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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars107
4.4 out of 5 stars
Price:£88.00+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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on 27 July 2013
Most amateurs think that pros always use pro quality lenses. This is far from the truth - especially for lenses we would not use everyday. This lens could earn you serious money. My review is based on just an afternoon's work at a gliding club shooting gliders and their tow planes- both static and flying, and the gliders being winched launched and of course landing. I particularly wanted to shoot at 300mm handheld and shot at 200 ASA at 400th second in shutter priority mode on a Canon 550D plus battery grip..
I should add that I got my lens second hand on ebay for £62 including postage and the lenshood. The lens is mint so I was not upset when a rear lens cap was not included as it should have been!
The autofocus is not loud and screechy; in fact I did not notice it whilst working. Yes the lens will sometimes hunt a little with a moving object but the amount of keepers I got meant that usually the lens could focus a heck of a lot more rapidly and surely than I could. For a non sports lens this was terrifically good. Some reviewers say the lens is soft at 300mm. Well of course it will not compete with a good quality prime normal lens but I can assure all the doubters that it is more than good enough for photolibraries like alamy which (usually) asks for critically sharp material at least in one plane if you will pardon the pun.
If I could have shot a 500th of a second if the weather had been brighter then I would have got more keepers still. As a pro I can shoot at a 400th and get a good batting average but a 500th shutter speed would have been better if I could have managed it without going up to 400 ASA.
I haven't tried macro and I wish the lens mount was all metal but the lens does mount easily and does not seem to put much strain on whatever plastic is used. The gold contacts are of course metal.
Despite the slow apertures, this is a fine press lens at least in reasonable light. Yes, a Canon 300mm f2.8 is better; even the 300mm f4 would be better but this lens is light enough to live in a camera bag or car boot at all times. You try and carry around a 300mm f2.8 all day long!
Put the camera on a monopod or a tripod if you can and you have a good lens that can reach out to over 400mm (film equivalent) and is more than good enough for newspaper, magazine, or web use.It could earn you a small fortune with one shot...and as for my session with the gliders I got two images good enough for my own web site and I am picky. All in all it is very good value for money, and oh yes, my sample does not rattle. Always a good sign.
0Comment54 of 56 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Please don't take the Amazon star rating too serious - every lens has its pros and cons that I wouldn't want to squeeze into a single one-dimensional figure...
A quick note about me: I have been into SLR cameras and lenses for more than 20 years - as a hobby in the beginning and professionally later. Maybe because of my technical background I started testing my own lenses quite a while ago. I have a (no longer so) little test lab of my own where I do 6 different image quality tests (after taking a lens out for a while).

The AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD MACRO 1:2 is one of the lowest cost lenses available. It's made of plastics but looks nice and feels pretty solid. It has a very popular focal range but no image stabilizer which is problematic if you'd like to use the long end of the focal range without a tripod. The lens is compatible with both APS-C and full frame type cameras (the effective focal length with APS-C is 112 mm to 480 mm) and has a macro mode that allows close-ups at a magnification of up to 0.50 x. When considering image quality the AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD MACRO 1:2 has its ups and downs. The focal plane is straight as it should be (no "curvature") and corner shadows ("vignetting") are minor. Distortion is well under control but only if the lens is set to 70 mm and that's also where the lens is most capable of producing sharp images. At other focal lengthes it requires high f-stops to gain sharpness. Another obvious weakness of this lens are the color fringes ("chromatic aberrations") that occur both in sharp parts of the image ("transverse CA") and in out-of-focus parts of the image ("axial CA").

Though the AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD MACRO 1:2 certainly doesn't excel at image quality it's not totally bad or unuseable and I've seen lenses that are a lot worse and cost much more. So you'd definitely not buy this lens for its image quality but to extend your focal range at an acceptable image quality, a compact size and a very affordable price.

A much more detailed review of this lens together with all test shots, sample images and technical data is available on my website LensTests_com.
66 comments88 of 92 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 29 December 2009
This is a great lens for the money. The build quality is very good and does have quite a sturdy feel. Like other reviewers have said it does get a bit soft after 200mm but if you go down to f/8 or so the quality and detail is still there, as you can hopefully see in the pics I uploaded. The AF does sometimes hunt for something to focus on but that is only in darker conditions. As long as there is sufficient light the AF should work perfectly.
Overall this is a very good lens for the money and I am very pleased with it and would definitely recommend it to any starting out or anyone who can't afford the canon alternatives.
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11 comment86 of 90 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 3 January 2013
Bought for my teenage daughter who wanted a telephoto and a macro lens. This does both. Quite a big lens and max aperture on the high side. That said it takes perfectly acceptable photos. A competent entry level lens
0Comment11 of 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 4 December 2010
If you do research this lens has been around for quite some time. A prestige brand used this lens design, before introducing their own. Very usable lens that does not break the bank, don't be put off by the bargain price. (Very slightly soft at 300mm).
0Comment22 of 24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 22 July 2013
A good quality lens, at a very reasonable price. It covers a useful range, and in macro mode, with carefully chosen focal-length and aperture settings, image quality is nearly on a par with medium cost specialist macro lenses at several times the price - albeit at a magnification ratio of 1:2, as opposed to the specialist lenses at 1:1.

An impressive lens up to 220mm or so (goes a little bit soft after that, although still quite acceptable), and around the middle of the aperture range (say f8-11). If generally working within these parameters, then this lens will provide you with sharp images at a very reasonable cost.
0Comment3 of 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 24 November 2009
I have been pleasantly surprised by this lens. It takes great photos - for example it captures amazing detail on wildlife shots, as well as macro. But it is not the fastest lens, so make sure there is plenty of light around.
0Comment12 of 13 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 1 October 2011
Excellent lens, ideal for a casual user, does all I want from a zoom lens at the moment. excellent value for money
0Comment13 of 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 8 July 2015
Absolutely fantastic lens for the price, took a little while to get used to, but great for shooting wildlife, flowers and other such things. A very powerful lens too, I was interested to see how powerful, so, seeing as I live 40 or so miles from Heathrow, I decided to take a photo of a plane at around 4-5 thousand feet, fully zoomed in, and zooming in post photo, and despite it being pixelated, I could read easyjet on the side.

I've included a photo of a cat that I took with this lens a couple of weeks ago.
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0Comment3 of 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 28 September 2009
This is great, I wouldn't be without it when using my Canon EOS 450D. I've compared this lens with a higher spec yet similar lens. Although there were subtle differences in the results (slightly more natural colours with the other), mostly the pictures were barely noticably from different lenses. So, if like me you love photography, and want a macro/zoom lenz to augment the standard 450D lens, this would be a good choice.
0Comment37 of 42 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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