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Author Topic: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?  (Read 8981 times)

Act444

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28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« on: May 30, 2012, 09:52:23 PM »
Hey all,

Just wanted to ask what people's thoughts on this lens were. They don't have this lens at my local camera store (I think when I asked them why, they said something along the lines of "we don't like it" or "it doesn't sell"), and internet reviews seem to be rather sparse. I really want to try out this lens for size but can't really seem to do so.

I've heard mixed thoughts about the image quality- some say it can hold its own with the more specialized lenses, others complain about softness at various focal lengths, so I just wanted to see if there are any owners (or former owners) here and see what they think.

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28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« on: May 30, 2012, 09:52:23 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2012, 10:17:20 PM »
Have it, like it for the convenience - great for travel and outings where I only want to bring one lens and/or not have to swap them (hard to do when juggling two young daughters as well).

IQ is pretty much on par with the 24-105 L - quite good, very useable images.  Size, weight, and handling are pretty much the same as the 100-400mm.
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wickidwombat

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2012, 10:23:04 PM »
I had it, its an awesome lens. very heavy though
it's very expensive which is why alot of places dont carry it
its slow from an aperture perspective however there are no super zooms that even come close to the
image quality so if you need a super zoom then its the best
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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2012, 10:30:39 PM »
I own one and use it for travel photography some times.  There's always the issue of getting a good one versus an average one from Canon.  I've got a good one.  For the price, you expect pretty good image quality and it can deliver.  You do have to factor in that it is an 11x zoom a little.  I'd rate mine as good at 28mm and very good from 35mm through 300mm.  For me the positives are as follows:

  1  One zoom covers the entire 28-300mm range.
  2  It focuses down to 2.3 feet at all focal lengths making it a near macro lens at 300mm.
  3  Good image quality with easy to correct CA showing up mostly at the wider end of the range.
  4  Canon's IS is very good on this lens.

The negatives are:

  1  It is one of Canon's push/pull lens designs making it a "dust pump" on the front of your camera so you need to zoom it slowly if possible.
  2  It looks like a telephoto zoom even at 28mm making it hard to do any street photography with it when traveling without getting harrassed by people thinking you're zoomed in on them.
  3  Pretty heavy lens for all day use (not really a problem for me but some people would gripe about it...).

For me its's a good lens to have at times but not always.  The answer for number 2 above is to carry a second lens for street photography!

You do need to try it before you commit to purchasing one.  Renting a copy first would be best.  I wonder who rents lenses...

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2012, 11:54:02 PM »
I bought one locally on Craigslist for $1500.  It is a good lens, but with that long zoom range, there are compromises.
 
I sold it because it was too heavy, and I needed to fund my new 5D MK III.  Actually, I used it a bit on my MK III and then sold it before the credit card bill came due.  i'd recommend it with no qualms.
 
Here is a 100% cropped image taken with the 5DMK III at 300mm f/5.6.  Bokeh is not the greatest, but its ok.
 
 
 

Act444

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2012, 12:07:15 PM »
Thanks for your responses!

Quote
IQ is pretty much on par with the 24-105 L - quite good, very useable images.  Size, weight, and handling are pretty much the same as the 100-400mm.

Hmm...that's interesting to hear. I have the 24-105L myself, used it as a walkaround at a local event last year and I'm always pleased with the quality. It's not quite on the level of the 35L or 100 macro (both are simply amazing) but it is a big step up from a P&S or the junk 18-55 that came with my old Rebel. I looked at images from the (much cheaper & lighter) 18-200 and they just weren't good enough- too soft.

Quote
There's always the issue of getting a good one versus an average one from Canon.  I've got a good one.

Really? QC issues with this lens?  :o It's $2600 for goodness sake!! I know there's always a risk of getting a lemon with any electronic device no matter the price, but...among the working ones you'd think they'd tighten up with the premier lenses...right?

Quote
It focuses down to 2.3 feet at all focal lengths making it a near macro lens at 300mm.

wow...nice! I'm sure it's likely no substitute for a true macro lens, but still, for a lens that supposed to be able to "do it all", not bad...

Quote
1  It is one of Canon's push/pull lens designs making it a "dust pump" on the front of your camera so you need to zoom it slowly if possible.
  2  It looks like a telephoto zoom even at 28mm making it hard to do any street photography with it when traveling without getting harrassed by people thinking you're zoomed in on them.

Man...the first one might kill it for me right there...I'm always VERY careful with lens changes- try to do it quickly + always indoors to minimize dust collection. After a little over a year, haven't needed to clean it or remove any large spots, although I do see small ones beginning to accumulate.

As for the second one, yeah, I never really was comfortable walking around city streets with a big white lens  ;)...it's bad enough at events where I'm almost ALWAYS approached by someone curious or wanting pics or some other deal. To me, the 24-105L is a good middle ground- while it is bigger than the stock lenses on most DSLRs, it tends not to grab people's attention nearly as much as a white lens would, and it makes it easier to go about and do your thing.


As for the bird pic- nice shot! It does seem to be a bit soft for my personal taste though- is it straight out of camera or processed? Maybe with some DPP sharpening it would be fine. I know I have to do that to a few images taken with my other lenses too.

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2012, 12:21:12 PM »
Thanks for your responses!


As for the bird pic- nice shot! It does seem to be a bit soft for my personal taste though- is it straight out of camera or processed? Maybe with some DPP sharpening it would be fine. I know I have to do that to a few images taken with my other lenses too.

