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I may have gotten a bad Canon lens. Thoughts? EF-S 15-85

post #1 of 53
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Recently bought a new Canon lens from the Canon direct website and I am thinking about sending it back for a replacement. I think it might have something wrong with it. All the photos I have gotten seem a little soft to me.


Lens is the 15-85 EF-S body is t1i

I paid $735 for this lens! It is not a cheap lens as a few have stated in the post


Here are some examples. What do you think? These are not supposed to be well composed shots.... These were easy to quickly snap for testing. These are the full res photos with no editing or processing whatsoever. These are the images right out of the camera.






Edited by killeraxemannic - 11/4/11 at 10:21pm
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post #2 of 53
Were these taken on a tripod? did you use live view 10x magnification to confirm focus? It's possible that your copy could be soft, but it's good to eliminate all other possibilities. I'm still trying to get some data from the images. Top one seems OK.. which focus point did you use on these (or did you let the camera pick?)

Ok, it looks like.. iso 200, 1/320 f/8 on the car pic -- shake probably wasn't an issue. 22mm? Which lens is it?
Edited by MistaBernie - 11/3/11 at 2:26pm
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post #3 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MistaBernie View Post
Were these taken on a tripod? did you use live view 10x magnification to confirm focus? It's possible that your copy could be soft, but it's good to eliminate all other possibilities. I'm still trying to get some data from the images. Top one seems OK.. which focus point did you use on these (or did you let the camera pick?)
I let the camera pick focus for all of them

They are all shot at F8 and iso 100 with around 1/125 shutter speed. They are all taken by hand

I don't think my camera does the live view focus thing. Live view doesn't work very well with my camera.
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post #4 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by MistaBernie View Post
Were these taken on a tripod? did you use live view 10x magnification to confirm focus? It's possible that your copy could be soft, but it's good to eliminate all other possibilities. I'm still trying to get some data from the images. Top one seems OK.. which focus point did you use on these (or did you let the camera pick?)

Ok, it looks like.. iso 200, 1/320 f/8 on the car pic -- shake probably wasn't an issue. 22mm? Which lens is it?
he shot it with a 18-55.

i agree with bernie on those questions to rule out lens malfunction.

also keep in mind this is not a top dollar lens so it is not going to be tack sharp for every single shot. BUT i will say i have seen quite a few samples from this lens that are very impressive but every lens performs different and takes some getting used to in order to understand it and practice shooting with it over time will help you get better results.
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post #5 of 53
Yeah. One problem could be this - if you dont have it default to a particular auto focus spot, then when it beeps and flashes you may not realize that you're focused on what you're actually looking at; usually the camera will select whatever's closest and focus on that (from what I've seen and read at least). Try to change it to the center focus spot, focus on something and check it that way.
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post #6 of 53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Conspiracy View Post
he shot it with a 18-55.

i agree with bernie on those questions to rule out lens malfunction.

also keep in mind this is not a top dollar lens so it is not going to be tack sharp for every single shot. BUT i will say i have seen quite a few samples from this lens that are very impressive but every lens performs different and takes some getting used to in order to understand it and practice shooting with it over time will help you get better results.
No it's not an 18-55. It's a 15-85. Its a $700 lens..... Thats why I am concerned
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post #7 of 53
You can manually focus in live view. Set it on tripod and do live view 10x manual focus and then another shot with autofocus on.

The lens might need some adjusting if they are off by a big margin.
    
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post #8 of 53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aksthem1 View Post
You can manually focus in live view. Set it on tripod and do live view 10x manual focus and then another shot with autofocus on.

The lens might need some adjusting if they are off by a big margin.
How would I adjust the lens if it needs it? Wouldn't it be better to send it back to the canon store since I have only had it for 2 days?
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post #9 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by killeraxemannic View Post
How would I adjust the lens if it needs it? Wouldn't it be better to send it back to the canon store since I have only had it for 2 days?
Your question doesn't make any sense. You need to do some more testing. In terms of adjusting the lens, you can't on the T1i (Microadjust isn't part of any of the Rebel series or the 60D).

Rebels do have Live View. It's in the manual, you'll have to look it up because I dont recall how to do it off the top of my head. If I recall correctly though, there should be two buttons next to the top right of the LCD screen - the bottom one is next to a red dot and a camera icon. This should turn on Live View. When it's on, use the zoom+ button on the very top-right corner of the back of the camera to zoom in (hit it twice till the screen says 10x). At that point, flip the switch on the lens from AF to MF, and adjust the focus to get the image into focus and take a shot. If it's soft at that point, something else is going on.

Otherwise, review what I said in my second post earlier -- read the manual about focus points and learn how to select only the center focus point. Default is all (so all focus points should be on and red) -- as you change them, make sure only the center one turns on (turns red). If, after selecting the center focus point and trying your shots again images are still soft, then yes, you'll want to check into it further.

I'm headed home now (ok, to buy a monopod first and then head home). I'll check back a bit later. If you dont have a tripod, set your camera on a table or something stable, turn on the two second timer, line up your shot, half press to get in focus, then hit the shutter button (taking care not to move the camera at all).
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post #10 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by killeraxemannic View Post
How would I adjust the lens if it needs it? Wouldn't it be better to send it back to the canon store since I have only had it for 2 days?
dont worry about adjusting it yet. and test everything and dont let your camera chose the focus point change it to center focus point so you are telling it what to do. cameras are not very smart and need to be told what todo. if you shoot in auto it will not always give you what you want.

also if you want it adjusted you can send it to canon and they will calibrate it to your camera which is better i think that just exchanging it for another especially if your are examining your pictures really close to see if they are sharp. i suggest not pixel peeping that much since although your lens is $700 dont expect performance that comes from something double that price.

how long have you had your camera. because also that can affect what you see in your pictures. reason i ask is how familiar are you with your camera. because honestly its not about the gear it is more about the photographer and their familiarity with their equipment. i think that you need to retest your camera as well as after that see if the pictures change. because its highly possible that your expectations are too high.
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