Canon 500mm f/4L IS


Along with the 300mm f/2.8, the Canon 500mm f/4 has for years been considered one of the best telephoto lenses made.

Its reasonable size (considering its reach) and superb Image Stabilization system make this the lens of choice for wildlife and birding photography and the occasional choice for sports photographers. While some large photographers claim to handhold this lens, at least for a few shots, we strongly recommend a good tripod, preferably with a gimbal head or Wimberley Sidekick. This lens is still remarkably sharp even with a 2x teleconverter.

There is a updated version of this lens, the Canon 500mm f/4 IS II, that we now have available for rent.

Roger Cicala

Roger's Take

Roger Cicala

President of LensRentals.com

This is the “all around” supertelephoto. It’s a significantly smaller and easier to handle lens than the Canon 600mm f/4 or Canon 400mm f/2.8. It can be shot from a sturdy ball head while the larger lenses really require a gimbal head, and it can be shot handheld for at least a few shots before your arm gives out.

And now, it’s been replaced by the new 500mm f/4 IS MkII. But while supplies last, this gives you a really good supertelephoto lens at a much lower price than the new version.
March, 2013

Filter Size
8.53 lb
Minimum Focusing Distance
14.8 feet
Maximum Magnification
Angle of view: (full frame)
5 degrees
Zoom method
Image Stabilization
2 stop, tripod sensing, panning mode
Focusing System
Internal focus, Full time active, USM motor, focus limiting switch
Aperture Blades
8, curved, octagonal
Low Dispersion Elements
Fluorite Elements
Aspherical Elements
Weather Resistant
Flare resistance
Moderate ghosting, moderate contrast loss
  • Hood
  • Tripod Ring
  • Soft lens cover
  • Padded case or hard case

LensRentals.com offers rentals ranging in length from 1 to 90 days. The shopping cart will automatically update the quoted price as you adjust the length of your rental. Our most common rental periods are shown below:

Rental Period Waiver Price Rental Price Total Price Approximate Day Rate
3 days $31.00 $207.00 $238.00 $79.33
4 days $33.00 $222.00 $255.00 $63.75
7 days $44.00 $296.00 $340.00 $48.57
10 days $59.00 $400.00 $459.00 $45.90
14 days $77.00 $518.00 $595.00 $42.50
21 days $103.00 $696.00 $799.00 $38.05
30 days $130.00 $873.00 $1003.00 $33.43
45 days $169.00 $1140.00 $1309.00 $29.09
60 days $198.00 $1332.00 $1530.00 $25.50
90 days $255.00 $1717.00 $1972.00 $21.91
Rental Period Rental Price Approximate Day Rate
3 days $207.00 $69.00
4 days $222.00 $55.50
7 days $296.00 $42.29
10 days $400.00 $40.00
14 days $518.00 $37.00
21 days $696.00 $33.14
30 days $873.00 $29.10
45 days $1140.00 $25.33
60 days $1332.00 $22.20
90 days $1717.00 $19.08

LensRentals.com ships via the appropriate FedEx service necessary to have your rental arrive on the date selected. Return shipping is included in the shipping price, and we include a prepaid return label with your order - all you need to do is bring it to a FedEx drop-off location when your rental is complete. If you prefer UPS shipping, you can select it during the checkout process for about 10% more.

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The shopping cart can automatically quote shipping, even for multi-item and oversize orders. Shipping multiple items together offers a significant savings over shipping them individually.