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Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM

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62 193405 Jan 11, 2011
Recommended By Average Price
63% of reviewers $193.03
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
5.15
7.20
5.6
ef75_300usm_1_

Specifications:
Compact and lightweight 4x telephoto zoom lens ideal for shooting sports, portraits, and wildlife. The newly developed Micro USM makes autofocusing quicker and quieter. The improved zoom mechanism also makes zooming smoother. The front part of the zoom ring now sports a silver ring for a luxury touch.


 


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emandavi
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Registered: Feb 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 998
Review Date: Mar 21, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $150.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Price, price, price. when it's good, it's good.
Cons:
You have to shoot in high ISO, or be prepared for blurry images.

I have had this lens since 2003, purchased at the same time as the 10D. The lens is fine when you have plenty of light, or use flash (assuming there's plenty of light for you to focus this lens).
I've shot some really decent photos with it, after I realized its limitations, and worked within them.
This lens works much better with a ff sensor. It's a bit soft when used with a 10D or 1.6 factor.
It is my "walk around" lens, since I wouldn't have to file bankruptcy if it breaks.
I've had images blown up to 20x30 and they've come out really well. If you don't have a lens in this category, I think you should buy it before spending 10x the same amount for an L 70-200. You may find you don't need the 70-200, which is what's happened to me. I'm fine with this lens and a tripod.


Mar 21, 2007
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Marcel VanEerd
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Registered: Mar 2, 2007
Location: Canada
Posts: 1855
Review Date: Mar 2, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Low cost, light weight
Cons:
Honestly - none.

I've been reading every review I could find on the 70-200L f/4, basically to justify the expense of this pro-lens.

To finally prove my point, and of course convince my wife... I took my 20D to my pro-dealer, and tested the EF 75-300mm F4-5.6 USM against the 70-200L IS F4.

I performed a very quick and dirty test: both lenses at the widest zoom (75 vs 70mm), middle of the range (135mm) and finally at 200mm. (I did also try the 300mm to see how it compares to the 200mm setting).

As there was no quick solution to a tripod, I simply rested the camera on a display stand in the store, and shot towards the window. This would give me enough strong backlight, I hoped, to cause some serious CA. Camera on Av, highest JPG res. Like I said - quick 'n dirty.

Back at my desk, opened the images in PS CS2, and was admiring the quality of the "L" lens images. Or wait - that doesn't make sense... these are the EF results?!?!?! Check the exif data; darn. THESE are the "EF" and THOSE are the "L" results. Admittedly, one ONE shot I can see the lower right corner being superior from the L lens, but seriously folks - I can no longer justify the higher cost of the "L".

I'd be glad to post the six un-altered, original images somewhere if someone has the space - the images are about 2.5MB each.

See, and weep. (If you bought the "L", that is). Perhaps this was a fluke - a darn good EF copy. Perhaps not.


Mar 2, 2007
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Rafi Abramov
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Registered: Feb 25, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Feb 25, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $65.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Inexpensive, easy to find, good focal range, light, metal mount.
Cons:
Focus hunts, mediocre build quality, noticeable chromataic aberrations.

I bought this lens second-hand off craigslist for just $75.

I have the non-USM version, therefore the autofocus is noticeably slow and/or innaccurate at times, but you get what you pay for. This lens is great for a beginner like myself looking for a cheap, temporary telephoto addition to the kit lens.

I've managed to get a couple decent photos with this lens but the chromatic aberrations really are a pain. The cheap build quality isn't surprising for a low-level consumer telephoto lens like such, it seems like a toy. Zooming sometimes isn't very smooth but you can manage.

Also, lighting can be another problem. If you don't have enough light, the lens won't work well at all, but if you have too much light, you'll notice chromatic aberrations.

All in all, I'd recommend this lens to a beginner that's needing a lens of this range. It's easy to find nowadays, (craigslist, eBay, or dare I say, a retailer) and is easy to sell when it's time to upgrade.


Feb 25, 2007
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GraphyFotoz
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Registered: Oct 14, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 805
Review Date: Dec 29, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $100.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Cheap,Good 1st zoom when $$ are tight,Takes 58mm filters
Cons:
Soft pics no matter what,Build is plastic and toy like,Zoom barrel if it isn't loose...it will be very quickly!

I used one of these for a few months...all I could afford at the time. Soft pics even on a tripod. At first I thought it was a problem with my camera but with other glass it was fine.
Build of this lens is just short of a joke. Very loose and the USM is slow and noisy!

If your on a budget this is a good "tide me over" lens till you can save for a NICE lens.
If you have a few $$$ and want a nice lens...don't waste your time with this one!

I saved and traded up this for a Sigma EX DG APO OS f4.5-5.6 80-400mm. NICE LENS what a difference!!
Won't cost a wad like and "L" lens either!

Check the reviews on it!!


Dec 29, 2006
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Brikwall
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Registered: Jul 2, 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 3
Review Date: Dec 4, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $229.00 | Rating: 3 

 
Pros: Cheap, light, extended focal range, great for beginners.
Cons:
Soft with noticable vignetting (on full-frame cameras) over 200mm. Soft wide-open.

