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Keywords: Canon EF Wide Mid Tele Zoom 35mm IS Stabilized USM Tested


rfwilliams

Registered: August 2009
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by rfwilliams
Review Date: 7/1/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $325.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Focal Range, weight, IS
Cons: Aperture

Not a bad lens. It deserves a better rating than it is getting.
I use this lens in Av mode, and when I can I zoom to 135mm, set the aperture to 8, and get pretty sharp pictures at just about any focal distance.
This is one of my favorite treking lenses
dugong5pm

Registered: October 2012
Posts: 52
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by dugong5pm
Review Date: 10/20/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $250.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: price, focal range, IS, light
Cons: none

This is the best walkaround/travel lens for fullframe users. I prefer this than the more expensive 24-105L. Yes, the L-series will give you (slightly) better results, but for more money and weight (duh).


I love this lens because of the portability. It's lightweight while provides a very good and usable working range (from wide to medium telephoto). It almost can do anything from landscapes to good portraits. the IS also comes in handy for the longer focal lengths. I bought this lens for $250 used (mint). For that price, it's totally a bang for the buck!
MartinM

Registered: November 2008
Posts: 29
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by MartinM
Review Date: 4/4/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $400.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Accurate and decent fast AF, IS, focal length, decent sharp results
Cons: no hood, no leather case

I have this lens on my 5D Mark II.


It delivers a very usable focal range. Nothing similar available as L lens, which is a pitty.


IS does well and image quality is very good for its price. I feel that 90% of the shooters out there would not notice the difference between the 24-105L and a 28-135 in terms of IQ.


I have really seen worse lenses than this one. Who is going to complain for that price.


Very usable for filming too!


Only drawback is the lens hood which is not included and need to be purchased separately.
davidmarquesneves

Registered: April 2011
Posts: 2
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by davidmarquesneves
Review Date: 9/13/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $490.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Price, all purpose, not rotating filter, AF ring overide
Cons: Zoom ring not smoothly, not so sharp

Considering the price, is a fantastic lens.
Not so sharp, but enough.


Is the MID, MID,MID in price, sharper and focal range.
The first step to 24-105 L F/4 IS.
chlky0001

Registered: June 2010
Posts: 1
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by chlky0001
Review Date: 6/14/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: zoom range, IS, Image Quality, Price, Construction, USM
Cons: A bit wider would have been perfect, Color fringe

I have been using this lens on 5D for travelling. The light weight, zoom range, image stabilization and USM make this lens very handy to use. The image quality of thins lens is very good, center sharpness may rival many L lens once you use a smaller aperture. corner is also very good when small aperture is used.

Although the lens is primarily constructed with plastic, the build quality is not as bad as it looks like. I accidentally dropped the lens on rock from about 1.5m above ground. Nothing happened to the lens while my Hoya filter broke.


The lens produces neutral color, not so vibrant to my taste, but can certainly be post processed in photoshop. There is also color fringes easily visible. Also I wish it could start from 24mm.


For the price, this lens is great on full frame. On crop sensor camera, it's too long for normal use but too short for tele.
jt354

Registered: May 2010
Posts: 9
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by jt354
Review Date: 5/9/2010 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Lightweight, USM, IS
Cons: Optical quality, zoom creep, zoom range on 1.6x

I received this lens with purchase of my 40D, and sold it on ebay within a few months. The focal range is impressive, but 28mm on the wide end renders it nearly useless as a walkaround/landscape lens on crop. Image quality is nothing spectacular. The zoom creep is very annoying, and the manual focus ring is trash. For a $200 surcharge, the 28-135mm is a reasonably good lens. For $400 retail, it's a waste of money.
amqp

Registered: March 2010
Posts: 1
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by amqp
Review Date: 3/26/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $400.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good speed and optical quality
Cons: Hood is extra

To take the best pictures you cannot just put this lens on and go to shooting. This lens needs time and if you spend some time with it this lens will be your best friends. It is a great budget lens for people like me.
ifi

Registered: March 2010
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by ifi
Review Date: 3/25/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $350.00| Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good built, good range, USM is quiet, Focus ring is easy to use, IS works
Cons: None

This was my very first lens. I still use it and it works great. This is my default walk-around lens. I like the colors and sharpness.
J Thompson

Registered: March 2010
Posts: 1
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by J Thompson
Review Date: 3/16/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $450.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Auto Focus and Image Stabiliser
Cons: Zoom creep

I bought this lens as a 'walk around' for my film SLR and crop-sensor DSLR.


