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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 19 Dec 2011 (Monday) 14:47
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New Lens - Checking for "Good Copy?

 
Roxie2401
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Dec 19, 2011 14:47 |  #1

I just got a new "L" lens and want to know what the recommended technique would be to check to be sure its a "good copy."

I keep seeing that term, "good copy" and would like to give this lens a relatively comprehensive test during the "return period." I suspect most of the testing would be in the area of "sharpness" since I know that the zoom, IS, etc. are all working correctly.

Is there a text book test? Should it be done at different apertures?

Since there is the possibility of a second lens, too, do the tests vary with each particular lens?

For example: Do you test a 70-200 f/2.8 IS differently from a 24-105 f/4 IS?

I did do a search and found a lot of hits on "good copy" but more in the terms of "I have got a good copy" but nothing on how to check.

Thanks very much for suggestions.




  
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Capeachy
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Dec 19, 2011 15:09 |  #2

Check this out:
http://www.lensrentals​.com …010/11/how-to-test-a-lens (external link)


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Virto
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Dec 19, 2011 15:38 |  #3

Trying to perform some "text-book test" is usually going to end in second guessing yourself and your equipment.

Mount the lens and go take a variety of shots like you would if you've had it in your camera bag since the dawn of time. Then review your shots and see if anything strikes you as being odd. At that point, you can consider worrying about focus charts and the like.

Lots of people get caught up in "good copy, bad copy" talk on here, and they end up unboxing a lens, snapping a focus chart and then throwing a fit. Just go try it first, then there are resources here that we can point you to if you feel things aren't quite right.

Note: I'm guilty of doing this, myself. I drove myself nuts until I went out and used lenses for actual photography. Learn from my mistakes. :)


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Rocky ­ Rhode
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Dec 19, 2011 15:39 as a reply to  @ Capeachy's post |  #4

Being it's an "L" the chances of quality issues are substancially reduced.

Get a focus chart and do the 45-degree shot wide open to check for front/back focusing.


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crn3371
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Dec 19, 2011 19:02 |  #5

Just go out and shoot with. I wouldn't go straight into test mode.




  
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Roxie2401
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Dec 20, 2011 06:19 as a reply to  @ crn3371's post |  #6

Thanks for the input.

I just wanted some suggestions so I can know its good before the return policy expires (30 days from purchase).

Been shooting, but was hoping there were some cookbook ideas on how to check it out.

Thanks




  
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ben805
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Dec 20, 2011 07:04 |  #7

crn3371 wrote in post #13570802 (external link)
Just go out and shoot with. I wouldn't go straight into test mode.

+1

put it on tripod and shoot something around the house, anything, cup, lens box, your family, dog, cat, whatever. If the lens AF properly and sharp enough for you then it is a good copy. :)


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rick_reno
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Dec 20, 2011 09:26 |  #8

I assume they're good and use them, if they're not (and I have yet to get a bad one) it'll be obvious. I've found if I look for problems, I can usually manufacture one.




  
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artyH
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Dec 20, 2011 09:34 |  #9

I would use the lens inside and outside for the types of photos that you would want to use the lens for.
If I get a fast lens, like a 50f1.4, I take photos of people indoors at large apertures. If I get sharp photos at f1.8, then fine. Mine works fine wide open, and is much better at f1.8 or f2. You also need to use the lens outside stopped down at varying distances.
For a zoom, I'd shoot lots of photos at varying apertures, focal lengths and distances. If everything comes out fine - then I don't bother with shooting test charts.
Which lens did you get?




  
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MNUplander
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Dec 20, 2011 09:52 |  #10

Why would you waste your time on this?

Instead of shooting batteries, brick walls, charts and your cat why don't you just go use it for the purpose intended when you bought it? Do all those boring tests if you see a problem that is recurring and re-creatable across many situations.

Geez, you'd figure "L" lenses had about a 65% failure rate based on the number of "is my lens sharp", "how to test", etc. threads...


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Dimitris
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Dec 20, 2011 09:56 |  #11

Go out and shoot. If it looks good then it is good.


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sapearl
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Dec 20, 2011 10:06 |  #12

rick_reno wrote in post #13573351 (external link)
I assume they're good and use them, if they're not (and I have yet to get a bad one) it'll be obvious. I've found if I look for problems, I can usually manufacture one.

Absolutley - + on what Rick says ;). Time and time again we have seen some here manufacture aggravation where none exists.

As Arty has also suggested go out and just take some regular pictures of normal stuff in good strong light that will give you good contrast which with objects having well defined edges. A big mistake some folks make is to shoot their "test pics" indoors of fuzzy objects under miserable lighting with no contrast, and then claim their "copy is soft."

Shoot buildings or fences with lots of nice strong lines and edges under bright light and that will reveal a true picture.:D


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Roxie2401
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Dec 20, 2011 12:17 |  #13

Arty, sapearl,

It was a good year or I was just foolish, but I got both the 70-200 MK II and the 24-105 L lenses. My first "L glass" and you can really tell the difference.

Right now I'm using them on my crop 7D - and yes, I'm missing the wide end from my kit 17-85 but these are so much sharper and well constructed.

It is taking a little getting used to in that the zoom ring on the EF lenses is the near ring and was the larger outer ring on the EF-S 17-85. I keep trying to zoom with the focus ring!

The second thing I can't get used to is the IS on these. My kit lens has it and it was almost like it "locking in" (I could see it happen). But on these, I hear it working, know its working but can't see it "happen."

After spending that much, I just wanted to make sure I wouldn't miss the return period but I really think "soft" or bad copies is pretty rare for these lenses.

Probably wasted a thread on the forum. Thanks to everyone for the help and suggestions, especially the brick buildings or straight walls edges, etc.

artyH wrote in post #13573384 (external link)
I would use the lens inside and outside for the types of photos that you would want to use the lens for.
If I get a fast lens, like a 50f1.4, I take photos of people indoors at large apertures. If I get sharp photos at f1.8, then fine. Mine works fine wide open, and is much better at f1.8 or f2. You also need to use the lens outside stopped down at varying distances.
For a zoom, I'd shoot lots of photos at varying apertures, focal lengths and distances. If everything comes out fine - then I don't bother with shooting test charts.
Which lens did you get?




  
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modchild
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Dec 20, 2011 12:28 |  #14

Take some pictures with it, pixel peep at them and see it you're happy with its sharpness. Bang the pics on the computer and zoom into 100% on a decent monitor and if you can't see a problem then the chances are there is no problem. I've never done any "testing" as such on any of my lenses and so far I've never had a problem with them.


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kfreels
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Dec 20, 2011 13:37 |  #15

The only test I would really worry about would be a simple focus test to make sure it is focusing where it should be. A slight back or front focusing problem will drive you nuts. You'll spend weeks wondering "is it my camera", "is it the lens?", "is it my technique?". You may not even notice the problem on "normal" shots at f5.6 or f8 taken at a distance and then 3 months later when you try to shoot something close up at f2.8 you suddenly find that the eyes aren't sharp, but the ears or nose is. By then it's too late to return and you have to send it in for warranty repair and you have to pay the shipping to do so.

I understand where others are coming from. You don't want to become obsessed with zooming in to 100% and making sure that the lens is as sharp as someone else's version of the same lens. This behavior is insane and to prevent it, people often suggest "just go out and shoot". But without a controlled test you can't know for certain if you have a focus problem, or if you just missed the spot you meant to focus on. A simple controlled test takes 5 minutes and as long as it comes out OK and the images themselves look nice to you, then you should be good to go.

http://focustestchart.​com/chart.html (external link)


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New Lens - Checking for "Good Copy?
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