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

Review Date : Mon, 3 Sep 2007

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

The question is, does the 75-300mm lens make the grade on the APS sensor?......

Pros: USM, AF system-quick and quiet
Cons: Average results overall, nothing outstanding

Canon’s EF-S range is designed for the small APS-C sensor but all of the lenses in the EF range are suitable for APS and full-frame systems (either 35mm film or 35mm sized sensors). The question is, does the 75-300mm lens make the grade on the APS-C sensor?

At just £149, it’s an attractive proposition to the millions of 400D users, who are looking for a light telephoto zoom. As an added bonus it includes a USM (Ultrasonic Motor) driven AF, making the autofocus quick and quiet, though at f/4 it’s not the fastest light-gatherer in the world. The mainly plastic build quality is more than reasonable, and the inclusion of a metal lens mount is a positive. The grip around the main barrel is comfortable, though the zoom action is quite loose on the sample we tested. The focus ring can be used to focus manually even in AF mode – which is good for fine-tuning, but the action in AF mode is a little jerky, though smoother in manual mode.

The lens sharpness rarely rises above average for the group, with no outstanding performance spikes. This can be seen in the chart and also in the pictures themselves which have a softness, especially at the edges.

Chromatic aberration, however, ranges from fair to good at the 70mm end of the lens to pretty darn poor at the 300mm end, with a low of 2.8 pixels in the corner at f/8.

Verdict

An average performer with a general softness and high fringing


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Price as reviewed

£149.00

Scores

Scores
Features 16/20
Design 17/20
Image Quality 15/20
Performance 14/20
Value 16/20
Overall Score 78%