Initial impressions – although not an L lens it is solid, easy to handle and not too large to mount to Canon dslrs.
Ease of use – It has all the switches in the places you expect them to be, and the zoom is smooth and quick to operate, as is the auto focus. The IS is easy to operate, as is the MF/AF switch and manual focus. if you’re new to telephoto lenses then this will not intimidate you.
Features – IS which won’t help too much for sports but will help for lower shutter speed hand held shots. It has 2 IS modes, one for 2 way stabilisation and one for panning, typically used in sports or action shots. it has manual zoom and a lens lock for the 70mm position.
Image quality – great, perfect for weekend sports shots of the kids, portraits or even close ups of nature, although not a dedicated macro lens. seriously we are so spoilt today with choices of cameras and lenses, that its now getting more difficult to take a bad photo, unless of course you have trouble using AF or you cannot compose a picture correctly.
Compared with – not quite the same image quality as a L lens but depending on your level of skill most people would have trouble telling the difference. If you want the best, buy an L lens, but surprisingly this will come very close. L lenses are better optically and are generally weather and/or dust sealed.