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Old Oct 5, 2004, 12:31 AM   #1
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I was interested in getting the EF-S 17-85 F/4-5.6 IS USM and 75-300 F/4-5.6 IS USM lenses for my 20D. However, I am concerned about the speed in low light situations (i.e.; churches, etc.). Should I be? Canon claims that the IS will allow for "speeds up to three stops slower than otherwise possible". Anyone used these lenses or have any feedback?

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Drew
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Old Oct 5, 2004, 3:16 PM   #2
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This question has many elements.

First, how picky are you about picture quality? For some people, even IS isn't good enough and you really need a tripod. For others, even without IS, it's good enough.

Another thing to consider is that IS doesn't stop subject motion. It sounds like that is not an issue, but if you wanted to get a picture of the service in the church, you might have subject motion blur.

What will you do with the picture? Print it? Put it on the internet? If you reduce the size of the picture (for good web posting) then you can tolerate it being "less in focus" because reducing it will mask that. If you want to print it 13x19, that will require a sharper picture which usually means a faster shutter speed.

F4 isn't too bad, but f5.6 is 1/2 the light again... and that can be harsh. If you can steady yourself on something (wall, bench, pillar, whatever) and use IS, that you might be ok. Don't forget the rule of thumb is 1/(focal length). so 1/40 doesn't need lots of shutter speed. But don't forget the comment from above about how you'll use the picture.

Does that help? My general statement is that they might work if you have time to take multiple shots and you aren't going for any action shots... just the building. But at 300mm, you probably won't be able to get a good picture without IS, good technique and something to rest on.

Eric
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Old Oct 5, 2004, 4:58 PM   #3
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Thanks Eric--- it does help. I do plan on using a monopod for assistance in those situations where light is severely limited (i.e.; morning services/etc where not much natural light can enter the building,,,)- as a tripod can be cumbersome when trying to get to another vantage point. I've since spoken with a person who uses the 75-300 IS and had had great success. She showed me some picd including 13X19 photos that she said were taken in "less than favorable lighting" and they were beyond acceptable (some minor things a phot-o-phile might complain about but not the average newlywed). Anyway, as always thanks for you feedback.

Drew
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