Returning to the 18-135 Lens


Curbar Edge, The Peak District. Fuji XT-2 with 18-135mm lens. 1/60″ at f/16 and ISO200, 0.6 ND grad filter.

When I purchased my first Fuji camera (an XT1 which has since been sold), I bought a used 18-135 Fuji lens to accompany it. At the time, I was apprehensive because a lot of the lens reviews said the lens was poor and not of the usual Fuji quality. Despite this I pushed ahead and bought the lens, largely based on the excellent user reviews and the fact 18-135 is such a useful focal range. I reasoned that the results from lens test charts are often quite different to real world experience, so it was worth the risk.

Following the purchase, I ran into a number of other problems. Some were relating the lens whilst others were probably due to Adobe RAW processing problems (now largely resolved). Ultimately, I ended up returning the lens because the performance was quite poor, just as many of the lens charts had predicted.

Following this incident, I purchased the XT-2 which is a lovely camera to use. It came with an 18-55 lens which is good. I also purchased the 10-24mm, 16-55mm and 50-140mm lenses which are excellent. The problem with the 50-140 is that whilst the image quality is exceptional, it’s a big and heavy lens. I did for a while own a used 55-200mm lens which is smaller but I traded for the 50-140mm lens following image quality issues.

What I found myself wanting was a single lens that I could use most of the time unless I was looking for optimal quality. I was back to wondering about the 18-135 and if it was worth buying a new one, especially when someone I knew bought one and loved it.

I’m sure you have guessed by now that I purchased a new 18-135. So far, the results seem very promising. I have only used it for one outing but it’s a lovely lens to use. The results are also better than the original used lens I had purchased. The colour and contrast from the lens are nice whilst the image sharpness across the frame is good. The only slight deficiency is that I don’t think it has quite the capability to resolve distant detail that I would like, but then I’m comparing it to a much more expensive lens.

Hopefully I will be able to share more images from this lens in the future.

5 thoughts on “Returning to the 18-135 Lens

Add yours

  1. Thanks for another beautiful picture. I look forward to reading your comments about the Fujifilm X-T2 and different lenses as I am seriously considering purchasing one. An expensive beast to be sure, but if the image quality is excellent…..I want a macro, a short zoom (18 – 35 mm) and a longer zoom – up to 300mm as I am interested in picturing insects, small plants, landscapes and wildlife – mainly birds and small mammals.

    I would definitely not be a lightweight photographer with all that glass, but one must work to capture all the beauty laid out before our eyes.

    John

    1. The Fuji is a great camera but before investing that sort of money be sure to check out some RAW files first. They have a very different look and not everyone likes or can get on with it for Landscape.

      If I had to pick my best landscape kit it would be the Sony A7r with canon L lenses. It’s quite bulky though.

  2. I have the 18-135mm and use it on an X-T1, and have found it to be an excellent lens. The Fuji system does take a different processing approach than a camera with Bauer Sensor, but I find Capture One Pro gives the best results.
    Keep the images coming – look forward to you Friday posting!

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