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Archive 2013 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

Hey guys,

Had a question about a piece of long glass I'm not too familiar with. I shoot a fair amount of sports for most of my work.

Is the 300 2.8 Non-Is worth it?

I currently shoot with a 5d2/1d2, and on the glass department it's a 70-200 IS II, 24-105, 85 1.8, and for the next 5 months I have access to a 400 2.8 Non-IS. The reason I'm asking on the 300, is the fact that once i leave my current position the glass doesn't follow me, if i were to purchase the glass, it's insurance policy doesn't either. The f4 is/non-is is out of the option list, and 2.8 is a must. I'm dead set on the focal length, so my main question is the reliability of the lens. CPS won't service it, so where does that leave me if something were to go wrong? Any of you guys/gals have any experience with this lens failing you?

Of course I want it. But is the $2400 price worth it now if it needs 1k in servicing later?

Jan 22, 2013 at 03:02 AM
Fish On
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

The 300/2.8 non-IS is one of the best glass that Canon put out. I've got one that I've been using for 5 years now and have not had any problems with it(knock on wood). Before you buy it, find out the date code as to when it was manufactured. I think the asking price of $2400 is a little steep for a lens that is more than 20 years old. To determine the manufacture date, you can go to this site:


Go about halfway down the page and it will explain the code that is found on the 300 as it is not the 10 digit serial code found on the newer lenses. It should have a code like UAxxxx or greater that can be found on the rear lens element. Ask the seller what the code is and look at the chart.

Also, make sure that the glass elements are clean(no scratches, fungus, dust buildup...etc).

To get the lens repaired in the event that it might need to be fixed, check out these links. Give them a call and see if they will still repair the 300 non-IS.



T F Camera Repair
27 Brunswick Woods Drive
East Brunswick, NJ 08816-5601
Phone: (732) 238-8806

BTW, the code on my lens is UH0819, so it was manufactured in August 1993 and as far as I know, I am the third owner of this lens. I paid $2500 for it 5 years ago.

Enjoy the lens if you do get one.

Jan 22, 2013 at 05:08 AM
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

Like Fish On mine was purchased 5 years ago also for $2,500. The lens is my favorite piece of Canon glass and it never ceases to amaze me with its capabilities. The date code on mine indicates it was produced in 1999, so one of the last. Unless I strike it rich I don't plan to sell mine.

I have never had a problem or had mine serviced. I got a price for a maintenance overhaul (clean and adjust to factory specs) for $299. I guess I operate under the guise of if it ain't broke don' fix it.

Jan 22, 2013 at 05:38 AM

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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

Great glass, had one for a few years then moved up to the new mk2 version, To be honest cant tell the difference in the images shot new vs old. Mine was 22 year old.



Jan 22, 2013 at 08:59 AM
a cukic

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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

If I were you I would wait for an IS version or go with an alternative, because my non-IS died and I couldn't find a repair center to fix the lens... At least in europe...
So in my view thats an expensive gamble...

Jan 22, 2013 at 10:20 AM

Search in Used Dept. 


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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

I purchased mine a couple of years ago for $2500. It has a front focus issue and a trip to the repair shop did not completely cure it. I had to purchase a mk3 that has micro adjust in order to use f2.8. I use it all the time but am very gentle with it. I consider it like a light bulb, when it stops working it probably is gone for good.

I have seen them for sale, in good shape, for $2000. If you can, drive it or ship it to TF Camera Repair in East Brunswick, NJ and have them take a look at it before you buy it.

Jan 22, 2013 at 10:53 AM
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

Many big older glass people say this....

Toshio in East Brunswick, NJ a call... he's like the Mr. Miyagi of Canon cameras and lenses. (732) 238-8806

call and ask

Jan 22, 2013 at 03:02 PM
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

If you are maxed out at $2400 and need that focal length, then you have to decide if its worth the risk to buy one. If you can swing another $1500, you should be able to get into a Mark I IS, and they are still serviced as far as I know. I just bought one and love it. I had a 200 1.8, and had become nervous about tying up that much money in something that could become a doorstop if it failed. The only other real alternative is the different versions of the Sigma 120-300 2.8 which isn't a terrible lens.

Jan 22, 2013 at 07:26 PM
Zander Alberts
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

Image quality-wise I have been very pleased. If you don't need the IS it's a great way to get into a 300 2.8 in a (relatively) wallet-friendly way.

I've owned 2 copies, and one did need servicing. I sent mine to Mark over at Midstate Camera repair and had a great experience there. You could call them and ask, but I think the options for service are now largely dependent on parts being available. In my case, an element got loose and it was a simple matter of putting everything back together. Had it required some special part, I don't know if it would have been as easy or inexpensive.

If you know you will be able to afford an IS model later, or will have access to one down the road, it could be worth the gamble to buy it for a few months, treat it well, and then sell it again. Just have to weigh up the risk vs. the benefits.

Jan 22, 2013 at 08:38 PM
Bruce Sawle
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · 300 2.8 Non-IS

I had bought the Nikon 300 f2.8 Non IS and owned it for a few years it was a wonderful piece of glass yet it was still being serviced by Nikon. As you know it did eventually need to go in for a new lens mount and AF adjustments. Thankfully it was still being serviced. Fast forward to now i am looking to pick up a 300 F2.8 like yourself. I have looked at eh Non IS and honestly for the prices people are asking it is not worth the risk if it should break. I would rather fork out the extra 2 grand for the IS version than risk having a $2500.00 door stop should it breakdown.

Jan 22, 2013 at 11:21 PM

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