The bird image is a 100% crop, and is sharpened.  With a 11-1 zoom, I'd say this is typical of the best you can get at 300mm.
 
Here is the original before cropping:
 

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2012, 12:21:12 PM »

Act444

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2012, 01:01:44 PM »
Ah, I see. Thanks, I really appreciate it!

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2012, 01:04:14 AM »
I always wanted this lens. I went to look at it at B&H photo in NYC and without hesitation they let me put it on my rebel xti. That was 4 years ago and 4 cameras ago. They steered me away from it, however I was shooting basket ball for a friend and wish i had a little more on both ends of a 70-200. I kept the f stops around 5.6~7 for decent DOF. ISO wasn't a problem with the 5dIII. B&H said it sucks dust in while you zoom and most people rather spend the money on a 100-400 if you need the reach and a 24-105 for shorter distances. You can buy both for the same price as 28-300.

If you want to try it for $112 give these guys a call. Very nice company to deal with.

http://www.lensprotogo.com/product/canon-28-300l-is/

Good luck in whatever you choose. I personally would throw a 1.4 converter on my 70-200 2.8 IS and use my 24-70 on the short end .

expatinasia

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2012, 01:07:06 AM »

The bird image is a 100% crop, and is sharpened.  With a 11-1 zoom, I'd say this is typical of the best you can get at 300mm.

Forgive me for asking but what are the transparent lines just above the bird in the right corner?
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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2012, 03:06:14 AM »
Those lines in the top-right are an out of focus foreground twig which you can kinda see in the uncropped version.
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Act444

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2012, 11:21:56 AM »
Quote
I always wanted this lens. I went to look at it at B&H photo in NYC and without hesitation they let me put it on my rebel xti. That was 4 years ago and 4 cameras ago. They steered me away from it, however I was shooting basket ball for a friend and wish i had a little more on both ends of a 70-200. I kept the f stops around 5.6~7 for decent DOF. ISO wasn't a problem with the 5dIII. B&H said it sucks dust in while you zoom and most people rather spend the money on a 100-400 if you need the reach and a 24-105 for shorter distances. You can buy both for the same price as 28-300.

That is actually my current setup, which I'm fine with (except I have the 70-300L as the telephoto which I chose over the 100-400 due to higher IQ and better handling). Of course there are times that I have the 70-300 wishing I could go wider for that ONE shot (and the 24-105 wishing I had a tad more reach) but I don't want to be changing lenses out in the field. Minimizes accidents + dust collection. If the 28-300 is a better "dust-sucker" than the other lenses, probably negates the dust reduction purpose somewhat, I think? Disappointing...even for travel use where only one lens would be desirable.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2012, 11:29:08 AM by Act444 »

neuroanatomist

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2012, 07:21:15 PM »
If the 28-300 is a better "dust-sucker" than the other lenses, probably negates the dust reduction purpose somewhat, I think? Disappointing...even for travel use where only one lens would be desirable.

The 28-300L is a dust- and weather-sealed lens.  Even the 100-400L has a sealed zoom ring and sealed switches, and lacks only the mount gasket (which the 28-300mm has) to be a sealed lens. Neither of them is a 'dust pump' any more than any extending zoom (the 24-105, for example, produces enough eye-blow to trigger a reflexive blink).

I'm on a weekend family excursion right now, brought only the gripped 5DII and 28-300mm, in a Lowepro Toploader Pro 75 AW - and it's delivering the convenience and versatility I need and the IQ I want.
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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2012, 07:21:15 PM »

Act444

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2012, 12:01:57 AM »
If the 28-300 is a better "dust-sucker" than the other lenses, probably negates the dust reduction purpose somewhat, I think? Disappointing...even for travel use where only one lens would be desirable.

The 28-300L is a dust- and weather-sealed lens.  Even the 100-400L has a sealed zoom ring and sealed switches, and lacks only the mount gasket (which the 28-300mm has) to be a sealed lens. Neither of them is a 'dust pump' any more than any extending zoom (the 24-105, for example, produces enough eye-blow to trigger a reflexive blink).

I'm on a weekend family excursion right now, brought only the gripped 5DII and 28-300mm, in a Lowepro Toploader Pro 75 AW - and it's delivering the convenience and versatility I need and the IQ I want.

I did some more research on this issue. It seems that what happens when you put one of the "push-pull" design lenses (either the 100-400 or 28-300) on a NON-sealed body (a Rebel or perhaps an XXD model), it sucks in air through the cracks in the camera body- I've heard through the battery compartment, or the viewfinder, or other areas. So this might potentially stir more dust up than a regular zoom, particularly if you zoom in and out quickly...from what I understand, the 60D (the camera I have) is non-sealed.

Man, I'm still on the fence here. The lens seems a bit overpriced for what it does and the quality it delivers. 28 is not necessarily WIDE on crop, but it's still a great range. There have been times when I'm out shooting events with the 70-300, I'm asked to take someone's pic, then their whole group comes in and I can no longer get everyone in the shot, lol. Primarily, though, it would be a good lens to take on a trip. Just one lens, stick it on and forget it. I avoid changing lenses outside my home at all costs to minimize dust and risk of accidents. (and yet, that money might be useful for other things, too)

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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2012, 09:05:20 AM »
The 60d is more sealed up than a rebel, but its no 7d or mkIII
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Re: 28-300 L lens- thoughts?
« Reply #14 on: July 21, 2012, 09:05:20 AM »