Fujinon 18-135/3.5-5.6 looks disappointing

Started Jul 11, 2014 | Discussions thread
Jerry-astro
MOD Jerry-astro Veteran Member • Posts: 8,697
Re: Fujinon 18-135/3.5-5.6 looks disappointing

bowportes wrote:

Jerry-astro wrote:

bowportes wrote:

Jerry-astro wrote:

mynameiszen wrote:

I have both 55-200mm and 18-135mm. I also have a 35mm and 18mm prime. And if I could only choose one lens to travel with, it would be the 18-135mm.

Strength

- Trust me when I say the 18-135mm's 5 stop image stabilization is mind blowing. Even someone with shaky hands like me could take a 2" handheld shot without blur! Yes it isn't the fastest lens, but who needs speed with a 5 stop IS?

- It's weather proof. No dust no water problems.

- A perfect all rounder zoom lens

- It's much lighter than 55-200mm

Weakness

IQ isn't as great as the 55-200mm, but very decent.

Why would you compare the 18-135 with the 55-200? They are two completely different beasts intended for different subject matter and applications. A more valid comparison would be with the 18-55, which is much lighter and somewhat faster, but lacks the FL range. I prefer the 18-55 myself, since the longer FL range isn't all that useful to me for most of what I photograph when traveling. I also don't like the way the camera and lens balance with the larger 18-135 (when toting the camera on walks, excursions, etc.) but all that is a very individual thing.

I'm sure all your observations are valid, but I don't quite get the rationale behind your comparison with the 55-200. Both lenses have their place but for very different uses IMHO.

Easy answer. For many of us, the 55-200 was the only way available to get something longer than 55mm. Now we can achieve the same objective with the 18-135. So for anyone who wants their telephoto range to extend beyond 55mm but doesn't require the 135-200mm range, the 18-135 is a logical alternative. I sold my 55-200 after buying the 18-135 because I no longer needed the 55-200 to achieve my telephoto purposes.

Thanks... makes sense. In my case, however, the price you pay for toting the additional weight/bulk around plus the loss in speed is more of a deal breaker. Admittedly, that is a VERY personal thing and highly dependent on where your "sweet spot" focal lengths are for a walkaround lens (mine tend more towards the short end).

It's nice to have both alternatives available, and appreciate your explanation.

You do lose speed, for sure, but if you're someone who has carried the 55-200 in addition to the 18-55, and you switch to carrying just the 18-135, you're actually carrying around less weight/bulk, not more.

Like you, I prefer the short end, so I also picked up the 16-55, which offers that wonderful 24mm (equivalent) field of view. Now I ask myself whether the setting will require a longer tele. If so, I carry the 18-135 as an all-purpose lens. If not, I carry the 16-55 and leave the 18-135 behind.

So, coming from the DSLR world, weight and bulk was one of the primary considerations that drove the change.  There are two factors I considered: the weight of the camera+walkaround lens (which mostly hangs around my neck when walking or touring), and the weight/size of the bag which contains the rest of my kit (in my case 55-200 and 12mm Zeiss Touit).  So, both the 16-55 and 18-135 would be overly bulky for my taste in a walkaround kit.  Additionally, for me, the lack of OIS would be a big issue for the 16-55, not to mention even more weight to deal with.  For really short work, the 12mm Zeiss is just awesome as certainly would be the Fuji 14 without a doubt.

The 16-55 would be close to the 17-55 f/2.8 I was using with my Canon 7D... a terrific combo.  However, both camera and lens were a real pain to tote around, and to be honest, the 18-55 gets me so close in terms of IQ (actually a fair amount better than the Canon kit) and speed that I couldn't justify moving to that lens.  I can certainly see how others, such as yourself, would prefer that combo, and it really comes down to priorities and individual needs as a photographer.

Interesting to compare notes and I appreciate your thoughts and how you reached your decision on your kit.

 Jerry-astro's gear list:Jerry-astro's gear list
Fujifilm X-T2 Fujifilm XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS Carl Zeiss Touit 2.8/12 Fujifilm XF 56mm F1.2 R Fujifilm XF 100-400mm F4.5-5.6 OIS WR +1 more
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