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my 70-300mm lens is not allowing me to focus with my new T6i please help


I had a EOS Rebel xl for the past several years, 3 years ago I bought a 70-300 lense for close up shots. I take pictures of my son playing football, this year he started high scool and the night time shots started to blur when the lights came on, so I upgraded to the T6i. I went to take pics at his game last night and when i zoom in it will not take pics at all. why doesnt my lense work with this camera and what do I need to take these kind of pics The purple back ground is with my t6i the players in the red uniform is with my old EOS rebel xlIMG_0477.JPG[0]DC5_BAK_.jpg



OK, let me see if I understand.


You had a older Rebel and recently bought a Rebel T6i ?  You also have a ef-s 70-300mm lens?

The new camera and the old lens don't work like it did with the older Rebel?


What else has changed?  Typically the middle school football games are earlier in the day.  Is that true?  And, high school is in the evening?  So the first thing that comes to my mind is, you don't have enough light.  The AF can't lock on.  If AF won't lock on the camera will not work. 


If this is true there are a few things you can do.  One of the most important things is where you shoot from.  Has this changed?  Are you limited to the bleachers?  That is difficult.  Or, are you allowed to be on the field.  Much better.  Closer the better!


Set the T6i to use just the center focus point.  You can always use MF if need be.  You may be at the limit of the lens ability.  This lens is pretty soft at the 300mm (480mm for the Rebel) side.  There isn't anything you can do about that.  Both sample photos show a pretty slow shutter to me.  Action requires a pretty fast shutter angain depending where you are shooting from.

I will suggest you need at least 1/400 when you are zoomed all the way in.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!


Both of the Pictures are High school games roughly 7:30 - 8 pm with in the past two weeks, I knew how to adjust the Af in the older eos but by the 4th quarter the clarity would change, I thought the newer camera would change that.  And it is better in that sense.

As far as the lens all I can tell you is what is written on it, canon zoom lens EF 70-300mm So I assume we are talking about the same however these is not an s written after EF.

However if you notice the players in the red are crystal clear and much closer, and that is with the older rebel and the Ef 7o-300 lens. The other picture is with the T6i and the same lens but the clarity of the players is lost and I cannot zoom in as close.

Yes both pictures are from the bleachers, however when I was at the parade this week I had the same problem I cannot zoom at all I am stuck at 70 to 100 and here is the clarity of a picture taken while standing on the side of the road. You will see the face is off. I am used to being able to zoom in on the girl in the car but with the T6i I am forced to stay at the 70 and have the entire car, the camera will simply not take a picture if I zoom in past 100mm it does nothing.

I assume the problem is with the older lens can you recommend what lens to replace it with. I am in a panic I just bought this camera two weeks ago and sold my older camera to my daughter’s boyfriend, so all of the sudden I can’t get great pictures, and to be honest I am just a mom who aims and shoots pictures I do not understand all the technical things but I am trying. I also added a pic I took while on the field yesterday of my son, again to me his face looks off. Thanks for trying to help me.


Yes I noticed the difference in IQ but there is also a difference in exposure.  This indicates to me you had more light in the better photo.

If the camera can not focus (AF) it will not work.  So lets try something.  Switch to manual focus (MF switch on the lens).  Does it allow you to shoot at any zoom range now?  If it does, the not able to lock AF is the problem.  Why it can't lock on can be caused by several things.  Do you have another lens to try?  I guess you do as the 70-300mm isn't a very good general all around lens.  Its too big!

Does the different lens work as it should?  Try this out doors in good daylight.  Put the 70-300mm back on in good daylight to see if it works properly.


As you zoom the 70-300mm you automatically reduce the f-ratio to f5.6 (needs more light).  It probably does occur around 100mm.  You bought a very nice camera and it may be time to get a better lens that more matches it.  But first do the tests  recommended.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

If the other lens works and the 70-300 still doesn't work it is probably faulty and will need service.  What camera mode do you use?  Set it to 'P' for now.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

ok I went outside and took a pic from the back yard in P  and it worked no problem, I changed it to sport just to see if still worked in a different setting and it worked then I came inside and took a pic of the photo on my night stand all in full 300 mm and it also worked. Attached are the two photos one outside and inside on manual focus.  IMG_0556.JPGIMG_0564.JPG

OK, "Mom" it looks like the combo (lens and camera) works. So I believe the problem is insufficient light for AF at the football game.  Your choice is to use MF and focus yourself or invest in a better, translated more expensive, lens.  Remember you have a top of the line camera with a beginner entry level lens.  There is nothing wrong with that except there will be limits to what it can do.

When you shoot the games set the camera to P mode.  Set the ISO up to 3200, at least 1600 if grain is too much for you but with a T6i it shouldn't be.  This will not help AF but will make what you do get better.  Use just the center point focus square. Turn the others off.  Check your manual for this.  Get as close to the action as possible.  This is very important.


Learn how to shoot in RAW and how the edit/conversion happens. It is almost seamless with a T6i.  But RAW files have way more info recorded and can stand a lot more editing to make them even better.


As the time of the year changes, so does the available light at a given time.  IE, 7:30 PM in August is not the same as 7:30 PM in September.


Let me know how you do.  Maybe we can come up with some more tips.

EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!

I am looking at a lens online that looks just like mine however it says
Canon 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III Telephoto Zoom Camera Lens
the lens I currently have says macro 1.5m/4.9ft. would the telephoto make a difference?
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