Tired Of Waiting for Canon's EF-to-RF Lens Mount Adapter? This Commlite Adapter Could Be the Perfect Stopgap

Tired Of Waiting for Canon's EF-to-RF Lens Mount Adapter? This Commlite Adapter Could Be the Perfect Stopgap

If you've grown tired of waiting for Canon's native EF/EF-S to RF lens mount adapter to become available, this cheap adapter might be the perfect stopgap alternative. It works on both Canon's native lenses and third-party lenses. Read on to see all the lenses I tested successfully with it.

When I bought the Canon EOS R5 last year, I also ordered a couple of RF lenses that I thought would pretty much cover all of my needs through the initial stages of ownership. To date, those lenses, including the 24-105mm RF f/4L and the 100-500mm RF f/4.5-7.1L, have been almost everything that I’ve really needed and have worked exceptionally well. However, that didn’t remove the fact that since moving to a mirrorless system with a different mount, I had become the proud owner of more than a dozen lenses that were sitting idle and couldn’t be used with my EOS R5. And as time went by, I found myself wanting to use many of my old EF lenses with my new mirrorless system. Unfortunately, that was out of the question for much longer than I'd anticipated.

Why? Because at the time of ordering my new EOS R5 camera and RF lenses, I was unable to get one of Canon’s native EF-to-RF lens mount adapters. No worries, I thought at the time, as the adapters would become available very soon. They must, I opined, because surely, there were a lot of people in a similar position to me with a bunch of EF mount lenses they'd accumulated over the years. Each day, I would check the various websites in Japan and abroad and wait for a notification telling me that the adapters were now in stock and available. Yet, days became weeks and weeks became months. And now, here we are almost a year after I first ordered my new system, and the native Canon adapters are still unavailable on almost every website around the world, including here in Japan.

Thus, I finally let go of the belief that Canon will release more adapters any time in the near future and searched for an alternative I could use in the meantime. I didn’t particularly want to spend any considerable money because my intention is still to get the native adapters when they finally become available. In searching for something cheap and efficient as a stopgap, I came across the Commlite adapter. It's under $60 and facilitates the use of EF/EF-S lenses on RF mounts. Bingo. To be clear, all I wanted from this adapter was functionality. No bells or whistles or anything fancy. Just something that allowed me to use my old EF lenses on my new RF mount camera. That’s it. So, in that context, I have to say that I have been more than happy with the results I’ve got with this new Commlite adapter, especially when it only costs in the vicinity of $60. You can see what the adapter looks like in the images below.

As soon as I got the adapter, I put it through its paces on a bunch of native Canon lenses as well as some third-party lenses from Sigma and Tamron. You can see some of the lenses I tested the adapter on in the image below.

The Commlite Adapter With the Canon EF 16-35mm f/4 L Series Lens

The Canon 16-35mm f/4 L Series lens and the Commlite adapter fit together seamlessly, and there was no struggle to attach the two whatsoever. The autofocus mechanism worked perfectly at different focal lengths using the AF touch feature on the back of the Canon EOS R5's LCD screen. I also took a variety of images outside at different focal lengths using manual focus and had no trouble at all. In summation, on the Canon 16-35mm f/4 L Series lens, the Commlite adapter worked perfectly in my tests.

The Commlite Adapter With the Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L-Series Lens

The next lens I tested was the Canon 24-105mm f/4 L Series lens. Like the native 16-35mm f/4 lens, it fits onto the adapter easily, and there was no kind of struggle of any kind that made me feel uncomfortable using the two together. I took a couple of shots in aperture priority on still subjects, and the autofocus function worked perfectly and quickly. I then put the camera into servo mode and shutter priority and took a few shots of leaves that were blowing vary wildly in the heavy winds that day. The AF worked perfectly in servo mode, and each shot came out clean and crisp. Again, a win for the Commlite and its combination with native Canon EF lenses.

The Commlite Adapter With the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM Lens

The next lens I tried was the Canon 100mm f/2.8 Macro Canon L Series lens. Like all of the other Canon lenses, it fit onto the adapter with ease and gave me no cause for concern at all. However, unlike other lenses that I tested, the macro lens did have a few issues with autofocus. That particular lens has three settings for autofocus, which you can see in the image below. Depending on which setting I chose and how I positioned the camera in relation to the subject, the autofocus was a little bit hit or miss. Eventually, it would work, and it worked for each setting, but it wasn’t instant every time.

