Review Snapshot

The Canon 100 - 400 is tough and durable, with a 100mm - 400mm focal range it is very versatile, push/pull zoom is fast and efficient, it contains image stabilisation, it is an affordable tele zoom lens.


The Canon 100 - 400 is a large heavy lens (but then all long reach zoom lenses are), with a maximum aperture of f4.5 at the short end and f5.6 at the long end it is not a fast lens, you will lose auto focus if you attach an extender.


The Canon 100 - 400L IS USM lens is an affordable long reach zoom lens that is perfect for sports, motor sports and wildlife photography. This is one tough lens, making it excellent in the field, and has excellent image quality.

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Foto_reviewer : A 30 something year old with many interests including digital photography, fishi...Member Reputation 35 • 17 active Krits
Canon 100 - 400 L IS USM lens from Canon
Canon 100 400 Lens Review
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Canon 100 - 400L IS USM - The Most Affordable Canon Tele lens

The Canon 100 – 400 is long zoom lens that is, obviously, manufactured by Canon. The Canon 100 – 400 is a professional grade lens, which means it is tough, durable, weather proof and contains excellent optics. Like all canon L lenses the Canon 100 – 400 is a “look at me” white colour, which can sometimes cause unwanted attention, although you can buy a lens jacket to make the Canon 100 – 400 more discreet. The Canon 100 – 400 has a variable focal length of 100mm at the short end and 400mm at the long end, which obviously increases if you use a Canon dslr with an ASPC sized sensor.

The Canon 100 400mm is tough, durable and built to last. This is a bullet proof lens that you can use whenever, wherever and still capture awesome shots. I have used my Canon 100 400mm out at sea, at dusty race circuits, in damp woodlands and in the desert and have never had any problems. The Canon 100 400mm lens has a push pull focusing system, as opposed to the standard ring type, which is unusual in a Canon lens. The push pull system is easy to use and, in my opinion, far quicker than the conventional ring type system. With the push pull system I can change from 100mm to 400mm or 300mm to 100mm, very quickly. This makes it possible to quickly zoom in and out in a matter of seconds, which is essential when taking images of moving subjects. Some photographers have concerns the push pull zoom system will suck in dust however I have never experienced this and I have used my Canon 100 400mm lens in some very dusty environments.

With a variable maximum aperture of f4.5 at 100mm to f5.6 at 400mm the Canon 100 – 400 isn’t a particularly fast lens but this shouldn’t pose too many problems in good light. Besides, the Canon 100 – 400 has 4 stop image stabilisation technology which helps to keep camera shake at bay. The reasonably narrow maximum aperture is the Canon 100 – 400’s biggest disadvantage but when you consider fast 400mm lenses cost several thousand bucks, and the Canon 100 – 400 is a fraction of this, the maximum aperture is something you can easily live with. Besides, you can always use some kind of support like a monopod or beanbag if needed in low light conditions.
Wildlife and sports photography often requires a long lens to enable you to get close to the action in order to take frame filling shots, without having to be too close to the subject and the Canon 100 400 is a perfect lens for this. In fact, sports and wildlife photography are the primary reasons many photographers choose to buy the Canon 100 400 lens.

Many photographers argue the image quality of zoom lenses is less than that of prime lenses, therefore rather than using the Canon 100 400 lens just use the Canon 400mm prime. Whilst prime lenses may offer superior image quality over zoom lenses, the difference is so slight you are unlikely to notice it unless you go pixel peeping or blow up photographs to bill board size. The image quality of the Canon 100 400 is exceptionally good and on par with that of the Canon 400mm prime lens. The image quality of the Canon 100 400 is simply stunning. Colours are bright and vivid but still realistic, images are tack sharp and the contrast is great. With the Canon 100 400 you can capture some stunning images.

Why use a Canon 100 400mm lens instead of a Canon 400mm prime? The answer to this is easy, versatility. A zoom lens is far more versatile than a prime lens and allows you to take different shots with the same lens. For example, when I take images of birds I like to zoom right in and capture images of the bird’s head (to show the feather detail), I like zoom out a bit to take a frame filling photo of the whole bird and I like to zoom right out and take a photo of the bird in its natural environment. The Canon 100 400m lens allows me to capture all of these images and very quickly at that. Imagine doing this with prime lenses and how awkward this would be. You would need at least three different lenses and whilst swopping lenses the bird may fly off which means you will miss the shot.

If you want to buy the Canon 100 400mm lens I suggest going to your local camera shop and seeing one in the flesh. Hold the lens, feel the lens and make sure you are comfortable with it. The Canon 100 400mm lens is a big lens that is heavy, so you need to make sure you think you can lug it around and use it for hours in the field. When it comes to actually buying the Canon 100 400mm lens I would suggest buying it online, where there are plenty of bargains to be had. If you do buy online make sure you buy from a reputable site, such as Amazon, where there is good customer service, a sound returns policy and reasonable delivery prices.

If you need a zoom lens with a long reach and don’t have several thousand dollars to spend the Canon 100 – 400L IS USM lens is the lens for you. If you have a passion for motorsports and wildlife the Canon 100 – 400 lens is the lens for you. The Canon 100 – 400 is a great lens and well worth buying, especially if you want the biggest bang for your buck. The Canon 100 – 400 is bullet proof, the image stabilisation is great, the image quality is superb and it is affordable

Date Reviewed: July 23, 2012, 11:25 am
Reviewed by foto_reviewer
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