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REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
CanonEF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens
 
4.3

(based on 225 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (124)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (64)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (18)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (14)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (5)

83%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fast / accurate auto-focus (85)
  • Easily interchangeable (74)
  • Lightweight (66)
  • Consistent output (63)
  • Durable (62)

Cons

  • Poor in low light (22)
  • Heavy (17)
  • Lens creep (13)
  • Weak casing (8)
  • Blurry focus (6)

Best Uses

  • Landscape/scenery (73)
  • General purpose (38)
  • Weddings (38)
  • Wildlife photos (25)
  • Low light (24)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Photo enthusiast (50), Enthusiast (38), Semi-pro photographer (24), Casual photographer (15), Pro photographer (11)
    • Primary use:
    • Personal (15), Business (3)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (69), Yes (5)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Nothing less than Amazing!

This lens which I just purchased for the 2nd time, since I wore out the 1st one I owned , is nothing less than amazing and spectacular. Presently is much cheaper than what I...Read complete review

This lens which I just purchased for the 2nd time, since I wore out the 1st one I owned , is nothing less than amazing and spectacular. Presently is much cheaper than what I paid for it a few years ago. It is very versatile, light , agile and reliable. The focus is fast and the results are pristine. I dare to say it does the job as good as an L-lens. Lets say an L-lens is a first class ticket and this lens is a coach ticket. It's not the way you fly that matters it's the fun you have when you reach your destination! This baby delivers!!!

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Nice compact lens, could be better

I've using this lens of about a month. This are my impressions:
1) Build quality is very nice, with metal construcion, nice weight and tight feeling. A lot better than the...Read complete review

I've using this lens of about a month. This are my impressions:
1) Build quality is very nice, with metal construcion, nice weight and tight feeling. A lot better than the flimsy kit lens that came with my 30D.
2) Optical quality is so,so, the lens las heavy fringing issues while at full aperture, you have to stop it down to at least f8 to get rid of it. It also has some heavy barrel distortion at full wide angle, which makes it a no-no for architectural work. Incoming light affects it badly, so be sure to hace the optional lens hood. Lens sharpness is OK, but not up to par with canon's L lenses.

3) It is a nice walk around lens, I find the zoom range to be very adequate for street photo and fot portrait work. I think that the lens is OK for the price, but I'd happily forfeit the Image Stabilizer for somewhat better optics if I had the choice.

Reviewed by 225 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Good Value, Decent lens

By Greg

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Site Member

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I have the original version of this lens, made in Japan. This version is made in Taiwan and sells for about 1/2 of what I paid for the original. Actually, not much more expensive than buying the kit lens. While I have not tested this version vs the original, it seems to be better at the wide end, which was the weaker range for this lens. Focus is fast and quiet, but I have experienced backfocusing at wide angle, but easily fixed with MFA. When compared over the FL range and using RAW and lens profile corrections, it seems to be very similar to my 15-85mm. Not perfect, not L, but I think a good choice for a budget upgrade to the kit lens or more affordable option to the 15-85mm. Also, no evidence of decentering or tilted optics causing one side to be softer than the other. Made some very nice 13 x19 in prints using the mid range and tele end of the FL.

(0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Bought for a friend.

By Ken

from Claverack, Ny

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

This lens will be used on a Canon Rebel body. It was a upgrade to an old kit lens that was not working well.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great step-up lens, wonderful outdoors.

By Rich

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

This is an awesome lens, and has become my go-to/day-to-day lens. It has a good macro feature around 14 inches, and the focusing is blindingly fast. This is a great step up from a 'kit lens'. I've been doing nighttime lightning and light-painting, as well as street photography, and this lens works well. I haven't tested it out on my macro tubes yet, but I'll bet it's pretty solid there as well. I did the poor-man's chromatic aberration and vertical separation tests, and this is by far the best lens I've had for 35mm.

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Not perfect, but a great value for the price

By Martin

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I was considering giving the lens four stars, because it has its obvious shortcomings. But then, every lens has its drawbacks, even if just the weight or the price. So yes, the lens is perfect for what you pay for, if you are looking for an EF-S walkabout lens.

Let me start with the negative aspects, just to mix things up:
- The lens feels relatively heavy, especially compared to the 18-55mm kit lens.
- The barrel distortion is very noticeable, but it can be relatively easily corrected.
- Chromatic aberration is noticeable, and just a little harder to correct w/o trade-offs in image quality. However, while dominant in high-contrast areas around the edges of the image, it didn't impact actual image quality not as much as I feared.

On the plus side:
- 17mm to 85mm makes the lens far more usable in everyday scenarios.
- The lens is very quiet.
- The lens will accept an actual lens hood.
- The focus ring is in a spot close to the camera that makes it very usable, quite in contrast to the kit lens
- Image stabilization works better than I had expected.
- Same frontal thread diameter (67mm) as my EF-S 10-18mm, so my filters carry over.

So what does that mean to me? I had bought a refurbished T5 and a used EF-S 17-85mm for my travel kit, to replace my severely banged-up but still functional T3.

I found that the silent lens with a manual focus makes it substantially easier for me to take candid shots of people. The focal range makes it rather versatile in a number of situations, even though I wish for a longer zoom at times.

