Canon EF 70-300 mm f/4-5.6 IS USM
- very good image resolution in the center of the frame
- good image quality on the edges of the frame (except for the area around the wide open aperture for 300 mm)
- well corrected chromatic aberration
- small distortion
- well corrected astigmatism
- vignetting almost completely absent
- efficient stabilization
- the image resolution for 300 mm could be better
- weak against bright light
- autofocus, which could be described with one word - disaster
In our summery it would be worth answering two questions. How does
the Canon look in comparison with a very popular Sigma 70-300 APO
because of the good relation between the quality and the price? Is it
worth paying extra for the Canona 70-200 f/4L?
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The answer to the first question is rather easy. Canon is better than Sigma, maybe not a whole lot but in almost every aspect. Even the unfortunate autofocus works better than Sigma's. The most convincing argument, however, should be picture stabilization which in such a light and focal length lens is obligatory. The question is whether it is worth paying an 350$ for the stabilization and slightly better optical values?
The answer to the second question is a bit more complicated. The price difference between the two Canons is 30$. The Canon 70-300 mm IS has a bigger focal length range and picture stabilization but on the other hand the L-grade lens has better sharpness with a wide open aperture, as well as having a sturdy body. Another point for the 70-300 IS is that with a body in the 20/30D class it is possible to carry this for a pretty long walk. It is much more difficult with the L-grade lens.
Truly saying I was faced with such a decision. I made my choice and so far so good. I don't want to suggest anything so I won't say which one I chose. I'm sure many people already know.