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A long lens that's light and cheap. Unfortunately quality is only so-so and you'll get a lot more performance from the more modern IS option (IS makes a lot more difference when you get to 300mm if hand held). Although designed for full frame film use, a crop sensor will ameliorate some of this lens's more obvious distortions.

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Lens specifications

Focal Length & Maximum Aperture 75-300mm 1:4-5.6
Lens Construction 13 elements in 9 groups
Diagonal Angle of View 32° 11' - 8° 15'
Focus Adjustment Front group rotating extension system with USM
Closest Focusing Distance 1.5m / 4.9 ft.
Zoom System Rotating Type
Filter Size 58mm
Max. Diameter x Length, Weight 2.8" x 4.8", 16.8 oz. / 71mm x 122mm, 480g

Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM telephoto zoom lens 75mm mtf chart Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM telephoto zoom lens 300mm mtf chart

A quick guide to MTF charts (which only measure contrast and resolution. Canon's guide to their MTF charts)

Black lines reflect lens performance at widest aperture.
Blue lines show the performance at f/8

Thick lines indicate lens contrast
Thin lines indicate lens resolution

Dashed lines: Lens performance with meridional lines.
Solid lines: Lens performance with sagittal lines

Closer sagittal and meridional chart lines indicate more 'natural' out of focus areas.

Remember that MTF charts are good for comparing similar lenses, so comparing ones from the 14mm f2.8L and 300mm 2.8L won't tell you much at all, whilst comparing the EF14 2.8L with the EF14 2.8L II will show meaningful differences. Note that other manufacturers may have different ways of displaying such information that may or may not match up with the Canon figures.

Canon EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM telephoto zoom lens block diagram

Which 75-300? - a list of all versions

Canon EF 75–300mm f/4–5.6 lens
Attribute (original) USM IS USM II II USM III III USM
Key features
Image stabilizer No Yes No
Environmental Sealing No
USM No Yes No Yes No Yes
Technical data
Maximum aperture f/4–5.6
Minimum aperture f/45 f/32-45 f/45 f/32–45
Filter diameter 58 mm
Physical data
Weight 500 g 495 g 650 g 480 g
Max. Diameter 73.8mm 71.1mm 78.5mm 71mm
Max. Length 122mm 138.2mm 122mm
Groups/elements 9/12 9/13 10/15 9/13
Aperture blades 7 8 7
Closest focusing distance 1.5 m
Retail information
Release date March 1991 June 1991 September 1995 July 1995 March 1995 April 1999

EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM reviews and articles

Written a review? Contact us and we'll add it to the list.

Sample images

None available.

Product launch

No information available on the 1999 launch of this lens.

Used Canon Lenses
• UK: MPB | Park
• USA: B&H | Adorama
Every Canon EF Lens: Read the Reviews, See the Specification & Check the Price
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