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Canon EF 28-105 F/3.5-4.5 II USM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
122 310370 Sep 26, 2012
Recommended By Average Price
89% of reviewers $216.72
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.31
9.02
8.4
ef_28-105_35

Specifications:
Canon's mid-range 28-105 f/3.5-4.5 features ultrasonic ring focus motor, inner focus, rotating zoom (non-turning front element), and full time manual focus. 15 elements in 12 groups. 2.8 X 3 inches (72 X 75 mm), 375 grams. 58 mm filter.


 


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Gunzorro
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Registered: Aug 27, 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 6381
Review Date: Sep 26, 2012 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $150.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Very appealing focal range.
Cons:
Disappointing optical performance.

I had hoped this would be a good light weight knock-around lens, but optical performance wasn't adequate for me.

The final straw was a helicopter assignment near the beach on a very hazy, but sunny day with distant views. I shot this lens side by side against the 24-70L, and this was terrible away from center for sharpness at f/5.6-8, and it had color shift as well. Granted, these are extreme price and quality lenses, but the 28-105 can't be recommended for anything other than snapshots.


Sep 26, 2012
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anthonygh
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Registered: Jan 8, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1833
Review Date: Feb 28, 2012 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: Price and IQ
Cons:
Build quality a bit lacking...possibly the least substantial of my lenses.

This is my second review.....the reason will be obvious from the text below.


I actually bought this lens some years back and used it for B+W film and on my 10D. IQ was quite nice but nothing to get excited about, and eventually it ended up in the bottom of a case..unloved....replaced by more expensive purchases!!

I found it a week ago and decided to give it an outing on my 40D...what a difference!! I tend to shoot at f5.6 and use ACR to process files. I don't know if it is the 40D or CS5 but the IQ and sharpness were up there with the 50mm f1.4 I tend to use. I do model shoots and used this lens yesterday in the studio.....I thought the model had near flawless skin.....not according to this lens!!

I am used to L lenses and this is flimsy by comparison.....not so nice to manipulate. But still USM with full MF and lightning fast to focus....so no real complaints.

Definitely a lens that improved with age (or helped by other modern technology). I'm looking for my old USM 35-135 and 25-85 lenses now......


Feb 28, 2012
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bartoszwozniak
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Registered: May 3, 2010
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 1
Review Date: May 7, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very cheap Well, solid built Fast and very quite autofocus Decent Sharpness and good overall quality
Cons:
The MF ring is a tiny bit stiff The lens is not 100% sharp wide open (not really a problem for the price though) The aperture is not as wide as it could be and its not constant

I have just received the EF 28-105mm f/3.5 - f/4.5 II USM. I bought it very cheaply off eBay a couple of days ago. I obviously haven't really had much time to test it properly yet, but I will do and then possibly add to this and maybe add some sample images too.

My first impressions of the lens were that it is very well built, yet quite small and compact. This was ideal for me, since I was looking for a walk-around lens which would stay on my 40D for most of the time. I had a go with the zooming and the manual focusing (yes, it does have full manual override) and it felt great. The Ultrasonic motor was lighting fast and very quiet. The focus ring does not even move when focussing, but I noticed that it is quite hard to turn when in MF. It is very weighted and quite stiff, which makes it a little bit annoying, but it's nothing major and I am sure that it will come looser with time. The lens seemed quite bright and covers a good range, even on a crop body. From the photos that I took, it seems relatively sharp at both the wide and telephoto end and not too bad wide open.

No problems so far!

Quite frankly - very happy with my purchase and I would recommend this lens for anyone!


May 7, 2010
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jay tieger
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Registered: Oct 10, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 1739
Review Date: Jan 16, 2010 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: light weight/compact, wider widest aperture for brighter indoor view, USM focusing, good FL range, little distortion, edge-to-center balanced IQ, good contrast/colors, 58mm filter, very decent F4.5 lens
Cons:
don't look a gift horse in the mouth

First off: I got it off Craigslist with busted filter-caused hairline scratch on front element, filter ring that won't come off, moderate amount of dust inside, and no rear cap...hence the cheap price.

I once had the 24-85 on a 10D...loved it but it had distortion issues, and wasn't wide enough, so replaced it with the 18-55 IS....

But the kit isn't really bright enough viewing in indoor use...it's okay but not once I put the MF screen in the 40D...that is not recommended with a widest aperture >2.8, so you can imagine looking through the EF-S screen @ 5.6!

This lens overcomes that objection/conflict/issue...
The barrel/pincussion distortion of the 24-85 is gone with this lens.

My use for this is group candids at events (not professionally-paid gigs, just parties and such)...barrel distortion at wider FLs distorts those people at edges, so this lens's lack of such distortion is a real plus....so is USM for such uses.
The lack of distortion means that for scenics, the soft edges won't be distorted, i.e. curved towards the center...soft edges can be dealt with, but distorted swirling grass and trees? No....

