My First Lens Upgrade: EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS

I just upgraded my Rebel T2i’s lens from the kit lens EF-S 18-55m IS to EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS. The day before, I was about to buy the Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC LD Aspherical (IF) MACRO, which I really took time to research beforehand prior to making my final decision to buy as my all-around lens. I also had done my rounds at the malls and other department stores that sell lenses and I knew of one which had one in its stock.

As luck would have it, the remaining Tamron unit turned out to be defective. The focus ring turns in stops and starts (so un-smooth), which even a beginner like me feels really wrong. (The store hasn’t returned it to wherever they bought it from. Are they hoping they could still fool someone to buy that defective unit?) I was kinda crestfallen in that I’d been anticipating to spend the rest of the day shooting with it. Another store (in the other mall) promises to deliver within 3 days if I order it. Nah, can’t wait for 3 more days. So, back to the (google) research board I went, with an iron intent to get myself a new lens not a day later than tomorrow. With my first encounter of a Tamron lens being so very un-satisfactory, I got dis-illusioned and now doubted the quality of all other non-Canon lenses. So, I did not even care to check out the Sigma lenses anymore.

I momentarily entertained the EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS, which is cheaper and so within my budget. Thing is, I thought I wouldn’t want to be changing lenses during shooting sessions. My goal, after all, as a photo hobbyist, is to have an all-around lens I can use for almost all situations. So, I finally decided to go for the EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS. The price is just a bit over thrice the 55-250mm but I feel it will serve my purposes very adequately. It also is bigger in diameter and length than the kit lens, which makes my Rebel T2i appear a little more serious-looking. Plus, I added a lens hood (EW-78D) to it. Now, my camera looks pro. Yup, only the camera, I must hasten to admit. (There’s an affordable really pro-looking lens, the EF 70-200mm f/4L USM Telephoto lens but it takes a really pro hand to handle it as it doesn’t have Image Stabilization).

Test Shots

Here are a few test shots using the EF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 IS. I was mainly concerned with checking the zoom capacity and quality of the lens. So, don’t look for quality of composition, or whatever criteria you have in mind. In fact, the amateur in me showed after I took the first set below and realized that I had not changed the ISO which had been set the night before at 400. Grrr.

Back Office View

At 18mm: View from the rear of the new (under construction) office building
At 50mm
At <strong>200mm</strong>
At 200mm

Closing Time @ Dunkin’

At 28mm. Nearing closing time at Dunkin'
At 200mm

The Equipment

Hereunder are the equipment I used (pictures not mine).

The Canon Rebel T2i
The EF-S 18-200mm IS
The Canon EW-78D Lens Hood

The Alternatives

The Tamron 18-270mm. Great range, affordable price.
The Sigma 18-200mm. Works with Canon cameras, very affordable.

JJC Lens Hood (replaces EW-78D)

Really, had that Tamron unit at the mall been not defective, I would have bought it right away. Anyway, I got the EFS18-200mm IS now, and I’m loving’ it. 🙂 Be showing off more photos soon.


  1. Hi James

    How is it all going here on your blog? I love your photos. Have you any more plans for 2011? I have a new things for my blog.

    When I publish my new post tomorrow I am going to share my 2011 goals. I will also be publishing a newsletter for the first time, so really looking forward to what 2011 holds in the blogosphere.

    Patricia Perth Australia
    Patricia@lavenderuses´s latest blog post ..At Lavenderuses Safety First Means…

    1. Hi Patricia, let me first greet you a happy and more prosperous new year.

      Plans for 2011? Of course, I have plans, but I’ve yet to put them in writing (knowing that goals put in writing have high probabilities of getting achieved). And I’m actually grateful that you mentioned it here to remind me about it. You know, I’m a member of the Procrastinators Club. 🙂 I’ll be waiting to check out your 2011 goals post, so I can find inspiration to draft up my own too. These past few months, I have not been doing my regular rounds of commenting on other blogs. The best I’ve done is visiting Sire’s blog. The guy has always been some sort of model to me, him being more experienced in the blogging world.

      Congratulations on your newsletter. I see, you’ve finally implemented one. Me, I still have to muster courage, time and data to come up with my own. I’ll sign up for your newsletter soon as I get to your blog. Promise. 🙂
      james-mdeo´s latest blog post ..2011 Year Of The Rabbit

    1. That’s what I’ve noticed. Every experienced photographer I’ve met has a 50mm in their lens collection. Of course, the next lens for me would be a 50mm prime lens. 🙂

    1. Hi Sam! I’m no pro photographer so I am in no position to recommend anything. However, I have researched a lot prior to buying my very first DSLR camera and I found that the majority of pro photographers recommend either a Canon or a Nikon.

      Thanks Sam. I appreciate your feedback. 🙂

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