Of course, I thought that may have been down to user error and where I was positioning the camera in relation to the subject for each of the autofocus settings on the lens, so in order to test that I took the adapter off and put the lens back onto my 5D Mark IV and shot from exactly the same position. As expected, it worked perfectly, without any hiccups. So, in this instance, I would have to say that there were a couple of AF issues with the adapter on the 100mm macro lens, but they weren’t permanent. I mean that with a few microscopic changes of position of either the camera or the subject, the autofocus eventually locked on and worked. But it is something to be aware of with that particular lens in conjunction with the Commlite adapter.

The Commlite Adapter With the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art Lens for Canon EF

The next lens I tested was the Sigma Art 50mm f/1.4. However, unlike the native Canon L Series lenses, the Sigma third-party lens wasn’t such a snug fit. Indeed, at first, I thought the two didn’t work together at all, and it must’ve been due to the fact that the Sigma was a third-party lens and not part of the native Canon lineup. When I initially tried to turn the lens into position on the adapter, there was absolutely no give at all. Then, I clenched my teeth, closed my eyes, scrunched up my face, and turned a little bit more forcefully, and it clicked into place quite easily. There was a little bit of a grind there, but to be perfectly honest, after I’d done it once, it was not particularly concerning to do it a second or third time. It simply wasn’t as smooth and simple as it was with the two Canon lenses. However, once it was in place on the camera, everything worked perfectly, including the autofocus in both one shot and servo modes and in aperture priority and shutter priority.

The Commlite Adapter With the Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 Di VC OSD Lens for Canon EF

The next lens I tested was the Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 lens. Before I got the Canon EOS R5, this was a favorite lens of mine to use on the 5D Mark IV. It’s such a versatile lens with fantastic image quality, and I really hoped that the adapter would work well with this lens. Fortunately, it had no issues like the Sigma Art 50mm did, which I thought it might have done considering it was also a third-party lens. It fits onto the adapter with ease, and the autofocus worked quickly, accurately, and smoothly throughout the zoom range. I also tested in both single shot and servo mode and in both aperture priority and shutter priority. In each of the tests that I did, the Commlite adapter and the Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 lens worked perfectly well together.

The Commlite Adapter With the Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD

The last lens I tested was the Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Di VC USD super-telephoto zoom lens. This has been an absolute workhorse for me over the years with the 5D Mark IV and the Canon 7D Mark II. Like the Tamron 35-150mm I tested earlier, it fit snuggly onto the adapter with no friction at all. As I use this super-telephoto zoom lens only when I’m out shooting the surf from a distance, I wanted to test it in conditions where I would use it. Therefore, I tested it using shutter priority at 600mm in servo and hi-continuous burst mode, and it worked perfectly. I then moved down to 500mm, 400mm, and 150mm and altered my shutter speed from 1/2,000th of a second, down to 1/1,000th of a second, and finally down to 1/500th of a second. Each time, the AF worked quickly and efficiently and had no trouble picking up my subjects in the distance.

Summing Up

The Canon EOS R5 is a brilliant camera, as are the RF mount lenses, and I have zero buyer regret whatsoever. That being said, I felt it was a waste to let so many great EF mount lenses sit idle collecting dust. I don't know what is holding Canon up in releasing its native adapters, but for whatever reason, they've been unavailable for almost a year now. I gave up hoping they'd become available anytime and took the plunge on a cheap alternative from Commlite. Reviews were mixed and my expectations weren't exactly sky-high, but for less than $60, I took a chance. To date, it's been everything I'd hoped for and all of my EF lenses work well. There are AF issues and some fitting discomfort on some lenses, but generally speaking, it's well worth the money.

What I Like

  • It's cheap at under $60
  • It works on both native lenses and third-party lenses
  • It's available on various sites

What I Don't Like

  • There are some AF issues depending on the lens
  • The mount it comes with is cumbersome, especially if you're using a tripod (I just removed it)
  • The fit on some lenses isn't perfect

Have you tried this adapter? If so, I'd love to hear about your experiences. Alternatively, if you can recommend another comparable adapter that facilitates the use of EF lenses on RF mount bodies, I'd love to hear from you in the comments below.

