The Canon RF 100-300mm F/2.8L IS USM telephoto zoom ships May 31, 2023, but the review are already coming in. Here are some recent observations from a recent Fstoppers article. The Canon RF 100-300 F2.8L IS USM can be preordered from Adorama or B&H for $9,499. It starts shipping May 31, 2023.

    • The RF 100-300mm F/2.8 L IS USM weighs 2.65kg compared to 2.4kg for the RF300mm. While heavy, the lens is easy to handle.
    • The tripod mount cannot be removed, but there is a pad on the back of the foot, so you can use it as a handle when carrying it for a firm grip.
    • The control ring is in front of the lens and the focus lock button is farther away. When using the camera hand-held, these positions are quite confusing and it's almost impossible to operate the control ring and focus lock button (AF stop button) without losing your balance.
    • The zoom ring is wide and easy to grip. You can also operate the focus ring with your thumb while holding the zoom ring. 
    • Autofocus is surprisingly fast and I don't feel the need for a focus limiter. The operating noise is quiet.
    • Image quality is almost perfect with no noticeable chromatic aberration or vignetting. There is a slight amount of flare in strong backlight, but there is nothing to worry about.
    • The bokeh is beautiful wide open, and the ball bokeh is wonderful with no annual ring blur.
    • When using an extender, there is no noticeable deterioration in image quality at 1.4x. At 2x there is some impact on overall sharpness and a bit of chromatic aberration, but it's still a very good result.
    • This lens omits the built-in teleconverter and drop-in filter, which may be a drawback for some, but contributes to the compactness and weight of the lens, but Canon is expected to announce a zoom teleconverter later this year.
    • I was a little apprehensive about using this lens because it's big and heavy, but it's very handy in the hand and with the right strap it's easy to carry around. Combined with the 1.4x and 2x extenders, it's a perfect replacement for a few large super-telephoto lenses, and it's cheaper (than multiple primes). If there's a downside, it's that the focus lock button on the control ring isn't ideally positioned and you have to reach out to use it.
    • Likes: Zoom capability, f/2.8 across the range, acceptable weight, good image quality with the extender, perfectly handheld, AF speed.
    • Dislikes: Quite noisy when zooming, position of control ring and focus lock button, tripod socket not Arca-Swiss compatible, no drop-in filters available, high price.


    Derek is a writer, video and stills shooter who has been in the video graphics industry since the 1980s. Derek is a founding member of the Camera Insider.

    Leave A Reply