On my film camera it works fine, with an ideal zoom range and fast/accurate auto focussing. I now only use 100 ISO slide film and stop down to at least f5.6 so it needs reasonable light.


On my DSLR zoom range is 45-215 - not the most exciting! - and image quality even stopped down is disappointing.


This lens is now permanently attached to my film camera. I've invested in an EF-S 17-55 f2.8 IS and EF 70-200 f4 L IS for my DSLR.
Chazz D

Registered: October 2009
Posts: 4
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Chazz D
Review Date: 12/17/2009 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Build quality ok, end of lens does not rotate during focusing, Ring type USM,
Cons: End of lens a bit wobbly, IS mechanism is older generation and loud, Image Quality

I used this lens for a few months on a Canon 20D and finally decided it was not worth the money. I know some people brag like there is no tomorrow about the image quality of this lens. But I can say that the copy I had was nothing to brag about. I get consistently sharper and clearer pictures with my 18-55IS kit lens. If you are lucky and you get a good copy of this lens then it might be worth it. Otherwise I would look at other lenses.


Also if you are using this on a crop camera, like most people, the 28mm (44.8mm on a crop camera) will often leave you wanting a lens that will go wider. So for me it does not make an ideal walk around lens even if the image quality was great.


If mine had the image quality of even my kit lens I would have kept it and went with a 10-22mm or something for the wide angle stuff.
twmagoo

Registered: December 2007
Posts: 4
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by twmagoo
Review Date: 7/24/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $200.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Fast USM, IS works good, IQ is good
Cons: none

I found my copy of this lens went beyond my expectations. It is sharp enough in its category and price range. IS works good in some low light situations. Would highly recommend the lens to anyone.
f43tgv

Registered: September 2007
Posts: 16
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by f43tgv
Review Date: 2/18/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Cheap, sharp, IS
Cons: not much

I bought my first copy of this lens quite recently, secondhand to use as a longer lens on my 30D, I have the 10-22, and as a lens to use on my Eos 1 with film.


I dont pay to much attention to lens reviews in magazines, the disparity in their conclusions does make me wonder if they do actually test them at all, preferring to draw my own conclusions.


For not a lot of money this has been a pleasant surprise, giving the equivalent of 216 at the long end on the 30D, long enough for me , and usable IS of about two stops which is very useful.


Results on film are very good too. This may be an old lens but a very good one, excellent value for money which is important at the moment and in view of its versatility a keeper. Dont underestimate this lens!
MrAdventure

Registered: June 2008
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by MrAdventure
Review Date: 7/1/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Convenient focal range, Image Stabilised, Ultrasonic Motor, Light Weight
Cons: Wobbly telescopic rings, No lens Hood, Slight softness at 135mm

I've spent 3 months with the 28-135mm IS USM and it's always worked as expected in a variety of shooting situations and conditions. While it doesn't have the background blurring power of my 50 and 85mm 1.8 primes, it's not half bad. If the subject is far enough away from a busy background you can get a pretty smooth blur.


The USM is fast and AF is accurate and quick even in low light where most lenses will hunt for a second or two.


Image stabilisation is pretty good for an older implimentation. My pictures are more sharper from frame to frame than not.


Nice to have a metal mount!


I was very annoyed to have to pay $35 for a separately sold lens hood.


Conclusion: This is a very good walk-around lens. It will capture expansive landscapes while delivering tightly framed portraits from a decent distance.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/tallchocolateguy/sets/72157605891646885/


http://www.flickr.com/photos/tallchocolateguy/sets/72157605625785529/


http://www.flickr.com/photos/tallchocolateguy/sets/72157605611908552/
touristguy87

Registered: July 2007
Posts: 36
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by touristguy87
Review Date: 8/6/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: nice zoom range, allows the 400D to stretch its legs
Cons: the IQ and focus quality was just horrible under ~50mm

