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Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
181 531070 Jun 30, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
88% of reviewers $718.67
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.44
8.14
7.8
ef_28-135_35_1_

Specifications:
Standard zoom lens with an Image Stabilizer and high zoom ratio. With the Image Stabilizer turned on, you can obtain sharp, natural-looking pictures in dim lighting without using flash or a tripod. Very handy for places where flash is prohibited. Uses ring-type USM for swift, silent autofocus and full-time manual focus. Closest focusing distance is 20 in. (50 cm).


 


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DamienB
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Registered: Jan 24, 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 20
Review Date: Oct 24, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Good zoom range, IS, can be found much cheaper than RRP
Cons:
Build quality, sharpness, slow at the long end

A versatile and very useful good value lens. IS has been a boon for air to air photography, where it helps cancel out some of the camera ship's vibration (but I do mean *some*!).

It's never really as sharp as I'd like, and the construction is very plasticky and 'cheap' feeling - the way the extended barrel wobbles from side to side at full zoom is particularly worrying. But given the price of anything that even compares, it's sufficed for my needs up til now.

If it was a 28-135 f/2.8 IS, a bit sharper, and felt more solidly made it'd be perfect...

(price paid in UK )


Oct 24, 2004
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Location: United Kingdom
Review Date: Sep 27, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: IS, fairly light weight, good range, cheap
Cons:
small aperture, barrel extends out (and can suck dust), stepwise zooming (zoom creep), lens feels a little cheap

This is a fantastic standard lens for those of us who can't be bothered to spend more than twice the price on a 24-70 f2.8 L. Bear in mind that this is the only standard zoom in the Canon range that has IS - it has been tremendously important for me when shooting fountains and the like - handheld, at 28mm I can handhold at 1/10th sec and get perfect blurred water! This lens is light and compact, which is good too, since it fits into the little carry bag that came with my 300V.

And don't worry about the slightly shoddy build quality - it's image quality which matters, after all.


Sep 27, 2004
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Location: United Kingdom
Review Date: Jul 15, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: zoom range (on digital rebel), IS, moderate weight
Cons:
72mm filter size makes buying quality filters expensive

I bought this lens knowing that it was nowhere near an "L" glass lens. I am a relative newbie to the photography world; and as such, my budget does not allow me to spring for a 28-70mm f/2.8L. So if you look at it from the standpoint of this lens being a consumer zoom lens, its optics and build quality make a lot of sense.

All in all, I love my 28-135mm. It's got great range: 44.8-216mm on my digital rebel because of the 1.6x multiplication factor. In my opinion it's ability to go from a "normal" to telephoto makes it an ideal walking-around lens... especially if you don't want to lug around a tripod too. For me, at least, it's the IS that sells this lens.

Sure, it's not the sharpest lens in the world: definitely not "L" quality, and I have a less expensive prime lens that would hand the 28-135mm its head. BUT I recognize the lens for what it is -- a versitile zoom lens with a great stabilization component at a non-bank-breaking price.


Jul 15, 2004
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Mr645
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Registered: Jun 7, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 1303
Review Date: Jul 6, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $300.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Good range, not too costly
Cons:
Needs to be at F8 and smaller for good sharpness

My decade old 28-105 is ready to fall apart and I saw this 28-135 at the local repair shop. Anyway, I wish this lens was a bit faster, at F3.5-F5.6 it needs a lot of light. The IS feature helps but typically when light levels are low, you also open the aperture. This lens is not tack sharp at or near F5.6 so the IS is not as useful as I expected. It's a good everyday lens to keep on the camera, but not built to
"L" standards, but of course it does not cost like an "L" lens.

Jon


Jul 6, 2004
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enigmatics
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Registered: Jul 5, 2004
Location: Israel
Posts: 1
Review Date: Jul 5, 2004 Recommend? no | Price paid: $450.00 | Rating: 2 

Pros: IS
Cons:
too soft

I replaced 28-135 after half-year using on 17-40 f4 and started
to feel myself realy comfortable.
I guess Canon's engeneers need to learn from Olympus how to make
middle class zoom lense with such focal range.Before my Canon 10D I had Olympus E-10 with 35-140 mm lense - so this Oly lense can easy
bit 28-135 even without IS and USM!!!


