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Ranking the worst of the kit lenses

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Anonymous
April 22, 2005 8:17:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
like this, worst to best.
Correct me if I'm wrong.
Olympus
Canon
Pentax
Nikon
Konica-Minolta

It seems like Nikon's is quite acceptable and Konica's
is the only "kit" lens that isn't a 2nd grade compared
to others in that line. Going the next step with
Olympus, Canon, or Nikon requires spending another
$300-$500 above the standard kit price, I'm not sure if
Pentax offers another zoom apart from the one that comes
with it as a kit. Because of this, it would seem that
the Minolta is the subjective "best buy" when dealing
with the standard kit.
-Rich
Anonymous
April 22, 2005 9:19:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

>On Fri, 22 Apr 2005 16:17:48 -0400, RichA <none@none.com> wrote:

>From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
>with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
>like this, worst to best.
>Correct me if I'm wrong.
>Olympus
>Canon

For the most part, the Canon 18-55 kit lens is not all that bad, and
serves a significantly credible purpose.

On the down-side, in low-light situations, It tends to be somewhat of a
total bummer.

On the Upside: the Canon 18-55 kit-lens tends to perform admirably as a
wide-angle alterative . . .
April 22, 2005 9:37:22 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

I have seen references to tests from a German magazine which rated
Olympus as 'super', top ranked, and the Canon, Nikon and Pentax next
rank down,
DonB
Related resources
April 23, 2005 4:30:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

RichA wrote:

> From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
> with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
> like this, worst to best.
> Correct me if I'm wrong.
> Olympus
> Canon
> Pentax
> Nikon
> Konica-Minolta
>


Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
testers.
--

Stacey
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 4:49:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 00:30:06 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:

>RichA wrote:
>
>> From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
>> with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
>> like this, worst to best.
>> Correct me if I'm wrong.
>> Olympus
>> Canon
>> Pentax
>> Nikon
>> Konica-Minolta
>>
>
>
>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>testers.

So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
itself?
-Rich
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 5:59:10 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Stacey wrote:
> Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and
the
> cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
> testers.

The 14-45mm is cheap? Its listed at $250 at B&H. I don't know about
other kit lens, but the Canon 18-55mm can be had for about $100. Now,
thats cheap.

- Siddhartha
April 23, 2005 5:59:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

RichA wrote:


>>
>>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>>testers.
>
> So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
> itself?
>

ZzYawn...

http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrowse.asp?folder_id=11...

Yea, this camera really is shitty..
--

Stacey
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 6:02:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Basic Wedge wrote:
> My own results agree. I rate the Olympus 14-54 as a good, sharp lens.
I've
> also seen good results from the Nikon 18-70. I have heard the Canon
17-55 is
> a lens to avoid, while the 17-85 is a better choice. Did I hear
correctly,
> some of Konica Minolta's lenses are actually made for them by Tamron?

If you have the money then you can avoid the 18-55mm. But if you are on
a budget then the Canon 18-55mm offers very good value for money. It
can't be used in MF very well because the MF is a bit wobbly and you
won't get much out of it in low-light but other than that the image
quality is pretty good given its price.

- Siddhartha
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 6:32:54 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"DonB" wrote ...
>I have seen references to tests from a German magazine which rated
> Olympus as 'super', top ranked, and the Canon, Nikon and Pentax next
> rank down,

-------------------------

My own results agree. I rate the Olympus 14-54 as a good, sharp lens. I've
also seen good results from the Nikon 18-70. I have heard the Canon 17-55 is
a lens to avoid, while the 17-85 is a better choice. Did I hear correctly,
some of Konica Minolta's lenses are actually made for them by Tamron?

Rob
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 7:31:57 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"birch999@hotmail.com" <Stan Birch> wrote in message
news:426963cf.89318468@news.netrover.com...

> On the Upside: the Canon 18-55 kit-lens tends to perform admirably as a
> wide-angle alterative . . .

It gives good results, but it does have a very cheap feel to it.
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 8:44:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 01:59:22 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:

>RichA wrote:
>
>
>>>
>>>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>>>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>>>testers.
>>
>> So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
>> itself?
>>
>
>ZzYawn...
>
>http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrowse.asp?folder_id=11...
>
>Yea, this camera really is shitty..

Your shots are excellent, saturated and sharp.
"Problem" doesn't mean bad, just not as good as similarly priced
cameras from other manufacturers. In most tests I've
seen they've scored it lower for overall image quality
than Canon's Rebel XT and the new Pentax, principally because
of noise. So it's unlikely you'd see the problem much in well-lit
shots where you can use low ISO speeds.
Shots like this might be an issue though;

http://www.photozo.com/album/showphoto.php?photo=48282&...

