Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM Image Stabilizer AutoFocus Super Telephoto Lens with Case & Hood - USA

Canon

This item is no longer available.

Canon : Picture 1 regular

About Canon

Next-generation super telephoto L-series lens with an Image Stabilizer, it's one of the world's best lenses for wildlife and nature photography. The optical system is newly designed with a maximum aperture of f/4. One fluorite element and two UD-glass elements effectively correct aberrations resulting in sharp and excellent delineation.

Summary of Customer Reviews

Customers most agreed on the following attributes:
Pros:
Fast / accurate auto-focus (33),Strong construction (25),Consistent output (18),Durable (16),Rugged (14),Easily interchangeable (7),Fast auto-focus (7),Superior build quality (7),Super-sharp images (7),Lightweight (6)
Cons:
Heavy (11),Pricey / poor value (3)
Best Uses:
Wildlife (22),Sports/action (15),General purpose (6),Wildlife photos (4)
Reviewer Profile:
Enthusiast (12),Professional (8),Photo enthusiast (4),Semi-professional (4)

Canon Specifications

Construction
13 groups / 17 elements
Angle of view
F stop range
4-32
Closest Focusing Distance
4.5m / 14.8 ft
Maximum Magnification
1:8.3
Filter Size
52mm Drop-In
Dimensions (Length x Diameter)
15.2" x 5.8" / 387.0mm x 146.0
Weight
8.5 lbs. / 3,870g
Mfr #
2532A002
SKU
CA5004ISU

Reviews about this item

Review Snapshot®

 
4.8

(based on 40 reviews)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (33)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (7)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Blown away by the sharpness

I just came back from an 8 day safari in the Okavango Delta (Botswana), and was using this lens on an EOS 1Ds Mark III body, along with a 5D Mark II with the 70-200mm IS lens. I have 10 Canon lenses, mostly zooms, and used to think that they were sharp. However when I got back the images that I had taken with the 500mm, I was blown away by how sharp the images were. They were substantially better than anything that I had ever seen before, and truly used all of the 21 MegaPixel resolution. I a...

View full Review

I just came back from an 8 day safari in the Okavango Delta (Botswana), and was using this lens on an EOS 1Ds Mark III body, along with a 5D Mark II with the 70-200mm IS lens. I have 10 Canon lenses, mostly zooms, and used to think that they were sharp. However when I got back the images that I had taken with the 500mm, I was blown away by how sharp the images were. They were substantially better than anything that I had ever seen before, and truly used all of the 21 MegaPixel resolution. I am now thinking of buying more prime lenses to get more of that wonderful sharpness that I have become addicted to. The only downside to this lens is the size and weight. I can highly recommend it.

Reviewed by 40 customers

 
5.0

Second Super Tele Lens

By

from Maine

This is my second Super Tele, my first was a 300 2.8L and it has been rock solid. This one is just as nice but a bit heavier and took some getting used to. If not used to it,I would suggest a mono-pod to start out with and then graduate to hand hold if you wish. I have had this one for a couple years now and I highly recommend getting one! Great IQ and built to last and great for wildlife!

 
5.0

The perfect long len

By

from Oergon  -  Photo Enthusiast

This is my go to lens for birds and wildlife. Spectacular image with wonderful detail, saturation and contrast!

 
5.0

Very Sharp images

By

from Gainesville FL  -  Photo Enthusiast

I find getting fine detail on birds and wildlife important to my photos.

 
5.0

The ultimate lens for bird photogrpahers

By

from Campbellsville Ky.  -  Photo Enthusiast

I am an avid bird photographer and this lens is the perfect combination of focal length and weight so that it can be hand held. IQ is unbelievable, this was a used unit when I purchased it but it is pristine, no visible flaws and it functions perfectly.

 
4.0

Heavy, but worth it

By

from Newport Beach, CA  -  Photo Enthusiast

This lens does not get regular use, but is invaluable when I need it. I can get shots that others miss.