This was my third attempt to find a good lens for my new 400D, my first DSLR...I found this to be a real hard lens to shoot while walking around downtown, it just clashed with my instinctive shot-vision...I ended-up having to leave a good # of shots alone and shoot only at scenes that were a block or two away, at least. It is just not very good for short-range work. The focus reliability is not very good. It seemed to come into its own beyond 50mm, and I got some very nice shots at 100-135mm that really made me have second thoughts about taking it back and not buying one. Even with the F3.5-F5.6 it was fast enough at night for handheld shooting, incurring a penalty of about a stop relative to the 17-55 F2.8 that I had at the time. Plenty of handheld 133mm shots at ISO800, no problem. It's a good midrange zoom. Just goes to show what Canon could do if they tried to make a "superzoom". But it is way too tight to shoot wide-angle of anything like a building inside of 30 feet. Very difficult to use close-up neglecting the focus reliability issue. I would just walk away and then shoot longrange and got much better results that way.
Toco1980

Registered: May 2007
Posts: 5
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Toco1980
Review Date: 5/2/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $500.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: zoom range, IS, fast and silent auto focus, image quality
Cons: zoom creep, some wobbling, a bit soft at long end, hood is extra

I just bought this lens a few weeks ago, and so far I find it to be a very good walk-around lens.
hitendra

Registered: February 2007
Posts: 11
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by hitendra
Review Date: 4/15/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Image Stabilizer.
Cons: Jerky zoom ring.

Check the results here…
http://www.hitendrasinkar.com/photoblog/index.php?x=browse&category=24&pagenum=1
random

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 10
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by random
Review Date: 1/15/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $490.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: very convenient (almost 5x) zoom range, ~2-stop IS, decent build quality, fast & quiet AF by ring USM, decent image quality
Cons: poor corner sharpness especially at wide angle, very obvious geometric distortions at both ends of the focal range

Pros: very convenient (almost 5x) zoom range, ~2-stop IS, decent build quality, fast & quiet AF by ring USM, decent image quality in terms of sharpness & contrast


Cons: poor corner sharpness especially at wide angle, very obvious geometric distortions at both ends of the focal range, some CA & vignetting wide open



Been using this lens since the film days, and it was fantastic during that time. In today's digital era, the flaws of this lens becomes apparent even on a 1.6x FOVCF sensor body. It somehow loses a bit of color & contrast when used on a DSLR, maybe because of the lack of digital-optimized lens coatings. Barrel distortions on the wide end of the range is still obvious even on a cropped-sensor body.


The zoom range is also not optimal for general-purpose use on a 1.6x FOVCF body; I find that it's not wide enough on the short end, especially indoors.


IQ-wise, it's better than most of the other consumer-level zooms, which is to be expected given the price. 1st-generation IS is good for 2-stops at most, but it's still better than nothing.


Overall, it's still a good lens to have for walkaround purposes, but on 1.6x FOVCF bodies, consider getting the slightly-more expensive EF-S 17-85 f/4-5.6 IS USM if the wide-end is more important than the tele-end.
eosphoros

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 2
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by eosphoros
Review Date: 1/9/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $410.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: A great walk-around lens. Mine is quite sharp. Better than expected.
Cons: None. Should come with a hood.

This was my first Canon lens. The IS is great, giving two stops. I had some reservations about buying this lens because of reports of softness and loose barrel. My example suffers from none of these problems and talking to other users of the same lens, they too have no complaint. The sharpness is surprising, rivaling that of my 'L' lens. Good color and contrast. And it's light too and won't wear you out carrying it around all day.
Lee Jay

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 16
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Lee Jay
Review Date: 1/7/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $330.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good optics, low price, IS, great range
Cons: A little long as a walkaround on 1.6 crop, slow at the long end

Pretty good lens. I only sold mine for the 24-105 for the extra stop on the long end and the extra 4mm on the short end.
adobo

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 17
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by adobo
Review Date: 1/7/2007 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $440.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap alternative/upgrade path from kit lens.., IS for a cheap price (relatively)
Cons: Too wide from crop, Wobbly double barrel design

Except for the IS, there is nothing really special bout this lens.. Well if you are a collector I believe this lens pioneered a lot of firsts..


Anyway, back to the lens.. The IS is *still* effective, image quality is good enough.. on its own I LIKE this lens.. But when you start comparing it to others.. bah..


