Every Canon EF Lens: Read the Reviews, See the Specification & Check the Price
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Canon's newest 55-250 zoom lens for EF-S mount cameras now includes the STM focus drive, as opposed to the previous USM drive (in the two previous EF-S 55-250 lenses - from 2009 and 2011).

STM is optimised for smooth focus shifts, for video use.

There has been a wholesale redesign of the optical formula, which shows in radically improved MTF charts, although proof will need some detailed evaluation.

The mount is plastic, so still very much a 'kit lens' option.

Available from: Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk | B&H | Adorama

Lens specifications

Principal specifications
Lens type Zoom lens
Max Format size APS-C
Focal length 55–250 mm
Image stabilisation Yes (4 stops)
Lens mount Canon EF-S
Maximum aperture F4.0 - F5.6
Minimum aperture F22.0 - F32.0
Aperture ring No
Number of diaphragm blades 7
Aperture notes Circular diaphragm
Elements 15
Groups 12
Special elements / coatings UD element
Minimum focus 0.85 m (33.46″)
Autofocus Yes
Motor type Stepper motor
Full time manual Yes
Focus method Internal
Distance scale No
DoF scale No
Weight 375 g (0.83 lb)
Diameter 70 mm (2.76″)
Length 111 mm (4.37″)
Materials Plastic barrel, plastic mount
Sealing No
Colour Black
Zoom method Rotary (extending)
Power zoom No
Zoom lock No
Filter thread 58 mm
Hood supplied No
Tripod collar No
Notes With automatic panning detection

EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM mtf charts

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.

EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens hood

Which 55-250? - a list of all versions

Canon EF-S 55-250
Attribute f/4–5.6 IS f/4–5.6 IS II f/4–5.6 IS STM
Key features
Full-frame compatible  No
Image stabilizer  Yes
Environmental sealing  No
Ultrasonic Motor  No
Stepping Motor  No  Yes
Technical data
Focal length (max/min) 55–250mm (35 mm equivalent of 88–400mm)
Aperture (max/min) f/4–5.6 / f/22–32
Construction 12 elements / 10 groups 15 elements / 12 groups
Aperture blades 7 (circular aperture)
Closest focusing distance 1.1 m (3.61 ft) 0.81 m (2.79 ft)
Max. magnification 0.31x 0.29x
Horizontal viewing angle 23°20'–5°20'
Vertical viewing angle 15°40'–3°30'
Diagonal viewing angle 27°50'–6°15'
Physical data
Weight 390 g (13.75 oz) 375 g (13.2 oz)
Maximum diameter 70 mm (2.76")
Length 108 mm (4.25") 111.2 mm (4.7")
Filter diameter 58mm
Lens case LP1019
Lens hood ET-60 ET-63
Retail information
Release date November 2007 July 2011 August 2013

EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM reviews and articles

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Sample images

No images available at present

Product launch

MELVILLE, N.Y., August 22, 2013 – Canon U.S.A. announces the new EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens.

Created to be the perfect companion lens for the EOS 70D, EOS Rebel SL1 and EOS Rebel T5i Digital SLR cameras, the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens expands Canon’s line of Stepping Motor (STM) lenses to six models – the EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, the EF 40mm f/2.8 STM, EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, EF-M 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, EF-M 22mm f/2.0 and the new EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens. Canon’s Stepping Motor lenses allow for the capture of high-quality still and video images and reduce motor noise from the lens so cameras, such as the new EOS 70D, will capture the sound of the video scene being recorded without the interruption of noise by the focusing motors.

The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens offers high magnification in a compact and lightweight EF-S telephoto zoom lens with an Optical Image Stabilizer for up to 3.5* equivalent stops for shake correction. The lens’ stepping motor and newly-designed focus mechanism support Canon EOS Movie Servo AF (available on select EOS cameras) to provide smooth and quiet continuous autofocusing during video shooting, as well as when shooting photos.

“The addition of the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM lens to the STM family of lenses strengthens Canon’s support for the growing number of photographers and video enthusiasts utilizing DSLRs to not only shoot high-quality still images but video too,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, executive vice president and general manager, Imaging Technologies & Communications Group, Canon U.S.A. “Noise reduction in movie mode is essential and video aficionados will particularly find the silent and smooth auto-focus capabilities of this new lens outstanding.”

The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens features one UD lens element, reducing chromatic aberration throughout the zoom range for excellent image quality with high resolution and contrast. It features enhanced lens coatings to help ensure superb color balance while minimizing ghosting and flare and a 7-blade circular aperture creates beautiful, soft backgrounds. For outstanding performance, a new compact six-group zoom system provides a maximum magnification of 0.29x at the telephoto end. Full-time manual focus is available in AF mode. The front element does not rotate during focus, which is beneficial when using polarizing filters. Minimum focusing distance is 2.79 ft./0.85m. The lens’ rear focusing system, high-speed CPU and improved AF algorithm allow for high-speed autofocusing.

The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens is scheduled to be available in late September for an estimated retail price of $349.99. For more information about the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM telephoto zoom lens.

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