When I bought my Canon DSLR, nearly a year ago now, I absolutely loved it (and still do!), but, after a week or so, I found myself a little frustrated at the lack of focal range with the supplied kit lens – the Canon EF-S 18-55mm lens f/3.5-5.6. That lens is all well and good, and can take some mighty fine photos, but I felt that I wanted to take some more ‘close up’ shots, to get nearer to my photographic subjects. So, I started to research into affordable telephoto zoom lenses, and went for the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6, which you can see a pic of below:
As my kit lens already went up to 55mm, the 55 – 250 seemed the perfect counterpart – meaning that with both lenses, I could cover a range of 18 – 250, which is a fantastic range! The Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 is also very good value for such a long telephoto zoom, at around $220 / £150 (you can buy it at Amazon US and UK).
There are lots of reviews of this lens on the ‘net, many going into extraordinarily specific and detailed technical analysis – my review will instead focus (pun intended!) on my ‘real world’ usage of the lens, and will show you some sample photos I’ve taken with the lens. So, without further ado, let’s start, shall we?
My First Day With The Lens
The photo of the robin, below, was taken on the first day I got my 55 – 250:
Needless to say, I was impressed with my new lens right away – see the detail of the bird’s feathers, the sharpness of its feet, and the lovely background blur too. Being able to get such a close-up, detailed shot of the robin, without having to be actually standing right next to it (I was a good few metres away when I took this), is fantastic – if I’d got physically nearer, then I would have frightened it away, so my 18 – 55 kit lens would not have been able to take this shot at all.
By shooting ‘racked out’ (which means using the lens at its longest zoom length – in this case 250mm), not only did I manage to capture a detailed close-up, but it also helped to produce that extensively blurred background that looks so good. Using longer focal lengths like this is one way of achieving such a background blur – if you’re interested, you can find out other ways of how to blur the background of your photos in the seperate tutorial I did.