I guess its the cheapest in the general purpose bunch (17-40 f/4L, 17-50 f/2.8 IS, 24-105 f/4L, 24-70 f/2.8) But you decided on whether buying this lens (and then selling it later on when you upgrade) is worth the hassle.. I mean, of course you lose money on the resale.. but it's your call..


If you're planning to get something better than the kit lens and then never upgrade again.. then yeah, this is good enough..


But if you are a serious shooter and plan to invest on better lens later on.. just skip this..
Wolfini

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 10
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Wolfini
Review Date: 1/5/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $450.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Range, IS, AF, close distance
Cons: Contrast, long distance

This is a little difficult to review, as I have many different experiences with the optical performance.


To concentrate on the good things first I can say that the range is very useful for some applications, the build quality is absolutely satisfactory for my needs, AF is fast and accurate, and IS can be quite useful at times.


IQ is a mixed bag. After shooting with the lens for about 3 years, I have the feeling that results at close range are really great. So for portraits and walks with family and friends this is really a very good lens with great IQ. Also the focal length range is ideal for this purpose.


On the other hand long range results are often quite disappointing, with low contrast and resolution, dull colors and some decentering flaws appearing here and there. So although this would be a great kit together with an Ultra-WA, I prefer to leave the lens at home for landscape outings, as I know I might be disappointed (although some shots may still turn out very nicely).


Perhaps I should also add, that I have very high demands about IQ, and compare this to some of the best glass out there (85/1,8, 200/2,8L, Sigma 18-50/2,8).
crmorse

Registered: January 2007
Posts: 11
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by crmorse
Review Date: 1/5/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $450.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: IS works great, good price
Cons: lower price means some compromises, weight

This is my main walkaround lens although it's too long for most indoors use on crop-factor digital cameras.


Pros:
* Probably one of the best price/performance ratios in Canon's lineup if you don't mind paying for IS. It's not L glass but it's a big step up from the bargin lenses
* IS works as advertised. The only limition is motion blur if your subject is moving. For still lifes I have successfully shot 135mm @ 1/8 second!
* Very good range for a walkaround on full frame cameras although crop factor users will find it a bit long
* CA and sharpness are both good.
* Contrast is execellent compared to 3rd party lenses.
* Colors seem to have very good saturation and punch.


Cons:
* Its heavy by comparison to non-L lenses. L users will probably not notice a difference
* Soft at the corners at 135mm even at f/8 even on a crop factor (at least my copy is)
* Slow. At 135mm its f/5.6 which rules out all but daylight shooting unless a strong flash/lighting is used.
silverbluemx

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 16
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by silverbluemx
Review Date: 1/4/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $350.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Sharp, good build quality, IS is efficient.
Cons: Cant replace the kit lens because 28mm is too long on a DSLR.

I've had this lens quite a short time, because I found that the Sigma 18-125 was a lot more convenient than the 18-55 + 28-135 couple, but after some tests I think that it can be a great lens if you don't need wide angle on a DSLR.
Image quality is quite good wide open at 28mm, but needs to be stopped down a little at the long end. I found the colors to be a little different than those from my other lenses but I liked them.
The Image Stabilisation is efficient, I've been able to shoot sharp pictures at 1/30s at 135mm (more than 200 equiv.).
Build quality is good, I never experienced zoom creep on my copy.
I have never tested its EF-S equivalent (17-85) so I can't say how it compares with it.
llbeanie1

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 17
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by llbeanie1
Review Date: 1/1/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros:
Cons:

is works great, good walk around lens
boysennumba5

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by boysennumba5
Review Date: 12/28/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cost, size
Cons: Build Quality, aperture

This lens makes a good walkaround lens for somebody who wants something with a longer reach than a kit lens. The IS feature works well for this kind of use, but the slow aperture (especially at the long end) pretty heavily limits it to pretty bright situations if anything is moving.


My personal experience showed that the largest problem with this lens was primarily the build quality. I don't baby my gear, and in the course of scrambling some rocks in Utah the camera swung (it was on the strap around my neck) into the rocks. While it was moving somewhat quick, the scratches on the barrel appeared to be essentially surfacy.


Shortly thereafter, in extremely difficult to predict situations, I noticed massive blurring issues on the left side of my frames (this is on a 20D, so I'd hate to see how bad it was on a full-frame). It made the lens almost completely unusable for serious work, and later sold it as-is.


