Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II

Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II

This review covers


» Image Quality «


» Sample Pictures «

» Conclusion «

» Further Information «

Table of contents

Shot with the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II:

For a walk  (250mm / 400mm eff., f/5.6, 1/250s, ISO 100, APS-C)  © Gil De Sousa



EF-S 55-250mm
f/4-5.6 IS II

The EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II offers a huge zoom range in a compact and lightweight form factor at an affordable price. It is a very popular choice for wildlife and sports photography, portraits and other purposes. It comes with an excellent image stabilizer that offers 4 f-stops gain but lacks a decent USM type autofocus motor which is probably the lens's weakest spot. The micro motor autofocus used is accurate but slow which makes it difficult to use on fast moving targets. Focus motors of this type also don't allow you to override the autofocus manually unless you set the lens to MF mode first. The aperture range of the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II is mediocre and can make early morning or late evening wildlife shots rather difficult but that is to be expected of a lens in this price range.

The resolution of the lens is impressive but color fringes occur both in focused parts of the image and in out-of-focus parts and they are easily noticeable. Less noticable but present is the slight curvature of the focal plane, some barrel and pincushion distortion (depending on focal length) and a bit of corner shadow. Still the overall image quality of the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II is certainly above what I would expect for the price tag and probably good enough for most purposes. In comparison with its predecessor (the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS) the newer lens is not necessarily an upgrade but neither is it a big step backwards. The image quality is slightly better with the old version but its zoom ring is a little flimsy whereas the newer version's zoom ring is nice and tight. Both lenses make an excellent add-on to your kit if you already own the EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II.

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Further Information

Note: this lens has a predecessor - the Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS


-Data table

NameCanon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS II
Model year2011
Market price (Germany)€ 180
Market price (USA)$ 260
CompatibilityNot compatible with full frame cameras
Lens typeZoom
Aperture range at shortest focal lengthf/4 to f/22
Aperture range at longest focal lengthf/5.6 to f/32
Model No.?
Number of aperture blades7
Aperture blades are circular?Yes
Has image stabilization?Yes
F-stop gain of image stabilizer4
Number of image stabilizer modes1
Allows manual override during autofocus?No
Has filter thread?Yes
Filter size58 mm
Officially compatible with extenders?No
Has a metal lens mount?No
Weight14 oz
Diameter2.8 "
Length (mount surface to front end)4 "
Length - fully extended7 "
Length - fully extended with hood?
Shortest focal length55 mm
Longest focal length250 mm
Effective shortest focal length on cameras with APS-C sensor88 mm
Effective longest focal length on cameras with APS-C sensor400 mm
Minimum focus distance3.61 '
Maximum magnification0.31 x
Front element rotates when focusing?Yes
Front element rotates when zooming?No
Extends when focusing?Yes
Extends when zooming?Yes
Zoom lockable?No
Number of AF ranges1
Number of AF presets0
Length of AF preset recall ringn.a.
Sealed against dust and moisture?No
Seal requires filter to be present?n.a.
Has AF stop switch?Yes
Has AF stop button?No
Has distance indicator?No
Distance information is in EXIF data?Yes
Uses drop-in type filters?No
Drop-in filter sizen.a.
Length of zoom ring1.5 "
Length of focus ring0.5 "
Number of lenses12
Number of optical groups10
Lens Hood
Maximum diameter?
Model No.ET-60
Lens Cap
Weight0.4 oz
Length0.2 "
Model No.E-58
Tripod Mount
Maximum diameter?
Model No.?
Case / Pouch
Model No.LP1019



Image Quality