But the key point is how much use you are likely to get out of this lens, and I would say that it will get used a lot, for a relatively low price. I have read reviews complaining that I cannot hold up to L-Series lenses, and while that is true, it is almost impossible with the EF-S 17-85mm to argue over whether you got your money's worth.

(0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Very Good crop sensor lens

By Robert

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I bought this lens to replace one that had a communication error. I test a lens for its utility other than the normal 17mm to 85mm focal range. First, I added my Canon 250D 4x to the lens front for a near Macro test with ok result but soft on the periphery. Next I used a 21mm extension tube between the lens & camera body w/o the 250D. This was the magic formula for approx'ly 0.70 mag with the lens set at 85mm, manual focus near infinity. I use "positional focus" meaning I move the camera/lens to achieve focus on an object. The image quality approaches that of an EF or EF/L lens. I normally use extension tubes with a Canon EF 70-200 f4/L USM w/hot shoe manual flash for my near macro captures, but this is a hefty package. For non critical near macro I now have an alternative lighter weight setup.

 
5.0

Walk around all in one

By Don.S

from Evansvillle IN

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I use this lens as my "go-to" when I'm out scouting an area. Great wide angle on my T5i and just enough zoom that it's very flexible.

 
5.0

I´ve liked it a lot

By Sebastian

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

Nice lens, a little heavy, but perfect as a multipurpose one.

 
5.0

Great universal lens for the money! Overall excellent

By Paul

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

Great universal lens for my videos!

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Awesome Lens

By Hellie

from Effingham IL

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

We bought this lens to take pictures of our daughter playing basketball. A gym is one of the hardest place to take good pictures, but this lens make it fool proof.

 
5.0

I would recommend it for every day use.

By Ronnie

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

Very useful lens

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

disappointing

By Robert

from Undisclosed

Site Member

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I bought this lens years ago as an upgrade on my first digital SLR. t certainly felt more solid in the hand, and the autofocus was much quicker, but the chromatic fringing at anything less than around F8 is just horrible! Yes, it was delightfully sharp when stopped down, bit I din't see how Canon can justify selling it as a mid-range upgrade. It was literally worse than any brand name lens - including kit lenses -  I've used. After fighting it a few years, I gave it away.

(2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Great but heavy

By Rory

from undisclosed

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

This lens is wonderful but it is quite a bit heavier than the standard lenses that came with the camera.

(0 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great service!

By Mike R

from Undisclosed

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

Shipped fast. Great product.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great Lens, Love the IS

By M. Nicholson

from Dallas

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

While not in the same league as "L" lenses, but it seems to be well made and good quality. The IS is great when shooting indoors where flash photography is not allowed.

(4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Solid lens for people photos, not particularly long-lasting

By Fred in Texas

from Texas

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

This is my fourth Canon 17-85. The majority of my work photography is of people at social events -- weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, galas, etc. -- and I shoot between 50K and 100K frames a year. It's an outstanding lens for photos of individuals or groups of photos and works well with a variety of types of lighting. But . . . I've had to have the shutter cable, focusing motor and/or diaphragm unit repaired or replaced on all three of my previous units and it's at least $150 a pop each time. It's a little frustrating for a relatively expensive lens.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I love this lens

By crookedtreephoto

from new jersey

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I know the this lens is the stepchild of the "other" 17-85mm Canon lens. But I have to say it exceeded my expectations. I shot an entire indoor wedding using this lens 70% of the time. And get this, with limited if any flash needed.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

great walk around lens

By darci

from fort wayne, IN

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

very good overall performance...sharp...fast auto focus...good focal distance range.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

I liked it until

By Islandhopper3

from Key Largo, FL

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I bought the EF-S 18-135. The slightly longer range of the 17-85 over my 18-55 didn't provide the reach advantages for which I had purchased the lens. The image quality of the lens was acceptable, but not overwhelmingly so. IS worked well, and I found no vignetting, and only a little CA. The lens is large, and weighs only a little less than the 18-135 that provides considerably more reach. The 18-135 came as a kit lens on another body, so the difference in cost wasn't an issue. However, I haven't used anything else since, and the 17-85 was returned.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Perfect all round lens for travel and family outings.

By Grandpa R

from Sonora, CA

Verified Buyer

Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

I do a lot of landscape work and the lens range is excellent. Slightly bulkier and heavier than I'd hoped for. I used a 18-55 prior(until I dropped it),however, this is much more versatile.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I would suggest to anyone to buy this lens .

By Wanna Be Photographer

from Oregon

About Me Casual Photographer

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Consistent Output
  • Durable
  • Easily Interchangeable
  • Fast / accurate auto-focus
  • Lightweight
  • Nice Bokeh
  • Rugged
  • Strong Construction

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Landscape/Scenery
    • Macro Photography
    • Sports/Action
    • Video
    • Wildlife Photos

    Comments about Canon EF-S 17-85mm f/4-5.6 IS USM Lens:

    This lens is my favorite lens so far and if i only have room for one lens this is the one I always reach for on our day trips or just out for a walk in the neighborborhood. Another reason is why I would tell someone to buy it is because of the cost of it I thought it was a good purchase for $299 and I love how the wide angle will extend out for landscaping photos.
    I would consider it my all around to go to lens from landscaping , portraits and animals to flowers and insects , this is the lens I would reach for first for a grab and go day outing.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • Yes

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