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

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Reviews Views Date of last review
62 193372 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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bunnydustin
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Registered: Dec 21, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Jan 11, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $100.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: cheap, entry-level zoom, decent build
Cons:
slow, noisy, hunts in low light, blurry

I bought this lens from my friend for $100 when he got the 70-200 f/4L and that is really the only situation that I can recommend it. It's only a good entry level zoom if you can't afford ANYTHING else. This lens hunts worse than my kit lens, especially in low light. But if you're on a very small budget like me then it's livable.

Jan 11, 2006
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DaveEP
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Registered: Aug 14, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 3706
Review Date: Jan 6, 2006 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 4 

Pros: It's cheap
Cons:
It's soft

Hmmm..... I only used this lens for a few weeks (on 1.6 crop body) before I became so unhappy with it that I bought the 100-400L, which completely blows this one away.

This lens is on the soft side, especially when you are viewing at 100%, but in the right conditions 'can' produce some pleasing images.

For a beginner, just trying to figure out focal lenths etc, OR for some one who is not a pixel peeper, OR for some one who only prints 6x4s and 5x7s etc, this is an idea 'cheap' - 'get you started' lens. The guy I sold mine too seems to be 100% happy with it !!

I have some A3 prints from this lens that 'non critical photographers' find amazing. I guess I am just too picky now that I have better glass. However, I have also 'sold' shots taken with this lens, so it can't be all that bad.

On the final verdict though, if this is all you can afford, then it's a good start. If you can pay the extra - get the 70-300 f4-5.6 IS instead - it is far superior!


Jan 6, 2006
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jpfy
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Registered: Dec 11, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 31
Review Date: Dec 11, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 5 

Pros: Cheap, Ok for average snapshot
Cons:
Slow, Slow focusing, Tripod realistically required much of the time above 200mm

I have had this lens for several years and admit its my least used lens. However I have managed to get some decent shots although the CA, lack of contrast and slow AF have not been benficaial. If you are after a cheep second lens whist just starting consider this but also look at sigma and tamron.

Dec 11, 2005
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Oregon Rebel
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Registered: Aug 29, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 58
Review Date: Oct 5, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: Makes an excellent door stop. Would also be suitable for target practice. Pull!
Cons:
Soft; slow-focusing

The perfect lens if you want abyssmally soft photos. Save your money for something better. I think you'd get better results from cropping a picture taken with a good lens at 100 mm.

Oct 5, 2005
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shazz501
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Registered: Nov 15, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 53
Review Date: Oct 4, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 1 

Pros: none really
Cons:
everything

this was the first lens i purchased for my then 300d,i was glad to see the back of it when i sold it on e-bay,images were as soft as a babies bum,i rarely had an image i could be proud of from this lens

Oct 4, 2005
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elOsito
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Registered: Dec 29, 2004
Location: Germany
Posts: 3
Review Date: Sep 26, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros: cost, weight, ...
Cons:
see below

i just sold my Mark III of this lens on ebay for 50 less than i bought it a year and a half ago. when i bought it i wasn't really aware of sharpness, CA and so on - so i chose this one over the sigma 70-200 1:2,8, which cost more than 3 times as much as the canon 75-300.

well, what should i tell, it was fun using it on our school visit to rome. But when i started to compare the pictures from back then with the ones i now take with the 50mm prime i started to think about getting something better for the teleshots. The pictures were somewhat soft - wide open as stopped down - and the CA was horrible. Even with the "cropping" of the 300D the edges of the pictures were filled with green and violet colour - even at low contrast lines e.g. between a light-brown hand and the beach.

for the price i paid, the quality was ok - no arguing here, but i needed more than that, so i took the lens, bought a place for it in the bay and guess what - the guy who bought it is extremely happy with the lens Smile but he is shooting with an analog eos50, a camera the 75-300 was made for, i think.

ok - enough of the bad stuff because yes, there are some pro points i want to mention Smile

at the last day of the trip to rome, i put the lens on my knee while i was changing lenses. someone ran into me and the lens fell down - approx. 40cm on stone. nothing happend Smile it was as good as new. not even the slightest mark and the picture quality was the same as before (couldnt get much worse, though). You'd be happy to know that Smile

the second point is that the usm-autofocus-motor is doing its job very very fine. not too lout, not too slow - just right for everyday use.

so, if you dont need to take premium sharp and high quality pictures, you can safe the money between this one and the sigma/canon 2,8ers


Sep 26, 2005
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alfarmer
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Registered: Aug 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 2053
Review Date: Sep 12, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $199.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Price, weight, sharpness, metal lens mount, value.
Cons:
Focusing & zooming mechanisms, zoom ring size & position.