The evenly distributed IQ means that once stopped down the improved IQ is noticable from edge to edge...another plus when shooting groups...easier to improve in PP when the end head is close to sharpness as the guy in the center....
I said it's a very decent 4.5 lens because I generally wouldn't advise using the widest aperture on any consumer zoom lens...shooting wide open is for "L" quality glass.

...so, if one's minimally acceptable IQ standard is one F-stop down from wide open, then thinking of this lens as widest at 4.5 means one should not use it wider than 7.1 (unless one WANTED a soft image, such as portrait)....

At F7.1 the edges become virtually as sharp as the center, and at F8-11 both center and edge imporve to very good.
The 58mm filter ring means shared PL filter with the 18-55 kit...(the wider, 62mm filter of the 24-85 is another inconvenience and expense)

So, in the end I think that the best way to think of this lens is a very good 28-105/F4.5 that is very useable at F7.1, and very acceptable at F8-11, which ought to be the goal of any consumer/hobbiest-priced lens...A good general purpose "walkabout" lens, especially useful for parties and events when using a flash @ F7.1-F8

Full Frame images followed by 100% crops...
105/F7.1 USM:200/.2/0
http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/8333/7071img3226ffu22.jpg

http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/4121/7071img3226lc.jpg

http://img191.imageshack.us/img191/918/7071img3226cc.jpg

http://img197.imageshack.us/img197/1718/7071img3226rc.jpg

28mm/F7.1 USM: 200/.2/0
http://img23.imageshack.us/img23/8951/2871img3223ffu22.jpg

http://img130.imageshack.us/img130/4018/2871img3223lcu22.jpg

http://img198.imageshack.us/img198/6743/2871img3223ccu22.jpg

http://img197.imageshack.us/img197/2730/2871img3223rcu22d.jpg


Jan 16, 2010
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vince
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Registered: Mar 18, 2002
Location: China
Posts: 306
Review Date: Oct 23, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $200.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Very fast focusing (USM motor), decent build quality, compact and light.
Cons:
Average optical quality.

This was the first zoom lens I got with the EOS-50 kit. It is quite well built and focuses very fast, but that's about as much as it has going for it, since the optical quality is just about average. Today even the cheap "dog-toy" 18-55 IS kit zoom of the 450/500D can destroy this lens in terms of optical quality.

Oct 23, 2009
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UltraVal
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Registered: Nov 8, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 6
Review Date: Oct 2, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $140.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Quiet focusing USM, good build, colors, range
Cons:
Images seem soft, even stopped down

Maybe it's just my copy, I'm not sure, but I find this lens nothing to write home about. Most all pics I've taken with it seem so-so. I plan to continue to use it on occasion to hopefully determine whether it's a keeper or if I'll sell it.

Oct 2, 2009
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photoelle
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Registered: May 1, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 267
Review Date: Sep 20, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: Good aperture range, 3.5-4.5 offers greater flexibility, price.
Cons:
Soft indoors, especially at the wide end, zoom allows dust inside the glass, poor contrast.

I have 2 copies, one made in Japan, one made in Taiwan. The Japanese copy is the heavier of the two. The Taiwanese copy has dust inside the front element lens.

I needed this lens mostly for indoor work, with flash, and thought the aperture range was good for that. However, the pix were inconsistent and lacked contrast, especially at the wide open, wide end range.

Its much better outdoors mostly at f8-16, and is a great general purpose lens, but it can never begin to compare to a 2.8 lens.


Sep 20, 2009
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dalephill2
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Registered: Aug 26, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 739
Review Date: Aug 13, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $150.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Great walk around, sharp, super build
Cons:
no hood

This is my second 28-105, I sold my other one due to finiancial reasons and missed it ever since. It was superb then as it is now. Its just that good, its every bit as good as some of my other lenses. 55-250, better than the 18-55, and i'd swear its just as good as my 70-200f4, so yeah its a keeper this one, I love it.. not gonna let it go again.

Aug 13, 2009
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tonyat
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Registered: Jun 23, 2008
Location: N/A
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 30, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $219.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Great range for outdoor events (45-168 ff equiv). Good color reproduction and pretty sharp in its sweet spot (f7-f16). Ring USM is fast and quiet.
Cons:
Not an indoor lens. It is usable wide open, but sharpness and contrast do suffer.

Some say it is an awkward focal length on 1.6 bodies. I find it quite handy at outdoor events and even for landscapes. The lens really shines outdoors when you can stop it down just a little.

The handling is pretty good and the ring usm is why I can't bring myself to get something else. For the price, there isn't anything else that is as quick.

It can be used indoors, especially if you can hit the subject with flash.

I have used it indoors without flash at my daughter's events and have usable pictures, but this is not where it is at its best. I have found f2.8 and better primes do this job nicer for me.



