Spot the 18-55mm Canon 'kit' lens ?

Discussion in 'Canon' started by dylan, Aug 6, 2005.

  1. dylan

    dylan Guest

    I've taken 3 photos with 3 different Canon Zoom lens (non are L series), all
    set at 24mm f8 on a 350D.
    Full Res jpegs, hope you have broadband.

    Can you identify the 18-55mm 'kit lens' ?

    This is not a scientific test.
    dylan, Aug 6, 2005
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  2. Ok I'll play along.

    I'd say the middle shot. At least that how my shots with the 18-55 look...
    Robert R Kircher, Jr., Aug 6, 2005
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  3. Well, I'll stick my neck out. I have to say that on screen the
    differences did not seem that great in the central area.

    To me, picture 3 appears to be the sharpest, both in centre and at the
    edges. The writing on the TV connector sockets, in particular, is way
    better than on 2 (it is cropped off on 1, but from the cloth it would
    likely be worse).

    Pictures 1 and 2 are harder to call. This may in part be because you
    have (I suspect) set the lens for 1 at a slightly longer focal length,
    and thus have slightly less DoF (it has a little more bird but a lot
    less TV). Thus picture 2 seems to me better at the edge (closer subject)
    - but it seems slightly, very slightly, less sharp than picture 1.

    Thus I would go for 2 as being the poorest lens.

    Whether that is the 18-55, I don't know. While it has been slated by
    many here, plenty of people of good credentials have praised it. For
    example, David Kilpatrick (editor of UK magazine Freelance + Digital,
    and himself an accomplished professional) says in the June/July issue of
    that magazine: "We have a Canon 300D which has a new cheap 18-55mm
    digital lens - great little performer."

    To be honest, even if a lens was a little below the standard I would
    normally choose to use, I would expect it to be hard to tell by f/8. It
    may be more informative if you were to use f/4.5, or whatever is the
    widest all 3 can achieve. Use manual focus, take great care to focus on
    the same point in all 3 - and take more care to get the focal lengths
    exactly equal!

    Nice to see someone actually trying an experiment rather than just
    shooting his mouth off, though - thanks for that.


    PS - I just realised my daughter has one of these controversial lenses -
    came on the 350 I bought her a couple of years ago. I have never thought
    to give it a try myself. Going on holiday tomorrow though, so it will
    have to wait.
    David Littlewood, Aug 6, 2005
  4. dylan

    jean Guest

    #3 looks like the sharpest
    #1 is second sharpest
    #2 is the least sharp

    I know which is which, the EXIF says it all but my answers were not done
    according to what I knew, but according to what my eyes told me.

    I will have to duplicate this test, I have many lenses which can all be set
    at the same focal lenght.

    jean, Aug 6, 2005
  5. You have a lot of dust bunnies showing for F8.
    Dean S. Lautermilch, Aug 6, 2005
  6. dylan

    Frank ess Guest

    I vote middle for the 'kit'; image quality/sharpness at normal viewing
    or Web sizes, probably not much to choose among them, but in this
    presentation my eye likes #3, #1, #2, in that order.
    Frank ess, Aug 6, 2005
  7. dylan

    Brian Baird Guest

    I can spot where you took down some pictures. Nail holes!

    I'm not going to guess on which one is which. 1 and 3 seem good, with 3
    being the best.

    2 doesn't seems to have its focus behind the objects on the desk,
    because the picture frame is in better focus than the foreground
    Brian Baird, Aug 6, 2005
  8. How did you see the EXIF data? I couldn't see it on the page.

    David Littlewood, Aug 6, 2005
  9. dylan

    G.T. Guest

    Years ago? I don't think so.

    G.T., Aug 6, 2005
  10. dylan

    Toa Guest

    How did you see the EXIF data? I couldn't see it on the page.
    Download the image maybe?

    Toa, Aug 6, 2005
  11. dylan

    Pixby Guest

    One of the psychological advantages to viewing this sort of test is
    knowing the photographer is so engrossed in their willingness to
    demonstrate a point, they forget to sweep the path behind them and
    almost always make the first image, the one with conjecture. It helps
    too to have the EXIF data intact!

    All of those shots have substantial chromatic aberration and none were
    shot at the same exposure value. Which means they are not APO lenses and
    like the OP said, not a scientific test. Because all the lenses are
    mediocre quality, it is impossible to visually tell the difference
    although the first image is the one from the kit lens.

    Make = Canon
    Model = Canon EOS 350D DIGITAL
    Orientation = Normal
    XResolution = 72.00
    YResolution = 72.00
    Resolution Unit = Inch
    Date Time = 2005:08:06 14:06:44
    YCb Cr Positioning = Co-sited
    Exif Offset = 196
    Exposure Time = 1/6 sec
    FNumber = F8.0
    Exposure Program = Aperture priority
    ISOSpeed Ratings = 100
    Exif Version = "0221"
    Date Time Original = 2005:08:06 14:06:44
    Date Time Digitized = 2005:08:06 14:06:44
    Components Configuration = YCbCr
    Shutter Speed Value = 0.1667 sec (1/6)
    Aperture Value = F6.0
    Exposure Bias Value = 0/2
    Metering Mode = MultiSegment
    Flash = Off, surpressed
    Focal Length = 27.00 mm
    Maker Note = "."
    User Comment =
    Flash Pix Version = "0100"
    Color Space = sRGB
    Exif Image Width = 3456
    Exif Image Length = 2304
    Interoperability Offset = 9230
    Interoperability Index = R98
    Interoperability Version = "0100"
    Focal Plane XResolution = 3456000/874
    Focal Plane YResolution = 2304000/582
    Focal Plane Resolution Unit = Inch
    Custom Rendered = Normal process
    Exposure Mode = Auto
    White Balance = Auto
    Scene Capture Type = Standard
    Focal Lengthin35mm Film = 43.80

