**** 28-135IS Revisited ****

Started Feb 25, 2003 | Discussions thread
Forrest Forum Pro • Posts: 14,666
Finicky...

We were just talking about this the other day... Optical quality -wise, I think the 100/2.8 Macro is my best lens. Probably not quite as sharp as the 50/1.4, but it's colors are much closer to the L than to the 50, it's critically sharp at all apertures, this and that. The 16-35L is easily capable of creating wonderful or aweful photographs, depending on you. I'm finding mine really needs that tripod, f/11, being level, and all that. If I do what I know I have to, I'm incredibly happy with the results I get. If I try to cut any corners, I'm usually not happy. I have to work for the quality I want... It's my favorite lens, but it's also my most finicky.

The camera being level is so much more important, just because you're so much closer. Depth of field always shocks me with this lens, because I expect it to run deep, but when you get right up close to your subject, it's not . You really do have to stop down. In fact, I have a ( bad ) landscape shot of this thistle standing in front of the Teton range, where even at f/11 I could only have one or the other subject sharp. I'm confident that my lens itself is sharp enough at f/4, but it's pretty often there isn't enough DOF here.

Anyway, the short end of it is that I pretty much agree with everything you say below...

It's a wierd lens which you have to learn, it's definately NOT
point and shoot like the 28-70 and 80-200Ls which are virtually
faultless no matter what aperture or focal length you use .. I
thought my 16-35 was soft on the left side, but other shots are
soft on the right depending on the angle of view and scenery (even
down to f5.6 - I don't remember a time when this lens got down to
F8 or lower), so even at relatively slow apertures you have to be
real careful about DOF (I figured this is why you shoot your
'scapes at F11).. To ME it's the best of a very bad bunch (UWA
Zooms) rather than a holy grail like the 28-70 or 80-200 ..

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