Most helpful critical review
53 of 55 people found the following review helpful
budge lens for someone looking for wide zoom range (e.g. for holidays)
on 24 May 2009
I got this lens to replace the 18-55mm kit lens that came with my Canon 450D. I wanted something with more zoom. Basically a general lens I can just leave at my camera when I'm just out and shooting. I figured with this I don't have to change lenses all the time (which was true).
Now the lens itself is sturdy. It feels like it could take some beating and survive it (which it has). Of course this kind of sturdiness and zoom comes with a cost in portability. It is quite heavy and big. When I attach it to my 450D, the camera doubles in weight and size.
Optics wise I'm still a bit unsure about the lens. Sometimes I get the feeling that the images aren't as sharp as they should be. And I'm getting more overexposed shots than with my other lenses, but that's easy to fix afterwards when you shoot RAW. The optical stabilizer on the lens seems actually very good compared to the 18-55 kit lens. I noticed I could start to use slightly longer exposure times and still get a sharp image. The optics on the lens are its biggest problem. And personally I don't like the bokeh (blurred background) it creates, though with f/3.5 you don't really blur backgrounds that much.
I wouldn't recommend this lens to everybody outright. Really think what you want to use your lens for. Would something with less zoom be enough (you could get a lighter lens and better optics), maybe something along 18-70mm. And then perhaps a separate zoom lens, say 70-300mm if you need it.
I still am not 100% comfortable with this lens, and thinking of buying maybe something shorter, with a little bigger price tag. After using this lens for some 6 months now I do understand finally that you can't get a great 18-200mm lens for meager £300. Good lenses cost money. And with long zoom range you always lose on the quality of optics.
For the price, it is a decent lens (value for money), but don't expect it to be great. For general use, like holiday photos it is actually pretty good because of the zoom range and price tag.