    --- Maker Specific Data ---
    ExposureInfo1 = 92, 2, 100, 3, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 1,
    32767, 3, 2, 0, 3, 65535, 65535, 55, 18, 1, 65535, 65535, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0,
    65535, 65535, 0, 0, 0, 0, 65535, 0, 32767, 0, 32767, 65535, 65535
    Macro mode = Normal
    Self Timer = 2
    Compression Rate = Basic
    Flash Mode = Not fired
    Drive Mode = Single
    Focus Mode = One-Shot
    Image Size = Large
    Easy Shoot = Manual
    Contrast = High
    Saturation = High
    Sharpness = High
    CCD ISO =
    Metering Mode = Evaluative
    AF Point =
    Exposure Mode = Av-priority
    Long focal = 55
    Short focal = 18
    Focal Units = 1
    Flash Details = 0
    Focus Mode = Single
    ExposureInfo2 = 68, 0, 160, 120, 192, 83, 0, 0, 3, 0, 8, 8, 0, 0, 0, 0,
    0, 0, 1, 0, 0, 192, 248, 119, 0, 0, 252, 0, 65535, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0
    White balance = Auto
    Sequence Number = 3
    OpticalZoom Step = 8
    AF point = 0
    Flash bias = 0 EV
    Distance = 1
    ImageType = "Canon EOS 350D DIGITAL"
    FirmwareVersion = "Firmware 1.0.2"
    OwnerName = "unknown"
    CameraSerialNumber = 730524401
    CustomFunctions = 20, 0, 256, 512, 768, 1024, 1280, 1536, 1792, 2048
    Noise Reduction = Off
    Shutter AE Lock Button = AF/AE lock
    Mirror Lockup = Disable
    Exposure Level = 1/2 stop
    AF Assist = On (auto)
    AV Shutter Speed = Automatic
    AEB Sequence = 0

    File: IMG_0095.JPG
    Exposure Time: 1/4 sec
    F-Stop: F8.0
    ISO: 100
    Lens: 24.00 mm
    Date: 2005:08:06 14:07:26

    File: IMG_0096.JPG
    Exposure Time: 3/10 sec
    F-Stop: F8.0
    ISO: 100
    Lens: 24.00 mm
    Date: 2005:08:06 14:08:05
    Pixby, Aug 6, 2005
  12. Sorry, brain out of gear again, meant to type "300D"!

    David Littlewood, Aug 7, 2005
  13. Doh! Now I see the answer, thanks. Still doesn't change anything I said

    David Littlewood, Aug 7, 2005
  14. dylan

    Longfellow Guest

    Looked at EXIF info. Is the lens for #2 also a kit lens? Wonder what
    that says about standard vs wide angle zooms? Also interesting to note
    that the shutter speed was 1/8th for the 18-55 and 1/4th for the other
    two: wonder why. Apertures were 8.0 for all...


    Longfellow, Aug 7, 2005
  15. Nice one Dylan...

    I cropped a small section from each image and spread them three across in
    photoshop and agree with the comments of everyone else as the the sharpness.

    Whilst I know the point of this is a direct comparison, I did what I believe
    is a more real world test on it.

    I printed a full horizontal crop of the same portion of each image and
    printed the three strips onto a A4 sheet of paper and then viewed the image
    at the recommended 2.5 times the diagonal.

    And you know what? At that distance, the normal viewing distance, to me it's
    imperceptable. A very high quality image by all accounts, created on a very
    good consumer camera with what I regard high quality lenses. (and I'm
    currently using a Nikon D70)

    At the end of the day, I guess it depends on where your photographs end up.

    It's indicative of the kind of quality we expect and demand of a consumer
    camera/lens these days. We seemed obsessed in splitting finer and finer
    hairs and losing sight of the fact that although one lens will always be
    sharper than another at certain focal lengths, pretty much all lenses
    capture images with a sufficiently good sharpness for the end purpose. And
    for most consumers, that's the ink jet printer or at best a consumer lab.

    If you're needs are more critical, if that extra degree of sharpness is
    critical to you earning your money, then it's likely you'll use a tool fit
    for purpose. Maybe that means using a medium/large format camera or a more
    expensive lens range.

    I urge everyone to print the image as I have, and at the appropriate
    distance judge for yourself if you would consider any of those photographs
    as 'unacceptably soft'
    Steve Franklin, Aug 7, 2005
  16. dylan

    RichA Guest

    Same thing. Less CA in number 3 also.
    RichA, Aug 7, 2005
  17. dylan

    dylan Guest

    Obviously those of you whoread the EXIF know the answer but is was :

    1. 18-55 'kit' lens
    2. 24-85 3.5-4.5
    3. 20-35 3.5-4.5
    dylan, Aug 7, 2005
  18. dylan

    dylan Guest

    Uploaded 2 photos taken at f4.5 on the 20-35 and the 18-55 both at 20mm.

    dylan, Aug 7, 2005
  19. dylan

    jean Guest

    Still interesting that the more expensive (than the kit lens) 24-85 came

    jean, Aug 7, 2005
  20. dylan

    dylan Guest

    It seems to have a problem with focus, it's the same on my 10D, also it is
    at it's extreme at 24mm. I'll try it at various focal lengths, I'm sure it's
    a lot better at longer lengths.
    dylan, Aug 7, 2005
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