EF 300mm f/2.8L USM versus EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by peter_j|2, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. I would imagine both lenses are heavy on an EOS 5D with vertical grip. A used non-IS version is at least $500 less expensive than a used IS version (with both lenses being about equal in physical and optical condition).
    Is it better to use a BushHawk shoulder stock or monopod and just get the non-IS version and save some cash?
  2. stp


    IMO, it's best to use a tripod, IS or non-IS.
  3. zml


    AFAIK the non-IS version is no longer serviced by Canon, which may or may not matter to you.
  4. Get the IS if you can afford it. As pointed out above, the non-IS may not be fixable if it goes awol.
    The IS version makes the most of the advantage of having a wide-aperture tele lens, enable handholding in some situations, monopod use in others, and steades the whole plot when using 1.4 and 2x converters (which gives excellent results).
    If I was dropping that amount of cash I'd get the IS version. Look at it this way - you 'waste' $500 getting the IS version compared to the non-IS. But if the non-IS lens packs in you've wasted $2000 or more.
    (Disclaimer - I dont know for sure the non-IS lens is unfixable - they might be, but its dependent on which part goes wrong, etc. You might want to enquire of a Canon Service Centre what they can/cant repair before making a decision because our advice here is worth what you paid for it!)
  5. Thanks guys. Most advice on photo.net is priceless...
  6. Peter,
    As the others have said go for the IS version. I would go further and say do not buy the non IS, it is not supported by Canon anymore so repair is impossible (focus motors are not available for sure).
    However the main reason is IS is very well worth the extra $500. It is a very sharp lens that focuses faster than you can think, holds its value very well will be supported for the next 8 years at least (if Canon continue their current policy). I find one of the biggest benefits of IS is when it is tripod mounted on something a little too small, it really works well in those situations.
  7. Have you considered the 300 4.0 L IS USM? It is a terrific lens which cost much less than the 2.8. Is the 1 stop loss important?
  8. Michael: Yes. Autofocus speed, bokeh and better resolution are important.
  9. Thanks Scott. You've hit on great reasons to spend the extra money.
  10. YMMV, etc... But I think the lens is very hand-holdable (both on a 1D or xxD+grip body). I've only ever used the IS version. I've never used a Bush-hawk myself, but I know people who have and they really like it.
  11. I don't see the point of IS in a supertelephoto, but maybe that's just me. I use my 400/2.8 on a monopod for most sports and on a tripod for some where I don't need as much freedom of movement.
    I'd be more worried about the IS giving out on the newer lens! Just something else to go wrong.
  12. How about this circumstance John?
    300mm f2.8 IS, at 2.8 and 1/80 second handheld (no tripods or monopods allowed). Beanie Man is an A list artist in the Caribbean, this was from a three day/night festival.
  13. It's not that heavy. I am using it handheld most of the time (sometimes with monopod), the IS is extremely important to me.
  14. I would agree with the comments about the importance of IS. Scott's photo is undeniable proof.
    Yes, like anything, it is another part to go wrong for Canon to replace.
    So, I will look for an IS version on eBay.
  15. Really the non IS isn't serviced by Canon any more? Does someone have any info on this? Sorry I have one and love it, now I'm a bit concerned as its my bread winner for my business.
    On topic if it isn't servicable by Canon do not buy a NON-IS version. This is a significant investment and to not have the protection of at least getting it repaired is not worth the 500. That said I have never once wished I had IS on my lens but as I have seen on this forum IS is a hot button topic some will swear by it others will dismiss it.
  16. Doug, I have IS on my EF 70-200 which replaced the non-IS 70-200 version. My keeper rate increased dramatically with the IS lens. Of course, that was the 4-stop IS versus the older 2-stop IS on the EF 300mm.
  17. Like I said hot button topic. Depending on what you shoot and times of day Im sure it's critical for some or even just a nice bonus. For myself with that lens I haven't found the need for it. Though when I get home from Shanghai on Wednesday I will be calling Canon to find out about the repair issues on my non IS 300. If it does turn out to be true then that baby will be sold by the end of the week.
    That lens is my bread and butter with my business and I don't want to risk going down and not being able to get it repaired. Better to sell a gem now then be stuck with an expensive paper weight later. At that point the IS will just be a bonus for me:)
  18. Doug none of the first generation EF teles are supported now. All that first generation with the fly by wire focusing motor are an issue, if the focus motor goes on a modern IS tele then if you put it in MF you can focus it, similarly if the IS breaks, turn it off and the lens still works, BUT, with the first generation teles the focus motor needs to work even for manual focus. Canon do not service the first generation now, just phone any service center, even if you are CPS and you talk them into looking at it they don't carry the spares. The non IS teles, whilst being superb lenses, are not a good investment.
  19. Thanks for the info Scott. Yeah I'm in the CPS program but I have little doubt I will hear anything different from them in this case. Looks like I'm upgrading when I get home. So Peter take it from someone in the position of having a possible 4000.00 paper weight buy the IS version.
  20. You are welcome Doug, here is another with the 300 2.8, more along your line and obviously IS is not a huge benefit here. But when I have the 2X converter and it is getting late in the day with a strong onshore breeze and I am using my small tripod I do still use it.
  21. Doug, if you are contemplating on buying a used IS version, you will be competing with me on eBay. In this case, may the best bidder win. :)
  22. Nice shot Scott! I havent posted anything new on Photo.net in a while but have loads of new stuff over at my site.
    No Peter the bay is all yours. To cover myself at this point in my career I always buy new or from KEH and last I looked AKA ten minutes ago Keh doesn't have any IS versions used.
  23. I am shooting successfully with an Russian YASHMA Apo IF MC 2,8/300mm, with and without an Zeiss Mutar II extender, mostly with full open aperture, on my Contax RTS III, Contax AX, and with an adaptor on my Canon 5DMkII, without IS!
  24. I second the IS version; I have a 600f4 (non IS); the focus motor died and it is impossible to repair. The 300f2.8 is in the same situation, so spend the extra cash!
  25. Thanks for the information Herman and Wolf.
    It will literally be a final click of the mouse during the last 4 seconds on eBay to hopefully win any auction for a "mint" IS version!

Share This Page