The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens is the standard kit lens on most DSLR bodies. You can buy the Canon Rebel 300D, the Canon 350D, the Canon 20D and the Canon 30D and you will find this lens as a common standard on most of these bodies. The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens is a cheap lens, and I use the word cheap because in my personal opinion that is all that can really encompass this lens.
The thing I really dislike about this lens is the manual focus. You actually have to turn a tiny little focus ring at the very from of the lens in order to manually focus. What does this mean for professionals? If you think a polarizer would be a nice addition to this lens, then you better be ready to put in some serious effort, because after you get the polarizer adjusted correctly and then use the autofocus it changes your adjustment because the outer ring moves. Letís just say that this lens is pain in neck for professionals.
The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens comes standard with the powerful ring type USM (Ultrasonic Motor) drive which enables you to have lightning fast focusing, with a silent motor so you donít scare away the wildlife. It also helps to be able to focus quickly and accurately when you donít think conditions will permit.
The actual focal length of the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens on a DSLR body with a 1.6x crop is going to be closer to 29-88mm, which make for a nice classic range great for most situations.
The build quality of the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens is decent at best. You will not see a range finder window built into this lens.
The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens does not have a very big problem with vignetting and will only show really noticeable vignetting when it is wide open at an f/3.5 or f/4.5.
The image quality of the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens is not amazing, but then again this is an extremely cheap lens. At 18mm you will find the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens to be pretty soft except for at f/8 which is consistent with most lenses. At 35mm the lens tends to be the sharpest. It seemed to perform well at f/4.5-f/8 and then started to soften up as you stopped it down further. At 55mm I would avoid taking pictures, okay Iím just kidding, but the image quality at 55mm degrades substantially and did not seem to improve much at really any f-stop.
You find that the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens will allow the appearance of chromatic aberrations quite readily. This is not a problem, well not a huge problem in the digital age where you can correct this for the most part in the raw settings.
All-in-all the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens is a descent lens at best. The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens will perform decent for the price you pay for it, but do not expect anything amazing. The Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens did not impress me, but you canít argue with the price, and at 18mm-35mm it seemed to perform fairly well. If you canít afford something better than the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 USM lens, it is not a bad lens for the price you pay.
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