If you shoot in pretty comfortable situations, this lens ought to serve pretty well. The cost makes it a good choice for a walk-around lens for a non-pro, especially if there is any sharing between film and digital bodies.
Xtian

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Xtian
Review Date: 12/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $400.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great walkaround lens. good focal length range. IS
Cons: not really that good in low light of course

This is a great lens to have when you're just walking around... during daylight. Take candid shots, take city shots, take landscape. But as any other mid-end zoom, it is a general purpose lens that can't do any one thing well, but does everything decently. And I recently moved to a sub-frame digital from film so it has become a 40mm-215mm lens which is still useful in that regard, as I shoot mostly narrow than wide.


I am more of a prime lens shooter (35mm 2.0, 85mm 1.8) because I need fast lenses for low-light indoor photography without being able to use a flash (church events such as a Christmas banquet). I definitely can't use this lens without a flash indoor even with the IS.


But this lens was made to be taken everywhere and if there's only one lens I can take where I need a wide range, then this is the only thing I have.


Sharpness is adequate. My comparison comes from my 85mm 1.8 which is currently the sharpest thing I've got.


Colors are muted also compared to my 85mm 1.8.


I maybe use this lens 10% of the time. Most of the time I just go for my prime lenses. I'd recommend you figure out where you do most of the shooting and get a prime lens that has better image quality and speed.


But if you haven't figured out what you like to shoot, this would be a good lens to start then you'll know if you like to shoot wide/narrow, macro/close-up/far, action/portrait... once you get that figured out go get one or two good prime lenses =D
jraNL2

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by jraNL2
Review Date: 12/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: relatively small, IS, focal range, relatively good image quality, price
Cons: average build quality, not top glasses used

My - second hand purchased - copy of this lens must be dated from the earlier release period, so around 1998/99. The serialnumber at the bottom says in faint digits 2702xxxE. Nonetheless it's a fine lens with not so great build quality. It's a true midrange in everything. There are a bit wobblings all over its duo-cam construction and a faint squeak sound of plastic against plastic when zoomed out. Strange enough I find this lens rather sympathetic with its useful range of zoom and relatively good image quality, which is just below that of the L image quality. Let's see a sample here:


http://www.photo.net/photos/jim_rais


The IS is a useful factor and can be a "life" saviour between having a good shot and just a blurry Thumbs Down!one. Its zoom range is great when used with either a 35mm film or FF DSLR camera to function as a pleasant walk around lens. This doesn't automatically mean with a crop factor DSLR, in this respect 1.6x, it suddenly becomes worthless. Far from it. With its 35mm equivalent 45-216mm and combined with the EF-S 10-22mm this 28-135mm lens makes a very useful duo for travelling around with just two relatively small and light lenses which can handle almost anything photographable without having to pay a visit to a physiotherapist after getting home.


Still a pity that Canon doesn't want to invest a bit more in this useful lens. With a better build quality and a better glass, this would surely be a top lens. Of course there's still a EF 24-105mm L, but the price is nearly three times over the 28-135's.


Recommended? Yes. Though this lens lacks the L quality in terms of both build and image quality, it remains a sympathetic lens with its good results. Personally, this one will be with me for a long time.
jlam

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 4
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by jlam
Review Date: 12/17/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $395.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Affordable, well built, equiv. 216mm for dSLR users at the long end, IS, quiet
Cons: Slow (aperture), equiv. 45mm for dSLR users at the short end

This is currently the primary lens on my XT (as of 12/06). I’ve had this lens for 1-1/2 years now. The first thing you notice is the weight. There are times when I have to hold and shoot with one hand. That’s hard. This is not a flaw. It’s just fact of life.


The image quality is not noticeably different than the kit lens in practical use which, in my view, is good enough for everyday use. There is always a slight softness in the pictures (I use the max. aperture whenever possible). The saving grace for this lens is IS.


It’s too bad that Canon offers this affordable walkaround lens for 35mm users but for APS-C users, the equivalent (17-85 IS) was $200 more (not to mention the slightly slower aperture) at the time of my purchase. Yikes!


All in all, this is a worthy investment given that there is no other affordable IS lenses to choose from!
dennisc

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by dennisc
Review Date: 12/14/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $570.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Image stabilizer
Cons: Not wide enough on a cropped sensor body

The choice between this lens and the EF-S17-85 is a tough one if you are shopping for a decent zoom.