Jun 30, 2009
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digifilm
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Registered: Jun 21, 2009
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 22, 2009 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

 
Pros: asdfasdf
Cons:
asdfasdf

asdfasdf

Jun 22, 2009
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digifilm
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Registered: Jun 21, 2009
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 21, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Pretty stupendous at F8, Acceptable wide open for a $250 lens. I put some post up to show off a few pictures.
Cons:
Soft wide open or more accurately, not as sharp as stopped down.
Jun 21, 2009
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Rjmccutchan
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Registered: Feb 12, 2006
Location: N/A
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 18, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp images, nice zoom range, price
Cons:
none for the price

I bought this lens at the reccomendations of the reviews on this site, so I thought it was time to post mine.

I am very impressed with this lens. I paid $160USD with a canon A2 and grip attached to it. For the price, this lens produces excellent results. Obviously it is not capable of what the 2.8 lenses can do, but used in the range it is designed for, I could not ask for anything better. I photograph weddings and this is an excellent zoom range for weddings. I think if I had anything wider that 28mm, it would distort too much for group shots, and anything longer than 105mm would be too long to hand hold in available light. When shot wide open, the images tend to be a little soft, but useable. I mostly photograph weddings and personal stuff at 5.6 and up. I have a 50mm 1.8 if I needed. I was really impressed after the first wedding with it. I had a Konica/Minolta before Canon and I never had pictures as clear and sharp as this combination (10D and 28-105).

This lens does not like to be pushed to the extremes, but if you operate somewhere between, you should be pleased with the image quality.


Jun 18, 2009
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spentomuch
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Registered: Oct 3, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 525
Review Date: Jun 8, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $180.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price
Cons:
None

When I moved to nikon, I kept 1 canon dslr and 1 lens to play around with, and this is it. Mine is the japanese version.

Jun 8, 2009
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PointNshootr
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Registered: Oct 13, 2008
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Apr 7, 2009 Recommend? no | Price paid: $220.00 | Rating: 5 

 
Pros: Price
Cons:
Blurry Photos

i am very disappointed with the sharpness of this lens. Perhaps i have a bad copy???

what i have found is that i can only really achieve adequate sharpness at around F9. wide open is blurry and shockingly the sample shot at F22 was blurry as well.


here are some sample shots, taken with a tripod.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/28816055@N05/3422557044/" title="Canon 28-105 II F22 by s1ngletrack, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3020/3422557044_ec0af29480.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="Canon 28-105 II F22" /></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/28816055@N05/3421746999/" title="Canon 28-105 II F9 by s1ngletrack, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3589/3421746999_252feedc77.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="Canon 28-105 II F9" /></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/28816055@N05/3422555232/" title="Canon 28-105 II F3.5 by s1ngletrack, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3656/3422555232_2fb3e38bf5.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="Canon 28-105 II F3.5" /></a>


Apr 7, 2009
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rmeyer
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Registered: Feb 11, 2009
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Feb 11, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $100.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Price, sturdy build, sharpness
Cons:
None so far

I gave it a 10 because of price-to-performance ratio. Obviously this isn't in the same league as an L lens. But for a consumer-level lens it produces great shots.

I did a comparison between this lens and the absolutely fantastic 50mm f/1.8 -- same shot, both at 50mm, same aperture and shutter speed. At enough zoom to read the tiny letters below my TV's volume buttons, this zoom lens gave the prime lens a real run for its money in terms of sharpness. The 2 images are virtually identical.

It's slightly softer wide open at 28mm, but still very usable. Leagues above the 18-55mm kit lens, to say the least. This is now my primary walk-around lens and I don't think that will change until I get some L-series glass.


Feb 11, 2009
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Michael Sanche
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Registered: Nov 24, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 14
Review Date: Dec 28, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $228.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: USM focus is accurate and fast in good lighting. Passes focus test chart testing at all focal lenghs wide open. Independent manual focus ring is a good add.
Cons:
Extremely soft at f3.5 and 28mm. Borders on unusable. For the most part, the lens is really only sharp at f8.

I bought this lens with my Canon EOS 350D in Sept. 2007 and have used it as the main lens on the camera since then.

In testing utilized the well known focus test chart with this lens and the EOS 350D, and, although there is noise in the focus outcomes, the focus point is always within the depth of field for this lens with any aperature choice. Something that is not always, or even often, true with the kit lenses.

At 105mm wide open portraits, outdoor and in good lighting, are OK with a good blurred background.

At 28mm the lens is soft at all aperatures and, honestly, not really usable at f3.5 unless one is willing to accept images that look post processed with a softening filter.

The range on the lens, 28-105, is not wide enough really for the crop sensor.

I would not recommend this lens for the crop sensor cameras for Canon. I am trying to move to another lens but this is a challenge as I read about some people obtaining 5 copies of a lens and finally getting a good one.



Dec 28, 2008
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Canon EF 28-105 F/3.5-4.5 II USM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
122 310370 Sep 26, 2012
Recommended By Average Price
89% of reviewers $216.72
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.31
9.02
8.4
ef_28-105_35


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