Canon said last night that two of its long-awaited super telephoto lenses — the Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM and the Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM — will finally start shipping in May 2012.
Though they were announced in February 2011 and were scheduled to start shipping in May 2011, in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the lens launches were first pushed back until December 2011. Those delays then extended into 2012 following the devastating flooding in Thailand, which swamped many camera gear manufacturing facilities, including a Canon inkjet printer factory.
Both super telephoto lenses have been highly anticipated by sports and wildlife photographers. We included the Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM in our recent story “7 Stunning Lenses” based around the strength of its predecessor and the expected specs of the new model.
The lenses will certainly not be cheap, however. The Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM will cost $10,499 and the Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II USM will sell for $11,999.