as 20-35mm, 28-70mm and 70-210mm. There were even a few unusual focal ranges, such as a 50-200mm L Series lens that I would love to see again in the Canon lens lineup and an oddball 38-76mm! Not to mention the legendary 35-350mm L Series zoom.

Photo of author

Dan Carr

Professional photographer based in Yukon, Canada, and founder of Shutter Muse. His editorial work has been featured in publications all over the world, and his commercial clients include brands such as Nike, Apple, Adobe and Red Bull.

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4 thoughts on “Exactly How Many Canon EF Lens Models Were There? [COMPLETE LIST]”

  1. Pretty cool listing. Thanks for putting this together, Dan.
    Wasn‘t there also an EF 50 f/0.95L? I could not find that in your list. If I remember well, it was not very successful because what it offered in terms aperture speed it lacked in sharpness to the degree that it was not really usable wide open, which kind of defeted its purpose. It was still a pretty cool record, wasn‘t it?

    Reply
    • Canon did make a 50mm 0.95, but it was not for the EF mount. I’m not sure exactly what it was, but it was in the 60s or 70s. You might be thinking of the EF 50mm f/1.0 which is on the list in September 1989.

      Reply
  2. That is some impressive tallying that you have done, here. Comparing the release of Canon lenses to other brands and types, year-to-year, (I only know a little bit and is all about other brands) is quite interesting.

    Reply
    • At some point, I might get around to compiling a similar list for Nikon’s F Mount. I would be curious to compare the two. As well as comparing the rollout of the EF mount with the rollout of the new RF mount.

      Reply

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