Wow! I just got this lens from a discount dealer on eBay, brand new for under $200. I wanted a light zoom lens for travel and started out with the 70-300mm DO IS, which is about $1000 more than I paid for this little gem -- and not as good at 300mm!

I realize this lens doesn't rate as high as many others, but on a 1.6x camera I think any edge problems will be mitigated. I can't speak for CA, as I never really run into it much -- with any of my lenses, but optics on this lens are GREAT for casual and vacation use. Very lightweight for carrying as well, and because of the price it won't ruin your week if it gets broken or stolen while you're away. :-)

One thing I dislike is the way they made the zoom ring/handle. It's nice that it's big, but the portion where you must hold the lens in order to twist it onto the camera is impossibly small. I'm always holding the zoom ring when I go to attach it, which results in zooming instead of attaching. Very frustrating, since fixing this problem wouldn't affect the price or anything else about the lens.

The other thing I don't like is the fact that the whole lens turns and moves when zooming and focusing. It makes filters problematic, but I knew what I was getting into at this price point and I'd just as soon have the good value.

But the other problem this causes, and it does so even with some of Canon's more-expensive lenses, is often the lens will be "extended" due to close focusing when shut off. You must remember to manually focus it back into position or focus on something far away before turning off your camera. Otherwise, the lens sticks out when you remove it, exposing the innards to dust, possible breakage, etc.

ALF


Sep 12, 2005
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menlokid2000
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Registered: Sep 4, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 7, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $175.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Price and size. It's a good consumer lens for the price. The USM AF is certainly much faster and quieter than the AF on similar lenses by Tarmon or Sigma. Pretty decent image between 75 - 150 mm range.
Cons:
At 200 - 300 mm range, you really need to stop down to f/8 or more to get sharp pics. You get noticeable CA when shooting high contrast subjects at f/5.6 at 300mm, but it goes away when you step down to f/16 or f/22.

I shot a silver Honda Accord's back from 40 yards at bright sunlight. at 300 mm and f/5.6, you could notice CA in the form of purple lines around the edges of the trunk and the license plate.

At f/22 the picture was crisp and no CA. For the price, this is a good lens. If you're picky, then spend $1200 for the L series.


Sep 7, 2005
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DynaSport
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Registered: Aug 11, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1660
Review Date: Aug 15, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $175.00 | Rating: 5 

Pros: Cheap, light, small for a tele zoom of this lenght, can produce decent photos
Cons:
Pretty slow, sometimes focus hunts, quality of shots not up to L standards

This is the first lens I purchased for my old film Rebel (my first SLR) and I still have it and it still works. Everyone complains about the build quality of this lens, but I hauled it all over Mexico for two weeks six years ago without any problems and it is still working.

I think you can be happy with this lens if you understand what you are buying. It is an inexpensive, light, slow telephoto zoom. It is for outside in good sun. If you have those conditions, the pictures can be very pleasing. I took the lens out today and took some very nice shots of butterflies in my flowers at 200mm. The bokeh was nice (in my opinion), the colors were bright, some of the shots were excellent. I also took this lens to my son's high school graduation where I was forced to sit in the rafters. At 300mm hand held, inside, I took some decent pictures of him on the floor of the auditorium. I am sure the pictures would have been better with a 300 L, but I can't afford a 300L and probably never will. I am purchasing the 200mm 2.8 L and am sure it will take better pictures than this lens also, but I have to say this has been a good lens to learn and grow with. I have learned about light, shutter speed, f-stop, and so on with this lens. It has been easy to carry, so I have taken it everywhere. It works on my Digital Rebel much better than it did on my film Rebel. It is longer and I can use high ISOs to get more light which this lens needs.

Anyway, if you can't afford an L but want a zoom and will have good light most of the time, go ahead and buy and enjoy.



Aug 15, 2005
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orgovsky
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Registered: Jul 1, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 378
Review Date: Jul 1, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros: Large zoom range
Cons:
Everything else...photo quality, saturation, brightness, must use at relatively high shutter speeds ESPECIALLY at upper zoome end...element extends due to excessive front-end weight

So if you REALLY want a zoom lens...this is not the lens to EVEN consider buying. If you're looking to spend very little money, look for this cheap some place. I sold it for about $100 cheaper than I bought it because I was desperate to get rid of it. I can't afford "L" lenses on my student budget, but I definately can't afford cheap, low-quality garbage. I don't care that it has a Canon logo on it. This lens is absolutely horrible, and to be honest with you, if you're considering buying it, my only advise is, make sure you have the sun as your light source, that you're using minimum ISO 800 film, and that you're taking photos of non-moving objects...

One word sums up my opinion on this lens: POOP.


Jul 1, 2005
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krieves
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Registered: Apr 27, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 968
Review Date: Jun 22, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $190.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Cheap, light, can produce some good pictures if stopped down.
Cons:
CA, inconsistantly soft images.

