Canon Zoom Telephoto EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 lens

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The Canon 18-55mm IS USM kit lens that came with my Canon 550D is OK and only added about $100 to the price.  It certainly has a great range as a carry around and for snap shots but it is not my choice for photography you can brag with. So I wanted something better with a similar but longer zoom range and still within my budget

The investment in glass as much more long lasting than the camera body that can get overtaken by new technology in 12 to 18 months, so lens purchases warrant more research.  After reading many reviews I narrowed my choice to the Canon EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Standard Zoom Lens and the  Canon EF 28-135mm IS USM lens.  

They convert to 30-300mm and 45-200mm equivalents respectively with the crop factor of the APS-C sensors. In my view this makes neither of them a wide angle lens or a long range Telephoto.  They are both mid-range, so the EF-S 18-200mm's bigger range was not an important factor... you will need something else both for wide angle and for long range.

The factors that swung me to the Canon Zoom Telephoto EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 lens are the USM and the EF designation.  The USM makes for faster and more accurate autofocusing.  My preference for EF lenses over EF-S lenses lies in my own reasoning that as technology improves I will one day wrap my hands around my own full frame Canon, either because technology will make new ones affordable or will replace the current models that will then come onto the used market.  EF-S lenses do not fit on the full frame bodies.

In recieving the lens through the mail I had a couple of surprises....  

The lens is compact but noticeably heavier than I expected though not a brick.  The ring size of 72mm is unusually large.  The lens has a handy macro feature which I have used for some great closeup shots.  The USM is fast, quiet and spot on.  The manual focus works even while in auto mode. The front stays stable and does not irritatingly turn when you zoom. 

Several reviews that I read mentioned that the front of the lens felt loose in the barrel and some users complained of lens creep when shooting vertically.  I don't know whether Canon has improved the manufacturing process but neither of these are problems in the lens I received.  The barrel fits as snug as a bug and the lens has never crept out of my frame choice.  

After a couple of months I am still delighted with my choice.  I can find no flaws in picture quality.  I have taken some really great shots with this lens that are clearly superior to the 18-55 kit option.  The bad shots can be blamed mostly on the photographer (me).

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