Canon EF 70–300mm lens
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Three Canon EF telephoto zoom lenses carry the 70–300mm designation. These are the EF 70–300mm f/4.5–5.6 DO IS USM, EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6L IS USM and the EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6 IS USM. All versions offer IS and USM and have nearly the same maximum aperture of 4/4.5 to 5.6 over their entire focal range. The optics of the Canon EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6 L USM lens include 19 elements in 14 groups, two of which are ultra-low dispersion (UD) glass.
EF 70–300mm f/4.5–5.6 DO IS USM
This lens makes use of Canon's Diffractive Optics rather than a traditional lens of wholly refractive design. This allows the lens to be more compact, albeit heavier and much more expensive than a lens of conventional design. The lens contains Image Stabilization and a ring USM, which allows full time manual focusing of the lens while using the camera in single shot mode. This lens offers good optical quality with the caveat that the diffractive element does not deal with strong incident light sources as well as conventional designs.
EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6 IS USM
This lens is of a conventional design and was introduced in 2005, to offer an increase in performance from the earlier 75-300mm lenses in the Canon EF lens lineup. Like the 70–300mm f/4.5–5.6 DO it contains an image stabilizer; however, for focusing it uses the lower quality micro-USM design, and therefore requires the focus motor to be disengaged before manual focusing. The optical performance of this lens is competitive to Canon's L series telephoto zoom lenses, such as the 70–200mm series of lenses. This is because it features an ultra-low dispersion glass element, something that is uncommon for a consumer grade lens, and is usually found only in Canon's L-series lenses. This lens is also notable for having only a slight decrease in performance as the focal length goes beyond 200 mm. That is an uncommon attribute of consumer grade zoom lenses and is not the case for the old 75–300mm lens.
EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6L IS USM
Introduced on 26 August 2010, this lens is designed to provide professional photographers the 70–300mm zoom range without sacrificing high image quality. The 70–300mm f/4–5.6L IS USM is the only L-series 70–300mm lens and is the only to feature weather sealing. The image stabilizer is rated for 4 stops and allows sharp pictures to be taken handheld at speeds as slow as 1/8 of a second. This lens has superb contrast that meets or exceeds other L-series telephoto zooms, but lacks in sharpness in the corners throughout most of its focal length range. The image quality at 300mm does not degrade, making it distinct from the other 70–300mm lenses. Barrel distortion is average for this class of lens, but vignetting is better than average. Because of its fast autofocus, useful range, excellent image stabilization, and high image quality, the 70–300mm f/4–5.6L has recently become popular among serious amateur and professional photographers. The 70–300mm f/4–5.6L includes a hood but not a tripod ring.
|Attribute||f/4.5–5.6 DO IS USM||f/4–5.6 IS USM||f/4–5.6L IS USM|
|Image stabilizer||Yes, 3rd generation||Yes, 3rd generation||Yes, 3rd generation|
|Ultra-low dispersion glass element||No||Yes||Yes|
f/32–40 (1/3-stop increments)
|Weight||720 g||630 g||1050 g|
|Max. Diameter x Length||82.4 x 99.9 mm||76.5 x 142.8 mm||89 x 143 mm|
|Filter diameter||58 mm||58 mm||67 mm|
|Horizontal viewing angle||29°–6°50'|
|Vertical viewing angle||19°30'–4°35'|
|Diagonal viewing angle;||34°–8°15'|
|# of diaphragm blades||6||8||8|
|Closest focusing distance||1.4 m||1.5 m||1.2 m|
|Release date||January 2004||August 2005||October 2010|
- "Canon EF 70–300mm f/4.5–5.6 USM DO IS — Full Format Review / Test Report" at photozone.de (accessed 5 October 2010)
- Canon website's lens compatibility list for the ET-65B lens hood
- "Canon EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6 USM IS — Review / Test Report" at .photozone.de (accessed 5 October 2010)
- Canon EF 70–300mm f/4–5.6 IS USM Lens Review at the-digital-picture.com (accessed 5 October 2010)
- * *Canon UK product information for EF 70–300mm f4-5.6 IS USM
- * *Canon UK product information for EF 70–300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM
- * *PhotoNotes.org detailed feature comparison between the two lens models