(14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Bird Lens Extraordinaire

By

from Seattle

I bought my 500mm 3 years ago and have taken over 10,000 photos normally with my 1.4x attached. I hand carry the lens attached to a 7D using a Black Rapid R strap because I prefer to walk & stalk birds as opposed to setting up. I find using a tripod too constrictive. I'm 64 and not nearly as strong nowadays but still manage to get wonderfully sharp images because of the speed of the camera/lens combination. People are always amazed at seeing me walking along with my 500 on one shoulder and a 2nd 7D with a 100-400 slung across the other. My only complaint about the 500 is the minimum focus distance which is the primary reason I also carry the 100-400. Before I started carrying both I had to give up numerous close-up shot opportunities. It would also be nice if a new 500 comes out with the 3rd stabilization mode option because you never know when a bird will take off or fly by and you need to from mode 1 to mode 2 and then back to mode 1.

(30 of 30 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Outstanding lens -- simply outstanding

By

from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

I purchased this lens about three months ago and used have used it extensively since then. I just returned from a trip to Yellowstone and came home with spectacular wildlife shots. This lens will give you extremely crystal clear shots under extreme conditions. While I normally have this lens on a tripod with a gimbal tripod head I had a couple of occasions to use it hand held. The IS is superb and even hand held yielded crystal clear shots of moving targets. Yes, this lens is heavy and it is expensive, but that is a very small price to pay for the quality shots you will get with this lens. Also, I almost exclusively use this lens with the 1.4 extender and it works perfectly coupled with my Canon 5D Mark II. My experience with this lens has been all positive. Honestly, I have found no flaws and no reason to not recommend this lens to any individual who loves to shoot wildlife.

(18 of 20 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

So good that I feel like I'm "cheating."

By

from United States

This is my 4th L-series lens and the contrast and sharpness are well beyond the others. I started out shooting birds and animals with an EF 1.4x teleconverter attached. I'm using this with a very sturdy tripod and a gimbal head with excellent results. My "keeper rate" has gone up substantially from my EF 400mm f/5.6L. I've taken several thousand shots with this lens and the only question is usually, do I want the 1.4x extender or not. Lately I've been adding my 25mm extension tube and taking some amazing macros. It's wonderful to have a bumble bee or dragonfly fill the viewfinder at 12-feet and see ever last detail in sharp relief when I view the image full size. The cost of entry is high and it's a bear to lug around, since it's both hulky and heavy, but that's the price that we pay for such a fine, fast lens.

 
5.0

Everything I always wanted

By

from Goldsboro, NC  -  Hobbyist/Enthusiast

I use the lens for wildlife, almost exclusively birds, and does it ever do the job. Focus is instantaneous and the results are super sharp. Thought long and hard about spending this much money, but am I glad I did. Yes it is heavy, but I knew that when I bought it and for my use that is not a significant issue. I get such good color I have difficulty improving on it. Also super when used with the 1.4 Teleconverter. Focus is still very quick and accurate.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Absolutely Great Buy!

By

from PA  -  Professional

I absolutely love this lens. I thought after I bought it I would kick myself in the butt for spending this much money, but after taking a picture of an eagle sitting in a tree looking dead at me, it was so worth it. You could even see the eagle's tongue sticking out. I've gotten pictures of pileated woodpeckers, bumble bees, eagles, ospreys, dragonflies, and so on... One can only get so close with a regular lens. I can't wait to get my football pictures!!! The opportunities are endless!

Q&A

Questions & Answers Powered by TurnTo®

Questions about this item:

Shopper  Why Did You Choose This?
JERRY W  I used my 300mm f/2.8 with extenders almost all the time, and still needed more reach; I finally screwed up my courage, sold my 300 and a macro flash unit, and bought this Holy Grail of wildlife lenses. No regrets whatsoever - this lens exceeds any hype you've ever heard...
Shopper  Why Did You Choose This?
JERRY W  I used my 300mm f/2.8 with extenders almost all the time, and still needed more reach; I finally screwed up my courage, sold my 300 and a macro flash unit, and bought this Holy Grail of wildlife lenses. No regrets whatsoever - this lens exceeds any hype you've ever heard...

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