-Rich
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 12:39:20 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"birch999@hotmail.com" <Stan Birch> wrote in message
news:426963cf.89318468@news.netrover.com...
> >On Fri, 22 Apr 2005 16:17:48 -0400, RichA <none@none.com> wrote:

> For the most part, the Canon 18-55 kit lens is not all that bad, and
> serves a significantly credible purpose.
>
I bought a 50 1.8 having been told about its outstanding qualities.
I was shocked to find test shots of similar subjects taken using the 18-55
and 50 1.8 were indistinguishable on screen.
Pulling up the corners and edges 'till the pixels were obvious they were
still on a par.
Either I've got a flukey good 18-55 or an inferior 50 1.8

But who cares about MTF data - the image is everything ;o)
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 1:16:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"Tumbleweed" <Shovels@five.paces> wrote in message
news:D 4cu3c$tef$1@newsg4.svr.pol.co.uk...
>
> "birch999@hotmail.com" <Stan Birch> wrote in message
> news:426963cf.89318468@news.netrover.com...
> > >On Fri, 22 Apr 2005 16:17:48 -0400, RichA <none@none.com> wrote:
>
> > For the most part, the Canon 18-55 kit lens is not all that bad, and
> > serves a significantly credible purpose.
> >
> I bought a 50 1.8 having been told about its outstanding qualities.
> I was shocked to find test shots of similar subjects taken using the 18-55
> and 50 1.8 were indistinguishable on screen.
>

It's easy to convince one's self of anything.

Greg
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 2:26:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Tumbleweed wrote:
> I bought a 50 1.8 having been told about its outstanding qualities.
> I was shocked to find test shots of similar subjects taken using the
18-55
> and 50 1.8 were indistinguishable on screen.
> Pulling up the corners and edges 'till the pixels were obvious they
were
> still on a par.
> Either I've got a flukey good 18-55 or an inferior 50 1.8
>
> But who cares about MTF data - the image is everything ;o)

True. I compared my 18-55mm with a Pentax Super Takumar SMC 50mm f/1.7.
I couldn't tell much difference.

- Siddhartha
Anonymous
April 23, 2005 3:47:30 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"G.T." <getnews1@dslextreme.com> wrote in message
news:116kt6k76sc9pfd@corp.supernews.com...
>
> "Tumbleweed" <Shovels@five.paces> wrote in message
> news:D 4cu3c$tef$1@newsg4.svr.pol.co.uk...
>>
>> "birch999@hotmail.com" <Stan Birch> wrote in message
>> news:426963cf.89318468@news.netrover.com...
>> > >On Fri, 22 Apr 2005 16:17:48 -0400, RichA <none@none.com> wrote:
>>
>> > For the most part, the Canon 18-55 kit lens is not all that bad,
>> > and
>> > serves a significantly credible purpose.
>> >
>> I bought a 50 1.8 having been told about its outstanding qualities.
>> I was shocked to find test shots of similar subjects taken using
>> the 18-55
>> and 50 1.8 were indistinguishable on screen.
>>
>
> It's easy to convince one's self of anything.
>

That's true, even if it isn't germane to a specific instance.

--
Frank ess
April 24, 2005 4:23:03 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"RichA" <none@none.com> wrote in message
news:582k619pqi17hcofvv48srmlcn25fqen38@4ax.com...
> On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 01:59:22 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>RichA wrote:
>>
>>
>>>>
>>>>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>>>>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>>>>testers.
>>>
>>> So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
>>> itself?
>>>
>>
>>ZzYawn...
>>
>>http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrowse.asp?folder_id=11...
>>
>>Yea, this camera really is shitty..
>
> Your shots are excellent, saturated and sharp<


Really?- those ducks look as though they're swimming in an oil slick - the
result of noise post-processing?, or the infamous in-camera noise
'smearing'?
April 24, 2005 5:00:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

RichA wrote:

> On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 01:59:22 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>>RichA wrote:
>>
>>
>>>>
>>>>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>>>>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>>>>testers.
>>>
>>> So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
>>> itself?
>>>
>>
>>ZzYawn...
>>
>>http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrowse.asp?folder_id=11...
>>
>>Yea, this camera really is shitty..
>
> Your shots are excellent, saturated and sharp.

Exactly and look great printed 11X14 and up as well..


> "Problem" doesn't mean bad, just not as good as similarly priced
> cameras from other manufacturers.

I've seen the color saturation of some of these "better" cameras and for me
they don't look better, YMMV which is why people buy different cameras.


> In most tests I've
> seen they've scored it lower for overall image quality
> than Canon's Rebel XT and the new Pentax, principally because
> of noise.