Iain Stanley's picture

Iain Stanley is an Associate Professor teaching photography and composition in Japan. Fstoppers is where he writes about photography, but he's also a 5x Top Writer on Medium, where he writes about his expat (mis)adventures in Japan and other things not related to photography. To view his writing, click the link above.

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It would be even more perfect if it would allow to be mounted over a TC.
TDP's Bryan did this hack https://www.the-digital-picture.com/News/News-Post.aspx?News=35054 "with a great success" :) I tried myself to hack the Commlite and screwed it up! I'm glad it was cheap.

Thanks for that info. As you said, it's currently listed at $58 so you can (perhaps) afford to mess around with it a bit, although I might be a bit weary of damaging the TC in the process.

It would be pretty much impossible to damage the TC. My problem that I removed way too much of the plastic cover and hit the ribbon of the tiny PCB inside. I had to remove the PCB entirely and ended up with a "dumb" adapter. It may still work for a regular lens, but not for anything "focusing-by-wire". I wanted to test the 600/4 III with the RF 1.4x and... you know the result already ;)

well.....probably worth a shot if you could get the 600 up towards 900....

Canon USA has them. I ordered one last Wednesday (5/5) paid twenty extra dollars for express shipping, and had it two days later

Great info. Thanks. I tried to get one and got a message saying Canon USA only takes payments from Paypal accounts registered in the US. Great if you're in the US, anyway.

That's odd! Unless there must be something with exchange rates.

yeah, or shipping...

Canon says they have them in stock, But they said the same last March when I was ordering my R5. I was lucky, I ordered my R5 at the very end of March from Amazon and they had the Canon EF to RF with control ring in stock and shipping from Amazon for $199. I was able to get it at the same time as my R5. I cancelled the Canon order after two weeks. Not the easiest process to Cancel from Canon. Only way I could find was to call to cancel.

I was in the same boat waiting for that pesky adapter to materialize. I lucked out and found one at a rental house: Lensrentals.com. They offer a "Keep-it" option where if you rent an item you can purchase it minus the rental fee. I've also learned to check with local shops. Oddly, they have stuff the big boys don't. I couldn't find an RF-15-35mm anywhere. But, this shop in Baltimore had several!

Nice pick up. I'm sure they're around here and there. I just checked Canon Japan and the $99 is still on the wait status. The $199 version is available

When i got my RP last June I got the adapter, too. I had to return them both due of focusing issues and I didn't know if the issue was the adapter or the camera. When they shipped the replacement camera they said the adapter was out of stock. I ordered the Vello adapter to tide me over until the Canon was shipped, which was more than a month later. I had no problems with the Vello which comes with a screw-in tripod mount while the Canon does not.

Yeah the Vello is another option I looked at but is about $30 more expensive than the Commlite. There’s a cheaper version available too but I didn’t see enough reviews to make an informed decision on that one

bought the EF-M version, it fried one of my lenses autofocus and OS motors, i would advice anyone to be careful with these. My experience with this adapter was a huge lesson to me about grey imports (lense) and third party accessories.

Wow, I had no idea there is a shortage of these. I think I’ve got at least 3 of the Canon basic adapter. They used to give them away with the R and RP at the beginning.

Sell 'em for three Bitcoin each!!

I have had an issue with the r-6 commlite and Tamron 150-600 g2 combo. Every now and again it will only hunt (loudly and kind of violent sounding) when trying to focus. I can’t definitively say weather it is the adapter or some other issue just yet. I need to pay attention to what mode the lens is in as far as stabilization is concerned, and what limit setting I’m in. The only way I can get it to stop is to turn the came off and on. I have missed some shots because of this.
I have not noticed this behavior with the sigma sport 70-200 2.8 or my Tamron 24-70 g2, but I also have not shot these too much since getting my r-6 a few weeks ago
I’m impatiently awaiting my canon control ring adapter which I really hope resolves the issue.

Yeah definitely a stopgap measure while you wait for the native adapter

Theres a site that has a list of all the 3rd party adapters. You can Google search "Complete 3rd Party Adapter List: Canon EF to EOS R (RF) Lens Mount Adapter Mirrorless Cameras"

I prefer MEIKE because it has a rubber gasket just like the Canon

Great info. Thanks!