Canon EF 300mm F2.8 L USM Review

General information

This is a prime lens manufactured by Canon and the lens was released 1987.
The lens belongs to the category telephoto prime lenses, a telephoto lens where you do not have the possibility to zoom in and out.

It's been a long time since the lens and this model first was launched. Before you buy an older (and perhaps used and pre owned) lens a recommendation is to check with the manufacturer and their service centers whether there still are spare parts available. Hopefully spare parts wont be an issue but imagine accidently damaging the lens and finding out afterwards that no spare parts exists. We therefore recommend that you, to be sure, check this prior to purchasing.

This lens can also be difficult to find in stores, as 'new'. If you are interested in buying a pre owned and used lens without warranty this may be even more important to look up because you might otherwise be left without both warranty and spare parts.

Product description from Canon

At launch 1987 Canon wrote this regarding Canon EF 300mm F2.8 L USM:

"An extremely high quality large aperture super telephoto lens used widely by professional photographers worldwide. The optical system utilizes artificial crystal fluorite and UD (Ultra-low Dispersion) glass lens elements (2nd & 3rd) to eliminate axial chromatic aberration, realizing extremely sharp, high-contrast imaging performance even at maximum aperture. Silent and super-fast AF is achieved by the inner focusing system (lens group between the front lens group and the diaphragm controls focusing) and USM (Ultrasonic Motor). The USM enables focus preset function, full-time manual focusing and electronic ring powered manual focusing, which allows the focusing speed adjustment in three steps. Those functions were applied to this lens for the first time and followed by other telephoto/super-telephoto lenses."

Compatibility, autofocus and focal length

This lens is constructed to fit all models of Canon cameras, regardless of camera model or type of sensor.

The ability to use autofocus is available for all cameras.

The lens has a focal length of 300 mm. Depending on which camera the lens is used, the experienced and perceived focal length will be different. Please visit the list of compatible cameras below, it will provide the equivalent focal length you get on each camera.

Lens brightness and image stabilizer

The lens brightness and aperture value is f/2,8.

This aperture value indicates that the lens is very bright.  This will make it so much easier shooting in darker environments where you do not want or can use flash lighting, for example in churches or at different sports venues. Lenses with good aperture values and longer focal lengths, such as this lens, tend to be popular amongs sports and nature photographers.

The lens lacks image stabilization, which otherwise os good for avoiding the blur that can occur when using slow shutter speeds. Since the lens is bright, with good aperture value, the lack of image stabilization might not be that big of a deal, although a image stabilizer is always an advantage to have.

Filter and Lens Hood

If you want to use filters on this lens the slot-in filters  (48 mm) would be the ones to use, which is very common at these larger telephoto lenses.

Together with the lens there is a lens hood included but we have unfortunately no further information on model etc so feel free to contact us if you know more.

Tripod Mount

This lens is equipped with a tripod mount, which makes use of a tripod easier and more stable.

Things to consider before buying

Below you will find some summarized points and facts that can be considered as the 'pros and cons' of this lens. These are based entirely on the facts and values that are accessible through the lens specification, so we highly recommend that you also read the reported reviews available (see tab 'Reviews'); this in order to get a more complete view of the lens and its capabilities. Reviewer opinions reflect the lens, its use and its optical performance in a more accurate way, but any way - here a few different points to consider before buying this lens.

  • The lens brightness, f/2,8
  • Works on all sensor types
  • A lens hood is included
  • A tripod mount is included
  • The lens model is more than 15 years old
  • The lens can be difficult to find in stores
  • The lens is not sealed against moisture and dust
  • Heavy (2855 gr)
  • The price (more info)

Our Review Ratings

Time to grade Canon EF 300mm F2.8 L USM.

Build Quality     
Image Quality     
Overall rating 3 of 5

Best deals on Canon EF 300mm F2.8 L USM

Make sure to check out our price information page for best offers on this lens.