Looking at 100% crops, I agree the canon is better. But I don't view images
at 100% do you?


> So it's unlikely you'd see the problem much in well-lit
> shots where you can use low ISO speeds.
> Shots like this might be an issue though;
>
> http://www.photozo.com/album/showphoto.php?photo=48282&...
>

Might be, then again might not. BTW several of those shots at my site where
shot at ISO400, some at ISO 100. Can you pick out which is which without
looking at the EXIF data?

--

Stacey
April 24, 2005 5:03:35 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Parker wrote:

>
> "RichA" <none@none.com> wrote in message

>>
>> Your shots are excellent, saturated and sharp<
>
>
> Really?- those ducks look as though they're swimming in an oil slick -

I suppose you have never heard of "selective focus"? That shot was done with
the lens wide open so of course -only- the front duck is going to be in
focus...

Typical ignorant coment from an OM basher..

--

Stacey
April 24, 2005 5:04:40 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Siddhartha Jain wrote:

> Stacey wrote:
>> Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and
> the
>> cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>> testers.
>
> The 14-45mm is cheap? Its listed at $250 at B&H.

And the "kit" is only $100 more with the lens... Why would you buy the body
only and then the lens?



--

Stacey
April 24, 2005 5:05:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Siddhartha Jain wrote:

>
> True. I compared my 18-55mm with a Pentax Super Takumar SMC 50mm f/1.7.
> I couldn't tell much difference.
>


LOL
--

Stacey
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 5:29:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

On Sun, 24 Apr 2005 01:00:48 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:

>RichA wrote:
>
>> On Sat, 23 Apr 2005 01:59:22 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:
>>
>>>RichA wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>Where did you gather this? The olympus kit lens (both the 14-54 and the
>>>>>cheap 14-45) has been ranked as one of the best kit lenses by several
>>>>>testers.
>>>>
>>>> So the weak point I've seen is actually the Olympus camera, the E-300
>>>> itself?
>>>>
>>>
>>>ZzYawn...
>>>
>>>http://www.villagephotos.com/pubbrowse.asp?folder_id=11...
>>>
>>>Yea, this camera really is shitty..
>>
>> Your shots are excellent, saturated and sharp.
>
>Exactly and look great printed 11X14 and up as well..
>
>
>> "Problem" doesn't mean bad, just not as good as similarly priced
>> cameras from other manufacturers.
>
>I've seen the color saturation of some of these "better" cameras and for me
>they don't look better, YMMV which is why people buy different cameras.
>
>
>> In most tests I've
>> seen they've scored it lower for overall image quality
>> than Canon's Rebel XT and the new Pentax, principally because
>> of noise.
>
>Looking at 100% crops, I agree the canon is better. But I don't view images
>at 100% do you?
>
>
>> So it's unlikely you'd see the problem much in well-lit
>> shots where you can use low ISO speeds.
>> Shots like this might be an issue though;
>>
>> http://www.photozo.com/album/showphoto.php?photo=48282&...
>>
>
>Might be, then again might not. BTW several of those shots at my site where
>shot at ISO400, some at ISO 100. Can you pick out which is which without
>looking at the EXIF data?

I don't think so. Maybe the duckie one was at 400?
But I'm wondering why you'd need to shoot at 400 unless
you were doing really close-in macro without a flash or there was some
major action involved since all the shots appear to have
been taken in sunny weather?
-Rich
April 24, 2005 7:39:23 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

RichA wrote:

> On Sun, 24 Apr 2005 01:00:48 -0400, Stacey <fotocord@yahoo.com> wrote:

>>> http://www.photozo.com/album/showphoto.php?photo=48282&...
>>>
>>
>>Might be, then again might not. BTW several of those shots at my site
>>where shot at ISO400, some at ISO 100. Can you pick out which is which
>>without looking at the EXIF data?
>
> I don't think so. Maybe the duckie one was at 400?

Nope, but it was done with the 40-150 "kit" lens which I returned for the
50-200. It was too soft wide open which was where this one was shot. Again
the lens makes more difference than the body it's used on IMHO.

I had this posted as an example of the wide open performance of that cheap
zoom for another group, of course another canon guy JUMPS on that
one? :-)

> But I'm wondering why you'd need to shoot at 400 unless
> you were doing really close-in macro without a flash or there was some
> major action involved since all the shots appear to have
> been taken in sunny weather?
>

Actually several were taken on cloudy/overcast days and I needed the shutter
speed to be able to hand hold these..