I chose this lens over the other because it is cheaper, has a longer tele end and works on full frames. Plus I already have the EF-S 18-55 kit lens so there is no point repeating the focal lengths.


So what is this lens good for?


It is good for covering stage events when you can't get too close. Yes, it doesn't go very wide on a cropped sensor body but it you need the coverage, just take a few steps behind...


It is also good for portrait shots. Get the white balance correct and the skin tones will come out perfect.


This lens is also good for covering field events especially if there is good light. This lens is a bit slow on the tele end but with enough daylight, it will actually do its job.


In brief, a nice lens to have but not an essential one unless you see a great bargain for it...
SamuelMV

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by SamuelMV
Review Date: 12/14/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $450.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Cheap IS lens, aceptable IQ for a 5x zoom
Cons: Construction, 45mm in APS-C (not wide enough), slow and variable aperture

This is the main lens on my 30D, where it becomes a 45-216mm, not wide enough for my taste.


The IQ is aceptable considering that it's a 5x zoom: but it's quite soft until you stop down to f8, and has CA.


The IS is its main selling point, but it's a first generation IS, so only 1-2 stops advantage, no panning suport nor tripod detection.


It focuses fast and has Full Time Manual, but at the tele end I have found that the focal length changes a lot with the focusing!!!


The construction isn't very good: the lens barrel moves a lot and sucks dust inside the lens. It also has some zoom creep.


This isn't a fast lens, the f3.5 at 28mm it's not really usable. It's f5.6 at 135mm, and you *need* to stop down to f8 to have an aceptable IQ. The IS helps, but if you are shooting a moving element you are screwed.


The bokeh and color rendition are ok, maybe a little bit warm.
mxwphoto

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 12
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by mxwphoto
Review Date: 12/11/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $450.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great walk-around without breaking your wallet
Cons: 28mm on crop camera = 45mm full frame equivalent - not wide enough

For over a year, this lens has been my walk-around of choice. It's light, provides good zoom, and has IS. IS helped a lot when my hands weren't very steady early on, less so now, but still handy to have. The tele end allows for good captures of close by wildlife while the entire range makes for good portrait lengths. It's not as sharp as can be, but for the price, it's not expected to be. The only problem is that as a 45mm equivalent wide, it's just not wide enough sometimes. If you don't shoot a lot of grand landscapes, it shouldn't be a problem - but keep the kit lens close by in case you need it. If you do need a lot of wide but are on a budget, the 17-85 IS might work for you.
sviatoslav

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by sviatoslav
Review Date: 12/10/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $425.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: IS, versatile focal range
Cons: Colors seem a little bland

Bought this lens over a year ago (nov '05) and it is almost always on my camera! The IS works wonders. If you need fantastic bokeh, get a prime lens... but if you want a great all-purpose walk-around lens this is it.
terryf

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 10
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by terryf
Review Date: 12/4/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $435.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Light weight, low price for an IS zoom.
Cons: Some problems in image quality.

My copy of the 28-135Is may have had more CA that the copy tested by SLR gear. I found it to be frequently objectionable in the corners even on my 1.6x crop cameras. And it was difficult to remove in Photoshop. Another problem with my copy was "zoom creep". There was a lot of looseness in the lens barrel. When I would take a picture at a shorter focal length and then remove the camera from my eye, tilting it so that the lens pointed down - it would zoom out to 135 by itself. For these reasons I sold it and replaced it with the much more expensive 24-70L. Despite these complaints I am obliged to say that I used the lens for 4 years and did obtain many excellent images. While I do rate the 28-135 IS lens as recommended that is beause it provides good value for the price. The IS works well and when the lens is stopped down the image quality is very good. People who feel that they can not afford an "L" zoom should definitely consider this lens.
awalker

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by awalker
Review Date: 11/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Lightweight, IS
Cons: Build quality poor

Useful FL range on 20D and FF EOS 30 (film). Lightweight with useful IS function. Picture quality not bad, but not outstanding. I sold this lens though - build quality is poor, very plastic, lots of play in the extended barrel and this made it less than a pleasure to use. Replaced it with a 24-105 f4 L (more expensive but, IMHO, worth it!).
dccps

