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Old Oct 8, 2011, 11:44 PM   #1
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Default Photozone review if Pentax 18-135 lens

I had just about decided on this lens to take to Italy till I read the review at photozone. They really panned the optical performance. Saying it was not a good lens for architectural work. Well, thats 80% of Italy. What are your thoughts? I really like the fact it's weather resistant, and I love quick shift.

Last edited by tony3dd; Oct 8, 2011 at 11:50 PM.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 12:42 AM   #2
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The general consensus of the 18-135 is that it's so-so optically (relatively speaking) but if you want and need WR then it's great and saves you paying out lots of 000s for a 16-50 / 50-135 to cover a similar range. Most people feel it is over-priced but again there's little option if you require WR.

I think quite a few people may have mentioned to you on your various threads (both here and at PF) that if you want a high multiplier zoom then there have to be compromises somewhere along the line (quality zooms don't have multipliers of more than x3). All that said as an all-in-one general purpose travel zoom with WR (which from your posts seems to be what you are looking for) it has no equal. Buy a used one and then re-sell it when you return from your trip !
Pentax : 15 Ltd, 77 Ltd, 43/1.9 Ltd, Cosina 55/1.2, DA*300/4, Contax Zeiss Distagon 28/2.8, Raynox 150/250, AFA x1.7, Metz 50 af1.

Nikon : D800, D600, Sigma 500/4.5, Sigma 120-300/2.8, Zeiss Distagon ZF2 - 21/2.8, Zeiss Distagon ZF2 - 35/2.0, Nikkor 85/1.8G, Sigma 50/1.4. Nikon x1.4 TC, Sigma x2.0 TC

Last edited by Frogfish; Oct 9, 2011 at 12:50 AM.
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Old Oct 10, 2011, 10:46 AM   #3
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I have also read the photozone review, and I don't know how to reconcile that review with the high praise the lens received at PF. The PF review said it's a very good lens, notably better than the Pentax kit lens, but not in the same league as the DA* lenses. As Kevin has pointed out, top-notch zoom lenses almost never exceed a 3X zoom range, and the 18-135 has a range of 7.5X. The 18-135 is certainly not perfect, but most reviews (except for photozone) have said it's a fine lens.

If you want absolutely superb image quality, get some prime limited lenses or a few DA* zooms. They're very expensive and will weigh down your camera bag considerably. If you want to travel light, the 18-135 is probably a good choice, despite it less than world class optics. I shoot mostly with zooms of intermediate quality, and while I would like some top notch lenses, I'm happy with what I have. But I do have one very fine lens: the FA 50mm f/1.4, which is lightweight, small, and sharp as a tack. When I want a very shallow depth of field, or razor sharpness, I use that lens, and zoom with my feet.
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