The 400 shots were:

potsm
ctwebflower
web2 flower
webaz2flower

I guess my point is, there is so much hype about noise because the canon
guys know their camera at 100% viewing has less of it, so of course that
becomes the most important factor in choosing a camera. This camera is
supposed to be unusable at ISO400 yet no one can ever tell which were shot
at ISO100 and which were shot at ISO400. Yes if you want to look at 100%
crops shot at ISO 800 and up, buy the canon camera. Otherwise stop looking
at 100% crops and look at the actual images and colors each can produce.
--

Stacey
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 3:42:03 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Stacey wrote:
> And the "kit" is only $100 more with the lens... Why would you buy
the body
> only and then the lens?

Sorry, didn't know that. Yes, makes sense then.

- Siddhartha
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 3:44:02 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

Stacey wrote:
> Siddhartha Jain wrote:
>
> >
> > True. I compared my 18-55mm with a Pentax Super Takumar SMC 50mm
f/1.7.
> > I couldn't tell much difference.
> >
>
>
> LOL
> --

Whats funny about that?
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 6:51:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

RichA <none@none.com> wrote:

> From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
> with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
> like this, worst to best.
<snip>

Is trolling rec.arts.movies.current-films not enough for you
anymore? I'd say we have enough trolls and kooks here already.
Anonymous
April 24, 2005 11:57:36 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

"Siddhartha Jain" <losttoy@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1114368242.319275.28560@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com...
> Stacey wrote:
>> Siddhartha Jain wrote:
>>
>> >
>> > True. I compared my 18-55mm with a Pentax Super Takumar SMC 50mm
> f/1.7.
>> > I couldn't tell much difference.
>> >
>>
>>
>> LOL
>> --
>
> Whats funny about that?
>
It's not funny - inmates often chortle to themselves.
They also dribble....
Anonymous
April 25, 2005 12:18:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

On 24 Apr 2005 14:51:53 -0700, emmaknaps@yahoo.com (Emma Knaps) wrote:

>RichA <none@none.com> wrote:
>
>> From what I gather, the standard zoom supplied
>> with the entry level DSLRs would rank something
>> like this, worst to best.
><snip>
>
>Is trolling rec.arts.movies.current-films not enough for you
>anymore? I'd say we have enough trolls and kooks here already.

Said one of them.
-Rich
Anonymous
April 25, 2005 5:36:37 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

> Going the next step with
> Olympus, Canon, or Nikon requires spending another
> $300-$500 above the standard kit price, I'm not sure if
> Pentax offers another zoom apart from the one that comes
> with it as a kit.

Many, of course, but perhaps not in exactly the same range (18-55).
There is a 16-45 (I think) that is supposedly better (and
correspondingly more expensive). I'd say your basic assumption is
right - while considered better than average for a "kit" lens, it isn't
Pentax's top-of-the-line. But when people think in terms of lens
upgrades, the 16-45 isn't what they usually look at. Pentax made one
relatively inexpensive general purpose zoom that people seem to like a
*lot* - a 28-105 (3.2-4.5) that sells for just over $200 - but it has
apparently just been discontinued (a semi-confirmed rumour of the last
week or so). This is becoming a source of much grief in the Pentax
world, judging by the reactions on the dpreview.com forums: Pentax is
apparently phasing out their 35mm lenses in favor of digital-only ones.
The 18-55 is one of the digital series, the 28-105 is not. It seems the
new inexpensive general purpose zoom of choice for Pentax will probably
be the Sigma 18-125 - also a digital-only lens. I don't think people
are considering it a real steup up from the kit in quality, but it has a
considerably greater range, and for $250 it seems a decent buy. Some
retailers are offering the camera bundled with this instead of the usual
Pentax 18-55.

--------------
Marc Sabatella
marc@outsideshore.com

The Outside Shore
Music, art, & educational materials:
http://www.outsideshore.com/
April 26, 2005 4:31:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.slr-systems (More info?)

In article <1114246976.802066.182530@l41g2000cwc.googlegroups.com>,
Siddhartha Jain <losttoy@gmail.com> wrote:

>If you have the money then you can avoid the 18-55mm. But if you are on
>a budget then the Canon 18-55mm offers very good value for money.

I bought the kit because I wanted the instant gratification. Same
reason I bought a Tamron for the next lens. I've got to learn this
camera quick, because I'm heading to location in 2 weeks. I can't
afford any expensive lenses in that time frame, partly because I
spent so much on the 20D body. But also, I don't have time to make
the kind of evaluation I need to make before buying such an expensive
item as a lens. So I took the kit lens, knowing its quality, and
knowing it will get the job done, and I also bought a Tamron zoom based
entirely on individual reviews. These lenses will get me through the
summer. After that, you can start talking to me about IS lenses.
!