I bought this lens when money was tight and I was desperate for a replacement for my older 70-210 Magnicon.

I have the non-USM version, so I won't comment on AF or noise.

This lens has cheap build quality and fair to average optical quality. It is soft over 200mm, although the softness is much more noticable on digital than film. It also suffers from vignetting over 200mm but, fortunately, 1.6x FOVCF cameras like the Rebel XT/350D eliminate this problem with their smaller sensors. Images also tend to be softer wide open but, as anyone will tell you, this is a problem inherent to even the most expensive zoom lenses.

On the good side, this is a great lens for beginners, especially those who want to take a slow, measured approach to acquiring their photographic skills and equipment (ie: start at the bottom and work your way up gradually through better equipment as your skills improve). It is very light and lacks the bulk of L-series zooms, making it both inconspicuous and easy to carry around for extended periods. The large zoom factor and extended focal range also make it a good walkaround lens where portraits, sports, wildlife and similar styles are concerned. Obviously, its use for street photography and landscape work is limited. Likewise, it makes a good general-purpose telephoto zoom for the "weekend snapshot" type photographers who aren't as concerned about image quality, etc, but do want to capture shots of their kids' sports activities or take the odd bird/animal picture during Sunday hikes at the park.

Image quality is drastically improved by stopping down to f/8 or so. This, combined with the fact that it's already a "slow" lens, means it's best used outdoors in bright sunlight. Camera shake also becomes an issue in questionable light: it wouldn't hurt to have a tripod handy to help maximize sharpness. Be prepared to use high ISOs most of the time when hand-holding this lens.

If you take your photography a little more seriously you will either find this lens to be extremely limiting or will quickly outgrow it. In this case, I wouldn't recommend it: save your money for an L-series lens. Or, look at some of the third-party offerings instead (Sigma, Tamron, etc). Their higher-end glass is still cheaper than Canon's L-series lenses but offers improved build and optical quality over this and other Canon consumer-grade lenses.

To those people who complain specifically about cheap build-quality, slow AF, slow apertures, and poor image quality - you get what you pay for. Don't expect L-quality results from a bottom-of-the-line consumer lens (either quit your bitching and buy the best to begin with, or learn to work with what you have). But, don't dismiss this lens, either. As I noted above beginners, "snapshot" photographers or those looking for a cheap telephoto zoom to toss in their camera bag, will find this lens will do as good a job as any other consumer-grade 75-300mm lens. Even more serious photographers can still use it if they accept its limitations and work within them rather than against them. This lens can take some excellent shots when used properly.


Dec 4, 2006
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DLai
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Registered: Nov 28, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1130
Review Date: Oct 21, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $399.99 | Rating: 4 

 
Pros: Cheap in price, light weight, good for beginners.
Cons:
It's soft, cheap in build, slow AF...etc.

I bought this thing at the mall (which explains the high mall retail price I paid) back in the day when I bought my first film EOS Rebel. It was a great beginner lens but as mentioned earlier, if you've used anything that's half decent, this will feel like junk to you. It's slow and cheap in build. If you can find it for dirt cheap, it might be worth it to pick it up but if you have to pay retail, forget it...save a little more for a better lens.

Oct 21, 2006
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diesel88
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Registered: Jul 17, 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 7
Review Date: Aug 22, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: cheap, good range, light.
Cons:
aperture, feels like a toy

This thing feels like a toy, the lens is light.. maybe way too light, the zoom doesn't feel smooth, it's slow.

Unless you're shooting on a bright sunny day, then you might as well as forget it.

But for its price, you can't complain.

If you can get it used, it's not a bad lens for beginners and if you have never tried any other somewhat decent lens.


Aug 22, 2006
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zenzi
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Registered: Jul 6, 2006
Location: France
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jul 6, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Cheap, practical, fast AF
Cons:
Soft pictures

I don't know why the reviews are all so negative about this product.
For a cheap zoom, this lens can definitely do the trick. Light, practical, with a silent and fast AF, it's a very good zoom for beginners (like me...).
I never found it made soft pictures until I read those reviews here. I think I kinda like this soft effect and I think it still makes really nice picture and colors.
Of course, you really need to use it in sunlight on a bright day. Under 1/500, your pictures may be blury.

Just check the picture below for example of nice pictures I have taken with it:
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=416
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=501
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=484
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=741
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=450
http://www.zenzi.org/bigphoto.php?photo=409

So this makes me actually think it's a pretty good lens for the price you pay ! And I definitely recommand it !

Régis
My photobook: http://www.zenzi.org


Jul 6, 2006
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bollywood1970
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Registered: Jun 29, 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 29, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: It definately brings the action in closer! It like using binoculars. It is very inexpensive by Canon standards, good for any one on a low budget.
Cons:
This lens seems to blur alot of my shots especially fast action at a distance and lower light. Not great construction!Autofocusing in the night at a far distances is almost non existant.
Jun 29, 2006
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Ghost
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Registered: Feb 22, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 2042
Review Date: Jun 24, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Value priced, USM, long reach at low price, light-weight.
Cons:
Not impressed with the colours.

