Lens upgrade

mondmagu 9 75 Ireland
25 Feb 2013 3:01PM
Hi all!
I have an EOS 60D and three lens : ef-s 17-55 f2.8,50 f1.8 and the 55-250.I am now thinking of upgrading my 55-250 lens to something with a little more reach and preferably sticking with Canon lens.The lens that stick out are the EF 70-300 f4-5.6 L IS USM or the EF 100-400 F4.5-5.6 L IS USM.There is not much difference price wise and just in my price range.
Anybody got any thoughts on the best recommendation between these or if they feel there is a better option in other manufacturers lens?
I shoot mainly landscape,still life,macro,reportage and low light. But this year I have a number of sporting events to photograph and will have varying levels of access to behind the scenes and this is one of the reasons behind the upgrade.
Any thoughts,comments or recommendations are appreciated.


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mikehit 10 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
25 Feb 2013 3:22PM
I had the 100-400L and the 70-300L on hire for a while to compare them, both mounted on my (then) 30D and my wife's 600D, the latter having the same sensor as the 60D.

I would unequivocally go for the 70-300L. It is more compact than the 100-400 and has a superior IS (at least 2 stops better) which will be better for low light and the image at 300mm cropped is as good as the 100-400 at 400mm. Many reviews say the 70-300L is as good as the 70-200f4L IS which is praise indeed.
The only reason I bought the 100-400L instead of the 70-300L was that I already owned the 70-200f4L and it is such a beautiful lens I could not bring myself to sell it, and as it was destined to go on the 30D I reckoned that out and out reach was better than cropping the 70-300L. As it turns out I soon got the 7D anyway.... (Sod's Law).

lawbert 13 1.8k 15 England
25 Feb 2013 3:29PM
I was going to say the 400mm 5.6L as its the sharpest of the bunch in the same price range.

But it seems your after a zoom, 70-300 L gets my vote, My mate has it and its a blinder to be honest.
mondmagu 9 75 Ireland
25 Feb 2013 3:38PM
Thanks guys for the quick reply,the 70-300 is my first choice.
mondmagu 9 75 Ireland
25 Feb 2013 3:50PM
Very interesting review Mikehit.
paulbroad 12 131 1288 United Kingdom
25 Feb 2013 4:35PM
I would look at the Sigma Ex pro range. They might not look as pretty, but you will find it hard to see much quality difference and the prices are a lot less. I have several Sigma EX lenses and can recommend them.

You say you like macro, but you don't have a macro lens. With the money you save, buy the Sigma 105 macro. Many magazines use this as a test lens when testing camera bodies. Depends if you feel you must have Canon. In all my interest areas, I look for equipment that does what I need and am not bothered which name is on it.

Google the other manufacturers offering pro spec lenses in your range. Mainly, that will be Sigma.

lawbert 13 1.8k 15 England
25 Feb 2013 5:27PM

I have had a bag full of siggys all of which were EX range and they stopped me giving up the ciggies!!
They are'nt and never will be a match for an L series lens in so many areas with build quality and appearance being the least of their short fallings,
their optical quality is well short of the mark compared to an L series lens.

have you had much experience with L glass?
mikehit 10 8.0k 13 United Kingdom
25 Feb 2013 5:37PM
The two main critcisms of 3rd party lenses (compared to L lenses) is firstly their AF speed/accuracy in low light and some say they have a higher returns rate with product quality. I am a Canon lens groupie so maybe I am biased, but if I can afford L lens I will go for one.
GlennH 14 1.9k 1 France
25 Feb 2013 5:53PM
It's be folly to believe that 'L' series lenses are automatically better optically than third-party equivalents. In some comparisons the opposite is demonstrably true, especially at wider focal lengths.

Canon do reign supreme at making top quality telephotos, but that's not to render 3rd party equivalents useless. I used a couple of fast Sigma telephotos in the past and their image quality was very satisfactory - only discernibly inferior when pixel-peeping (or the results examined closely through a loupe - it was a long time ago).
Paintman Plus
13 1.3k 177 United Kingdom
25 Feb 2013 6:34PM
If you need a longish zoom then the Sigma 100-300 f4 has very good reviews and is very sharp by all accounts. I don't know if it's been discontinued so it may be difficult to find now.

Review page 1

Review page 2
mondmagu 9 75 Ireland
25 Feb 2013 11:47PM
Thanks guys, I'll look at the links and check them out.

capto Plus
7 6.0k 15 United Kingdom
27 Feb 2013 11:38PM
Canon cash back of 90 on the 70-300l at the moment.
brian1208 16 11.6k 12 United Kingdom
28 Feb 2013 6:42AM
The 70-300L was probably the best zoom lens I ever owned, using it on both the 60D and 5Dmk2.

Very fast & accurate focus, sharp wide open, excellent image quality and colour and eminently hand-holdable.

Although it "Trombones" to zoom the weather sealing was spot on, I've used it in a cloudburst without any problems (still not to be recommended though Wink )
mondmagu 9 75 Ireland
28 Feb 2013 10:24AM
Thanks guys.


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