Home Buyer's Guide Lenses-2010
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The best new glass for your D-SLR

Labels: LensesGear

This Article Features Photo Zoom


Canon TS-E 17mm ƒ/4L
New from Canon is an evolution of their Image Stabilizer technology: Hybrid IS. Typical image-stabilization systems use what’s called an angular velocity sensor (or gyro sensor) to detect camera movement. Hybrid IS enhances this by adding an additional acceleration sensor. Data from the two sensors is used to calculate compensation for both shift and angular camera shake—especially important for handheld macro photography, when even the slightest camera movement in any direction will cause blur. The first lens to incorporate Hybrid IS is the EF 100mm ƒ/2.8L Macro IS USM. If you’ve discovered the world of macro photography, this lens promises to free you from a tripod, and with its 100mm focal length, it makes for a solid portrait lens, too. Estimated Street Price: $1,049.

Canon’s 24mm tilt/shift lens, the TS-E 24mm ƒ/3.5L II, is an updated version of the popular and trusted 24mm tilt/shift, and provides the same perspective control for architectural and landscape

Carl Zeiss Distagon T* 18mm ƒ/3.5
shooting, as well as special focus effects. Now it has even better optics, coatings and independent control over simultaneous tilts and shifts. Announced simultaneously is an even wider version of the tilt/shift—the TS-E 17mm ƒ/4L—currently the widest perspective-controlling lens for the D-SLR market. Estimated Street Price: $2,199 (24mm); $2,499 (17mm).

Canon shooters now have another option—the Zeiss-made 18mm Distagon T* ƒ/3.5. Already available for Nikon and Pentax bodies, plans for the new mount were announced last spring. No doubt, many photographers are eager to get their hands on glass from the company long known for precision optics and robust all-metal mount construction, with the same optical qualities as the versions for Nikon, Pentax and Zeiss Ikon rangefinder film cameras. Estimated Street Price: $1,250.

Nikon AF-S 70-200mm ƒ/2.8G ED VR II

Nikon AF-S DX 18-200mm ƒ/3.5-5.6G ED VR II
Two new Nikon zooms target two types of shooters. The AF-S 70-200mm ƒ/2.8G ED VR II aims at pro shooters, while the AF-S DX 18-200mm ƒ/3.5-5.6G ED VR II lens is intended for those who want a little more affordability and a lot wider focal-length range. The 70-200mm tele-zoom is an updated version of Nikon’s existing zoom of the same length. This time, though, the lens is a bit smaller, a bit heavier and features improved optics, weather sealing, autofocus and vibration reduction up to, Nikon’s tests show, four full stops.

The updated 18-200mm superzoom is built for cameras sporting DX sensors, so the lens is smaller and lighter than you’d expect an 18-200mm vibration-reducing lens to be. Zoom lock keeps the lens compact during travel, and the upgraded VR II offers the same improvements for slow-speed handholding—plus a more affordable package. Estimated Street Price: $2,399 (70-200mm); $849 (18-200mm).

Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 90-250mm ƒ/2.8

Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 8mm ƒ/3.5 Fisheye
Olympus has been focusing on improvements to existing lenses via firmware upgrades to four popular models. The Zuiko Digital ED 8mm fisheye, 18-180mm superzoom, 70-300mm telephoto zoom and 90-250mm fast telephoto zoom all have been updated to work better for fast shooting in continuous AF shooting modes. These four lenses provide something for every taste, from special-effects fisheye views to fast ƒ/2.8 maximum apertures on the high-end 90-250mm zoom, versatility in the 18-180mm and high power at an affordable price in the 70-300mm tele-zoom. List Price: $799 (8mm); $499 (18-180mm); $399 (70-300mm); $5,999 (90-250mm).


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