Jul 5, 2004
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cgregb
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Registered: Apr 3, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 2
Review Date: Jul 5, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $429.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Price, Image Stabilization, good walk-around lens
Cons:
Not "L" glass, low contrast focus

This is not an "L" glass lens. So don't expect outstanding photos, just great ones. If this lens doesn't push you to "L" glass, nothing will. With the light weight and good range for a walk-around lens, you will have this on your camera much of the time. If you appreciate the quality of this lens, "L" glass is in your future. If not, you have not spent a lot of money to find out.

The IS feature allowed me to shoot a building at 9:00PM lit with incansdescent light in back of a reflecting lake, hand held ( 1 second). The picture was incredibly clear (not perfect). The quality of the pictures with this lens compared to the 300D kit lens is dramatically better. This lens is a great value for the money. My lens doesn't focus well in low contrast situations, though. But you can use it in manual mode and it works fine.

While not a professional lens, most prosumers will like this lens a lot!


Jul 5, 2004
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Jaymanpics
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Registered: Apr 26, 2004
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 13
Review Date: Jun 9, 2004 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros:
Cons:

BEWARE!! I bought this lens to complement my EOS 3 back in 1999 shortly after its release and have to say it never really impressed.
For starters mine only zoomed to approx 120mm and even though I treat all my equipment with respect it had to go back to Canon TWICE to get the zooming barrel repaired as it used to stick/lock up at shorter focal lengths.
Needless to say after the second repair I sold it on and replaced it with a 24-70f2.8L


Jun 9, 2004
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Location: United Kingdom
Review Date: May 22, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $39,000.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Good Sharp, Fast Focus, IS, Excellent construction
Cons:
Weight, The colors could be better a little, 72mm filter (77mm would be the ideal)

A great lens, in spite of not having the quality of a lens L it is able very well to be used by a professional without depreciating the quality of your work, highly recommended so that it looks for a great lens without needing to invest a lot of money.

May 22, 2004
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TwoBoy
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Registered: Jan 10, 2004
Location: South Africa
Posts: 25
Review Date: May 21, 2004 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros: 28~135 is a very useful range, IS is a big issue with me - I like it very much (when it works well), flexibility, light, controls are convenient.
Cons:
Very much a plastic offer, feels rather sloppily built at 135, nowhere near L class, no bag or lens hood makes for a bad image from the start. Not even an instruction book in my box. Lens zoom creeps and wobbles about.

Bought sight unseen on the recommendation of my Canon Dealer - HE HAS NOW EATEN HIS WORDS. To get any semi-decent results with a 10D it is essential to use the lens with the camera being in Program as opposed to Auto mode. The AF does not work nearly as well in AUTO mode and unless you take great care the focus will will be out.

I have replaced it with the 28~300L IS USM and what a difference - the 28~300 is very expensive but worth it. I just could not tolerate the lack of sharpness

IS is the only plus but the glass is so bad in the 28~135 why even bother to make it IS and give IS a bad name. BAD IS BAD. IF I COULD RATE IT WORSE I WOULD. UNUSEABLE!!!!!! RATING ZERO.

Don't think I only buy L lenses to be otherwise. The Canon 100mm f2.8 Macro shows that Canon can make non-L lenses of excellent quality. In my opinion this is not one of them.


May 21, 2004
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Location: South Africa
Review Date: Apr 8, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Very versatile, nice color and contrast, fast silent auto focus, light weight and not overly large.
Cons:
Build is so-so, not at its sharpest at either extreme of range.

This is the answer to the per verbal question "if you could only have one lens", or the "best walking around lens" questions.

Sometimes, aw heck a lot of times you just want to take one lens, this is it for me. This is one I can walk around the park with all day and not be wore out. You can bump up the ISO on your digital or add flash for most indoor stuff.

It is seldom the ideal lens for a shot but is almost never a bad lens for the situation.