I bought this lens about a year and a half ago to go on a dRebel (now using it on a 20D). I quickly learned that you get what you pay for. The lens gets you a 75-300 zoom for less than $200 - a pretty amazing thing. However, it comes at a cost of CA in contrasty, brightly lit photos. It also produces some soft images at 300 using wide apertures.

All that said, under good conditions, you can get some great photos with the lens. It is not an "L" lens, but if you need some reach, are on a budget, and are willing to make some compromises, this is the lens for you.


Jun 22, 2005
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ardtullaich
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Registered: Mar 12, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 3
Review Date: Apr 16, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: light sharp
Cons:
F 5.6 crap

I bought this 5 years ago, then i bought a fuji 6900 so my slr was put in the shed for about 4 years, till this xmas when i got a 20 D so i had to go and dig out my eos stuff from the shed took bloody ages, big shed stuffed full.
stuck this lens on and i was shooting away at f5.6, crap, back in the shed, then this week we were getting the birds back in the garden and i couldn,t reach them with my sigma 28-70mm f2.8 so back in the shed for this lens.
tried differant f stops f8 upwards i was getting fantastic results all hand held. Just whack the iso up to get the shutter speed very little noise on the 20 D i just shoot away at iso 800 and 1600. I cant fault this lens now, if this is the result i get with this lens i gota get an L series lens. you want proof email me for photos , Dave


Apr 16, 2005
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sivrajbm
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Registered: Mar 15, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 3317
Review Date: Apr 9, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $265.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: Canon name, lightweight
Cons:
Micro USM not the good stuff, slow focusing hunts a bit, stiff gritty zoom and focus ring, plenty of CA, not the sharpest pencil in the box.

Bought this lense as a tester against the Tamron 75-300.
At 120.00 bucks less the Tamron beat this lense at everything from 75-F13 all the way to 300-f45. The Tamron has much better feel and is much smoother. CA on the Tamron is better controled. There is no speed difference between the two lenses, they both hunt some. Save your money on this one, either get the Tamron or save up for the Sigma 70-200 or the Canon L. This one is going back on Monday I'll keep the Tamron till I can get one of the other two. It'll probably be the Sigma for me.


Apr 9, 2005
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profotos
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Registered: Mar 15, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1
Review Date: Mar 10, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $110.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Price, size, weight. Images are not bad
Cons:
Some CA. Needs to be at F8 to get sharp results @300MM

I go t this at a bargain price with the 300D and can't complain.

I've achieved sharp handheld results @300MM and some lab tests I have for this show that it is as sharp as the 100-400 L throughout its focal length.

The problem with this lens is that, being so light, it's easy to forget that at 300MM it needs proper long lens technique to get decent results. 300MM at F8 is pretty good.


Mar 10, 2005
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cezars
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Registered: Mar 1, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 137
Review Date: Mar 1, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $175.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: very cheap; quality is ok (for non-professional use, this lens performs well)
Cons:
you've got to buy a big memory card because you'll need to take a lot of shots to have a few acceptable ones

Ok this is not the sharpest lens around. For under 200$ for such a focal range, I can understand that.

However, at 300mm I achieved what I consider as great results with great light conditions and a great subject. Here's an example: http://www.deviantart.com/view/9253922/

My biggest mistake on that shot is that I set ISO to 100. It should've been to 400 to make the photo a bit sharper. I was a beginner when I took that... Wink

Very great value if you need that focal range and can't afford a $1000+ lens. Don't forget however that you'll need perfect photo conditions to take nice shots with this zoom lens.


Mar 1, 2005
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Stratos
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Registered: Dec 25, 2004
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jan 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

Pros: Sharp, fast, light, really cheap, nice range - one of the most underestimated lenses in this board! you don't get more sharpness for the price!
Cons:
lots of CA's but only if you're not carefully, "nice-weather-lense"

i bought this lense instead of the 70-200 4L due to BF/FF problems with the L lense and the three times higher price.

what can i say? in my opinion this is one of the most underestimated lense on this review site. people compare it with the 4L but forget, that this lense cost 1/3 of the 4L. then they say, it's soft over 200, but they forget that the 4L only goes up to 200.

the sharpness is very good in my opinion, if you step down with apparture a little bit, the sharpness is comparable with the 4L!

CA's - well they can be a problem, but normally they will only appear very hard if you have overexposed images and such images are unusuable anyway in most cases.

the only thing i really miss is more luminosity...


people praise the L lenses to heaven and throw this lense in the garbage. but they forget the unbeatable price and the excellent range, as well as the good sharpness! even wide at 300mm the sharpness is acceptable, in my opinion!




Jan 20, 2005
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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 193372 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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