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 13
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by dccps
Review Date: 11/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $380.00| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: IS works pretty well, image resolution is very good, color is true
Cons: resulution is not as good as "L" glass, falls off at highest telephoto, occasionally locks up camera

This lens is okay for general shooting if you don't really want or need to go wide, but I typically use other optics much more. I found the range, equivalent to 50-210 (rounded off) less than ideal for shooting for the kind of images I do (landscapes, people in context, architecture... Although I indicate that I would not recommend this lens, it is mostly due to the weak field of view for a reduced size sensor. Images are, typically for Canon, quite definitely good enough to print to the reasonable limits of the sensor.
jeffn

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by jeffn
Review Date: 11/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $500.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Very good walk-around lens. No glaring deficiencies. IS works well.
Cons: Consumer grade lens which requires stopping down (f5.6 to f) for best sharpness.

The combination of IS and the 28-135mm range makes this an ideal walk-around lens.


But it's still a slow, consumer-grade, 5-to-1 zoom. So it's a compromise. But a very good one!


I have no technically bad images from this lens but not very many great ones!
freetoken

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 9
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by freetoken
Review Date: 11/19/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: very convenient range for FF, decent close focus capability
Cons: distortion at 28mm

This is my walkaround lens on a 5D. On a FF digital or a film camera 28-135 is an ideal range, less so for an APS-C crop camera.


No need in restating the tested results, but here is how the lens' attributes affect me:


On occasion the distortion at 28mm is bothersome. No issues at the other focal lengths.


Vignetting is noticeable at the wider apertures, but easily correctable in software if needed.


The IS may only be first generation but I find it very useful and effective. IS is a bit noisier than on some other Canon lenses.


Resolution is adequate and indeed I have found (as other members here have noted) that in the middle focal lengths resolution is very good.


Color is a warmer than some Canon lenses and the contrast is a bit less than other lenses I have in these focal lengths, but still capable of high quality results.


Build quality is adequate but the front element wobbles a bit when extended, and there is no lock to keep the lens from extending accidentally.


Close focus ability is useful - it can get to about 1:5 magnification.


Over all it is a very useful though not outstanding lens. I do not feel the need to buy the newer 24-105L zoom as if I really want higher resolution images (or a brighter viewfinder) I just use one of the single focal length ("prime") lenses in this range.


On my 300D I find this still a useful lens but not wide enough for a walk around lens. Those of you with an APS-C camera probably should look at the EF-s alternative (17-85IS).
amckeown

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 2
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by amckeown
Review Date: 11/15/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: IS & Image Quality
Cons: No Fixed Aperture

I originally purchased this lens used back in my film days. It carried over into the digital world working like a true workhorse on a 10D.


Today this is my main walk around lense on a 1dMkIIn. I can not reccomend this lense enough to the bang for the buck.
gadgetguy

Registered: May 2006
Posts: 62
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by gadgetguy
Review Date: 11/14/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Image Stabilizer
Cons: When on a 1.6x DSLR, not wide enough

When I slap this on my EOS-3 (film!) it's got the almost perfect walk-around range. On a 1.6x crop DSLR, though, it's a little short on the wide end.


Colors are a little flat and lack a lot of 'pop'. It also uses the earlier generation of IS so it's not as effective and a little noisy (you can hear it working).
Magdy Kamel

Registered: June 2006
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Magdy Kamel
Review Date: 6/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Photographer "Moda Inc., France
Cons:

Very Convenient and easy to use type of lens specially the outdoor projects
pj1974

Registered: February 2006
Posts: 6
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by pj1974
Review Date: 2/10/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: 5x Zoom range, accurate AF, sharp (esp stopped down a bit), USM, useful IS
Cons: No f2.8 aperture (but then it would be bigger & more expensive!)

After reading various reviews, tests and most importantly seeing real life photos others had made with this lens, I bought it in November 2005. And have been VERY happy with this lens since then! After over 4 years with digital point and shoot cameras, this was my first lens for my first DSLR.


For me it has a very useful zoom range (with a 1.6x crop factor on my Rebel XT / 350D) - I know this is a personal thing, with many people saying the 28mm (=45mm) is not wide enough for them. However my style of photography tends to go for the medium wide to telephoto end of things more (it's reach gets the equivalent of 215mm in 35mm terms). Anyway I have the kit lens which does a satisfactory job for when I really need 18mm (=28mm) wide angle.