Apr 8, 2004
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vince
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Registered: Mar 18, 2002
Location: China
Posts: 306
Review Date: Mar 13, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: IS really works. Great range. Silent AF and very versatile lens.
Cons:
Slow max aperture, bulky compared to the 28-105, large filters (72mm), optics could be better. Distortion at the wide and long ends.

This is probably the most versatile focal length range and this is one lens most would carry everywhere. IS really works and it has saved my butt many times, in low light. USM is silent.

However, for many situations I find the f/stops limiting, specially at the long end. f/5.6 is a bit too slow for many things, and this lens needs to be stopped down to f/8 for optimal performance. It's soft wide open. Also the AF is slower than most USM lenses I have (28-105 etc). Also this lens produces quite a bit of barrel distortion at the wide end and pincushions at the long end.

It's a nice lens, but I found myself using it less and less, because I either needed to shoot at faster apertures (f/8 is just too slow if I need to take the shot AND get a sharp image). I got myself a 28-70L and didn't miss the 28-135 much except for the IS in some situations.

Still, it's a good lens and I'd recommend this to anyone - makes a good all round zoom.


Mar 13, 2004
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GlenW
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Registered: Sep 19, 2003
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 3
Review Date: Feb 23, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Clarity, IS, Range, Size
Cons:
Weight (not too bad), Filter Size, Battery Consumption (again not too bad)

I find the lens a good compromise and it is normally attached to the camera. It's not as wide as I'd like, or has as much reach as I'd like sometimes, but no single lens can do it all.

It's very versatile and I find the IS to effectively allow good handheld shots at surprisingly low shutter speeds (1/8 sec for example). I can get good shots of stationary objects in very dim room light if I up the ISO to 800-1600.


Feb 23, 2004
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Location: New Zealand
Review Date: Jan 13, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $399.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: IS is definitely the BIG pro in this lens and gives it a very good low light capacity. Sharp images between 35-120mm. Great value for a very reasonable price!
Cons:
Slight vignetting near 28mm and a little unsharp near 135mm!

Yes, this lens is not an L-series lens, and it doesn't cost as much as an L-lens either!! It has slight vignetting and decreased sharpness in the high zoom and wide angle, but what do you expect??
You cannot reasonably compare a 2000$ L-lens with a 400$ lens! This is like complaining that your Audi A6 is not as fast as your neighbours Ferrari!!

Reasonably spoken: this is an excellent walkaround lens!


Jan 13, 2004
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Location: New Zealand
Review Date: Jan 4, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: IS, good zoom range
Cons:
Good but not great quality.

This is a good to very good consumer lens. I am surprised by the number of high ratings for this lens. While it's a fine consumer zoom, it doesn't really match the quality of Canon L zooms. There was a comment that this lens if very good at f11. Well sure - almost anything is good at f11. L zoom lenses typically have great build quality, are usable wide open and have great performance across their entire zoom range. This lens has none of those qualities.

This is NOT a bad lens - I like mine for non-critical shots and as a walking around lens. It has a good range, and although I rarely need the IS for this range, it's nice to have. I've also tried 3 different samples of this with similar results, so I don't think my lens is a bad sample.

I recommend getting one if you need something reasonably priced in this zoom range. Don't get one if you're expecting L quality optics.


Jan 4, 2004
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spartan123
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Registered: Nov 9, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 3683
Review Date: Dec 17, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $350.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: IS feature, the focal range and the quality.
Cons:
none

I have been told I am one of the lucky ones with this lens. It is almost perfect in every way. This is the lens that stays on my camera all the time. The quality / detail of the pictures are just incredible and the build is tight. It is a little heavy but worth it in the long run. It is just a great "general" lens for the money.

Dec 17, 2003
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chrishierons
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Registered: Nov 13, 2003
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 511
Review Date: Nov 22, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: IS; Lightweight; very good all around lens;
Cons:
Zoom action loose => zoom creep;

This lens replaced my 28-90 lens, and is a significent step-up. I bought it for my EOS300. It now lives on my Eos 3. When ever I go on holiday it's my first choice.

Nov 22, 2003
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Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
181 531070 Jun 30, 2014
Recommended By Average Price
88% of reviewers $718.67
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.44
8.14
7.8
ef_28-135_35_1_


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