Should I Buy a 70-300mm Lens?

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Are you on the hunt for an affordable yet versatile lens? Maybe you’re pondering, should I buy a 70-300mm lens? A 70-300mm lens can help you produce different effects in photos, so we’re going to discuss reasons why you should own one, as well as limitations you need to consider.

Should I Buy a 70-300mm Lens? 

You should buy a 70-300mm lens if you want a telephoto lens with varying field views. Its focal length promotes shooting efficiency, particularly for travel, portrait, wildlife, sports, commercial, and wedding photographers.

Canon zoom lens

As you look to grow your photography gear, it’s best to learn the basic information about a lens so that you can better understand whether you should purchase a 70-300mm lens or not. 

Understanding the 70-300mm Focal Range

Photographers who need a wide focal range should buy a 70-300mm lens because it would let you zoom in and out at various shooting distances.

Keep in mind that the focal length provides the angle of view, determining how much of the scene you can capture or magnify. This is why a longer lens like the 70-300mm creates a narrower field of view and a higher magnification rate.

Reasons to Buy a 70-300mm Lens

There are several reasons why you should buy a 70-300mm lens. Among them is if your photography style typically has a reduced depth of field. This lens will suit your technique if you prefer snapping the background out of focus seamlessly.

Another reason why the 70-300mm lens is worth having is that it offers the ability to bring in distant objects. Some photographers favor tight shots with fewer background elements as opposed to wide scenes.

Furthermore, if you want to try standard zoom and macro lenses, yet you’re still saving up for individual lenses, the 70-300mm can provide you with these features. You won’t even have to worry about bringing multiple lenses at once, especially if you need to pack light.

Canon 70-300mm camera lens

Types of Photos to Shoot Using a 70-300mm Lens

If you’re still having an internal debate on whether you should invest in a 70-300mm lens or not, take a look at the kinds of images you can collect using this telephoto lens.

  • Sports photos: It’s challenging to shoot an indoor basketball game from the bleachers using a prime lens and expect to see detailed facial expressions of the players. Moreover, a wide-angle lens can cover fields, yet not close-up shots as you photograph from the sidelines. A 70-300mm lens can do all of these.
  • Portraits: While it’s acceptable to use shorter lenses in certain conditions, the focal range of these lenses tends to produce body distortion, especially in the face. In contrast, you can adjust a 70-300mm to around 85-105mm lens to fill the frame with the subject without distorting body features.
  • Wildlife and nature pictures: A 70-300mm lens is worth purchasing if you want to take images without going near subjects, mainly when photographing animals and insects you shouldn’t disturb their habitats. This also applies to hard-to-reach subjects, like birds flying in the sky or animals hiding in tree branches.
  • Travel photos: Traveling means you might shoot wide one moment, then tighter the next moment. Whether it’s for candid solo shots, group photos, sceneries, or nightlife, the versatility of the 70-300mm lens allows you to use only a single travel lens for a variety of images.
  • Event photos: Perhaps you’re a wedding videographer or an engagement photographer generally shooting outdoors. The combination of focal length, bokeh, and focus would let you shoot memorable images filled even with fast-moving subjects.
  • Commercial photos: The U.S. commercial photography industry reached a 1.9% growth, and you need the right lens if you’re preparing to become a professional commercial photographer. Buying a 70-300mm enables you to shift from environmental images to close-up shots for marketing and selling products.
Nikon 70-300mm lens

Limitations of the 70-300mm Lens

The longer focal length of the 70-300mm introduces motion shake when shooting handheld or without a tripod. It’s not as sharp as prime lenses because there are more moving mechanisms and optical elements inside. However, you can easily solve this by using fast shutter speeds, vibration reduction, and bigger apertures.

The narrower perspective limits the field view and the number of subjects you can capture in a single frame. Additionally, the low depth of field tends to focus more on the center subject while keeping the background and foreground blurry. So, this is quite challenging when using autofocus for videography.

In such cases, it may not be ideal for you to buy a 70-300mm lens as this kind of subject isolation and perspective don’t usually work for photographing interiors, architecture, landscapes, or cityscapes.


You should buy a 70-300mm lens if you want an all-around lens for outdoor, portrait, creative, and action shots. While it has some weaknesses, you can work around them as long as you play to its strengths. Consequently, you can achieve your unique photography style with the 70-300mm lens.

Kaitlin Cooper is an active professional wedding and portrait photographer in San Diego, California at Kaitlin Cooper Photography. She is also a contributor to many large publications, including Bridal GuideBustlePixpaWith Joy, and Hello Giggles.