Sharpness is good, especially so in adequate light and stopped down one or two stops. The sharpness of my lens seems to match the test results that this website found - I get good sharpness at all focal ranges and even wide open apertures are very decent at all zoom levels.


Of course I would like it to have a constant f2.8, but then this wouldn't be a decently priced, medium weight consumer lens would it! I'm very happy with it: build quality seems ok (not brilliant, but acceptable by my standards). I've heard of people using it for years as their workhorse lens and I can see the same for me. For low light work I have the 50mm f1.8 mark II.


This 28-135mm lens is on my camera most of the time (about 95% of the time.) It focusses well, has a flexible zoom range, is sharp and has USM as well as IS for added useful convenience too.


For the price I think this is a great lens: I get good edge and corner sharpness and very good centre sharpness. Maybe copy to copy quality does vary as I've read, so I think I definitely got a very decent copy and I'm thankful! Of course if I was a professional with a big budget I'd probably use an L lens, but as it is I find this lens does a great job in meeting the needs for nearly all of the landscape, nature, portrait / people and even some of the close up photography that I do.


Well done Canon with this one!
Blackstone

Registered: February 2006
Posts: 1
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Blackstone
Review Date: 2/8/2006 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $400.00| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Good allaround lens for the money
Cons: Bad blur at 28 mm infinity

Not bad at all when using it from 35 mm above. But awful picture quality at 28 mm! Cannot shoot a picture without a great amount of awful blur at this focal length.
I dont recommend it!
fabio777

Registered: December 2005
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by fabio777
Review Date: 12/12/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $600.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Image quality, stabilizer.
Cons: costruction.

Is an excellent zoom for film camera and also for digital camera. Very good price. some dribble in costruction and slow autofocus compare with other canon usm lenses. (probably because is the first canon stabilize lens).
Excellent image quality from 35 to 80 mm good at 28 and 135.
jyli19

Registered: November 2005
Posts: 7
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by jyli19
Review Date: 11/3/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $409.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Useful IS function, good build quality, execellent all around lens
Cons: Optional Lens hood, no carry bag/case, prone to dust in elements

Excellent image quality when stepped down. A combination of features makes this lens a great walk around lens. When mounted on a 1.6 cropped DSLR, its focal length may not be as useful as when used on a film or full frame DSLR.
saudidave

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 2
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by saudidave
Review Date: 10/30/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $600.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good image quality, fast focussing, IS is excellent
Cons: build quality is mediocre, annoying lens creep

Excellent all round walkabout lens but on a 1.6x crop, not wide enough in town.
Anakin

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 5
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by Anakin
Review Date: 10/21/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $300.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: range, IS , good AF , light
Cons: aperture

I use this lens with my EOS 3 ,
it's a very good range for reportage, walk around, portraits.


IS is good for low light, but not equal with L series
it's a little noisy.


anyway, for the price, it's a good lens, very easy to use.
andrewc

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 3
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by andrewc
Review Date: 10/20/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $550.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: excellent range, IS, quite sharp if you get a good copy, fulltime manual focus
Cons: doesn't feel as solid as I'd like

This lens is the one I use more than any other because of its versatile range and the added security that IS gives me. Knowing the basics such as stopping down a bit to get the most sharpness helps to achieve great results from this lens. It's the perfect general-use lens, and one I've not found a suitable replacement for. I bought mine right when they were introduced in the late 90's, hence the higher cost. I'd love for it to be a 2.8 in addition to the IS, or a 24-135 2.8IS, but then the cost would be rediculous. This is a great lens, one of my favorites for sure.
ggriffith

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 4
Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM review by ggriffith
Review Date: 10/19/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $446.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Decent Built, Sharp Images, Affordable compared to L glass
Cons: No Hood included, Plastic Body, Not the "Smoothest" Zoom ring (could be fixed)

I've used this lens for almost 2 years in a personal and professional environment. It has been a handy lens and is a terrific "walking-around" lens. I frequently leave it on my 1D Mark II and use it as a main lens unless I want to shoot ultra-wide or tele. All in all this has been a nice lens with a good zoom range and great images.


Highly Recommened.


 






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