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EF Lenses 101 :: Applications :: Sports



Canon offers more options than any other SLR manufacturer for the photographer who wants to tackle this challenging subject, with choices at a wide variety of price points. The goal in sports photography is usually to get as close as possible to a subject you can't physically approach and produce dramatic, frame-filling images. Telephoto lenses, of course, are the answer here. And no one makes more telephoto lenses than Canon.

In outdoor situations where you have good light, an affordable zoom lens like one of the popular 75-300s may be all that's needed. At 300mm, you'll pull in distant detail effectively and these lenses are light and easy to hand-hold. The f/5.6 maximum aperture is usually sufficient in daylight, especially if you're shooting at ISO 400 or higher, to permit the fast shutter speeds needed to freeze moving subjects. Two outstanding professional zoom lenses in Canon's L-series are the EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM, and the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM lens these combine the flexibility of a zoom with superior optical quality, Canon's exclusive Image Stabilization, excellent AF speed with their Ultrasonic Motors, and (with the 70-200mm), sufficient lens "speed" for low-light photography, even indoors.

From boxing to gymnastics, indoor sports provide unlimited opportunity for great images and perhaps the greatest challenges. The biggest problem here is getting enough light in situations where you can't use flash. Here again, Canon has the answers. If you can get close to the action, a short telephoto lens like the 85mm f/1.8 USM or the 135mm f/2L USM combines great image quality and light-gathering capability. And when they can't get close, pros have relied on Canon's long fast telephotos like the 300mm f/2.8L IS, and the 400mm f/2.8L IS USM the "big white lenses" for years. Their extremely fast apertures not only allow shooting at low light levels such as those at night games, but give their signature "look" tack-sharp subjects with totally out-of-focus backgrounds that you see in professional sports images in newspapers and magazines.

You don't have to spend thousands to get great sports images, though. Using a superb Canon telephoto lens like the 200mm f/2.8L II, and combining it with the power of the Canon EF 1.4x II or EF 2x II Tele Extender gives you a practical combination that provides lens speed when you need it, the reach of long focal length when you need it, and excellent quality every time.

EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6L IS USM

EF 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 DO IS USM

EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM

EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III USM

EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III

EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM

EF 85mm f/1.8 USM

EF 135mm f/2L USM

EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM

EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM

EF 400mm f/2.8L IS USM

Extender EF 1.4x II

Extender EF 2x II

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