Excerpt: Lens started out looking promising but I decided to return it instead. I wanted a general light weight carry all lens for my T2i instead lugging the heavy 28-70 2.8L. This lens on occasion could be very sharp but it was inconsitantly, with multiple times being extremely soft, almost always in the 15-18mm range. I don't know if I had a bad copy, perhaps others are better.
Summary: Update, 11/21/12: Received my second copy of this lens on Nov. 1, and did some comparison test shots with copy #2 and my original 18-55 kit lens. Happy to say that the 15-85 mm lens came out on top this time. I've taken a fair number of people pictures with and without flash, and a few landscapes, mostly fall foliage pics. Like most other reviewers, I'm quite pleased with the image quality, and everything else about the lens operation.
Excerpt: This felt like a well build lens. It seemed rugged and all operations felt smooth. Unfortunately I never got to use it. When I opened the box on my 1st one I saw 3 particles of dust behind the front element. Since this was a brand new lens and the particles were close to the center and not small I sent it back for an exchange. The 2nd version was just as bad.
First Sample Defective - Second Sample Lacking Sharpness
Michael Morgan, Amazon
15 November 2011
Summary: Maybe I'm just unlucky or too critical but for this price and limited focal length range I expected this lens to outperform the $200 cheaper and much wider range Canon 18-200mm. The first sample I purchased did not get to first base and was decentered - sharp on the right and fuzzy on the left of the frame. Sent it back, waited a month and tried again. The second sample was not decentered and provided seemingly sharp photos.
Excerpt: I purchased this lens along with a T2i body from B&H; expecting an upgrade in image quality from the EF-S 18-55mm. However, I needed to return one lens due to a very soft corner on the images. The replacement lens has uniform soft corners, so I can't say it was an improvement. Also, I'm encountering strong (almost neon looking) chromatic aberration at wide angles. Vignetting is slight due to the T2i correction setting.
Excerpt: I bought this lens thinking it would save me money in the long run. but once i realized the massive limitations of this lens. it bacame clear i was better off with either primes. ( not a huge deal to switch lenses )or L series. F 5.6 is kind of a joke. i would recomend this lens to someone who is a casual perhaps vacation photographer. if you are an aspiring proffessional.
Excerpt: I bought this to replace the kit 18-55MM lens and after extensive testing both using charts and in the field returned it. Verdict: not nearly superior enough over the 18-55MM to justify the price. Contrast was quite good, an area where the kit lens is weak. But the vignetting and overall sharpness were disappointing. The lens is very well constructed but that does not carry the day. Also, the thing was HEAVY. Lastly, I was disappointed in the bokeh, or lack thereof.
Pros: Durable, Fast / accurate auto-focus, Rugged, Strong Construction
Cons: Heavy, Heavy Vignetting, Semi sharp images, Weak bokeh
Summary: The Canon 15-85 lens was very appealing to me because it has construction features lacking in the cheaper lenses, such as a focus scale, for example. The main appeal for me is that it covers the zoom range I use for most of my photography, which minimizes the need to swap lenses on the camera. This lens has had excellent reviews, which is why I opted to purchase one.
Excerpt: I purchased this lens to complement my new 7D thinking it would be a good walk-around, leave it on the camera lens. Unfortunately, I traded in two L-Lenses and a 30D body to buy the 7D and 15-85 combination. HUGE mistake! While it's possible that I just have a bad sample, the best shots from this lens doesn't even begin to approach the quality of some of the bad shots I got from my 30D and 16-35 L combination. Everything looks like I'm shooting through haze.