CharlesH's reviews

  • Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM

    7 out of 10 points and recommended
    Image stabilization, wide range of focal lengths (5x), decent sharpness, particularly for a lightweight mid-priced zoom lens.
    Heavy barrel distortion at wide-angle.

    This is a very decent middle-of-the-road lens. It is nice to have image stabilization in this focal range. The 5x focal length range permits you to use this as your only lens and still have flexible framing options.

    The only obvious limitations in use are the small aperture, particularly at longer focal lengths (which sometimes forces excessive exposure times when using limited, natural lighting) and the large amount of barrel distortion at short focal lengths.

    If you will be doing photos in low-light with this lens, you will want a good flash unit (like the Canon Speedlites) unless you can shoot long exposures on a tripod.

    If you shoot wide-angle photos of straight lines (e.g. most house or office interiors), you may want to invest in software to correct the barrel distortion, such as DxO Optics Pro.

    As one might expect from the test results here on SLRGear, softness has never been an issue with this lens. In my uses, Chromatic aberration and Vignetting have also not been a problem.

    reviewed January 15th, 2007