November 20, 2012
Having gotten by with bird photgraphy with cheaper zoom lenses I bought this Prime Telephoto lens knowing I would be paying a lot for a minor gain by comparison. The cost/image quality curve makes each little improvement very expensive; but it is necessary if you want consistantly good results. The lens was on sale so I took the plunge.
After 2 days and a few hundred photgraphs I am indeed impressed. I previously used the basic EFS 55-250mm IS USM and it was damn good bang for the buck, and got fantastics pics as good as this one being reviewed, but these results were not consistant; only 1 in 10 were as good. The only "bad" lens I used was the 70-300 IS USM which was a disaster.
This Prime Canon EF 300mm F4.0L USM is pretty darn good. Bokeh was decent on pics taken on overcast days on small birds at 5 - 15 meters and could be cropped right down to the tiniest details on a birds eye. An overcast day at about 200 meters, a crow agaisnt a grey sky revealed clear details when cropped.
The only downfall is weight. As a "walk around" birding lense it is a heavy as I would ever like, it's quite a burden on your chest after a 4 hour hike.
At 77mm, filters could be expensive, but I avoid them anyways. The built in lens hood is more then adequate for all of my situations, so the only filter I would possibly use is a CPL, which woould work well on this lens because it doesn't rotate when focusing.
All in All, so far I absolutely LOVE IT!
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