How to make sure your new lens isn't a lemon...

splproductions

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I placed an order for a 24-70L yesterday! Should be here by Wednesday!!! Wooohoooo! :D:D:D

Anyway - I was curious if there is any specific approach you all take to making sure you didn't get a lemon when you buy a new lens. Do you shoot certain things (like you see on review sites) to check for CA, focusing issues, etc? Or do you just shoot and evaluate the images as you go? I don't exactly have an expertly-trained eye yet, and I don't want to drop this kind of money on L-glass and find out a year from now it was a bad apple, but I just didn't have the knowledge of what to look for at the time.

What are the things that would typically be "off" on a lens like this?

Thanks...
 

tirediron

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Typically, nothing should be 'off' in a lens like this. I would take it out of the box, check the feel of the focus and zoom rings and make sure they move nicely with no grinding, rough, or 'sticky' spots, mount the lens and make sure that there are no errors indicated on the camera, try focusing on very close, medium and infinite ranges, and shoot a series of images at different apertures, testing your DoF preview (if your camera is so equipped) at each different aperture. As long as all that functions and the images are nice and sharp, I'd say you're okay (and that's exactly what I would expect).
 

Netskimmer

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It would be nice to have a checklist to run down when you first get a lens to try and find any issues before the return period ends or if you are meeting the seller directly to put it through it's paces before you hand over your cash. I know of a few but I'm sure there are many more. One thing to do is research the lens and see if there are any know issues and/or recalls with that specific lens model. Try to produce pictures with flar, chromatic abborations ect. Shoot a few wide open and the dial it back a few full stops and compare. Try to use the autofocus in situations that would normally be challenging for autofocus system. Shoot in low light. Manually articulate the apurture blades to see if they function smoothly. If the lens does not have an apurture ring, there should be a little lever on the back of the lens that can be moved (carefully). Like I said, I'm sure there are more but that is all I can come up with off the top of my head.
 

MLeeK

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I like shooting a barcode when I am checking sharpness of a lens.
 

KmH

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Manually articulate the apurture blades to see if they function smoothly. If the lens does not have an apurture ring, there should be a little lever on the back of the lens that can be moved (carefully).
Well the OP is getting an L lens.

What you describe can't be done on a Canon EOS system EF or EF-S lens - they don't have an aperture lever. The motor that moves the aperture blades is in the lens.
 

Netskimmer

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Sorry for the mistake, I'm not familiar with Canon lenses.
 

TheBiles

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Manually articulate the apurture blades to see if they function smoothly. If the lens does not have an apurture ring, there should be a little lever on the back of the lens that can be moved (carefully).
Well the OP is getting an L lens.

What you describe can't be done on a Canon EOS system EF or EF-S lens - they don't have an aperture lever. The motor that moves the aperture blades is in the lens.

You can just hold down the DoF preview button and adjust the aperture.

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk
 

KmH

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But did anyway.

No doubt, there are a lot of Nikon owners unfamiliar with Nikon lenses too.
 

MichaelH

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But did anyway.

No doubt, there are a lot of Nikon owners unfamiliar with Nikon lenses too.

That's fine, I was just making sure you weren't bashing on one particular company.
 
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splproductions

splproductions

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Sometimes this forum makes me feel like I'm in high-school again... Why can't we all just be friends?
 

Netskimmer

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Who's not getting along? (In this thread)
 

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