I got this out of necessity to cover a boat race event. I was hoping for a sunny day as this is a slow lens. And as usual things didn't go the way I wanted. It was cloudy overcast. However I was able to use it the best I can. The lens is light so carrying it around was fine.
Not very sharp as others have said. But it's not soft either. Some of my shots were acceptably sharp. Fast shutter speed and stopped to f8. 300mm shots required some creative sharpening in post processing. I will be returning this lens for a refund to get something else.
Overall, while I feel there are better budget lens out there like the Sigma APO DG with the same focal range, this lens is fine for beginners.


Jun 24, 2006
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mhughes
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Registered: Apr 22, 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 24, 2006 Recommend? no | Price paid: $220.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Cheap, lightweight
Cons:
you will need a monopod or tripod most of the time

I have had this lens for about 3 months now, and im about to sell it on ebay i took it out for testing in a national park, to see the effective lengths needed to photograph the animals, some shots came out good some came out blurry *these where all handheld* colour was ok , touchups in ps would fix this, however the contrast was not that great either, the lens was light so hiking and climbing was ok, but in the end i feel dissapointed by cannon, but you get what you pay for and the price for the lens shows this

I plan to get the CANON 70-200mm f/4L USM Lens plus 1.4x teleconverter to replace this lens


Apr 24, 2006
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photomind
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Registered: Mar 31, 2006
Location: N/A
Posts: 0
Review Date: Mar 31, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: inexepnsive, light weight, sharp at 75mm
Cons:
soft at 300mm, easy to get dusts inside the lens.

Since this is a consumer level lens I don't expect it carries the quality of the L's. It is much lighter and cheaper than the L's too. I often got good and sharp photos at the 75-150mm ranges with aperture step down a bit. It is however very soft at 300mm. Dusts will get inside the lens easily so I have to dust off the lens after every use. All in all, this is a good inexpensive lens for casual use or as a light weight walk around lens. You cannot beat the price especially if you can find a GOOD used one around $120-130 range. Sell it when you out grow it and get almost all your money back.

Mar 31, 2006
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EvilZardoz
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Registered: Mar 16, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 333
Review Date: Mar 29, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap, large focal length range, light, easily available secondhand
Cons:
Lacking of contrast, lots of CA even on a crop body, soft images.

So this is a consumer zoom for the average person who wants to zoom a bit. For that, it's fine - and compared to the quality of most point and shoot cameras, you get a lot more magnification and better quality. This lens is cheap, but unfortunately you get what you pay for. The build quality is poor. AF isn't fast (but no slouch), images are soft and exhibit lots of CA even when stopped down to F/8 or so on a crop body (20D) - I've tested this lens on a 1Ds Mark II and I was better off cropping from the less-than-stellar 28-135 IS. I have used several copies of this lens and none have impressed me.

If you don't pixel peep and want small prints or small photos and have the ability to zoom, then this is your lens. Also consider it if you are starting out and need a good lens to learn with - it is certainly good for that purpose. Also consider the 90-300 f/4.5-5.6 as a possible alternative which I found had slightly better sharpness and better controlled CA.

Buy secondhand - this lens doesn't hold much value on the secondhand market vs. its new price, plus plenty of people are selling them.


Mar 29, 2006
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hewcanon
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Registered: Feb 26, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Mar 3, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Good quality shots and cheap
Cons:
Build is below average for Canon

I am not a regular widelife or sports shooter, but I needed a tele-zoom to complement my lenses. I was a bit disappointed by the build quality which is below average for canon, and the occasional hunting for focus. But, that aside, it produced some excellent images for the price. The pictures are sharp and focused provided you use a high shutter speed or a tripod .. i.e. if you practice good photographic basic techniques.

I compared the images to those shot using a Sigma 28-300mm lens, and the difference in quality by far exceeds the difference in price .. The Canon lens shots ooze with Canon lens quality.

For anyone who wants a good lens for occasional tele-photo images at a good price I would recommend this lens.


Mar 3, 2006
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smdeep64
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Registered: Dec 14, 2005
Location: India
Posts: 2
Review Date: Feb 13, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap
Cons:
Mine seems to have a pink cast

I have just bought this lens a couple of months ago as I did not have the budget for a better lens. I would say I am mostly satisfied, although I do get a pronounced pink cast. I have not used a hood on the lens. maybe that could be the reason?

Sudeep


Feb 13, 2006
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marc1
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Registered: Jan 29, 2006
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Posts: 0
Review Date: Jan 29, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $160.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Cheap & Light Weight
Cons:
Slow Auto Focus & no image stabilization

Not a bad lens for the money. Its cheap and light weight with fair to good optics. No match for an L quality lens performance & sharpness.

Jan 29, 2006
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Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
62 193405 Jan 11, 2011
Recommended By Average Price
63% of reviewers $193.03
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
5.15
7.20
5.6
ef75_300usm_1_


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