Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM

Last updated (12 April’12):
- Review by

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM features 15 – 85mm at focal length with maximum aperture of 1:3.5-5.6. The lens construction has 17 elements in 12 groups with diagonal Angle of View at 84 degrees 30′ to 18 degrees 25′. Focus System: Inner focusing system with USM, Closest Focusing Distance of 1.15 ft. / 0.35m and has a filter size of 72mm. The Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM lens weighs 20.3 oz./575g and it measures 81.6 mm in diameter and 87.5mm in long.

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM
Overall Rating: ★★★★☆ | Latest Price Info

Expert Reviews

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Reviews reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“With very good, if not excellent results for sharpness, resistance to chromatic aberration, distortion and corner shading, Canon has released an excellent general purpose lens. If you were looking for an upgrade to a kit lens and can’t decide between wide angle and telephoto, this could be an excellent choice.”
Rating: ★★★★½ reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
” The lens behaves evenly and taking into account the range of focal lengths it provides, it’s hard to write any bad words about. Huge praise for Canon!”
Rating: N/A reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“The image stabiliser was slightly better than we found in the EF-S 18-135mm lens. It enabled us to use shutter speeds as slow as 1/6 second with a focal length of 85mm, which is slightly better than Canon’s claim of four f-stops stabilisation advantage. “
Rating: ★★★★½ reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“The EF-S 15-85mm IS USM is arguably Canon’s best all-round general-purpose zoom for its range of cropped-frame EOS bodies…A perfect upgrade from an existing kit zoom and the ideal combination for higher-end bodies like the EOS 50D and 7D, the EF-S 15-85mm IS USM is one of Canon’s better lenses and comes Highly Recommended. “
Rating: ★★★★☆ reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“This lens has proved itself a capable successor to the popular EF-S 17-85mm IS USM. Although it has some flaws, it is capable of producing excellent results, so long as the limitations of the lens are taken into account. The lens handles well, is very sharp at most aperture and focal lengths, and the Image Stabilizer performs excellently.”
Rating: ★★★★½ reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“The Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 USM IS is certainly a desirable lens … Overall we’d say that the lens is slightly over-priced regarding its performance but eventually the street prices will come down to more sane levels. “
Rating: ★★★☆☆ reviews the Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM and writes;
“Offering top-tier image quality over an excellent general purpose focal length range in a nicely-sized/weighted/built body with great AF and an excellent implementation of Image Stabilization at a for-what-you-get great price. …The Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Lens is a great leave-on-the-camera lens – It is going to share this role with my 17-55. .”
Rating: N/A

Video Reviews

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Reviews

Review Video By cameralabs

Review Video By Luke Schneider

User Opinions

Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM User Reviews

Good outside lens | Rating: ★★★★☆
“If you intend to take a lot of pictures indoors or in low light situations, I would probably recommend the 17-55 f2.8. However for outdoor daylight shooting, I do like the flexibility of this lens. It gives you a very wide angle when you need it and gives you enough reach for most situations. If you are casual outdoor photographer I would recommend this lens. This lens is a step up from the kit lens that comes with the T1i. However the price tag is a bit high for what you get. “ – by AH “AH”

Excelllent Lens, Heavy | Rating: ★★★★☆
“I bought this lens because I had dropped my Cannon Rebel XSi and damaged the lens that came with the original camera kit. I am an amateur. This lens is easy to use, hardy, takes pictures very quickly and gives me great close-ups. It does definitely add more weight to the camera.” – by SJ

Good walkaround lens | Rating: ★★★★☆
“This lens has a good color saturation, sharp image quality and fast Autofocus. the 85mm focal length is very useful to zoom at something without having to carry your longer zoom around. I use this lens mostly at day time, and the 17-55mm F2.8 is my inside-night time lens, although I can stretch the IS and make good pictures in low light.” – by Erick Houli

Most Excellent Lens | Rating: ★★★★☆
“I recently upgraded from the EF-S 18-55 IS to this EF-S 15-85 IS. GREAT lens, the difference between 17 & 15 is quite noticeable when it is needed. I recommend the Canon to anyone. Image quality is excellent, there is a little bit of vignetting but when you shoot in RAW, it is EASILY correctable in Canon’s DPP, as is the slight barrel distortion. I have not yet seen any chromatic aberration (CA). “ – by Richard

Amazing lens | Rating: ★★★★☆
“When I changed to the 15-85, which has a great wide end by the way, it was like I had a new camera. The sharpness of this lens is quite impressive – and that’s throughout it’s range. This is especially true in the corners, where many other lenses show issues. CA stays impressively low as well. Vingetting is a bit string but can easily be corrected in post or even easier, automatically in-camera on some models like the T2i, 7D, 5D MKII etc. This is a fantastic lens, and most shots look very sharp even shot full open. While it’s not a fast lens, the IS is very good on it and will help compensate. Add the sharp accurate optics and you have a winner. Highly recommended. “ – by NeedApple “Apple fan”

15-85 zoom lens | Rating: ★★★★★
“Great range on the lens. This is the widest angle lens I have ever used, and although the corners are shadowed at full wide, I can do a small crop and get rid of that on my sky shots of birds. I haven’t noticed it on other shots due to all the colors. This lens gives me a wide spectrum of use that means all I have to carry is this lens and my 400 zoom. Photos so far have been sharp.” – by Bat Man

Great all-around lenses, | Rating: ★★★★☆
“I like that the lens does not creep when facing down. Quality wise, there was no visible difference between 100mm 2.8 on the 85mm angle except for the bokeh which the 100mm does very nicely. 15mm-wise, there will be slight distortion if shot from tight space, but it works perfect for landscapes. I love this lens. It performs on landscapes and portraits very nicely.” – by Anthony Co “meandtina”

More user opinions | Write your opinion


Canon EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM Specifications

The new EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM sets a new standard for everyday photography on APS-C sensors. With a focal length range equivalent to 24-136mm in 35mm format, image stabilization and high-precision optics, the EF-S 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM offers stellar performance from wide-angle through to telephoto.

Lens Specifications:

* Focal Length & Maximum Aperture: 15 – 85mm 1:3.5-5.6
* Lens Construction: 17 elements in 12 groups
* UD Glass: 1
* Diagonal Angle of View: 84 degrees 30′ to 18 degrees 25′
* Focus System: Inner focusing system with USM
* Closest Focusing Distance: 1.15 ft. / 0.35m
* Filter Size: 72mm
* Max. Diameter x Length: 3.2 x 3.4 in./81.6 x 87.5mm
* Weight (lens only): 20.3 oz./575g

See also: Canon Lenses | Lens Reviews

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