Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM

Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM was Canon’s first lens with IS (image stabilizer). It has already been discontinued and replaced by the EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM since October 2005.

The build quality of this lens is acceptable, in line with other consumer lenses made by Canon. It uses a micro-USM rather than ring USM focus motor, so it does not support full time manual focusing (FTM). The front of the lens rotates during focusing, so it isn’t really polarizer friendly. The first generation Canon IS is effective, but not as effective as the newer generations IS lenses. It can compensate for up to 2 stops rather than 3 stops in newer generations of IS. Focusing is slowish as well, accuracy is fine though. So combined with a smallish maximum aperture, this lens isn’t really suitable for fast action and sports.

The image quality is fine between 70-200m, but turns rather soft beyond 200mm. Although, depending on the subject you are shooting with with some sharpening during post-processing, it may be possible to get acceptable results. Your mileage may varies though.

The advantage of this lens now is that it has already been discontinued, so you can probably find it for quite cheap on the 2nd hand market. It maybe a fair choice if your budget is limited. The following are some sample shots I have made with this lens.


7 thoughts on “Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM

  1. Pingback: Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM « The World According to Roland

  2. hi there,

    based on your article on street prices
    there you said that sigma 28-300mm DG MACRO is $2100

    but i saw on sigma’s website and it’s said US$440

    and i saw tamron’s 28-300mm is also around US$400+

    and if that lens (simga) is without OS, if i zoom up on 300mm and capture on 1/125 will it be blur? bcs theres no OS on it

    is it correct that in hongkong only 2100?
    sorry to keep asking off topic of this thread, but im going to hongkong tomorrow to buy the lens

    thanks a lot Roland

    • Hi hansen,

      Official manufacturer recommended retail price in US is not representative of street prices in Hong Kong (actually, it’s not even representative of street prices in US). That’s all I can say. If they are the same, then there would be no need for me to publish a Hong Kong street price list.

      Depending what camera you are going to use the Sigma lens on, the general rule is that you need shutter speed 1/focal length(for 35mm full frame) to able to avoid blurring due to hand shaking. So on a full frame camera, you will need to use shutter speed of 1/300 seconds or faster for 300mm focal length. On a cropped frame APS-C sensor camera, then you will need shutter speed roughly 1/500 seconds or faster.

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